Thursday, June 28, 2012

You Guys are Awesome!

Thanks for the likes and the votes. Seeing picture 2 was overwhelmingly the favorite, I have updated to that on my Author Page.

I got back feedback on TLP this week, and hope to dig in a week or so and shore up the problem areas that were pointed out to me. In the meantime, I am close to finishing my second draft of DKK, and then it will be off for feedback. I'm also sorting out in my mind the basis for a fourth story in the world of Valendria- a reverse Beauty and the Beast, where the princess is the one that needs to be transformed by a shipwrecked merchant.

How has your progress been going?

Monday, June 25, 2012

Author Page

In an effort to start building up my web presence more, I set up an author page in Facebook. If you are interested in viewing it (and liking it) you can find it here:

I have two different pictures I can use for my profile photo:

(I am currently using this one)

or this one:

So, I'd like to hear your thoughts on the subject. In the comments, tell me 1 for the top picture or 2 for the bottom.  Thank you all for your help!

In other news, I am putting together a contest for reaching 100 followers. Details are still being sorted out, and I will post it as soon as I can, but I can tell you it involves a signed copy of a book by one of my fantastic CP's.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Celebrations, Interviews, and a Give-away

Hope you all had a great weekend. The weather here was fantastic, and we have a wonderful time yesterday with both families celebrating Father's Day and my dad's birthday.

Thank you all for stopping in and commenting to Graeme on his book last week. It was a lot of fun, and something I hope to do again soon. If you are releasing a book, or have a book out, and want an interview, contact me at mewaibel (at) gmail (dot) com and we will set something up. Do you want to do a guest post? Let me know!

And, finally, somehow, in the midst of it all Thursday, I reached 100 followers. To mark this success, I will be coming up with a give-away, so stay posted for information.

Hope you all have a fantastic Monday!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Interview with Graeme Smith

Today I am pleased to introduce to you Graeme Smith.

Graeme and I met on the Writer's Digest boards a few years ago when we were both working on queries and synopses.

Tomorrow, June 15th, Graeme's novel, A Comedy of Terrors, is releasing from MuseItUp Publishing.

Congratulations Graeme! [Be sure to check out the book trailer here.]

Now, on to what you've all been waiting for. An interview with Graeme!

How long have you been writing?
In terms of novel length fiction – about eight years. Of course, it sometimes feels like eighty… :-).

What inspired A Comedy of Terrors?
A bad Query :-). For those who may not know, a Query is a short (240 word or so) letter you send to a potential Agent or publisher to try to interest them. To get them to want to read more of your book. I had a book I’d co-written with another, um, writer. It had been published in a small print market, and my co-writer (yes, and I) was/ were interested in whether it had any legs in the greater market. Heck, we were greener than grass. We didn’t even know that the small-print market publish cast it into the pale as far as anyone else was concerned (blushes).

Anyway. I’d never written a Query, so I writted one :-). And I knew it was probably fairly awful (it was :-P). So I sent it to the Query Shark. But I knew she posted very few Queries, so I wanted to interest her. Get her attention. So I sent her a cover letter with the Query. Heck, now I’d call it the query for the Query :-P. But I wanted to grab her attention, so I started a little left field. I started
‘Allow me to introduce myself. I’m an Idiot.’

Suffice to say she hated the Query.
But…. She loved the intro letter. Which she posted _with_ the Query, as contrast.
Her readers and commenters seemed to feel much the same. They hated the Query. Loved the tone of the Query for the Query. So… I started thinking. And Segorian was born J.

Where do you write?
In my head. The keyboard is just the interface to the electrons :-). But, to be more precise, writing at work would be all sorts of Bad. So I write at a desk at home, when my wife’s asleep. I know three AM really, really well :-).

What three things must you have to write?
Time, a keyboard and a concept. A single ‘image’ (not a picture – for some reason, I don’t see pictures in my head. Though I do dream in pictures and colour). So ‘Road like a River’ (coming in January 2013 from Museitup) came from me chopping onions for dinner, and having a thought about a black truck driving down a dark road, the black lily swinging on the dash. The driver’s looking for someone – and it’s not good thoughts he’s having. But what if….?
Well. That’s for January, right? The whole ‘what if’ thing. Yes, I confess. I’m a pantster :-). I don’t think I have a plotter bone in my body, or drop of plotter blood in my veins. No, nor arteries either :-).

Do you prefer drafting or revising?
Drafting.  See, I walk round in short sleeves in minus twenty (Celsisus). So I sweat a…. Oh. Sorry. You didn’t mean that :-P. But I’ll stick with drafting. That’s what pantsters do. We draft, until we get to the end and the cold (I like cold :-P) wind of revision starts to blow… :-)

What do you listen to when you write?
Mostly, my characters. Lordy, they’re a chattery lot. That, and the keyboard. Or the silence – but no music.

What author has influenced you the most?
I’d love to try and be clever and say ‘the writer I was yesterday is the writer who influences the writer I’ll be tomorrow.’ But that’s not only not very clever, it has far too many words. And doesn’t begin with a capital letter, so my copy editor may get upset with me (blushes). So I’ll say, and if I may not just one, Craig Shaw Gardner and Tom Holt.

Do you have any other works coming out in the future? If so, what and when?
‘Road like a River’ will come out from Muse in January 2013.

How did you come up with your title?
For ‘A Comedy of Terrors’, I quite blatantly stole from Lord William of the shaking Spear. I didn’t even know there was a movie of the same name… (blushes). ‘Road like a River comes the nature of the main character, or one of the main characters. Charlie. He used to be a ferryman, but now he drives a truck…

How long does it take you to write a book?
There is, of course, a difference between time and duration. It depends on how much time I can spend focussed on the keyboard while doing all the other things a full time job and being a not-quite useless husband needs me to do. Well, if ever I rise to ‘not-quite-useless’ :-). But I hope to finish the seuqle to ‘A Comedy of Terrors’; by the time ‘Road like a River’ comes out. So maybe six months. If I get lucky…

What is your work schedule like when you're writing?
Horrible :-).

Do you work on one project at a time, or do you jump back and forth between projects?
I focus – but with sidetrips. So until recently I was:
Still editing ‘A Comedy of Terrors’
Revising ‘Road like a River’
Finishing ‘Jack Shadow’
Starting to play with a possible ‘Young Adult’ idea – Bullet and Bolt
Revisiting a more classic fantasy – ‘Night and Day’.
I guess that really means I jump back and forth :-).

What is your beverage of choice when writing?
Cold, sparkling water. With extra cold. :-).
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I’m not sure my editors would call them ‘quirks’. They’d swear a lot more. And maybe shout :-). I tend to write what I call ‘bullet sentences’. That is, very short ones that I hope have high impact. And a lot of my characters have absolutely no idea whatsoever as to what is going on. Their voices trail off. A lot… :-P.

Why did you choose to go with a small press?
A friend talked me into it – yes, I’m looking at you, Lady ******! Seriously, I have a bad habit of not admitting defeat. If someone tells me something can’t be done, I have a real hard time stopping myself from not trying to do it (unless it involves heights. I hate heights… :-P). So I was taking Segorian round the world of Agents, and getting silences or Form Rejections. And this friend kept telling me about the revolution in e-publishing. Sure, I knew of it, but I was still in that whole ‘well, they say it can’t be done’ thing and mailing Agents. But one of the things about friends is, they don’t give up on you either. So thanks, Lady ******! :-)

Now for some fun questions.

 If you could be any character in fiction, whom would you be?
Sometimes I wonder if I’m one already :-). We all have images we present ourselves as. There’s me, The Idiot. Some people (heck, it’s how we first met, right?) know me as him. There’s me the writer. Unless it’s paying the rent, is that a fictional character? But if I could be anybody, I’d maybe be Segorian. Or maybe Charlie. Or… hmm. Maybe I’d just be Jack, from ‘Jack Shadow’ – down, Lady Gail! But if it had to be one other people would know of already – I’ll be the anonymous fiddler in the credits for ‘Fiddler on the roof’. Feet ever unstable, but ever moving, lost in the moment of the bow on the string.

If you could have dinner with anyone from history, who would it be, and why?
Can I have three? I’d love to sit Leonardo da Vinci, Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein at a table – and just listen :-).

Where is the one place in the world you have always wanted to go, but have never been?
My honest answer would be ‘round the next bend’. I never get there, always want to go there, but hope to keep trying. If I had to be more specific – the middle of an empty ocean in a sailboat :-).

Thank you so much for stopping by, Graeme. A Comedy of Terrors can be found at MuseItUp Publishing beginning tomorrow. If you enjoy tongue-in-cheek humor and word play, you will like this novel.

Segorian Anderson’s an Idiot. But that’s fine with him. It’s a well paying job with no heavy lifting.

Nobody ever remembers Segorian. It isn’t magic - he just has the sort of face his own mother could forget, and she’s been trying to for years. But being forgettable is a job requirement for an Idiot.

No, he's not the Court Jester. He doesn’t wear motley (whatever motley may be). That's a different union. He’s the Idiot. In a Queen’s castle, wine spilt down the wrong dress can lead to war. So someone unimportant has to be blamed for it. That’s the Idiot’s job. He’s the Idiot that did it, for any value of ‘it’. Of course, as soon as he’s exiled-for-life out of the castle gate, he uses his back-door key and sneaks back in.

But that's not all. Someday, something really bad will happen. Really, really bad. Badder than a bad thing on a very bad day. With extra badness. When the world’s about to end (or the washing up won’t get done – whichever comes first), who you gonna call? No, not them. They haven’t been invented yet. You call the Idiot. Someone nobody will miss if things don’t work out. And now Peladon has a case of dragon.

But the dragon may be the easy part. Segorian has woman trouble, and he’s the only person in the castle who doesn’t know it. Because to Segorian, women are an open book. The problem is, he never earned to read.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Revising and an Interview

I spent a lot of time reworking a few sections of TLP this weekend. I can honestly say, I think it's getting better. Now, I just need to wait to hear from my CP's for where I stepped off the path and into the muck.

In other news, please stop by Thursday for an interview with Graeme Smith. It's to kick off the launch of his debut novel, A Comedy of Terrors, releasing Friday June 15th from MuseItUp Publishing. You can see the book trailer here.

Here's a bit about Graeme:

This is me. Graeme Smith. Fantasy writer. Mostly comic fantasy (which is fantasy intended to make you laugh, not fantasy in comics).

When I'm not writing (well, or editing my writing. Or re-writing. Or editing my re-writing. Or... Quite. You get the picture), I'm doing other things. Things like wishing I could play keyboards. And not playing them, not even very badly. Things like online gaming (If you know Bard Elcano, you know me. If you know a grumpy old dragon called Sephiranoth, you know me. If you know a tall, dark, handsome but brooding vampire, charming witty and brilliant - we never met. That's someone else.) And strange midnight practices involving mushrooms. And garlic. And knitting needles. But the less said of my cooking, the better J.

So there you are. This is me. Graeme Smith. Short, fat, bald and ugly (fortunately my wife has lousy taste in men). Time was, I worked on a psychiatric ward. Now I write about people who believe in magic and dragons, and who live where the crazy folk are the ones who don’t.

Hope you all have a great Monday!!!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Progress Report

It's been a busy few months in our house. I never realized lacrosse would be more demanding on us than hockey was. While it was a good season, and the boy had fun, I am rather glad it is over. Now I have until July when Friday Night Hockey starts up.

On the writing front, I have been busy revising TLP. I went back to my original opening (a prologue) and changed up the relationship with my two MC's. Now I am about halfway through and making some smaller storyline tweaks. I have the early chapters out to my CP's for feedback and hope to have more for them soon.

I've also been playing around with trying to make a book cover. I have an idea in mind, but am finding it much more difficult to translate it into images than I expected it to be. My hat off to those of you who make those gorgeous covers we all covet.

What have you been up to?

For more progress reports, check out these sites:

Monday, June 4, 2012

Summer Box Office

Summer is almost upon us, and the silver screen has been lighting up with the block busters. Here's a list of some movies I am looking forward to taking in during the hot summer days:

Snow White and the Huntsmen
The Hunger Games (No, I haven't seen it yet)
The Avengers

What movies are you looking forward to seeing?