Shameless Plug Time

I’ll keep this quick, I promise.

A couple of months ago, I was contacted by Hilary Umbreit of the Sharon Public Library if I’d like to be their featured author of the month for October. I of course said yes, and that interview is now live. You can read it, and past interviews, right here.

Thanks, Hilary!

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Shop Talk

I head into my four-day writing weekend a little fuzzy-brained due to a late night last night — but it was all for the good cause that was the Sharon Public Library’s Local Author Roundtable Project. Our contestants for the evening were myself (obviously), Rich FeitelbergPete KahleDaniel G. KeohaneD.A. MacQuinJason Parent, and Rob Watts.

Not pictured are Kenneth Heard and Jennifer Allis Provost, who were, respectively, sick and had a child-related crisis, which is too bad because, despite what I’ll call a thin turnout, it was a fun evening. We talked a lot about writing as a craft and quite a bit about putting ourselves out there to spread the word about our work — something I am still learning to do and am still rather uncomfortable doing.

One chap in the audience asked a few questions near the end that made me suspect he was about to attempt to write his first book. There was an undercurrent of self-doubt in his line of questioning — the kind that hinted (to me at least) he was in his “fumbling through” phase and, because he lacked experience, questioning whether he was anywhere close to the right path. He didn’t realize that feeling like a clumsy, uninformed hack-in-the-making was part and parcel to becoming a competent, confident writer. Hopefully he left the event feeling encouraged and empowered.

So that brings me to this, a statement I’d like to make to anyone who has toyed with the idea of writing a book, or attempted it but never finished it, or has a finished product sitting on his/her laptop but hasn’t taken that leap of faith and put it out there for everyone to see. For that matter, this also applies to anyone who wants to launch some sort of creative endeavor but has second-guessed him- or herself into inaction:

Get off your goddamned ass and DO IT.

Stop dreaming about it. Stop talking about it. Stop making up “reasons” why you “can’t do it” and pull the fucking trigger.

Why People Give Up

Believe me, I understand it’s scary. I was there once and I was terrified to actually release my first novel to the public, who had absolutely no reason to buy it or tell me it was any good — but they did. And now it’s my living.

I won’t lie; you might take that step and discover that you are in fact not the talent you believed yourself to be. That’s okay. I was there once, too. If that’s what happens, you know what you do? You take some time to feel like absolute crap, get it out of your system, then pick yourself up and go find a new dream. Either way, you’re better off for making the attempt than you are for denying yourself the chance to fly or die.

Thus endeth the sermon. Now go make some art.

A Few More From CTRF

A few more photos from my book signing at the Connecticut Renaissance Faire have popped up, courtesy of my friend (and faire co-owner) Eric. You can see the full photo album here if you’re curious (and you should be).

My favorite of the bunch: my friend Alyson as Belle. Yes, AF #1 is Belle-approved! Photo by Eric Tetreault.
My favorite of the bunch: my friend Alyson as Belle. Yes, AF #1 is Belle-approved! Photo by Eric Tetreault.
My friend Geneva, who helped me break in my new Square reader. Photo by Eric Tetreault.
My friend Geneva, who helped me break in my new Square reader. Photo by Eric Tetreault.
My friend Mary Kathryn, who got her copy of book one signed. Photo by Eric Tetreault.
My friend Mary Kathryn, who got her copy of book one signed. Photo by Eric Tetreault.
Me, presenting a table full of books that were not in-frame when this photo was taken. D'oh. Photo by Eric Tetreault.
Me, presenting a table full of books that were not in-frame when this photo was taken. D’oh. Photo by Eric Tetreault.

If this all looks like a lot of fun, you should head down to CTRF this weekend — specifically on Monday, when my friend J.M. Aucoin will be there selling and signing copies of his books. He looks like this (the one on the right, not the left):

Justin and Rex

For those who can’t get enough of me, remember I’ll be at the Sharon Public Library this evening for the Local Authors Roundtable Project!

One Down, One To Go

Me and my friend Rachel, in the role of enthusiastic fan. Photo by Lauren Dubois.
Me and my friend Rachel, in the role of enthusiastic fan. Photo by Lauren Dubois.

I had my book signing at the Connecticut Renaissance Faire on Sunday, and boy did I luck out. Saturday’s weather was less than ideal, to put it mildly, and that kept the crowds down, but Sunday was much nicer and so the turnout was much better.

I had no idea what to expect for a response, but I’m happy with how things went. I sold a bunch of books and maybe made some new fans, which was the whole point.

I have plenty of stock left, and with luck I’ll be sending that home with new owners on Thursday after the Local Authors Roundtable Project event at the Sharon Public Library.

If not? Well, it’s looking like my wife and I will be returning to the OtherWhere Market in Lowell later this year, and I have a line on a potential con venue in January. We’ll see how that goes.

Connecticut Bound!

Taking a quick break from my writing day to remind everyone that I will be at the Connecticut Renaissance Faire tomorrow for my book signing.

CTRF Map

See the “Princess Teatime” tent in the upper left corner? The author’s area will be right up there. Come by between 1 and 3 PM to say hello and grab a copy of any of my books.

And for those of you in the eastern Massachusetts area, remember that I’ll be at the Sharon Public Library Thursday for Local Authors Roundtable Project beginning at 7:30 PM.

LARP

Book Signings, Ho!

Busy week coming up!

First, on Sunday, October 4 I’ll be appearing at the Connecticut Renaissance Faire from 1 to 3 PM. Copies of all four Action Figures novels and The Adventures of Strongarm & Lightfoot – Scratching a Lich will be available for sale, and at bargain prices. Buy one book for $12, and pay $10 for every additional book — and I’ll gladly sign them for you!

Jpeg

Whatever’s left will be going with me to the Sharon Public Library on Thursday, October 8 for a Local Authors Roundtable Project discussion on genre fiction. The event runs from 7:30 to 9:30 PM and the participating authors will have copies of their books available for sale.

And after that? Well, I’ll be getting back to work on Action Figures – Issue Six: Power Play, the first draft of which is more than halfway done!

I’ll end with a quick update on Action Figures – Issue Five: Team-Ups, which you may have noticed is experiencing a bit of a delay. I’d hoped to have it ready for release in September but work on Strongarm & Lightfoot took longer than anticipated, so now it is set for a November release — just in time for the holidays.

A Short Series Of Brief Announcements

First and perhaps most importantly, draft two of Action Figures – Issue Five: Team-Ups is done and out to my test-readers! Hopefully I’ll hear back from all of them within the next couple of weeks so I can make my next round of revisions and ship it off to my editor Julie for her scrutiny.

Julie is earning her money from me big-time, since she’s also in the middle of editing The Adventures of Strongarm & Lightfoot to get that ready for its late September/early October release.

My big pile of books for two October events.  Hope they all find new homes!
My big pile of books for two October events. Hope they all find new homes!

Both books should be available for my two October appearances now on my calendar. In addition to my book-signing Sunday, October 4 at the Connecticut Renaissance Faire, I’ve added an authors roundtable event at the Sharon Public Library in Sharon, MA. On Thursday, October 8 at 7:30 PM (date and time tentative) I’ll join fellow genre fiction authors to discuss fantasy/sci-fi/horror fiction and sign copies of my books.

And by that time, I should be well into the first draft of my next book: Action Figures – Issue Six: Power Play!