Wednesday Weekly Roundup


I hope you had a fabulous Easter or Passover or Just Another Weekend! πŸ™‚ I used the time to change all my publishing plans again, LOL! So from next weekend new stories. The box sets have been postponed to the summer. And there might be a break in publishing during June, unless I manage to put together a few collections and book Mighty Editor on time.

I was hoping to be able to put up three paperbacks and order them, but one was stuck “in review” for 3 days, so my order for the first two was deleted after the first 24 hours. I had to wait until the third went live to order them all. Hopefully I’ll get them some time in the next couple of weeks.

Last week I wrote a little over 10K on the Duology and a related story before moving on. Like I said, I need to wait for the months to fly by and I still have to figure out a few kinks and rules necessary to worldbuilding, lest my readers get mad at me for contraddicting myself. It’s a different way of creating a parallel world from what I used to do, which might be why it’s taking me so long.

Remember the Infinite Bard? It still has my short story, The Raven, at the bottom… that list of free reads has grown to some 50 free stories to read online. Go check it out! πŸ™‚ New stories go live on Thursdays, I think.

Spring is here, and next weekend EUR is all closed up for the E-prix. And since last year they couldn’t run, they’re running on both days – with no public whatsoever. They also do a slightly different circuit because this year Fuksas “Nuvola” is a vaccination center. So hopefully it will take them less time to take down everything and allow us to get on with our lives.

I’ve taken the Writing Time Travel workshop, so I might write a few more time travel stories (I already wrote a couple for the Shared Worlds workshop). If you follow me on Bookbub (reviews tab), you can see I just finished a time travel novel and I’m starting on another one (although you won’t know which until I’m done and if I like it enough to recommend it, LOL).

I did write some time travel, precisely in Books of the Immortals – Fire that came out 10 years ago. If you haven’t read it yet, you can get it for free with Newsletter #2 coming out in June. Subscribe at the publisher’s page, as I already said quite a few times.

Soon I’ll be announcing another group effort. Thank you for those who purchased the IASFA sci-fi bundle and stay tuned for more offers, both free and paid. Easing off into the routine after a week off Day Job, I wish you a wonderful week! πŸ™‚

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


The classic editor comes and goes from this dashboard, so some learning curve will be involved in the coming days. Now I might need a couple of weeks to get used to the new thingy, but hopefully it won’t be too messy. Slowly getting the hang of it, so to speak.

Anyhow, Newsletter #1 is ready to roll with a full novel as free download. It goes out tomorrow and you still have time to subscribe, get the free story immediately and wait for the novel tomorrow. Still can’t figure out how to put sign up forms elsewhere, so please hop off to the publisher’s site and dump your email in the newsletter sign-up, thank you! πŸ™‚

Also, last days for the sci-fi bundle… grab it now if you haven’t already! Do you like space opera? How about military science fiction? Do you love the old masters and especially the book club, where you bought one book and received ten more? This is way better. https://20bookpacks.com/IASFA-Sci-Fi-Book-Bundle

The International Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Authors (IASFA) is a professional organization focused on aligning readers with authors. We are building the organization that currently numbers over 600 authors published within the SFF genres and growing. Stay tuned as each month we’ll offer full book samplers for free along with less frequent paid book bundle promotions. Help yourself to find your next favorite author by joining the IASFA newsletter. https://iasfa.org/book-promotion-calendar/

My friend Francesco Verso published his first collection of short stories in English. If you’d like to try some Italian sci-fi, here’s what he has to say:

Writing short stories – contrary to popular belief – is very hard. You can’t procrastinate, you can’t hide behind turns of phrase, you have to know where you are going and which buttons to press to reach the point in as few words as possible. Paradoxically the short story is the narrative form most suitable for the accelerated times in which we all find ourselves: brief, dense, and compact, the short story is a precious and agile interface for understanding the future we will be living in for the rest of our days. These are my first eleven short stories written between 2008 and 2020, inside you will find a kaleidoscope of visions of the future, ranging from augmented reality to artificial intelligence, from gamification to #solarpunk, all the way to biotechnology and post-humanism.

You can find his book on Amazon.IT (and probably the other marketplaces as well, but this is the link he gives).

And for a different kind of sci-fi, Cygnus Rising by Craig Martelle, the first book in the Cygnus Space Opera series, is on sale for 99 cents from tomorrow. “From the ashes of their past, Cygnus was rising. From space they came, to space they returned, humanity searching for a way home.” Grab it from your favorite retaile fromr April 1. Limited time and no, not an April Fools’! πŸ˜‰

Now back to regular programming! Last week I wrote 13K (more or less like the previous week) on my urban/contemporary fantasy Duology, hoping to finish a fist draft by Easter. There’s still some way to go in world-building and other stuff, so I don’t think this will come out anytime soon, but well… I’m on it! πŸ˜‰

Now that Holi came and went, I had to rewrite a couple of scenes in the Duology… but I’m keeping everything in the “deleted scenes” file, just in case. The Duology ends in October, hence I won’t be able to publish before then. It will soon be dated, even if I don’t mention it’s 2020-2021, but I thought the now would be a good time to mix some magic into the hell we’re going through all over the world.

Last weekend I did most of the fun publishing stuff, i.e. covers! I like choosing the stock images and possibly get the background from my own pictures to save credits, but some places I’ve never been to, so I must use stock images. You can already see some results in the Books of the Immortals cover variants that will be available to Newsletter subscribers throughout the year: Books of the Immortals – Fire has a stock image of Timbuktu, Books of the Immortals – Ether has Junagarh Fort of Bikaner in the background, taken by yours truly back in 2016 during my tour of Rajasthan.

So I prepared all the covers for the books coming out in the next few months, and now I’m left with the boring part – editing and formatting. This morning I’ll be busy helping my friend and cover artist Cristina (who did the original Books of the Immortals covers) with her own stuff as well and no new titles will come out this weekend because it’s Easter. Most people will celebrate it – or Passover – so I won’t bother publishing anything.

Then it will be box sets and collections, and the new titles should arrive in June. It’s novellas and short stories. I have a bunch of short story collections to publish as well, and possibly another curated anthology or two. We’ll see.

paperbacks of Books of the Immortals - Air

And let’s not forget tomorrow it’s the Bookversary of Books of the Immortals – Air! Here you can read that first announcement… ten years already… where did time go? Anyhow, get the ebook for free by subscribing to the newsletter above! πŸ™‚ With a variant cover, but it’s still the same book… or wait a couple of weeks for an even better deal… stay tuned!

A last suggested article/book in case you’re a buddying writer – For Independent Authors: The Ultimate Guide to Publishing Wide. I’m notoriously wide, although I don’t go direct to Nook and Apple, but I use both Smashwords and Draft2Digital as distributors. I have only one short story in KU, Lisa’s Odyssey, at least in English. Now I shall go back to my writing and editing and formatting paperbacks… have a great week! πŸ™‚

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


And here’s the last book of Before Future Earth Chronicles! πŸ™‚ On the cover Ram and Zarina, which makes my friend Shafali cringe because I put a Hindu boy with a Muslim girl, but that’s the point of the story! Romeo and Juliet with religion instead of feuding families! πŸ˜‰

This is a revision of Mumbai Dreams with a slightly different ending and pushed in the future. Here’s the full blurb of yhe ebook:

Two novellas at the time of the apocalypse and beyond.

β€œMumbai, 2060CE” tells the love story between Ram and Zarina – a completely revised edition of Mumbai Dreams.

β€œInheritor” tells the story of David, son of Daniel the vampire and Donna the alien human, kicked out of the alien facility where his parents live and exiled in the Himalayan Rainbow Town.

BONUS:

Excerpts from Rainbow Towns Journals

1. Claude Mancini, Rainbow Town Mont Blanc

2. Nour Shah, Rainbow Town Sahand

3. Jacob Davies, Rainbow Town Mount Mitchell

These three things will probably mixed with the other two books in the Omnibus that will come out in a couple of weeks. I realized I haven’t formatted that one yet because I probably haven’t decided the order in which to put the stories, since they sometimes overlap, LOL!

I mean, “Mumbai, 2060CE” is at the same time of part three of “Lockdown Begins” – same story from another point of view, should they be next to each other? Maybe I’ll put the journals first, since all three are mentioned in part one? I’ll think about it next weekend…

Last week I wrote my 10K although I spent most of the weekend cleaning up publishing stuff. I tried to change a few things on the publisher’s page and somehow screwed up, so I had to ask for help to Mighty Webmaster Admin who solved everything remotely. But I had to re-add the newsletter sign-up and when I tried to change the header picture, I couldn’t.

I did follow his instructions, but things changed in the WordPress dashboard and despite my attempts I couldn’t change the image. I won’t bother Mighty Webmaster Admin again – until the next problem. Already last week I had an email alert that something was wrong with the site, then I made a mess myself… Asking help 3 times in one week is way too much, I shall leave him alone for now! πŸ˜€

A business musing by Kris Rusch that reminded me why I’m in this still, ten years later. Yes, the world is changing, every norm has been shattered, it’s hard to predict where we’re going – and I didn’t see a rise in sales, but what she says about old traditional system and new indie publishing is still true.

And it breaks my heart that there are still young writers looking for agents. I guess I was lucky to be alive in the age of the typewriter. And in a country that didn’t have creative writing courses at the time (they started in the new millennium in case you’re wondering). And that Mom helped me understand that vanity publishers weren’t publishers and money flows to the writer and all that stuff.

I dreamed of being a writer in my teens too. But it was the 20th century, and already back then what felt awesome as soon as I wrote it became stale when I read it again two or five years later.

We change throughout our lives – I think I mentioned the various “stages” of my writing – and I’m still at a point where I hate everything I write, but I keep writing anyway because that’s what I do.

I’m a writer, I write. I’m the worst judge of my work, so I shall let readers and editors decide with their wallets. It’s a long term thing, a career, not an overnight, unsustainable success, and I will get there.

I discovered this article on Aphantasia, which actually matches my lack of setting, although probably for different reasons from the author of the article.

When I was younger I didn’t put a setting because I was too lazy, but I did see a movie in my head. Talking heads in white rooms mostly.Β Now I have trouble visualizing scenes, and sometimes I start thinking how I’d write it, instead of trying to visualize it.

What I mean is we change also in the way we express ourselves. I used to write down the movies in my head, dialog-heavy with a camera always on extreme close-up.

Now I’m more wordy and less visual, but the transition isn’t smooth. I still have trouble every now and then, and I try to visualize the scene, and then think how I could write it down – with the setting and everything.

Another thing that changed through the decades is going from real people in my stories (during my teens) to virtual casts of celebrities (from movies and music videos) to finding inspiration from stock images or DazStudio 3D rendering characters (although I still thow in Da Muses and other celebrities every now and then)

That’s probably why sometimes I cringe when I read older titles, but I’m not going to rewrite them They are the best stories I could write at the time, and I moved on since.

I don’t think I’m completely changing my voice now, at 50+ and after 15 years of switching to writing primarily in English! πŸ™‚

If I ever write something that doesn’t sound like me, I have another super sikrit pen name ready! πŸ˜€

Oh, and remember that contest for Cupid flash fiction/poems? I posted a flash fiction, but Tori, who posted after me, won the contest! So glad I sent her their way! Congrats, Tori! And you guys can go check that page and enjoy those valentine stories! πŸ™‚

Last but not least: more free books at IASFA! Go check the Alien SciFi free books page! The promotion runs from March 9-13!

Next week, the International Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers (IASFA) will announce a science fiction book bonanza that is out of this world.

And if you’re anti-Zon (most IASFA autors are Kindle Unlimited), there’s also a BookFunnel giveaway with 150+ (!) SFF books! Ends at the end of the month…

And that’s all for today… have a great week!

Sunday Surprise


A signal boost in case you didn’t get enough books for Christmas. My story, Olympia Nights, is in The Phantom Games. Helios of Sparta, the full novella, will come out some time next year. Happy Holidays.

Available Now!Β The Rest of the Excalibur Books Catalog …

The Dimensions Unknown series –

Mind-bending journeys into tomorrows that never were, and yesterdays that are yet to be …

Go here for Volume One

Go here for Volume Two

Go here for Volume Three

Shipwrecked and alone in haunted Japan … Simon Grey and the March of a Hundred Ghosts, by Charles Kowalski

Alien science meets ancient Japanese mythology in this epic battle across time and space …

the Sword Mirror Jewel trilogy, by John Paul Catton.

Go here for Book One

Go here for Book Two

Go here for Book ThreeΒ 

Hina Takamichi was a girl of two worlds … but only one would survive …Zero Sum Game, by Cody Martin

The Nihon Gothic series – a set of standalone supernatural thrillers set in Japan, by Zoe Drake

Book 1: The Mists of Osorezan
In Venice, in London, in the deep Japanese countryside … the sleepers are awaking …

Book 2: Dead Hand Clapping
A bizarre serial killer is stalking Tokyo’s sleazy underworld …

Book 3: Dark Lanterns
A collection of 15 chilling Tokyo ghost stories featuring the Yokai – grotesque creatures from Japanese folklore and mythology …

Until next time, keep healthy – and keep the faith!

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I wrote over 12K and almost finished another story. This week I’m taking a break to edit FEC 11 and 12 for a January publication as well as editing the 2 prequels that will go to the editor in January, so I might not write much.

I also uploaded the updated PDF of the books available in print. Feel free to dowload it from the home page and peruse it. All are available on Amazon, and possibly elsewhere if the Createspace expanded distribution is still on (but it’s not on the newer titles, or is it? Sigh).

There are also the curated anthologies as well as the collaboration anthologies and other publications, if you like paper books. I got my brag shelves copies just in time after I finished my latest non-fiction book about antiquity battles (which is good for research on my vampires).

Also, the Smashwords sale is now on, check out everything 50% off or at 99c! πŸ™‚

Everybody pushes people to join FB groups, because that’s what FB said we should do, and then they killed reach. Someone foresees pay for play for groups coming soon. The new FB definitely changed how I get groups updates – and not in a good way. So I’m thinking of closing the Street Team group on Facebook and either open it on groups.io (more like a newsletter, although the members of the team can reply to my posts and everybody sees them, just like comments on a FB post) or on Slack (more like a forum, where we can have different “rooms” to discuss different things). Which would you prefer? I already posted this poll on the current FB group, but I’m going to close it by the end of the year anyway.

I’m growing quite tired of social media. Facebook went from “Are you sure you want to delete this? We can help you secure your account if you didn’t make this post” to “Are you sure you want to delete this?” to “move to trash” that works like email trash and gets emptied after 30 days. Sigh.

As for Instagram, it keeps crashing and won’t let me upload things unless I give it permission to access my phone, mic and location. So I’m going to stop publishing the strip there and put it on hold for now. I’m not particularly happy with it anyway.

And let’s close the year (more or less) with a last shoutout. Disney Must Pay! Don’t let this slip past them! Next one is technically the last post of the year, and I’ll leave my goals for 2021 for then. Hint: I don’t have many, LOL! Have a great Holiday Season!

Sunday Surprise


And it’s a guest! I was on his blog a couple of weeks ago and now he’s here! People, welcome J. Scott Coatsworth! πŸ™‚

Where do you live and write from?

My husband Mark and I live in Sacramento. We’ve been here for seventeen years – we lived in the Bay Area for a long time, but I grew up in Tucson. Literally, though, I write at my desk in our shared office with a view of an ivy-covered wall and my container vegetable garden.

Why do you write?

Because I have to. I’m a writer, and I have so many stories in my head just begging to be told. I’m happiest when I am writing regularly – it’s an itch that demands to be scratched.

When did you start writing?

I wrote my first short story in fifth grade for a University of Arizona elementary school writing contest. It was strongly inspired by the Jetsons (flying car and all) and illustrated by the author in crayon. It won the contest (I don’t remember if it took first place or was one of the winners) and was placed in the UofA library in Tucson. It might still be there. πŸ˜›

I started writing seriously in my last few years of high school, and submitted my first novel at 25. It was roundly rejected, and we will never speak of it again.

What genre(s) do you write?

Sci fi, fantasy, and magical realism, mostly. I’ve dabbled in mm (male-male) romance, but my heart was always in sci fi. My mom got me started on Lord of the Rings in third grade, and I read McCaffrey, Asimov, Clarke, Heinlein, Piper, Brin, and many others by the time I reached junior high.

What does your writing routine consist of?

I get up around 5:30 every morning and try to do an hour to an hour-and-a-half each morning before starting work (with varying levels of success LOL). It’s important to have a regular schedule, and starting early means my mind is at its most sharp.

What do you feel are your strengths as a writer? How have you developed these qualities?

I’m great at writing epic tales and weaving together multiple plot and character threads. I see my writing as cinematic, playing out over a large canvass. I also excel at worldbuilding (if I don’t say so myself πŸ˜‰ ) I build detailed, immersive worlds that you won’t want to leave.

Where do you find your inspiration? Do you put yourself in your stories?

LOL those are two very different questions. Inspiration comes from all kinds of places. Some opf my short stories are inspired by single words – Pareidolia, Eventide – and large parts of the Liminal Sky series were influenced by that word – liminal” – that I first heard from one pf our pastors at church. Still others come from short story fragments I started ages ago but never finished, or things that pop into my head (often in the middle of the night – I got the idea for Across the Transom after midnight and got up and wrote it whole.

And yeah, probably? I think there’s a little of me in each story I write. How could there not be? Each character draws on things I have seen or read or heard or done, so it’s inevitable that I leave a little “me” behind.

Outliner or improviser? Fast or slow writer?

Again the trick double-question! πŸ™‚

A bit of both. I used to be a total improviser/pantser, which explains the hordes of unfinished stories on my hard drive. Now I start out with a rough outline (plotter) and improvise along the way, allowing myself to change it as needed. It serves as a roadmap for where I want to go.

And I’m pretty fast, when I stick to it – I can complete a couple novels and a number of short stories in a year.

Tell us about your latest book

I’m in the midst of self publishing my two sci fi trilogies – The Ariadne Cycle and The Oberon Cycle. As of this writing, book one of Oberon – Skythane – has just been rereleased. The Oberon Cycle was inspired by the Giants series by James Hogan in that it’s like an onion, with new layers being peeled back in each new book. In the first one, we meet Xander and Jameson, two men thrown together by fate as the end of Oberon approaches. Oberon is a unique half-world – literally a half sphere, and much of the plot revolves around this central fact.

Indie publishing or traditional publishing – and why?

Oooh, tricksy. I started out on the traditional publishing side. In 2018 I self published my first book – “The River City Chronicles” – and was soon doing so regularly with novellas and short stories. Now I am republishing my old Dreamspinner books, and soon plan to publish more new works.

But I am also trying to land a big publisher through agent submissions, which I hope will eventually be fruitful. Cross your fingers!

Any other projects in the pipeline?

Oh yeah. There’s Dropnauts, my Liminal Sky spin-off that looks at what happened back on Earth. That’s out to agents currently.

I am working on a new trilogy set on Tharassas, the world of The Last Run.

And I have six other short stories in various states of submission on the spec fic magazine circuit.

I also have a number of other stories to rerelease this next year.

What is your goal as a writer and what are you doing to achieve it?

To reach as wide an audience as I can’ I am writing writing writing, and also trying to level up to a big NYC publisher. I’d love to see the books done as a TV series or film someday. πŸ™‚ So I submit, submit, submit!

What is the best piece of writing advice you’ve ever been given?

Don’t stop. We writers are almost all afflicted with imposter syndrome – that internal critic who tells you your writing sucks, you’re just not good enough, and you should pack it up and go home. I let mine stop me from writing for twenty years after that first stinging rejection. I wish I had kept going. You can’d sell what you don’t write!

_________________________

Find Scott online:

Website

Facebook:Β Author Page

Twitter:Β Author Page

Instagram:Β Author Page

Dreamspinner Press:Β Author Page

Goodreads:Β Author Page

QueeRomance Ink:Β Author Page

Amazon:Β Author Page

BookBub:Β Author Page

Buy Skythane

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I wrote 16K+, and after adding and subtracting and editing what I already had, I started on what I thought would be a short story and turned out to be a novella of vampires into the future, so it will probably have its own e-book. I was at 11K by Sunday night and wasn’t done yet.

I finished on Monday and will probably have to write another couple of books (again, both sides of the story, the humans’ and the vampires’), so I screwed up the schedule again. The good news is, this might take me to the end of the year. The bad news is, there will be a break anyway because I will send a first batch to Mighty Editor on October 19th, so I won’t have anything ready until the following weekend.

But FEC 10 comes out this weekend. Then I’ll have to skip to the 24th, when I’ll probably publish that novella (still working on a title I like), and the following weekend I’ll release Mortals Apocalypse, or the vampires’ view of the apocalypse, on Nov.1, like the four novels of Vampires Through the Centuries. Two weeks later, FEC0 or the origins of Rainbow Towns lockdowns.

December will probably box set time, but I haven’t decided yet. Might be those two sequels… As for the new curated anthology, it’s probably for the new year, unless I manage to put it together after the American elections, which might mean for the Holidays. Maybe. Don’t count on it! πŸ˜‰

Re: those typo faeries, here’s why it’s so hard to catch your own typos. Because my eyes don’t like staring at a screen for too long, I usually print out stuff, both for beta-reading and editing. That’s how I caught many typo faeries, when going through the paperbacks of the first five Future Earth Chronicles books! Now I hope to have the time to check also the second five, but first I’ll have to receive my author copies, LOL! They’re scheduled for delivery next week, so we’ll see…

And I was a guest, rambling on J. Scott Coatsworth’s blog about Future Earth Chronicles (a.k.a. FEC), Azur and other stuff… go check it out! πŸ™‚ Another guest post I did was never posted (the author is very busy), so I’m going to put it here before it’s too late. Have a great week! πŸ™‚

Image may contain: text that says 'DOSSIER Di cosa ammaleremo L.5000 POCUS 52 febbralo 1997 INSERT L'Almana della Selenza1996 Scoprire e capire il mondo Anno 2020 vivremo cosΓ¬ Casa lavoro gli oggetti arrivo quelli che spariranno Le nuove mediche I mestieri piΓΉ richiesti SCIENZA fisica al circo IN PIU' faraoni dal dietologo Serpenti mostri mare'The world is falling apart – what do you do?

I have kept an article from February 1997 of Focus that predicted how we’d live in 2020, because I knew we’d get there! Remember 1997? The dawn of internet, the first cell phones, and two years before The Matrix? Yeah, that world. The journalists played sci-fi writers for that issue.

What did they predict? A little less than 8 billion people on the planet. A global market, with factories in space (where are they, though?). Health-wise, we should worry only about non-transmittable sicknesses like cancer, but they also mentioning the possibility of mutated viruses that could start epidemics like it happened with AIDS (hello, Covid-19! Full blown pandemic was not in their predictions, though).

According to their predictions, someone born in 1997 had the following possibilities of careers: technology economist, online creator, bioengineer, virtual director and problem solver. Except for online creators (influencers, artists, writers, musicians and YouTubers), I don’t see any of those yet.

What would vanish: land lines (almost gone), moka pot (even here in Italy, most people have other coffee machines, I’m the only one still using the moka pot), cash and old light bulbs (almost gone as well). They predicted a “travel screen” (although it looks quite different from smartphones and tablets, but it’s close enough), a watch that can become a videophone (again, smartphones), micro-cameras, a graphic tablet to draw upon (most artists no longer use pencil and paper these days, they’ve all gone digital), and some “scanner-reader” that is basically a text-to-speech thing (or other software for the visually impaired).

The smart homes would have cameras and monitors and speakers everywhere (hello, Alexa and its peers), computers will be invisible (not yet, I don’t see many virtual keyboards or screens anywhere) and e-ink (hello, ebooks!).

Welcome to 2020! Some of those predictions came true, other are still sci-fi, but well, here we are. How do you deal with living in the future? Well, you stay in the present as much as you can, I guess. It’s not always easy, especially in such trying times.

How do you stay sane in a world gone crazy? Personally, I’m glad it’s breaking down, because I was sick of our poisonous way of life. I hope we’ll come out of this better, after re-prioritizing and re-focusing ourselves. I certainly don’t want to go back to 1997, or even 2007 for that matter.

I might have lost quite a few dreams in the meantime, and can’t see myself anywhere in three or five years, but eventually I’ll find my focus. It’s been a long hot summer and the only relief was writing my Future Earth Chronicles, because it reminded me there’s life after the apocalypse. Especially in the 25th century, LOL!

Now I’m trying to write the prequel about the apocalypse itself (a few decades in the second half of this century), and I manage it because, again, I know these people will be all right – or at least the vampires who live through the centuries will get to see the future narrated in the series.

It might be a good topic for me at this time, because I’m also changing. Age does that to a person, and even though I love the double five on my birthday cake, I’m also aware of how my body and mind are changing. But then, that’s what life is all about, change.

Going through the change is painful, but things can only get better. Soon I’ll be able to resume traveling and looking for a place I want to move to. I’ll be able to focus on what I want to do for a living if I manage to get an early retirement from a Day Job that is killing my soul.

I don’t see the light at the end of the tunnel yet, but I know it’s there and I keep going. I’m still blogging after ten years and next year I’ll celebrate ten years of indie publishing. I might take a break from publishing next year, or slow down the writing – I haven’t decided yet.

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I wrote almost 13K and I hope to wrap that project this week, so I can print it out before I get off Day Job (so it will have to be done by tomorrow afternoon, LOL! I know I can do it!). Then I’m probably going to write a couple of shorts around these novels to either send out or just add to the ebooks when they’ll come out in November or December. Anyhow, Yearly wordcount is 405K, so very close to the goal, yay!

If you’d like some advice on plot and character, head for Chuck Wendig’s blog. I’m character-oriented for the non-initiated, and plot is so secondary to me, that sometimes I’m afraid I have no plot, busy as I am following those characters wandering around, meeting people and doing stuff. Sadist Author who threw stuff at them seems asleep, lately.

But that’s also why I can’t write to a formula, because my characters simply won’t follow the written plot. Meh. Maybe I’ll manage it with a short story, but longer works… probably not. Oh, well… considering how younger generations seem to prefer videos and audio, soon nobody will read the old-fashioned way anyway, so I’ll have to find another way to narrate those stories, LOL!

And did you hear about the notorious GPT-3-generated blog showing AI still can’t imitate human writing? I was really impressed with DanT’s comment (an image in the original, so reporting here for the visually impaired):

If I pay for a book, magazine or newspaper, I’m not just buying the content, I’m buying the labour of the people involved, who have spent time learning their craft, and researching their stories. So it’s a fair exchange for me to pay for a book by William Gibson, for example, because I know at the end of the financial chain some of the money will be going to a person who has invested time and effort into the creation of the product I’ve bought.

If the only human input is five minutes spent on a headline and intro, which will probably then just be spun into multiple variations for testing purposes, why would I assign a monetary value to it? There’s no labour to be rewarded, and no bond with the writer (which is a big driver of me spending money on writing). Instead it’s just some very clever AI churning out words which are meaningless to it.

Rather than saving content companies cash, it seems more likely to entirely devalue writing as medium, which has pretty big implications for how humanity communicates in the future.

So we might find ourselves in that April’s Fool post by Mark Coker (based on which I wrote a story that has been picked up for a charity anthology for no pay, but I still have no idea if and when it will be published), New Amazon Service Eliminates the Need for Authors.

Meanwhile, we’re still here, still writing and still publishing, aren’t we? And tomorrow there’s a Kobo sale for the US and Canada only, book 2 of Future Earth Chronicles will be at 99c, so for those of you who bought book 1, you can now grab Book 2 at a special price for a limited time! πŸ™‚For good laughs Terrible Book Covers: Hilariously Bad Book Covers of Your Favourite Classic Novels. Having been on Lousy Book Covers myself for the old cover of Technological Angel, I understand it’s not nice to tease bad book covers, but these are public domain/classics the cover designer obviously hasn’t read (in spite of them being classics), so chuckle all along if you wish. I particularly love Moby Dick portrayed as a shark! πŸ˜€

And that’s all for today! Have a great week! πŸ™‚

Sunday Surprise


And as I’ve been hinting for months now, here’s the new covers of the old books – Future Earth Chronicles Books 1 to 5!

Raj and Bel have gone home, but the Rainbow Towns Band is still out there. Follow the rest of the gang in their wanderings all over Earth… in the next five – Future Earth Chronicles Books 6 to 10!

After struggling to update on Amazon books that had been set up as pre-orders in the past years (three in this series and one in another) and considering that pre-orders don’t do much for me, I won’t set them up for the next five (and a half…), but you’ll be able to binge-read the whole series around November! πŸ™‚

And I have another Smashwords giveaway… if you feel so inclined! Keep in mind that you only have to register for Smashwords, and unless you tell me, I’ll never know you downloaded the book. You won’t be signed up on a newsletter and you’ll be able to get for free what is at 99c elsewhere… so hop off to Smashwords to grab your free copy of Future Earth Chronicles Shorts!

code for Future Earth Chronicles Shorts

The code is: VU68C

The code expires on: 2020-10-31

If you want more info, check out the series page… Have a great Sunday! πŸ™‚

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I wrote over 13K and reached the new events, since the start of the book is a recap of the previous ones. And again I got surprised by the turn of events, so I’m speedily going towards the completion of this series (at least for now. Next generations might show up eventually, like in the Star Minds Universe, LOL!).

David Gaughran is back with a few publications for writers – although I still have to go through the first editions of Let’s Get Digital and Amazon Decoded, you might want to check them out! Don’t be lazy like me! πŸ˜‰

I guess each one of us reacted differently to lockdown – I hid into writing and can’t be bothered studying the marketing part yet. But I’m still publishing, so whenever I’m ready to study and give everything a marketing boost, I’ll have plenty to choose from! πŸ™‚

Another Kickstarter worth checking: Funny and Stupid Stories (That No One Should Read) – ain’t that a great title? Go check it out, the ebook is for everybody, although the paperback is only for the UK… And yes, it’s a Kickstarter in GBP (although I see it in Euro and you probably see it in USD or whatever your currency is!)! πŸ™‚

This is a collection/anthology of funny stories. I write in all genres, but mainly horror and supernatural crime. In between the “serious” stuff, I write a few funny stories to relax. This is a collection of those stories.

And if you prefer a trilogy of paranormal mysteries set in small town Kentucky featuring psychic Ash Jericho, To Die For is still going for a few more days.

The Ash Jericho series is a three book paranormal mystery series. It’s possible there will be more books and stories in the series at a later time, but my goal is to publish these three books quickly, back to back, so that readers can enjoy their visit to Ash’s small town.

Or if you’re fore epic fantasy, this is a first novel campaign to help get a decorative edition of the book.

Firefrost Β is epic fantasy at its finest: danger, magic, swords, and crowns.Β It’s a standalone novel about overcoming the darkness inside each of us and the prejudices that keep us captive. The novel is set in a burning, war-torn world, and is full of a dark and powerful magic that consumes hearts and kingdoms.

One day I might do my own Kickstarter, but it’s not going to happen anytime soon – conflicts with my DayJob, don’t ask me why, but that’s one more reason to quit and move to a country where things are simpler! πŸ™‚

I’m reading the books from a vampire bundle I got some time ago from StoryBundle, but I realized maybe it’s also time I read Homo Deus by Harari, since I’m dealing with our future… so as soon as I finish this 3 Musketeers retelling with vampires, I better go back to that before I finish that bundle! πŸ˜‰

Last weekend ended up being Rock N Roll weekend. I realized Saturday was a former muse’s 60th birthday, so I watched Sugar Town (his only movie with a decent role – but he’s not an actor! He’s John Taylor of Duran Duran, there, I gave out my age again! *Waves at other Duranies still out there*) after lunch. After dinner Rock On.

Sunday I watched Rock Star after lunch (with world’s sexiest drummer, Blas Elias! πŸ˜‰ ) and Rock On 2 after dinner. Techie Bro didn’t come over to sleep, so I felt free to watch whatever I wanted. He came on Monday, though, since he had no bed to sleep in either at the old house or the new one.

So, after a very musical weekend… summer came. So I’ll probably sort of kind of vanish now. Oh, wait, I have plenty of titles for Sci-Fi July… I’ll try to postpone my summer letargy, LOL! Stay tuned for the coming publications, announcement on the publisher’s page in a few days! Have a great weekend! πŸ™‚

 

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