Taking the Plunge to Self-Publish

It has been a long road since I started writing my novel Blood Feud. The journey began in April of 2012. I remember it well — a month of straight writing where the ideas just flowed like water. They pooled onto the page with little effort as months of thinking about my story and characters finally found a permanent place on the page. My story flourished but my poor family suffered from neglect. So at the end of the month and about 50,000 words later, I took a break. A few weeks later I came back to my marvelous work of art to realize everything I had written was total crap. And that pretty much sums up the next four years. Awesome spurts of writing where words flowed and family suffered just to end up with… yep you guessed it, more crap.

That my friends is the way of the writer as I am sure some of you are quite familiar with.

But something happened in my fifth year of writing. During my sixtieth (and really that’s not much of an exaggeration) rewrite of Blood Feud, the crap fell away and a good story finally started to form. At least to the point where I felt confident enough to send my work to a professional author, editor, and friend (Michael Knost) so he could tell me it was crap too. And to my surprise, he said it was a pretty awesome story.

Crap, what do I do now?

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Hello There, Stranger!

Wow! I just checked the date on my last post. March 30th. I knew it had been awhile, but I didn’t know it’d been that long. So sorry to you and myself. I really had not intended to stay away from my blog that long. What can I say? Life got in the way.

Two major things really.

One, in the last few months, I have been going through some incredible changes in my personal life (and in extension in my overall health as well). Some of it’s been easy (no not really), some of it’s been hard like really freaking awful hard, but all of it has been very much needed and long over due. In doing all that soul searching and reflection, it’s left little time to do well… a lot (and not just blogging either).

In all my reflection, it’s also put things in perspective for me and made me see what was really important. And while I do like to work on my blog, in the grand scheme of things, blogging is down near the bottom of stuff I really should be doing (so sorry, the truth hurts I know).

That being said, I do want to start working on my blog more regularly. And since I will be taking a break from major writing over the summer, I just might have the time to get back into the swing of things.

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Getting Back into the Groove

After a very intense year of writing the first and second draft of my novel Blood Feud, and about six other short stories, I decided it was time to take a break from my intense everyday writing schedule. I did this to prevent a super crash burnout and to spend more time with my son before he started kindergarten. Well, he started kindergarten last week. I cried. I felt lost and broken because my one and only child began the daily journey of public education. Now it’s time for me to move on, and seize the opportunity of more time, putting it to good use.

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My 2013 Writing Goals

Oh man, I have to come up with more goals? Don’t I already do that almost everyday of the week? And didn’t I just kick butt with my 2012 goals? Okay, so maybe coming up with some new things to strive for may not be a bad idea. Here are some things I would like to accomplish in 2013.

Read
This is a goal I still need to keep on doing. I did better in 2012, but I can do even better. My goal to read at least a chapter or short story every single day.

Write
This I have been doing pretty good in, but I’m putting it down as a goal to remind myself not to become a slacker. I must write everyday!!!! 

Beef up my Self-Editing 
This is something I have been wanting to do for awhile. I have a great ability of finding plot holes, character flaws, and inconsistencies in stories, but when it comes to grammar, spelling, and punctuation I don’t shine as bright. My goal for 2013 is to read a few books, and take a few classes so I can become a super editing machine!

Finish Blood Feud
Do I have to say it? Really? My goal is to have Blood Feud completely finished by the dawning of 2014. I’m nearly done with my first draft, so it has a possibility of happening. I’m going to keep fighting the good fight and see how far I get!

Work on Short Stories
Because I have thrown so much time into Blood Feud, my short story writing has fallen mostly by the wayside. I’d like to try to at least finish several short stories I have on the back burner, and maybe even come up with a few new ones. I can do it! I know I can!

Do More Posts for My Blog
I really do need to be more proactive at posting for my blog. I actually do have a list of ideas to write about, but I haven’t taken the time to write them out. My goal is to try and post something every two weeks at minimum.

Break into Travel Writing
This is something that has interest me for awhile now. I’m not sure what it will take, but I would at least like to try my hand at travel writing and see where it leads. I know I love to travel, and I have several awesome vacations in the works this year. Well, see how it goes.

Wow! I’m already excited to get things going and I can’t wait to see what happens next! So what are your goals for 2013?

The Next Big Thing

A friend of mine Lesley Conner tagged me in a blog of hers and I have been tasked to answering questions about my lasted work in progress, so I chose to talk about my novel Blood Feud.

What is the working title of your book?

The title of my current novel that I am writing on is call Blood Feud. It is the first of six books in a series called Emperors of Ethia. And yes, I already have titles and basic plots all lined up for the other five books.

Where did the idea come from for the book?

The idea was actually formulated from a hodge podge of ideas, but I think the original idea came from one of my favorite television shows Prison Break. I fell in love with the character Michael Scofield and that love transcended into a main character for my series. I also have a huge love of the old Sherlock Holmes stories and that inspired my second character who is closely linked to the main character throughout the series.

What genre does your book fall under?

Blood Feud is definitely a science fiction book that is jammed packed with adventure and political intrigue.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

Ooh, good question. Well, since my main character is based off a character Miller Wentworth played, it would only be fair to give him first rights to place Adar Zahn. 🙂

As for Markus Nador… a bad boy type would work just fine.

King Rainus Nador… Sean Connery for sure! An older version Sean Connery not James Bond Connery.

Emperor Gharr Zahn… Ian McShane.. yeah he could do Gharr very well!

Zorren Zahn… maybe Gary Oldman, but a younger, darker version.

Tessa Zahn…Liv Talor, but younger like in Armageddon

Jarl Dexter… I’m not sure. I’m thinking someone unknown. Older, dark, and has that career solider look.


What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Just one sentence. Okay, let’s see what I can do…

It’s a story about the most disfunctional family you’ll ever run across as a father demands each of his eight sons to kill each other for his throne, and the youngest son struggles to come to terms with a rite he doesn’t agree with as he’s forced to participate whether he likes it or not.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I’m looking for an agency, but am not apposed to the idea of self-publication if I cannot find the right home. I realize that I am pushing the boundaries with some of where I take my book and that there may not a so called home for my novel. In the end this book is more for myself than anyone. It’s a story I have always wanted to read, but have yet to see.


How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

I actually wrote the rough draft of Shadow Games (book 2), before I started on Blood Feud, but afterward realized I needed to start earlier in the story. I started Blood Feud in June of this year. I have 32 chapter written and have about 10 more chapters to write before I will be finished with the first draft. I hope to have a completed draft by the end of the year.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

I think my story is really a combination of a lot of books, but if I had to narrow it down I would say it’s a Hunger Games meets Game of Thrones meets Star Wars kind of thing.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?

I think this story was born out my own dysfunctional family. Let’s face it, I had a really rocky childhood and my relationship with my family has been precarious at best. So I would say all the members of my family inspired me to write this over a lifetime of frustration and trying to figure out where we fit in each other’s lives.

Also, my great love of science fiction determined the scene for the series. I always wanted to write a story set in a universe full of aliens, spaceships, and strange new worlds.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

This book is set in a galaxy light-years away from Earth. It’s a story that traverses the stars and planets of an Empire that’s held strong for millennia, but that strength is tested from the turmoil of the politics inside and from the outside, as a strange alien race attacks Ethia’s borders in random raids.