Jennifer Brozek | December 2014

Freelancer Summary December 2014

by Jennifer Brozek 31. December 2014 13:51

This is the last one I will publish. However, I have found it very useful for the metrics and for learning how I work and what I need to do to improve my working style as well as my relaxing style. (Hint, I need to relax more. You’ll see in the metrics post.) So, I will kept doing my monthly freelance logs but no need to keep posting them. I hope you all got some useful information out of them.

Ever wonder what a freelance author/editor does? Each month of 2014, I’m going to list my daily notes on what I do. As I always say, being your own boss means you choose with 70 hours of the week you work. None of this talks about the random pub IMs, time doing research, time reading books for blurbs, introductions, and reviews, or short author questions. It doesn’t cover my pays-the-bills work either. This is just publishing industry stuff. “Answered pub industry email” can be anything from a request for an interview, to contract queries, to reading anthology invites, to answering questions about dates… and the list goes on.




Answered pub industry email. AIP blog release of FROST. Freelancer Summary blog. JenniferBrozek and AIP Googlegroup posts. Edited and added 200 words to the Girls on Games chapter and turned it in. Blurb for a book.


Answered pub industry email. Blurb for a book. Client negotiation. Editing THE THIN. Outlined Hiroshi story. Prepped and mailed Scribe Award packages.


Answered pub industry email. Editing THE THIN. Blog post. Updated personal website.


Answered pub industry email. Editing THE THIN. Cover photoshoot for AIP book.


Answered pub industry email. Finished edits to THE THIN and returned to author. Submitted works for award consideration.


Answered pub industry email. Approved outline for Cross Cutting #3. Skype call with editor. Chased down an invoice.





Answered pub industry email.


Answered pub industry email. Blog post. Wrote 300 words on the Hiroshi Nevitt story. Book release announcement to HWA.


Nothing. It’s my birthday.


Answered pub industry email. Wrote 1200 words on the Hiroshi Nevitt story. Blurb for a book. Interview with a college student for an assignment.


Answered pub industry email. Wrote 1000 words on the Hiroshi Nevitt story. Create gift certificate for client’s editorial gift.


Answered pub industry email. Wrote 1750 words on the Hiroshi Nevitt story. W-9 for publisher.


Hosted SF2W monthly gathering. Proofing Apocalypse Girl Dreaming ARC.





Answered pub industry email. Edited Hiroshi Nevitt story and sent to alpha reader. Proofing Apocalypse Girl Dreaming ARC. Proofed “Broken Silence of Fanghan” for Not Our Kind anthology.


Answered pub industry email. Paid quarterly taxes. New “Tell Me” blog. Answered a convention survey. Final edits on Chimera Incarnate.


Answered pub industry email. Turned in Hiroshi Nevitt story. New AIP blog. New personal blog. Final edits on Chimera Incarnate. Voted in Scribe Awards.


Answered pub industry email. Final edits on Chimera Incarnate.


Final edits on Chimera Incarnate.


Final edits on Chimera Incarnate and turned back in to publisher.


Answered pub industry email. Outlined YA horror story.





Wrote 700 words on the YA horror story.


Answered pub industry email. Answered interview questions.


AIP blog post. Wrote 120 words on the YA horror story.


Personal blog post. Wrote 800 words on the YA horror story.


Nada. It’s Christmas.


Answered pub industry email. Wrote 300 words on the YA horror story.


Answered pub industry email. AIP blog post. Personal blog post. Wrote 708 words on the YA horror story.





Answered pub industry email. Wrote 810 words on the YA horror story.


Answered pub industry email. Paid PA. Wrote 827 words on the YA horror story.


Answered pub industry email. Setup goal spreadsheets for 2015. Wrote 650 words on the YA horror story and sent it to the first round readers.


Answered pub industry email. Metrics for the year. Google Group posts. Story edits on Hiroshi Nevitt story. Personal blog post.


Urban Fantasy Roundtable

by Jennifer Brozek 27. December 2014 10:03

The authors of Under an Enchanted Skyline box set ($0.99, available only until Dec 31st), participated in an urban fantasy roundtable.

Most Urban Fantasy stories focus on magical creatures and entities. Even so, ordinary people still play important roles within the story line. Do these “normals” have much of an impact in your story…and if so, in what ways?

Erik Scott de Bie: As a superhero adventure, Eye for an Eye is a bit of a black sheep: it features exactly one character with magical abilities—Lady Vengeance. In addition to her high-tech hero opposite, Stardust, the story features a series of mundane characters, including The Raven, who is the tech-based vigilante you’d get if you combined Iron Man and Batman, and Elizabeth Stevens, Stardust’s non-superhero wife, tech company tycoon, and the smartest person in the whole novella.

Phoebe Matthews: Always. It is the normals who have to solve the problems created by magic and by paranormals. Sorry, no superheroes here.

Django Wexler: Yes, definitely. Again, a common UF trope is that the protagonist is in some way special, somewhere between the monsters and the normals so he or she can serve as a guide to the fantastic for the readers. In the John Golden stories, this is literally true, since John’s only real power is to transport himself to the fairy burrows and back again. But since fairy burrows run on real-world computer systems, he has to deal with the “normals" who build and maintain them – system administrators, executives, users, and so on. He’s more or less an exterminator, since fairies are a nuisance!

Janine A. Southard: As the collection’s compiler, I don’t have a story in this boxed set. I have, however, had the chance to read them all. Each author in this bundle blends fantasy characters into the normal world, or vice versa. There couldn’t be a super-natural adventure without a familiar jumping off point. In some cases the protagonists are as magical as magical can be, making their way in our normal world. In others, simply touching the magical world transforms a normal person’s experience.

Cedar Blake: Well, Luke and Chalice provide the impetus for Rachel’s “transition,” and Rachel’s rotten manager Margie supplies the push that gets her going. Her pal Ashli (inspired by a real-life friend of mine back when I lived in the Bay Area) adds an essential (in)sanity check for Rachel, and Kim the Yoga Girl acts as sort of a benevolent archon figure, watching over the point of transition and providing a small yet significant test as the hero steps from one threshold to another. So yeah – Rachel’s story could not exist without these key figures. “Normal” or otherwise, they provide foundations and activities that make everything else possible.

Jennifer Brozek: Absolutely. The mundane people in a story become the “everyman” characters that the Reader can identify with. They are the normal people who have to face extraordinary circumstances. Many characters in my UF series are normal people just trying to get by as they are affected by the supernatural events going on around them. Many times, they show that the normal person can be just as effective as the supernatural creature.

Other questions and their roundtable answers are with: Phil, Erik, Phoebe, Doug, and Janine. This was a great roundtable. And I hope you all enjoyed it.

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Operation Rescue Singas

by Jennifer Brozek 24. December 2014 14:15

Or how I became a six cat household on Christmas Eve.

For the last seven weeks, I’ve been keeping an eye on a pair of singapuras put up on A pair of girls had been willed to a doctor who already had pets. They tried for seven weeks to integrate the kitties and it didn’t work. All the back and forth ended up with an email yesterday that came down to, “it’s not working, will you come get them tonight?”

I emailed Jeff and asked if he was willing. He was. (My hero!) And suddenly, we had Operation Rescue Singas, the cutest escort mission ever. We drove 540 miles roundtrip in about 11.5 hours (holiday traffic) to pick these little loves up. The story got a little weirder. (IE: The deceased woman’s husband is still alive. He didn’t even know the kitties names. I need to contact him for any information on the breeder, shots, paperwork, etc… HIS contact info is forthcoming.)

So, currently, Talia and Lyta are temporarily housed in the cat room in full airlock mode—much to the disgruntlement of the current four living here. And they such little lovebugs. Talia is super friendly and loving and outgoing. Lyta is very shy but does cuddle and purr.

Now, this six cat household is not a permanent thing…unless it is. There is a couple in Korea from the Singapura list that will be adopting them. We are in contact and they are working out a courier arrangement to get them to Korea. I hope it works out. If it doesn’t, Plan B—you know me, I’m a planner—involves a couple of other people on the Singapura FB list. Plan C is that Jeff and I keep them. We both know that’s a possibility and are prepared for it.

Today they went to the vet. No feline leukemia or feline aids. Yay! No fleas. Yay! No microchips. Boo! Talia has a watery eye but it’s healthy. Yay! Vet bill we didn’t expect. Boo! Generous donations from the Singapura FB list covers a lot of it. Yay!

So, the kitties are happily ensconced in the cat room. My cats are pissed. But all is well in the world. Merry Cat Christmas to one and all.

This is what the singas traveled in. Plus a furry bed. No tight carriers for this escort mission.

Lyta on the left. Talia on the right.

Even shy Lyta can't resist the cuddles of the Husband.

Talia refuses to stay still except for cuddles...briefly.

The Cat Airlock and only one of the four cats eyeing it. Yes. Pharaoh is in a cone. He keeps scratching at his eye.


Bubble and Squeek for 16 Dec 2014

by Jennifer Brozek 16. December 2014 09:35

Editing. Writing. Getting end-of-year things done. Here's some links for you. Hope your December is as awesome and productive as mine is shaping up to be.

Review: GeekDad reviews Chicks Dig Gaming. He gives it a big thumbs up.

Review: GeekMom reviews Chicks Dig Gaming. She also gives it a big thumbs up.

Review: SFRevu Review by Bill Lawhorn of Athena’s Daughters anthology where he gives a great shout out to my story, “Janera."

Article: How I remain productive while traveling. I wrote this for the SFWA blog while traveling.

Book Release: Jazz Age Cthulhu anthology with my 1920s Lovecraftian novelette set in Assam India, "Dreams of a Thousand Young."

Book Release: New Valdemar antholog, No True Way, with my dark YA story, "Written in the Wind."

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Tell Me - Andrew Williams

by Jennifer Brozek 15. December 2014 10:09

Andrew Williams from Journeys in Color Photography is a local Seattle photographer who recently did my new, amazing headshots. He travels. He's wonderful. He's open to new clients. I can't recommend him enough. Below, he talks about taking photographs of cosplayers.

On Cosplay Photography

I first got serious about photography around four years ago. As a writer, I frequently wrote about places I traveled, and I wanted good pictures to accompany articles and blog posts.

Among the places my travels took me was science fiction and fantasy conventions. I’ve always been a fan, but I missed out on conventions in my childhood, mostly because I wasn’t aware of them—or if I was, I’d been conditioned to think of them as places for total geeks. (This was back before being a geek was cool, and I didn’t yet have the self-confidence to revel in being different.)

But as I began writing fiction, I got involved in the writing community, which meant going to conventions. And not only did I discover a huge community of people who passionately loved the same things I did, I was astonished by their creativity, as people took their geeky passion and channeled it in ways I hadn’t even considered.

Among those people were cosplayers—people who put in huge amounts of work to create costumes and even whole identities, which they then wore about in broad daylight! Now these were people who quite literally wore their geekiness on their sleeves.

As a budding photographer, I naturally turned my camera in their direction. It was my first real opportunity to take photographs of people—I’d been taking plenty of pictures of landscapes and flowers, but an ongoing case of Social Awkwardness had kept me from engaging much with actual humans. Taking pictures of cosplayers not only helped me practice photography, it helped me make friends with people I might not otherwise have met. And as my skill improved, photography became not just want a way to complement blog posts, but a creative end all its own.

When we write, we take temporary ideas from our head and transcribe them to the page, where they gain permanence. There’s a magic to that which I also find in photography—capturing a fleeting moment in time and transcribing it to a picture. Like stories, pictures are ways of taking what’s in our head and making it more permanent, not to mention easier to share with others.

Whereas a writer or a photographer can take their idea and transcribe it by themselves, the creative act of cosplay is a bit different. On its own, it’s temporary. At the end of the day, or the end of the convention, the cosplayer resumes their everyday guise. Their real life transformation ends, and the idea—briefly brought to life through makeup, clothing, and props—turns back to an idea.

But a photographer can capture the cosplayer’s transformation, their “story,” and help give it permanence. Sometimes a photographer might be more like a reporter, giving a straightforward nonfiction account of what’s in front of them. Sometimes they might be more of a creator, collaborating with the cosplayer and adding their own style or ideas, through setting, lighting, and more. I like these occasions the best, when two people work together to create something that neither could have done alone.

Now that I’ve started a photography business, this is an attitude that I apply not just to cosplay photography, but to portrait photography in general. As a photographer, I’m a collaborator, helping someone to create something memorable, something neither of us could create by ourselves.

But cosplay photography will always be one of my first creative loves; not only does it make for great pictures, but it’s taught me a lot about confidence, creativity, and passion.

My chosen author photos. In case you were interested in seeing some of Andrew's work without clicking links.


My Birthday Week

by Jennifer Brozek 8. December 2014 09:12

Today begins my birthday week. (My actual birthday is on 9 Dec, Tuesday.) Birthdays are important to me because, sometimes, I’m twelve. The Husband knows this and he left me a bar of chocolate and a little love note to kick things off. I won the world with that man.

As with most authors, what we really, really, really want for our birthdays is to be acknowledged in some way. I don’t need a gift from you but if you want to gift something to me, I’ve listed some little things out.

1. Like my Amazon author page. (If that’s still a thing.)

2. Leave me an Amazon or GoodReads or Barnes and Noble or DriveThruFiction review. Every single word helps.

3. Like my Facebook fan author page or the Apocalypse Ink Productions Facebook page.

4. Take a picture of one of my books with you or a furry friend or a fabric friend and send it to me.

5. Buy yourself (or a friend) a book from Apocalypse Ink Productions. If it is one of my books and you want a hard copy, I can even sign it for you. If it’s an ebook, I still believe I can sign it for you through authorgraph.

6. Gift yourself with the gift of editing from me.

And I hope you have a great week, too. Ping me on twitter and tell me about it. Send me puppy and kitten pictures. Tell me something awesome about your day.


Breaking Up is Hard to Do

by Jennifer Brozek 5. December 2014 16:32

This month I took a hard look at money coming in and money going out. The money going out exceed the money coming in. Thus, opening up my schedule to freelance editing clients. Then I went back to one of my rules from The Little Finance Book That Could: determine “wants” versus “needs.” A couple things immediately came to mind.

First, DVDs from Netflix. As much as I love getting them, I halved my Netflix bill by dropping that part of the service. We’re keeping streaming because the Husband uses Netflix streaming almost every single day. Thus, it is worth the cost.

Second, my Verio email/website account. This one is definitely a “want.” But it is also very hard to give up. I’ve had this account longer than I’ve known most of my friends—since 1994 when it was owned by a different company. Verio took it over in 2001 (I think). I’ve kept this account all that time. Over two decades.

But, I don’t really use the email or the website anymore. I have my own domain,, for the website and I use yahoo and gmail for my email addresses. The email address has been mostly used for the other accounts I’ve had for so long: Amazon, my bank, PayPal, etc… All these important accounts that, for the most part, I’ve already added 2nd and 3rd email accounts to.

In essence, my Verio account is like me having a paid storage locker filled with once needed books I never intend to read again, but it looks good on reference papers. Occasionally, I glance in it to make sure something important didn’t get lost there but otherwise, it’s useless to me. I’m just being a digital packrat. Or digital hoarder.

There’s a lot of emotions wrapped up in an email / web account I’ve had longer than all my nieces have been alive. At the same time that’s $300/year I don’t need to spend. So, I took a lot of time yesterday officially shifting the accounts to other primary email addresses I use on a daily basis.

This included a lot of swearing as my Live ID was also linked to the old email address. When I opened it up, it forced a merge with Skype which then locked me out of both. Yeah. Not fun. Luckily, the Husband was able to fix most of it remotely and finally fixed Skype by uninstalling and reinstalling it.

Now, I get to spend the next couple of weeks making sure that nothing important, that I’ve forgotten about, is linked to the Verio account and remind everyone (once more) to shift my email to one of the email accounts I actually use. Then, before the end of the month… I cancel the account.

It’s weird. It almost feels like I’m breaking up with someone. Untangling everything, dredging up old memories and forgotten lore. Having second thoughts then letting reason prevail. When I hit the “cancel” button, I can only hope that I didn’t leave something important behind to be lost to the digital void.


Bubble and Squeek for 3 Dec 2014

by Jennifer Brozek 3. December 2014 09:46

Article: An SFSignal Mind Meld on the Best Book Openings.
Interview: Wag the Fox interviewed me about Apocalypse Girl Dreaming

Podcast: Baen Books Podcast: BFRH 2014 11 21. Bryan and I talk about Shattered Shields.

Review: SF Crowsnest reviews Shattered Shields. It appears that the review, Kelly Jensen, really liked it. Awesome.

Review: Bookwraiths review of Shattered Shields. 3 out of 5 stars but really like it.

Sale: Apocalypse Ink Productions is running a Winter Special. Code: WINTER2014. 20% entire order. If you ever wanted my Karen Wilson Chronicles, or Industry Talk... or Jay Lake's Process of Writing... or Ivan Ewert's Gentlemen Ghouls series... or Peter M. Ball's Flotsam series... or Dylan Birtolo's Sheynan series... now is the time.

Writers: I am now open to edit your work. Here are my freelance editor rates.

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Freelance editing rates

by Jennifer Brozek 1. December 2014 17:17

Give the gift of editing for your favorite writer or to yourself from a Hugo Award-nominated editor.

All prices include a Skype call if desired.

Short stories up to 7500 words. $35/hour. Full story copy edit. 2 hour minimum (Usually doesn’t take me more than 2 hours).

Editorial read on a novel. $35/hour. Average is about 10 hours for up to 80,000 words. This is book doctoring and content development. (This is not copy editing. This is a chapter by chapter analysis of the novel, looking for holes, repeated writing bad habits, and such. It does include a copy edit of the first chapter.)

Novel copy edits are based on word count and due date. Rush deliveries include a rush fee. Normal novel copy edit prices: $1000 for up to 75,000 words. $1500 for 75,000-100,000 words, $150 per 10,000 words after that.

Everything else needs to be negotiated on a project-by-project basis.

Contact me through my contact form or ping me on twitter: @JenniferBrozek.


"Jennifer painstakingly edited a few short stories for me. I was very impressed by her diligence and attention to detail as she found repeated phrases and grammar issues. She also had some great suggestions how I can improve my writing overall and make the stories stronger." ~Elizabeth Guizzetti

"Jennifer paid close attention to my theme and ideas during consultation and captured the feel of my game perfectly. I would certainly be happy to recommend Jennifer to anyone looking for a creative writer or editor." ~Robin Fitton

"I hired Jennifer to give me feedback on a novel I was working on. Her feedback was extremely helpful; I doubt I will view my writing the same way again. I can't recommend her enough." ~Matthew Kagle

"Jennifer, as an editor, is very concise about what kind of images she's looking for with regards to the art, but not so rigid as to stifle the creative creative process. She is imaginative, creative, and an amazing story teller." ~Amber Clark


Freelancer Summary November 2014

by Jennifer Brozek 1. December 2014 09:35

Only one more of these to go.

Ever wonder what a freelance author/editor does? Each month of 2014, I’m going to list my daily notes on what I do. As I always say, being your own boss means you choose with 70 hours of the week you work. None of this talks about the random pub IMs, time doing research, time reading books for blurbs, introductions, and reviews, or short author questions. It doesn’t cover my pays-the-bills work either. This is just publishing industry stuff. “Answered pub industry email” can be anything from a request for an interview, to contract queries, to reading anthology invites, to answering questions about dates… and the list goes on.




Answered pub industry email. Wrote 2100 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. Googlegroup posts. Personal blog post. (2100)





Answered pub industry email. Wrote 2200 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (4300)


Answered pub industry email. Skype Interview with Adventures in Scifi Publishing podcast. Client call. Blog post. Wrote 2300 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (6600)


Answered pub industry email. Editing for a client. Wrote 2700 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (9300)


Answered pub industry email. Editing for a client. Art notes for novella. Skype interview. Wrote 3000 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (12300)


Convention prep. A whole lot of it. Editing for a client. Layout proof. Wrote 2300 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (14600)


OryCon. Panels. Publisher meeting. Back cover copy of a book. Wrote 1700 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (16300)


OryCon. Panels. Publisher meeting. Shattered Shields release party. Wrote 1300 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (17600)





OryCon. Panels. Powell’s group signing. Answered pub industry email.


Answered pub industry email. Proofed final of Dreams of a Thousand Young. Editing for a client. Anthology admin stuff. Wrote 2200 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (19800)


Answered pub industry email. AIP Blog post. Personal Blog post. Editing for a client. Anthology admin stuff. Wrote 2500 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (22300)


Answered pub industry email. Baen Universe Podcast. Processed proof notes for FROST. Wrote 2200 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (24500)


Answered pub industry email. Processed edits on an anthology story and returned it to the editor. Anthology admin stuff. Wrote 2300 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (26800)


Answered pub industry email. Reoutline act four of NLML. Wrote 3200 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (30000)


Answered pub industry email. Article for Wrote 2400 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (32400)





Wrote 2600 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (35000)


Answered pub industry email. Invoiced a client. AIP Blog post. Reoutline act four of NLML. Reading at University Bookstore. Wrote 2600 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (37500)


Answered pub industry email. Wrote an SF Signal Mind Meld. Invoiced a client. Wrote 2500 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (40000)


Answered pub industry email. Contract negotiation x2. Author picture photoshoot. Wrote 3500 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (43500)


Answered pub industry email. Signed contract to be a special guest at the 2015 Gamehole convention. Signed contract to be a GoH at LepreCon 2015. Wrote 2500 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (46000)


Answered pub industry email. Wrote 4180 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (50180)


Answered pub industry email. Article for SFWA blog. Wrote 620 words on NEVER LET ME LEAVE. (50800)





Updated AIP store. AIP Blog post. FROST last minute details.


Answered pub industry email.


Answered pub industry email. Wrote 1850 words for Girls on Games chapter.


Answered pub industry email. Answered an interview.


Answered pub industry email. Answered convention survey. Blurb for a novel.


Answered pub industry email. Answered SFWA survey. Answered HWA survey.


Answered pub industry email. Back cover copy. Paid PA.





Answered pub industry email. Update AIP website. Wrote 101 words for Girls on Games chapter.


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Jennifer Brozek: Writerholic

Jennifer Brozek is a multi-talented, award-winning author, editor, and tie-in writer. She is the author of the Never Let Me Sleep, and The Last Days of Salton Academy, both of which were nominated for the Bram Stoker Award. Her BattleTech tie-in novel, The Nellus Academy Incident, won a Scribe Award. Her editing work has netted her a Hugo Award nomination as well as an Australian Shadows Award for Grants Pass. Jennifer’s short form work has appeared in Apex Publications, and in anthologies set in the worlds of Valdemar, Shadowrun, V-Wars, and Predator. Jennifer is also the Creative Director of Apocalypse Ink Productions, and was the managing editor of Evil Girlfriend Media and assistant editor for Apex Book Company.

Jennifer has been a freelance author, editor, tie-in writer for over ten years after leaving her high paying tech job, and she’s never been happier. She keeps a tight schedule on her writing and editing projects and somehow manages to find time to volunteer for several professional writing organizations such as SFWA, HWA, and IAMTW. She shares her husband, Jeff, with several cats and often uses him as a sounding board for her story ideas. Visit Jennifer’s worlds at

"I see story ideas. All the time. They're everywhere. Just walking around like normal ideas. They don't know they're stories."