3rd Annual Heroes Resource’s Fall Festival

Fall Fest Raffle_2Hey Fans in Northern Washington State, I will be signing books and giving away swag at

3rd Annual Heroes Resource’s Fall Festival

Saturday October 25th in Lynden WA.

They have Guest Artist’s, Authors, and Game Designers. There will be a costume contest, door prizes, game tournaments, Food vendors, the road will be half-closed for the safety of families. I have gone each year and had lots of fun. Hope to see you there.

http://www.facebook.com/events/1479287548998347/

Guests:
http://elizabethguizzetti.com/
www.facebook.com/pages/1314-Art-of-Ben-Hansen
www.facebook.com/BethSobelIllustration
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ian-Styer/498179706896404
www.facebook.com/pages/Psychedelic-Circumstances
www.facebook.com/BarnCatRadio
http://www.daportfolio.com/493591/
https://www.facebook.com/AuthorMadisonKeller

Life of an author: 7 Ways to Keep the Creeping Bitterness at Bay

Yesterday I read this article: http://www.marcandangel.com/2014/09/28/20-things-to-remember-when-you-think-youre-not-good-enough/  I loved it enough to put on my Facebook Page and then I decided to write my own list, specifically for authors.

I wanted to roll myself in blankets with Rosie.

Every author has days they just want to hide under the blankets.

Every author has felt the creep of bitterness when they watch another author do well publicly. We want to be supportive to one another, but deep inside, is a little voice asking “Why isn’t that me?”

Right now, there are the fall releases. Most authors have author friends. And a lot of them are putting out new books. A friend and I went to a reading for two authors in our acquaintance. We stayed for the reading, but during mingle time, the friend was anxious to leave and overwhelmed. Why? Because she was jealous. Her first book just had another rejection and here two of our friends  seemed to have all the success in the world.

Guess what? I know the inner workings of these two authors well enough to know that they don’t have it all. Yet, even I, feel that creeping anger that overtakes my being and stops me from moving forward. You see, I talk a good game and I hide it well. But it’s always there threatening to break out. This is how I control it.

1) Remember EVERY BOOK has a sales arc from release date to current time.

Every book’s sales drop off after the release blitz. Every Book. Some will hit the top 100 lists and some won’t. Not every book from the same best-selling author will hit the best seller lists.  But every book goes up after its release and then comes down.

2) Remember EVERY BOOK has good and bad reviews.

I’ve had epic reviews where the reader said I’m their new favorite author and I’ve had reviews that said Other Systems was boring. Who is right? They both are. A review is an opinion. And everyone is entitled to their opinion especially since I asked them for it!

3) Remember EVERY AUTHOR has a budget for PR.

Some budgets are bigger than mine. I can’t control that. I can control how I spend my own money and remember that just because this book didn’t do as well as I like, doesn’t mean that the next book won’t.

Now here’s where it gets personal….

If I had been afraid to go through this gate, I would have missed one of the most beautiful and interesting gardens in all of IrelanD!

If I had been afraid to go through this gate, I would have missed one of the most beautiful and interesting gardens in all of Ireland! So Be FEARLESS!

4) Don’t be afraid to write what you want to write

I write what I want to write and have basically told people to fuck off if they tell me to write something else. (Depending on the relationship with the person, this will be a gentle or harsh.)

No, I don’t write about YA vampires nor do I write spanking fantasies about women being dominated by billionaires.To be clear, I am not dissing any author who writes about such things as long as they are writing about these subjects because they want to. 

I am saying If I wrote such a story, it would be shit. Know why? Because I don’t care about that. I don’t even care about the Hunger Games wannabe dystopia stories though they are closer to what I write. Not because these subjects are better or worse than what I write, but because I would be a poser and no one likes a poser.

I write serious hard science and hard social science fiction. My inspirations are Margret Atwood, Vernor Vingeand David Brin

Sometimes I also write horror or epic fantasy. My inspirations are Stephen King, Joe Hill, and Tanya Huff.

These are the authors I read for pleasure. Notice something about the authors I listed, they have two things in common. They are authors who write for adults. and no matter what the setting deal with real life issues in their writing.

No one makes me write this. It’s a tough road, but a road that I put myself on willingly.  I really don’t care what other people think I should write. I’m living the dream–and so can you–just remember every great dream has a bit of a nightmare.

5) Go your own pace.

It will feel that everyone is moving faster than you. They are releasing ten books a year while you’re struggling with writer’s block. I once let a publishing contract pass me by. It hurts when I think about it sometime, but I know I did the right thing for me. I nor my project would have been what the press wanted from me.

6) When it gets too hard, reach out for help. 

I think most authors want to help. I love helping. Hell, even if I can only give you a hug (real or metaphorical) and pass you along to some one more qualified, I will do that. And if you  happen to run into jerks, write them off, and come over to my side of the inter-webs.


7) Five Words: I am a fucking author. (And if you need them add another seven…Nothing can take that away from me.)

I wrote a hard science fiction novel and it was published. I wrote, created artwork and self published 4 graphic novels and a comic book series. I have had a few short stories published. This is where I am in my career. It has taken me eight years to get this far and I’m not stopping.

No one can take that away from me…not even death. I might not be remembered, I can’t control that, but I used the time I have in a way that I feel is worthwhile.

IMG_2058

Here is me at Norwescon’s Writer’s Row last year.

If you wrote a book or a short story or a blog post you are an author. You created something out of nothing. Be proud of that.

Plus one extra tip for no charge: Figure out what  gets your hackles up, and do your best to ignore it.

America loves an instant Success story and a get rich quick scheme. Right now, that’s publishing an e-book on Kindle.

Being an author is work. No one just poops out novels or trips over a publishing contract. My pet peeve is every bio from a best-selling author that starts with “I never thought I’d be an author…. ” I’m calling out bullshit on that. Then I stop reading and go about my merry way.

So Authors Friends, what helps you?

Another Science Fiction Story on WattPad — Love in the World of Make-believe

So here is another free Short Story. Love in the World of Make Believe
makebelieve Sarae has grown up with wearable hologram technology. She feels that not seeing reality is the barrier to her happiness–specifically why she has never been in love.

After reading, feel free to comment upon any part of the story. (Including the R Rating. While there is no descriptive sex or casual swearing, I gave it an R rating for adult themes. If you feel I rated it too harshly let me know.)

Still deciding if you want to read it? Here’s a teaser:

Mornings had become a perverse game of looking at her true self in the mirror, before she turned on her hologram. No wrinkles yet, but Sarae felt them just under her skin. She felt old at forty—not even a quarter through her expected life span as a non-smoking, social drinking American who exercised and tried to stay away from sugars.

Sarae caught a wiff of the automatic coffee maker as she slipped into the shower and scrubbed off the sweat from her mind-numbing hour on the treadmill. By the time she got out; she heard the message that her breakfast was ready…

 

Read the rest here!

 

Where were you on 9/11?

While I asked this on Facebook too, I think I’m going to change gears today and ask a question unrelated to writing. Where were you on 9/11? Did it change the way you look at the world?

(Even If you aren’t from the States or just a kid or ?, please still feel free to answer this question if 9/11 effected you. And please everyone remain civil.)

My answer is very domestic. I was getting my carpet cleaned.

My husband, had just left for work, called and asked me to look at the news because all he heard was a little snippet about the borders had closed. The carpet cleaner didn’t realize it was an attack yet. He had just heard of a terrible accident in NY–but they don’t close borders for accidents–so I turned on the news. This stranger and I watched the it unfold as he cleaned my carpets. He left. I spent the rest of the day, drawing or writing with the TV on, listening for new information, but much of it was repeating. Dennis came home.

While, it did not change how I looked at the world, the event gave me insight to the fact not everyone loves Americans. Still young and idealistic, I hoped it would open up an international dialogue to change the world for the better. (Seriosuly, I had only ever heard of a Jihad because of Dune) A friend told me that the American response would be an automatic war. History proved him correct.

New Story on WattPad : First Contact…

Want to read a free short story? Head over to WattPad and check out http://www.wattpad.com/67860933-first-contact

Not convinced? Need a teaser?

The soft glow of the television lit the darkened living room. Mark lifted his furry head towards the window and growled. Then he jumped from the couch, spun around, and made a higher yap.

Cover Illustration for First Contact

Cover Illustration for First Contact.

“Quiet,” Erin said, readjusting the blanket to cover her feet. Trying to decide whether to finish the movie or go to bed, she wasn’t paying attention to Invasion of the Body Snatchers though its familiar dialogue soothed her and dulled the sound of traffic outside.

Mark’s barking continued. Erin gently put her fingers upon her dog’s head. Though he quieted, a low growl continued to sound in his throat. She glanced at her phone. 11:47.

It’s Tuesday night, people.

Expecting to see her neighbors smoking pot and drinking on the back patio, she pushed back her blinds and readied herself for the coming conflict. Instead of her neighbors, a bald whitish face with large black eyes peered back at her. A three-fingered hand waved. His/her/hir/its’ lips curled upward showing pointed teeth…. 

Want to read more? Please go to  http://www.wattpad.com/67860933-first-contact

And if you like it, give it some love. :)

The Light Side of the Moon Artwork and Teaser

Since I know everyone has been waiting patiently to hear word, but I don’t have word yet, who wants a teaser for

The Light Side of the Moon?

3062

Due to overpopulation, lack of natural resources, and a surplus of political bickering, Earth is a cesspool. In Other Systems, human colonists from Kipos transported 750,000 Earthlings to inhabit their utopian planet ninety-four light years away. The Light Side of the Moon explores what happens on Earth.

Brimming with hope amid intense uncertainty and physical hardships, eleven-year-old Ella follows rumors of plentiful jobs on the moon. On roads fraught with danger, she discovers Earth is a bigger place than she ever knew. 

Lunar Colony Serenitatis as little more than a prison colony. Ella forges unlikely friendships with corrupted androids and the idealistic prison doctor, Ian Whitlatch, who champions equality and rights for inmates. She aspires to build something that the population of Earth and Luna hasn’t seen in centuries: a public school.

 

Part 1: And the Kiposians came…

Chapter 1

June 1, 3062

Spiraling, interlocked rings of ejected matter danced to a song the android could hear on the edge of her mind. Faint halos of dust extended into space from NGC 6543, also known as the Cat’s Eye Nebula. Their rhythm matched the beat of her automated heart. Harmonic knots filled her with joy.

lighted earth1

Part 1: Illustration

A pulse invaded the android’s reverie. Radio waves assaulted her audio membranes. Garbled noise awoke her consciousness, transporting her sentience back to Earth. Background noise grew into static. She lowered the current signal, pinching off sounds. Blasts of an indistinguishable din became overlapping languages. The android sought out her native French and found “Frères et sœurs.” Brothers and sisters

She teased out more words until the message was complete. Brothers and sisters, we come in peace and in need. We have found our way home.

“The lost androids returned?” she spoke aloud. “It must be them!” All androids referred to each other as brother, sister, or sibling—whether or not they had the same programmer.

She zoomed her optics from the nebula to Earth. Her enlargement algorithms resized the sky as she flipped her crafted compound lens to a smaller setting to allow in less light. Her world was millions of pixels shifting colors. Images smoothed. She could see.

*

 

The Light Side of the Moon Research Topics

lunaThe Light Side of the Moon rewrite took a lot out of me. Not only did I feel like I was able to make the characters more lifelike, I did more research in order to make the story sing with science and facts. Or at least so I don’t sound like an idiot. I’ve written before about how I believe in specific directed research.

This is some of the topics I researched for The Light Side of the Moon and some of the books and links I used:

 

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