Friday, September 4, 2015

Like tumblers on a lock (when a new story comes together) / Happenings In The Outhouse 04-Sept-2015

The tumblers fell in place yesterday morning.  And I mean, perfectly in place.

I've been working on the first draft of the third novel in the Central Division Series, and at first I didn't feel the original plot was enough to hold through the entire novel.  I added a second major plot to fill it out.  My thought was to add a more realistic feel to big city investigators, juggling multiple cases (even high profile ones) at once.

As Arnold Schwarzenegger has said on multiple occasions in his movies: "Big mistake."

(insert smiley face emoticon or appropriate meme here)

As each of the major plots for the third story grew, I quickly realized I had two novels in my hands.  Not just one.

I thought a lot about the major thriller novels, movies, and TV series, and how they were set up.  I realized that to pack so much in would be . . . well, a mistake.  It would confuse the readers, something I don't want to do.

So, what was once one novel is now two.

I'm about 8,000 words into the third novel, which will have to be dissected now that I have to take the second story line out.  No worries.  I'm very excited for the change.

In the meantime, both of the novels in the Central Division Series are available at all major ebook outlets.  Here is a link to my website, which has retail links to places from Amazon to Google Play.

And interesting sidenote: here is a recent Washington Post article about the small-town where I currently live.  Very well-written, and an eye-opener for many.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Back in the saddle / Happenings In The Outhouse 31-Jul-2015

Didn't think you'd ever hear from me again, did you?

A lot has happened in the past few months, one of which is the failure of my trusty laptop--I'm writing this on another computer, by the way.  I've researched and found the laptop I want.  Now it's just to get off my butt and buy it.

A few months ago, I also published Straight Razor.  It's currently $2.99, exclusive with Amazon for the near-future, and it's also free for those in the Amazon Kindle Unlimited program.

This week was also our writers group meeting.  There was only one member present, aside from myself, and it was a wonderful meeting.  This young writer is very talented and is nearing the end of her first fantasy novel.  We discussed how her writing has changed from the very beginning, and how not to get in the habit of endless editing when you can either hit PUBLISH or send it off to a publisher.

I promise to start writing more.  Well, I have been writing, but it's longhand in a notebook.  It's interesting to do so, because it forces one to think more.

Okay, what am I writing?  The third novel in the Central Division Series.  I have a few chapters written so far, and it's going very well.

Once again, if you wish to pick up an ebook copy of Straight Razor, I'd be grateful if you did.  Sales have been decent, and I'm contemplating whether or not to keep the Amazon exclusivity when it runs out the end of August.

Friday, March 20, 2015

I'm still here / Happenings In The Outhouse 20-Mar-2015

Yes I am.

I'm still here.

Still writing.

It may be slow going, but editing Straight Razor is still moving along.  My temporary publication date has been pushed out another month--for now I'm keeping the date to myself, but as soon as I get closer I'll share it.

For now, I've adjusted my schedule to work more on writing in the morning.  I typically get up at six, and I joked with my wife the other night that I should get up at four.  I was a little serious, but I may adjust it to . . . oh, five thirty or so.

For now, I'm still healing and each day I'm getting better.

Friday, March 6, 2015

When life feels like an episode of House

Everyone loves the TV series House.

Well, my life feels like it could be completely scriped from that show.

My writing has been on a stalemate.  For the past week, I've been battling . . . hiccups.  Yes, you heard right.  Hiccups.

And not just a mild tickle either.  Hiccups that feel like I am choking to death.  In the end, my doctors have said it was more than likely from an allergic reaction to a medication I had been taking for my ITP (low platelets).

Needless to say, I am no longer taking that medicine.

But yet the battle rages on, gradually getting less and less in frequency of hiccups.

I'm sure not too far along the horizon I'll look back on this experience and . . . oh, hell, I'll look back and say how much it sucked.

Because it does.

Don't worry, I'll still keep working.  Reviews of Guest of Honor keep coming in, and several are either 4 and 5 stars.  Many are flattering.  Thanks to those who have.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Wake up call

As you may have noticed, yesterday I did not post a "Happenings In The Outhouse" post.

Frankly, there are two reasons for this: first, I'm still editing Straight Razor and I do not have any new news to report.

The second reason?

Last Sunday night, I was taken by ambulance to the ER.  I honestly thought I was having either a heart attack or stroke, but it ended up being a seizure brought about by a medication I was taking.

I have low platelets, and on the 20th my platelet count was around 15,000 (normal starts at 150,000).  I was given a steriod medication to help boost the platelets.  Sunday night, my whole left side seized up and ended up passing out on the floor.  Before I knew it, the ambulance was taking me to the ER.  This whole week I've been recovering (no, I'm still not 100% but I'm much better than before) and not giving it 100% on edits.

Next week though, I plan on ramping up with edits.

My April 1st deadline still may not be a reality but I'm working at it.

I am so thankful for the community I live in.  It may be a small town, but big in heart.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Trying my hand at Google Play / Happenings In The Outhouse 20-Feb-2015

For several months, I have not been exclusive with Amazon.  Not for any of my titles.

However, of all the publishing platforms, I'm in, one still remains.

The Google Play Book Store.

From what I've read, it's not easy to upload into the store.  And, from what I've seen so far, it is not easy at all.

In the simplest terms, you need an EPUB file of your book to upload.  I created one.  It was rejected.  Not sure why.

But I will keep trying . . .

I am roughly halfway through this round of edits for Straight Razor.  I gave myself a self-imposed deadline of April 1st.  At the rate I'm going, I may not make it.

Then again, I might.

I just have to keep at it.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Thank you Mr. Edison / Happenings In The Outhouse 13-Feb-2015

I'm sure by now we've all heard the stories about Thomas Edison, the man who invented the incandescent light bulb.  After failing 10,000 times, someone asked him about how he dealt with the failures.

"I didn't fail 10,000 times," he said.  "I found 10,000 ways not to create the light bulb."

Or something like that.

At work yesterday, there was an opportunity in my department (at my day job) for at least three people to do a year-long training, much of it in the field.  I apologize I will have to be a little cryptic at this point, for I cannot disclose the company nor the details of the opportunity.  Over fifty people applied for this opportunistic position.  Only a handful were chosen to be interviewed.

A young lady I know was quite upset she was not chosen for this--BTW, I did not apply for this opportunity, for it required a lot of travel commitment, and I did not see it as a move I should be taking in my career.

Anyway, the lady asked me what more she could do next time to be chosen.

This struck me as odd, for I have had a complete turnaround in my thinking over the past few years.  Over fifteen years ago, I spent a lot of time querying agents, the vast majority of which rejected me outright.  I felt like a failure, even though I kept writing and kept querying, all without any positive results.

Hence the reason I pursued the indie publishing arena.  Instead of waiting for someone to pick me, I have picked myself.

Choose yourself, as James Altucher says quite often on his blog and podcasts.

So that's what I did.  And that's what I do.

Is that what everyone should do?  I don't know.  Sorry, that's the best answer I can come up with.  I don't know.