Read an E-Book Week

girlreadingRead an E-Book Week is a site-wide promotion at Smashwords to help authors connect with readers. According to the press package, the catalog includes nearly 40,000 books available for free or discount. That’s a lot of reading materials and it includes books by Eric and me.

Everyday Deals

The first two books of the Apothic Man series, Model Species and Divine Fire, are both available for FREE from Smashwords and Barnes & Noble every day! For Smashwords, just head to the site and download the format that works best for you! If you own a Nook, we’ve got you covered at B&N.

About Model Species:

Alcander, an old man with a decrepit body and shattered sense of self, has a murderous plan to seize power and replace the life he cannot remember. Investigating a body with bizarre wounds fished from the bay are a middling apothynom, Inspector Paulos Gaent, and a religious objector to apothynom rule, Clerk Teria Bellaphaerenous. At cross-purposes, a private detective, Laros Nero, is hired by an anonymous client to discover the identity of the murderer for reasons other than justice. However, it will take more than keen investigative abilities to stop Alcander. It will require the unearthing of dark apothic knowledge that has been buried for an age.

Download Model Species

About Divine Fire:

In the Radiant Agnosian Empire, emetanisms and apothic methods from outside are restricted. The culcursus of an apothynom and the implants of the Oinos are illegal. Apothos is a sacred act that comes from Agnos, their god, the sun.

In Florey, the banking capitol of the Radiant Agnosian Empire, there is unrest. Agnos is smiting the wicked with Divine Fire. Neltiar Silva, an apothynom from the Polities, and Marie Lemieux, a woman possessing a verboten Oinos implant, want to know why and how. As they dig deeper, they find out the real reason men are dying.

Download Divine Fire

More about Weordan, the setting for the Apothic Man series.

Read an E-Book Week Specials at Smashwords

Shhh… Don’t tell Eric, but I put Model Species: The Apothic Edition on sale for 25% off. Just use the coupon code (REW25) when checking out.  The Apothic Edition includes the novel, Model Species, and extra goodies including the short story “A Game of Moths by Gieter RR Morgan.”

Purchase Model Species: The Apothic Edition

The first novel I ever wrote, Lucinda at the Window, is FREE! Just use coupon RW100 at checkout.

About Lucinda at the Window:

Lucinda Harris is very put out.

One of her oldest friends, Rebecca O’Malley, has married an impetuous Irishman. The fortnight-long party at the O’Malley’s newly-inherited rural Ohio Manor is filled with some of the most common people. The Manor itself is in poor condition and staffed by three mostly incompetent servants. Worst of all, Lucinda has been murdered.

Lucinda is determined to solve the mystery of her own death, but unfortunately for the guests of the Manor, the only thing more haunted than the house is Lucinda Harris.

“Purchase” Lucinda at the Window

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Adventures of the Writerly Writer ~ 2013 in Review

So, what did the Writerly Writer do in 2013? I’m almost afraid to look.

Model Species and The Apothic Man series

Obviously, the big deal in the last couple months has been Eric and my decision to self publish some of our previous works.

modelSpeciesCoverLarge6The kernel idea for Model Species and Weordan, the setting of the Apothic Man series, began in 2004 after World Fantasy Con. I wrote Weordan stories that year for NaNoWriMo, but those bear little resemblance to what that world would become. Eric wanted to play with the idea of a “magic” system based on actual science. How could characters harness personal power, personal technology? What kind of biology would be needed? What kind of environment would evolve that kind of biology? Then we tell stories in this world. Model Species is a murder mystery with a dash of Frankenstein thrown in.

There are other books set in Weordan, what we’ve decided to call the Apothic Man series. Divine Fire is story of political intrigue set in a theocracy far away from the events of Model Species. These two very different stories are the basis for the next iteration of Weordan novels that will weave the two narratives together. How far we get into Weordan will be partially decided by how well Model Species and Divine Fire do.

Model Species was released for free on Nov. 30th . According to Smashwords we’ve had 335 downloads and not a day has passed without a download. We plan on releasing a premium version with extra content in a few weeks (that will be priced reasonably), and Divine Fire is slated for February, probably.

As I said, Model Species is out there in the world for free. If anyone’s looking for a sci-fi fantasy mystery read, check it out. I’d also love to see some reviews! (Well, okay, the thought of reviews makes my hyperventilate, but that’s normal, right?)

Model Species at Smashwords | Weordan | LIKE on Facebook

Lucinda at the WindowLucinda at the Window

I also rereleased my first novel, Lucinda at the Window. It saw print publication a few years back by a small publisher. Lucinda is my love letter to gothic fiction and manor-bound ghost stories. It’s available for cheap and, if anyone is interested in reviewing (*wheeze, wheeze*), I’d be happy to provide a copy.

Lucinda at the Window at Smashwords | at Amazon

Luck for Hire

I started sending out queries a year ago. I’ve sent out quite a few. Thus far, not a nibble. I’ll be honest, that’s disappointing. Luck for Hire is the closest thing to a mainstream novel that Eric and I have written. And no dice. I have a few potentials, but it’s getting thin.

There are still many more days of failure ahead, whole seasons of failure, things will go terribly wrong, you will have huge disappointments, but you have to prepare for that, you have to expect it and be resolute and follow your own path.
~Anton Chekhov

Abbott Project

Abbott, David P. "Spiritualistic Materialization and Other Mediumistic Phenomena." The Open Court. May 1919, 33/5. 263Doing research for the Abbott project has been a lot of fun, even if the writing of it hasn’t gelled yet. After writing 44K during NaNoWriMo 2012, I started a new draft in January and then another new draft in June-July-ish. I still haven’t quite found the story I want to tell, but my details are getting better with research. The biggest change has been adding Joseffy to the narrative. He’s a intriguing personage. I’d almost like to write a non-fiction book on him alone. The plan for 2014 is to keep doing research (I need to learn more about Omaha in the early 20th century) and to keep picking at the Abbott Project plot while working on more Apothic Man stuff.

The Apothic Man Series

MODEL SPECIES

Model Species CoverBook #1 of The Apothic Man

In Kenos, the city of enlightenment and innovation, a body with bizarre wounds is fished from the bay.

On the case are a middling apothynom, Investigator Paulos Gaent, and a religious objector to apothynom rule, Clerk Teria Bellaphaerenous. At cross purposes, a private investigator, Laros Nero, is hired by an anonymous client to discover the identity of the murderer for reasons other than justice.

It will take more than keen investigative abilities to stop the ongoing series of crimes in Kenos. It will require the unearthing of dark apothic knowledge that has been buried for an age.

Model Species is available for FREE from Smashwords (no log-in required) and Barnes & Noble.

Learn more about Weordan, the setting of the Apothic Man series.

Continue reading “The Apothic Man Series”

So, yeah… ( #amwriting )

Received a non-vague rejection from an agent yesterday. The upshot: my writing sample (in this case, the first five pages of Model Species) did not maintain the interest that, presumably, the query letter elicited. Which put Eric in "What can be improved?" mode. The advantage of Eric’s "What can be improved?" attitude is that, well, things are improved. The disadvantage is that it’s hard on the ego. The implicit statement that precedes "What can be improved?" is "Something is screwed up." Inevitably, I interpret that as "I have screwed this up…again. I suck." Maybe an understandable attitude, but not a helpful one. What followed was an evening of discussion/argument that, as usual, resolved into "Yeah, that’s something to be fixed." In this case, two things to be fixed.

First, when we rearranged Model Species, I didn’t really look at the new first scene as a first scene. This is a boneheaded mistake on my part. As a second scene it was a lull in action after an intense scene. As a first scene…well, it was a lull when it needed to be zippy. So, rewrite time for that.

The second issue: Eric and I were talking a boredom the other day. For instance, what makes a movie boring? I glibly tossed out that maybe it too is a matter of edge detection. Eric’s theory is that neurologically we rely on edge detection to gather information similarly to how it occurs in image processing. (He will undoubtedly correct me if I’m getting this wrong.) Further, it’s edges–changes and contrast–that make things exciting. Changes draw the eye, fire the neurons, stimulate the brain. To further the further, it may be the changes in any medium are the interesting part. Changes in tempo or contrasting sounds make music more listenable. An action movie that is continuous break-neck action is fairly boring. Same for a drama that is nothing but talk without tension.

The same for literature? Why not? When Eric and I talked about it the first time, I thought about it in a scene-to-scene manner. Scenes should vary in pace. Eric considered it in a more intra-scene level. If all things in a scene are given the same weight (measured in the amount of detail), does it make the scene boring? Maybe. I have a tendency to maybe homogenize details. Important things in a scene don’t stand out because I give less important things a similar amount of detail. This is a by-product of how I work. I immerse myself in characters and the world. I’m not sure if I can change that or if I want to, but maybe my writing needs an editing pass where I accentuate the important plot points and remove some of the minutia. We’ll see how that goes.

Should have learned this ten years ago? Should have taken a tougher look at Model Species? Hindsight is 20/20. Can’t do anything about the past aside from learning from it.

Indefinite Progress

I love word counts. I love to quantify my progress. For the past several years, the only time a word count has worked for me is during November. Even then, I get annoyed with the lack editing when I spew out 35,000 words. I know intellectually that progress isn’t just a number, but man, it’s rough to find satisfaction in the indefinite. Therefore, a list:

  • Eric’s in the midst of the end-of-the-semester crunch. He read my Zeta Iota changes. There are new concepts to be added and tweaked. I need to make daily progress on that. We heard from Chris last week. He probably won’t be back in the States until July (late June, early July?). Since we’d like to see him, Eric’s trip to Omaha will be moved up to early June. It would be nice to have the ball really rolling on Zeta Iota by then.
  • Sent Model Species to another three agents. Okay, two. The third needs to be sent by mail. For the record, it’s had five rejections. Okay, probably six since there’s one agent I queried that doesn’t answer unless she’s interested (most annoying policy EVER).
  • I’m continuing to post chapters of Pas de Chat. I wish I had a little more feedback on it, but I’ll just trust that someone out there is reading it. It would probably help if I were more consistent with promoting it on Twitter. I forget to hashtag…
  • I want to get back in the habit of free writing. My goal with that is to produce a some #fridayflash pieces. We’ll see how that goes.
  • Tertiary projects: I should edit the Eden story and send it out. Also, I tend to be writing a bit of fairy-tale-urban-fantasy in my flash projects. Maybe there something to be done with that.

Hmm, interesting where the month of April took me. I have more fiction online for public consumption than I ever have. Whether it’s good or bad thing remains to be seen. Whether it counts as real work is in question too. (It probably doesn’t.) I shall continue to slog onward.

Seriously, nothing to see here.

Quick Monday night update:

Ran father than I have in ages. Despite creaky body.
Realized there are no more Mikasa stores.
Got lazy and took the day off. Two of my EQ2 characters now have cool swords for their walls.
Watched Dead Presidents. (An oddly linear movie.)
Received rejection #2 for Model Species.
Talked Rifts v. 40K RPG. Going back to Rifts.
I plan on reading before heading to sleep. Double coffee at 7pm should help/hinder.
ASU kid is back to classes tomorrow.

Week One

It’s not quite amusing when the phrase "let’s get this up and running by the end of the week" is sent in a Thursday email. Regardless, registration for VOTS Spring League 2010 is up and running, assuredly including at least one completely confusing mistake.

Last night, Eric and I had a back and forth about Zeta Iota.  We dismissed a character that neither of us particularly liked and moved forward. Today, I skimmed through the latter half of my NaNo09  manuscript and grabbed two or three details that I didn’t want to reinvent. Then, I wrote 1000 words of Chapter 1.

Model Species has received one rejection.

I really want the two important things this year to be writing and reading. The apartment will surely suffer. Lines need to be put in place to keep VOTS from sucking too much time. I have already watched much less television.

It’s been a full first week of the year.