August update

Hi everyone! I hope ya’ll are doing alright. Can you believe it’s already August? The year sure is flying by–or is it crawling at a snail’s pace? I suppose it depends on your perspective.

Well, not much to report this month. Had a stay-cation where I spent some time visiting with family and getting some much needed R&R from the day job. I’ll tell ya–usually working from home has its perks, but I’ve been working non–stop the whole darn day since the middle of March. I’ve ended up working harder from my kitchen table then I did when I was in the office. Isn’t that the darnedest thing? So anyway, a week away was exactly what I needed. I even went up to the coast for a day before a hurricane hit. Missed it by a few days!

So, onto a book 2 update. It’s going a little slow, but I’m still planning to wrap it up by end of year. Then it’ll be on to the editing process. To be honest–it’s looking like book 2 is going to be a bit longer than book 1. I can feel it just from the writing and the progress of where the plot is at this point. Good news is I know exactly where I want to end the story. Bad news is there are a lot of words needed before I get there.

Other than that, not much to report this month. Still staying home and being careful. I know things are still not back to normal as much as some folks say otherwise. At this point I’m avoiding all to the stories about people who don’t want to wear masks, or follow CDC guidelines, or the plans to send the kids back to school. My only hope is that everyone stays safe.

That’s all from me. Ya’ll take care.

Another COVID post…

Another month has crawled by and it seems as if things are getting worse around the country in regards to Covid. Especially in Texas which has become a hotspot–the hospitals are filling up and things are getting bad. The media is reporting that we opened too early–and perhaps we did–but I think what hurt us the most was the disregard for social distancing and wearing masks. There are so many people that just don’t care and they don’t believe in how serious the virus is. Personally, I’m just exhausted at dealing with them–their lack of respect for human life is frustrating and galling.

Even with the new Executive Order requiring face coverings–these people complain. They complain as if wearing a mask is taking away their right for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. The pursuit of happiness! Yeah, chew on that. A mask is keeping these people from living out their daily lives. It’s a minor inconvenience at most. And to make matters worse–they’re looking for loopholes around following the Executive Order. They have “medical issues”. The mask is suffocating, or it makes them breathe excessive amounts of carbon monoxide.

Yeah, I can’t make this stuff up.

Personally, I’ve been shut–in for the last few weeks. My family had a Covid scare a few weeks ago, and now we’re being extra careful. Nothing drives how serious this virus is until you are staring face to face with the possibility of actual exposure. It’s a rather sobering experience performing a contact tracing exercise on your own family. It’s an exercise I would rather not do again.

So, now you must be wondering: am I fearful of the virus? Am I stopping living my life because I’m afraid of getting sick of a virus that kills less than 1 percent of infected? To answer honestly–I’m cautious of the virus. I don’t want to get infected and then get someone else sick who is high risk. If that means staying away from high risk activities then that’s what I’ll do.

I’ll wear my mask. I’ll keep up with social distancing. I’ll keep my head up and stay safe.

I hope ya’ll do, too.

Jiu Jitsu and all its suckage

It’s been an age since I’ve written about jiu jitsu. Could be because attending class has been a bit hit or miss the last few months. Anyway, yesterday I had the hardest time finishing a roll because some dude’s feet smelled so bad. And I mean bad. So bad, like, the smell was on the mat and on my gi. It just stuck to everything.

Disgusting right?

Well, they really don’t tell you about what you’ll go through when you first join jiu jitsu. You just sort of learn as you go, and if it doesn’t scare you off, then you stick around and just deal with the suck.

And there’s a lot of suck.

I’ve had sweat drip in my eye and my mouth. I’ve finished rolling and was drenched with other people’s sweat all over my gi.

I’ve smelled so rank that I couldn’t wait to get home to wash, and literally splashed water over my upper body, shirt and all, to try to wash the smell off.

These are the things you go through when you’re in jiu jitsu.

These are the things I tell my friends who aren’t in jiu jitsu. Who are grossed out, and suggest I try something else for exercise. Because why? Why would anyone put themselves through it? To be all up in another person’s sweaty, smelly space?

Of course, they don’t understand–even though there are times when it sucks, the reward is worth it.

When you finally nail that arm bar you’d been wrestling so hard to get. Or pulling off the kimura, omaplata, or triangle. Or hell, just surviving seven minutes without getting choked out is an accomplishment in and of itself.

So, no. I won’t quit jiu jitsu and join taekwondo.

I’m good just where I’m at.

It’s almost time…

Well. It’s finally here–the month of my book’s release. I’ve prepared as much as I can so now I’ve just gotta wait and see. I’ve had lots of support from my family as well as friends, so at this point, I’m just happy that it’s going to be out there for people to love or hate.

And, I’m happy to say, that I’m not worried about the reception. I thought I would be. But nope. Maybe because I have been keeping myself sufficiently busy–at the moment I’m in Little Rock for training for the day job. When I’m not filling my head with IT stuff, I’m listening to Radiohead’s OK Computer over and over (Track 5 is on repeat!) while writing away in my hotel room. I’m hoping to get a large dent in for book 2 or at the very least, bang out that novella.

I’m also hoping all the writing will make the days go quicker. I’m missing home something crazy. Hotel rooms are for the birds. I want my own bed and my own pillow and blanket. And I already know what I’m going to eat after my plane lands on Friday. It starts with ‘T’ and ends with… oh, hell. It’s TACOS. TACOS PEOPLE.

On a side note: it just so happens that August is also my little brother’s birthday month. So, I’m just giving him my book for his birthday. No other gift. Just the book. So, there you go little brother! May you enjoy it. Happy Birthday to you! And Happy Birthday to all the other Leos, too! I give you my ART! Here’s an honest review of Dark Sun Rising just so you know what you’re in for.

Well, that’s all from me. See ya’ll.

Dark Sun Rising available for pre-order!

Hello Everyone!

So good news. The Dark Sun Rising eBook is now available for pre-order. Get it for $0.99 on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and iBooks. The paperback is also available for pre-order through Barnes & Noble.

I thought you guys may want a sample, so I’ve uploaded the first chapter as well under the My Books section. Check it out!

Also, if there are any book bloggers interested, please message me and I will send you a free ebook copy for your review.

Happy reading!

Dark Sun Rising Cover Poll

Hi Everyone!

So good news. I finally received the drafts for the potential covers for the novel. As I mentioned before: I would like you all’s input on which cover is better.

Click here to vote for the best cover.

And always, let me know what you think!

Writing pains…

Hello people! How’s everyone doing? Good I hope. I’ll have ya’ll know–Texas is weird. The weather, that is. One day it’s in the 30s and the next it’s 80 degrees. It’s enough to give a lady whiplash–I never know if I need to wear a winter coat or not.

In other news, I’m slowly chipping away at the novella. I re-read a few pages this weekend and I know that I’m going to need to do some extensive edits when I’m done. It just needs to be tighter structure wise. And I’m the sort that hates editing. Like really, really hate it. But it has to be done. “Kill your darlings” and all that. Sometimes I feel like I need to kill the whole thing, but that’s when it’s time to maybe write about something else. Take my mind off of the story for a bit and let it rest.

Other times it takes all my will power to sit down and work on a story. With all the other things going on in life writing is the last thing I feel like doing. And I suppose that’s exactly the time I should be writing. When it’s hard.

But the more I do this, the more I wonder how some writers are able to crank out several books a year. I don’t think I’ll ever be one of those writers. I take too long to get things done, and when I am done, I take even longer with the editing process. And I have a buddy that reads my stuff and helps me out with content. She takes a little while to get back to me as well. So all around, my process is sloooooow.

But I guess in the end it doesn’t matter how slow or fast you are, as long as you write the best story you can.

Book, TV, and Movie Things

Hi Everyone! I hope your February is going well. Mine is going pretty good!

So mini update on Dark Sun Rising– I’m now working on getting the book formatted and also contracting for cover design. All in all, it’s pretty much on schedule for the August release. I’m thinking the closer I get to the release date, the more excited I’m going to get to share it with ya’ll. I’m hoping ya’ll enjoy it.

In other writing news, the novella is still in progress, and I’m having lots of fun writing it. It’s a completely different story then the novel, but still very much in the fantasy genre.

So when I’m not writing the novella or preparing for the release of the novel, you know I’m watching TV and movies!

Right now, I’m spending time watching one of the best comedies on TV: One Day at a Time. If you haven’t checked out this show, you really need to. It centers on a Cuban family and tackles all sorts of issues including: immigration, sexism, homophobia, racism, and mental illness. It all sounds serious, yes? But the show has a knack for focusing on all these issues tastefully and with a large dose of humor. It also has Rita Moreno who is amazing! I don’t think there is a character on TV that comes close to her Lydia. She’ll have you laughing ’till your stomach hurts.

Oh! And also, I saw Alita: Battle Angel, and I know it’s getting bad reviews and everything, but I enjoyed it. Yes the story is a bit hammy, and moves soooo quickly, but you know what? I didn’t care. Because it was entertaining and the plot was still interesting and fun, and the effects were excellent! So yeah, I think you should check it out if you’re into fantasy movies. I think you’ll like it.

Well, that’s about it from me this week. Until next time!

Choosing to self-publish

When I decided to self-publish my novel I had no idea how much effort it would take. First, I decided early on that I would put out a book that was comparable to something a publishing house would distribute. That meant a professional editor, proofreader, and book cover artist. Also, other expenses as well that popped up depending on my personal preference that not every self-published author chooses to pay for, such as purchasing an ISBN, Copyright, etc.

Second, which is the largest effort other than writing the book itself, is the marketing. This includes self-promoting my book. For me, this will be the biggest learning experience since I have very little experience with marketing, and to be honest–I really don’t want to shell out the cash to hire a professional. So I’ve decided to keep things simple: I created this website to grow my readership, and to keep those that are interested up-to-date with everything going on with me. I’ve linked it to other social media like Facebook and Twitter so that my posts are displayed on those sites as well.

I’ve also decided to send my book off to get reviewed by bloggers a few months before its release.  I’m planning a budget to pay for a few promotions when the book releases to urge a successful book launch. And I’m hoping to have a few book giveaways as well.

So that’s pretty much my plan. We’ll see how it goes.

 

Writing through the holidays

Writing is hard. I’m in the middle of writing book two and it hasn’t progressed as far as I would hope. But I suppose it’s to be expected. Interest wanes for me, especially this time of year when I have the holidays to distract me. Every weekend is pretty much something festive to do with the family. Whether its decorating, baking cookies, putting up the Christmas tree–it’s pretty much all the things I want to do that take priority over writing.

That’s not to say I don’t try. I certainly do, I just don’t get much done. Maybe a few pages here and there. And my attention is a bit divided so that when I reread the copy I don’t remember it all. That ever happen to you? You reread something and you have no recollection of writing it in the first place? That’s where I am right now. I re-read a chapter and thought: “Damn, who wrote this? They sure are good!”

Okay, that only happens sometimes. And when it does happen I spend a lot of time laughing at myself. Because I’m just a jolly person. And that’s what this time of year is about, right?

Of course it is.

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