It is September and, even though the equinox hasn’t come quite yet, it sure feels like autumn in Ohio. The leaves outside this window are turning yellow even now! Seems too early for it, but I’ll certainly take the low-70s temperatures we’re getting.
(And for those bracing for hurricane weather, be smart, be strong, and be safe!)
It seems like I had plenty to write about off and on over the last few weeks, but blogging and idle chit-chat just don’t have a lot of weight when I’m trying to decide what to spend my limited time on, you know?
My wife and I went to the movies and saw Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, and I felt compelled to write about that.
(...Such as how it's basically a 2.5-hour nostalgia piece with no actual storyline. What the hell was Margot Robbie even in the movie for? All she did was go watch her own movie! So if you aren’t that into Hollywood or the 60s, save your damn money.)
I’m finishing up reading a SF trilogy, which I started last year, off and on. I’ve started three other books I am not likely to finish because they just don’t keep me interested. After not really being into comics for decades, I’m actually following a current limited series on the X-Men and could talk about those, and more reading material besides.
The new desk and chair that I bought last week and have yet to assemble for my new basement writing room. I plan to shoot pictures of the new storage room with the simple desk versus my very busy and messy office and discuss the difference and why I’m doing this. (Fascinating, I know...)
The new upside-down that is our family life right now with my wife going back to school in the evenings. (Thus even less time for blogging and writing and such.)
The next IDCU-SF-WWII novel I’ve finally come back to (lots of acronyms there), which I hope (hope!) to have out by Christmas (but that seems kind of unlikely, since I currently spend more time grading papers than writing them).
And probably a dozen other things I could offer my unsolicited opinion on.
But if I’m blogging or emailing out my personal opinions or mundane adventures in day-to-day life, then who the hell is making dinner for my son? Grading all those papers for my students? Who is going to write my books???
I envy bloggers who have the time for that stuff. And I hear (this is me, the crusty old luddite) that there are people who make a living at blogging??? Whhaaaahhh???!!! Who pays them???
Of course, I’m not totally convinced anyone makes a living at writing book yet either. But supposedly that’s a thing...
Anyway, maybe someday in the near future I’ll get around to telling you about some of those things. (Especially the books I’m reading. Or you could tell me about the books you’re reading. Feel free to email me!) But for now, I have too much else to do to blog/email out those day-to-day trivialities.
Which leaves me with mostly self-promoting stuff to talk about, which believe it or not, I also get very tired of! I’m not one to talk about myself. But I guess if I don’t tell people about my writing projects, no one will.
I do have an awesome new cover design for one of my Identity Crisis Universe (IDCU) books. Invasion has needed to get with the program for a while now in order to fit in with the new look on the other series in that universe. And now it has--in spades!
Artist Henry Ponciano (https://www.deviantart.com/henryponciano) made the first Invasion cover for me years ago.
I had a vision of art deco stuff from the 1920s then, and ideas for all three covers for this eventual trilogy. (Invasion started out as a short story idea that wrote itself into a short novel, which easily lends itself to becoming a trilogy. Go figure.) This first cover, then, was to resemble the Statue of Liberty. Future ones would be take-aways from King Kong and that famous Atlas statue of him bearing a huge globe. It seemed like a good idea at the time, but I think I am probably the only person who would get it...
But now to get with the times and kick a lot more ass, here’s the newest version! (I hope Henry doesn't mind me sharing his prelim sketches above.) He remade Ballista and her spider prey here and I did the rest of the cover. What do you think?
I freakin’ love it. Although I have had rough negotiations with Amazon these past few days in submitting the paperback version for printing approval. They don’t like the interaction with the titles and author name because they worry it could be mistaken for printing errors that they’d have to refund customers over... (Lame!)
But, hey, they print the books and have all the power, so what can I do? So if you happen to order a paperback, it won’t look quite as cool. Sorry.
(BTW, there's also an awesome audio version on Amazon, Audible, and iBooks! I like it better than the readable version--the voice artists are amazing!)
Okay, I have to wrap this up and go pick up my son from after-school daycare. (I’m writing this Thursday afternoon and hopefully I’ll get it out Friday sometime.) If you’re still reading this far, THANKS for doing so and I’ll be in touch later in the month or possibly October. After all, I should be writing the next novel, not telling you about my overly busy yet somehow not productive enough day. But if I get the time, I would like to tell you about these books I’m reading someday soon!
Happy September and enjoy your weekend!
The time has finally come to launch this thing!
Do you like scary stories? How about urban fantasy but, like, the dark side of urban fantasy...?
I recently revamped three books. “Revamped” as in, bit them, watched them die, and then brought them back with a creepy, night-colored luster!
Here’s the short version:
The Grit & Shadows Collection: J. D. Brink’s series of urban fantasy, crime noir, vampire horror, and more. They feature wise guys and private eyes, black magic and bleak futures, your deepest desires and the road to damnation.
Right now the whole trilogy of books is on sale for $1, $2, and $3. Book 1 is a buck, Book 2 is 2 dollars... you get the idea. I call it the “1-2-3 sale.”
But it’s only on for a few more days! Sunday all three go back to their normal prices.
Follow these links to check them out and see what you think. And if you take a fancy, grab all three for only six bucks! (Or your currency equivalent, if you’re not in the US.)
A popular blogger, writers, and and prolific reader--whose title is no less than Planetary Defense Commander, so you know he's important!--recently posted a review of my collection GEM. And the review is excellent! It made my weekend, for sure.
You can read his comments on his own blog by clicking here.
We all judge books by their covers, all the time. And not just books. People, obviously, more often than we should. And beverages.
Look at these cool labels on this wine and IPA bottle I bought. And I barely even drink! But damn if the images and designs didn’t sell them to me!
It’ll take me weeks, probably, to drink a bottle of red wine and a four-pack of this imperial IPA. Maybe longer. But I can tell you, they taste pretty darn good!
Well, maybe not too many weeks. I’m actually on vacation this week, which is a good time to enjoy sipping on a beverage here and there.
I should say I was on vacation. Shit, it’s Sunday already! My vacation’s over!
Pass that bottle back over here...
I have been pretty productive this week, though. Aside from accomplishing many of the tasks I set out for myself so far, I also made time to visit with friends and to simply relax, which are probably even more important for me. I don’t do either of those things often enough.
Didn’t get that Father’s Day grill put together though, yet. Or go through that trunk full of old paperwork that needs to be sorted and/or shredded/burned.
But I have accomplished some fun book cover work over the past couple days. See what you think:
This is probably not the final draft for this image, and it isn’t for one particular book. It’s for a series of books that I’m rebranding right now. All three have been out before, but I’m adding some more stories to one book and shuffling the three of them together into a series. I’ve been calling the whole genre of these works my “grit & shadows” stuff for a long time. Now I’m finally going to make that official.
And once I do get them all recovered, rebranded, and relaunched anew, I’ll be sure to let you know. Because when that happens, I’m going to sell all three dirt cheap for a limited time.
Keep your eyes on your inbox for that.
In the meantime, enjoy the last bit of your weekend. I’ll be back in a matter of days to tell you more...
Oh, and in case you missed the last post, I also had a short story come out in Weirdbook Magazine last week! If you like weird fiction, check out this issue, #41, and/or the 40 that have come before it! You can find it on Amazon by clicking here. (Not sure if the Editor Doug Draa is selling it elsewhere or not...)
It came out on June 17 (my wife's birthday, actually!) and the editor didn't tell me...
WEIRDBOOK #41 is now about and available in paperback! The forty-first installment of modern weird fiction and this time, it's got one of my stories in it too!
That short story, "The Proposal", will also soon be featured in the new edition of KISS OF THE MAIDEN, a mini-collection of three stories of mine. More on that later.
For now, enjoy all the massive weird madness of WEIRDBOOK #41! Click here to find it on Amazon!
Virgin Post! (Or first post of the new site... whatever you want to call it...)
If you're used to finding this on Wordpress, you may have noticed that it now goes somewhere else. The address is the same but all the rest has changed!
I've decided to combine two websites into one. Saves a lot of time, bother, and (frankly) money doing things this way. The biggest factor for me, really, is that the Weebly website building tool is so much easier to use than Wordpress. As you may have noticed, I am NOT a cyber-dude. I hates me some cyber shit. So trying to program Wordpress versus drag and drop building tools... Yeah.
The new site is actually my old Fugitive Fiction site, still in the process of be redesigned and updated. That process will likely take weeks to complete. I'm doing it a little at a time. The most labor-intensive part will be putting in buttons that lead to all the various places you can buy my books. I also hope to build a store on the site someday so you can just buy those same books straight from me. But that's not a priority right at the moment.
For the time being, I'll continue to put blog posts on both sites. This will allow folks to (hopefully) migrate from the old Wordpress site over here to the new Weebly site.
To follow the blog from its new home here, I believe if you can just click on the "RSS feed" icon to the right. (Like I said, not a cyber guru...)
In fact, this blog post is probably going to exist in both places at once! And be the first post on the new site.
Let's try it out and see...