Book and Website Updates

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I finally got caught up on the books. They are available for sale. It is a relief to have all six fully edited and formatted as ebooks. Now I can move on to drafting more books. But this time I plan on just focusing on one at a time. Or else I could get too far behind again. That was too much this time.

The current book total is now at 21 books released. There are still more that I will be adding…

I suppose the best thing to do now is to finish up The Colonies of Earth Series. It will make it easier to work on The Violet Series.

I’ve also updated my website. I took down the Available Books pages. I thought it was getting too hard to understand. Now I have all the books organized under their respective book series pages. I figured it would be easier to understand as I have been writing them and thinking of in different book series.

I added the ISBNs, book covers, and blurbs to each book as well for all that are available for sale. The book links will take you to the Smashwords page. Smashwords distributes to other online retailers. I prefer them because they do that distribution and the ebooks are available worldwide as soon as they are listed on Smashwords. I know some people think I’m crazy not to deal with Amazon directly, but they don’t realize how much work I put into each and every book. I have to draw the line somewhere or else I’d be working too much. Besides, Amazon takes a long time to distribute to the rest of the world. Smashwords does distribute to them, but may not send the books unless they sell well on Smashwords first. Sadly, Amazon doesn’t have a bulk uploader so Smashwords cannot send them all of the books they have available.

Some books listed don’t have links or covers or ISBNs with them. Those are not ready to be released. I am working on those. When they are closer to being released, I will add more information as I have it done.

One last update: I’ve started to convert all the back issues of The Moon and The Dark Side of the Moon. Some are available on Smashwords for sale. I will be getting back to it. Once I have all the issues up, I will reorder the converted books. I’ll probably offer them as box sets by the volume or even offer the whole set as one. That project will take quite a bit of time and I already have a lot of different things to work on. So, I have no idea when it will be done.

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Milow, the Kitten with a Magic Tail

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(I wrote this little story at the request of Milow, a kitten I met on Twitter. @Milowmagic Also, it’s International Cat Day, so I’ll go ahead and wish it to be a wonderful day for cats everywhere. By the way, I did spoil and love my little darling, Nuri. She’s quite happy now.)

Once upon a time, there was a kitten named Milow. He was a cute little thing his human mama had found in a shelter. Soon it was obvious he had a magic tail. The tip was white in sharp contrast to the rest of his silvery fur. He could wave it and the magic would come sparkling out.
The better half of the courage was when he was growing up and exploring. He would get into drawers because he was still so small. Once inside he discovered many things. He discovered there was an elf named Silver Moon Unicorn.
This particular elf had a tendency to create feathers from thin air to defuse any tensions with other people. The elf had learned that the best way to defeat people who are poor listeners was with laughter. She waved her wand and poof! Feathers would appear and tickle the poor unsuspecting people.
But it had to be the joyful, playful sort of laughter or else it wouldn’t work. It was the same kind of laughter that Milow could create with his presence and by waving his magic tail.
One evening Milow was looking out the window of his flat. He saw some figures doing a waltz. They were transparent like ice. After the ice waltz the kitten saw outside his window, he heard some humans talking to each other.
“Let’s listen to the sky.”
“Yes, let’s do.”
Everyone watched the stars and the moon appear.
And the real night comes, thought Milow to himself. He wondered if he would meet Silver Moon Unicorn. He remembered she did say she could fly by using her magic wand.
He wagged his tail three times and an elf appeared flying on a broomstick in front of the moon. She came near his window. She waved and said hi.
Milow mewed back. Then he saw someone else was holding onto the broom and flying with her. Someone small with black cat ears, black cat tail, and two black cat paws. The little one also had blond hair and blue eyes.
He laughed. “Hi, Milow! I’m a little neko. That means I’m half human and half cat. Meow!” He laughed some more. “My name is White Lion Unicorn and I’m flying with mama so I can talk to you as cats do!”
They meowed for several minutes. Silver Moon smiled to hear them. Not that she could understand them, but that didn’t matter. Milow did a couple of back flips and smiled.

Camp NaNoWriMo July 2017 is now complete…

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Camp NaNoWriMo Completion Certificate July 2017

I reached both NaNoWriMo goals for July 2017. I original thought I would edit 500 pages and I ended up changing the goal to 600. I went over that revised goal. I also wanted to edit 4 out of the 6 books I have to work on and I edited all of them. Two are nearly ready for publishing now and will be released as soon as they are in ebook form. The other four will require another editorial pass before I can decide how close they are to being published.

However, I do feel much better about the four that aren’t quite ready yet. They are better and will continue to get better with the next editorial pass. Until I finish these six books, I can’t draft another one.

But I still have to write a story about a kitten with a magic tail. I will do that soon and post the result here on the blog sooner or later.

July Camp NaNoWriMo 2017 & Other Updates…

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I am participating again, but this time I’m not drafting anything new. I’m doing an editing blitz to catch up on editing. I still have six books to edit and format as ebooks. All the covers are done. I plan on editing at least 4 out of 6 this month. If I can get to all the books, then that will be even better.

Also during this month, I have four ebooks and the 13th volume of The Moon magazine for free on Smashwords. My Smashwords profile includes all the books that are currently for sale including all the magazines I have converted into ebooks.

The four books are The Strange & Unusual Universe of Silver Moon Unicorn, The Guardian Series Book 1: The Formation of the Guardians, The Violet Series Book 1: A Water Nymph’s Tale, and The White Lion Unicorn Series Book 1: A Colony of Tiny Nekos. I suppose I should remember to promote them throughout the month or else people may not know they are still available…

One last thing… One of the #CatsOfTwitter has asked me to write about him and his magic tail. He is just a kitten and I feel like I can’t refuse him. Now I just need to get to know him and then I’ll be writing about him.

The Genres I Write In…

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Like so many things in and related to writing, genre is a very slippery. It is necessary for marketing. If anything it should help to describe the category the writing falls in. But it can be a murky description at the same time.

I tend to say my writing is science fiction and urban fantasy. I have to pick at least one genre. Both make me comfortable and I think they give a somewhat good idea of the elements in my stories. I have read quite a bit science fiction over the years. Perhaps not as much fantasy, but it seems to me that is wasn’t as accessible to me. I don’t know why that it is. Perhaps I will make up for it sooner or later…

I do use the standard space ships and other technology in my stories. It’s background and props for the characters to use. The urban fantasy is because of the wide variety of the characters who live in my universe. Yes, there are humans, but they are not the only ones. There are also vampires, were creatures, nymphs, elves, fairies, dragons, merfolks, dragons, centaurs… The list go could on and on if I’m not careful. The setting is in cities and countrysides in different time periods.

I’ve also read lots of Victorian literature, which I tend to refer to as Victorian Romances. Mainly those written by Louisa May Alcott and Jane Austen. Granted those women never got married, but they were observing everyone around them. They have let us see how marriage and romance was viewed in their time period. They focused more on the psychological aspects, but it is still a big part of romance. That does come out in my stories. I find myself making notes on who has children because the genetic lines are important as I am creating a whole universe. People just don’t come out of nowhere. They come from other people. And genes can do funny things. All those different people living in my universe don’t always know they may have were creature genes because they don’t always have another physical form.

Even though there is romance, I don’t want to use the Romance genre because what I write tends to be more psychological rather than graphic physical descriptions. I know there is Magical Realism as a genre. My characters do talk about magic and some of them do use it. They say it’s not an exact science and it may not work the way you think it should. But I may not claim that genre in addition to the ones I typically use. Is two genres enough?

My main focus when I write is on the characters themselves. What they think, feel, and do. Not all of them have romance in their lives. Some have to deal with prejudice hurled at them. Or they are the ones with the prejudice. In some stories, I have two characters that have similar genetics, but different personalities. I’m just using the contrast to make a point.

I try to use genre as a category and not be murky about it. I can’t guarantee there won’t be mystery in my stories. I may not use all the genre rules, but I focus more on the stories. I try to keep them true to themselves. So, if any rules get in the way, they will be broken. Genre can be a tool when I’m drafting a story. But genre is never everything when I’m writing.

Publishing…

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I knew it could happen sooner or later. And it did. A publisher has approached me and asked specifically for The Amazons Rise Up, a tale about a group of women who come together and form the colony on Orcus out in the Kuiper Belt. I wasn’t sure what to think at first.

So I checked out the website first. Inkitt and publishing info My impression was that it sounded geared towards helping writers out. But it sounded a little too good to be true. I suspected there had to be some kind of price involved.

And there is. They claim that in order for them to fully promote a book they need the full exclusive rights to it. Well, I don’t do deals like that. Sure they offer editing and book cover design, but those are things I’ve been doing myself for quite some time now.

I like to have full and complete creative control over my books. I am a graphic designer as well as a writer. I didn’t spend all that time and energy learning graphic design to had it over to someone else for what? So they can possibly make my book like others which are in the mainstream?

I’d consider it if they wanted to promote just a printed version. Then I could keep selling the ebook version without messing anything up for me and the universe I’ve been building for my characters. But that’s not the deal.

The only other thing that bothers me is that they used the term, ’emerging writers’. As far as I understand that term, it refers to writers who are going mainstream and are only in their 20s. I am no longer in my 20s, so they shouldn’t be talking to me unless they are willing to eliminate the age from the definition.

I know how strange and usual my work is. So was Philip K. Dick’s work. I know he did have some trouble with publishers, but his work is still read today. I have had trouble with traditional publishers. It’s clear that they hate me, but they can’t do anything for me that I don’t already do for myself. So it’s no big deal that they don’t publish my work.

Inkitt is using a different approach from the traditional publishers. They do find the audience before they invest in the book. They’ve been in the business for about a year now… So, it’s too early to say how well this new approach will work for them and the books they publish.

So, I take it as a compliment that they are interested in one of my books. I will just say, ‘no, thank you, I will continue to be self published.’

Camp NaNoWriMo for April 2017 is Over!

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Winner Certificate for the novel, Praying for Death

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Winner Certificate for the novel, This Strange, Wild Land

I did again. I drafted two new novels and wrote about 90,000 words. Now I need a long well earned and deserved break. At the end it got a little ridiculous. Not only was I writing everyday and pushing myself to put in all the details I could to tell both stories, but I also went on long walks just about everyday.

Then I think I must have gone crazy again. I replied to one of J.K. Rowling’s tweets, lost a whole toenail, lost wifi due to a lightning bolt which knocked out the electricity to my neighborhood, and found myself waiting to go over to Craft World, which is on the Italian Grid of the hypergrid… only to come up hard against a language barrier. I guess I wasn’t thinking and the mediation event sounded good at the time. But it was in Italian and not English.

It could have been worse. I did recognize a few words and when the host realized I was from the United States, she sent me private messages in English. I didn’t speak after the event was over. Neither did one other person until he was leaving. He typed goodnight to everyone (in Italian, I assure you) and then disappeared.

After all of this, I now have seven novels to completely edit and format as ebooks. I cannot allow myself to draft anymore novels until July, which will be another Camp NaNoWriMo. Now I must focus on editing the seven novels before starting any new projects. Oh, and I started another poetry book…

Time for a break before anything else goes wrong. I should be more careful and stop playing with lightning bolts. Or perhaps just be careful where I play with them.

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Dance into the fire…

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I’m all warm and toasty now.