Archive for January, 2014

In the Spirit of Hugh Howey

Posted: January 24, 2014 in Inspiration
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Just read this inspirational blog post by sci-fi sensation Hugh Howey (aren’t they always inspirational?)called “The Secret to Success.” That piqued my interest immediately since success has always been something I’ve been interested in.

It caused me to get up off my butt and clean my entire apartment. I washed the dishes, made my bed (even though it’s 9:30 at night), and put things in order.

I submitted my files to Amazon to get the Darkness paperback ready, something I’ve been meaning to get to for the last few days.

It even made me write this silly blog post.

The gist is…if there’s something that needs doing, do it. Right now. Don’t wait.

The logic is basic. If there’s something that needs to be done, you’ll have to do it anyway. Might as well do it now and save yourself the stress of having to worry about it later.

I’m going to consciously implement this more into my life. There’s aspect to the book business that are less savory to me (basically, everything that isn’t writing or interacting with fans, but nonetheless important).

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Indie Writing Advice #1: Write Fast

Posted: January 21, 2014 in Writing

I’m thinking of starting a new segment, as it were, where I give writing advice. I know, how vainbut before I go on with this post, I want to say that there are a lot of different paths to the meadow. This is just the one that works for me and how I’ve been successful at writing five books so far in the space of a little over a year – and if I didn’t have a full-time job, I would have written more. I’ll bet there’s some aspiring writers/already writers out there, and if this post can help out, then why not write it?

My first piece of advice is: write fast.

Write fast. Write fast. Write fast. Don’t worry about whether your writing sucks. It probably does. Just give yourself up to that fact. I do. You have to turn off your internal editor/critic. He/she will have a lot to say as long as you give them time to think. But they have ZERO time to think if you write fast enough.

Once you get into that flow of words, just keep writing. You want to get to a point where your fingers never stop. Even if you can’t think of anything to say, just keep going for the sake of not breaking the rhythm. You want your thoughts to be miles ahead of where your fingers are typing, and it’s like your mind and fingers are in a race to connect your thoughts.

The trail of words you’ve left behind might not be the best material, but there will be a lot there you can use when you go back to look at it later. First drafts always, always suck. You can’t nitpick over words/phrases in the beginning. You have to just worry about the story, the excitement, the rush of your characters doing crazy things.

I think it’s particularly important for writers just starting out to write fast. The more words you write, the more practice you get. The more mistakes you make. And the more you see what works. It took me quite a few books before I was comfortable with publishing one. Even if you have a natural talent for writing fiction, it takes a lot of practice and a lot of reading to get there.

You have to love the work. Work on your writing speed, and you will improve greatly as long as you keep at it.

There’s another reason why it’s important to write fast: you can get more books done! From the standpoint on indie publishing, this is key.  It is one of the main advantages indie writers and publishers have over traditionally published competition. Where in traditional publishing it is extremely common to wait a  year (or even years) for a sequel to your favorite series to be released, with indie publishing, authors are often releasing one book every three months. I personally aim to release a book every 2-3 months. Some authors, like Elle Casey, release one book every single month. It’s definitely possible. It’s a myth that you have to spend two years on a book to make it amazing. In fact, I would argue that it’s possible to work too much on a book, like combing one’s hair too much.

Which probably leads me to my second point of writing advice which I will detail later: don’t try too hard. Things became so much easier to me when I stopped worrying about being so artsy and worried about just telling a good story. Especially when you are beginning, this is important. All the art and prettyness of writing can come later when you’ve built some chops. The most important part of writing a good book is telling a good story. That’s your chief concern as a writer and entertainer and the rest is more like spices. The story is the actual meat, the stew.

Alright, well I have to go now. I wrote this entire post in like five minutes. I’m a huge proponent of “Write Fast!”

Extinction Preview

Posted: January 15, 2014 in Uncategorized

Alright. Darkness has been out for about a week. In the meantime, I’ve been devouring books. I’ve read probably four books in the last seven days alone. Currently reading The Wasteland Saga by Nick Cole. Saw it at Barnes & Noble and just had to get it because of the title. It’s been a great read so far. To put it in a nutshell, it’s what post-apocalyptic would look like if Ernest Hemingway had lived long enough to see the rise of the genre.

Despite the title, it’s pretty different from my book and it’s highly recommended reading.

I’m sort of starting on Extinction at the moment. I know how it begins, and how I think it will end, but you never know with these things. It’s been different with every book. Darkness was very hard for me to write for some reason, while Revelation pretty much wrote itself, for example.

I don’t have much of an idea about this one other than it will be long. And epic. There will be much shenanigans had by all.

Here’s what I can tell you for sure (most of which you will have probably surmised). You will see Los Angeles. You will see Carin Black and the Reapers. You will see Askala and the Radaskim grow in power as the final battle sets up between them and the Elekai. Also, there will be two major twists, one in the beginning of the book, and one at the very, very end, that, if all goes well, is liable to make heads explode.

Right now it feels like this book will be over 100,000 words long. I hope that turns out to be the case because I want something really epic for this one.

I’ve been pretty busy of late, making it hard to find time for writing. I plan on working on it hard this weekend and I can hardly wait for Saturday to get here.

Darkness Out!

Posted: January 7, 2014 in Uncategorized

Hey guys –

Darkness at last has come out! You can pick it up on Kindle at this link.

Thanks so much for waiting and happy reading!

Update

Posted: January 6, 2014 in Uncategorized

I’ve re-posted this from my Facebook:

“Here’s the update: the book is pretty much in its final form. I’ve added an additional 10,000 words, but the problem is my usual copy-editor is backlogged and can’t get to it for two weeks. No bueno. I could release now, but there are likely quite a few typos/grammar issues that my eyes simply cannot catch and I will not release the book like that. There comes a point where you’ve read your words so many times that you only see what you want to see.

At this moment I am seeking speedy copy-editing elsewhere as I simply cannot wait two weeks for the book to be out, especially after you all have been so patient. Thank you again for all of your patience! I’m sorry there have been so many snafus and kinks, and hopefully I will have a final answer for when the book will be out. A copy-editor is hard to find!”

My hope is that the book will be out in no more than a few days. As I said in the post, I could release now, but I know from experience that it is very bad to release a book before it’s been looked at by a professional. Yes, it has been copy-edited once, but there are still those 10,000 extra words there that have not been looked at by a professional copy-editor. I just don’t want to risk mistakes.

Thanks for your patience and understanding. It should be out soon.