Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Seasonal Stories from the Sagan

I don't have any new holiday stories this year, so I thought I post about the ones I have set in the Catalyst Chronicles universe. There are two of them published together under the name "Seasonal Stories from the Sagan." They're set during Twinned Universes, so it's best to be familiar with that book before reading them. Here's the universal link, a direct link to Amazon, and blurb if you're interested.

Two short stories set in the science fiction Catalyst Chronicles universe during the time of Twinned Universes. (Warning: contains spoilers for Twinned Universes.) Both storie

"A Solstice in Space"--Cass wants to celebrate the winter solstice with her friends and family, but they don't share her pagan beliefs. Can they create a ceremony that respects everyone's beliefs, or will she have to observe the solstice by herself? And how can you celebrate a solstice when you're not even on a planet?

"Snowballs in Space"--Paul's plans to have a snowball fight with his friends may land him in hot water with the Sagan's officers when he "borrows" a lot of materials to make fake snow.

s take place on the starship Sagan.


Monday, December 11, 2017

BundleRabbit

One of the reasons I like reading the Passive Voice blog is that the comments can be not only entertaining to read, but also useful. Last week, one of the discussions turned to discoverability. An author recommended the service Bundlerabbit. This is a website that specializes in box sets. Readers can come here to purchase box sets, and authors and curators can work together to create these box sets. I've set up an author account and put Twinned Universes in the Content Marketplace. I'll add a couple of my short stories once I convert them to the proper format. The site doesn't seem to accept permafree books, so I can't currently offer Lyon's Legacy or Seasons' Beginnings. That's a shame, as one of my goals for 2018 is to create a box set for the Season Avatars series, and Bundlerabbit looks like a simple way to do it. I'll have to do some research on box sets before I assemble mine. In the meantime, if you like reading box sets of books or want to offer up your books for possible inclusion in a box set, check out Bundlerabbit.

Wednesday, December 06, 2017

IWSG--2017 Rewind

The Insecure Writer's Support Group is "A database resource site and support group for writers and authors. Featuring weekly guests and tips, a monthly blogfest gathering, a Facebook group, a book club, and thousands of links – all to benefit writers!" Learn more about them on the website and Facebook Page.

This month's blogfest is co-hosted by Julie Flanders, Shannon Lawrence, Fundy Blue, and Heather Gardner. Here's our question for this month: As you look back on 2017, with all its successes and failures, if you could backtrack, what would you do differently?

This is a tough one to answer, at least for me. While I did meet my publishing goals for this year, both of the novels I started in 2017 are a long way from finished. Trying to find more writing time would have helped, but I'm not sure if that would be enough to get me past my current blocks on those projects. I need to focus more during my writing sessions and start with a sense of where the scene will go so I don't waste time.

On the marketing end, I probably should have sent out more frequent newsletters to my subscribers, though I don't want to send out so many I become annoying. I had planned to make some graphics with quotes from my books, but I haven't had much time for that either, even on Marketing Monday evenings. (Honestly, it can be difficult enough just keeping my subscriber list current.) I would also like to find other marketing techniques to try. At least this year-in-review gives me a chance to consider my goals for 2018.

How do you feel about your writing for this year? Will you be setting new goals for next year? Feel free to share in the comments.

Monday, December 04, 2017

Juggling Characters from Different Series

Although I've finished the Season Avatars series, the characters still call to me with other stories. I've planned for this with a spin-off series that I would start in 2019 or so, after I have a chance to outline the overall arc for the series and individual books in the series. Then I saw submission guidelines for a themed anthology that fits with some elements from the Season Avatars series, and the next thing I know, I'm working on a short story. Even if the story isn't chosen for the anthology, it'll help me establish characters and situations for the spin-off Selathen Avatars series, and I can also self-publish it. However, even though the story seems to be coming together relatively easily, it's taking writing time away from my current novel, Dryads to Discover. I would also like to return to "The Unnumbered World," a short story set in the Catalyst Chronicles universe and featuring Julia Kee as the protagonist. Finally, there's a fourth project, a middle-grade novel called Welcome to Costume City, that I started earlier this year and abandoned partway through the project.

While in one sense juggling these four projects may seem like a matter of setting priorities and time  management, there's also the added factor of what appeals to me. I find (not surprisingly) that it's easier to write characters I'm already familiar with than to develop new ones. However, if I always push new characters aside to spend time with my favorites, they'll never get developed. It seems like my best options are either to work on two projects at once (which is probably better in terms of keeping both stories fresh in my brain) or else speed up my projects so I can get through them faster. I imagine juggling stories and characters only gets harder as you write more stories. Hopefully at some point I'll have enough free time to write them all.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Remembering the Funny Side of George Harrison

To remember George Harrison on the anniversary of his death, I thought it would be good to celebrate his humorous side. Here he is on Saturday Night Live. The show had promised $3000 to the Beatles if they reunited on the show. George showed up hoping to collect the entire reward:



George also supported Monty Python and appeared on Eric Idle's TV show, though he didn't exactly cooperate when they wanted him to sing instead of pretend to be a pirate:



Even his music videos exhibited his sly sense of humor and a willingness to poke fun at himself and his problems:



That's why, in my heart, George and the rest of the Beatles will be forever Fab:


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