Saturday, April 2, 2011

Retrospective: Four Novels Later

Hello everyone.  I wanted to take a moment to reflect on my "writing career" as it is since I've just put out my fourth book, "Zombies and Power Tools."  Most people would ask me how are the books selling?  And I'd say a few here and there, but I haven't caught on.  And that's to be expected, considering there's so many authors out there.  Anybody can publish themselves, even without money or talent.  You, the reader, could go to amazon digital services and create yourself a nifty e-book in no time.  I've considered self-publishing myself, but I stop myself and say it's nice to have friends at your back, even on the small press level, so I'm not quite ready to go independent.  So sure, I haven't received tons of money and attention over adoring fans over my books, but this is what I have earned...

Fall of 2009, I put out my first novel "The Body Cartel" (Damnation Books). From my dealings with DB, I had great writing direction from a fellow author named Tim Marquitz.  I learned so much from this man with his pointers, and since then,  things seemed to have picked up after that.  I have appreciations for Damnation Books simply because they were taking the time and effort to put out my first novel, and they didn't restrain the graphic or sexual content of my book.  It's easily NC-17 content.  They gave me my start.  Enough said.

In Spring of 2010 I put out "Inside the Perimeter: Scavengers of the Dead" through Living Dead Press, which is to this day my best-seller, so to speak.  I've been fortune to have dealings with LDP because I've had short fiction in fifteen of their horror anthologies, and the people running the show have told me stories of their experiences in writing, and I've also gained knowledge of what I was still doing wrong in my writing and making adjustments from there.  I also have constant contact with LDP, and it's what keeps me going in my term of being an obscure writer.  Having a friend in the business, allies who are in the same boat as you, is VITAL.  We're not all Stephen King, but to hell with it, we're writers and we're going to write. 

In late/early 2011, a new publisher called "Panic Press" came onto the scene.  I got hooked up with "Panic Press" through their e-zine "House of Horror."  I'd have a few stories published through them and they reviewed two of my novels.  Being associated with them, I was able to pitch "Ashes in Her Eyes," my third book, and get it accepted.  I'm very proud of this one because I've shopped this around for many years.  I had a few publishers interested, but because of its seedy nature and graphic content, it got shoved aside.  It's not "Twilight," sorry.  "Ashes" is a mix of thriller/horror/intensity, and it's got a pulpy flavor to it.  I hope the novel finds its audience.  I also enjoyed my experience at "Panic Press" because it's a true labor of love.  They're writers publishing writers.  It's a good place for a writer to be.  Again, if I did it independently, I would've missed out on a lot of good experiences. 

And recently, I put out "Zombies and Power Tools" from Living Dead Press.  I think if anybody wanted to read something by me to see if they'd enjoy my flavor of writing, it'd be this book.  This is MORE than a zombie novel.  It's got blackmail, secrets hidden between friends, zombies who are proactive during the whole book, and the zombies are mysterious.  They're not dumb vessels.  They have motives, ideas, and ambitions.  And they use power tools to kill people--and the use of power tools has a reason that's intricate to the plot; I'm being serious.  Check it out if you don't believe me.  And once again with LDP, the publishing process is straight forward and streamlined.  It's also one of the few places I've actually talked over the phone with the people working there.  I like LDP too because they put ads in Fangoria, which costs a lot of money, but it shows how serious they are about marketing and getting the word out. 

So there it is, folks.  My "writing career" so far.  Sure, I'm not rich.  I'm obscure, but compared to before Fall of 2009, I'm in a better place.  If it takes twenty novels to finally be noticed, then so be it.  But my real movitation day-to-day is the interactions I've had with Damnation Books, Living Dead Press, and Panic Press.  Actually working on a project and seeing it to the end.  Getting experience.  I think that's payment as well, because no college could give that to me.  I think all new writers should be focused on getting experience more than the money payout, because more than likely, it won't be there. 

Thank you to everyone who'd read my books, thrown kinds words my way, reviewed me on amazon, and thanks especially to my wife, who's had to read my early drafts of stories and has stepped up to the plate with encouragement when things work out and dusts me off when things go to shit. 

Four novels!  Here's to four more!

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