2012-01-27

Better late than never

The revision of Translight! was completed last week and Chroniech! is over half way done. I had to make some pretty significant changes to Translight! in light of my new knowledge of grammar and the feedback from those readers who made constructive comments concerning my writing. Chroniech is in much better shape although some small changes have been made. I plan on finishing all three and releasing them all at once as a new edition.

In the meantime - I'm still working out the storyline for When Ships Mutiny (WSM) when I find myself with nothing else to do other than sit and think. I found it interesting to discover that the original title of Chroniech was "The Weapon". The original story I had in my head was nothing like what has been published. I like the title though and I've been toying with the beginnings of an idea for a book with that title. Once I finish revising the Galactic Alliance series I will finish WSM and then perhaps work on The Weapon. Dragonverse 3 is still a possibility but that series is not selling nearly as well as the other books I've written so it will receive low priority.

I hope to have the GA series revised in another couple weeks. Stay tuned.

I thought I would also mention that my televisions are now all powered by Media Center. When the cable company nearly doubled the price of renting their DVR boxes I felt I had to find another solution. Luckily, I found a quad tuner on sale and picked up two XBox 360's (basic 4-Gig boxes) on a black Friday sale. The Media Center solution took some getting used to but so far it's been working quite well. We dropped off the cable boxes last week. Our bill should drop by $40.00. There are a lot of advantages to this new system which I won't go into right now. If you are considering going this route and you have a powerful computer to act as a server you should give it a try.

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2012-01-09

Putting WSM on hold

I've been reading some of the reviews of my Galactic Alliance series from the U.K. and I've become concerned with a number of comments concerning the grammer in the books. People seem to love the books but they have concerns over the grammer. Cheryl did not proof these books and I admit that they were probably not gone over with a fine-tooth comb looking for grammatical mistakes. To protect my integrity as an author I've decided to put When Ships Mutiny on hold for a few weeks so I can go back and revise the entire Galactic Alliance series. I will re-release all the books with improved grammer.

My thanks to you if you commented on my writing. I do take all comments to heart and use any constructive feedback to help make my books better.

View or purchase my books at Smashwords. Visit my web page.

2012-01-07

The mind is a mysterious thing

The other day, after sleeping on how I what I was going to write next, I sat down at the computer and started to write. After the first couple of sentences it was if I suddenly decided to discard all of my previous plans so I could go in a different direction. It turned out better than anticipated and now it is part of the book. There are times when I sit down to write and what leaps forth on the screen is nothing like I had planned. I've gotten used to it since it seems to happen a lot.

When Ships Mutiny is coming along nicely with about 30 pages complete already. I've just set up for the first major battle of the book and the main character is about to stumble upon a secret that has been hidden from the ships for some time. If my brain keeps pulling tricks on me like it did the other day I may not know how the book ends until I actually sit down to write the final chapter!

Cheryl has been looking into ways to boost sales. If we could figure out why sales in the UK have been going so strong (>50 books a day this month) I would gladly duplicate it for the US market. We are looking into a small marketing campaign on the web and perhaps a press release for my newest book "Off Course" which will also mention the other books.

It's coming up on tax time and I've been considering how I'm going to handle the extra income from the book sales. It's nice to have the extra coming in but there's a serious tax consideration. When you're an author selling books and they do well you must consider your authoring life as a separate business. The IRS sees it as a sole proprietership. You must keep accurate records of all transactions since you can claim some expenses as tax deductions. I go to a writer's group meeting every month and the mileage to and from the meeting is tax deductible. If anyone reading this needs some advice I can help - but I'm not a tax professional.

Well, it's time to go write some more. I would like to crank out this next book pretty quick so I'm trying to write a little bit every day.

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2012-01-01

A new year and another book

Christmas is behind us and 2012 now looms ahead. Time to begin working in earnest on my next book. I had actually started "When Ships Mutiny" a few years back and then shelved it to work on Dragonverse. I've written other books in between but I felt it was time to dig WSM out and finish it. As I began my review I noted that the book was very disconnected. It started off with a long narrative of human space history then a couple chapters of space battles leading up to the present. But the book read like an encyclopedia and had no discourse what-so-ever.

My first revision put the book deliberately into the form of an encyclopedia but that didn't work. Last week, I highlighted two entire chapters and hit the delete button. My first chapter still starts out in the past but it reads like a short story and serves to introduce the rest of the book. Much better. I'm learning that to write good science fiction, the reader does not have to be told about all the intricate details of how things work. I will simply gloss over the technological aspects of the devices and equipment in use and leave the reader to wonder how such things work. Stardrive? Yep - I've got one and I'm not going to explain how it works. Hypercom communications? Got that too. It's all about the story - not about how things work in the story. I did this in Off Course and that turned out pretty good. When Ships Mutiny is going back to my space war style and I'm going to be writing it as a story - not as an encyclopedia of advanced technological wonders.

I hope everyone reading this blog has a wonder 2012. Mine ended quite well. I've sold a total of 1186 books from Amazon - mostly in the UK. I've received a few emails from fans and that is encouraging. I love to write and the positive feedback is what fuels that desire.

View or purchase my books at Smashwords. Visit my web page.