Status Updates

Status Updates

Main Focus: Foul Mouth 5 First Draft = 76k out of 125k estimate (61%)

Side Focus: Gush (Fantasy YA) Novel, First Draft = 6k out of 80k estimate (7%)

Monday, November 10, 2014

The Prisoners Cycle

THE PRISONERS CYCLE is perhaps best described as a series that isn't a series until it is very much a series at the very end of the series.  It's also not so much a world as an overworld where the worlds themselves reside in.

Don't think about it!  It's just turtles all the way down!

It began back before I'd accepted my life as an Indie Author instead of a Major League Publisher-Patting-You-on-the-Head Author (though given my sales this year I dare say Indie or not I've finally broken into at least the minor leagues!) when THE BETROTHAL was finished and languishing, THE FOUL MOUTH AND THE FANGED LADY was in my last edits, I was dicking around practicing with some fan fiction you lot will never see, and I didn't know what to do next.

It was the standing wisdom at the time that writing the second book of series before the series itself was published was a bad idea (again proving that the people who provide the standing wisdom for aspiring writers don't know what the hell they're really talking about) so starting right into THE FOUL MOUTH AND THE CAT KILLING COYOTES as a sequel seemed like a bad idea.  I also had the problem that all my other books and worlds I'd come up with were also series based...so that wouldn't work, right?

So I majorly brainstormed and came up with about 10 standalone book ideas that I could work on.  As is the nature of brainstorming, some of these ideas were much better than others or seemed more interesting than others, so I started in on writing what would one day become SKY-ISLAND 1827-E (alternate titles:  ROCKETS IN THE SKY; WOE, WOE, WOE, YOUR SKYBOAT; and HERE COME THE CLOCKERS).  I also piddled about with a book where the main character was a walking and talking tree, but like a walking, talking tree character would ever be usable or popular, right?!?!

Skip forward three years of Indiehood, four FOUL MOUTH books, an actual thing that might be a career and not a huge mistake, and looking at all those standalone books I realized...hey, these are all kind of about similar themes, aren't they?  Wouldn't it be cool if they were kind of connected like the worlds of Stephen King's Dark Tower or what Sanderson is doing with his Cosmere or...you know...Sliders or something?  And, hey...there's some weird spots where they really do connect...that's cool!

Thus began the idea of making standalone books that are still standalone books but books that will also allow interested readers to pick up on the wider mystery of what is going on and the connections between them.  I did this because the books themselves are different genres, have different characters and styles and POVS, and I didn't want to force people that for example like the Sky-Island world but don't like the Gush world (or vice versa) to HAVE to read them all, but if you wanted to you could get something extra out of it.

THE PRISONERS CYCLE is also an idea, not a UNIVERSAL TRUTH of my future like the FOUL MOUTH books are, where I have everything mapped out and plotted and obsessively planned.  They are instead books were I am trying something new, attempting to be creative, and especially to expand as an author just beyond doing what I'm already good at (first-person, character focused, urban fantasy with a lot of dick jokes).  It's all pay-to-play and experimental and I'm sure I'll succeed with some and fail with others and it could all implode before the end if not enough people are interested in them, but...I'm going to give it a shot and step out of my comfort zone, hopefully enough of you will step out of it with me.

Not everything beside the FOUL MOUTH books will be in THE PRISONERS CYCLE and even those book that are in THE PRISONERS CYCLE will be listed in their own specific world, not in the overworld itself when it comes to my list of published novels at the start of my books.  So you'd have to be a superfan and come to this blog and check this page to even see or know it exists.

Click the page link above for more info.  Excuse me as I get back to writing!

Friday, October 24, 2014

So It Goes Update

Just wanted to let everyone know I'm still alive and still working on the two projects (FM5 and Gush) I've been working on for awhile now.

I still have no estimate for when they might be completed other than being sure it won't be in 2014.  Don't fret if you don't see the status update move for a week or so and especially don't fret about the way the status update for Gush seems to be jumping around all over the place for my estimations.  I do use it to keep you all informed about what I'm doing day to day (because I know long silences are what make fans more nervous than anything else), but it does sort of become a problem when I'm starting a novel like I am with Gush.

I've been playing around with length and what to include in that book.  Do I write a bunch of training scenes?  Do I throw you right into the death race with a small intro a la Star Wars?  How long and how deep do I want the book to be?  This fluctuates when you're starting the process...which is why Gush has gone from 10 chapters to 16 chapters to 13 chapters as I added and cut the outline.  I even started WAY BACK WHEN, wrote 5k, decided it wasn't working, and cut it from the book.  What I've ended up with and what I think I'll keep is a bit of middle ground with not doing the full training/origin but beginning with our heroes arriving a week before said death race.  Yes, death race...with magic!  It's going to be a fun book!

One thing I'm not sure readers realize is that even when authors aren't "writing" we're still thinking.  I don't pretend that every author does things the way I do things, but for me "thinking" is an always on feature that helps the "writing" go much smoother and takes up a TON more time than the actual writing.  There are some scenes in the King Henry Tapes that I've played over in my head hundreds of times in dozens of alternate outcomes before I've even put finger to keyboard to write them.  The Paine reveal in FM3 was one of these...there's also a good one in FM5 and one coming up in FM7 that I continually obsess over to levels only equaled by Gollum with the One Ring.

This process is why more time is sometimes important and why I'm never going to be the kind of author that can pump out a novel ever 3-4 months.  I'm selfish...they're MY toys before I share them with you.

This is sometimes why its the scenes I haven't played through my head that take me the longest to get through.  Like the ones I've been working on in the last month.  Not that Pocket and T-Bone forcing King Henry to take a road trip in an RV hasn't been entertaining...but why would I focus on that when I can focus on...other things?

I guess I'll stop aggravating the fanbase and just summarize with:  still working on it, taking my time to make sure it's awesome, don't freak out, it's all going good, if you're well-behaved I might give you a FM5 sample chapter for Christmas.

Oh, also...I almost broke my arm!  That was a close one!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Not Quite Halfway There

Well...I've done it.  The "hard part" is over.  The school timeline for FM5 has a complete first draft.  Why is the school timeline the "hard" part?  Mostly because it lacks the consequences of the mainline and many of my favorite characters to pit King Henry against (Annie B/Paine/Vega/etc) are absent.  So I'm left to finding new ways to make pranking Welf fun and lots of scenes of teenage King Henry being a glorious little shit.  This is "hard" in that it's hard for me to push myself to focus on writing it when video games and books and reddit are things that exist.

But I did it!  It's a complete story still in need of some editing but it's done.  It tells of Plutarch's first battles at teaching King Henry all while the Three Queens begin maneuvering to remove a few of their least favorite students from the school before they themselves graduate.  At the moment it's almost 200 pages long by itself, so a pretty good chunk of story.

Which is why this post is titled the way it is.  The estimate is over 50% but I still have 11 chapters to write, all of them on the mainline (almost always longer than school chapters).  So I doubt we're going to come in at 100% again and will need some overtime.

But I did it!  We're getting there.  FM5 is alive!  I'll probably take a small break to work on a couple Gush chapters before returning to starting the mainline side of things.  I still think a 2014 release for either Gush or FM5 is doubtful, but miracles are a thing right?  Like there could be a miracle and Destiny won't launch and the NFL could go bankrupt and Dragon's Age 3 might get pushed back to 2015 and...

What you mean I gotta write?

Update- My ability to target prophecies of doom seems to be a thing, but not with any accuracy.  Just saying...after the week Destiny and the NFL have had that Dragon Age 3 might be in trouble.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Totally Non-professional Sky-Island Map and World Diagram

Sky-Island 1827 Shitty Map


World of the One Path Even Shittier Diagram

Hope that helps any confusion (I know it doesn't).

Small update:  writing really well at the moment!  Might finish the school timeline of FM5 in a few days!

Monday, July 7, 2014

What the Future Holds: Next Year, Next Decade, and My Whole Damn Life

Now that Sky-Island 1827-E is published I thought I'd go through what you fans can expect from me in the future.  I know most of you so far have come to my writing through THE KING  HENRY TAPES and that much more still will, but that's probably not going to stay the same in the years ahead.

Let's get this out there:  I'm not a one series writer who's going to pump out 40 King Henry books and then retire and have my as-of-yet-not-existent child pump out 40 MORE King Henry books.  More power to the authors that can do this and get a sense of total fulfillment, it's just not for me.  I've got a lot of stories in me and just creativity and ideas flowing out of my brain...some out of my asshole too, but mostly out of my brain!

You're going to get A LOT of King Henry books, but I'm not overstaying my welcome and even within that series I will try to keep reinventing and changing things up as necessary, like the School timeline finishing itself up in FM7 and the total change of pace from THE KING HENRY TAPES into THE MANCY WARS to cap the whole thing off.

But, it's going to end eventually, There is a Plan (and unlike Battlestar Galactica and Lost I'm not lying about it to keep you watching!).  Even in the meantime I will be taking breaks to work on other worlds and stories.  It's important to note that doing this doesn't actually affect my speed at writing King Henry novels.  It's not a zero sum game where in one world you will be getting two KH novels a year and in the other you'll be getting one.  What I've found actually happens is that in both worlds you still get the KH novel every 9-12 months, but instead of the other side novel coming out I'm just really fucking cranky and depressed that I can't focus in on writing half the time.

So all this being said, here's what the future looks like.

MY WHOLE DAMN LIFE

Here are the stories I plan to write by the time my eyes give out and my hands are decrepit and I'm farting in stores and no one complains about it because I'm so old.  Oh, how I look forward to those days...

*These names I'm giving are often vague or not final with only book estimates and genre-type because I'm a sneaky bastard that doesn't want to give a synopsis and have someone think "that's a great idea" and write it before I'm ready.

The Shinide Saga (5-10 Books)(Hyper-fantasy):  If I found out I was dying within the next five years, this would be the series I drop everything to write 24/7.  It's my first love, my baby, etc.  Why am I writing other stuff and not it?  Because I wanted to wait until I was ready to do it justice as an author.  I'm getting there but I'm not there yet.

The Five God Series (5 Books)(YA Epic Fantasy, Mage Coming of Age Story, Renaissance Era)

The Godborn World (One duology/One Trilogy/Possible Standalones)(Godpunk):  God of War meets Stargate meets Percy Jackson meets Bladerunner.

The Rii Enslavement (Duology)(Epic Fantasy, 1st Person):  Magic System revolves around emotions and their absence.

 The King Henry World (20 books possible)(12 Book THE KING HENRY TAPES)(3-5 Book THE MANCY WARS)(3 book THE DEAD WORLD):  Urban Fantasy into Epic Fantasy Morph.

The Prisoners Cycle (endless possibilities, multi-genre):  A series of standalone books all set in the same world but different...well, you'll see.  Sky-Island 1827-E and Gush are both in this "series".

Eat the Future (post-apoc, dystopian, big monster, neo-western standalone):  An extension of the world I created in Prime Pickings (which would be the first chapter).

Djinn (time-travel, thriller, horror, standalone):  a story about reliving high school that goes wrong.

The Next Decade

So yeah, I've got a lot of books in my head!  But what about the next decade?  Well, I plan to focus in on 3 of those worlds mentioned above.  By the time I turn 40 (yeah, I'm 30, it's not as terrifying as promised, mostly because I skipped all that marriage and divorce stuff to do the starving author thing) I believe THE KING HENRY TAPES will have been finished and I'll be part way into THE MANCY WARS.

I'm also looking at continuing THE PRISONERS CYCLE (plan to put up an About Page on this by the end of the year) which as I said includes Sky-Island 1827-E, a follow up book, and a trilogy set in that "world" as well as Gush + Gush sequel, and a few other stories with different characters.  The important thing to note with THE PRISONERS CYCLE, unlike the rest of everything I talk about, is that it's "possible" that they might be written.  It's the one thing I'm doing where it's all pay-to-play and something I'm taking one book at a time.

The 3rd series I plan to work on is the aforementioned GODBORN WORLD.  As to the name of "godborn" it's one of those things were you consider "should i be different and really creative" or should I just get lumped in with Mistborn or Dragonborn and all the other borns.  I decided there's more than enough creativity in the world to let the name be a little generic.

Which leads us into...

The Next Year

Finishing FM5 and Gush, starting the first GODBORN book (no title atm beside the stand-in of CHAINS) and FM6.

Pretty simple really (also a crap-ton of writing!).  I just wanted to write this to let you fans know I'm very committed to this author thing, I see it as my future and my life for a long time to come, it's what I've wanted to do since I was 12 and I'm lucky as hell that I get to live in the time period where Digital Publishing showed up to start a publishing revolution.

I know it's scary being a fan.  You love these worlds but really have no control over them.  An author can just faff about or get addicted to coke and pornstars or...other stuff.  Nothing you can do about it...beside writing Welf/KH slash fanfiction (please don't do this!).  So there you go, there's my plan for the years and years ahead of us.  Hopefully all of us make it to the end!  In the meantime, stick with me through this journey and we'll kick some ass and take some names together!

Now, because I've written this, here comes the alien invasion in 3...2...1...