Thursday, September 29, 2011

Why I write and a preview...

It always flabbergasts me when I log onto Twitter. I lose a follower (or five) but gain about the same. I figure it is because I'm not particularly active and that's fine.

I remember when it used to seriously bother me as well as make me feel horrendous when I lost a follower. Now I know a bit better and don't take it as a personal insult.

But, that is not what is the most astonishing thing about Twitter. What really awes me is the amount of followers some people gain in a short time (10,000 in five months for some). I've read Mr. Locke's book so it's not a big secret. One has to market and put their name out there constantly.

There is only one problem with that for me: I'm not a full-time author. I work all day and come home mentally drained to the point where I can't think of anything witty or humorous to say to attract more attention or readers.

I can't quit my job. Well, I could technically. But I've never been one to put all my faith in one stream of revenue. Quitting my job is a frightening prospect when I have bills that must be paid and no safety net to fall back on.

It's a conundrum. In order to market more, I need to do it full time. To do that, I must take a giant leap of faith and hope enough people buy my work so I can live. If they don't I will fall into debt and homelessness: I will be screwed.

For the past few weeks I have asked myself: Why write if no one is actually going to read my work? I could not think of an answer to be wonderfully blunt. It scared me and I lost some of that self-confidence I had been famous for in the past.

Of course, this resulted in a kind of depression which has led me to be completely inactive on any social network and caused me to fumble on the release date of Apocalyptic (Doomsday anthology - out Monday). I have not written or read my own work in about three weeks while I pondered over that query.

All authors will reply to the inquiry of why they write differently. Some do it for the money, many because they feel they were born to, various others because they enjoy it, and even those others for the fame.

After perusing a wonderful blog by Russell Blake and reading over the answers of Stephen King, Jeaniene Frost, Yasmine Galenorn, and others that I can't remember at the moment, I believe I have it figured out.

I write for myself. I know, it sounds selfish but allow me to iterate that further. I write because I enjoy creating characters, dreaming about magical powers, and living dangerous situations (safely through someone else's eyes).

So what if I have a handful of fans? Big deal if no one buys my work by the millions. Who cares if I don't become a New York Times Bestseller? I write for myself. If someone happens to come across my work and like it: awesome, wonderful, amazing, wo-hoo!

If not, I'm not going to lose sleep over it. I'm not going to shed tears about it. I may be upset that no one else will get to love (or hate) my characters as much as I do but that is their own loss. I love (and hate) my characters and I'm going to continue to be their voice.

Why? Because it's fun. Because I can. Because I was born with an over-active imagination. Because I HAVE THE TECHNOLOGY.

Because if I don't write their stories my brain will implode, bleed out of my ears, flood out of my nose and soak my keyboard with gray matter. Nice imagery, I'll have to inform my graphic artist of that. There will be fun had by all.

As I penned this down (and I DID actually hand write this in a notebook) I've come to the conclusion that I will always write. Even if no one ever reads what I write, I will continue to create. That does not mean I'll stop promoting to the best of my ability. I will try to get others to love (or hate) my characters, settings and stories as much as I do.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to finish polishing off the five stories for Apocalyptic that will be coming out Monday. Below you will find an excerpt to keep you busy.

Oh, one more thing: my graphic designer is an ADHD monkey and created a funky image based on the story in the preview below. Said image shall be posted soon as I haven't uploaded it anywhere and it's technically not fully complete yet.

Until then, Good-night and don't let the souls from the foulest pits of Hell drag you into Limbo where you will wander in the cold darkness for eternity.

Preview of Music:

I’m not entirely sure how or why it happened. I just woke up one day and it was silent as if I had gone deaf over night. This deafness for me would be my worst fears come true. I’m a musician through and through. Not famous but good enough to play at a local bar every weekend for some extra chump change that my 9AM to 5PM job doesn’t offer enough of.

Rather, didn’t offer enough of. Or something. I’m not entirely sure anymore. All I know for certain is that there was no one else around. No baby crying from the apartment next to mine (fucking relief that is), no car horns honking outside my window, no chatter of the girls downstairs or the mind-blowing bass of the guy upstairs.

My alarm didn’t even wake me up. Like I said, it was like I had gone deaf. The sun light coursing through my window did the honor of making me peel back my eyelids and squint at the bright ceiling above. There was no panic since it was a Saturday and I really considered falling back into an alcohol induced coma.

Of course, I didn’t hear anything so I panicked and reached for my guitar. Sound came clear and unobtrusive. I’m not deaf. I’m not blind either. I think I might be too drunk or high to realize that I’m on some crazy fucked up trip through. I mean, the whole world can’t disappear in a day, can it?

Then I took a close look at the date: December 22nd, 2012. Yep: Doomsday, the apocalypse, End of Days, and all that bullshit was yesterday. It seems that for everyone else, it came true. Whatever it was. Maybe it was the rapture and Jesus slung down from heaven on a white horse to take all his followers up by golden carriages bringing them into ever loving peace and paradise in Heaven while simultaneously casting all the sinners to the burning pits of Hell to be sodomized and burned.

Hey, I did say I could be high. Whatever the case, I was alone. Completely and utterly alone. Of course, I was suspicious of my complete and utter lack of company so I decided to do what any relatively sane person would do when faced with a similar situation. I walked the streets of New York with nothing but my guitar strapped to my back...

Thursday, September 1, 2011


So I decided yesterday while I was in a daze from lack of sleep the night before that I would work on the website. That led to thinking up another short story collection which led to actual release dates of three other anthologies. (You can see all that here: Future Works)

Normally this wouldn't be a problem and I'd putter along to get things done at a good enough pace. But in some stroke of utterly insane genius I decided that all three collections would be released before the end of this year.

Am I insane? I do believe so. But I also believe that any author needs a bit of the crazies in order to actually be an author.

I mean, what person in their right mind would want to write all day, every day and edit the rest of the time without the guarantee that they would get paid at the end of the week? Unless of course they're Stephen King, James Patterson, Anne Rice, Dan Brown, John Locke or any other famous author.

I'm not too far gone (yet) though. I didn't quit my day job once my book got published. Good thing too or I'd be living out of a cardboard box by the 12 Mile Creek right now with only a laptop, a shopping cart of clothes and an old coffee mug to collect money.

I may be a bit delusional in thinking that I would make it over-night. And I have to admit, I suck at marketing. I'm also quite lazy and would rather spend my time writing or reading then actually sitting down and *GASP* promoting.

But I'm slowly starting to creep out from the bat-infested cave I've been hiding in (plus the bats were starting to look at me funny) and decided to seriously try this marketing thing. At least on weekends and evenings.

Back to the original topic of this post: I'm releasing three more short story anthologies. Yes. Three. How many months are left in the year? That's right, four. That's an anthology a month folks. Can I do it? I have no idea but I'm certainly going to try.

The first will be called Apocalyptic and be out sometime this month (I'm hoping for the 15th). It will feature stories of the so-called Doomsday - Dec. 21 2012. And for those interested, you'll get to meet my all time favorite creation: Daimin VanHelgrove. I talked about him in the last blog. Also, he's on the website. Twice I think. That's how much I love him. Plus he's been bugging the Hell out of me waiting to be written seriously.

The second anthology will be a Halloween Special entitled 'Tis Hallows Eve. This one will be the most fun as I don't have an idea for the cover yet and the six stories featured aren't even written. At least I know what they are. So I'll have to pull 30-40,000 words out of my arse and edit them in the next month, or less.

The final is set for release in November and will be called Hodge Podge because it will be a mixed theme of ideas ranging from lunatics (like myself) to homeless people to mermaids. I actually have 5 stories written for it and only have to add two more and edit the whole thing.

Am I insane? Oh I think so. Will I actually meet these self-imposed release dates? I certainly hope so. Will I have a social life in the next three months? Probably not. Will I get sleep? Nope. But I think it will be well worth it.

I leave you will some shameless self-promotion:
Small Slice of the Undead: A Zombie Anthology AVAILABLE NOW through Smashwords
Tale of the Twins Book 1: Gathering and Destruction AVAILABLE NOW through Authorhouse.

Buy them for the sake of all characters new, old and waiting to be loved by someone other than their creator. Plus they need to get out of the dark basement I've stashed them in. It's getting a bit crowded down there what with all the new stories I'm writing and old ones begging to be written. Ah, excuse me while I go feed them some utterly horribly fanfiction I've read.