Weekly Update – September 19

First, thanks to the producers of the Connecticut Renaissance Faire for hosting me again as their guest author last weekend. It was another great time and I’m already looking forward to next year. In the meantime, go check out some of the other authors who will be there during the next three weekends of the run.

WRITING PROJECTS

Well Behaved Women: I’m at 64,000 words and I’m into the climax. Not sure if I’ll wrap up draft one this week but I’m going to make the effort.

Copyright 2017 Patricia Lupien

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: In case you missed it, here is the awesome new cover art for book three! If you like it, you can jump over to artist Tricia Lupien’s Redbubble store and get it on a variety of merchandise — and you’d be supporting an independent artist!

The Adventures of Strongarm & Lightfoot – book four: The first few chapters are written!

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War: Fourth draft finished, ready for editing.

Action Figures – Issue Eight: Crawling from the Wreckage: Third draft written.

Action Figures – Issue Nine: Rough plotting in progress.

Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins (audiobook): I’ve reviewed about three-quarters of the book and sent back my notes. I probably won’t get much done on this this week because of work but I hope to finish up the review process by the end of next week. In the meantime, check out the product art for the audiobook — which, you might notice, is an adapted version of the Secret Origins novel cover.

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

  • Friday, January 12 through Monday, January 15, 2018: Arisia at the Westin Boston Waterfront Hotel. I’ll be back selling books and, hopefully, speaking on several panels.

MISC

 

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Strongarm & Lightfoot – Cover Reveal

Copyright 2017 Patricia Lupien

What great timing! Tomorrow is my day as the invited guest author at the Connecticut Renaissance Faire, and I’ll be able to start talking up in earnest the next book in the Strongarm & Lightfoot series, because the cover art is finished!

Tricia Lupien, my ever-awesome cover artist, wrapped up her work yesterday, so now it’s just a matter of my editor Julie finishing up her side of things, and then it all comes back to me for final revisions and formatting. I’m hoping to have everything done so The Adventures of Strongarm & Lightfoot – Blades of Glory is ready to go by mid-October.

And here is the final back cover blurb letting you know what this story is all about…

Adventurers Wanted!

Good pay for simple recovery job, payment to be rendered upon successful completion of contract. Interested parties please report to the Woeste City Council. Be ready to provide credentials upon request. No Hruks need apply.

Desperate for a little excitement and a big payday, Derek Strongarm and Felix Lightfoot and their companions respond to a call to adventure from the city-state of Woeste, recently victimized by a band of raiders who stole an ancient iron mask of historical significance but no intrinsic value — or so the city council claims.

The council’s story doesn’t quite add up but it’s willing to pay good money for the mask’s return — and all the companions have to do is hike through a cursed forest, search a lost necropolis crawling with unspeakable horrors, and recover the mask from a gang of armed bandits.

Easy.

The greater challenge may lie in first convincing the council not to award the lucrative contract to a rival party, the legendary adventurers known as the Noble Blades — which is easier said than done when a sin from Felix’s past rears its head in an unexpected way.

But if Derek, Felix, and their friends wanted easy lives, they’d go herd sheep or something.

The Adventures of Strongarm & Lightfoot – Blades of Glory is the third book in the irreverent fantasy series by author Michael Bailey (Action Figures), a tale of bold heroes, dastardly villains, terrifying beasts, magical artifacts, dark pasts, mysterious circumstances, deceptive motives, atmospheric locales, and gratuitous violence.

Blades of Glory includes a bonus short story: Companionship, Compassion, Restraint, and Other Things Erika Racewind Dislikes – A Strongarm & Lightfoot Side Quest.

If you dig the artwork, head on over to Tricia’s Redbubble shop, because you can get it on a variety of apparel and accessories.

Weekly Update – September 5, 2017

It’s taken a while to get this done, but it’s going to be worth the wait: the audiobook version of Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins has finished recording! I’m spending the week reviewing the files and Tricia is prepping some new(ish) cover art, and hopefully I will have a release date for everyone very soon!

WRITING PROJECTS

Well Behaved Women: Not much to report here. It was a slow week due to my faire commitments, but I hope to get back into the project this week.

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: In the editing phase. The cover art is coming along nicely, as you can see from this work-in-progress shot.

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War: Fourth draft finished, ready for editing.

Action Figures – Issue Eight: Crawling from the Wreckage: Second draft finished, third draft in process.

Action Figures – Issue Nine: Rough plotting in progress.

Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins: Finished, in final approval process.

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

MISC

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Weekly Update – August 8, 2017

Starting off this week with a reminder about the Massachusetts Sci-Fi and Fantasy Authors group promotion going on through the end of the month. If you want to grab some free e-books (including a copy of Cheap Thrills Digest), go to the MASFFA website and sign up for the participating authors’ newsletters, and you’ll get free e-books as a thank-you!

Next, a big thank you to K.R. Conway for organizing and inviting me to participate in the Author Panel Night that capped off the Cape Cod Teen Writers Conference. More than 70 people, mostly (but not exclusively) teens, sat in on our rotating roster of discussion groups. Mine was “Heroes, Villains, and Lovable Losers,” and I had great co-panelists in Kim Savage, who is not what she seems (in-joke), and goth unicorn Hillary Monahan, who stepped into the role of moderator.

The Teen Author Night lineup.

WRITING PROJECTS

Well Behaved Women: I passed the 36,000 word threshold over the weekend and hashed out most of the rest of the plot (I am a pantser by nature so things like plot points tend to come to me in fits and spurts).

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: In the editing phase, and I’m seeing some rough cover art coming in. It’ll be a fun image, reminiscent perhaps of old Dragon magazine covers.

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War: With WBW stuff still percolating in my brain, I used last week to go through Black End War again, and I now have a draft that is ready for editing! Obviously my editor has her hands full for a while, but once Blades of Glory is done, I’m shipping this right over to her so it will be good and ready for a late winter/early spring 2018 release.

Action Figures – Issue Eight: Crawling from the Wreckage: Second draft finished.

Action Figures – Issue Nine: Rough plotting in progress.

Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins: Audiobook recording in progress.

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

MISC

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Weekly Update – February 21, 2017

af6-cover-ebook-editionFirst, I’d like to reiterate yesterday’s announcement that Action Figures – Issue Six: Power Play is officially available for pre-order on Amazon. The Kindle version will be released next Tuesday, February 28, and the print edition should also be available on or around that date.

If you’re new to the Action Figures saga, or an AF fan who wants to introduce someone to the series, mark Monday, March 13 on your calendar, because that’s when Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins will be available on the Kindle for free. Actually it’ll be free all week (until Friday, March 17), so that gives you five days to grab a copy for yourself or gift one to a fellow reader.

WRITING PROJECTS

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: I managed to sneak in a little work here and there but was mostly away from the laptop due to Boskone (more on that below).

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War: First draft finished.

Action Figures – Issue Eight: Crawling from the Wreckage: First draft finished.

Action Figures – Issue Nine: Rough plotting in progress.

Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins:  Audiobook recording in progress.

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

MISC.

Boskone is behind me, and while it was a decent weekend I’m doubtful whether I’ll try to go back in 2018.

The benefit of doing pop-culture-related conventions, especially cons like Arisia and Boskone, which tend to be more reader-oriented, is that you’re immersed in a target audience and the potential for sales and positive exposure is excellent. The drawback is that these shows can be very expensive. A table at Boskone is $70, plus they require people to basically buy an admission to the show (I personally despise that practice; I worked numerous comic cons with my wife and they didn’t hit vendors for a fee and then admission on top), and that almost doubles basic expenses. Then you add the unavoidable costs of parking, which can be considerable since they’re in Boston, and travel (gas and tolls). Even if you avoid superfluous expenses like food and lodging, you’re still dropping a couple hundred dollars just to be there.

In order to recoup those expenses, I have to sell at least 17 books at their convention price (I offer a small discount at shows to encourage sales), and that’s to barely break even. That might not sound like a huge number, but consider that there are several other authors there also selling their books, plus new and used book sellers, plus vendors selling non-book items. There’s a fair amount of competition for the patrons’ limited spending money.

The long and short of it is, Boskone did not provide a respectable ROI, and that is for me the deciding factor on whether to return to a given show. I’ve met several indie authors who do shows planning to lose money but do them anyway for the exposure, but I view this as a poor business model. Exposure is fine, but if it doesn’t lead to sales, it’s a waste of time, effort, and money — and the people I’ve spoken to admit they don’t know for sure that attending a con has directly resulted in later sales, and they certainly can’t connect any sales that do occur after a show to their appearance at said show. They might have correlation but they can’t prove causation.

 

Weekly Update – February 14, 2017

Welcome to the full o’ love edition of the weekly update — and what I love is that Boskone is this weekend! I’ll be down in the dealers’ room all three days, so come by to say hi, talk about writing, and buy signed copies of my books.

WRITING PROJECTS

Copyright 2018 Patricia Lupien
Copyright 2018 Patricia Lupien

Action Figures – Issue Six: Power Play and Action Figures – Live Free or Die: Edited, formatted, awaiting front cover art (in progress, at right).

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War: First draft finished.

Action Figures – Issue Eight: Crawling from the Wreckage: First draft finished.

Action Figures – Issue Nine: Rough plotting in progress.

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: Another solid weekend’s worth of work is in the bag. I’ve put down more than 19,000 words in about two weekends’ worth of work, so about a quarter of the way done already.

Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins:  Audiobook recording in progress.

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

MISC.

I’m saddened to announce that I won’t be at the spring New Bedford Book Festival in April. I had this on my calendar since the fall show was good to me and I’d heard the first spring show was really strong, but the organizers pushed this year’s spring show back from March and it now conflicts with my Robin Hood Springtime Festival rehearsal schedule. If you’re in the area you should go anyway to support local indie authors and maybe find a new favorite book.

I do have another possible event cooking for April, however. The details are still being hammered out, but when things are official, I’ll let everyone know the date, time, location, and possible big name fellow guest (tease tease).

Finally, I’m planning to do a giveaway of Secret Origins for the Kindle next month to support the release of Power Play. It’ll run on Amazon from Monday, March 13 to Friday, March 17. I’ll say a little more about this next week, but consider yourself fore-informed (forewarned doesn’t sound quite right).

Weekly Update – February 7, 2017

WRITING PROJECTS

Action Figures – Issue Six: Power Play and Action Figures – Live Free or Die: Edited, formatted, awaiting front cover art.

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War: First draft finished.

Action Figures – Issue Eight: Crawling from the Wreckage: First draft finished.

Action Figures – Issue Nine: Rough plotting in progress.

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: First draft is underway! I’m off to a good start thanks to a solid writing weekend, and I’m hoping work on this will clip along so I can have it ready for a fall release.

Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins:  Audiobook recording in progress.

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

flowers-and-rainbowsMISC.

To end on a cute and flattering note, apparently my cover artist Tricia’s daughter has decided she wants to follow in her mother’s footsteps and illustrate book covers, and she drew one that she’s declared is for my next book — which she has also declared will be called Flowers and Rainbows.

Lance Flowers is a male model by day, a vampire by night. Allison Rainbows is a down-and-out MMA fighter with a grudge. They’re detectives.

I could make that work 🙂