Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Since I’m well into that book 2 of the trilogy, last week I wrote 13.5K words, which brought my yearly total to almost 260K. Still behind since we’re past half the year, but I can still catch up. And if I don’t, I don’t care. The next project might be a novel, or it might be a series of short stories. I haven’t decided yet.

And I also want to write more stories to some themes so I can put out a few more short story collections before the end of the year. The publisher’s newsletter is coming soon, you can subscribe by entering your email on the home page.

This is also the last week of the Smashwords sale, everything 50% off (except titles at 99c and the two latest), so hurry. It ends on Saturday!

I have ordered the paperbacks of the latest two titles, but unless they deliver them a day early like they did for the previous ones, they won’t make it into this post. Very busy mornings at work with special thanks to this lovely pandemic, so I hope to have some energy to keep writing!

I won’t bore you on how Roman buses make it even worse by not showing up or having you wait for 35minutes. I can do that on foot in 20minutes, but at lunchtime it’s really tough. When they show up on time, it takes me thirty minutes (10 minutes first bus, get to the other bus stop in 10 minutes, 10 minutes second bus) to do those 5km, when they don’t, they don’t. One hour or more in total.

There, I said it, I bored you! 😉 But you have one more reason why I want to move away from this town. A colleague suggested I get a two-wheels, but I used one for twelve years and that was almost twenty years ago and I’m not young enough anymore, especially on the Roman streets, famous for the “sanpietrini” and its holes (that can be deadly on a scooter). And my almost-26-year-old car is ready to retire, so… buses.

But then, without those buses, I wouldn’t have come up with the idea of the ghost bus, so… whatever! 😀 Have a great summer!

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


A bundle so packed full of fantasy,
you’ll need a bag of holding.

Over twenty authors have joined the International Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Authors (IASFA) in a massive book bundle to enchant readers everywhere.

IASFA Book Bundles are a way for people to discover quality books written by popular authors. You know how it’s always hard to find something good to read? IASFA can help solve that with monthly free book promotions as well as through a massive Book Bundle like this.

https://20bookpacks.com/IASFA-Fantasy-Bundle

The Fantasy Book Bundle! Discover fantastic worlds where princesses are assassins, elves cavort with dragons, and orphans aren’t always what they seem. From enchanted forests to perilous seas, there’s an adventure for everyone in these stories. Find your next favorite fantasy author in this fantastic bundle. We’ve compiled over twenty exciting titles and can offer them in a bundle for much less than a dollar each. Begin your epic fantasy adventure today.

Books included:

Truth and Other LiesBy Lyra Wolf
The Blood Stone: Curse of the Drakku Book OneBy Jason Nugent
MercenaryBy Catherine Banks
The Glass GargoyleBy Marie Andreas
Unbreakable FuryBy Kevin McLaughlin
Reecah’s FlightBy Richard H. Stephens
Book of the Immortals – AirBy Barbara G.Tarn
Fenzig’s Fortune: A Gnome’s TaleBy Jean Rabe
FairmistBy Todd Fahnestock
Creature Feature: A Horrid comedyBy Steven Paul Leiva
Sanctum: Sands of SeteshBy C.S. Kading
The Stones of ResurrectionBy Tameri Etherton
Bone TradersBy Rachel Ford
The Shape of DarknessBy D. Fischer
Dragon’s ChoiceBy Debbie Mumford
The Crimson ClaymoreBy Craig A. Price Jr.
Half-Bloods RisingBy J.T. Williams
By the PactBy Joanna Maciejewska
The Shadow and the SunBy Monica Enderle Pierce
Black Heart of the Dragon GodBy Craig Martelle
Sharp SteelBy William Alan Webb
The Watchers of Moniah Blade of DissensionBy Barbara V. Evers By M. Telsch-Williams

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/

The Fantasy Book Bundle will be available from April 19th thru May 9th.

***

And we’re back to your scheduled program! That was the big announcement, you can get Books of the Immortals – Air very cheaply and along with all those wonderful authors if you still haven’t read it! Go check out that awesome bundle! 🙂

Last week I wrote less than 5K, again, but life is really getting in the way. I don’t want to talk about it, but whenever I’ll be able to quite that part-time day job, I might finally reach the pulp speed I’m trying to aim for. If you have no idea of what I’m babbling about, here’s some history for you, part one and part two. There’s even a meme on Facebook about the maths of doing it.

As you might be aware, I reached half-pulp speed in 2018 and have been keeping it since, but I still hope to increase the output. Reading those two posts was helpful to remind me I don’t need a beta-reader or three because I’m experimenting with a new genre. My trusted Mighty Editor and Proofreader already provides any feedback I might need.

So I might be writing less than usual this month, but I know I will catch up eventually. I can write 3K-5K a day if I set my mind to it. Doing it every day with everything going on in the world is clearly not possible right now, but eventually I’ll be able to train myself to do it.

Still, 145K words in almost four months are down. The Duology is helping me to deal with the pandemic, adding some magic to a dreadful world. I’m having trouble with older protagonists to put on the covers, though – I can’t find them anywhere on Depositphoto, so I’ll have to improvise.

I know that “a work is Urban Fantasy if it has a half-naked woman on the cover, and Paranormal Romance if it has a half-naked man on the cover.” (from TV Tropes) I know that mid-rifs for women or abs for men are a must, but if you have older protagonists (Generation X in one case, Millennials in the other), I don’t think they’d want to be represented as half-naked heroes or heroines in their twenties. Because none of us is in their twenties anymore (okay, some millennials are still in their late twenties, but the rest of us is not).

Since designing covers is the only thing I like about publishing, I’ll keep tinkering with them, since there’s no hurry to publish them. And I hope there are readers out there for fully adult protagonists dealing with magic in our cities. I still aim for an October publication, but I’m still world-building and I need to take another break from these characters.

The Portals Collection workshop starts soon, and I need to write a couple more Star Minds stories to close an era. Probably, LOL! I thought I was done last year when I published the box sets! 😉 But then I’ll get back to the Duology and then a new series that popped into mind and for which I already have the perfect covers.

Did I mention I like tinkering with covers and making mock-ups? Maybe I should start making premades instead of trying to get into translations! 😀 We’ll see…

Now go grab that awesome fantasy bundle and have a great week!

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


And, as announced, the first book of the prequels is out! Alien Humans (Before Future Earth Chronicles Book 1) is a short novel or a novella (too short for a Bookbub New Release alert, so you won’t hear about it there) that tells of the arrival of the aliens and their human symbionts on Earth, and that’s Dinniel the cyborg on the cover. Guest stars, some well known (to who ever follows Vampires Through the Centuries) vampires! 🙂 Actually Dinniel meets Alain, and you can read about him for free here.

Sometimes in the early 1980s an alien starship in the form of a silver disk landed on the Tibetan plateau, ready to settle on Earth. The two alien species living in symbiosis discover the local intelligent life is identical to the weak link of their bond, the humans who feed their brainwaves to the actual owners of the starship.

Meet Dinniel, Dachie, Sepideh and Pajtim, who are in their twenties and must learn to communicate and mingle with Terrans. And then the apocalypse generation, born on Earth and integrated in the 21st century culture: Jael, Dariox, Dayana and Donna who falls in love with Daniel the vampire.

Last week I reached 5800 words and had to stop, research and read for a professional anthology project. Then I started on the new assignment with another  2300 words, so the grand total is around 8K. I guess that, since I have stopped working on that project, I will use the rest of the month to write for another couple of anthologies. The current WiP (novel) was changing under me with every new scene, so it will probably need more time to come to life!

I might as well get the other things out of the way first, but this year is probably the sci-fi and urban fantasy year. At least it feels so for now. We’ll see. I’m not berating myself for anything and just keep trudging forward, waiting for the dust to settle and see what the world will be like in the coming years.

Hopefully not like in the Before Future Earth Chronicles, since you know those years will lead to the apocalypse of western civilization! 🙂 And the series page is updated, by the way. Although on Amazon I added them as prequels, so they won’t appear on the main series page just yet. But on the publisher’s page and Smashwords, they’ll be there! 🙂

And there are free books again! This month it’s Epic Fantasy! Go check them! Who knows, maybe at some point there will be one of mine… probably towards the end of the year! 😉

I’m supposed to check on trains and other real life stuff, but the weather is so dreadful that I’m kind of happy to go home and write, LOL! Now I better go back to work and finish and mail the latest short… Have a great week! 🙂

Sunday Surprise


And it’s the last guest of the year! From the West Coast of the U.S. of A. please welcome Melania Tolan!

Where do you live and write from?

Portland, Oregon, USA

Why do you write?

Good Question… to clear my head, therapy, keep sane, because I love it!

When did you start writing?

Over ten years ago, when my husband told me to start writing all the crazy stories in my head instead of telling them to him. And then he bought me a laptop.

What genre(s) do you write?

Urban Fantasy mostly, but have some contemporary NA romance in the works.

What does your writing routine consist of?

Oh boy, I wish I had a better routine. Mostly, I write when I can as I’m a mother and also work a full-time non-writing job. Either I get up around 3-4am in the morning, work-out for 15 min, make Irish Breakfast tea, and then write for an hour before I have to get my daughter up for school and start my other job. OR I wait about 30 minutes after my daughter goes to bed and write until 9pm.

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

I think my biggest strength is world-building, at least this is what I’ve heard from the editors I’ve worked with and reader’s feedback. I see these fantastic worlds and beautiful creatures in my head like a live 3d movie and then I have to know why does this place exist? When I write, I feel like I’m there and I’ve developed this ability by practice, practice, practice. Before I published my first fantasy short story three years ago, I’d already written over 1 million words.

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

Nature is my muse. Whenever I get stuck in a plot or feel like I’ve written myself into a corner, I go hiking or outside for a walk. The fresh air clears my head and the increased blood flow to my head which helps me work through story and get it back on track. Plus I live in the Pacific Northwest where the hiking is pretty spectacular.

My other source of inspiration is movies. I love fantasy movies like Lord of the Rings or Underworld, but then I can binge on Hallmark movies all weekend too.

Outliner or improviser? Fast or slow writer?

I have tried to outline, but still end up improvising. Part of the joy of writing for me is figuring out what is going to happen next while I’m writing. If I know too much ahead of time, it kills the story for me. And my writing speed is relative. I get about 3-4 books written in a year, which for some that seems insane while others think that is too slow.

Tell us about your latest book

The Witch’s Sword is book 4 in the Silver Witch Chronicles. In this book, Everly Greene must complete her final mission, retrieving a magical sword that once belonged to an elven princess. She travels into the dangerous Otherworld where she faces elves who have other ideas. She is an abomination which they must kill and their magic is FAR more powerful…

Indie publishing or traditional publishing – and why?

Indie all the way. I want to be able to control when the books come out, the covers, the contents, and the pricing. Also I love working independently and not being pressured by a publisher’s deadline.

Any other projects in the pipeline?

Book 5! I’m currently writing the yet to be titled final book in the Silver Witch Chronicles and hoping to get it out in April of 2020. Then I have another witch trilogy coming late Fall 2020, with a couple of projects in between.

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

My goal is to write better stories that have all the feels and the way I achieve this is by reading books with stories that I love and writing more. I’ve taken so many classes on craft and read craft books, but really the best way I learn is by doing. The more I write the better I get.

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

Like the Nike logo says “Just Do It!” Seriously, though… stop talking about writing and how great this story idea is that you have, sit your butt down and write it. It’s not going to be perfect, but keep writing.

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