March cometh, and I realize almost four months have passed since my last blog/update. That’s entirely too long, but sometimes life has a way of making us forget just how fast it’s passing.
Anyway, no overarching topic for this one, just lots of little things to mention!
First, StoneGarden.net Publishing offered up The Uncanny Valley as a free Kindle download for just 48 hours this past month. It’s usually $2.99, but FREE has a certain ring to it, and the results were fantastic. By Sunday morning it had reached #6 on Kindle’s bestseller list for short story collections and #20 for Kindle horror books, and it remained within ten or so numbers of that throughout the rest of the day. By the end of the 48 hours, over 750 people had downloaded it, which really makes me happy. I hope everyone enjoys it…Just knowing that so many new readers have the book in-hand (so to speak) is gratifying. I never take a single one for granted.
On top of that, my first collection, Scaring the Crows: 21 Tales for Noon or Midnight, is now available for Kindle! Check it out here.
Next up, bestselling fantasy author Piers Anthony, who so kindly reviewed Scaring the Crows in 2010, also offered to review The Uncanny Valley after I sent him a copy shortly before the turn of the year. I hadn’t expected him to review it, and told him so when sending it along; he’s a busy man, and I was already grateful that he’d reviewed the other book. Yet he went ahead and reviewed The Uncanny Valley anyway, and just published his thoughts in the February edition of his online newsletter. Moreover, he enjoyed it, which means a great deal to me. Piers always goes above and beyond in terms of kindness and consideration, and moreover is honest – so if he compliments my work, I not only appreciate it…I believe him. And here’s the link.
I’ve had many irons in the fire lately. In addition to meeting my new students and getting the new semester started with them, I’m also working on two editing project by people I greatly admire. The first is a collection, Fog, and Other Stories, by author/poet Laury Egan. Laury has been a great proponent of my work, and edited a middle draft of The Uncanny Valley, also suggesting a change in the order of the stories that undoubtedly made the book stronger. It is my pleasure to now have the chance to repay the favor, especially because Fog… is a true gem. StoneGarden will be publishing it sometime in the next few months, and I will certainly link it here.
The other project is a YA book from none other than John Randall York, the extraordinary artist who has illustrated both of my books, and who, if I have any say in it, will illustrate all those still to come. John has turned his hand to writing, and has not one but two books coming out from StoneGarden this year: Blerbin, which I’m editing, and a picture book called King Bronty. Blerbin takes place in a zoo that has far more to it than meets the eye, and I’m having great fun reading the early draft.
Finally, I’m also finishing up the latest round of edits on my own new project, On the Edge of Twilight: 22 Tales to Follow You Home. This one is slated for publication in August, and the revision process is finally reaching the point where I’m beginning to feel satisfied, more or less, with all of the stories I’ve chosen to include. I’d like to have the entire project in fighting shape and ready to go by the beginning of summer, because I’m starting to think about Uncanny Valley again. Last summer I wrote 27,000 words of the prequel, and I have about that much still to go. I think Uncanny has many stories left to be told, and only a few have yet been written. This one is a doozy…and some of the plot points that had been giving me trouble toward the end of last summer are no longer standing in the way. The path forward is now obvious – but it will take a great deal of work to clear it completely.
Some other odds and ends:
One of my unpublished short stories, “The Eleventh Hour,” will be appearing in Mark Crittenden’s forthcoming anthology, Dreams of Duality, under Mark’s Red Skies Press publishing imprint. It’s a pleasure to be appearing in another of Mark’s projects. Here’s a link to his site.
The new, big-budget version of The Woman in Black is now out in theaters. I’d love to hear everyone’s thoughts.
Other Movies I Want to See This Year:
The Dark Knight Rises
The Hunger Games
The Great Gatsby
Wishing everyone a Happy March (and hopefully an early Spring),