Status Updates

Status Updates

Main Focus: Foul Mouth 5 First Draft = 52% (100k estimate)

Side Focus: Gush (Fantasy YA) Novel, First Draft = 8% (13 chapter estimate)

Friday, November 25, 2011

Writer Lockdown

I've been a busy bee this year.  5 works out, all that formatting, editing, keeping betas in line, wrangling reviewers, getting Amazon to make some of my stuff free, etc.  But writing wise...not that hot.  This looks to be the least productive year I've had in three years.

I know some people can go all social butterfly and that's how they get their work noticed and done, but me...I'm much more the mad genius locked in his laboratory.  Either I'm writing or I'm doing promo, not both.  This year, promo has consumed my time.

I'm frankly sick of it.  Maybe this will cost me readers that one extra tweet would have grabbed, but I find it hard to care.  I need to do this writer-style, not marketer-style.  Even assuming I write all the way into my eighties, I don't have enough time on this Earth to get out all the material that is already in my head.  Oh to think about some of the worlds and characters we're never going to get to visit together just because I'm human and not an evil cyborg...

Alas...

So...WRITER LOCKDOWN.

I'm ripping the mouse and keyboard off this baby and throwing them into the closet, I'm taking the laptop off WiFi, I'm giving the Xbox a very stern talking to about letting me play with it so often lately, and I might even give Kathy Bates a call.

RR will not be on the net much...for December or for 2012.  If you need to contact me about a review for my books, hit up my email and expect a wait in answer.  If you just want to send fan-mail...well, I like fan-mail, only again: expect a wait.  Hopefully I'll eventually sale a million copies and have some extra cash for a assistant, and a cover artist, and a great copy editor, and a guy to walk around behind me and say "Remember the Athenians".  But for now:  expect a wait.

You should however, be happy.  This means more work coming out from me.  Probably...no promises.  But I expect an uptick in production without promo holding me down.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have a geomancer to do some business with...

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

No More Reviews from RR

I actually really do love writing reviews, mostly to get cheap laughs with puns (YAY PUNS!), but also to defend good books and to destroy over-pushed bad books.  Being both an Indie writer and a semi-successful reviewer has been something I've gone back and forth over whether it was..."cool".

Before last weekend I could safely claim that even thought I had novels for sale, I wasn't in competition with these people.  I mean, let's be honest, I had sold a grand total of 50 books, with another 50 given out to reviewers.  That's not prime-time, that's minor leagues...maybe even tee-ball.

In no way, shape, or form, was I in competition or a peer of some of these Big 6 writers I was kneeling down before or bashing over the head with a lead-pipe.

But I'm not sure I can say that any longer.  The BETROTHAL went free and now I have six thousand copies floating around in the ether after four days...and a week or two to go before I can switch that drain off.  Sales of FOUL MOUTH have also picked up to a few copies a day.  Looking at the future I can only imagine that this is going to increase, especially with sequels coming next year (probably...no promises...back up off me!).

Maybe I'm not Major League yet, but the GM just gave me a reminder that it's coming.  So why not stop reviewing my soon-to-be peers now?  It's a good time for it.  The only book to come out for the rest of the year I was interested in having an opinion on was Ilona Andrews...and everyone already knows Andrews rules Urban Fantasy, so why do I need to say it?

It is kind of a shame...I never did break into the Amazon Top 1000 Reviewers...and I was very close.  It will just have to be one of those things I never accomplished, up there with not climbing Everest (big mountains and freezing to death are so not me) or missing out on my high school senior prom (no, not because I couldn't get a date...the girlfriend lived out of town...me, geek?  Never!).

If you're REALLY into my thoughts on the books I read, there's always Goodreads, which I'll keep updating with star ratings, if not explaining them (why did he give MY PET GOAT 5 stars?  We'll never know...).  I'll also probably casually mention books I think rock and Spec-Fic I think everyone should be reading (Kameron Hurley) in general blathering posts I make in the future.

But puns?  No...the puns are dead.  Or at least unintended (LOOPHOLE)...

Saturday, November 19, 2011

The Betrothal is FREE...for a limited time...

In honor of that week in November I've set The Betrothal: or How I Saved Alan Edwards from 40 Years of Hell to FREE on a number of different websites and reading devices.  As an Indie this is the easiest and most effective form of publicity and reader outreach that I have.  Getting the book in your hands, letting you be my little minion and spread the word.  MUA-HA-HA-HA......

The Betrothal by Richard Raley on Amazon Kindle

The Betrothal by Richard Raley on Barnes and Noble Nook

The Betrothal by Richard Raley on Apple iTunes


Or you could just search your various reading devices..."Raley" usually does the trick  If you want some FUNNY, Betrothal will provide some FUNNY.  If you want some action...or pirates...or ninjas...maybe they'll be in the sequel, but no promises...

Friday, November 18, 2011

Reviews and More Reviews

A group of reviews came in for my books and since I'm trying to be lazy and not create any content for this website at the moment, here's some links for you lot.

THE BETROTHAL

Bee's Knees Reviews (5 stars)
With a quick-witted, laugh out loud, book you're bound to read with a smile on your face.

Miss Lynn's Books and More (5 stars)
If you like romantic comedies then you will thoroughly enjoy this book.
Butterfly-o-Meter Books (5 stars)
It's become my no.1 emergency read for those bleah moods, it's instant good mood.
THE FOUL MOUTH AND THE FANGED LADY


Reading and Writing Urban Fantasy (5 stars)
The Foul Mouth and the Fanged Lady is now all cozy in my shelf of the top ten favorite books I have ever read.
Stories of My Life (5 stars)
I wasn’t sure of this book when I got into it, which only goes to prove how sometimes you just can’t go cover shopping: because, could you please say “LOVE” a little louder?


So far it looks like people like them.  The wait for the first dreaded One Star Review continues...

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Real Review: The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson

He always gets the best covers!

Preface: I love me some Brandon Sanderson when he's doing his thing and creating new worlds and magic systems. But I'm not a straight out fanboy. I call him on his quirks and weaknesses when they pop up. First Mistborn book? On. One of my favorite spec-fic books released in the last five-ish years. Parts of "The Way of Kings"? Also on. The Mistborn 3 relationship between Eland and Vin? OFF. Storm you? OFF...also one of the most laughable curse phrases I've ever heard.

The reason I tell you this is to let you know that if Sanderson had went overly G with "Alloy" where some serious Rated-R was required, I'd call him on it.

But I'm not calling him on it this time.

There was no point in this novel where I thought...that feels weird. The romantic subplot is still only PG, but here it works fine. The characters aren't married and Sanderson actually increased what he usually shows. He even admits that characters have these physical bodies that other people might find desirable. We also see no Earth-based cursed words but again, it worked fine. I also think Kelsier would have gotten a hell of a laugh out of "Survivor's Spear".

But what's right? What works? Well...this is a very fun read. It's Mistborn as Steampunk. If you're an action junkie you'll love it. If you're a magic junkie then you'll REALLY love it. Allomancy...so much FUN. All the different combinations make for some great heroes and great villains as the different styles within the magic systems clash with each other. A tight plot, a little mystery, Sanderson's usual hints of foreshadowing, and you have yourself a winner.

Why only 4 stars? It's short. It all feels like the side project it very much is. Finally the main character of Wax, who I never bought as forty-years-old. This is a nitpick however, mostly...it's short.

4 stars. And I want more!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Where We've Been...Where We're Going

This has been a completely whirlwind year for me.  I started out thinking:  get published.  Even though I was interested by the new Indie movement, even if I saw the artistic advantages it contained and maybe even the financial advantages it might contain in the future, I didn't jump immediately into the pool filled with under-edited and badly-covered sharks.

I think some of the reluctance came from how much time I'd been building to the whole agent/publisher hunt.  I started working on BETROTHAL in May 2008 with that goal and suddenly it was January 2011 and it would take me a few more months to accept that the publishing world had changed while I'd toiled away on my first two books.  Borders ready to die, Kindle dominate.  Big changes in the air.

January/February/March wasn't a total waste.  Lots of good ideas sprang up in that period, first as short stories and eventually as novels I'll one day write.  It also saw me hit up many literary agency and short fiction magazine in futile gestures towards a dying paradigm.  It was this process itself that cured me.  That set me on my different new road towards becoming an under-edited/badly-covered shark myself.

The tradition route of Agent--->Publisher is the most chaotic...badly-developed...system I've ever seen.  By the time I actually sent out my query letters I was praying not for success, but for rejection.  If the query letter stage was that mismanaged then the rewriting and publisher seeking probably would have caused me to go brain dead.

As those letters were browsed and thrown away across the country probably without even a minute's examination I turned to this new invention and got to work.  I can't believe how artistically freeing it turned out to be.

In the last six months I've published two novels in two completely different genres, one taking advantage of the new technology in its footnotes and the other taking advantage of not having an editor tell me how many times I can curse per page or that I'm making the main character too rough.  I've published a short story which I'm able to give away for free to thousands.  I've published a novellete, the first of a series of serial novelette/novellas that also takes advantage of the new technology.

That's a hell of a year, but I've also learned a lot more:  I've learned how to make not-so-bad covers, I've learned how to use fonts and type, I've learned how to convert ebook files, I've learned all the joys of formatting, I tweet, I blog, I review in my own take-no-prisoners style and I've figured out the whole reviewer-blogger network...which, okay, reminded me a bit of the agent thing with all the different rules for requests, but don't tell them that.

Oh...there might have been something else going on that I don't talk about any longer too.

This is the proudest year of my life...but I've got a lot of life left in me.

What does RR have in store for you over the next few years?

Tons of stuff.

First and foremost will be The King Henry Tapes.  FOUL MOUTH 2 will be finished in the next couple months and FOUL MOUTH 3 is already outlined.  Actually the whole series is outline, if not chapter by chapter, then generally the flow of all 12 books.  Expect lots of King Henry Price over the next few years.  And Ceinwyn Dale.  And some T-Bone.  Maybe a little Annie B...

I've started a sequel to THE BETROTHAL.  I don't have a firm idea on when it will be done.  I'm kind of iffy on the sequel and while there's some Funny so far in the draft I have some fears for it.  Mostly I just saw a trailer for another "American Pie" movie and I really don't want to end up doing that...  If the sequel doesn't meet my standards I'd rather scrap it than just pump something out for quick cash.

EATERS will continue.  SLIME DINNER and SETTLE DOWN are already coiling around in my screwed up little brain.  There might be more after those two, one of the fun things about writing a serial is I don't write with the future, I just let to story go where it may.

Then there's the biggy, my first...I guess I'd call it more complicated novel.  We'll just call it CHAINS for now, though the title will change by the time it's done.  You'll hear more about it in 2012, for now, my plate is very full.