Tag Archives: writing links

Sunday Small Talk

So I was lucky enough to get in on Dreamspinner’s Kiss a Ginger sale. Temple, one of my three demon hunters in 1930s Pittsburgh is a lovely redheaded bisexual (who sadly has some big trust issues among other things like PTSD not that they had that word for it in 1930). Not only is the sale going well for that one but also for the other Soldiers of the Sun series books. In fact DSP is having a 30% off sale on top of this one so now is a great time to get something of mine!

soldiers-of-the-sun
Here’s the blurb to Soldiers of the Sun (which you can find at that link)

BlurbCaleb Davies and Agni Pradesh are worried about their teammate and lover, Temple Chevalier. Not only has he lost his long-time partner, Fu Li, but he nearly died fighting a demon himself. Also, Temple isn’t sure he’s ready for a new teammate after Li. Caleb and Agni are even more concerned that their three-way relationship with Temple exists less because he loves them and more because he’s hiding from the pain of Li’s loss.

1932 shapes up to be a terrible year for the Soldiers as they welcome the New Year fighting demons and then end up investigating a case that pairs them up with the Knights Templar. This would normally be a good thing, but it forces Temple to face his painful past. Worse yet, the case leads right to Astaroth, a Prince of Hell, who might prove to be an unbeatable foe.

I’ve started looking at some of my finished short stories and novellas as I try to find them homes. The first time I opened the one set in Cassadaga I found it was shorter than I thought but upon reopening it today either I had found a very old version or Word glitched. It’s not 12K but 21K which means it’s long enough for a few things. I might send it off to an anthology looking for summer heat (it is in Florida). Unfortunately the solarpunk anthology is very specifically winter and my story hinges on it being autumn. Ah well, the search continues. The deadwood one is just under 15K

And here’s the thing, I don’t see me expanding them to novella length to sell on their own. I actually DID that with Cassadaga when people were asking for 20K to be the lower limit but now it’s 30K. These stories would probably just end up being bloated and not up to snuff if I tried expanding them (also mentally it’s hard to expand something that feels DONE. So I’m on the lookout for solarpunk, shifter and urban fantasy/paranormal open calls.

I appreciate that DSP has their Christmas open call already up. It’s snowing as I type and that put me in the mood way better than I’d be if this was June like half the holiday open calls are. I think I’ll take another stab at that. Wish me luck.

And now some writing links Hopefully I hadn’t shared all of these before (Bookbaby is definitely recycling links at this point)

Things I Wish I Had Known Before Self-Publishing My Book

Words That Carry Maximum Weight: Tropes In Storytelling

The Importance of Setting In Your Story
I’m big on this one

Five Things You Need As You Begin A Career As A Self-Published Author

How To Read, Edit, and Evaluate Your Writing With Fresh Eyes

New Novelist? Plan Your 2019

Author Incomes: Not Great, Now or Then

Rest for Success & Why Busy is Seriously Overrated

Want Authorly Superpowers? Build a Street Team!

4 Things You Should Know Before You Quit Writing Your Novel

The Different Types of Editing Explained

Six Reasons the Fire Nation Is Such a Good Villain This is good!

Six Common Wordcraft Mistakes in Manuscripts guilty so guilty

PODCAST
204 – Bad Wordcraft Devices
Soldiers of the Sun

Sunday Small Talk

A few years back I was talking with Shira Anthony at a conference and she said something along the lines of writing contemporary LGBT romances allowed her to write the genre SF/F/UF sorts (I should mention this was an anime con and all of us there are obviously genre fans).

For me this was a few novels ago and didn’t quite have the experience yet to appreciate that statement. I do now, though the reality of it makes me a little sad. For example, Blood Red Roulette (urban fantasy, vampires) took me years, I poured my heart into it. I wish I could say it is selling like gangbusters but it’s not where I’d like it to be (I’m surprised a little by it given the gorgeous cover and that vampires tend to be popular). On the other hand, Purrfect Holiday, my contemporary short story is selling very well.

That statement from the con reverberates in my head. Contemporary romance is what sells. Granted I knew this but it has taken a long while for me to realize just how much better it sells. That’s where my sadness comes in. Unlike some of my genre-loving friends, I don’t also like contemporary fiction much.

There is an old writing chestnut that we’ve all heard of ‘write what you know’ which most of us have changed to ‘write what you love’ (because if you love it, you’ll research it and then you’ll know it). This is where my problem begins. I don’t love contemporary romance so it makes it hard for me.

It’s difficult to write a contemporary romance to give you something in the bank while you write your genre novel when you don’t love it. Short stories are easy enough but to do something longer, you have to love it or it will show.

It’s an uncomfortable feeling for me. I wish I could be easier with writing contemporary fiction, that I could learn to like it more. I’ve tried. I’ve read it by my favorite genre authors but even liking the author hasn’t helped. It’s just not in my field of interest.

So I guess that just leaves me one avenue: to write what I love and to buy and help promote what I love so the other authors who write it can have a little more success of their own.

And maybe from the contemporary shorts I do write, maybe I’ll find readers who will be willing to take a chance on my genres down the road.

In the meantime, have some writing links
The Significance of Setting (I’ve talked about this one myself)

17 Literary Podcasts to Ease Your Commute

My 20-Step Plan to Writing a Book: Part 1 (Steps 1-10) (I’ve noticed that Bookbaby is starting to recycle their links a lot so I don’t have that many new ones to share)

And from my friend:

How to Promote Your Book for Free (much of it is newsletter related but I’m not so sure that works well. I honestly don’t read 90% of the ones I get).

Writer Jay Odjick with some words of advice to his 19-year-old self

The Inner/Outer Balance

Questions to Consider When Plotting a Scene I really like this one.

Trends For Authors And Creative Goal Setting 2019

A Field Guide to Six Infectious YA Clichés

Sunday Small Talk

Somehow it’s the end of the year and it doesn’t seem real. So many people had a terrible year and if I look at the political crap we all had it bad here in the states. Personally, however, it was a fantastic year for me. I became a full professor. I took a bucket list trip to the Canadian maritimes. I published a novel Blood Red Roulette, one that I’ve held near and dear to me for over 20 years (In case you missed it –
blood-red-roulette
Blurb Arrigo Giancarlo’s friends think he’s a rich young man with the unusual job of paranormal investigator, working with his psychic assistant in Las Vegas. In truth he’s a two-thousand-year-old vampire and member of the Chiaroscuro, a group of Supernaturals dedicated to keeping humanity safe from the more dangerous of their kind. He’s also openly bisexual… but alone.

When he spots Luc St. John in a bar, Arrigo is intrigued. What begins as an effort to repay the kindness shown to him in the past quickly turns into much deeper feelings for the suffering and displaced Cajun. For Luc’s part, he feels too poor, too uneducated, and too bound to his hateful family to ever be worthy of elegant and cultured Arrigo.

An old enemy, Eleni, blames Arrigo for murdering her true love. On the anniversary of that death, she’s back to take revenge. As Arrigo’s closest friends fall victim to savage attacks, he fears nothing will keep Luc safe. Should he break both their hearts and let Luc go, or is it too late? If Luc’s already in Eleni’s sights, Arrigo knows that like most things in Vegas, the odds are against him.

You can find it on Amazon here or at my publisher here)

I also published a Christmas short story with DSP Purrfect Holiday You can order it here at DSP purrfect-holiday AND I had a SF novella picked up by Ninestar Press what will be out in 2019. I also published a middle-grade steampunk short story that I’m very proud of (and frankly made more money from than almost anything else which shocked the living hell out of me).

Heck I even managed to get my blood sugar under some semblance of control and I’ve started dancing again (when I say dancing I don’t mean ballet or jazz tap or anything. I mean mostly just getting up and moving to the beat however the hell I feel like it and how the arthritis lets me move.) So I can’t complain about 2018. I’ve had WAY shittier years.

So what’s on deck for 2019? I don’t have much in the way of resolutions but I do have some goals. 1. FINISH These Haunted Hills. I think this is one of the best things I’ve written in years and I need to finish it. It’s two-thirds done. I would love to finish it by May.

2. Find a home for my solarpunk story. I just saw a solarpunk anthology but it’s set in winter and mine is most definitely fall and it’s such a part of the story I can’t really change it (so if you hear of any solarpunk places, let me know).

3. Fix the ending of the Cassadaga story and resend it (yeah I know I said that last year and I did not do it. Sigh).

4. Fix up my bear shifter story because it needs doing badly.

5. Consider a sequel to Blood Red Roulette. It didn’t sell as well as I’d hope from what I can tell but the reviewers have asked for a sequel.

That is a modest beginning for 2019 so I’m happy with that. Anything more will be sauce.

And here’s some writing links to take us into the new year.

How to Outline Your Novel

Story Planning Books: 3 Approaches to Consider

APODS – Priorities: The Four Ps (Part Two – SMART Goals) by Amanda Cabot

Seven Things Writers Get Wrong About Language

Can I Craft a Setting Without Bigotry?


Self-Publishing Is Not A Back-up Publishing Plan

What Binge-Watching ‘Stranger Things’ Taught Me About Storytelling


Transcription Software Can Be A Huge Time-saver


Avoid The Cliché “Strong Female Character”
(I’ll add being a bitch does not equal strong!)

Sunday Small Talk

Other than I’m trying to get neck deep into my nano novel the other thing that has been consuming my soul is that my vampires in Vegas novel comes out at long last in just two days. I can’t even believe it really. I love Arrigo and Luc and I hope you will too. It’s more urban fantasy with a strong romantic subplot than it is simply a romance. There are some life or death moments in it. And I’ve talked a lot about it at various places. I’ve collected the first week of the tour here and there is a giveaway so there’s that. Check out all these wonderful blogs to whom I am grateful. And a huge thanks to Other Worlds Ink for arranging the tour!

Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews

MM Good Book Reviews.

Love Bytes LGBTQ book Reviews

Valerie Ullmer’s blog

Amy Aislin’s blog

MM Midnight Cafe

blood-red-roulette

Blurb
Arrigo Giancarlo’s friends think he’s a rich young man with the unusual job of paranormal investigator, working with his psychic assistant in Las Vegas. In truth he’s a two-thousand-year-old vampire and member of the Chiaroscuro, a group of Supernaturals dedicated to keeping humanity safe from the more dangerous of their kind. He’s also openly bisexual… but alone.

When he spots Luc St. John in a bar, Arrigo is intrigued. What begins as an effort to repay the kindness shown to him in the past quickly turns into much deeper feelings for the suffering and displaced Cajun. For Luc’s part, he feels too poor, too uneducated, and too bound to his hateful family to ever be worthy of elegant and cultured Arrigo.

An old enemy, Eleni, blames Arrigo for murdering her true love. On the anniversary of that death, she’s back to take revenge. As Arrigo’s closest friends fall victim to savage attacks, he fears nothing will keep Luc safe. Should he break both their hearts and let Luc go, or is it too late? If Luc’s already in Eleni’s sights, Arrigo knows that like most things in Vegas, the odds are against him.

Dreamspinner Publications

Amazon

And have a few writing links too.
Writers Beware of the Legal Pitfalls – Copyright Basics Part 3

The Dual Plot Structure That Makes Stories a Success

81 Awesome Mental Health Resources When You Can’t Afford a Therapist Not necessarily writing specific but we all need self care

Crafting Resonance: Music and Writing

Tips On Horking Up Your Novel’s Zero Draft

10 Tips for Hosting a Successful Book Launch Party

Book Selling Strategies and Tactics (Don’t Get Caught In The Monkey Trap)

What is Written Fluency?

Sunday Small Talk

I wish I had more time for small talk. Between struggling to convert a class to an online class at the last minute and doing nano and writing my sabbatical request I haven’t time for much of anything.

I am however doing nano under my other pen name and it’s going all right but I’ve been slowing down because of test making and last minute class stuff for the above mentioned class.

Heck I’m not even had time to say that my novel is coming out in NINE days so here’s me saying that.

blood-red-roulette

Blurb Arrigo Giancarlo’s friends think he’s a rich young man with the unusual job of paranormal investigator, working with his psychic assistant in Las Vegas. In truth he’s a two-thousand-year-old vampire and member of the Chiaroscuro, a group of Supernaturals dedicated to keeping humanity safe from the more dangerous of their kind. He’s also openly bisexual… but alone.

When he spots Luc St. John in a bar, Arrigo is intrigued. What begins as an effort to repay the kindness shown to him in the past quickly turns into much deeper feelings for the suffering and displaced Cajun. For Luc’s part, he feels too poor, too uneducated, and too bound to his hateful family to ever be worthy of elegant and cultured Arrigo.

An old enemy, Eleni, blames Arrigo for murdering her true love. On the anniversary of that death, she’s back to take revenge. As Arrigo’s closest friends fall victim to savage attacks, he fears nothing will keep Luc safe. Should he break both their hearts and let Luc go, or is it too late? If Luc’s already in Eleni’s sights, Arrigo knows that like most things in Vegas, the odds are against him.

You can pre-order the paperback here (currently on sale)

the ebook here

It releases November 13th!

And have some writing links

FIVE THINGS EDITORS WISH CREATIVE WRITERS KNEW

The 7 Deadly Sins of Editors (According to Novelists)

Writing When Life Is More Trick Than Treat

Self-Publishing 3.0 And How To Build Success As An Indie Author With Orna Ross

How Successful Authors Use Social Media: 23 Content Ideas

Create the Villain Readers Love to Hate

From around the web

This is a Truly Bizarre Way to Write a Novel

Writing Women With Sharp Edges

How Dedicating A Whole Year To Write About Happiness Changed My Life

Is It Real? 25 Famous Writers on Writer’s Block

Vision Boards for Authors


Five Fantasies Driven by Unconventional Minds

Telling Is Listening: Ursula K. Le Guin on the Magic of Real Human Conversation

For World Mental Health Day: When Writer’s Block Is Actually Depression

Here Is How You NaNoWriMo, You Ruinous Monster, You

3 Ways to Use “Accidental Research” to Write More Authentic Fiction


Write, Critique, Revise, Repeat: On Le Guin and Asking the Hard Questions of Ourselves

Sunday Small Talk

Uber small this week because I have no notes ready for class this week nor is the solarpunk story done. I want both done by tonight. Also had to get the galley proofs in for my holiday contemporary story Purrfect Holiday which are back in.

Life was on hold writing wise this week anyhow as I concentrated on making the world not spin (inner ear infection)

So here are those links I wanted to share. Happy writing.

From around the web – tweet on the joy of handwriting by Neil Gaiman (just because it captures how I feel)

Why You Can’t Afford to Run Out of Ideas

Trust In The Process

How to Write a Galley Letter (And Get Book Reviews)

Jewel words, crux and flavor words, and everything in between

How to Use Deus Ex Machina Like Stephen King

Why a Good Cover Sells More Books The problem with this is hiring a good cover artist could cost more than you’re going to make (hopefully not but…)

How to Use the Three-Act Structure to Actually Finish Writing Your Novel

The Writer: Episode #1

Six Tips on Writing from John Steinbeck

Things I Wish I Had Known Before Self-Publishing My Book

My Five Favorite Books On Writing

A Writing Career Is A Series Of Cliff-Mitigation Exercises


Ian McEwan’s Advice for Aspiring Writers

How to Promote Your Book

31 Podcasts For Every Type Of Book Lover

What Type Of Book Editing Do You Need? And When?

And from my friend

Six Pieces of Misunderstood Storytelling Advice

Why English Needs Singular They

The Chunky Method ~ By Allie Pleiter

5 Unconventional Book Launch Ideas from Professional Marketers

What Puts the “Super” in Supervillain?

How to Write a Synopsis Agents Will Notice

eBook Pricing Strategies to Sell More Books and Maximize Author Earnings

SECONDARY CHARACTERS: The Good, The Bad & The Quirky

Sunday Small Talk

Very small talk since I’ve been spending my time finishing a 15 year old fanfic novel. Not the best use of my time but right now at the chaotic start of a new semester that was much easier than using my brain power to think up my own stuff…

But I AM back to my solarpunk story but time is quickly running out for me to finish. I had best hurry. (and by that I mean be gone every weekend and accomplish nothing because next weekend is the Mothman Festival and the weekend after the Steampunk Spectacle and in between all that me grading exams).

But let me bring you two wonderful things. First, my beautiful cover for Blood Red Roulette. I linked to the reveal last week but here it is on my own space. The colors work so well in this and it does capture Arrigo’s essence. Huge thanks to Tiferet Design on this one!

blood-red-roulette

Blurb Arrigo Giancarlo’s friends think he’s a rich young man with the unusual job of paranormal investigator, working with his psychic assistant in Las Vegas. In truth he’s a two-thousand-year-old vampire and member of the Chiaroscuro, a group of Supernaturals dedicated to keeping humanity safe from the more dangerous of their kind. He’s also openly bisexual… but alone.

When he spots Luc St. John in a bar, Arrigo is intrigued. What begins as an effort to repay the kindness shown to him in the past quickly turns into much deeper feelings for the suffering and displaced Cajun. For Luc’s part, he feels too poor, too uneducated, and too bound to his hateful family to ever be worthy of elegant and cultured Arrigo.

An old enemy, Eleni, blames Arrigo for murdering her true love. On the anniversary of that death, she’s back to take revenge. As Arrigo’s closest friends fall victim to savage attacks, he fears nothing will keep Luc safe. Should he break both their hearts and let Luc go, or is it too late? If Luc’s already in Eleni’s sights, Arrigo knows that like most things in Vegas, the odds are against him.

You can pre-order the paperback here (currently on sale)

the ebook here

It releases November 13th!

And check out my good friend Leigh Dillon’s debut novella Raising the Bar

raising-the-bar

Blurb : Destin Bellingham has inherited a problem. Thanks to his late playboy father, Destin faces putting a For Sale sign on his family’s historic horse farm. Getting his talented stallion, Black Sambuca, into the Grand Prix show ring would put Bellmeade back on the map—if only someone could make “Sam” behave like a show horse.

Disgraced top rider Tonio Benedetto has his own problems, but he can work magic with difficult jumpers, so Destin hires him despite his bad-boy reputation. The street-smart, openly gay loudmouth from Miami and the closeted, buttoned-down son of Old Dominion Virginia make a rocky pairing, but time is running out to save Bellmeade from bankruptcy.

Opposites attract, sparks of tension grow into flames of passion. But if Tonio fails to tame Sam, will true love become a lost cause too?

You can buy it here

And have a big mess of writing links while you’re at it

From my friend How Do I Portray a Smart Character?

Five Common Harmful Representations of Disability

5 Reasons This Is The Best Time To Be A Creator

How Frequently Should I Publish on Social Media? A HubSpot Experiment

Accounting for Character Identification

Five Ways Gods and the Afterlife Change a Fantasy Setting

On Wildness, Cracked Worlds, Monsters, and the Odd Nature of the Short Story

Bullet Journaling as a Fantasy Writer

Why Writing A Series (Especially As A New Author) Is Really Goddamn Hard The usual Chuck Wendig language warnings apply

Sometimes It’s Okay To Quit Writing The Thing You’re Writing ditto

Your ISBN: Answers To Frequently Asked Questions

The Three-act Structure: Formulaic or Foundational?

Writing For A Cause People who know me know I’m BIG on this one. Yes, this is also one place I’m also willing to give away stories

Evil in a Teacup: Fighting the Institutional Authority of Dolores Umbridge This one is actually subtle in just how good it is. Villainy doesn’t have to be cartoonish and over the top.

Writing Process, Routine, and Craft