Thursday, August 30, 2012

Don't give up!

It's true in every aspect of life that dogged determination will take you further than whining or wishing. Writing is no different.

Talent is great.

Education is wonderful.

But a stubborn will to do your best, every chance you get, is mandatory for a happy life. It's mandatory if you want your dreams to become reality.

The world isn't against you. No one is holding you back. It's up to you to live a little better everyday. It's up to you to attempt, to adapt, to stretch, to push and to enjoy the results of your hard work with celebration and joy.

Don't give up.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

One more rung on the ladder

I've added a couple of pages to the blog. One to hold my future 'Arlo and Jake' posts and one for 'Prose and Such'.

It feels kinda cool. I think I've lots of 'stuff' that worth posting. And I've learned to be patient with it.

I had no idea a few months ago if this blog was a complete waste of time or not. I started it to help me market my books and ideas and get to know my fellow ePub adventurers.

I think it's good. I like it. I enjoy hearing from you and posting about the journey we're all having.

Thanks to all my friends and fellow travellers out there around the world.

Keep walking, friends.

Monday, August 27, 2012

I miss you Neil Armstrong.

I watched all of the Apollo missions as a young boy, riveted to the TV, including all the moon missions. My dreams of being an astronaut continued until my mid twenties when I was a Navy submariner.

I built and launched Estes rockets high into the Texas panhandle skies. I made rocket models of plastic and balsa. I drew pages and pages of space flight missions to the moon and all the other planets. Because I just KNEW we would continue the space program and I was going to be there.

I joined the NASA civilian program for Space Shuttle technicians while still in the Navy. It didn't happen for me but it was wonderful to get those newsletters. It made me feel like a part of something incredible.

Watching the tributes to Mr. Armstrong are bringing back long lost feelings and memories. I hope and pray that we bring back those programs and others to fuel this generations hunger for exploration.

Men and women like Mr. Armstrong fueled our imaginations then and now.

I miss you Neil.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Do you dream about your books?

OK, I'll just throw this out there and hope no one calls the Nutzoid Police.

I have great dreams. I fly, I shot lightning out my fingers (really weak little bolts but hey, it's cool anyway), I fly P51s, I drive cars with no brakes, and other cool stuff. I know from reading some buzz killer books that part of this is because I read so much just before sleeping and that sometimes my arms and hands are falling asleep so I'm feeling the nerve pain.

But at least once or twice a week I have dreams where I'm either in a scene from a book I'm writing or talking to characters I'm writing about. I don't always realize it until I wake but sometimes I do know during the dream.

Some of the scenes about PIP in 'Genome the novel' come from those dreams. PIP is an AI that runs the holoroom and bio genetics lab in the book. The idea to have her morph to different avatars came from a dream where I was talking to my computer ( yeah,  think Star Trek Scottie talking to the mouse scene ;-) and there's Elvira's head spinning around in front of me as the voice of the computer.

OK, so I'm a geek that has great dreams. How about you? Don't be shy, let me know.

Be cool, be alive and be yourself!

Best of luck!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Genome hits the Createspace shelves!!

Just a quick note to say I finally got the proof of 'Genome' approved and it's now published in paperback on Createspace!! Wow!

It's hard to believe it's actually out there AND I have paperback version in my hands! Something I created, nursed and obsessed over for years it seems. I wrote the first draft of 'Genome' as a movie script in 2006! Six years ago!

My next move is to buy a dozen copies and distribute to friends and family. I think I'll go down the local library and see if I get a copy on the shelf for 'local author'!

More later, it's late and I'm exhausted. Writing is the fun part. The rest is just a lot of work ;-)

Be cool, me buckoos!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

What about poems? Short stories? Tablet games?

I'm finally back onto 'Arlo and Jake', my humorous SciFi series. I've got 10 books outlined, the first is nearing completion and the second is started.

I'm writing 6 nights a week for one or two hours each night and having an absolute blast! Also trying to market 'Genome the novel' which is out after the 'final, final' rewrite ;-)

So why am I thinking about doing a small book of poems? Well. I have no clue, really. I just feel the need to put a few pieces of prose and poems I've written into a book and put it out there. I have no idea if it's a waste of electrons or something that people will enjoy.

I have a dozen short stories in various states, from rough outline to first draft. Some I love, some I should just throw out. (Does anyone ever really throw out an idea? Didn't think so ;-)

Tablet games? Well a few friends and I have been pondering a game or two for a while. I bought an SDK (Software Development Kit) from Corona Labs so we can write them once and 'port' to the major tablet formats without rewriting each time.

So. A lot to do, fun times. Now I need to step back and focus. I've been reading lots of other bloggers and I see I'm not alone in the 'too many irons in the fire' syndrome.

So. A lot to do. But really, isn't that a great 'problem' to have?

I have the support of friends and family. I have cool projects, active and waiting to be launched. My lovely wife lets me tap on the keyboard, night after night in front of the TV while she knits scarves for CCA. I work for an amazing company with some of the best teammates I've ever had.

So. Here's to 'having to focus'. Here's to 'lots to do'.

If you have things to write, write them. If you have games to create, create them. There has NEVER been a better time for you than now. You have access to all the followers and customers you could ever want; FOR FREE! All you have to do is create something and raise the flag. 'Hey, over here! It's my first book. It's not Pulitzer material but you'll have fun for a only a buck or two.'

We're all waiting for you to 'Just Do It'.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The last, last rewrite?

Well the marathon is over at last! Rocky found more silly dialogue comma issues just by searching for 'says' and checking for commas. Duh!

So I just completed the changes to the Nook and Kindle document and to the Smashwords version. I uploaded the new docs to PubIt, KDP, Smashwords and Createspace. Whew!

Now to wait for the sites to send me the 'A OK' email and do the final checks. Then I can order another proof from Createspace and if all goes well, launch this thing! Cross your fingers.

I hope the end result of this 'final' editing is that the reader is not distracted by lots of grammar and punctuation issues. I hope he/she can just enjoy the story.

Here's hoping that I can put 'Genome' on the shelf and get back to 'Arlo and Jake' and other projects!

Keep plugging away, Buckaroos!

Be in this moment and enjoy it.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Out damn comma, out!

OK. I spent about 16 hours proofing 'Genome' from my Createspace paperback proof copy. As I said last post, it was an eye opener to see so many tiny 'oops'es. If I had listened to my editor, this exercise would have been much easier and shorter. Listen to your support team!

I'm too pooped to upload the doc to all my distributors tonight and I don't want to make a stupid mistake now. So tomorrows task is to upload the 'final' proof. I also have to give my corrections to Rocky to add to the Createspace version. This time he gets more than lunch!

So the purpose of this little blog is to clue you in on what 80% of my mistakes were. Commas. Silly, who notices 'em, commas. And by far most of the 'errors' were in NOT including commas in dialog following the tag line. I know, I know how could I make these mistakes? I can only said I had at least 100 errors in the first 3/4 of the book and maybe 10 in the last 1/4.

Look up 'tag line' and punctuating dialog in your favorite web site but the gist of my errors were of the flavor of:
Jack said "I'm missing a comma after the word 'said'."
It should read:
Jack said, "There's that silly comma!"

"I keep getting this wrong" Sam said.
Should be:
"Now it's better," Sam said.

The rules are pretty easy, I just wrote in a stream of consciousness and then did not go back and 'fix' the problems. I wouldn't really care, to be truthful, but going back and reading the paperback version made it obvious that the correct style makes the flow of dialogue easier to comprehend.

Don't let the flow of your story stutter and halt due to poor dialog mechanics. The flow should not get in the way of the story. Take your time.

Keep writing, buckoos!