Writer Wednesday


And I wrote even less this week because I didn’t write at all during the weekend. I had programmed to go through a manuscript for a final pass and ended up with two because I finished the translation of Star Minds Next Generation, so I didn’t have any time left for new words.

Aaand I found minor mistakes again, sigh. So I even had to correct the original and upload the new version to all retailers. I’m back to the WiP now and hope to wrap it before the weekend, since next weekend I’ll have to check another couple of manuscripts before sending everything off to the editor.

I also did a couple of illustrations for Beautiful. After various attempts, I decided I’m going to illustrate Beautiful instead of the other shorter works I had in mind. Because I love Rithvik and Kerrien and I look forward to drawing them chibi stile. I have considered even a comic book version or a graphic novel, but that would take even longer.

So here’s a preview of what the illustrated version will be like – the original cover vs. the new cover (done quite quickly, so I may rework it before I put up the illustrated version).

And don’t ask me when it will be available, since I draw in my spare time and it’s not much at the moment, LOL! But it will be paperback only, since I’m not very good at adding images to e-books. So a special illustrated edition available only in paperback sometimes before the end of the year – I hope.

If you haven’t read Beautiful yet and would like to try it, it’s available also in the bundle Cats Cats Cats… just sayin’! ๐Ÿ˜‰ There will be more cats in the current WiP, but I don’t know when it will be published, so in the meantime, you can get that bundle instead! ๐Ÿ™‚ Have a great week!

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Writer Wednesday


I must say that writing 3 entwined books at the same time is a new and fun process for me. I should have done the same with the vampires novels, but well… too late for that! ๐Ÿ˜‰

The workshop on Writing Series was really helpful for this, so a big THANK YOU goes to Dean Wesley Smith! I used also the Teams (no longer available) and Writing Science Fiction workshops for this one.

I’m wrapping up these 3 books this week and then I’ll go back to shorter works for the rest of the month – I have promised one story to a charity anthology and I want to submit to Tor novella again (albeit in the July window).

Kindle Scout results! As expected, I wasn’t chosen, hence in June you will have the first new title of the year, my historical novel The Fern and The Cross. I shall set up the pre-order next weekend, since I’m afraid at the end of the month Kindle Scout might vanish completely.

Thank you to anyone who nominated me, you will be notified through KindleScout when the (e-book first) comes out. I’ll do the paperback after the summer. Or you can keep following this very blog, haha! ๐Ÿ˜€

Writerly links! David Gaughran is still everywhere, I wonder if he’ll show up at Dublin 2019 worldcon next year! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Guest on D2D blog, platform building and related terrors. And on Joanna Penn’s blog, someone talks about his book Strangers to Superfans.

Speaking of Dublin and Worldcon, I filled the form to be on the programme. Soon I’ll fill also the programme suggestions form… we’ll see where that takes us! ๐Ÿ™‚

Oh, and… Happy Birthday, Smashwords! ๐Ÿ˜€ Have a great week!

Writer Wednesday


Might be because I’m off DayJob, but last week was quite productive. Over 15K written and another project wrapped. I started on the third in the series and because I didn’t remember something about a secondary character, I went to check Star Minds Third Generation Snippets… and had two rewrite the ending of #1 (minor changes on #2). Glad I haven’t published any yet, LOL! ๐Ÿ™‚

Still off DayJob this week, so I hope to have a good headstart with #3, maybe even get close to the end, so I that I have time to squeeze #4 into May as well. It’s another generation, but he does meet all three protagonists of the other books, so I might end up with a 4-books box set at the end of the year.

It’s short novels, mind you. The first is 55K, the second 32K. The third will probably be around that lenght (30K). All together they’ll be like Star Minds the Trilogy in length – which works well for paperbacks (not-quite-a-doorstopper but still almost 500pages long).

Anyhow, we’ll see. I have ordered a few books I need to read for Post-Apocalypse Chronicles Book 2, and I’ll post an image as soon as the last one gets to me. But I also need to reed 3 paper books for the next vampire novel, so in June that’s what I’ll be doing. And then July POC2 and then I’ll get back to the Heroines, unless some shorter work decides to become a real short novel in the meantime…

And by the end of the year I’ll have reached my goal of writing 500k! ๐Ÿ˜€

Oh, by the way, I curated another bundle! With all that extra time off DayJob I put together the Thieves bundle with eleven novels (a couple short ones) at 8$! So the vampires are gone, you can now enjoy some thieves – all night creatures, ain’t they? Sometimes, LOL!

Writerly links! Joanna Penn reports from the London Book Fair. I went there once in 2007. Things have changed so much in publishing since, that I kinda look forward to going again. Here’s to hoping I can make it next year. Oh, and “comparisonitis“… ever heard of it? Lots of words of wisdom here too! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Then we have David Gaughran’s presentation of his book Strangers to Superfans. If you want to hear a less biased view, my guest Rita Carla Francesca Monticelli did a long review of From Strangers to Superfans. Very well worth a reading (the review, I mean).

Considering that I still need to read both Let’s Get Digital and Let’s Get Visible (I have older versions and won’t get the new ones – don’t ask) aaand Mastering Amazon Ads… but at least I’ll know what to expect next year when I get back on the publishing wagon (although… guess what? Things may change in the next months, LOL! But I’ll get the revised version when I’m ready!).

And that’s all for today! Have a great week! ๐Ÿ˜€

Writer Wednesday


I must say I’ve had a productive writing week, with 19K words written. I also wrapped draft zero of one novel (a little over 50K), now I’m working on its “companion” – it’s, like, three novels intertwined but that can be read as standalone, like the vampires novels, but I’ll be publishing them more or less together, or at least closer to each other than the vampires novels (one a year).

It’s another sub-series of Star Minds, in case you’re wondering, and I hope to have the first out in July to add it to the Sci-fi July Redux bundle, and then we’ll see for the other two. They might come out shorter, so I may combine them. I’ll definitely do a box set when the miniseries is complete! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Speaking of bundles, Spring Surprise is on sale until the 28th! And more to come, so stay tuned! ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s a seasonal bundle, so May is the last month to get it. Also, Vampires of the World will vanish in May and there will be a last week sale. More on that next week.

Mighty Zon strikes back! An author’s nightmare with Amazon… and if you like sci-fi, grab this World Sci-fi bundle before it’s gone. I’m still trudging through the bundles I’ve been part of at Bundle Rabbit last year… my TBR pile will never go down, sigh! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

In case you’re just starting and are wondering what’s best for you, here’s a very good article on publishing in 2018 – the pros and cons of trad pub vs self pub. I am mostly indie, but I am trying to sell short stories to traditional markets (one sold last year, still not out – being patient…).

And my Kindle Scout novel (15 days left to nominate it) is my attempt at being hybrid on a single project that is an outlier of my usual production. I may also send a rejected novella to another publisher, and in case he likes it, I’ll let him publish it, since it’s not related to any of the current series (except for being loosely part of Future Earth).

So, yeah, we’ll see. Now I shall go back to my writing cave… have a great week! ๐Ÿ™‚

Random Friday


And it’s Star Minds Friday! Here’s the series trailer for those of you who don’t know them yet:

You can meet the characters of the Trilogy and the Snippets here:

Star Minds Sundays on the authorโ€™s blog: Kol-ian, Daniele&Chantal, Gaurishankar and Maela, Ker-ris and Shan-leo, Mya, Cโ€™ellโ€™andy and Tyro.

AAAAND on Lisa Burton Radio (Daniele)!

The next generation is here:

Interview with Shan-leo and Dadina

Interview with Izzy-lee

Interview with Kay-low

Interview with Zaphadin

And even though her story came out a few months ago, now you get to know better the third generation in the person of Iso-bel Aya Shermac! (To the one and only buyer of Star Minds Third Generation Snippets – that includes the ebook above – I uploaded a correction about a secondary character’s age – get your copy from Smashwords or just know that Arica of Sylvania is 60 at the time of Sire Minds, not “in her forties” as previously stated!)

Hi guys,

I’m Samantha and I come from another world โ€“ the original, old Silvery Earth, where people are immortal and never grow up. When I’m not switching bodies at will, I travel to other universes, especially books or movies. That’s how I met Rajveer the vampire, for example!

So, I’m taking over the interviews on this blog! And here I am, meeting people from other books/universes/whatever!

So hello, girl! Tell me a little about yourself (name, ageโ€ฆ)

Iso-bel Aya Shermac, daughter of Shan-leo Shermac-Vaurabi and Mayumi Ikagoru. I’m twenty and currently training at the Sylvanian Academy, even though I’m actually from Marc’harid, the Sire planet.

I’ve heard those names before… Describe your appearance in ten words or less.

A blue-eyed brunette, petite and willowy. Father’s colors, mother’s height.

Do you have an enemy or nemesis? If so, who are they and how did they become an enemy?

Not really, except maybe myself. I’m my worst enemy.

Would you kill for those you love? And would you die for them?

Yes, that’s why I joined the Sylvanian Academy and yes, if only I could.

Are you involved in a relationship? If so, with who and what is it about them that you find appealing?

My first and current boyfriend is Jes-syd Russom. We got together when we were fifteen. We might get married when we finish our studies. He is a wonderful person and handsome too. He cares for me and makes me feel protected.

What is the biggest challenge you face in the story?

Surviving the destruction of my home-planet, a cosmic accident that wipes out many lives.

Do you have a family? Tell me about them.

My parents and my younger brother Dan-ylo, who is seventeen. My father was an only child, but he surrounded himself with an extended family, my mother ran away from Xi-kong so I don’t know much about that side of the family except that I have a cousin, Kaori Ikagoru, who is in the Galaxy Police.

Please give me an interesting and unusual fact about yourself.

After secondary school was over, I dyed my hair of rainbow colors for a summer.

Star Minds the series (ebooks and paperbacks)

 

Writer Wednesday


Sorry I skipped the Random Friday, but it was a weekend full of excerpts! Hope you enjoyed them and headed to get the bundle from your favorite retailer. It was great sharing the blog with all those great authors. One more author interview to come, then moving on.

Last chance to get Shashank at 4.99$. Tomorrow the price will go up. I also uploaded a Star Minds sampler at 99c for whoever doesn’t know my science fantasy saga and would like a taste of it. The taste is clean, but asย  stated at the end of the sample, some books are adult only. Since they’re standalone, you won’t miss much if you skip a story or a couple of books (namely, read only book 1 of the Trilogy if you want clean stuff and skip one story in Star Minds Snippets).

Unfortunately i-Users won’t be able to try the lovely D2D template I used for this latest ebook, since Apple doesn’t allow “samplers”, “teasers” or other such things, even though they include complete books. So you better grab your e-pub elsewhere! ๐Ÿ˜‰

On all the books at the publisher’s page you will see only one link to the ebooks. That’s because I spent a good part of Sunday and Monday activating the universal links at Books2Read – they’re even geotagged (in fact I deleted all my Booklinker links and won’t be using that account anymore)!

If you want help in setting this useful thingy up, here’s an how to post. Like they say in the FAQs for authors, you should get one even if your enrolled in KU, since the link is geotagged so you don’t need to give all the Amazon stores links or go to bit.ly or other services. Get them even if you don’t have a Draft2Digital account – my vampires books are not on Draft2Digital because only Smashwords allows assetless pre-orders, so I imported them into B2R with the Smashwords link.

Some smaller places would probably have to be added by hand, like DriveThruFiction or (for my Italian titles) Feltrinelli. But there are already 28 stores supported, I’m sure they’ll add more. For example now I have even the WHSmith links on some books, although I admit I have no idea which distributor sends to them! ๐Ÿ˜‰ I even have some books at Angus&Robertson Selling Books to Australians Since 1886! ๐Ÿ˜€

With all this publishing stuff and housekeeping, I’m not writing much, but I intend to catch up next week when I go back to DayJob, LOL! My newsletter went out last week (someone reading this blog hasn’t opened it yet, please check it out, thank you) and already I’m changing my mind on some things.

I mentioned I intended to publish Da Strip, but I won’t, because it’s too personal and funny only for me. So I’ll find something else to fill the pages of my mag. I do want to draw more, but I still have to think about what I’m going to do. I’m definitely slowing down the publishing to concentrate on writing next year.

It will be my 40th anniversary after all! Been married to Mr Writing since the summer of 1978, to the dismay of the prospective boyfriends who had no idea of what was going on, haha! So next year I plan to write more, publish less and read more, since I have all those bundles to catch up on.

Speaking of bundles, this one is going to be fun – starting from the title. Funny by Design will come out on the 13th, but it’s already available for pre-orders at the usual suspects. And look at the company again! So, short summary of the latest bundles (out in November only):

Mythic Tales

Cats Cats Cats

Funny by Design.

The first two both include my book Beautiful, Funny by Design has Pat&Babs, the third and for now last body switch.

Oh, and Axelle, Wanderer is available both in ebook and paperback! Have a great week! ๐Ÿ™‚

 

Writer Wednesday


Star Minds Third Generation Snippets is out! Check the damn Amazon link so the people at Booklinker won’t bother me with useless emails! But it’s available also everywhere else *waves at the gal who already bought it on Smashwords – I know who you are, thank you*! Next weekend I shall work on the paperback version.

The cover is by Mighty Marvelous Maurizio Manzieri – which means I have the same cover as some traditional SFF magazines or books, yay! ๐Ÿ™‚ It might be one of his stock illustrations (it ain’t free, babe), but again I wrote a story that fit it, like I did with S.E.T.H. (on the cover of Star Minds Next Generation Diaries).

Like I do with Techie Bro’s digital paintings. Who needs writing prompts with such great artists out there? ๐Ÿ˜‰ I’m still commissioning custom covers, though. Next month you’ll see the awesome covers Rossana Beretta did for Talwar and Khanda and Saif’sย  Story. And besides doing maybe a cover or two myself, I’ll have Cristina do another southern kingdoms illustration. Not to mention the official cover artist for Vampires Through the Centuries, Shafali Anand! ๐Ÿ™‚

Tomorrow starts a Kobo-only promo – the Books of the Immortals Box Set will be 30%off for a few days. Just hop to the Kobo page and see what other box sets get discounted until the 29th! ๐Ÿ™‚

Lots of writerly links today! David Farland on busting your editor’s chops. Kris Rusch on types of brands – I might not be the best at cover branding yet, but well… too many books, too little time! ๐Ÿ˜‰ I’m still learning cover branding, but that’s only the surface. There’s a whole lot more about branding to study and learn.

And then two posts by David Gaughran about those darn Amazon bots… how we’ll end up asking “please don’t buy my books” and who’s pointing at you. I’ve been on Yasiv when I tried to set up that Amazon ad… some of my titles don’t even come up on Yasiv! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

I mean, even putting a series title like Star Minds not one book of the series shows up. Vampires Through the Centuries brings up only Vampire Diaries. Silvery Earth brings only the Fairy Tales Revisited… And “body switches”? Tons of non-fiction and conspiracy theories and mind-controlling texts!! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

I’ll have to find other ways to find tags for my next Amazon ads. Yasiv clearly doesn’t work for me! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Also, did you hear about the KU advocate being kicked out of KU? Mighty Zon is a dangerous beast! ๐Ÿ™‚

Off to the next story… have a great week! ๐Ÿ˜€

Random Friday


Just wanted to let you know that Starship Pilot with Techie Bro’s illustration Ready for Take-off is now available for the first ten (10) patrons, no matter how much you pledge. So, if youโ€™d like to read it before it comes out in the volume Star Minds Third Generation Snippets, you can become a patron of yours truly and have this neat illustrated preview.

Since I’ve decided to try and write a couple of short stories for submission, following some writing prompts I found on Reddit, and the magazine currently only wants fantasy and no sci-fi, I watched Warcraft that I found at the newsagent’s. I didn’t know it was directed by David Bowie’s son (I love his Moon movie) and I’ve never really played the game (although I know that my WoW (words of wisdom) Sundays used to confuse WoW (Worlds of Warcraft) fans, but I knew nothing of the franchise at the time), so…

It’s a nice fantasy movie… got choked up a couple of times and of course it’s only the beginning (in fact the Italian titles says “Warcraft – the beginning”), so there’s an open ending for sequels. And I was impressed by the CGI, they can really make anything look real!

So if you want to see orcs and gryphons and warriors in shining armor and even “boomsticks” (yes, those pesky guns are everywhere nowadays, haha!) with elves and dwarves, go check this movie – it’s not as long as LOTR (which I haven’t seen yet anyway, nor read the book).

Now I’m back to my publishing stuff… expect a new title soon… Have a great weekend and Happy Easter! ๐Ÿ™‚

Writer Wednesday


Newsletter went out with a coupon for a free download of the latest publication! Now, if you’re a reader and want to be updated on sales and publishing news, you better start subscribing to the publisher blog. These posts will be more and more about writing, and less and less about publishing. So, just saying. The publisher doesn’t post as often as I do, so you won’t be spammed! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Now, summer wordcounts! July I wrote almost 40K, August a little more than 20K. That’s even less than March. That’s less of the translation I did of Ciaran & Harith (I hope to translate Pat & Babs this month, so I can publish the Italian version of Body Switches in October).

Do I feel like a failure? Um, no, actually, I don’t! Yearly wordcount is nearly 331K and even if in October I won’t have much time to write, I’m certain I can get at least to last year’s 400K if not my 500K goal. Writing is still fun. It’s the publishing that is getting tiresome.

And since I’m writing shorter stories at the moment, I can wait to publish them and submit them to traditional markets! By the way, now is a good time to support Fiction River’s Kickstarter drive. In that second campaign they are offering workshops starting in November or after for discounts and some writing books, as well as Fiction River subscriptions.

So if you’d like to take one of those workshops but don’t have the money, you can try to win one. Or if you’d like to learn how to write the other, there’s this upcoming Writing Deaf and Blind Characters Masterclass.

Now, as I finish the current Star Minds collection, I’ll probably change the title when it comes out next year. Instead of Star Minds Interregnum Volume 2 it will be Star Minds Third Generation Snippets, since there are either characters of the original trilogy (not necessarily the protagonists) or the third generation in every story. The events happen thirty years onward after the end of the Trilogy.

One more story to go, plus the Vampires Through the Centuries stories to format for pre-order, and then I’ll be back to Silvery Earth for a few more Quests, hopefully next week. That’s all for today! ๐Ÿ™‚ Have a great week!

Writer Wednesday


So, back to writing those Star Minds Interregnum stories! ๐Ÿ˜‰ I even re-watched Alien Nation, even though the Galaxy Police operates mostly in space, not on the single Star Nations planets… And I’ve done some research on rookie police officers – I’ll have to find a cop who likes sci-fi to beta-read at least one story! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Anyone reading this?

I still have two to write/finish of the six programmed. Probably only a couple are actually submittable, but I’ll send them off to betas when the collection is complete. Like I mentioned, I won’t publish any of them until next year, so I might as well submit them all, since they’re actually short! ๐Ÿ˜‰

One might be the first chapter of a novel, but I’ll write it next year. As soon as I wrap these up, I’ll go back to Silvery Earth and write 3 more Quests. In the meantime I’m doing some PODs, but you’ll have to be patient as I get back into the grove of uploading to Createspace afterย  the summer! ๐Ÿ˜€ Stay tuned for more announcements…

I have updated the useful links for writers page, taking off a couple of things that are no longer relevant and adding how to hire an attorney (not an agent – in fact I deleted all agent-related orย  agent-mentioning links on that page). Even the reference links are updated! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Now I better go back to the writing room… I’m even doing an illustration for Star Minds Interregnum that I won’t be using as e-book cover… will post it on DeviantART when it’s done! The covers of the “double” e-books will be by Dear Bro, and the cover of the volume including print will be by Maurizio Manzieri

Have a great week! ๐Ÿ™‚

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