Migration: Beginnings Is Here! Kindof…

My long, long wait to see this book available to the public is almost here – mostly.  So while Migration: Beginnings is going to debut on November 15th, 2016 in Kindle (electronic) format, I wanted to put together a print version as well.  There are still people out there that prefer to have their books in printed form, so they can hold on to it.  I know there are many books in my collection that I started out with electronic form, but bought the paperback version because I felt like I needed to have it.  Sometimes you just connect with a book and need that.

I put together and approved a paperback version on Amazon’s “CreateSpace.com”, which is a pretty cool site.  After getting the paperback copies, I made a slight change here and there, and then approved it to be published.  Only thing is, when CreateSpace gets the greenlight for approval, they do so immediately.  There’s no way to pause it or put it on pre-order.  Once you say it’s live, it’s live, and there’s no way to change it.

So if you were waiting for a printed copy of Migration: Beginnings, your wait is up!  You can head over to Amazon.com and search for it, click on the paperback version, and order away.  The Kindle version will be here in 21 days!

Migration: Beginnings Now Available For Preorder!

The first book in the Migration series, “Migration: Beginnings” is now available for pre-order on Amazon!  I went with Amazon for exclusive rights for the first 90 days because I wanted to see if Amazon Unlimited would actually help me grow my audience.  But after that initial 90 days, the book will become available on other platforms like Kobo, iTunes, and Smashwords.

Until then, if you’re interested in reading Migration: Beginnings, head on over to Amazon and you can check out the details, maybe preorder if you’d like.  Details are found by clicking on the cover below.

We Have Book Cover!

So writing isn’t something I complain about too often.  I can take an idea and run with it like nobody’s business.  Over the last few years, I’ve written countless stories and two books – my nonfiction travel book, “A Million Miles Amok“, and the soon to be released fiction book, “Migration: Beginnings”.  But the one thing I absolutely cannot do is draw, or even illustrate beyond stick figures.

That’s why it helps to have awesome, creative friends!  My friend Alice, who is of the artistic type, took what I spewed forth over dinner one night, and came up with a book cover for Migration: Beginnings – and it’s as close as possible to what I wanted without me doing it myself (which, as I said, I’m totally incapable of doing).

That said, here is the book cover for Migration: Beginnings.  Huzzah!

MIGRATION_Cover_2_lettering

(Click on it for larger size)

Migration Beginnings is almost here!

The thing that they don’t tell you about books is that, while they may take a couple of months to write, that’s probably the shortest part of the whole process.  Once it’s written, you’ve got months of editing to slog through, including professional editors who need to take a whack or two at your book.  Then there’s the fact that you need to submit to publishing houses and wait quite a bit more for them to come back with a say.

For me, I’ve decided to self publish.  I changed Migration Beginnings around a bit, including a new prologue that jolts the reader into finding out just what big things are about to come, and there was a fair bit of rewriting a couple of other parts.  Now that all the writing is done, I’m at the point where it’s been professionally edited and now returned to me.  I’ve got the arduous task of going through the changes one by one and deciding what sounds the best, and we’ll almost be through.

But wait, there’s more!  Yes, the last bit of detail that an author needs, especially if they are self publishing, is a book cover.  That is being taken care of by a dear friend, but I’m on their timetable, so we wait a bit more.

All this to say that Migration Beginnings, the adventures of a gay couple as they see the world around them change, and their role in the new world grow, is ever so much closer to being released!  This book was such a labor of love that in a way I’m almost hesitant to let it go.  But I hope that, when I do, people love it as much as I do.

More news soon!

First Book Published!

So Lisa and I have been working on a nonfiction travel book for the last couple of years.  Well I’m proud to say that as of 5:30pm Pacific today, that book is published!

Normally this wouldn’t be such a big deal. But you have to consider that this is the first book either of us have published!  

Here’s a blurb from my iPhone that shows the book available in the Apple iBookstore.  It’ll be available soon in Amazon’s store for their Kindle.

Update: The Kindle version of the book is located here.

Dealing With Rejection

So as writers, one of the things that you deal with most often when you want to get something published – by a publishing house, and not self-published – is the issue of rejection.  It’s not something that is easily brushed off, and it can negatively affect your mindset.

I originally submitted my Migration series to a publishing house, and after a couple of months, they gave me some good feedback with a, “Sorry, but we’re going to pass right now.  But make the changes and resubmit!”  I took it to heart, and made the changes that they asked for, then resubmitted.

Well, after making the requested changes and waiting more than four months, today I get the, “No thanks,” rejection email.  The publisher was nice, but the reviewer made it seem like I had offended them and not made any suggestions they gave.

Ehh…  Oh well.

The problem, however, is the self-doubt that comes out of the process.  Migration is a hard story to tell, because you have to build the world up before you can destroy it, and I do just that.  There’s a prologue that gives you some of the necessary data about the story, and then a 2 chapter buildup.  It all amounts to about 10,000 words that the specific publisher is saying needs to be cut.

Can I do it?  Can I hack my baby up into smaller pieces – going from the original 85,000 words, down to the 78,000 words post-initial submission rejection, to maybe 68,000 words?  Without sacrificing the whole of the story?

I get it – I really do.  And part of me wants to jump on the bandwagon and make those changes instantly; that’s the part of me that wants instant gratification, and seeks out approval.  But there’s the other part of me that wants to stand tall, tell the critics to get bent, and self publish.

So I’m going to compromise.  I’m going to hack it down some, and then see how I like it.  If I do, then I’ll go with the new version.  But if it sacrifices too much, then I’m going to bail, go back to my original storyline, and self publish.  Only time will tell what path I decide to go down.

But first, I’m going to self-publish our (me and my coauthor Lisa’s) nonfiction travel book.  I would like to get that out the door, published, and off my plate so that I can focus on the Migration series.

So that’s how my birthday went!  How about you?

Waiting, as they say, is the hardest part

So of course Migration: Beginnings, is ready to go.  Finished, polished, edited, and right now sitting with a publisher.  But beyond that, I don’t know what the status is, because it’s been 3 months since I’ve submitted the book to the publisher.  I keep hoping to hear, but at some point, you just have to cut your losses and move on.

I’ve decided that if I don’t hear from the publisher by the end of October, that I’m going to move forward with one more publishing house that my friend Kim says would be a good fit.  But if they say no or don’t get to me, then I’ll just move on to publishing the book myself.

I hate waiting.

But I guess I’m going into a business that has a ton of waiting time built in.  You’ve got your time writing, your time editing, your time waiting for responses.  And who likes all that waiting?  Especially if you’re looking for something by one of your favorite authors?  I think I’m bad on this side of the table – and then I realize that it’s me on the other side of the table when it comes to some authors that I love.  For Ken Goddard‘s “First Evidence” series, I had to wait a relatively short time between his first and second books in the series (20 months) and a long time between the second and third books in that series (11 years)!

So we all hate waiting, especially me.  New plan is to have an answer by the end of the year on the Migration series.  And if it’s self published, then the second book will be completed by the time the first book comes out.  Because why make other people wait, when it’s something I’m loathe to do myself?

One Book Down, One To Go!

So my “books in limbo” just got subtracted by one.  At least meaning in limbo by me.  The first book in the Migration series, my SciFi/Action/Adventure series, has been completely edited, polished, and sent off to the publisher for consideration.  This is the same publisher that I’d originally sent the manuscript to, and while they turned it down initially, they gave me some really good feedback and told me that if I made the changes, they’d be “more inclined to offer me a contract.”

I’m not taking this as gospel that they will still like the book and will want to publish it, but I’m still a bit hopeful.

So now I have to polish the non-fiction book that Lisa (my cowriter) and I worked on for NaNoWriMo 2013.  It’s been a long time coming, but it’s finally getting a lot closer.  I’ve got one more read through and some changes, then Lisa gets a last pass – and that book will be ready!  We’ll self-publish that one, though, along with my friend Adam’s custom drawn cover, so we’re close!

Writing can be such a blast, and it’s a cathartic process for many of us.  Hopefully the end results will be appreciated by the reading public!

Who has two thumbs and is going to try and publish 2 books this year?

This guy!

Okay, so the most that I’ve been blogging about here is about my book, Migration: Beginnings, and the next two books in the trilogy.  But actually, besides this series of fiction books, I’m probably going to publish a non-fiction book first.

Non-fiction, you say!  What is this nonsense?

Well, you see, before I took a stab at writing a SciFi/Action/Adventure trilogy, I actually wrote a travel book, coauthored with my writing partner Lisa.  It was about 100 pages and somewhere in the neighborhood of 55,000 words.  I wrote it for NaNoWriMo 2013, and turned it over to Lisa to edit – which was a massive undertaking.  Why?  Well, there are quite a few reasons, including the fact that the book is now just 33,186 words now that Lisa is done with it.  What can I say?  I’m mouthy!

But I digress.

Anyway, so our non-fiction travel book, which is aimed at anyone who is new to the world of traveling (but especially traveling consultants who are just starting out), is called A Million Miles Amok.  The manuscript is back in my hands now, and by Summer, the book will be completed and published – just ready to fill in the “Five Books for 99 Cents!” bin at your local megamart.

More details to come!

Ten Rules To Write By

Sometimes when you’re not writing, you’re reading about writing – if that makes sense.  Right now, I’m in a holding pattern for my second fiction book, because I’m truly not feeling it at the moment.  It’s okay; things happen that pause you from writing now and again.  Bad thing about the pause is that I’m enrolled in April’s Camp NaNo.  It’ll suck to not finish a NaNo, since I’ve finished the previous two times I’ve competed.  But you know what?  I have to do what’s right for me.

But I digress.

I came across a wonderful article by One Salty Blond titled “Ten useful writing tips from a frustrated editor“.  And while individual writers won’t have every single one of these idiosyncrasies in their stall of writing habits, they probably have at least one or two that they can take to heart.  I know that I’m guilty of a few of these…  For example, I try not to use “very” at all, because “very tired” sounds pedestrian, when “exhausted” is so much more descriptive.  I may have one or two, so when I’m done, I’ll go back through and search for them.  Writing can be a stream of consciousness for many people, and you may put words down on the page that you don’t mean.  That’s what editing is for – both self and professional.

Of all of the items on the list, I think I like “make powerful sentences stand alone” the best.  And I can’t describe it any other way than to paint you a scene.

Consider this:

Justin was ripped out of his sound sleep by some unknown noise that seems to echo off the darkened walls.  The only light coming in was from the window, a glint of moonlight shining through and casting eerie shadows across the foot of of the bed.  He waited, the only sound being a whisper of wind coming through the windowframe.  As he closed his eyes and turned over, he heard the doorknob click.  The door opened by itself.  Pulling the blanket to his chin, he watched as a pair of glowing red eyes glaring into the room.  He blinked, filled with terror until his roommate’s voice boomed through and the light was flicked on, nearly blinding him.  “Stop stealing my smokes!”

And now consider this:

Justin was ripped out of his sound sleep by some unknown noise that seems to echo off the darkened walls.  The only light coming in was from the window, a glint of moonlight shining through and casting eerie shadows across the foot of of the bed.  He waited, the only sound being a whisper of wind coming through the windowframe.  As he closed his eyes and turned over, he heard the doorknob click.

The door opened by itself.

Pulling the blanket to his chin, he watched as a pair of glowing red eyes glaring into the room.  He blinked, filled with terror until his roommate’s voice boomed through and the light was flicked on, nearly blinding him.  “Stop stealing my smokes!”

See how just by changing the spacing and breaking it out creates more tension?  So awesome…  I love the power of words!