Posted in photography, Revenants Abroad, Vampires, writing

Revenants Abroad – Chapter 16

I posted Chapter 16 this morning. It’s another short one. Over 2700 total reads now, thanks so much to everyone who’s read, tweeted, and recommended it!

If you’re not familiar with it, this is my first novel about a vampire and his assistant, and some old friends. It’s more of a buddy story, but there is a romantic sub-plot. It’s been interesting to me that some of the most passionate responses to the story have come from male readers. I know most people hear “vampires” and assume it’s another romance, but it’s really more about learning to make your way in the world, living on the fringes of society, and building your own family. I love these characters so much, and have lots of new faces for the sequel I’m working on.

Posted in books, photography, writing

Revenants Abroad – Chapter 14

I went ahead and posted chapter 14 today. It’s a short one, just a couple pages. That’s halfway, there are 28 chapters all told. I’m planning on posting chapter 15 this Wednesday. I seem to have several in a row that are quite short, so I don’t want to go too long between posting them. I hope you’re enjoying, if you’ve been reading, and thanks bunches to those who have.

A couple pics from today. Got some blue sky which was nice after all the rain and gray we’ve had lately.

blue sky 12-28-14

And the eagles were enjoying it, too

eagles in afternoon sun 12-28-14

And first quarter moon tonight:

1st quarter moon 12-28-14

Kind of baffles me that I seem to be able to get clearer pictures of the moon than I can of those eagles.

Posted in ebook, photography, Revenants Abroad, self-publishing, Vampires, writing

Revenants Abroad – Chapter 13

In case you missed it, I posted chapter 13 on Christmas Eve, a little early. Follow along there, or buy the full novel on Smashwords, Kobo, Barnes and Noble, etc (see Smashwords for all options, including mobi format for Kindle). Go shoot pool or take a hand of cards with the guys. Andrej and Neko are really very sporting. Well, Neko – maybe ever so slightly less so…

Many thanks to everyone who’s been reading, and/or purchased the book. I can’t tell you how thrilled I am that these characters resonate with so many, and that’s exactly what I was hoping for. I love these guys, hope you will, too.

I’m trying to hunker down and get some words in on the sequel, which I haven’t actually got a working title for yet. :::rubs chin::: Well I kinda-sorta do, but it’s not very good. Revenants Abroad riffed on Twain’s “Innocents Abroad” so I’m casting about for a suitable classic to “adapt” for the next book. I’m thinking either Age of Revenants, or House of Revenants (with apologies to Edith Wharton). Hm, well, there’s time.

Sunset from December 22, 2014, first full day of winter. Rare to see clear skies this time of year here.

Sunset 12-22-14

Posted in cover art, Prague, self-publishing, Vampires, writing

Why Wattpad

Vampire Christmas

Please note: no one is sparkling.

I was asked why I’m serializing Revenants Abroad for free on Wattpad. Quite simply, it’s my first novel, and I just wanted to get it out there and start getting some notice. As anyone who reads is no doubt aware there are a lot of books out there and more coming all the time. It’s hard to be heard/seen/noticed in all that. I try not to overdo the marketing on Twitter, but without a huge marketing budget that would allow me to take out full page ads in the New York Times, I just try to be noticed without being obnoxious. Happily, the person who asked the question is enjoying the book.

I have also discovered that once the book is up on Amazon in paper form I will have to remove it from Wattpad. If it’s available anywhere for free, Amazon will also make it free. This isn’t really my goal. So, I’m doubling-down on posting chapters with the aim of getting them all posted so you can read it there if you like, and then releasing the book on Amazon a couple days later. At that time the entire thing will be removed from Wattpad.

I let Chapter 8 fly this morning, and may post Chapter 9 later tonight. I’d like to have the book on Amazon as soon as I can. Smashwords is proving not to be the gateway I’d hoped for, despite their ties to other retailers.

If you’re reading along and enjoying it, a vote or comment would be greatly appreciated. A sale would be great, too 😉

(P.S. to Jason – sorry for desecrating your work!)

Posted in photography, Vampires, writing

Pressing On

For those following along on Wattpad, I’ll be posting Chapter 3 of Revenants Abroad on Friday. Thanks to everyone who’s been reading!

I’m still working on getting the book up on Amazon via CreateSpace. My cover artist is putting the necessary illustrations into the format Amazon needs, bless his heart. So if you’re waiting for a paper copy it shouldn’t be much longer.

Sun behind tree 11-12-14

Posted in clouds, full moon, photography, writing

Rising Moon

Took me awhile to get home last night. I kept stopping to take pictures of the rising full moon.

Not quite sure how I got the colors in the first one, but I like the way it turned out.

Also, I’ve changed to a new WordPress theme (AGAIN). This one lets you put social media buttons just under the title in header. Unfortunately, it seems they don’t have the little logos for Wattpad, Smashwords, or Goodreads, so the three in the middle are generic for now.

I published Chapter 2 of Revenants Abroad on Wattpad this morning. I’m not sure I’ll serialize the whole thing, I’ll see what kind of response I get over the next couple weeks.

Wishing you all a great day and a great weekend!

Posted in books, fantasy, Halloween, horror, NaNoWriMo, Publishing, Revenants Abroad, Vampires, writing

Revenants Abroad pre-orders open!

Revenants Abroad - Final for Web Display 501x800

I have done it, I have loosed my vampires upon the world! This is both terrifying and exciting. There was a lot of time I thought about just tossing it in a drawer (electronically) and forgetting about it. But then I thought, what the hey, eh? Why not just run it up the proverbial flag pole and see who salutes? Maybe we should meet the team:

Revenants Abroadfinal Andrej
Andrej Vojacek

Anne-Marie Van Vooren
Anne-Marie Van Vooren

Neko Melonakos
Neko Melonakos

This is the core group: just a couple of fun-loving, bourbon-swilling, chain-smoking, blood-drinking vampires and one human woman who have become a de facto family. It’s a little dysfunctional but what family isn’t? Somehow they’re still falling in with the wrong crowd.

The book releases on October 31 (I just had to have that day!), but you can pre-order now on Smashwords in a variety of formats and it should be up soon if not already at B&N, Kobo, Scribd, Oyster, FlipKart, Overdrive…  You can also download 10% of it to take it for a test drive, see if you’d like to read more. Also, the first chapter is up on Wattpad .

I’m working on getting it up at Amazon, but until then you can get the MOBI version from Smashwords.

If you don’t like pre-orders the book is available in just a couple days. I did a short pre-order period, mostly due to the timing of being able to get it through Smashwords vetting system and into their Premium Catalog, which took far less time than anticipated.

So, on to NaNoWriMo on Saturday, and start of the sequel to RA, working title “The Age of Revenants”.

Posted in autumn, fall, photography, self-publishing, writing

Edits and Evil Programs

Not much going on, either with pics or the book. I’m still immersed in final edits, and having fits with Word. It seems every time I close and reopen the file it runs words together, removing the spaces between them. I found three crunched together last night and Word didn’t even pick it up as a misspelling. Argh. Now I’m terrified that when I release the book it’s going to have all this funky spacing. I thought maybe it was because I was opening the file on both my home computer using Word 2007, and occasionally on my work computer in Word 2010, but I’ve never seen this before. If anyone else has run into this and knows a fix, please let me know.

Posted in books, Office Life, Oregon, Portland, Publishing, Vampires, writing

Can This Mouse Roar?

:::aside to Jason – If you read this, I haven’t changed my mind about wanting the cover:::!Matthias.JPG


I’m having wild swings of emotion these days, due in part to the change of jobs coming up. I have one week left at my current job, after which I will start at the new job at my former company. For a few moments in the office the other day as I was training one of my co-workers to take over one of my job functions, I had a feeling of competence that I haven’t really had for the last two years. This place has done such a number on my self-worth I’ve begun to think of myself as an incompetent screw-up.

Now, however, trying to pass down what I know to others to hand off everything I do (and you should have seen the list of job functions my supervisor was trying to figure out how to parcel out among the others) I realized how much I DO know about my job, and how impossible it will be to transfer all of it. And that’s only with this one particular task. The office manager has been particularly nice to me the last few days, not sure what that means.

Big Boss, however, has been as cold to me as ever. She knows I’m leaving and hasn’t said more than a ‘good morning’ when she arrives in the office. She’s out of town all next week, so I will never see her again. If I had any doubts about this being the right move for my mental health, that removed them. Financially this may not be the best move, but there are more important things.

So now I’m having second thoughts about this whole book thing. Can I really do this? Should I?  I’m still editing. And rewriting. And terrified, basically. I don’t know where people get the confidence to go ahead with these things and market their books (relentlessly) online. Moments of “Why not?” alternate with “Why bother?” Despite some aperiodic Leonine bravado, I am a mouse at heart.

Maybe my psyche’s not as strong as it once was. The older we get the more we realize how little we know. I think I’ll go write and play with my imaginary friends.

Posted in books, Publishing, writing

POD? Vanity Press? Indie? Self-Pub?

If you find any of these terms unclear or downright obtuse, check out Lynn Price’s excellent article today on Behler Blog. Lynn is editorial director at Behler Publishing, and writes a really really good, informative blog. She’s got definitions of all these terms (click back to a previous post she links to), helping keep writers out of the clutches of unscrupulous vanity presses. Go visit Lynn and maybe the Beagle will bring you a margarita.