Sunday, February 22, 2015

How NOT to respond to a review request

So, time hasn't frozen after chugging a gallon of ice cold milk, which means April 8th will eventually be upon me.

I'm still on the last line-edit pass, tightening sentences, crunching commas, and cross-fitting paragraphs until they won't shut up about it. But two months prior is when it's time to go begging for reviews.

With my first book, like a wide-eyed idiot, I thought to release her into the wild, sit back, and wait for the reviews to come in. Four months later I realized people don't like to take the time to put down words unless under some obligation.

Despite the absolute spleen exploding mess that was the contest win with Lulu for The King's Blood, I did meet some pretty nice people while trying to drum up marketing. But people get busy, their book queues fill, and I have to venture into the scary wide web to find more.

I try to be conscientious when sending out my pitch. If they say they're full, I don't bother them. If they only want to read gay sprite romances, I won't bother them. But there's another rule I follow when it comes to sending my novel out for free that's off the books.

There is a certain breed of writer, let us call him the disgruntled self-declared genius, who self publishes one or perhaps two books which makes him an instant expert. He is usually a he, over 40, white, and bloviates about a white over 40 male writer who does awesome things and has women throwing themselves at the character's feet. You all know what I'm talking about.

I bring this cul-de-sac up because I went against my better judgement and sent a book pitch to a guy who gave off those vibes. (If he were younger I'd expect him to wear a fedora) I got what was quite possibly the most condescending response I've had in ages.

And I quote:
"I've never read your book, but comedy is very hard to write."
 That translates to, let me adjust my glasses here:
Now now, little lady. You don't want to go boiling those poor lady brains and your baby making bits trying to write a joke. You should leave it up to the men.
 As you can probably guess, I will not be sending my free book to a self-described tortured genius who has already decided I must be terrible at comedy and all that so hard science-fiction and fantasy stuff when all he knows is I have a pair of ovaries. It'd be better for my marketing if I drill a nail through my hand.

This mindset is infuriatingly fascinating, that by publishing once it makes someone above reproach. It's just a book. You're not that amazing. You're not a poor tortured genius no one understands. Believe me, we've all seen the shit you've done a million times before. The world isn't trying to keep you down, it seriously doesn't give a shit about you.

Don't be like that guy. Don't be a dickhole.

In Dwarves in Space news, I've finally finished all the portraits of my characters so you can see their faces before you can meet them. (That's helpful, right?)
Did that whet your whistle-sword? You can pre-order the "comedy is really hard" book for only $2.99.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Spanish Fog excerpt

 This novel is set in 16th century Spain, 8 years after the end of the reconquista. Tempers flare between the muslim citizens and their new christian overlords. 

A bandit works the streets, forming his own personal army to shake down anyone for good coin. Only, the bandit Vaho is hiding a deep secret, he is actually a she.

The below excerpt is when Vaho stops by to visit the only person trusted with the great secret.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Dwarves in Space - April 8th!

Thousands of years after the jewelry's destroyed, the sword reforged, the dragon ridden, and the indecipherable prophecy translated into a recipe for sugared biscuits, the dwarves turned to that final frontier: space. And along came the elves, orcs, gnomes, trolls, ogres, and those vermin-like upstarts, humans. 

It's official, Dwarves in Space: The Firstening is dropping on April 8th but you, yes you!, can pre-order it now on amazon.
The Elation-Cru is not the flashiest ship, nor the newest, or even has all of its bolts attached; but she can fly. Well, sort of wade through space, and that's when all the parts are working. She supports a sugar addicted dwarven pilot, an elven engineer, an orcish doctor, a silent djinn, and the lone human trying to hold the entire thing together with duct tape. Variel, the captain, has been hiding from a secret for the past five years and time's finally run out.

When she goes against her common sense and fights to save her
on-board assassin/renter from a job gone sour, she finds herself before an ex-colleague that knew her in her previous life as the Knight of the realm. The entire ship is sent on a mad dash across the universe -- from a decaying space station, home to the wackiest species the galaxy has to offer, down to the Orc homeworld, which wouldn't be so bad if Variel hadn't spent most of her previous life fighting in the war against them. Chances of survival are nil and slipping fast.

You can read a sample of the first chapter by clicking the button below.
April 8th! Pre-Order now!

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Dragon Age: Inquisition Valentines

You knew they were coming. Like the washing of the tide, the rise of the sun, the Hurlock hiding behind the damn pillar so you can't put your staff away until he's dead, it was inevitable.

This year was a bit of a scramble with eight possible romances, but I got them all done, as well as a few extra valentines for the new companions. I did not make a new Varric one. Forgive me, but I doubt I can ever top the one from 2.

Anyway, enough chattering. On to the valentines:

Now with Corypheus! Someone (Hi goat lady!) asked me to make one for our stumbling villain and I obliged:

 Cassandra, the true romantic at heart. But she'll smash your nose in if you call her on it. 
Pretend you don't know this about me

Blackwall. Notice the rainier hearts behind the dark wall. I stole the idea from Cole.
My Lady

Dorian, adorable yet sad Dorian. I call him the honey ham of despair. He's sweet, tangy, and sad at the same time.
Care to Inquisit me again?

Sera. Nothing more need be said. Woof!
Cookies that say Woof

Iron Bull. I'm rather proud I kept the 50 Shades jokes to only the shade of satin sheets. Very proud!
I will bring myself sexual pleasure while thinking about this with great respect.

Josie. Notice the raven flying in the background. I'm not saying you'll wind up with stabbed kidneys if you dump her, but...
If you meant to draw a blush to my cheeks, you've completely succeeded.

Cullen. Cully-Wully. Oh just give him a hug already, the man needs it.
Did you just pinch my bottom?

Solas. This is the start of the bittersweet valentines. Love's not guaranteed to last, and sometimes there are more important world changing things.
What we had was real

Viv. Sorry, Madam de Fer pleasedon'thurtme! For that non-Valentine in your life that won't stop asking if you're ever going to.
Oh Darling, of course not

And Cole's got your back if you completely screwed up and need to try again. Use sparingly as there's a chance people will begin to remember you.
Wait, I got it wrong. Forget

But because picking a favorite romance is like choosing the best skill in a tree, below are all the other valentines from across Origins, Awakening, and the redheaded bar maiden DA2.