Updates and Audiobooks

Hello everyone! Happy new year. Anyone following this blog will have noticed my unexpected hiatus over the past couple months. Due to a couple of changes in my schedule, I’ve had less time than intended to keep up with things. Pair that with the holiday season and some things fell through the cracks. As a result, I wanted to take the time to give some updates on the status of my writing, this blog, and what to expect from me going forward.

A quick overview of what happened

Several things happened all at once which caused the disruption of my plans. Most obviously, my debut novel released. I always knew that releasing a book was going to come with work, but I didn’t realize how much I was going to have to do after it was released. It’s always discussed in terms of the preparation and few people talk about post-release obligations. Since my book released, however, I have been to two promotion events and two conferences, I’ve been trying to schedule a second book signing, and I’m trying to keep track of valuable promotions and opportunities for visibility. That’s over two and a half months, and I’m trying to get more conferences and events on my schedule for next year. That wouldn’t be a problem if not for my day job and my family, but here we are.

As well, I am now trying to prioritize work on my sequel, which understandably takes a lot of my creative focus. Very few people can write in multiple different stories at once, and I have proven that I can’t. Since this blog was originally conceived as a place to build interest in my books mixed with supplemental content for anyone interested enough to seek it out, the sequel has to take priority over the blog.

On top of the predictable series of events above, I also learned over the last few months that my day job, which is a necessity for most debut authors for at least a few books, is in danger of getting outsourced. As a result, I’m being forced to build other marketable skills in order to protect my ability to keep writing and covering the costs of self-publishing well. I haven’t been posting here, but trust me, I’ve been working. There’s a few other more minor events, but those on their own might have caused me to miss a week here and there. The two months of silence came from the combination of juggling new obligations with old while trying to train for a new career.

The blog is alive

First and most importantly, In terms of moving forward, I do intend to return to regular posting on this blog. These plans include posting some fiction that will remain available for free and some thoughts on publishing trends, books, or TV/movies as the story-telling elements seem relevant. Due to ongoing changes in my schedule, however, there will be some changes. These are listed below:

  1. Posts will be biweekly going forward. Weekly posts are too much for me to keep up with under my new circumstances. Weekly was hard when I only had a full-time job, a 4 year old, and debut book production to worry about. Add in book promotion, book writing, and career swapping and it’s never going to happen.
  2. Only one post a month will be fiction. I hate to do this, since the fiction posts were part of what I loved about this space, but it’s needed. As I said above, I can’t work on two projects at once, and this was never intended as a space for beta content from upcoming books.
  3. Non-fiction posts are going to start leaning more toward opinions on recent releases in books, movies, or TV, or experiences while working on my second book. Part of that is because it requires less research, but honestly, I do a lot of the research for my own publishing anyway. Mostly, this is about quality. There are a limited number of publishing topics I can provide a unique viewpoint on, and it doesn’t do anyone any good for me to re-hash the same information you can find on seven other web sites with a quick Google search.
  4. I’ll be leaning on discussions with other consumers of the same media more. I always want to approach my discussions with an eye to evaluating how the story-telling works or fails because that’s the element that I have any expertise to examine, but at the end of the day, an evaluation is always an opinion. It’s more valuable to more people if those opinions are contrasted between different people as opposed to just me rambling about my thoughts.


The last thing I want to talk about is an announcement. My book, Wake of the Phoenix, has finished audiobook production and is awaiting final approval. I am extremely excited about this, and I can’t thank my producer, Scott Fleming, enough for his hard work. The final product is exceptional. I was hesitant to begin the audiobook process because of how hit an miss they can be, but this is a product I am very proud of. I’ll be running some promotions over the next month to try and build some interest and visibility for that audiobook and I hope to get some reputation for my narrator, as well. I’ll announce here and elsewhere when the audiobook becomes available. Keep an eye out of that’s an interest of yours!

Wake of the Phoenix Updates: Events, Pricing, and Audiobooks

Due to some family events I am unable to release my usual post today, but I want to take a few minutes to share some updates anyway.

First, the conference was a success! It was great getting a chance to meet readers and talk about my book with them, and several people were interested in Wake of the Phoenix and purchased a copy. I’m very excited to continue attending conferences and meeting readers in the future.

Second, I want to send a special thank you to everyone who was able to attend my book signing and an extra virtual hug to those who wanted to and couldn’t make it. The store was very happy with the event, leading to an opportunity to schedule a second signing event, this time in Tallahassee, Florida. Negotiations are still under way for that timing, but I’ll release the information as soon as I have confirmation.

Third, I have begun production on an audiobook. This is still in initial stages, but it looks promising and the rough estimate so far is to have an audiobook release in December, 2021. That is very exciting. I can’t wait to share that format with everyone. The narrator is extremely talented and I think really adds a lot to the book for those who prefer an auditory format.

Finally, in unfortunate news, the recent difficulties in shipping and paper shortages have caused my printer, Ingram Spark, to raise the cost of production on physical books. That means that I will be forced to raise prices on paperback copies of my novel at the beginning of November. I am trying to determine the least amount I can raise the cost to offset the increased cost of printing, but due to the nature of self-published novels, it’s more complicated than I’d hoped. This change won’t affect the cost of the e-book or audiobook, since those formats don’t rely on the same production and distribution channels.

This week’s intended blog post should be released this weekend, and I’ll plan to be back on a regular schedule next Tuesday.

Release Day!

Happy Tuesday, everyone! It’s release day for Wake of the Phoenix!

I’ll admit this feels like a day that both came way too soon and took way too long. I’m very excited to share this world with other readers and find the audience that loves it as much as I do. A very special thanks to all the ARC reviewers who have already given this book a shot and shared their comments. Special bonus for anyone in the Colorado Springs area: I have a couple in-person events coming up over the next couple weeks! Here’s the initial list:

  • Mile Hi Con–Denver, October 1 through October 3. Vendor table on author’s row
  • Book signing–Colorado Springs, Barnes and Noble at (on Briargate near Academy), October 9 from 12-2

I’ll make sure to announce any other events I schedule. I’m hoping to be able to attend more events (when it’s safe) throughout the next few months, possibly outside of Colorado.

Sample Pages!



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Wake of the Phoenix Release Day!

My debut novel, Wake of the Phoenix, has finished distributing ARC copies and early reviews are coming in. While the book is not for everyone (and no book is, really), you can tell from early comments on Goodreads that a number of readers are connection well with characters and are intrigued by the political conundrums. If you missed getting an early copy, take a look at the sample chapters below or go pre-order your copy!

More traditional blog posts will be back next week, including part 4 of my Self-Publishing Guide, this time discussing the challenges of Marketing, as well as potentially a new fiction story the same week.

Novel Update

I’m posting a little bit of a different format today because I want to share some exciting updates on my upcoming novel, Wake of the Phoenix. Over the past few months I’ve been going through the process of preparing my book for publication and I have hit several milestones.

  1. Edits are complete. This is a huge milestone. Some self-published authors make edits even after they’ve released a version of their novel and every author releases their book and then wishes they could make one last change. Despite those constant insecurities, my editing is complete. This is not to say that no changes will be made to any of the content between now and my release date. After receiving my professional edits back, applying the changes, and calling my manuscript “done but for the formatting,” the first thing I did was see it in a different format and find typos. There will no doubt be more typos. Nonetheless, this does mean that all substantive changes to the novel have been made.
  2. Maps are finalized for first book status. The maps released a couple weeks ago are now confirmed as the final maps depicting the status of this world at the beginning of Wake of the Phoenix. These maps were created on Inkarnate using their premium subscription. I initially made sketches on the free version and figured those would be okay, but I do have to plug the premium version now. Aside from more complexity, it allows you to make more traditional styles of internal maps and I greatly enjoyed playing with the expanded tools and stamp options. Those maps will be present in the opening pages of my novel, but they can also be used as reference material for events recorded in the fiction posts on my blog.
  3. Interior formatting is in its final stages. This is exciting news, in no small part because I have spent years working at a legal publishing company where my job was to skim PDF documents of official court cases looking for formatting errors. These included everything from weird hyphenations to misspelled words to backwards quote marks. It has been a genuinely surreal experience applying those same skills to making my own book look professional and complete.
  4. Cover design has progressed from concept into detailing. Many authors walk into their books with a concept of their cover art or with an image that represents the story to them. I’ve never been that person. As a result, gathering visual ideas and trying to craft those into something to represent the book I worked so hard on was a daunting task. Thankfully, I had a skilled cover artist who sketched a rough concept in 20 minutes on the phone with me. While the initial concept was exciting, he has had two weeks to work on building that concept into a solid cover design and I am expecting a second draft in the next day or two. From there I will discuss any concerns and suggest and specific changes and wait for the final draft, in 1-2 weeks. I can’t wait to share the result with everyone. I’ll be revealing my final cover in early July both here and on Twitter. Keep an eye out. I’m pretty excited by my artist’s work.
  5. Advance Review Copies will be available to request in 2-3 weeks. I’ve been saying for some time that my book, Wake of the Phoenix, will be released this fall. That means it’s time for ARC readers! I’m still waiting on my cover to send any copies, but I’ll begin collecting information for anyone interested in a free copy of my novel soon. I hope to be able to send e-book ARCs starting in early to mid July and physical ARCs by the first week of August. Keep an eye out here and on Twitter for a form to request an ARC if you’re interested. My only request is that if you accept an ARC you write me an honest review on Amazon. I am a firm believer that truth brings the right readers and unreasonably inflated ratings just piss people off.
  6. A release date has been selected. This is a bit of a funny announcement, since I’ve been saying my book is coming out “this fall” for months. As well, anyone who has ever self-published knows that you pick a release date much earlier than this. The exciting news here is that my plans are coming together, my tasks are getting completed, and the book is ready. This means that my release date (which will be announced when I reveal the cover in a couple weeks), will be the same one I’ve been targeting for several months now.

Here’s a couple sneak peaks of formatted pages from the book: