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The Rise of Genesis: The Rise of 2016

Posted by on 10:02 am in Matty Says, Uncategorized, Writing | 2 comments

The Rise of Genesis: The Rise of 2016

On social media and the blog the past year I`ve spent a lot of time talking about struggling with writing and making sure I put out the best book that I can. Because of that desire, it`s been over a year-and-a-half since my last book, Endure, came out. It`s been a long wait for both you and for me. My readers have been so supportive and incredible, I feel blessed for the opportunity to put out another story. Over the past few years I`ve gone through ups and down in my personal life (who hasn’t), which derailed both my desire to write and my discipline to do so. What surprised me most about this experience is how hard it was to get back to that place. A place where every night after work I sat down and…well, got back to work, but on something I had a passion about. It was a real eye-opener to me on how difficult it can be to not just create routine, but regain it once you’ve lost it. I think it`s important to point out that I wasn’t just trying to create routine, I was trying to obtain the exact routine and work ethic I had years ago. An impossible feat. My life is a lot different now with two kids and a different job, and a small army of pets, and different commitments, etc. But thus far, over the past six months, I’ve managed to carve out a system that seems to be working, and every month I get a little more productive. So that brings us to this, what have I been working on? The Rise of Genesis is a surprise project for me. It wasn’t what was supposed to come next. Originally I had been writing The Nova Chronicles, an Urban Fantasy series still in the works, but after my long writing break, I wasn’t ready for it. I began writing Sacred cities, which in the end, I re-wrote three times and the last draft ended at 183k words. I know. I scrapped that book multiple times and started over, I couldn’t nail down what I was trying to accomplish. Maybe I didn’t even know. The reality was that it wasn’t a story ready to be told, and halfway through the second draft of that monstrous book, I said “no more.” I put it aside in a dusty digital folder and decided to give it a break. At that point I didn’t know what I wanted to do. Did I  have only one series in me? Were all these ideas and exciting plots in my mind garbage? Maybe I’m not a real writer. These are the thoughts I battled with for a long time, and a part of me knows that the only reason I kept writing was for the few people in my life that continued to encourage me. The result of that encouragement turned into my next book, The Rise of Genesis. I didn’t outline, I didn’t think, I did only what I love to do–create. I wrote without reason. I had an idea bout a single character, and like the first draft of Exiled, I had a scene in my head and I let it go. A little magic happened then and a story was born. One...

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Genesis Cover Reveal Sign-up

Posted by on 9:17 am in News, Publishing | 3 comments

Genesis Cover Reveal Sign-up

The time has come ladies and gentlemen. The opportunity to join the pack and sign-up for The Rise of Genesis cover reveal is upon us. If you have a blog or website and want to take part, we’d love to have you. It’s been almost two years since I published something and the landscape has changed a lot. I’m hoping anybody who can lend a hand to announce the new book will be willing. I’m definitely going to need all the help I can get. The cover reveal is coming on February 8th, 2016, and a little more than a month later, the book be out! Right now I have a soft date of March 15th, 2016. Unless some unforeseeable circumstances arrive, the book should be ready to go. I can’t tell you in proper words how excited I am for this. 2016 is off to a great start and it’s only going to get better. If you don’t have a blog or a website and still want to help out, sharing the posts on Twitter, Facebook, or whatever your choice of social media outlet is, would be huge! Thank you in advance to everybody who participates in spreading the word of Genesis. It’s coming at you in two months and together, we’re going to take one hell of an adventure!   Want to sign up? Click the image below for the sign-up sheet!         A cursed forest, a dark past, a friend not forgotten, and a chance at redemption. Three new-found friends have to decide between lives in captivity, or risking their lives for...

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Writing Update

Posted by on 12:24 pm in News, Publishing, Writing | 2 comments

Writing Update

I am officially terrible. I have not posted here in months. That doesn’t mean that I’m not around though! I’ve been busting my butt to get the final draft of The Rise of Genesis complete, and my editor is ready for it in January. We’re looking at an early March release folks, which means a cover reveal will be coming at you soon! That’s right, there really is a new book. I wasn’t making it all up! I’ve spent the past few months focusing on getting back into routine with writing almost every day, and I’ve been successful for the most part! I’m starting to get back in the groove that I was in with The Protector series, and I’m hoping to have two to three new books out next year. The first will be The Rise of Genesis, the second and third will be the sequel to this series and the first in a new series, Sacred Cities. That was the one that gave me all the grief and it’s the reason we haven’t seen a book in so long. I wrote and rewrote and edited that book for a year and it just never came together. As sorry as I am to have been absent, I’m not completely sorry. You all have been amazing, and the last thing I want to do is release something sub-par. Now I think I’m finally equipped to take on the full force of Sacred Cities and trust me, it’ll be worth the wait. It’s an amazing world which rich characters and awesome magic. It was just missing a few screws to keep it all together, and now that I have all the pieces, it’s ready to rock! As most of my posts state over the last year, I am sorry for the irregularities. I promise I’m getting back on track, and I’ll have some new flash fiction up in my coming posts. Rather than fill this blog with news, I want to put some fun back into it. That’s why I started writing in the first place–it was fun. And it will be again. That’s a big part of what’s been missing the last two years. As things have come back around though, they’ll be plenty of fun to be had. Over the next year, we’re going to jump into new worlds and experience Fantasy on a new level. As I’ve gotten back into routine with my writing, I’ve noticed I have a ton of ideas flying past me. It’s true what they say; creativity breeds creativity. It’s time to grab some of that mojo by the balls and make something happen. Perhaps you’ll get a little entertainment out of it.   Until then, stay warm, because it’s damn cold up...

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The Draft is Done!

Posted by on 10:43 am in News, Publishing, Writing | 4 comments

The Draft is Done!

Back to the grind today at the day job after two weeks off. It was an amazing two weeks, the first of which I spent on a family getaway. The weather was hot, beaches were beautiful, and the family vacation was a blast. The kids had a great time and so did I. It wasn’t easy coming back to reality, but such is life. After holidays, I spent the second week dedicated to my current work-in-progress. So dedicated, in fact, that it’s done. That’s right, I worked my fingers to the bone collecting over 30k words in two days and bringing the first draft of what we’ve known thus far as Blackwood to an end. After that, I took a few days break. My wife read the rough draft, to which the response was very encouraging, and I spent time making minor plot points for future books, cover ideas, title ideas, and outlining my approach to editing. With those tools in hand, I went back to work and am almost 20% through the first round of edits. This is exciting guys and girls! It’s been a little over two years since Endure  came out, and it’s been a rough patch for me. Life hit hard and knocked me down, I wrote Sacred Cities, rewrote Sacred Cities, ripped it apart and fixed it, and finally I gave up on it. I’d had enough and it was time to work on something else. SC just wasn’t working for me. Thus began Blackwood earlier this year. During my time writing Blackwood several things happened. First, I realized the issues plaguing SC. I now have the information needed to approach this story in the right way, fixing the mistakes with yet another rewrite. The silver lining of having to rewrite this again is that so much of the development is already done, it’s just a matter of realigning characters and plot points, and actually writing the words. I expect the re-write to be a fairly speedy one. The second thing that happened while writing Blackwood was that I hit my stride again. By that I mean I rediscovered my passion for story telling, something I’d lost in my unexpected two-year frustration. All this is to say it’s come together and we’ll definitely have a new book ready for you this year! I’ll be reaching out to my cover artist, Parajunkee Design, later this week on the cover for the new book. The title will be revealed soon! I’ll be busting out edits over the next two to three weeks, and then it’s off to a close friend for reading and if all goes well with her read-through, this book is off to beta readers. Exciting times have arrived here. We have a new book to actually look forward to, and Sacred Cities will not be far behind. Once I’ve finished this book and it’s ready for publication, I’ll be knee-deep in redrafting the SC story and getting you the first installment in what I think we be a fabulous Post-Apocalyptic adventure!   In the mean time, Exiled  is currently free on all eBook platforms, so if you haven’t read it yet or you know it’ll be a hit with someone you know, now is your...

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I May Have to Quit you GOT

Posted by on 11:01 am in Random, Rant And Ramble | 2 comments

I May Have to Quit you GOT

Game of Thrones. I think many of us can admit there is a no-holds-bar story here that really grabs a hold of  us. I haven’t read the books, and I won’t pretend that I haven’t loved the show. I have. I just don’t know if I continue it any more. At least not on a week-by-week basis. I had no idea what to expect when I started watching it, but it’s quickly turned into a bit of a regret. The reason? Hopelessness. I get it. I do. The real world is cruel, we suffer consequences to our actions. We make our beds, we lie in them, we deal, life goes on…most of the time. The same is true for a story, and in this case, more specifically, Game of Thrones. Not everybody lives. Or in GOT’s case, everybody dies! It’s a sad truth that we all recognize. It’s like real life! The thing is, I already live in real life. Real life is already difficult at times. I already see death and sacrifice. I’ve already experience loss and pain. I’ve made mistakes and luckily I’ve lived to learn from them. I’ve done all this. Not on the same grand scale of course, but it’s existent in my life nonetheless. I feel it’s safe to say it exists in all of our lives to some degree. But I don’t want to watch real life. I live in real life. I want a story. Something different. I want to be taken on an adventure, and one that I’m happy to be on. I’m not sure I share that happiness with GOT any longer.     ***POSSIBLE SPOILERS AHEAD***     When Ned was taken in the first season, I was shocked. That word doesn’t even do true justice to how I felt. It was more like throwing a remote through a TV screen because it was the TV’s fault. I couldn’t believe it. Then Rob, Lady Stark, and a few others and I realized this show doesn’t hold back. How intense! At first it was gripping. I couldn’t believe they would slaughter my favorites. Soon after the second season, I began to get bored with it. I continued, of course, because I loved what was being created. The tension was…well, intense! The action was thick and the characters were rich. As the story has progressed through, I feel like each season has let me down a little more. That’s not to say it isn’t all fantastically put together, it is. From acting to directing to screenplay–it’s all wonderful. I just don’t know that it’s for me anymore. The reason for that feeling, I think, is the lack of hope. The entire reason I watch a show or movie, or read a book, is to enter another realm. My imagination joins with the creator’s for a little while and I let them take me on a whirlwind. Sometimes the bad guys win and sometimes I like that. It’s a nice change of pace. But it can’t be the only pace. The thing is, hope must be kept alive and in long-running sagas, sometimes it must be re-instilled in the consumer of said content. GOT is quickly teaching me there is no reason to hope for anything in this world. Don’t get too attached to...

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When Passion Returns

Posted by on 9:04 am in News, Publishing, Writing | 6 comments

When Passion Returns

My books are in a few book stores in my province, but the local Chapters is easily where they are most popular. They’ve been kind enough to give me prime placement on a local authors shelf in the Teen section, and it’s amazing how much better a book sells with cover out on a eye-level shelf. I speak with the managers there from time to time, and occasionally I get to hear a story that really brightens my day. Recently, while a women tried to find a book her son might actually read (he doesn’t like to do so), my book was recommended. She was on the fence. Was this something he would read, or was it another novel that would get thrown into a pile gathering dust? A second customer interrupted the discussion to explain how her son, who absolutely hated reading, found my book and tore right through it. He read Exiled and Shift in a short amount of time, forcing them to drive in from out-of-town (an hour away) and pick up the next installment. Well, this is all that customer needed to hear to pick up one of my books. That’s the kind of stuff that changes my life. I wrote Exiled for the express purpose of entertaining readers, but more so, in hopes that I could produce a book that would show a young reader that reading can be awesome. I wanted something that could grab–and hold–their attention. To hear stories about how that is actually happening is an incredible thing, really. If you follow me on any social media sites, or check this blog from time to time, you know I haven’t published a book in two years. You also know that I’ve been working on new books off and on, but something has been missing. The truth is, After going through a difficult spell, I lost my passion for story telling. It’s not that I didn’t like writing anymore. I did. It’s that I no longer made it a priority. I had gone back to work full-time, my kids are getting older and with that means we are getting busier. I was lost. I didn’t know what I wanted to do anymore. Did I even want to publish? It’s a tough game. Sales spike and fall drastically, leaving you on the edge of seat and an eye on your bank account. Would I make it through the next month? With two little girls I had no choice. I had to make it work. I have others to take care of besides myself, and they have needs I won’t sacrifice like my own. I’ve written one book nearly three times in the past two years. I couldn’t get it right. Not to the point I was satisfied. I have a cover and a story, but the X factor is missing from it. I abandoned that project a few months ago. I needed to give it, and myself, a break. I started a new book, and I have to tell you, I’m excited about it. I’m excited about it like I was when I first started writing Exiled. It has the magic I need, the pace I want, and the characters I love. It’s going to be out later this year. I’m over halfway...

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A Power Riddle

Posted by on 10:26 pm in Matty Says, Random, You Tell Me | 0 comments

A Power Riddle

Most of us use them every day, although sometimes in the wrong way. They can break hearts or mend them. They can change lives, or ruin them. They can be invisible, or seen anywhere. They can tear us down, or lift us up. They can hurt us, or they can heal us. They can take us on adventures, or bring us back to reality. They can confuse us, or help us understand. They mean nothing to anyone, but everything to us. What are they?       Words. They’re interesting things. If you didn’t know it already, now that you have the answer, you can see how everything above applies.   They mean nothing to anyone, but everything to us.    Water is my zone. It’s not my element, it’s not part of my astral sign, but it’s my place of comfort. It helps me think and sort through thoughts and ideas, and on occasion, it gets me clean. While in my zone, I realized something: words are powerful. You didn’t need me to tell you that, and when I thought it, I didn’t think it was news. What really had me thinking is how a word(s) can mean something to one person, and nothing to another. Sometimes it matters who is saying those words. Or does that person matter at all? Do words themselves hold power? The word hate and the word love can mean everything or nothing to us. It really depends how we feel at the moment they’re said, and who might be saying them. If somebody you don’t care about, or perhaps don’t even like, says I love you, what do those words mean to you? Probably nothing. On the other hand, if somebody you’ve been dating for a while says it, and they’re the type of person that makes you feel like butterflies are shooting cannonballs across your stomach while tap dancing to Living the Vida Loca, it’s a pretty powerful thing. It’s not that the words mean anything different in theory, but they mean something different because of how we perceive them. We don’t care that the first person loves us, but those words were powerful to them. That’s why they said it. But we wanted the second person to love us, and it meant the world to both of us. Can the same thing be applied to books? Art? Everything? Someone might hate your book and that doesn’t bother you, but someone else can hate it and it tears you up inside. It’s the power we give. Words are in the ears(?) of the beholder. They mean to us what we let them, or in some cases, want them to.  That’s a strange thought. We all know what it means to hate something, yet we can throw the word around a hundred times in a day, hear it from a hundred people, and it only matters a part of the time. Those times are because they’re important to us. Because in those moments, we gave those words power. But based on that, do we have the ability to steal the power back? Do we have the power to choose not to have them affect us? I’m not so sure. Words are not spoken and then dropped. They don’t just go out never to come back. They’re always picked up...

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Mystery Project

Posted by on 2:59 pm in Author Advice, Publishing, Random, Writing | 2 comments

Mystery Project

So as my last few posts outlined, Sacred Cities gave me a run for my money. I worked on it for a little over a year, although there were plenty of down times in between, and I finally threw in the towel…temporarily. I wrote 80k words in it, deleted 50k, then rewrote it up to 185k, had it finished, and partway through my first read through I knew something still wasn’t right. Not just one thing, but a lot of things. There was a decision to be made that wasn’t easy. I had to decide whether to tackle it again, tear it down and build it back up, or put it aside. The best decision I ever made was opting for the latter, for several different reasons. First, because I needed a break. I think Sacred Cities and I were too close. We were butting heads and I was trying to make it something it wasn’t. I didn’t realize it had a life of it’s own, and I was holding on too tight. I wasn’t happy about it, but I did it to myself, really, and it took me longer than it should have to realize it. The good that came out of it was I learned what it felt like to write against the grain. I forced it when I should have relaxed, and now I know what that feels like. That’s a good thing. Second, it gave me a chance to start a new book that had been tugging at my creative strings for a while. That is the mystery project, and to refrain from jinxing it, so to speak, it will remain that until I’m certain it’s ready. While Sacred Cities was the book I wanted to come back to the publishing world with, it wasn’t ready, and in all honesty, maybe I wasn’t either. The mystery project is taking me back to square one, a place I seemed to have forgotten: writing for fun. Writing what I want to read. Closing my eyes, letting go, and watching an action-packed adventure come to life. Over the past two weeks, that’s what I’ve been doing. I let the cursor on the blank page blink a few times and I started writing. It began as a paragraph outline that quickly expanded to a few pages. I created character outlines, back stories, and researched myths and legends and demons and all things that go bump in the night. It was fun again. I never finished the detailed chapter by chapter outline, and that too is a good thing. I felt too much excitement toward the story and needed to start, so I did. In a short time I racked up 26k words, and the story flowed with rapid excitement. Not only that, but I’m liking what I read when I review my chapters. It’s still exciting the second time through. I’m having fun, the story is coming to life in a way that Chase, Rayna, Willy, and Tiki came to life. I’m seeing a different world, feeling the magic against my skin, and it feels incredible. Sacred Cities isn’t finished, and it’s not put aside forever either. I know what it needs now, and thanks to the mystery project, I can feel the difference between when something is working for me and when...

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A Story is Born

Posted by on 8:22 pm in Rant And Ramble | 4 comments

A Story is Born

The New Year came with some decisions to be made, and as such, I have made them. Sacred Cities is going on the back burner for a little while. After 15 months and over 200k words in drafts and rewrites, I need a break. There is something about this story that I cannot let go. I can’t just scrap it as a lost cause. The story is there, it wants to be told, and it’s wonderful. Unfortunately, at the moment there is a lot of crap on top of the wonderful, and I’m a little tired of digging through it. I’ll be taking some time to tackle the blank page with a new story that has been pulling at me for several months. A lot of the beginning outline has been done in my down time the last few months and I think I’m ready to take this day dream to the next level. Sacred Cities was very heavy and emotional for me. Not just because of the content within the story, but because of everything I had tried to deal with while writing it. That may be part of why it’s been such a cluster of crap throughout several drafts. With the new story I’ll be working on, I’m going to bring the Fantasy, adventure, passion, and magic back to my world. I’m going to reach deep into my soul and just let it out. I want it to be exciting, fun, and something that pulls at my heart strings. I’m not setting any major goals or expectations for it. I’m just going to write. Unlike last year, I’m not setting writing goals or publication dates. I’m just going to hit the keyboard and see what happens. When I wrote The Protector series, that’s what I did. I just closed my eyes, opened up the story and wrote. I think that’s what Sacred Cities lacked, or is lacking. I took it too seriously. I didn’t let it evolve. I forced it into what I wanted it to be, and it ended up being too serious and often times dull. The scenes that were exciting, and the ones that will most likely remain once I tear it all down and rebuild it, were the ones I wrote when I just said “Fuck it!” and let the story go. That’s where I’m heading again. That’s where I need to go. Screw the sales ranks. Disregard the sales figures. Forget the business of writing for a little while and just write. That’s the plan. That’s the only plan. Write a story I want to write because it’s the type of story I want to read. That’s what has been missing and that’s what needs to come back. I realize now that when you take things too seriously, when writing becomes a job instead of an outlet, or a cause instead of passion, it doesn’t succeed. Success, to me, is writing a story I am proud of. If even one person reads it, and if one person can find joy in it, that that is my success. I write for me, and if some people can find a place to escape in that, that’s a win. The new book is not just a new book, it’s a new chapter in my life...

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2015 and the loss of 2014

Posted by on 11:59 am in Author, Author Advice, Publishing, Rant And Ramble, Writing | 7 comments

2015 and the loss of 2014

2014 was a difficult year of evolution for me. It was better than 2013, which was a horrible experience for the most part,but 2014 did not shape up to be what I thought it would. It’s not all completely wasted, but I definitely expected a more powerful year. Instead, it was a year of growth and learning, which in all honesty, can be painful. At the end of 2013, I was ready for a new year. Boy, was I ready. I had published the final book in The Protector series, Endure, and I was moving on to bigger things after a year struggling through personal issues. Then 2014 came, and suddenly it was gone. I didn’t write as faithfully as I had in previous years. I can admit that much. My writing was sporadic at best. At first, and for most of the year, I thought it was me. I was recovering from major losses, my entire world had been changed, and I was trying to rediscover who I was and what I wanted out of life. I knew I wanted to keep writing, I just didn’t have it in me all the time. I thought one day I’d wake up and just be ready to get back at it. I wasn’t. Instead, I tried forcing it, regaining a little of my lost passion piece by piece, but even when I was sure I was ready, I still struggled. I wrote 80k words of Sacred Cities when I realized it wasn’t working. I probably realized it earlier, but I didn’t want to admit it. When I finally accepted it, I knew I had to do something drastic, something I’d never had to do before: I would delete a major chunk of the book and start again. 50k words to be exact. Even if you’re not a writer, surely you can understand how heartbreaking it is to delete that much of your work. I didn’t let it drag me down though, I grabbed the silver lining and told myself how much better the book would be because of it. I worked my butt off from that point on, and when it was done (again!) at a monstrous 183k words, I knew cutting those words was for the best. With my knew novel in rough draft  I was ready to start editing. The problem was, the 183k I’d written had been spread out over half the year. I didn’t realize what poor shape my story was in. Editing the book was painful. Very painful. I continued to tell myself I had to force my way through it to get back in the groove, but it wasn’t working. That’s when I realized that the book wasn’t done. Once again it wasn’t right, but this time I didn’t know why. I left it alone for a month, raking my brain over it. At this point, after 2 years of struggling, I was ready to call it quits. I had multiple other books in mind, a few of which were really exciting to me, and I’d start on one of those instead. As I prepared to write an all-together new book, I realized all this time it wasn’t  me finding my groove that was the problem, it was the book I had been writing. I was...

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