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Friday, November 30, 2012

Gators Subdued

Making LOTS of progress on new novel. Ideas flow faster than I can get them down.I sometimes jot down brief notes about what's coming up next at the end of the actual text so I don't forget any inspired ideas. As a result of all the creative outlet, I'm sleeping better at night with fewer strange dreams intruding. Got those subconscious gators under control.

I'm still struggling with the title, as well as how to refer to a concept in the story, sort of a secret society. I've tried Googling a couple of ideas, but all searches seem to turn up another book or a movie or a TV show, and I really want something fresh and different but which immediately conveys the idea. While writing the book has the most pull right now, the problem of title and naming the concept continually nags at me.

The other challenge, besides not being able to type fast enough, is to make sure my POV character, written in first person, has her own voice and doesn't sound like any of the characters in either "Faces" or "Dabblers." Stefanie in "Dabblers" had an almost literary tone because the character is intelligent in surprising ways (don't want to spoil anything for those who wish to read the book!) Tracy in the "Faces" series is a smart ass, given to quips and sarcasm.

For the new book, the lead character, Dee, is also smart, but not in a streetwise way. She knows technology and has the analytic sort of mind that goes with it, but she has other characteristics. She had a tough childhood and fought her way out and up in the world, but hard lessons about right and wrong and a timidity about causing trouble continue to channel her decisions and actions. She wants to do something important and believes she has taken a first step in that direction in her job working for a U.S. senator. Since the story at hand introduces her to a different way of seeing the world, she will have to choose between closing her mind and staying on the slow, sure path or making huge adjustments, growing into a different sort of role, and pursuing her goals in a way she never imagined. Either choice will require sacrifices.

"Stranger Faces" should be ready to send off to Write Words, but I still hesitate. At odd moments, I'll think of something to check in the manuscript and maybe read through some passages, and those moments have led to a change or two, either to correct something (in one case, I found the word "steam" instead of "stream") or to remove something such as an unnecessary bit of conversation. I found a segment of dialog which concluded with Tracy saying, "Thanks. I'll need it," to someone wishing her luck on talking to the police. The line added nothing at all, whereas the other character's wish of good luck had some snap to it and makes a better break. At some point, I'll simply decide that I've tinkered enough and then just send it off, which means an official end to tinkering.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Those Darn Gators

Still editing "Stranger Faces," but I think I'm close to being done. Having said that, I recall all the other times I thought I was "done." And wasn't. How I feel about a phrase or passage or scene depends on my mood on any given day. What seemed perfect yesterday might scream for tweaking today. Yet, the key indicator of being "done" editing is usually when I try to change something only to realize that it was perfect the way it was before, whether because a change would effect more changes around it or later or because or for some other reason.

Also still toying with the cover art. I tried another concept, one which more closely resembled the previous two covers in the series, but my hubby thought it too close and that I was repeating myself. So I went back to my first design which depicts (sort of) the strange nightclub Tracy goes to in Chicago for a meeting with her current client. The passage represented is a pivotal one, and there are faces involved, very strange ones, so I think it works. I also wrote a "blurb" for the book.

Am I done? Should I send it off? I guess if I have to ask, the answer must be "no." I will contemplate this further and trust intuition. .

In the meantime, the gators (i.e., my subconscious and imagination) have not been fed enough lately. Actually, it's more like letting them out to create a story in words that keeps them quiet. When I'm not actively creating a novel, I am plagued by weird dreams at night and an unsettled, antsy feeling during the day. Yesterday, I picked up again with the next novel, the one I started rewriting, and it helped a bit even though I did not get to the point of typing anything new on it.

On the promotional front, I have increased contacts on Twitter and Goodreads, and I have set up boards on Pinterest as well. Looking for any way I can to get my name and books in front of the public.

Monday, November 26, 2012

If My Book Became a Movie - Dabblers

My traditional post of the dream cast for the movie version of the novel. There are no real spoilers here, but I  do have a friend who does not want to read my picks before she reads the book.

There are a lot of characters in Dabblers, many of them of only modest impact, but I've concentrated on the major players.

Stefanie Durant - Neve Campbell.. She has a kind of vulnerable look that suits Stefanie.

Paul Durant - Brendan Fraser. He's a big guy, just like Paul, and he has a huge capacity for playing men capable of tenderness.

Amy Greenleaf - Nicole Kidman. Perfect.

Officer Sam Wentworth - Adrien Brody. Having seen him in a few movies playing an action hero sealed the deal.

Melinda Van Zant - Indina Menzel. Something about her looks matches up with Melinda.

In other news, as they say, I have a second cover design for "Stranger Faces" that I'm a bit more comfortable with in terms of its style meshing with the other two books in the series. May be getting close to sending it off to be published, although I still have to write a blurb.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

The Writing Life

"Stranger Faces" is in a somewhat tiresome editing phase, I am still prevaricating on the cover, and I have accomplished very little the last couple of days on the writing front. Now I see my week of vacation drawing to a close, and I get the sinking feeling I could have made better use of it. Oh, how I long for the life of a real author, to be that person who makes a living from writing. Sometimes, I fantasize about how I would structure my day for writing if I did not have a day job. A balance of "business" with accomplishing the other necessities of life, a chance to indulge in other activities I never seem to have the time for, like exercising or playing the piano. As I look back on the first three days of the week just past, I am disappointed in my performance in that regard. Too much time squandered on unproductive things. Even so, I'd like to believe that the main cause of this is a pent-up need for "me time." Sometimes, you have to occupy the middle space between doing what others want and doing what you want, which is, unfortunately, doing nothing.

Need to get over this hurdle of completing "Stranger Faces." I think I'd feel better if the cover were solid. After that, proofing and editing is somewhat tedious but finite. Or at least as finite as I can make it. For every book that I've published, I've always been able to go back and find something I missed or something I would have changed. Perhaps I should just not look, but sometimes I have to go back and see what I said in an earlier book in a series in the writing of a new one. But once "Stranger Faces" is done, I can move on to my latest novel, working title "Where Power Lies."

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Ah, the Holidays

Happy Thanksgiving to one and all. I plan to enjoy the day with my hubby and two cats, putter around the house, have a non-traditional Thanksgiving feast (Polish cooking since we're not big turkey fans) and bask in the comforts of home. No, I don't intend to go shopping either today or tomorrow. No desired to face the lunacy. And nobody in this house likes football.

"Stranger Faces" is very near completion, but I am still unsettled about the cover art. While what I've come up with is striking and has elements of the story in it, I fear it is too different from the other two covers in the series. My publisher has said that there must be some design continuity. I've toyed with some other ideas, but they remain vaguely defined, and as usual, easy to envision yet difficult to execute.

Thanks to all who have found this blog and have followed me on Twitter. My list of followers grows by leaps and bounds. I keep learning more about all these social sites. It's tough when you get into them long after their introduction because by then, everyone else knows how to use them and there's not much to foster the newbie.

Keeping it short today because I have a lot of cooking to do. I wish everyone peace, safety, and the comforts of home.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Work Work Work

But it's fun work! Greatly enjoying some time off from my day job and accomplishing a lot on the writing and publicity front.

  • Reading/editing the final two chapters of "Stranger Faces" and considering an alternate cover concept.
  • Increasing Twitter followers and sending daily tweets about my books.
  • Updated my Google site,Kathryn Flatt, Writer to contain PDF files of my short stories.
  • Invited Twitter followers to be friends on Goodreads, where I also found out how to do general update messages. 
  • Doing other updates to web materials.
  • Checking out websites of people I follow on Twitter.

I also jump into "Where Power Lies" from time to time when I have a good idea to get down, but I'm trying to focus on completing "Stranger Faces"

At odd moments, I've been reading "...Or Perish," a mystery novel I mentioned in an earlier post, and I'm enjoying it. I know I need to do more reading, but it's often difficult to find a book that really grabs my attention. While people are quick to suggest the hot novels/series that are going around, most of them don't interest me much. "50 Shades of Gray"? No interest in "mommy porn." Summaries I've read suggest the female lead is naive and weak enough to be ensnared by a slightly depraved sort of seducer, and weak females don't interest me. I took a pass on the Harry Potter series because I'm not interested in reading stories for kids. Ditto the whole "Twilight" thing because overt paranormal doesn't ring my chimes either. Vampires and werewolves are the stuff of very old legends, and borrowing from and embroidering around those legends may be imaginative, but to me, not interesting. While I'm not sure about the gross-out level in these stories, I don't actively seek out anything that deals with lots of blood or people being killed in vicious ways. Not my cup of tea. While I do kill of characters in my own books, I try to keep the instances and descriptive details to a minimum. Those things are for dramatic impact only.

Okay, enough ranting.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Two Worlds

Interleaving "Stranger Faces" and "Where Power Lies" has been keeping me busy, along with increasing my presence on Twitter. I've tried to do daily tweets about one or more of my books so that new followers will see them. Hopefully, this will lead to more exposure and more sales.

"Stranger Faces" is in editing stage, going back over manuscript and verifying that what I have said is clear enough, detailed enough, yet not overworked. "Where Power Lies" is in a difficult passage where things are both revealed and kept hidden.

Looking forward to having an entire week off from my day job, but unfortunately, I can't spend all of it writing. My to-do list keeps growing, especially in preparation for Thanksgiving on Thursday. Just my own little family, but I try to make it a special meal. We're not fond of turkey, so I'll be making some different favorites although they wouldn't be considered traditional Thanksgiving food.

On the promotional front, I've been trying to find information on area libraries about who to contact for potential personal appearances. While talking to crowds as a lecturer is not exactly my forte, I don't mind chatting with small groups, perhaps readers of the genres I write or aspiring writers. While all the Internet stuff is nice, inexpensive, and safe for the ego, the personal touch cannot be ignored.

Friday, November 16, 2012


I have had it with MS Word's grammar and spell check tool!

This morning, I left off my new manuscript and set about proofing "Stranger Faces." Silly me, I used Microsoft's tool which presented me with the following correction flags that make no sense:

  • Repeatedly stops to change "it's" to "its" when the text of the sentence clearly means the contraction of  "it is" and not the possessive of "it." This is a quirky rule of English that is not all that intuitive, but Word always gets it wrong! Beware, authors! If you are using this tool to check your manuscript, remember that "it's" is a combination of "it" plus "is" and "its" indicates something that belongs to "it." 
  • My sentence reads, in part: "that he turned to Alex and me for help." Word suggests changing it to "Alex and I." Back in school, I was taught that if in doubt whether to use "me" or "I" in this way, take out the other person or people and the conjunctions. In this case, "that he turned to me for help" sounds better than "that he turned to I for help." 
  • In dialog, Word often wants to insert commas in odd places. Example: "Who is he?" Zak asked.Word suggest a comma after the name Zak. Huh? Shortly after that, it hit on "A friend," Alex answered. It wanted a comma after Alex. ???????
  • It stopped at the words "crock pot" and suggested hyphenating them. I did that. When the tool resumed, it hit on the correction I just made to "crock-pot" and suggested removing the hyphen. 

I may change the settings on Spell Check to do only spelling. Thank heavens that once I ignore the ridiculous suggestions above, it won't hit on them again unless I tell it to recheck the entire document.

On a different subject, I was watching one of my favorite TV shows last night, "The Big Bang Theory" and I spotted the perfect actor to play Kevin Fox if any of the "Faces" books was made into a movie. His name is Ryan Cartwright, and he looks so much like Pierce Brosnan did in "Remington Steele." Ryan Cartwright is about the same age as Fox, too! Here's a link to the IMDB photo of him, for anyone who wants a look-see:
Ryan Cartwright Photo on IMDB

In other news, as they say, I submitted "Dabblers" for consideration in the Love Is Murder convention "Lovey Awards." Do I really expect to win? Nah. But the value is in that attendees and readers of the newsletter and blog might buy and read the book. It's (note--it's for it is) all about reaching readers.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Pounding Out Pages

New novel, working title "Where Power Lies," is now into Chapter 3 and a crucial meeting of my POV character and the hero/love interest. It's very interesting doing this rewrite because it's like having an outline from the old manuscript and yet not knowing with total assurance where the story is going. Well, I know where it's going, but how it gets there has changed from its previous incarnations.

Usually around Chapter 7, I hit a sticking point, which I believe I've commented on in earlier posts. Lots of things can happen at such a point--revamping earlier chapters, rethinking plot and subplot. Once I reach that point, it may be time to get back to proofing/editing "Stranger Faces." I also have a fair amount of vacation and holiday time away from my day job in the next two months, and while there's a lot of other things on my to-do list, I think I'll be able to press onward.

NOTE: In my post announcing I was starting work on "Power," I erroneously referred to it as my sixth novel. "Stranger Faces" is actually number six, and I have updated said earlier post to correct this. I have now assuaged my anal-retentive tendencies.

On a side note, I started reading (gasp!) a novel. I met the author, Joel Quam, at a book fair during the summer where we shared a table to meet, greet, and sell books. As we were packing up to leave, he offered to exchange "a mystery for a mystery." All these months later, I started reading his "...Or Perish" as noted on Goodreads, where I will provide a review when I'm done. Having been immersed solely in writing my own novels, it's interesting to read something by someone else who has a different style. That's not necessarily a bad thing. I might disagree with the style in some aspects, i.e., I would not have written something the same way, but the story has pulled me in by creating a host of interesting characters, an intriguing premise, and a totally believable small-college-town setting. I've already been tempted to turn to the back and find out if two particular characters get together at the end of the story, proving that I care about these fictional people. That is perhaps the first and greatest hurdle of writing fiction: readers have to care about someone in the story.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Back In The Saddle

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you out there who have begun following me on Twitter and also become Goodreads friends. For someone who is still very new to this electronic social world, it's good to hear from total strangers who are interested in my writing. I keep trying to find more ways to interact with book lovers and spread the word about my novels. Anyone should feel free to comment on my blog or send me an email at the address given above. I get so excited when I have contact.

How great it feels to be writing a new novel. About 2400 words so far. I've been having some thoughts on the title, "Where Power Lies," mainly because there's another book out by that name, although it isn't fiction. The word that popped into my head today was "interstices" which is defined as empty space or gap between spaces full of matter. Problem--will readers recognize it for its meaning or will it just be an unfamiliar word. It has application to the story, but it might be too vague. I don't think a book title should send people running for a dictionary rather than compelling them to buy the novel on the spot. (Okay, that's a little over stated, but I can dream, can't I?)

I know that the question of a title for the latest book is going to nag at me until I figure it out, but then again, most of the novels I've started writing did not have a final title until well into the process. Perhaps it's best not to try too hard to think about it and let it come to me.

Monday, November 12, 2012

So It Begins

After a few days of thrashing around, I have begun my seventh novel. That is, I started rewriting "Where Power Lies" (perhaps not the final title as there is already a book out by that name). While the book has been rewritten several times in the past, a few examinations of the version put on the shelf some years ago made me decide to just start from scratch. Not that what I had was all that bad. I may go back and copy and paste some parts into the new manuscript. One thing I did have to do, however, was apply one of the major lessons I've learned about writing for publication: begin where the story starts. That might seem very elementary, but even after several rewrites, the old ms. did not do that. The story starts when my character, Deanna, finds a body in the office of her boss, a senator. Instead of opening with a scene with Dee and some friends having drinks in a bar across the street from the murder scene and finding the body on page ten, I start with her looking at the body.

Figuring out how to start a novel has always been a tough job for  me. Not just where to start, but what that first sentence should be. In search for the perfect opening, I can find myself putting off committing words to bits and bytes for days even though the story is begging me to tell it. Such was the case with this new novel, e.g., the thrashing around mentioned above. But now it is started and a touch of relief settles in. Perhaps this is the literary equivalent of stage fright. Once a performer gets onto the stage and sings or plays that first note or speaks that first line, suddenly it's okay, they've begun, they can do it. That's how it is opening a story. In no time at all, I've written three pages.

I'm always somewhat perplexed by writers who say they must force themselves to write one page a day. When I get going, I can do ten, twenty, or even more in a single sitting. It often becomes hard to stop even in the face of other obligations. Even when I'm not actively at the keyboard, I'll keep thinking about the next scene or some mechanics of the plot. Of course, it's a bit different in a story that already has a basic structure and a fully developed plot, but I feel the excitement again of starting a new book, and the creative juices are flowing which ensures I haven't lost the touch.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Publicity and Feeding the Gators

In the name of publicizing my work, I've been exploring options available on the Internet sites I'm already set up with: Facebook, Google, Goodreads, Twitter, Authors Den, and this blog site. Really leaning on the Twitter aspects. The more people I follow on Twitter, the more they follow me back, and I've started putting out a daily Tweet about "Dabblers" with a quote from the story. Perhaps that will lead people to buy the book, but in any case, the exposure is free.

I once again find myself in that between-books state: editing the latest and planning the next, but with not a lot of real creation going on. What usually happens during this time is a lot of very odd dreams in the night. It's as though my imagination is still running but without an outlet. There was a passage from Stephen King's "Danse Macabre" (Berkely, 1983) in which the imagination is likened to a pit full of alligators. Sometimes you have to feed the gators to keep them from escaping. The analogy always conjures up the memory of a bit from the movie, "Romancing the Stone" in which the bad guy DID have a pit full of gators (or maybe it was crocodiles).

For me, writing is "feeding the gators" and when they ain't getting fed, the imagination machine dumps its product into my subconscious to create dreams of astounding clarity and seriously freaky imagery. There have been times when I wake from one of these subconscious creations and think, damn, that would be great in a book. A few have actually wound up in books, to wit, the dream sequence in "The Dreamer Gambit" and the cave dream in "Dabblers." While I don't generally read stories or watch movies about vampires, they tend to show up in my dreams on a regular basis, and I'll bet there's some deeply Freudian explanation for that. But since this has been going on as long as I can remember, I have not been troubled by the meaning of my dreams for a long time and don't invest much time worrying about whether they indicate I'm abnormal in some way. I know I'm not normal. I just need to keep the gators fed.

I have been doing some editing on "Stranger Faces," mainly in the realm of ensuring that I have conveyed what I intended, details are relayed in a timely manner, and no unintended contradictions have been introduced.

The length of this post seems to underscore my writing status just now--not doing it enough. Gonna  have to get down to really creating again, and soon.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Something to Share

Added a new page (see list at left) with an article I wrote about things I have learned on the road to becoming a published author. As I've often admitted in this blog, I embarked on that road thinking I already knew everything. I was wrong. The article contains what I've picked up from experience, advice from agents, authors, publishers, and books on writing. All of it has improved my writing, I think, and I thought I should share it with the "pre-published" authors out there.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Dabblers - The Soundtrack

In keeping with my established tradition (does 22 months constitute a tradition?), here is the "soundtrack" for "Dabblers."

These are songs that inspired ideas or underscored existing ones with their mood or feeling.

Lady In Black - Uriah Heep
One of the first songs for "Dabblers." There's a folk-song feel to it and the lyric describes the title entity who is "the mother of all men." It goes with the pagan female-centered aspects of the story.

Sorcerer - Marilyn Martin
From the movie, "Streets of Fire," a song by Stevie Nicks (who also sings backup). Sorcerers and magic just go together.

La Luna - Belinda Carlisle
From her "Runaway Horses" album. (Are they still called albums in the age of CDs and MP3s?") This one goes with how Stefanie met her husband in Paris, although the scene was long written before the song came out.

King and Queen - The Moody Blues
An old favorite of mine, with lyrics that reflect uncertainty about the dividing line between reality and dreams. The song was originally released long, long ago, then released on a live collection, and then again on a couple of compilation CDs. "It's like awaking from a dream. All I remember is the lullaby . . ."

He Doesn't See Me - Sarah Brightman
This one also qualifies because of the sort of fairy tale feel about it. I'm a huge Sarah Brightman fan anyway.

I'm still thinking about casting, although I have my picks for the three main characters. I might try to research some of the secondary characters before I post that.

Last but certainly not least, I want to mention that I received a very nice comment on this blog from Denise, and I am always thrilled to get real feedback from people, especially the positive kind. I love talking about writing and writing about it too, and to know that readers are interested in what I have to say is even better than getting paid for it.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Decision Made?

While thrashing about over what my next project should be, I came across a dark-horse contender that might just win the race.

Back in 2006 or 2007, a query letter caught the attention of a literary agent, and she had some suggestions for my manuscript about political intrigue and a murder. It was mainly a question of style, and I did a quick rewrite. Then she tried to sell it, and the main interest came from a publisher of romances with a line of romantic suspense novels. They said it wasn't "romance" enough. I had never set out to write a romance, i.e., a story where the relationship is the primary plot, but in the interest of getting published, I did my best to bring out the romantic aspects. It never quite worked out, and I moved on, both to new novels and finding a new approach to getting published.

Over the last few months, I've toyed with some new twists on the original novel, and I think I may have hit upon something. The plot line remains mainly the same--the protagonist is certain the death if a coworker was not suicide but murder--but my protagonist has changed a bit. I've given her some quirks, like an occasional problem dividing her flights of imagination from reality. That's where the twist comes in. I'm thinking that the reader should not be quite certain, at least early on, of whether my character has lost herself in her imaginary life or if what she is experiencing is real. If it is real, then the world she (and all of us) live in is quite different than we think.

A quick look at the original manuscript indicates that even without the changes noted here, a good deal of polishing would be required, reminding me again of how much I have learned about writing and publishing since then.

While "Stranger Faces" is on hiatus, waiting for me to go back to it with fresh eyes, I'll be making notes and planning for "Where Power Lies" as my next project. I already have an idea about an early pivotal scene that's been churning around in my head for a few months now. The fact that I have that gives this novel a huge leg-up on being chosen above all the other possibilities.

Unless, of course, I change my mind again . . .

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Updates and Decisions

More vendors are picking up more of my ebooks, which is great. All five are now on OmniLit.I've got ads running on Facebook and Google and Authors Den.

I've been working on "Stranger Faces," editing and adjusting, but I think it may have reached its time for a rest, where I put it aside for a while and then come back to it with fresh eyes.

Decision: what's next?

I had some ideas for a third entry in the Jack Watson series, and I could work on developing that more. As previously mentioned, there's a new character introduced in "Changeling" who could be a new POV. The next story should branch out in a direction where Tabitha having a major viewpoint is no longer feasible, but to do that, the new character needs to be developed more. I need to get into her head, find out where she's coming from, what kind of person she is inside in order to know how she will respond to things and what actions she would take.

I also started looking over some of my older unpublished manuscripts, looking for inspiration. Here's an update of the states of this old stuff that could be revamped and whipped into shape:

  • "Meds" - a medical thriller not quite completed. Needs a wrap up in addition to revisions of style. Good potential. Very complex because of all the points of view in it--four!
  • "Edge Factors" - sci-fi/thriller. Completed, but wa-a-a-y too long at almost 100,000 words. Also needs more conflict in some areas, and I have some ideas.
  • "Mond" - sci-fi. My first novel. Needs a WHOLE LOT OF REWRITING, but still a viable story.
I also have ideas for a sequel to "Dabblers," still in the formative stage, but with some really good scenes in my head.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Dabblers Now On Amazon

Just checked it this morning! Now I need to do some advertising, the paid variety.

Still hoping to get "Game Faces" on there as well.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Cover Art, Etc.

I do believe I have a cover design for "Stranger Faces." A crucial scene in the story occurs at a freaky sort of nightclub in Chicago where things happen that are important to resolving the puzzle later on. That is what I've tried to capture in the cover. It has faces on it, strange ones of course, in keeping with the visual theme of the rest of the books in the series, and also has a sort of sunset sky motif. It's a combination of free photographs, some digital drawing, and lots of cutting, pasting, cropping, and touching up. I'm getting better with my graphics tools, though. Mainly, I use MS Paint for selecting stuff from public-domain art work. I found if I zoom in extremely close, I can use the eyedropper tool to fill in transient white spots where I've pasted something in.

Here's what I've got:

There's still a lot of work to be done on the text, of course, but I think I'm very close to having a finished product.

"Dabblers" FB page went up, but I'm holding back on making an ad for it until more vendors are available for people to buy it. Right now, it's still just Write Words. I hope it shows up on Amazon. "Game Faces" never has, although I don't know why. If "Dabblers" makes it there, I'll investigate further about it.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

"Dabblers" Published!

"Dabblers" has launched! Yesterday, I created a Facebook page, added it to Authors Den and Goodreads, updated my Google site, added a publication credit to Linked In, and sent out tweets on Twitter. Next comes the paid advertising. I sent off an ad for the Love Is Murder Author Spotlight which appears on their website and newsletter. Other choices: FB, Goodreads, Google, or a combination of them? I also started thinking about doing some print advertising if I can find some appropriate publications.

I did some brochures for Author Fair last month, but now I need to update them to include "Dabblers."  The tri-fold ones will be tricky, and considering how much effort went into producing them, I hate to waste the ones I have left. If I can print a summary of "Dabblers" sized like the ones for the other books and then attach it to one edge of the sheet, it might work. Need something for the other side of the addition, though.

With the first draft of "Stranger Faces" done, I'm working through the editing process. The first phase is to check for discontinuities, add details to make sure I convey what I intended, and to provide proper setup for later scenes. This process also comes with some hazards, like repetition of both words and ideas, or referencing something at Point A which doesn't actually happen until later at Point B. Sometimes, it also leads to a massive change, an idea that comes into my head to make the story better. I guess the rule of thumb is, the bigger the change, the bigger the chance to introduce errors or problems.

Cover art. I can visualize the ideas but can't quite execute them. And searching the web for images to use can be hazardous as well, in the shape of viruses.

Once I get through the second pass on "Stranger Faces," I might let it rest for a while and play with some short stories. I'm still considering putting a collection together at some point, but there's one story still unfinished in my files and the idea for another knocking around in my head. The most recent one I finished, "Mr. Fixit," has gotten a couple of nice comments after posting on Authors Den. Should I post the other two when I finish them, or put them into a collection as "brand new"? Not sure at this point which would be best.