Weekly Update – April 25, 2017

The spring New Bedford Book Festival is done and gone, and thank you to the readers who came out and to my wife for covering my table while I was at Robin Hood’s Faire rehearsals. PS: come to Robin Hood’s Faire.

WRITING PROJECTS

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: I managed to finally get through an action scene that was giving me some problems. The first draft is now up to 44,000 words.

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

Action Figures – Issue Eight: Crawling from the Wreckage: I sneaked in some work on this last week, enough to wrap up the second draft. I’m waiting a while before sending it out to my test readers, who haven’t even finished work on book seven.

Action Figures – Issue Nine: Rough plotting in progress.

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

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

MISC.

My cover artist Tricia Lupien has launched an official Patreon account. Go check it out and support her!

Weekly Update – April 18, 2017

It’s almost New Bedford Bookfest time! More on that below.

WRITING PROJECTS

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: Got some work in, but it’s still slow going setting up for the next big action sequence.

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

Action Figures – Issue Eight: Crawling from the Wreckage: I got a little work in on the second draft to keep me going while I puzzled out some stuff on S&L book three.

Action Figures – Issue Nine: Rough plotting in progress.

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

APPEARANCES and EVENTS

MISC.

Thanks to my sweetie for her little nod to my work with the upcoming as fight director for Robin Hood’s Faire.

Weekly Update – April 11, 2017

WRITING PROJECTS

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: Got a little work in, but I’m heading into a fairly large action sequence and those often take time to percolate in my head before I start writing them down. What did I do to clear my head and stay productive? Well…

Action Figures – Issue Seven: The Black End War: I finished the second draft of this! It’s going out to my test-readers for their thoughtful analysis and merciless criticism, though I don’t expect to work on this again for a while. Have to finish S&L book three, after all.

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.

 

Weekly Update – March 28, 2017

Another slowish week, but there’s something important down in the miscellaneous section you should definitely read.

WRITING PROJECTS

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: Made some decent progress over what may well be the last full writing weekend for the next several weeks. I passed the 40,000 work mark so I am very close to the approximate halfway point in the story.

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.

Over the weekend, a friend passed away after her second fight with cancer.

Her real name was Alexandra Hastings, but a lot of people knew her as “Calypso Bordeaux,” co-founder and leader of the all-woman stage combat performance troupe the Vixens En Garde. She was a talented, delightful woman who surrounded herself with equally talented, delightful women in the Vixens. I have yet to meet a member of the group who isn’t awesome.

A crowdfunding page was set up for her, originally with the intent of helping defray her medical care, but now it’s to help her husband and young son endure what is unquestionably the hardest time of their lives. Even if you never met her or saw her perform, consider making a donation to the family.

Weekly Update – March 21, 2017

Slow week this week. Here’s what’s going on.

WRITING PROJECTS

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: Didn’t get much done this weekend due to other commitments, such as celebrating my wife’s birthday, and being exhausted from late nights and/or insomnia. Woo. The first draft stands at 37,000 words so it’s creeping up on the halfway point.

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.

At this point I think it’s safe to make this announcement: after several years as an assistant fight director for the Connecticut Renaissance Faire, I’ll be assuming full fight director responsibilities for the upcoming Robin Hood Springtime Festival.

This will be a fun challenge for me. I’ve choreographed and directed fights before, but always in a support position for the FD. This time around I’m all on my own, which is equal parts thrilling and intimidating. Good fightwork tells a story of its own and isn’t just a series of cool moves, incorporates characterization, and above all, keeps the actors safe — one thing I don’t have to worry about when I write fights for my novels.

 

Weekly Update – March 14, 2017

Secret Origins coverFirst, your brief reminder that the Kindle edition of Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins  is available for free this week. If you haven’t given it a try yet, now’s the time to check it out.

WRITING PROJECTS

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: I passed the 34,000 word mark over the weekend and I’m now into the second act.

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.

I want to send out a thank-you to Patrick Hodges of Young Adult Authors Rendezvous for including me via remote in the Tucson Festival of Books in Arizona over the weekend. Patrick asked if I’d send a couple copies of Secret Origins out to sell at the YAAR booth, so I did, and if you look closely at the photo on the right, you can see it sitting amidst the many other excellent titles that were available on that nice, bright, warm, sunny, snow-free weekend (he said without any bitterness as he watches the blizzard happening outside).

I end this week with a quick word of advice to indie writers as they set out to promote their work: be honest with yourself and, by extension, your readers.

I’ve seen a recent rash in indie authors presenting their achievements rather disingenuously lately, claiming “number one best-seller” status for topping an Amazon chart during a free giveaway campaign, employing such vague accolades as “acclaimed author,” or overstating their bibliography, as if their sheer quantity of their writing is somehow testament to the quality of their writing.

Granted, a lot of readers aren’t going to look too deeply into self-aggrandizing claims and take them at face value, but if you can’t back up the hype with a quality product, it’s going to backfire on you, so don’t spend so much energy on Barnum-esque self-promotion. Put that effort into writing the best story you can and let your work speak for itself.

 

Weekly Update – March 7, 2017

Secret Origins coverI open this week with a reminder that the Kindle edition of Action Figures – Issue One: Secret Origins will be available for free next week beginning Monday, but more importantly, I’m asking fans of the series to grab a copy for a friend or family member and send it to them as a gift. And remember, if they don’t own a Kindle, they can download a free app that allows them to read the e-book on any device.

 

WRITING PROJECTS

The Adventures of Strongarm & LightfootBlades of Glory: I hit the 32,000 work mark over the weekend, so I’m creeping up on the halfway point in the story. While I’m happy with the way the story’s developed so far, I know I’m going to need to massage it a bit in the second draft to really punch up its personality. The series stands out because of its irreverent tone and that’s a bit lacking in draft one.

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.

I’m going to make the most of my March writing-wise, because next month my weekends go bye-bye because of the Connecticut Renaissance Faire’s Robin Hood Springtime Festival. Rehearsals begin in April and the show runs into May, so don’t be surprised if I don’t have much to say for several weeks.

That said, I’m always happy to hear from readers with questions about any of my books or about writing in general, so feel free to post a comment here on the blog.

Finally, I am working on a fun little side-project with my cover artist, Tricia, that will be of interest to Action Figures fans. More on that as it develops!