Posts Tagged ‘muse’

Yesterday evening I attended the on-line meeting for the author’s of  Xychler’s upcoming paranormal anthology. As this was my second such meeting, and third meeting covering how the editing system and such are laid out (which is actually quite smart and helpful) I admit I was a bit… silly.

I couldn’t help myself, my fingers were typing away, being naughty, before I even knew I should be reigning them in. Luckily, the people at Xchyler are good natured, fun, and allow for the fact that authors are crazy. As long as you do the work, on time, then you can pass notes in class.

I was looking forward to being in this anthology right from the moment I submitted my story. Being a part of the last anthology was not only fun, but it was …impressive. From the team helping to better my writing, to the final result of a collections of great stories – it was a good time.

I know this one will be just as fun and just as impressive a collection. Last night, we all got to give a short intro to what our stories were about – and I’m now really looking forward to the stage where we get to proof each other’s work , so I can read them.

My personal contribution – ‘Charon’s Obol’ – is a White Dragon Black story, which, chronologically, falls shortly after ‘Tomorrow Wendell’.  I hope people like it, as much as they liked ‘The Cost of Custody‘  - the short story from last years Anthology ‘Shades and Shadows’.

It is, I admit, comforting to be back in the process. To once more be inside the machine, working to produce a quality piece. It is a feeling akin to the being home after a good but long vacation.

So yesterday, my contract from Xchyler Publishing came – looking pretty official that there is going to be a new White Dragon Black story in the world. The public world, that is, there are more than a handful of short stories featuring Jonathan Alvey sitting on my hard drive. ‘Charon’s Obol’ will be the next published one story , coming in this fall’s paranormal anthology.

Once I get home and sign it, it will be all official. And yes, just because I’ve got a novel out with them doesn’t mean I don’t have to sign another contract. This isn’t the Bog Box Boys club.  I’m not signed on as  their slave for 4 years,  three novels, and two spots on morning radio. It is a contract per work sort of situation which is siting me just fine.

So before long i’m going to be knee deep in edits again … you’d think I’d learn.  But if nothing else can be said to be true about writers, this can – we are all masochists.

When I sent out the Arc’s (Advanced Reading Copy) of my novel, I made sure to emphasizes that I wanted honest reviews. It is expected that people give honest reviews but sometimes there is a feeling that you shouldn’t say anything bad. I drove home again and again that I wanted honesty.

I got it.

I couldn’t be more pleased. The reviews I’m getting are positive:

Fascinating, edge of your chair action, and a main character both…

Fun and Thought Provoking Read

One heck of a start to a series! Please, sir, may I have some more?

But with-in the reviews, even the ones that give four stars and recommend it to others, some have said there are little things that they didn’t like. They all say it wasn’t enough to deter them from reading, and it wasn’t enough to make them dislike the story, but it was there.

This, to me, is fantastic. I may be a bit weird in that but there it is.

Soon I’m going to contact these people (I can do that because they are associates of mine) and get a bit of discussion going because I want to know – I want to hear and understand – what they didn’t like and why. I’m not going to do this because I think they are wrong and want to argue my case, I’m going to do this because I think that every opinion of a book is right to that reader. I want to hear their thoughts for the same reason I have a personal editor, and beta-readers, because it’s a reflection on my writing. Their thoughts may be able to help me make the series better.

I’m not saying that I’m going to change what comes in the future based on every single individuals personal quirks. I am saying that input is important. If I have lots of feedback I can gauge what does and doesn’t work and from there make informed decisions. I’ll write what my Muse tells me to write – just like I always do- but maybe with a keener eye.

If any of you go and get my novel and read it – I ask you to leave you comments and thoughts with me. I would love if you wrote reviews for Amazon, Goodreads, Barnes & Nobles…. but there are many places you can find me one line and drop a note. Many places you can share your thoughts on my novel with me, knowing that your honest comments will be respected and considered because, as a writer – like in life, you never stop learning.

It has begun – reviews are coming in from ARC readers. This is getting real. Two wonderful reviews on Goodreads that are making my head spin.

It seems people just might actually like my writing, my words, and more importantly–my world.

It is that last one that is most important to me, because if people don’t like the world I’ve built than they won’t want to delve into it again and again. I write because I am a writer, but the White Dragon Black world is such a part of me now that doing it just for myself seems well, almost unfair.

Jonathan Alvey’s world has become so real to me, that I don’t want to live there alone.

… Wow –didn’t that sound like I was losing my mind in a whole knew way?

The point is, that I want to share these stories with others because I believe the vignettes my Muse gives me were meant for more than just my mind to explore. Hopefully, I’m right– the reviews will have to tell me if I am.

We have reached the point in the publishing process where there is nothing more for me to do.

I’ve done the edits, helped get the Arc readers their copies, gathered bloggers and reviewers, helped with the blog promotion package, shared my idea’s about publicity styles, and complied the prizes for my release party.

So … now what?

I have entered a true void. A vacuum of action. A dead calm on the sea of publishing.

It is a week before we go  live with any promotions. And the Arc readers haven’t had their copies long enough to be hearing back from them. I have nothing to do for the first time in months.

And I’m feeling a bit lost.

I have started back on my morning routine of writing, so that is helping. Being able to dive in and do a few laps in Jonathan’s world is nice and gives me a nice distraction. I haven’t got into the habit of my afternoon edits again yet, however. Although I did do some last night when my body and mind seemed to have conspired against sleep.

As it is the summer season now, there are plenty of things that need doing and , if I can drag myself away from the computer, that will help pass the time and further distract me from this doldrum in the publishing process. But habits formed over the long, long winter are hard to break, so I’m sitting here more than I really should be.

I have a feeling, I’ll just get into the swing of not doing anything with ‘Tomorrow Wendell’ when I suddenly will need to be back at it for post release promotion.

Maybe I should enjoy this lull – maybe I’ll figure out how to reset my routine… probably just in time to realize summer is over and I missed it.