I’m trying something new, readers, and it makes me nervous.
For that matter, I’m trying several things, and only one of them involves creating a pun for the title of this post.
First: A quick status update. You can skip this if you don’t care about current projects.
A Cold Day to Drown is still out to agents. Of the 30+ I sent it to, I’ve only received 10 rejections, so there’s still about a 2/3 chance that I will get 20 more rejection letters in the next month. Or, you know, it might get picked up. I’m still somewhat hopeful, in the way a man on the gallows has some hope that the rope around his neck had been used one too many times before and will snap when the trapdoor opens. If you don’t hear anything else from me in the next two months, you can assume I’m in negotiations. Otherwise, expect for me to put out a big call for beta readers and then self-publish A Cold Day to Drown in early 2019.
Splintered Demons is slowly coming along. You may have noticed a death of updates recently, and that’s because I’m considering reshaping both Dyson’s Angel and its sequel as serials. I love both stories, but they’ve yet to gain much traction with audiences. Not to be cynical about it, but when I’ve got hundreds of stories bustling about in my brain, I might as well focus on stories that more people are reading.
Which brings us to the new projects…
I’ve got several projects that I’m working on for the next few months, as I pursue publishing Cold Day and slowly peck away at Splintered for my own satisfaction (releasing bits and pieces as they are long enough to share).
First, I’m going to focus on writing short stories in September. The goal is to write thirty short stories in thirty days and you can read more about the initiative over at Pixel Wretches.
Second, did you see that link? I’m putting some effort into launching a podcast and blog focusing on creativity in the modern world. If you have any questions about writing or creating, or want to be interviewed about your creative work, tweet them to me @alinke or @PixelWretches. This is a very different path for me, but I have so much fun talking to creative people at conventions that I want to try parlaying that love of creative conversations into interviews which might benefit the creative community as a whole.
Third… the pun. I’m working on a new series of stories which will be in the genre of, well, humorous superhero horror. Yeah, really. I’ve got about half a dozen characters outlined and rough plot sketches for four novels. Expect to see a lot about Danika Blaze and her companions over the next few months, as I plan to do a series on Pixel Wretches in which I dissect the outlines that I’ve written for these novels throughout October, then use NaNoWriMo to dash out a full novel in about a month. Yes, a full novel, or something close to it.
The Danika Blaze novels will not be 400 pages long. In a return to the pulp fantasy stylings of the 1970s and 80s, I’m aiming to have each novel clock in somewhere around 150-200 pages. Short, yes. And I will price them appropriately, with paperbacks selling for about $10 each (less if I can make it work or you buy a set) and ebooks selling for $3 or less. I’ve struggled with this decision, worried that I should be giving my readers as much text for their money as I can, but the more I look at the history of publishing the more I realize that there’s nothing wrong with writing short stories, publishing short novels, and generally providing readers with a form of entertainment other than the Tolkien-esque epics that we’ve grown used to in the last twenty years.
I’ve got a couple other projects I’m working on as well, but none of them are quite ready to share, especially since one of them falls into that eternally dull category of an English Major writing a “great American novel”.