Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter, April Fools

Gotta tell ya, I loves me some Spring! Been sitting, working on a book since about last Thanksgiving without getting out. So yesterday I escaped into the dazzling sunlight, and we even got to Newburyport, Mass. Had never been there, and wanted some quaint oceanside town, and we got it. Lovely place, little shops, and stuff to see.

Now it was only about 50 degrees, not Summer by a long stretch, but some people were wearing shorts and T-shirts.
How can you walk around like that without shivering and going numb?

I felt like the Grumpy Old Man who wanted to say "Get some clothes on, ya morons!"

But hey, whatever floats your boat...

We welcome Spring. Am tired of foot-high snowfalls every week.

So enjoy your Easter, and watch out tomorrow for pranksters!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Irony and Comment

Ironic story seen today. On The Passive Guy site, a great place for publishing news and links, had a story about a former opponent of self-publishing who finally got tired of the gatekeeper game a couple of weeks ago.

He got a cover, formatted his book, and posted it for sale. Guess what? It's become a breakaway hit, and he's making sales and money hand-over-fist.

Boy, he's sure changed his tune!

And as a companion piece, read the excellent post by Kristine Kathryn Rusch- The Logic Behind Self Publishing.

Information like this is why I laugh when some folks spout off that the only real way to succeed in writing is to have a big publisher do it all for you.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Big Weekend

This weekend was the big meet and greet for the New England chapter of Sisters in Crime. They had get-togethers at various places around the area.

Saturday, I was up in Amesbury, Mass., reading Chapter 1 of my newest Zack Taylor novel, A Shadow on the Wall (in production at the publisher). A number of other authors read, and the talent level was superb.

Today I went to the New England Mobile Book Fair for another reading and meeting. Bigger group, also a lot of talented writers.

And one of them, a writer currently on the NY Times best-seller list, said that the chapter I'd read was very good, and grabbed the reader's interest. How about that?

Busy weekend! On to Easter!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Sisters In Crime Reading

This weekend is the big meet and greet for the New England chapter of Sisters in Crime. They'll be having get-togethers at various places around the area.

Today, I'll be up in Amesbury, Mass., reading Chapter 1 of my newest Zack Taylor novel, A Shadow on the Wall (in production at the publisher). And I should hear portions of the work of others.

Tomorrow, we'll be at the New England Mobile Book Fair for another reading and meeting.

Busy weekend! Hope you're enjoying your first Spring weekend.

Thursday, March 21, 2013


Now, I'm not a fan of only putting out an ebook through an exclusive channel- hey, everyone should be able to get it on all platforms and formats.

However, many writers have been touting the KDP Select program of Amazon, where your ebook is available only through them. They get a lot of people checking it out.

So I'm trying it, with a first-time 10-story ebook collection, combining two previous 5-story collections. It's been out in print (I gave a copy to Stephen King when he came to speak at UMass Lowell), but now you can get it on your Kindle.

Best part-- if you have Amazon Prime, you can borrow the book for free!

Sunday, March 17, 2013


Well, yes, it's St. Patrick's Day, and that's cause enough to celebrate, but there's more.

I've finished the edits on A Shadow on the Wall, the third Zack Taylor novel.

I've been working on the edits to this since November, trying to make it absolutely spectacular. Thanks be to my editors, who labored to call me on every bit of writing that wouldn't work as top-notch.

I told my daughter it was like writing a 300-page term paper, which could be graded by every English professor on the planet.

So- on to celebration, and then other projects!

Like getting Halls of Horror into the Kindle Daily Select program. My first time with them- let's see how it goes.

It's like being a superhero-- the fight never ends. But you cherish the victories, and keep going.

Erin go bragh!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Happy Birthday

Hey, I share a birthday today with Doug Adams, author of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
He was born just five years before me, but passed away a dozen years ago. What a terrible loss.

THGttG, in fact the whole series, is a seminal work for geeks. If you haven't read it, you're missing out on a tremendous cultural touchstone, and you won't know the answer to everything, or why you should always have a towel.

Would that I could create a work so beloved and so meaningful to so many.

Rest in Peace, dear writer, and thank you for your work.


Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Judgment Days

It was a busy few days. First I served as judge for a High School speech competition on Saturday, spending many hours watching about 30 different kids do their talks in 5 different categories.

And along with suggestions for improvements, I had to be nice... so it was tough.
Just kidding- it was great-- these kids are well-spoken, polite, and communicate well. Not like teenagers at all!

And then this last Monday, I was in Nashua to judge the Flash Fiction Regional Competition, sponsored by the New Hampshire Writer's Project.

We had a number of contestants read original stories in three minutes or less.
The quality was great, and it was a good time, quite well attended.
I received good feedback on my feedback to the readers. Many said it helped them to clarify what could be improved in their story.

Thanks to everyone who came, including some I conned into attending, who all lied and said they had a good time.