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!

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I wrote 15K in five days, and spent the weekend setting up another bundle, uploading another title, and setting up my series pages on Amazon. So this week I can announce TWO new titles! πŸ™‚

The first is the “middle book” of the Vampires Through the Centuries meets Future Earth Chronicles “trilogy”. On the cover is Ishaq, although he’s described as looking like Oded Fehr in The Mummy, but unfortunately I couldn’t put that on the cover! πŸ˜€ But the guy has a beard and is not too bloody. Ishaq is a fledgling of Arianrhod, Bran’s sister-in-darkness.

Ishaq ibn Tariq is an 8th-century Berber warrior under the Umayyad Caliphate. After his latest pilgrimage around the Mediterranean, he meets an old mortal acquaintance who introduces him to Rainbow Towns, the perfect places for a vampire to spend the years of the mortals apocalypse. Hidden underground settlements with 21st century smart-homes can allow vampires to spend a decade or three in comfort. Until they become prisons.
Alain is a 20th-century hacker with Asperger syndrome. With his girlfriend, he goes through the end of the Technological Revolution of the 21st century by finding refuge in Rainbow Town, where time seems to stop. They can’t go out, unless Alain remembers his way to the Darknet.
Bonus story: One Who Cannot Be Destroyed. Achyutam tries to get his wife back through the centuries, if only the damn western bloodsuckers didn’t always ruin his plans.

Now, that bonus story is also included in Nightly Bites Volume 3, that you should definitely check out, because 1) it’s longer than the previous two and 2) it has flash fiction and novellas and short stories, so a much wider variety compared to the first two! πŸ™‚ So check it out and give some love to my fellow authors who wrote great stories!

I am also setting up a limited time bundle on BundleRabbit after a long time. I was spurred by another curator who took out my book from his bundle because “could not find an email on your website to communicate with you” (which prompted me to modify the Contact Me page) when he had already received my acceptance.

You see, there’s a forum on BundleRabbit, where curators can communicate with whoever is in their bundle or collaboration. I had to withdraw a request for my latest bundle (it’s the 4th, in case your wondering) because that author indeed had no way to contact him by email to prod him into accepting the request.

His contact page said to leave a public comment and had no link to send him a private email – which is what I did with another author who promptly wrote back with questions. That other curator? He could have made a post in his bundle’s section and asked we sent him an email for private communications off site. Sigh.

Anyhow, still working out a couple of things for that bundle, so I’m not announcing it yet. Do check the above books, though. November is definitely the vampires month! πŸ™‚ As for December, I’ll publish the Star Minds Universe box sets and that’s it for this year.

The new titles in the Future Earth Chronicles (or Before) will come out next year. Writing the last sequel right now, I should be done by the end of the month, so I can send it over to the editor in December.

Sunday was mostly housekeeping, setting up those series on Amazon and working on Da Strip with the umpteenth change that might push us older users out of social media for good, LOL!

The only good thing about the new Author Central is that they took off the unpublished books, so those ugly old covers finally vanished. I did compire the survey, though, since when you add another book, it shows up ten times, and not just when it’s a multi-authors title. Even Through the Centuries showed up 10 times. If enough people tell them how dumb it has become, maybe they’ll revert, won’t they?

Wishful thinking, I know. On Sunday I went to upload the strip and SURPRISE! Instagram changed stuff around too! To add a MARKETPLACE! Gee, I know everybody buys online with lockdown and coronavirus and everything, but damn it, if all social media become virtual stores, I’m out of here!

Also the fonts are so tiny to be unreadable (for my ageing eyes) on the phone, and you can’t post stuff from laptop. End rant of a Gen-Xers who is sick of those subtle changes for you youngsters who still have good eyes (but you’ll ruind them faster than I ever did if this trend continues)!

Sunday night I rewatched Kites because it was “movies where the protag dies at the end” weekend. I hadn’t watched for more than 2 years, since before the WMG workshops moved from Lincoln City to Vegas.

I have seen Las Vegas in 1994 (the Strip only) and 2009 (our guide took us to the Freemont Experience), but it was touristic one-night stays during group tours. So it was fun rewatching the movie while being familiar with Freemont Street – and I even spent one night at the Plaza last February! πŸ™‚

So it was lika a dΓ©jΓ  vu, like when I watch Ocean’s 11 (even though I never slept at the Bellagio), and so NOT like 1994! πŸ™‚ Speaking of which, a lovely penfriend (remember those?) whom I met quite often through the years, just sent me old pictures of Mark Slaughter (the reason for my expedition in Vegas back in 1994), which, along with rewatching their first home video from 1990 or 1991 makes for another wonderful throwback! πŸ™‚

Ending with this throwback picture of a former Muse and hoping we all get to travel again in the near future, I wish you a wonderful week! πŸ™‚

 

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week by Saturday I had almost 17K (and another short story to throw in the last batch of Star Minds stories), so I took a break during the weekend, also to get on with the strip. By Week 23 I already reached 250K (of 500K for those who arrived later), so whenever I’ll be able to travel again and I’ll skip a week, I won’t have to worry about reaching my goal! πŸ˜‰

I also cleaned up this very blog, in case you didn’t notice. I had already changed the blog description to My Name – Writer, now I cleaned out all those very unprofessional pages at the top. Doesn’t it look better like this? No? Oh, well. The free anthos are still there, if you want to read them. And there’s a neat clean page of links to the other books (and if you’re a reader, you might want to follow the publisher’s page, it gets updated only with new releases or sales announcements).

And welcome new followers, for whatever reason you subscribed to this blog feed! πŸ™‚ Just be warned I will ramble a lot – but at least it’s only once a week, LOL! Almost like a weekly newsletter! πŸ˜€

I cleaned up also my DeviantART page before closing the account… I don’t know when yet. But I took down more than half of the art I had uploaded there. I cursed them a whole afternoon while doing it. Glad that WordPress’s updates are much more discreet and I’m not forced to use them (yet!)…

And I finished coloring the current strip! Below is a wordless strip, the rest is coming on Instagram, every Sunday as usual! Star Minds Kids and Teens will also have a prose version for the visually impaired, like Silvery Earth Kids.

Kol-ian and Toybot finish the homework and go to play in the park, climbing a tree

I got the new Kindle along with a couple of paperbacks, and I already hate it. It does have airplane mode, but otherwise it’s constantly on wi-fi. It’s a hassle to turn pages on lists and I turned off the front light (since I have a Kindle for the e-ink, not for the built-in front light. I’m not reading in the dark). I might have gotten used to touch screens since 2011, but I still prefer KK.

In fact, I downloaded a couple samples on KK, and eventually I’ll synch the New Kindle (that shall not have a name, sgrunt!). My own mobi files go on the New Kindle, along with the bundles and other books I got from elsewhere, since KK can still connect to the Amazon store, but the cable doesn’t connect it to the laptop anymore, so I can only download stuff from Amazon and not add other books like I used to. Sigh.

I still have quite a few books to read on KK anyway, so the New Kindle will stay offline until I’m done with that. Then I’ll synch it and start using it, possibly next year, giving how fast (read: slow!) I am at reading ebooks! πŸ˜€

As for the paperbacks, one is Snow Glass Apples by Neil Gaiman and Colleen Doran, a highly recommended graphic novel, a Snow White retelling with luscious artwork. I love all of Colleen’s works, and the pairing with Neil Gaiman is awesome. The other paperback is non-fiction and I haven’t started it yet…

I reworked the blurb and cover for The Fern and The Cross, go check it out! I hope I made it better, not worse, LOL! A special thanks to Anna Lowenstein for the consultations on the blurb (and correcting my mistakes) and Joleene Naylor for the consultations on the cover and introducing me to That Group.

I left the old cover on the book page (like I did for Brainwaves) because I think the old cover was more faithful to the history and the character, but if the new one sells… readers should get what they want! πŸ˜€

See how the right one has the heraldry of FougΓ¨res and the flat-topped helmet and that crusader look? But comments said it wasn’t clear what it was about, so I changed pictures (there was the color version of the first one) and decided to forego historical accuracy…

Now I’ll have to update the banners, both here and on the publisher’s page… but I’m waiting for the Future Earth Chronicles cover reveal and possibly other new covers! πŸ™‚

Now I better get back to writing and wrap Book 8 and 9… I still have Book 10 to start and finish in two weeks, yikes!

Some Kickstarters worth checking:

Ask Jericho: To Die For by Bonnie Elizabeth Koenig.

Despot: Science Fiction and Fantasy Anthology by Van Alrik. This is an anthology that is trying something new with the editing side of things. It is matching by computer stories to classic author’s styles and forms. Read it to understand what he is doing.

The Cold Poker Gang by Dean Wesley Smith. This is trying to get the series into hardback and to give readers and fans an early look at the new novel. It also has workshops and some good stretch goals. It has now funded and gone past two stretch goals and gaining on a third with about eight days left

One laat link this week, something that was shared in the Italian version by one of my FB friends. The Human Library. Now I’m pondering if I could be a book in this library or should try to read some titles before applying… Have a great week!

Random Friday


Okay, I had to share this because I think it’s too cute. I’ll try to do also a 2020 Silvery Earth Kids Calendar, it will be available with the strip paperback. Meanwhile, here’s a preview with the (unedited) prose version for the visually impaired underneath.

Torik’s New Clothes

Torik got out of bed, washed his face, then grabbed his clothes. He put on his breeches and realized that not only the looked shorter than usual, but also he had trouble making them fit around his waist. Even his tunic looked kind of small for him.

“Mooom! My clothes have shrunk!” he complained.

“No, honey, you’ve grown up,” she replied patiently from the other side of the room. “You need new ones.”

“Oh.” Torik stared at his clothes, disappointed. He tried to squeeze in them anyway, and then checked his boots.

“My boots have shrunk too!” he whined.

“Wear sandals until we get you new ones,” his mother replied.

It was summer, after all. Although going to the forest with sandals wasn’t the best option.

Muttering under his breath, Torik laced on his sandals. They were kind of short too, but at least they didn’t squeeze his feet. The clothes were really uncomfortable, though.

“Can’t move, can’t breathe…” he grumbled.

“Here, take Dad’s old tunic for today,” his mother said, handing him the garment

Torik eagerly took off his own clothes and threw them on the bed. Dad’s tunic was so big, his hands vanished inside the long sleeves and it reached well below his knees. He could go out without breeches, though.

Feeling slightly ridiculous, Torik got ready for the day. Luckily he was spared wood-cutting and his mother took him to the tailor’s shop and then to the shoemaker.

Random Friday


Let’s make it Art Friday! Sunday I spent some time brainstorming with myself, so I made another pencil portrait of Da Muse. And then, since I was thinking about Patreon a lot, I made a strip only for my page.

This will be free anyway, so I can post it here too. I asked my Facebook friends for feedback on that Patreon page, but got no comments. Meh. I’ll become anti-social media soon! 😦 They “like” the things I don’t care about and don’t bother when I ask for feedback or advice. Tsk.

I will freely admit that working on that Patreon page was fairly distracting throughout the week, but well… it’s done. We’ll see how it goes. Comes the weekend I’ll still be busy with that Patreon page (scheduling April’s posts and rewards) and with uploads (another ebook) and with writing the next story.

Hopefully by then I will go faster – the beginning is trickier because I didn’t cover it in other stories, so I have to make it up as I go along (meaning I need to check which towns were actually available at the end of the 10th century, and what the situation was like, and so on and so forth – so the beginning was slower for this reason). Perks of writing historical fantasy! πŸ˜‰

Have a great weekend! πŸ™‚

Random Friday


Let’s make it Art Friday!

bob_by_creativebarbwire-dacnrn0

Like I say on DeviantART, this should have been a cover. I did it and brainstormed the story, but then ended up not using it (I have a better painting by someone else) and will probably describe the characters differently anyway. Or maybe I’ll write their story too. Or maybe it was just practice.

It did help brainstorming the next story while coloring it! πŸ˜‰ But now I’ll have to improvise and the guys in the story probably will not look like this. And it’s another light Star Minds Interregnum story, then I’ll probably write another dark one – again, to alternate, haha!

All these stories are short enough to submit them to traditional markets, so don’t expect any of them before 2017. I might not submit them all, but some definitely! πŸ˜‰ I still have 3 Quests books and 2 Vampires Through the Centuries stories to publish along with a couple (make it 4) more collections, so I’m covered until December.

Rambling too much, so here’s to the end of Art Friday – refers to that story that made me cry when I wrote it.

crying4blogAnd to end on a colorful note: DeviantART’s birthday celebrated.

deviantart-16-4blog

Last but not least – The horrible hidden truth about self-publishing to keep you thinking until I come back… and get back to writing! πŸ˜€ Have a great weekend! πŸ™‚

Sunday Surprise


oh, looky, it’s a holiday – one of those I so love to totally ignore! πŸ˜‰ So for me it’s just another Sunday. And for those like me, here’s my strip (it’s from last year, when it fell on a Saturday) about this day!

valentineAnother advocate of a year-round thing is the talented IssaArts, as you can see. I hired her to make me a personalized travel diary. Stay tuned to see the results. In the meantime, enjoy her valentine.

drawing by Issa Arts

drawing by Issa Arts

Have a great Sunday! πŸ˜€

Writer Wednesday


Before I vanish into offline-land (but don’t worry, there are scheduled posts coming), a recap!

FirebirdDTFWriting! Beautiful is off to betas so I can send it to mighty editor in early November. I’m quite happy with it (of course, it’s the latest baby!) because I’ve put in stuff that I usually don’t mention. Like favorite food and pets.

Publishing! Firebird is now out on all retailers. It’s a Silvery Earth novella, I thought it was time to leave the Star Minds universe for now! πŸ™‚

Draving! S.K.Y.B.A.N.D. 15 is also out as single issue on DriveThruComics. In November you’ll get the Omnibus 3 and the whole graphic novel – the latter also in print, so you might want to wait! Aaand…

100I guess it’s self-esplanatory! πŸ˜‰ Not sure yet when I’ll publish them, though. And will start working on the alternative ending of Rajveer the Vampire as next drawing project.

Some writerly links to last you for the next two weeks – maybe more! πŸ™‚ Grab your writing planner at Writing World! I used it this year for the first time and it’s great! I jot down daily wordcounts, to-do things, ideas and for 2016 there’s even the submission sheets included!

Dealing with Success by Devyani Borade. Author Earnings… again by Kristine Kathryn Rusch. Which brings us to explore Tolino – a reminder there’s not just the US market now. Take me. I sell all over the place. All over the world. And an “old” (last August) post on social media snake oil – or what should you beware when marketing on social media.

Oh, and if you want to support a Kickstarter project, my cover artist and webmaster Silvano has this Dark Steam Tales up for funding… I didn’t do the translations on that one – I’m working on Evo-Z (so if the translation of Evo-Z are clunky you know who to blame)! πŸ˜‰ Oh, and if you want to read Evo-Z or back up this other project… one day the guy might be working on my project! πŸ˜€

I’m going to a non-writing vacation, but to keep you inspired whil I’m away, here’s the last link: 21 quotes to reignite your passion for writing! Me? Don’t need them. I already know I’ll be itching to write the next story when I come back. And that’s why I don’t do NaNoWriMo… I write all year long – not every day, but all year long! πŸ˜‰

Wishing you a happy week and end of the month… Will be back after Halloween! Have fun! πŸ˜€

Sunday Surprise


Should have been artworks, but there’s only one new upload on DeviantART (although it’s two drawings, done last weekend). Been watching old movies and writing and reading, so… no more pencil portraits for now. So Thus I’m posting the “summary” of 2013 and how I got to doing a strip. These strips are done copy-pasting from Superdeformed Threesome Millennium, included in 15 years of Creative Barbwire – all from 2013! Enjoy.

summary

Random Friday


barbDear Hrithik,

since you inspired me a lot in the past couple of years (or more), I thought I’d share, hoping to inspire you…

First of all, thank you for finally giving a face to Kol-ian’s gorgeous brother-in-law Ker-ris Shermac! There is a fleeting mention that he looks like you in Book 3 – Slave Traders. Considering that he was a very secondary character in the original version of Book 1 – Technological Angel, thank you for inspiring me both in Star Minds the Trilogy and its prequel/companion Star Minds Snippets. I even pulled out two snippets about Ker-ris in Mind Control. That was 2012.

2013 – second body switch, Ciaran&Harith. I had a lot of fun writing this. I could see the movie! You’d probably hate Harith, but I could easily write a screenplay for that (besides, the most naughty stuff is on Ciaran). A challenging role (two people in the same body), but well… if I can’t have the movie with my original virtual cast, I don’t want it to be a movie! πŸ˜‰

WotFcertificate_resize2014 – I won Honorable Mention at Writers of the Future contest with The Hooded Man – a mix between Robin Hood and Zorro in an Indian-like setting (it’s my fantasy world, heavily India-and-Persia-inspired). He’s even called Hrithikesh (but it’s not set in India, I swear, it’s a fantasy world!).

2015 – you can look forward to Rajveer the Vampire, born in Chittorgarh in AD 1274 and turned into a bloodsucker two years before the first jahuarΒ (AD1303) – at the time of beautiful Rani Padmini… And he stays mostly in northern India for most of his long life!

Most of these characters are actually younger than you are now, but who cares? Hope I inspired you as much as you inspired me. Now stop the selfies and go back to work.

And if you’re looking for ideas for Krrish4, I can make you both the good and the bad (and without spending 3hours a day in makeup department) – someone else suggested a very negative role for you, who’s better than Bad Krrish? πŸ˜‰

p.s. on that topic, your son seems ready to play Krishna’s son in Krrish4… just sayin’! πŸ™‚

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