Upon Reflection

I change my mind a lot. Back and forth I go often spinning wheels in the metaphorical mud of life. Too often this back and forth ends up pushing me into a position where my creative work suffers. There is a lot that I want to do. Check that, there’s a lot that I wish that I really wanted to do.

What I mean by that last statement is that there is a lot of things that I wish I was interested enough in doing. Need a further explanation? I will give you an example: political writing. I have a political opinion. I have theories of what would work and what wouldn’t. I’ve talked about wanting to write politically on a separate blog. Unfortunately for my desires, my interests in doing so are only whenever I am seeing some affront to my political opinion. Outside of that, my interests poopoo the idea of even bothering to delve deep enough to make holding a blog about it worthwhile.

It’s like wanting to be an astronaut. It’s a fanciful idea, but the effort that I would have to put into it far outweigh my interest.

So remember that time I said I wanted to start a political blog? Yeah, forget that. Honestly I have been more preoccupied relearning how to draw (I am surprised at how much skill I retained despite 20 years not really putting effort in), writing creatively, and building my atheism blog, things I do have the interest to put the energy into. Although I might fly into a political essay now and then, depending on the topic I will let this be my forum. Otherwise it will be for me.

An Experiment

I am still quite a newbie in the independent publishing world. As such, my sales stink, my marketing skills are paltry, and my readership is poor to non-existent. For these few years, with the exception of permanently free titles, all of my books are available exclusively through Amazon. I publish only through the Amazon KDP program, and all of them are committed to the Amazon KDP Select.

Is that the right thing to do?

Absolutely have no idea. But more and more I am leaning towards it not being the right decision. So I am dropping from KDP Select.

Being an independent writer with little reputation allows me to make this move with little to no concern over what might happen. Worst case: I have 0 sales vs minimal to no sales. The loss at this point will be so insignificant that I would not even notice.

Were I to begin having massive success between now and the dates I have listed below for each title, I might have to reconsider what I am going to do. Until that moment, the following dates below is when my books each will drop from KDP Select and become available through more retailers and versions including iBooks, Kobo, and nook.

Change of Seasons – February 11

Of Earth and Ice (part 1) – March 7

The Good Teacher – March 11

Remember the Yorktown (Gravity book 1) – March 13

Awakening of a Predator (Gravity book 2) – March 13

Leaving it Behind – March 13

Movement of Pawns (Gravity book 3) – March 29

The Dangerous Life of Agnes Pyle – March 30

Any book that I publish between now and then will be added directly to all retailers. That will probably only be two short stories, but either way, that is the plan.

Like any experiment, I will give this some time to monitor how this impacts me on Amazon and in general. With luck, the wider distribution will have a favorable impact moving me closer to my ultimate goals. We’ll see.

The Dangerous Life of Agnes Pyle

agnes-cover-attempt-3c4cIt’s here!

After working on this project for over 2 years, I have finally released my first Young Adult novel, “The Dangerous Life of Agnes Pyle.”

Available now: the kindle edition of “The Dangerous Life of Agnes Pyle” for only $2.99! Within hours of posting this, the print edition will also be available for $7.99 (with free kindle edition when purchasing the paperback version). Link is below to the amazon kindle version, paperback will be available through it as well.

“The Dangerous Life of Agnes Pyle” follows the adventure of Agnes as she learns the skills to survive her mission of helping defend the barrier between the spirit and mortal realms.

Buy it now! Share with your friends!

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01NBPGO2R

What to do…

What to do; what to do… For over the last two weeks I’ve been sick, while stupidly trying to start up on a new diet/health regiment. Not a diet so much really as it is a lifestyle change, but that is for another post. But couple that with holiday activity and the fact that my day job has been relentless lately due to those impending holidays, I am just barely keeping afloat. I am afloat, but there isn’t much more that I can handle.

Writing, getting my next book finalized for publishing, the gym, and blogging are the things I’ve let go of just so I don’t fall too far down, so I don’t burn out.

Writing this post is a manner of my admitting that to myself.

A few weeks ago I posted that I wanted to create a political opinion blog and a blog that discussed my atheism. While I still want to, getting to a point like I am now has gotten me to reexamine what I should do.

Here’s the deal: I want to be a fiction writer first and foremost. If I ever see success as a blogger in other realms, that would be nice, but that isn’t the goal. And when I am having issues keeping up with things as I have been the last few weeks or longer, what I should be doing is doubling down on what work is needed for my primary goal: fiction. Meaning that even though I am spending time to write this post, I should be getting myself back onto the job of writing fiction and then publishing those projects. As I free up more time, that’s what I will be doing.

So what the hell does this even mean? Really nothing. It’s me being a writer and doing what writers do when they are trying to work out a problem: write about it. And I don’t think that I am having so much of a problem as much as just going through the normal rough patches one has. But this rough patch has given me the desire to reflect.

I will still do a political blog and a blog on atheism, but it will just be a little longer for them to happen. Plus when they do, they’ll be the first thing I slack on when other priorities (or life) get in the way. So keep your eyes peeled for when these do come up. They’ll be happening, but in due time.

Separation

I’ve given this option months of thought. As I continue to work on my main site and my writings, I still wanted to occasionally write about politics and now my religious leanings… otherwise known as atheism. But months ago, my brother had suggested that perhaps it wasn’t in my interest to keep all of that lumped in with my writing. I am a fiction writer first and foremost, so these topics almost were a distraction as neither should be considered when one is going to look at my site to read a story. It took me some time to see why, but I now agree.

So from here I am purging prior posts on politics, some social commentaries, and mentions of my theological leanings. I will keep anything on writing or non-political and religious items that I wish to yap about.

I have not created my site for my atheism yet, but for politics, my other brother’s and my old blog uspoliticalnonsense.wordpress.com will be where I post from now on.

Links will also be available up in the menu. I won’t post often on them. I’d rather keep my primary focus on fiction. If you are curious of my posts on those topics, you are welcome to click over.

Blog Black-Out this Month

Going to be quiet on here for the remainder of October.

In early November I will be releasing my first YA and second full-length novel, The Dangerous Life of Agnes Pyle. In the 16 days remaining until November, I am focusing all of my efforts on ensuring that the story is ready, including formatting and cover design. (Unfortunately having to do the cover art myself still. I had an artist already slated, but it fell through. Eventually the art work will be updated.)

Agnes is slightly over 80,000 words long and took me a little over 2 years to fully write. It has been “done” for a few months, but has been in a state of review to ensure that I didn’t mess something up.

It tells of a 12-year-old girl (Agnes Pyle) whose parents were recently killed leaving her to enter into apprenticeship far sooner than was planned as she and her parents belonged to a group of mortals tasked with protecting the barriers between the spirit realms and the mortal realm. But there has been something hunting them down and killing them. Now Agnes must learn to defend herself or face the same fate as her parents.

Changes Abound

Most of my writing life has been a series of changes and adjustments. Nothing that I do sticks. But that isn’t a bad thing. Considering that I am not making a living off of my writing, finding what works has been a challenge. Finding what works takes experimenting and changing as time goes on.

More than finding what works for success, I have been trying to find what works for me. My writing is at best sporadic. Every so often I pound through thousands upon thousands of words in a short amount of time only to run into a writing drought where I maybe get a few hundred words each day.

The main point is inconsistency.

And I need to drive more consistency.

This past Saturday my best friend and writing buddy Marcel Alexander attended a writer’s event in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin called the Beachside Authorfest. No while the event wasn’t a success for either of us for a multitude of reasons not related to us, it was a huge success in that I learned a lot about myself.

And because of that, I am writing this post speaking of a few things I am doing to become more fluid with my writing. Also to be more competitive. So here’s the list of what is changing over the course of the coming month:

  1. Prices on all 3 Gravity books, The Good Teacher, and my poetry book Change of Seasons will drop today.
    Being that I haven’t been selling them, the price drop isn’t going to affect my profit other than to make the books more appealing to purchase. Let’s face it, I overpriced them in my inexperience and bloated hope that they would do better. Now it is time to fix that.
    The Gravity series will go from $2.99 to $0.99 for the kindle ebooks and $7.99 (book 1) & $8.99 (books 2 and 3) to $5.95/$6.95 respectively for print.
    The Good Teacher will go from $4.99 to $2.99 for kindle ebook and from $10.99 to $9.95 for print.
    Change of Seasons will go from $3.99 to $2.99 for kindle ebook and from $8.99 to $7.95 for print.
    Links are up top in the menu bar for each of the books.
  2. Of Earth and Ice (my sci-fi web-serial) is going bye-bye from Wattpad.
    The move to Wattpad was a rash one not understanding what Wattpad was all about. While it is a free site and free to read, it just wasn’t working out. Too much effort from me was needed to keep up with it. Given my terrible ability to stay consistent, it wasn’t a great choice. And with where I want to go and how I want to handle future writing, Wattpad is not an avenue for my needs and wants. The 9 chapters or episodes I have out at the moment will go out in another form for free, most likely as an ebook through Smashwords and maybe on my site as well. The continuation though will be on hold as I decide what I am going to do with it.
  3. My blogging will indeed remain sporadic. At worst, weekly.
    Let’s face it, the high expectations I set with this post earlier in the year were a little too ambitious. Keeping up with posts is good, but I cannot sacrifice my writing energy to do so. Writing fiction is what I want to do, so blogging has to come 2nd. I will stay on top of updating with a blog post at least once per week though.
  4. A Mailing List will be starting up in August.
    That’s right, I will be starting to email out monthly updates to those who sign up as well as offering exclusives and giveaways. It’s still in the works as to exactly how it’ll be, but suffice to say it will be an enhancement to what’s going on. As soon as I figure it out I will have the sign-up on this site!

The focus will be on writing and learning more to market my books more effectively. It will require more dedication and some more work on my end. Part of it is narrowing the scope of what is going on. As I only have a very limited amount of time each day to spend on what needs to be done, it doesn’t make sense to worry about free stories with regular publishing intervals such as Of Earth and Ice, or to blog every day.

I apologize for what can be described as wishy-washy or flip-flopping, but it is all a learning experience.

GRAVITY 3

Well it’s about fucking time isn’t it?

Almost 3 years after publishing book 2 of my saga, Gravity, I am finally ready to release book 3: The Movement of Pawns.

The official release date will be July 9th (although it will be available before that).

July 9th is the day of the Beachside Authorfest at Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. Given that, if you are around Lake Geneva for the fest, then please stop by!

I finished the final touches today and now I am getting the cover locked down.

My hopes and intentions will be to have book 4 by the year end… Certainly not another 3 years from now…

Of Earth and Ice Updated

In the spirit of the rebuild of this site, and frankly in regards to my trying to get back on track, I have gotten my free serialized sci-fi saga “Of Earth and Ice” updated and onto Wattpad. Finally!
Here is the link to them–> (CLICK HERE) or (CLICK HERE) (OR HERE!) I recommend you click over and give it a read. In fact, download Wattpad to your tablet and/or phone and then read the episodes!