Once upon a time, I thought this was a good idea. . .

Finished this latest set of proof revisions. Hopefully that was the last pass, but we’ll see. Submitted a possible better picture for the author bio page, and now we’re at the 90% point on having a finished cover.

Also coordinated with someone about helping do the e-book layout.

One of these days, there might even be writing done in this house, but it’s not looking good for today.

Post addendum:

Between this experience and the joy of trying to organize the Kickstarter for my short story collection, if anyone ever asks me if I want to self-publish again, I pray that you’re either faster than me or at least wearing a metal cup.

That is all.



Boring meetings – 0, Author – 1!

Let’s here it for boring meetings. Thanks to getting trapped in a meeting I had no business being in today, I got a great start on the revised Steel on Target. I’ve written over 2300 words on it as well as completely plotting out what I want to do differently with this version from the earlier one as well as designing the world this story will take place on and mapping out the path of my heavily put-upon cav troopers.

It mostly follows the design of the earlier versions, but I think we found a better place to start rather than in media res, which is how the first two versions kicked off. Also, this allows me to introduce the new technology instead of having to cram it into the first couple of chapters and overwhelming the readers with geek-speech.

So, all things look pretty good and I should be able to salvage a lot of stuff from the earlier versions with some judicious editing (read – show no mercy).

Also doing the coordination thing to ensure Terra Incognito is going to hit its deadlines so I can do a limited release at Brooklyn Book Festival and then the big release of it at Rocket City Lit Fest.

But, now, it’s time to call it a night.

One project down, a gazillion more to go. *grin*

OK. Strikeforce Falcon #2 – “Operation Komodo” is off to the editor. *cues the band*

What next? Well, along with finishing the work on Terra Incognito and For a Few Gold Pieces More, I just fired up the ol’ computer on Steel on Target. Been a while since I worked on this story, so I really need to review where I was, what I want to keep, and how best to get this thing moving on a regular basis.

Steel on Target, you ask? Yes, this is the Military SF story I’ve been working on for quite a while. Got put aside when I was doing all those short stories/novellas for Musa and Pro Se. Now, it’s time to dust it off and get to hammering it out.

Plus, I have a few other irons in the fire. You knew I would. *grin*

Shore Leave 2015 is in the books

Back and (semi-)recovered from Shore Leave this past weekend. It was a fantastic time and it was good to catch up with friends I hadn’t seen in a while as well as making new ones.

Wound up getting there late Friday but still plenty of time to set up before the Meet the Pros. Had fun talking to the people coming by about my stuff (both old and new), but they were showing Guardians of the Galaxy in the ballroom, so the crowd for the Pros was a lot lighter than usual. Unfortunate, but I guess tight schedules are tight. *sigh*

Enjoyed visiting with everyone after the gathering (even if they do close the bar at the Hunt Valley Wyndham way too darn early. *sigh*). Hung around the lobby until almost 2:30 and then drove home just in time for the alarm to go off to start the next day.

(Well, it felt like I had just laid down before the alarm yelled at me.)

The Saturday panels were well worth dragging myself out of bed for. I was on the Alternate History panel where we discussed steampunk, gaslight, secret history, alternative history, dieselpunk and why the heck we write in any of those genres, where we get info, and how do we choose what we want to warp.

That was followed by Writing Tips for Aspiring Writers. We had a varied group on the panel. If the audience got anything out of that panel (and there was a LOT of good advice given out) is that there is no magical button. What works for one person does not necessarily work for another. You have to experiment to see what you’re most comfortable with. Also, you must “write” to be a writer. Thinking about writing doesn’t count. Research doesn’t count (although it’s fun), Plotting doesn’t count. Only writing counts, so get your computer/tablet/pen and paper/papyrus/stone and chisel and get to work!

The Crowdfunding panel was VERY useful for me (and hopefully for the audience too *grin*). Everyone on the panel, but me, had run one or multiple successful Kickstarters or Indygogo’s. I felt like I was in the Shark Tank because all of them started asking me about my planning, how I was going to advertise, etc., etc., etc.. Yikes! However, I now think I’m ready to start moving on this once I get finished getting Terra Incognito out there and can concentrate on For a Few Gold Pieces More.

Last panel of the day was the Writer Beware panel. Good audience with good questions. I have to thank Kathleen David for helping me out on that panel. Her experience as a former editor really helped the new(ish) authors in the audience see how the “other side” of the business sees things.

I didn’t go to the masquerade because I was doing my radio broadcast for the Gaming World Entertainment Network. It was amazing. People would come by and talk to me, but as soon as I asked if they wanted to talk about SF or the con to my audience … poof. It was like watching the Roadrunner vanishing with just that little puff of smoke left behind. Still, the show went well and I had fun visiting with all the off-air people.

Sunday didn’t quite go as planned, but the Writing Short Stories panel was well attended for a Sunday and I hope we answered most of the questions people had. I had hoped to get to do the Historical Fiction Writing Workshop, but it was scheduled against the Short Story panel. *sigh again*

Still, all in all, it was a a fun convention. Of course, the best part about Shore Leave is it’s a fantastic chance to catch up with everyone. Had a fantastic visit with Dayton Ward, Kevin Dilmore, David Mack, Scott Pearson, Allyn Gibson, William Leisner, Jim Johnson before the panels got going on Sunday. Also enjoyed speaking with Rigel Ailur, Glenn Hauman, Christopher Bennett, Peter and Kathleen David at breakfast that morning. Got to hang out with Kelly Meding, Phil Giunta, Steven H. Wilson, Steve Lesnik and Renfield at Meet the Pros, and Dave Galanter, Keith DeCandido, Mark MacDicken, Howard Weinstein, Marco Palmieri Aaron Rosenberg, Danielle Ackley-Mcphail and Mike McPhail, John Jackson Miller, Russ Colchamiro, Michael Jan Friedman, Joshua B. Palmatier, Amy Griswold, and a host of others to whom I apologize for not remembering your names.

Can’t wait to do this again next year.

Amongst chaos . . . writing!

20 of 34 pages of Operation Komodo edited tonight.

The companion novel to For a Few Gold Pieces More plotted out today and a rough outline is taking shape.

Another noir novel outlined.

I’d say, it was a pretty productive day for writing all the way around.

Shore Leave 2015

All right, along with trying to write and trying to coordinate a book release and trying to coordinate a Kickstarter campaign, I’m also still doing conventions this year. Soooo . . .

Here’s my current schedule for Shore Leave 2015:


10pm-12am Meet the Pros (mass signing by the authors in attendance. I will have my latest books if you haven’t picked them up by now.)


10 am Steampunk and Alternate History Salon A
11 am Writing Tips for Aspiring Authors Derby
1pm Show Me the Money Derby
3pm Writer Beware Derby


12pm Writing Historical Fiction Workshop* Concierge
1pm Writing Short Stories Salon B

*Unfortunately, there was a scheduling conflict, so I will not be attending the Etiquette and Netiquette panel at 12pm. Also, I will have to leave the workshop early to make it to my 1pm panel. However, I have no doubt in my mind that Howie Weinstein, Steve Wilson, and (I believe) Robert Greenberger can handle the last half of the workshop without me.

Also, if I can get a good wireless signal, (Hey, you! Stop snickering!), I will do my shift as a DJ for gw-en.com at Shore Leave Saturday evening from 7-10pm and with any luck, I’m going to try and get a few of the authors or guests to swing by and say “Hi” and talk a bit about their latest work with my listening audience and me. If worse comes to worst, I’ll just have to zip home after my last panel on Saturday to pull my shift for the station. Ah, the sacrifices one makes for the adoring fans. (Look, you. I said, stop snickering.)