Oct 05

Where’s the Sequel?

I just got asked that question last night, as a matter of fact. By Audible. The Legion sequel is written. Actually, #3 is about half-done as well. I’m going to give #2 a good going-over and email it to my agent this weekend. The wheels of commerce grind slowly, of course, but I’m hoping this will move a little more quickly than the first book. As soon as that’s in the queue, I’ll get #3 finished and get that going as well.


Sep 30

And Going Strong

It’s now ten days later. And I am completely boggled. Legion is taking off–as I write this, the book is #2778 on the Amazon Kindle Sales Rank. I keep doing spontaneous happy dances, which gets me odd looks.

Thanks to everyone for the kind words, especially those who have taken the time to post on my site. I think the worst thing that could happen to a writer is having their work sink without a trace. Seems to me that would be even worse than bad reviews. At least with the latter, you’re getting attention and some feedback to use to improve.

Because Legion is published through a publisher’s account, I don’t have access to the sales figures and KENP numbers. All I can do is use the Amazon sales rank, and the Kindle Calculator. The ranking gets updated every hour, between half-past and twenty-to. And yeah, I’m checking my numbers obsessively. Maybe I should try getting something done, instead. 🙁

I’m doing some final edits on Legion #2 (For We Are Many) and will try to get it into the pipeline for publishing in the next couple of weeks. The lead time for Amazon e-books is fairly short, but for Audible it’s, um, significant. And yes, I’m going to wait for Ray Porter’s schedule to free up. I think everyone’s on the same page on that subject.


Sep 20

And It’s Done

It’s the 20th, and I’m now “published”. Of course, I was published when I put out Outland, but this time I have an agent and a publisher.

And I suddenly realized that I have some things I need to do. For instance, I have a mailing list. It’s not a big mailing list, but that’s not the point. The five or six people on my list presumably would like to know when a new book comes out. Okay, I’ll get going on that.

I’ve also discovered a big disadvantage of being “published.” I don’t own the Amazon account through which Legion is posted, so I can’t log on multiple times during the day and obsessively check my sales. Oh, wait. Maybe that’s a good thing.

Well, anyway, the adventure begins.

ETA: Audible has supplied me with a link to a sample from the audiobook Have a listen:



Sep 11

And now Amazon

And Legion is now available for pre-order on Amazon!

Legion on Amazon

The 20th can’t come soon enough.


Sep 05

Spike and Lucy

Spike and Lucy keep making appearances in my novels. Kind of like easter eggs.

Just for visualization, here they are…









Aug 30

We Are Legion (We Are Bob)

Legion is up on Audible.com for pre-order!

We Are Legion (We Are Bob)

The release date is now officially Sept 20th. The e-book will be released on the same day.

Woo hoo!


Aug 24

Summer Update

It has been a busy month! I have done an edit on Outland, arranged for a new cover for it, approved the cover for Legion, and written about 75% of the new novel that my agent and I discussed.

This is the third year in a row that we’ve gone up to Whistler in the summer, and I’ve spent most of the week writing. It’s really very much a writing retreat for me, and an excellent opportunity to get some heads-down work on a novel. I literally had 40k words on the new book by the time I came home.

I’m in another alpha/beta reading group on scribophile right now, and I’ll be submitting the new book when my turn comes. The novel, which I’m tentatively naming The Singularity Trap, sits at about 55k at the moment, but all the major storylines are in. I just need advice from readers on where it’s still a little thin.

On another front, I got an email from the guy who did the narration on Legion, telling me how much he enjoyed the book. (Not naming names, as that would constitute an endorsement, and I haven’t asked permission). I gotta tell ya, my head almost exploded with excitement. Any compliment is good, of course, but one from someone who is in the business, and is paid to read books, is just over the top great.

I’m finished the second Legion book, although I think it could still use a good pounding from a professional editor. The third book is at about 42k words. I’ve decided to give it a rest and come back to it in a month or so. Fresh eyes might help.

So, yeah, I have six books either finished or well along. I’m either very productive or totally scatter-brained. Haven’t decided which, yet.

Jul 29

Vacation starts tomorrow

My last day of work before vacation. Woo-hoo!

I have a laundry-list of things to do, of course, as mentioned in my previous post. But add to that some software updates that I need to make. I wrote a couple of apps in aid of the plotting of the Legion books. In particular, an XNA-based stellarium to allow me to plot Bob’s movements against actual star locations; and a timeline program to allow me to coordinate events across star systems.

Both of those apps could have a wider use, and I’m thinking of putting them up on codeproject.com after the book is out. Might be a neat kind of cross-marketing, actually.

We’ll see. My vacation seems to be full-up with stuff to do, but at least it’s stuff I want to do.

Oh, and I still need to get the Acknowledgements and Dedication pages out to Ethan before pub day.

Meanwhile, the cover art for Audible has been finalized, and we’re working on the cover art for the e-book. I’m looking forward to being able to actually put something up.


Jul 09

And, they’re off!

Ray Porter contacted me this week. Woo-hoo! Looks like my book is now in process.

He asked me about how I see my characters and I provided my opinions. There may or may not be further questions, and I’ll be happy to answer them.

In other news, after some critting on Scribophile, I’ve decided that For We Are Many needs a bit of re-work. Still too much procedural stuff, still too many roadblocks being resolved too quickly, still too many chapters with little or no conflict. And, IMO, scenes still being whipped past too quickly.

So I’ve re-sorted my latest revision back into the individual sub-plots, and I’m going to try to write each one as a novella. And I have to watch the number of POVs, something that is a constant problem with this series.

I’ll be on vacation soon, so I’ll have two weeks to just heads-down hammer on it. I anticipate having book 2 finished and editor-ready by the end of August.

Meanwhile, my agent and I are slowly working on my next (non-Bob) book. It’s going to be a busy time for me. I have to:

  • Finish For We Are Many
  • Finish book 3 of the bobiverse (about half-written, first draft)
  • Re-edit Outland
  • Finish book 2 of Outland.
  • Write the book that Ethan and I are discussing.

He’s also pointed out Tor’s periodic requests for submission of novellas in various categories. He thinks it wouldn’t hurt for me to submit something to them. As it happens, I have an ideas list with more than 130 items on it, at latest count. Some of the ideas are too ‘thin’ for a full novel, but could certainly form a novella in the 25-40k range. I’ll have to keep that in mind.

Sadly, having a day-job puts a severe crimp in my writing productivity. 🙂 Maybe someday…


Jun 01

Writing Redux

I’d like to go off on a slight tangent with this post. I’ve been working madly on book 2 of Legion, and I am pausing to think about how the process has evolved for me.

When I started writing Outland, end of May 2014, I basically just fired up WORD and started typing. But I’m realistic enough to know that there’s craft involved, so I also started buying books, reading articles, and joining forums.

I ended up on absolutewrite.com, which is a huge site traffic-wise. It has a lot of good information, although it’s relatively hard to find. Most of it is in threads with hundreds of entries, and the only way to glean the information you want is to start at post 1…

I also initially joined critiquecircle.com, and learned a lot from getting my work publicly flayed. However, I found the need to post submissions several weeks in advance to be a pain, and I eventually moved to scribophile. For the record, the paid memberhip is worth getting.

On scrib, I joined the Uber critting group. The advantage of this is that you end up in a sub-group of 4-6 people, and you crit each other’s work week after week. So you get consistent crits from the same people. And I find the level of skill to be very high amongst the members.

I also joined the Beta Readers group. Same idea– you are organized into a small group of 4-6 people, and you swap manuscripts on a schedule. Again, consistent betas and good quality results.

With all this input, my writing has been improving constantly. I’ve been able to identify my weak spots and specifically target them in my work. Multiple edit passes, using what I learn in each Uber crit, combined with feedback from beta readers, allow me to make significant strides in a relatively short time. I honestly can’t see how writers managed to get anywhere before the interwebz.

As of this writing, book 1 is being produced at Audible, book 2 is going through final edits, and book 3 is about a third written. The main plot points are in place in book 3, just needing fleshing out. The question of a print publisher for Legion is still up in the air. If we don’t get a bite by September, we’ll just put the e-book up under the agent’s imprint and hope for better traction down the road.

My agent has asked me for a list of ideas for future books, and we’ll be discussing that at some point. My Ideas List has 113 entries at the moment, so I had to trim it down to a dozen or so of the ideas that I like best. We’ll see how that goes.

Anyway, the journey continues, and I’m still nervous.

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