End of Year Blitzkrieg

So here we are at the end of September, with three months left to go in 2014 (as hard as that is for me to believe). NaNoWriMo is coming up again in November too.

I’ve been messing around with KDP Select and pricing and whatnot for some time now. That stuff doesn’t produce new words. I’ve also been revising, editing and proofreading The Crossover Gene, which has sucked a lot of my time away from writing new words.

I need to finish Badlands #3 and I also want to write a novel for NaNoWriMo. I was going to do it last year, but since I ran behind on Badlands #2 it got pushed. This year I’m on schedule, so I’d really like to knock out that novel this time around. I also have some short stories I want to finish.

So with the decision to do a 90-day stint in KDP Select already behind me and with The Crossover Gene being uploaded to Amazon tomorrow, I figured I’d just go nose to the grindstone and write the hell out of the rest of the year. Finish Badlands #3 and the new novel and those short stories. No editing or proofing, just new words.

I’ll likely go silent here on the blog for a bit, but I might try to check in once a month or so. I’ll definitely check in again by end of year and tell how things went, what worked and what didn’t, etc. I’ll also update with info on my current KDPS stint.

So until then, take it easy.

Roadmap for 2013

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

So now comes the time to reflect on the current year and plan for the following year. 2012 was a good year for me, overall. I released a novel and a novella, with a short story due to be published before end of year. I also completed the NaNoWriMo challenge, ending with 50,326 words. I’m 11,000 words or so into my second Badlands book too. I also fully revised Into the Badlands, cleaning up a lot of my clunky “newbie” narrative.

Adding up all the words written (and excluding the Badlands revision), it comes to 157,000 words in 2012. Combined with last year, that’s nearly 300,000 words, almost one-third of the way to my first million words. Hard to believe.

What’s to come? Well, I first have to finish book two of my Badlands trilogy. A trilogy, you ask? Not simply a sequel? ‘Fraid so. After outlining the sequel I found that one character’s story just didn’t have a proper ending. It soon became clear to me that this person’s story needed another novel, so the idea of a trilogy came to mind. Besides, a trilogy will be fun. I think the third book will be called Reclaiming the Badlands, but we’ll see.

Once Beyond the Badlands is finished, I’ll be back on The Crossover Gene. I wrote half of the first draft for NaNoWriMo, so I already have a leg up on completing the novel by the end of 2013.  That’ll probably be all I can squeeze in during 2013, since I’ll already be pushing myself to meet these goals. But, if I get ahead of the curve, I might just do the NaNoWriMo challenge again. I already have an idea of the novel I might write.

This also marks the two year anniversary of my return to writing. Amazing things have happened over the past couple of years and I hope next year is even more amazing.

With the right amount of hard work and luck, I think it will be.

NaNoWriMo 2012 Progress: Day 23

I just passed day 23 of the National Novel Writing Month challenge. So far I’ve written 30,034 words of my sci-fi thriller The Crossover Gene. That works out to an average of around 1,300 words per day. Unfortunately that average won’t get me to 50,000 words by the end of November, but the upside is that it’s 300 words per day more than my normal quota of 1,000 words per day. Considering my work, home and family obligations, I’m pretty damn happy to hit 30,000 so quickly. At this rate, although I won’t make November 30th, I will finish my 50,000 words around December 8th (unless I can break out some marathon sessions over the following week). Continue reading

NaNoWriMo 2012 Progress: Day 11

For anyone interested, I’m taking part this year in NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month. I have a few friends who’ve been talking about writing novels for some time now, so after a few too many Miller High Lifes at a July 4th party, I put the NaNoWriMo challenge out there. They accepted and, well, here we are.

I’ve put Beyond the Badlands, the sequel to my debut novel Into the Badlands, temporarily on hold while I work on another novel for NaNoWriMo. The new book is called The Crossover Gene and it’s based on a premise I came up with summer before last. I’m making decent progress on The Crossover Gene, averaging around 1,300 words per day. I’m still a little behind (something I plan to rectify tonight), but I think I might actually hit 50k words by November 30th. Of course the novel will ultimately clock in around 100k words, but this gets me halfway there. I might even take December and just finish up the first draft. Continue reading

“The Desolate” Gets a New Cover

I’m taking a little time out of my NaNoWriMo word crunch (I’m only slightly behind the eight ball now) to toss up a quick post about The Desolate‘s recent cover change. I noticed over the following few months after The Desolate‘s release that the stock photo I’d chosen for the cover was a pretty popular image. Too popular, in fact. I saw at least two other books with the same image on their covers. When I received a piece of promotional email using the same image I knew that I needed to change my cover. I needed something that would differentiate my book, not confuse my book with others’.

I went on the hunt at Dreamstime.com and found five images I thought might work. I mocked up covers and sent them to former beta readers and some friends whose opinions I trust. They unanimously chose the image I also thought was best, so I worked up the cover and pushed new files up to Amazon. Continue reading