Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Reviews are Friends...Not Posts

I know pointing you to reviews of my books by other bloggety types is not a substitute for my own clever posts. I'm going to keep doing it now and again though.

My good friend and brother-in-law, Brent Wescott, over at Building Castles on the Beach just wrote a review for my book along with several others. He is apparently a slow reader (who knew?), but I'm glad he finally finished, liked the book, and got the surprise ending.

The Crystal Bridge also got reviewed at Word Spelunking. Isn't that the greatest name for a book blog? Strap on your headlamp and explore the beautiful mysteries that are hidden deep within the words. She also has a cool name. Aeicha. I have no idea how to pronounce it, but I have always liked different names. I want to name a child Tadlan or there. I also let Aeicha give away a copy of Zombies at the Door, Planning for the Inevitable. She did more than that, she went and reviewed that book too. How awesome is that? I'll tell you how awesome...much!

I should have more reviews to share shortly. I have an interview for a podcast or two this week. I also plan on putting the velociraptor on youtube soon...against all my better judgement. I am also very close to starting book two of the Lost Shards series, the sequel to The Crystal Bridge, called The Glass Spiral. I'm getting excited to write it.

If you've read the first book, go ahead and keep reading. If you haven't...well, shame on you and don't keep reading until you have. Spoilers ahead!!

Book two begins where the last one left off. Here are some questions that will be answered:

Will they ever make it home? I don't know yet.

Will Rho make another appearance? Yes, of course.

Will Rho be the main villain this time? No.

Will Lyle find happiness and true love? Yes and yes, eventually.

Will more people die? Possibly...sorry.

Will we see Aren's and Kaden's powers evolve? Definitely a YES!! So Excited to push them further.

Who will be important? Aren and Kaden will be big as you expect. James will be there in the beginning and Lyle in the end. Dveldor, Hasla, and Taggers will show up for a bit too. But, look for Penny to play a large role along with a couple new god-like characters. I can't tell you any more without giving anything away. Oh, it's gonna be good!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Reviews and Craziness

This will just be a quick post.

I've been spending a large amount of time submitting my novel to book review blogs, hoping that more people will be exposed to my writing and decide to take a look. I've gotten a few people expressing interest, but most have such a huge stack of reading material that they either turn me away or tell me it will be months. I'm fine with the wait. I can be patient and am just happy that more people want to read it.

One person read it in like two days and posted a review. Some bad, but mostly good. I'm happy with having some issues to overcome and work to do. It is my first novel after all. Even the greatest authors have mistakes in their first. Here is a link to the review. And another link to a little interview with her. Thank you all for the support. I am nothing without my readers.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Things I Learned

I had my first public appearance as an author yesterday. I met with a high school book club that is about to read my novel, The Crystal Bridge. I'll be heading back in a month after they finish reading. There were a few surprises. I'll share some of those lessons learned from the experience.

1- I really can talk about my book, writing, and publishing intelligibly for a long time. I was super nervous that no one would have questions and we would just stare at one another. Maybe I'd get out ten or twenty minutes worth of stuff and then look dumb. That wasn't the case. They had questions and I filled most of an hour. I probably could have filled another hour, but they had to go to class.

2- Wearing a sweater is a good idea. I sweat more than any human should when I'm nervous. I changed shirts like four times and looked at a couple jackets before I left my house. I then threw on a sweater at the last minute. It was a great choice. They couldn't see how nervous I was, even if my shirt was sticking to me underneath it all. I looked calm and confident. I don't know what I'll do in the summer.

3- I should remove the bit about a velociraptor impression at the end of my book. Someone flipped to the back and read my About The Author section. She wanted to see the velociraptor. I was super embarrassed, but did it. It involves me loping across the room, screeching like a crazed lizard. I think the kids thought it was fun, but they may also think I'm a crazy person.

4- I like talking about writing. Not only did I find I had the words, I also didn't struggle with them. I didn't say "um" or "uh" or stutter a lot. The only time I stuttered for a bit was right after I did the velociraptor and I was also blushing. Then I warmed back to the subject at hand. I enjoyed discussing the writing process and the words flowed from me rather smoothly. This was a surprise. I haven't done public speaking in a long long time. I expected it to be harder, but I guess passion for the subject helps more than I imagined.

5- Sitting on a desk with your feet on a chair makes you look cool. At least I felt that way. I didn't have to stand awkwardly at the front of a classroom, unsure what to do with my hands. I didn't have to lean on a podium with a big block of wood between me and them. I didn't have to sit at a table on a stage feeling alone and isolated. I got to sit just slightly above everyone and talk to them like they were my friends. I felt awfully cool...I assume I looked the part too...even with the sweater.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Insecurity and Soup

I missed the Insecure Writer's Support Group post last week. Tuesday night my wife turned into a soup sandwich. I spent all night and part of the morning taking care of her. I was too exhausted the next day to do much of anything. I think we laid on the couch and watched a lot of tv.

My wife is feeling much better now, not so soupy. So, I'm moving on with the support post.

Despite not posting anything, there's still plenty of insecurity and support surrounding me and my writing. I've sold five copies of my book this month. Painful. I knew it would slow down before the holidays, but I wasn't expecting this. I hope that things pick up with all those new tablets and ereaders people will get in December.

I've submitted my novel to over thirty book review blogs this week. Many of these will choose not to read my book. Many will not get around to it for months. I'm okay with both of these. I know I don't have unlimited time. Neither do these kind folks out there who love to read and share what they like. I'm going to be patient. It gives these blogs more time to add followers and for readers to get used to their shiny new tablets anyway.

Being self published means I don't have to rush to sell all my copies in print so the publisher will print again. I can wait and let my audience grow bit by bit. I can fix typos. I can work on my next book. I'm thankful for my friends on here who have been crazy supportive. You are amazing human beings and I am humbled to know you, even if in just some weird digital sense of the word.
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