It’s been a wild year for us all. I have been unemployed since March because of COVID-19 (with the expectation that my job with the Census Bureau will return to operation in August). We left another apartment, due to finances and being harassed/threatened. I’ve removed most of my releases from purchase as they undergo fresh revisions. Laying it out this way doesn’t sound so bad, but my anxiety has brought me to my knees quite a few times in the last few months. It would be nice for things to start getting better.
I have posted a couple updates since COVID-19, but it feels like there’s enough to discuss for another go. Below, I will let you all about the reissues coming along, what other books are in writing, the new way I’ll be doing e-books, and more. I’ve divided everything into sections for your convenience.
TWENTY SERIES – The only reason I bring this one up again is because I have still been seeing readers refer to my recent releases (“Pray,” “Squirming Disease,” “Tenebris”) as being part of the Twenty series I launched at the start of the year (despite having cancelled it some months ago). As you may remember, I originally started 2020 with the idea that there would be a new release every month of the year. Even though that has happened for the most part so far (at least up until June), I ditched that idea for a variety of reasons. One, the world was falling apart, as was my house – I didn’t know what I would be able to handle as the year progressed. Two, I knew back then that I wanted to reissue my collections at least, and that would take some time to do. So, no, the Twenty series isn’t a thing anymore. My next collection released will not share that title, nor will it release at the end of 2020 as initially planned. My next collection isn’t expected until 2021 sometime. A lot has already been written for it, but I still have a lot more to go. I’m also approaching new releases differently, which takes more time than it used to. We will go until that further in a bit.
“PRAY” AND “SQUIRMING DISEASE” / PHYSICAL FORMATS VS. DIGITAL – The e-book versions of “Pray” and “Squirming Disease” should be reissued very soon (mid July), but what’s really cool is both stories are also coming to paperback with additional stories. Now that I’m learning the new Lulu system for publishing, I’ve been teaching myself how to do professional wrap-around covers. The proof prints I’ve done in the past month have looked so much better than what I was doing in the past. So, not only will the paperbacks look awesome on your shelf, they will also have new content not found in the digital editions. For example, “Pray” features three new stories, as well as the first episode of my upcoming screenplay series, Charters. Both of these novelettes have been proof printed and are set to arrive at my house this week for approval. If all looks good, I am currently planning a September release for both paperbacks (seeing as they’ve already been out prior to this).
DIGITAL REISSUES OF SHORT STORIES – Read this post for the details as to why I’m reissuing everything. Then read this: Digital stories being reissued – like “Wild Minds” – will publish in all major online retailers, but not for free as I’d originally planned. This week, I learned that my publisher has removed that option from their e-books. As a result, I will make the reissued shorts – “Wild Minds,” “Out at Sea,” and “Tenebris” – available from my website for download. Of course, you can also pay a dollar for them elsewhere if you want, but I’d like to give these few away for free. The revisions have been completed on all of these, but I need to finish formatting the e-books for “Out at Sea” and “Tenebris” still. I expect them to be done in the next week or so. “Wild Minds” is already available on Lulu, and is in the process of being distributed elsewhere. You can download that one on my website today right here.
DIGITAL REISSUES OF COLLECTIONS AND NOVELETTES – Again, read this post for the details as to why I’m reissuing everything. Then read this: My collections – Dead as Soon as Born, Kill for Them, and Horrific Holidays – are all expected to release digitally and physically during the last quarter of 2020. Dead as Soon as Born is just about to enter the formatting and printing stage. I hope to have the digital of this collection available in August, after its exclusive KDP run has completed with Amazon. Kill for Them is about to enter the editing process, which should take all of July. Then, in August, formatting and printing will begin. I hope to release the digital of this one in mid-September, after its KDP exclusivity has ended. Horrific Holidays won’t start edits until August. It also has a new novelette being written for it. As a result, the digital of this probably won’t be available until October. That’s mostly a guess at this time. Both “Pray” and “Squirming Disease” should arrive in digital sometime in the middle of July, before their paperbacks.
PHYSICAL REISSUES – As previously mentioned, the expanded paperbacks of “Pray” and “Squirming Disease” are scheduled for September release. Both Dead as Soon as Born and Kill for Them are expected in October. Horrific Holidays is shooting for November. This is because December was originally slated for Charters – but that title may be pushed into 2021 for promotional reasons. We’ll talk more about that soon.
MISSING RELEASES ONLINE – Because of the reissues, most of my books have disappeared from purchase online. That’s because production has stopped on them. I’m sorry if you were about to snag a copy to read, but I assure you the reissues will be better and worth the few months wait. In the meantime, you have my permission to ask a friend with my books to give you a copy (digitally or physically) if they so desire. I just don’t want to offer what I now consider to be “incomplete” editions, seeing as they’ve now undergone wonderful revisions to make them better.
CHARTERS, A SCREENPLAY SERIES – I’ve mentioned this one here and there a few times already. This screenplay series (ten episodes designed for quality streaming services, such as HBO or Netflix) was written between 2017 and 2018. It has been sitting on my shelf for a while, because I thought it would be turned into a novel instead. However, the screenplay alone is 600 pages approximately. That would make a novel of 800-1100 pages, by my estimate. I don’t think anyone would read it at that length. I need to gain a lot more popularity first. One day, I hope the demand will be there, because I purposefully skipped events in the screenplay in favor of them being new to the novel adaptation. Anyway, Charters is about Gina Charter, a character you’ve seen elsewhere more than once. This is her backstory, and it’s gritty and emotional. It’s a story I’ve wanted people to know since I first created the character eight years ago. Originally, I was going to put this out in December, but revising and formatting it will take too long, I think. This is because of the reissues I am now doing, that were originally not part of the equation. I want to give Charters a little promotional space prior to its release, so there’s a chance it may become an early 2021 release instead. I will speak more about this “promotional space” in the section addressing changes to my way of releasing titles.
UPCOMING SHORT STORIES AND WEBSITE PREMIERS – I put a new short online at the start of this month, called “Following the Dead Tracks.” Next week, another will premier, called “Peck.” Originally, these were going to follow in the footsteps of “Out at Sea” and “Tenebris,” and simply release as e-books prior to later appearing in a collection. However, I have decided to change that up a bit. I want to utilize my website more, so new story premiers will come a few times a year. These stories that post will be available for a month or so on my website, and then be removed. Some of those shorts will then be turned into digitals you can download directly through my website for free (I know how to make the .epub and .mobi files without having to publish them on a platform). This solves the issue of not being able to make them free through Amazon and other retailers. While, yes, “Wild Minds,” “Out at Sea,” and “Tenebris” will still return to Amazon (where they had been previously listed), most other shorts I release moving forward will be done this way instead. If they are longer – like a novelette length, for example – then they will probably release via all retailers. Eventually, they will also appear in a future collection. So, “Following the Dead Tracks” will be a free e-book download on my site next week, following the premier of “Peck.” “Peck” will then be the premier for July, and be made into a download in August. These free e-books can be found on this page. At this time, you can find “Wild Minds” there. “Out at Sea” and “Tenebris” will appear soon, as well (though also be made available through all major online retailers). All my short stories will have Goodreads listings, so please review any you read to help promote my work.
NEW EDITOR TEAM – About a month ago or so, I posted a call-out for dedicated readers who wanted to act as editors. I had several responses, one of whom has taken the job as my new Lead Editor. Welcome Julia Lewis to the AM Fiction team! In just the past month alone, she has revised a handful of short stories, as well as all of Dead as Soon as Born (which is beyond 300 pages in length). If not for her, these reissues would have taken twice as long. She is making the process so much easier, and I am very grateful to have her. She is doing a great job!
NEW WAY OF RELEASING THINGS – In the past, I basically released things as I had them ready. A lot of the time, this meant I was sending out ARCs for something you could already buy. I think the most promotional space I’ve given was a month or so. I’m going to try changing that following these reissues. Charters will probably be the first new release to get the new treatment, which will be this: I want to have at least two months (or more) of promotional time prior to a release. This space will be used for sending out ARCs. Most will be digital still, because I’m terribly broke and already having problems supporting my family; but, I am also hoping to try sending out more paperbacks than I have in the past, come 2021. They will be for USA addresses, though, and be reserved for my beta readers, editors, and readers will strong traffic in views and interactions with other readers in the community (due to costs in printing and shipping).
That about does it for now. I think three pages is a long enough update, don’t you? Check back weekly for new content (such as reviews, premiers, and downloads), and follow me on Instagram for the most frequent posting. I am also on Twitter, but not really using it anymore. I’ve deleted the app and am avoiding it for the time being. Anything you see me post there is most likely done through a “share” button elsewhere.
Thanks for reading!