Tag Archives: Sand of Bone

Does Convention Visibility Matter?

In the past few weeks, I’ve seen many successful writers make mention of the issue of visibility – the connecting of interested reader with published story.  These writers were not happy with their current visibility, and all commented about how difficult it was to know what would and wouldn’t work to increase success.  And these writers are trade-published, having the same conversation self-published writers have every day.

Gen Con’s Writer Symposium was quite educational in that regard.

A panel on how to get reviews was very specific in how writers were to approach reviewers, with all emphasis on demonstrating proper etiquette and expecting nothing in return.  The writer should submit a request.  The writer shouldn’t expect a response.  One panelist stated publishers didn’t do the reviewer-approaching for most writers anymore and the other panelists nodded agreement.  The consensus was that all but the most-publicized writers should expect to actively seek and collect their own reviews.  Whether the trade-published author was expected to send the reviewer an ARC and/or eARC at their own cost wasn’t clear to me.

As the panelists went into greater detail on the methods of gaining reviews and properly reacting to reviews, I was thinking to myself it was great information.  I’d love to approach other reviewers and–fingers crossed!–achieve a little positive visibility.  Here was the roadmap, right?

Nope.

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Writing Away While Away

I remembered to bring every writerly thing I might conceivably desire to use on my weekend retreat.  Alas, I forgot most of my food.  Clearly my priorities were in order!

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I took myself and one dog camping this last weekend, and chose a site right on the lakefront.  This meant I was a tent amongst small RVs, but the sites were large enough I didn’t feel as if they were right on top of me.  Aside from the repeated, “You’re out here by yourself?” disbelief, my camping neighbors were nice, and practiced that wonderful balance between being friendly and leaving your neighbors alone.  Besides, as you can see from the picture, you couldn’t beat the view.

Getting away from phone calls, business, internet, and at-home reminders of everything I could (should?) do other than write was the motivation for the trip.  With all the other things happening these days, I was finding it impossible to wrap my head around how to make changes to Breath of Stone’s original outline that properly and deeply incorporated the seemingly small changes to Sand of Bone.  I had trouble keeping track of the diverging and converging plotlines.  And I had to figure out how to keep the character arcs I wanted while considerably shortening the action arcs.

I am happy to report it worked.  It did help that, due to my food-forgetting, my meal preparations were no more distracting than heating a boxed soup on a Sterno stove (and that little thing is awesome!) and opening bags of peanuts and dried fruit.

The remainder of today is for a little writing followed by necessary chores and teaching.  The rest of the week is for plowing ahead before I lose momentum.  While it would be awesome to say I can finish the draft by the end of October, thereby clearing the deck for a possible NaNoWriMo attempt, that would require consistent 5K-word days.  Since not showing up to teach and ignoring my son aren’t viable options, I’m going to say that October 31 finish date is out of the question.

One the other hand, finishing the draft by the end of November isn’t unrealistic.  Let’s give that a tentative shot, hmm?

Added note: Younger me would have been affronted at the shock others had to find a woman camping alone.  Current me finds it amusing.

 

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I Want You To Love It

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I want you to love Sand of Bone.

Yes, of course I want folks to buy the book, but I want you to love it even more.

If you love it, you’ll stay up later than you should to read just one more chapter.  You’ll suck in a breath when the unexpected happens.  You’ll smile when one Blade tries, awkwardly, to flirt for the first time.  Your muscles will tense and your pulse will quicken when the fight begins.  You’ll let out a long breath of relief when someone at last understands.  You’ll feel joy and betrayal, anticipation and dread, satisfaction and hope.

You’ll finish the story and want more, and spend time thinking about what will happen next because the “more” isn’t available yet.

I’m working on that more right now, my darlings, because I love this story.  I want you to love it with me.  The greatest motivation is knowing others love it, too.

If you haven’t picked up Sand of Bone yet, you can now find it at Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and iTunes.

And, of course, it’s also still available at Amazon and Smashwords.

 

 

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New Bits On SAND OF BONE

At last!

Sand of Bone is available for Nook through Barnes & Noble.

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There’s also a great review by Sherwood Smith at Goodreads.  (Cool news about her upcoming release can be found here.)

My favorite thing about the review?  She discusses her grimdark limits as a reader and where Sand of Bone falls on that continuum — information so important to readers choosing their story experience.

I want the folks who buy Sand of Bone to be GLAD they did so.  I don’t want readers surprised by a book that’s darker than — or not as dark as — their expectation.  As I’ve said before, my goal as a publisher is not to sell as many books as possible.  It’s to sell as many books as possible to readers who will enjoy them.

And folks have been buying Sand of Bone through Amazon and Smashwords!  Hooray and thank you!  (And it’s been nice to see Sword and Chant get a little bump as well.)  Now all you wonderful Nook readers can get in on the action.

 

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New Release: SAND OF BONE

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“Searingly vivid, and grittily realistic, Sand of Bone slams the reader into a harsh desert world full of complex people, tense moral dilemmas, and an exhilarating jet of the weird. Do not start this one late at night!” — Sherwood Smith

Amazon     Smashwords     iTunes

Barnes & Noble     Kobo

Syrina – descendent of the gods, one of the Velshaan who rule the deserts and deltas, cast out by her bloodkin for daring to reject their intrigues.

They thought exile to Salt Hold – surrounded by parched earth and outcast Blades who despise her – would end her defiance. But Salt is safer than the grand alcazar of home when she uncovers the secrets of commanding sand, fire, water, wind – the power mixed with ambition that nearly destroyed her bloodkin in generations past.

Pyrius was the desert’s most respected Blade Commander until the bloodkin sentenced him to Salt. But he finds a way to keep his Blade vows while still exacting revenge: serve the exiled Velshaan Syrina. When her bloodkin’s threats become actions, Pyrius sets a plan in motion that will either prevent the looming civil war simmering in the desert’s heat or see them all fed to the sands for sedition.

Because Syrina’s ability to touch the desert’s deepest elements is still fickle and raw – too weak to defeat her bloodkin, strong enough her bloodkin want her stopped before she learns more. The gods demand a soul in trade, and the fate of the living rests upon the redemption of the dead.

Amazon     Smashwords     iTunes

Coming Soon:   Barnes & Noble     Kobo

Breaking Rules For Principles

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Honestly – I don’t go around looking for rules to break. I don’t get my kicks and giggles from bucking conventional wisdom. It just… happens. I didn’t like the education opportunities others had created, so I’ve homeschooled my son for nearly nine years. I don’t like standard workweek obligations and expectations, so I contract and freelance all over the place. I didn’t like driving slowly on mountain roads, so I drove my ’66 Mustang around hairpin curves while stepping on the gas and—

Wait. Never mind. Ahem.

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More of What Ends Up In the Book

Once upon a time, I lived near deserts and I loved them. It was natural, then, that deserts became the living and breathing setting for Sand of Bone.

When I was a kid, my grandparents owned a piece of desert property outfitted with a one-room cabin outside Apple Valley, California, on the edge of the Mojave Desert. Apple Valley was a little tiny place at the time – less than a tenth of the population it is now – and for a kid raised in the suburbs of Orange County, it was about as middle-of-nowhere as I could imagine.

Our family spent a few weekends every year up there. It being the late 70’s, my parents let me roam the desert at will for hours as long as I promised to never try to catch a snake or explore the abandoned mineshafts.

Continue reading More of What Ends Up In the Book