When Passion Returns

When Passion Returns

Posted by on Jun 5, 2015 in News, Publishing, Writing | 6 comments

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...

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Holy Sh*t It’s Almost Done

Holy Sh*t It’s Almost Done

Posted by on Aug 25, 2014 in Editing, News, Publishing | 3 comments

Sacred Cities that is. This draft is going to be completed within the week. I can’t believe it. I should be able to because I’ve already written four books, but this one was different. I started this book in November of last year, and I could have written it in six weeks, but I had such a struggle sitting down and getting it done that it seems like an eternity since I started it. It’s true that this book is fifty percent bigger than my others (at the moment), and so it did require a lot more writing time, but the majority of this book has been written since the middle of July. And now it’s almost here. What’s more is that over the last week, I’ve worked with my amazing cover designer, Parajunkee, and we have a cover. Not just a cover, of course, but an amazing work of art. One that makes me excited to release this story into the world. Although this draft is nearly complete, that isn’t to say there isn’t a lot of work to be done. I have to rewrite some sections of the book, do some major hacking and slashing of non-necessary content, alter some timelines and enhance some characters, and then get this book off to the first round of betas. After that, I’ll do another rewrite, send it to another group of betas, self edit the hell out of it, and get it to my copy editor. After that it’s proofreaders and finally, format it for all publishing outlets. Will I make it before the end of the year? Yes. Will this book be out by the end of the year? I’m not sure. I published Release in December of 2012, and I’m not sure that’s the best month to release a new novel. I haven’t committed to a date just yet, but I may hold onto it and do a January release. That part is still up for debate, but the fact of the matter is this book is coming at you, and I think you’re going to love it. Over the next few months I’ll be releasing teasers, snippets, doing a cover reveal, and working with Stuck in Books on a blog tour. If you want to catch those teasers and sample chapters, as well as get the cover before the rest of the world, be sure to sign up for my newsletter. Those of you who have signed up already, you haven’t missed anything because I haven’t released my first newsletter yet. It’s been something I’ve talked about doing for a year and haven’t worked on, but with Sacred Cities wrapping up, my focus will be shifting and they’ll be special content coming, as well as a special giveaway exclusive to newsletter subscribers only. Oh, and with all of this is something else that’s exciting: a complete revamp of the...

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The Power of Ideas

The Power of Ideas

Posted by on Aug 7, 2014 in News, Publishing, Writing | 4 comments

As I’ve made progress through the first draft of Sacred Cities, I find myself encountering a new problem. It’s a problem I’ve seen many writers face over the years, but not one that I have had up until recently. That problem is an overwhelming supply of ideas, of which I’ve found the power to be intense. During the years I worked on The Protector series, I remained extremely focused. Sure, I had plenty of other ideas, but none that were in any form demanding. With Sacred Cities however, I’ve discovered a handful of stories that are not only screaming to be written, they’re tempting me away from my WIP. At this point in my writing venture, I haven’t given in. There have been times where I’ve taken writing breaks in order to write down brief scene outlines or ideas, but that is just to hush the voices…so to speak. Thus far that seems to be working, and I’ve made some impressive progress this last little while. When I tackle a project, I commit to it entirely, and because of that Sacred Cities is almost complete. This story has been a long time coming, and with a few major breakthroughs the last few days, it’s really exciting to be at this point in a story again. The first draft will be done before the end of August, and because I’ve been working on this project off and on for the entire year, there is no reason to give it time to breathe afterwards. I’ll be jumping directly into revisions, and I’m pushing to get this book completed as soon as possible. I’ll have a cover ready at the end of August, and as I work through revisions and coordinate schedules with my editors, this book will *hopefully* be out before the end of the year. That all depends on other people’s schedules and timelines, which I have to respect. I’ll admit it’s a much later date than I had hoped, but it took me longer than I anticipated to get back in the driver’s seat with my writing. The good news is there will not be nearly as long of a wait for the next book. I’ll begin writing it the day I send Sacred Cities to the editors. My goal is have Sacred Cities out this year, and have at least two new books for you in 2015. It’ll require a lot of commitment, even more hours, and a lot of creative energy, but I think I can handle it, and I know you deserve it for the long wait between books this time around. As I wind down on the first draft of this novel and begin revisions, I am excited to say that I’ll be putting out my first Newsletter with some teasers inside, so if you’re not signed up, make sure you do! I won’t be sending them out...

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I’m Still Here!

I’m Still Here!

Posted by on Jun 24, 2014 in Blog Events, News, Publishing, Random, Writing | 3 comments

Wow, okay, so it’s been over two months since I posted, and a month since I was able to add any wordage to Sacred Cities, but I’m back up and running. With a brand new computer glowing on my desk, I’m ready to go. It’s not that my other computer was broken or inoperable, it’s just that I hated it. I’d given a serious and honest effort to the Mac, but I just couldn’t do it. I’m back to PC and I’m loving it. Now, before all the Mac junkies come out and bite me, the computer itself was great. It’s incredibly fast, even after 18 months, but the OS just isn’t for me. It’s nothing against the Mac product, just that it isn’t what I am looking for. Now I’m sporting a new Toshiba all-in-one that makes my inner geek really happy, and I’m ready to get back to work. In the midst of my computer change, there was also a job change, and a trip to Seattle where I attended the Emerald City Author Event for my first group signing. Seattle was a really cool city. We did all the touristy things we could do, and I learned Seattle has quite the history, one that was shared with us by probably the coolest tour guide ever. But more on that later in a separate Seattle-only post. Right now is update time. The first draft of Sacred Cities is nearly complete. I’m hoping that by the end of next month I’ll be deep into revisions. I’m currently working with the incredible Parajunkee on the cover, and all-in-all I’m hoping to have it all available for you late this Fall. Much later than I had anticipated, of course, but the first book in the series requires a bit more attention to lay the groundwork for what’s to come. I apologize for the wait on the book, and the blog silence, but it’ll all be worth it! Now, what’s to come? I’m going to be revamping the blog design here in the next month or two, revealing the cover for Sacred Cities once I have it, posting some new short stories up on the website, and working on two different standalone novels as well. Aside from the short stories, the blog posts are going to change a little too. Right now they’re very much just updates, teasers, etc. I won’t tell you exactly how they’re going to change yet, but the changes are going to be awesome and take a big turn toward creative writing and sharing some different things with you! Prepare for the...

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First Signing Jitters

First Signing Jitters

Posted by on Apr 7, 2014 in Author, News, Writing | 9 comments

Last Saturday I had my first ever book signing. It was a terribly intimidating event. A fear of being that guy at the table that nobody comes to see replayed over and over in my head leading up to the event. I would sit there for five hours growing increasingly sweaty and gross, until eventually I was just that slobby wet dude that the store manager kicked out. In my head, it wasn’t a pretty event. In my head there was a soul-crushing amount of pressure about to crumble me. When I got there however, it wasn’t so bad. It started out a little rocky and fairly quiet. I’m pretty sure I looked like that guy completely out of his element, but one of the girls that worked there came over and chatted me up, got me to sign her book, and made me feel a lot better about how nervous I was. I’m fairly certain she won’t be able to read anything I wrote though, my hands were sweating which made it hard to grip the pen, and then of course my hands were also shaking. On a good day, my penmanship is horrid, on a sweaty-hand-shaky-hand day, it’s…well let’s just say I should’ve brought my seven-year-old in as a replacement. She has nice writing. As the day progressed, the store grew busier and for every person that came up to talk to me, I shed a little bit of that nervous skin. Not literally though, that’d be gross. Also, with how nervous I was there’d have been a pile of dead skin the size of me and…yeah, gross. Anyways, I started to get more comfortable as I found my rhythm, and I talked to a ton of great people. I received some book recommendations I’m excited to jump into, and I think I made a lot of connections. I even met a few actual fan’s in the fourteen – sixteen year range and two of them had a little trouble speaking to me. Apparently I wasn’t the only one who was nervous. That made me feel a little better. To sit and chat with someone in my target audience and listen to them gush about my book was a humbling experience. On a bit of different note, I realize my elevator pitch needs a little work, but I did get some people really excited for Sacred Cities, which is awesome. That book is going to kick ass, and right now the redraft is going great! I know you’re wondering so I thought I’d just tell you. So overall my first book signing was a success. I met fans, new readers, received some exciting book recommendations, and learned a lot about myself in the process. I have another one coming up this Saturday in Edmonton, so if you’re in the area and able to make it over to the...

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Holiday Update

Holiday Update

Posted by on Feb 9, 2014 in Author, Blog Events, News, Publishing, Writing | 2 comments

As promised, I got down to business on my holidays. It was later than I had hoped, but word count is word count, right? After what I can only describe as an amazing trip to Canmore, I felt very refreshed. My wife and I ended up staying an extra night, and it was beautiful there. This was the view from our hotel balcony. I can promise you that this picture doesn’t do it justice. It’s a small town, but man, it was beautiful up there. Surprisingly, it was warmer and there was less snow than here in Red Deer. Huh. After we came home I had to spend a few days getting some things in order, but then I got down to work. I had two decent days, putting down 14,000 words in my new novel, which in case you missed my Facebook post, is tentatively titled Sacred Cities. This a Post-Apocalyptic Urban Fantasy, and I think you’re going to love it. At least I hope you do. No, I mean I know you will. Ah, yes, such is the flippity-floppity of a writer. I’ve added two new events to my upcoming Events page. I’m going to be in my locals Chapters on March 29th to do a book signing. I’ll be there from 12pm-4pm, and if you’re anywhere in the local area, I’d love for you to come down and say “hello!” If that’s a bit of a trek, I’ll also be in Seattle, at the Red Lion hotel on 5th Avenue on June 14th. If you’re anywhere in the area then and you want to meet up, check out the website and get tickets. It’s a multi-author signing and there are going to be a ton of great people there. It’s something I definitely do not want you to miss if at all possible. And I think I’m going to spend a few days just checking out the area afterwards, because Seattle is a city I’ve always wanted to visit, so going there for the first time will be a blast. I’ve had a Newsletter sign-up sheet in the top right corner of my blog for quite some time now, but I haven’t actually been using it. I was having some trouble with the provider and whatnot, all of which has now been ironed out. My first News Letter will be coming out at the end of February, so sign up if you’re interested in some special news and exclusive content. I’m not going to be posting many novel sneak peeks on the website, so if you want to see them all, be sure to sign up. Speaking of sneak peaks. Laura at Little Read Riding Hood has the first chapter of my current work-in-progress, Sacred Cities going up on her blog on February 21st. This is the world’s first look at my new project, and I really...

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