Jennifer Brozek | All posts tagged 'review-of-me'

A Decade in Review

by Jennifer Brozek 28. December 2019 11:34

How does one review a decade of growth, change, expansion, and experience in a single career? Much less in an industry like the publishing industry? I suppose by starting with some of the stats from 2010 – 2019. Note, this is an imperfect list of stats. It doesn’t mention the number of words written, the stories submitted then rejected, the novels written and trunked, the journals, articles, and blog posts. But, really, you’ve got to start somewhere. That is what I’ve done.

  • Short stories published: 65
  • Fiction collections published: 4
  • Novellas published: 5
  • Novels published: 11
  • Omnibuses published: 2
  • Podcasts produced and published: 2
  • Comic books published: 1
  • Anthologies edited: 16
  • RPG books contributed to: 7
  • RPG books written/co-written: 6
  • Award nominations: 18 (including 2 Bram Stoker awards and a Hugo award)
  • Awards won: 7 (including an AU Shadows award, an ENnie award, an Origins award, and a Scribe award)

Gotta admit, I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished. In 2010, if you’d told me that one day I’d be an internationally published author and editor who’d been nominated for both the Bram Stoker and the Hugo award, I would’ve laughed at you and said it was a nice idea. I thought those things were so far out of my reach that I couldn’t imagine it. If you’d told me that I’d get to write for some of my favorite non-RPG properties like VWars, Valdemar, and Predator, I would’ve wondered what you’d been drinking. Stuff like that didn’t happen to me.

Then again, I didn’t know I was going to start my own publishing house.
…Or serve a term as a Director-at-Large of SFWA.
…Or volunteer for the HWA.
…Or be a Guest of Honor at ten different conventions, including conventions in Sweden and Finland.
…Or get an agent after I’d given up the search.

In truth, this is no real way to quantify a decade of my career in a meaningful manner that gives the scope of “everything.” I’ve always been ambitious when it comes to my career. I’ve got plans for the next decade. I’m sure they’ll change. But, that’s all right.

I’ll leave you with some lessons I’ve learned along the way.

  • Share the love. Publishing is not a zero sum game. No one has to lose for you to win. Eventually we will work together on a project.
  • Default to being kind. Publishing is a small industry.
  • Write what you love and what you want to read. My greatest success has come from settling in to write exactly what I want to write and to love what I do.
  • Figure out what kind of writing career you want. Casual? Part-time? Full-time? Just hang out with other writers? It’s all good. The sooner you realize what you actually want, the better it will be for you.
  • You are allowed to change your mind and to change direction. Shift gears on the type of story telling you do. Flash? Podcasts? Epic novel series? One-off books? Tie-in work?
  • You are allowed to stop. To quit. To take a break. To rest.
  • You are allowed to start again. No one is going to take away your writing card.
  • There is no one path to a successful writing career. YOU determine what makes you a success. Self-pub? Big 5? Hybrid? It’s all fair game. This is one of the most exciting times in the publishing arena. Nothing is off-limits.


Of course, the last decade wouldn’t have been as successful as it’s been without the Husband’s support. He helped make it all possible. For that, I am ever-grateful.

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My 2019 Scorecard

by Jennifer Brozek 18. December 2019 14:21

In the annual tradition of every freelance writer’s need to justify themselves, here is my 2019 Scorecard. How did I do at what I do most? Overall, pretty good, I think. I succeeded more than I failed. Though, I didn’t complete everything I wanted to get done.

Short Story Submissions: 7

  • Acceptances: 5
  • Rejections: 1
  • Pending: 1

This is a very good look for me. Though, in truth, 5 of the 7 short stories were commissioned. I rarely have time to write for markets that are not guaranteed.

New Words Written: 125,130

  • Short: 24,130
  • Long: 101,000

That equates to 4 new short stories, 1 new RPG project, 1 novella, and 1 novel. In the grand scheme of things, this about 60% of what I normally write. However, life was not as kind to me as it had been in the past. The death of loved ones makes writing hard.

Published Projects: 7

  • 2 novels: BattleTech: Iron Dawn and Shadowrun: Makeda Red
  • 1 anthology: A Secret Guide to Fighting Elder Gods
  • 3 short stories: “Between a Corp and a Hard Place” (Shadowrun), “Written in Red” (Emberwind), “One Town at a Time” (Valdemar)
  • 1 podcast: ShadowBytes (Shadowrun)


Awards: 2

  • 1 Won: 2019 Rainforest Writers Inspirational Award.
  • 1 Nomination: To Fight the Black Wind - finalist for the 2019 Raven Award for Horror/Thriller novel.


Conventions Attended: 5
This is less than half of the number of conventions attended in 2018…by design. I attended 12 in 2018 and that was too much. That’s one of my goals for 2019 succeeded.

Goals for the Year: 6
Succeeded: 4

  • Fewer conventions attended.
  • Declutter the House.
  • Expand my Creative Horizons (Twitch game and Voice talent on the Dire Multiverse).
  • Continue focus on my physical health.


Failed: 2

  • Figure out my crafting situation (All the crafts are still languishing).
  • Curious Fictions (This failed. I didn’t want to keep it up and Ko-Fi was easier and more people have brightened my day with it.)


Next up, a look at the last decade. I think I’ve come a long way and I should celebrate that.

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Bubble & Squeek for 8 July 2019

by Jennifer Brozek 8. July 2019 13:12

Spending a lot of time with my head down and fingers on the keyboard. Turned in a couple of lingering projects including an Emberwind story and another Shadowrun novella.

Release: Shadowrun: Makeda Red has been released! I know this is old news, but I'm super happy with this book.

Podcast: ShadowBytes 04: Hey Jude. This one is called "Hey Jude" and you learn about this ork's background and one of her surprising hobbies.

Podcast: ShadowBytes 05: Hunger and the Hand that Feeds It. This is one of my favorite in the series. I think it really captures the fragility of life running the shadows.

Review: Skiffy and Fanty review: A Secret Guide to Fighting Elder Gods. They liked it.

Review: Tor.com review of A Secret Guide to Fighting Elder Gods – “Us and Ours” by Premee Mohamed. The snark is beautiful in this review.

Support: As always… if you appreciate my work and would like to support me, I love coffee. I am made of caffeine. This is the quickest way to brighten my day.

And a cat picture. Just because.

 

 

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Bubble & Squeek for 17 May 2019

by Jennifer Brozek 17. May 2019 11:26

I'm writing, editing, traveling, and working on sekrit projects won't be secret for much longer.  Here's a Bubble & Squeek for you. Reviews, Releases, Podcasts, and Interviews.

•    Interview: With No Wasted Ink about BattleTech: Iron Dawn.

•    Release: Here’s the How2Read link for all the different stores you can get A Secret Guide to Fighting Elder Gods

•    Release: Here’s the How2Read link for all the different stores you can get BattleTech: Iron Dawn.

•    Review: (Tor.com) Taking School Rivalries Seriously: Seanan McGuire’s “Away Game.” From A Secret Guide to Fighting Elder Gods.

•    Review: A new review of BattleTech: The Nellus Academy Incident.

•    Podcast: ShadowBytes #3: Non-Compliant. And you thought being a shadowrunner in the 6th World was hard. Try being an office worker.

•    Support: As always… if you appreciate my work and would like to support me, I love coffee. I am made of caffeine. This is the quickest way to brighten my day.

I love it when my kitties get into the corner kitty condo.
Here's Pharaoh (top) and Isis (inside).

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Bubble and Squeek for 18 Mar 2019

by Jennifer Brozek 18. March 2019 10:38

My Bubble & Squeek list got a little bit out of control this time. Still lots of fun stuff to read and enjoy while I work on Rogue Academy 2, BattleTech: Ghost Hour.

Fun: Still Alive - Frank Sinatra Big Band Swing Version (The 8-Bit Big Band). I like this. (YouTube link.)

Fun: TVTropes page for the Melissa Allen trilogy. It still thrills me to have my writing dissected on the TV Tropes website.

Podcast: Dire Multiverse, episode 3 – “Curiouser Still” Events take a heart-thumping turn when Ohmega, Kitty, and Lime just can’t leave well enough alone. Their curiosity lands them in a heap of garbage and carries them to the other side of the island in search of answers.

Podcast: ShadowBytes 02 – Chrome Holly. Except from DocWagon 19. Just a taste of some of the mysteries the High-Threat Response Team comes in contact with.

Review of me: Dreams of a Thousand Young. I love this. Can't tell if either reviewer actually liked the story (I think they did). The snark is strong within both reviews. Very spoiler-filled look at of my Lovecraftian novelette from JAZZ AGE CTHULHU.

Review of Captain Marvel: Captain Marvel is the Joyful Realization of a Woman Coming Into Her Power. I loved the hell out of this film and this article is a good summation of why. (Non-spoiler review.)

Shadowrun: Sprawl Stories, Vol 1 is out in trade paperback now! It includes DocWagon 19. Yes, I'm late to the party but, I have all year to celebrate Shadowrun's 30th anniversary.

StokerCon University: I will be teaching my “How to Pitch a Story” workshop at Stokercon in May. This was my standing room only workshop at WorldCon 2018. Thursday night.

 

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Bubble & Squeek for 11 Sep 2018

by Jennifer Brozek 11. September 2018 10:31

Article: From Bookwraiths Author Spotlight – Observations of an American Military Brat. “For most of America, “kids don’t act that way,” but on military bases and in military academies, they do.”

Interview: Community Outreach – Interview with Jennifer Brozek, Author Of BattleTech: The Nellus Academy Incident. I love Sarna.net. I really do.

Publication: “An Open Letter to the Family” is live in Uncanny Magazine’s Disabled People Destroy SF issue. I love this story, even thought it was really hard to write.

Review: To Fight the Black Wind reviewed by Uncaged Reviews. Short but sweet.

Reminder: For the North Coast Redwoods Writers Conference, I will be reading in Crescent City on Friday the 21st at 7pm and teaching two workshops (The Principles of Tie-In Fiction and How to Pitch a Story) on Saturday. There are still openings in both workshops and the reading is free.


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Bubble & Squeek for 3 May 2018

by Jennifer Brozek 3. May 2018 10:17

This weekend, I'll be at Crypticon in Sea-Tac with Apocalypse Ink Productions and on panels. I'm going to have all of my new releases with me as well as some of the old favorites and my convention only book. If you can't come see me, I hope you enjoy the weekend.

Article: To Write the Good Fight over on Jimbo's Awesome SFF Reviews. I like to have a foot in game reality to write a ’Mech Battle. I do it with a little help from my friends.

Interview: +1 to Writing on TripleCrit. All about me as an author and an editor. This fun interview was all about me shifting between the different publishing roles.

Interview: I've got a new interview on MyLifeMyBooksMyEscape about my Arkham Horror novella, To Fight the Black Wind. I get to talk about my favorite scene in this one.

Interview with Loren Rhoads: 5 Questions for Jennifer Brozek. All about Arkham Horror: To Fight the Black Wind. This one touches on how my own dreams brought a bit of reality to the novella.

Released: Arkham Horror: To Fight the Black Wind has been released for almost a month now. Read the first chapter for free.

Review: From Jimbo’s Awesome SFF Reviews. It’s safe to say he liked BattleTech: The Nellus Academy Incident.

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Bubble & Squeek for 14 Dec 2016

by Jennifer Brozek 14. December 2016 09:19

I'm working on revisions for the Sekrit Project Alex extras and the final tie-in story for 2016. They both have fiddly bits to get correct. So, here's a Bubble & Squeek for you.

All I want for my Birthday (and Christmas for that matter). Please consider buying one of my books for yourself or as a gift for someone else. It helps keep my cats in kibble and me working on the fiction you know and love.

Article: On the Qwillery – The Perfect Line in the Sand on why zombies are the perfect kind of monster and why we used them so much.

ebook Release: The kindle version of THE LAST DAYS OF SALTON ACADEMY is live! Here is the Barnes and Noble link.

Interview: On Wag the Fox focused around THE LAST DAYS OF SALTON ACADEMY and YA fiction.

Interview: On Ginger Nuts of Horror. This was one long, meaty interview filled with intriguing questions I’ve never had to answer before.

Release: TEMPEST, All-New Tales of Valdemar. I've got my second story of Hadara and Kitha in here. This is the fourth Valdemar anthology I've written for. I'm still pinching myself at how lucky I am I get to play in Mercedes Lackey's Valdemar world.

Review: Ginger Nuts of Horror reviewed
THE LAST DAYS OF SALTON ACADEMYIt doesn’t look like the reviewer liked it very much. But they are correct in saying the book was written for a different age group. (I much prefer these kinds of reviews. :) )

And a picture of Mena being oh-so-dignified. I love this picture of her.

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Bubble & Squeek for 9 November 2016

by Jennifer Brozek 9. November 2016 13:30

Here's a Bubble & Squeek for you. I'm going to keep on writing. There's not much else I can do right now.

Article: On Risingshadow. The Apocalypse Has Come and Gone. I talk about where The Last Days of Salton Academy is set.

Article: On Ragnablog. The Idea That Won’t Leave You Alone. I talk about what prompted me to write a YA zombie novel when I don't like zombies.

Article: I got mentioned on Kirkus Reviews in 13 Horror Books to Put You in the Mood for Halloween for The Last Days of Salton Academy! The fact that I got mentioned in Kirkus has me over the moon. Then, to be in such good company...

Ingress: In completely non-writing news, I got mentioned by a major Ingress character on his blog. So, that was exciting. I also was awarded a really hard badge to get: the EAW badge.

Review: Slap Happy Fun Time reviewed The Last Days of Salton Academy and really liked it – “…this is the kind of novel that you simply don't read. It consumes you, it demands your attention just like a great novel should.” 

Review: Goodreads review of The Last Days of Salton Academy – “Gothic zombie book.”

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Happy Book Release Day to Me!

by Jennifer Brozek 25. October 2016 11:43

The Last Days of Salton Academy has been released! This YA horror novel is getting some love.

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Ragnarok Publications

It's referred to as 'The Outbreak,' and it happened just over three months ago, casting the world (or at least this part of it) into a state of powerlessness and chaos. The Salton Academy has become a rare sanctuary for those few students who remained behind over fall break.

As winter approaches, cracks are revealed in the academy's foundations as it's discovered someone is stealing food, another is taking advantage of a captive audience, and yet others have banded together and are thinking about mutiny, even murder. One thing's for certain — a supply run must be made soon, or everyone will starve before winter's end.

Oh yes, and then there’s the matter of the headmaster’s son and his undead dog…



The Last Days of Salton Academy is a dark, twisted rollercoaster of a book. Jennifer Brozek knocks it out of the park.” — Stephen Blackmoore, author of City of the Lost and Broken Souls

“If Lord of the Flies had occurred during a zombie outbreak, it would read something like this. A bloody good tale you can really sink your teeth into.” — Timothy W. Long, Author of the Z-Risen series.

The Last Days of Salton Academy is a delightful character study which combined boarding school antics with the survival horror of a post-apocalypse thriller. The characters are fresh, the dynamics interesting, and the story engaging from beginning to end. It is a YA story I heartily recommend.” — C.T. Phipps, author of Esoterrorism and Wraith Knight

“As much as I love all things undead, what kept me turning pages wasn’t the zombie horde, but something far more horrible: the students and staff of a pretentious prep school. The Last Days of Salton Academy is compulsively readable—I devoured it in one sitting. With a cast of all-too-believable characters and a set of ever-ratcheting disasters, this novel is guaranteed to keep you up past your bedtime.” — Wendy N. Wagner, author of Starspawn and Skinwalkers

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Latest Releases

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Shadowrun: Makeda Red
Buy Now.

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BattleTech: Iron Dawn
Rogue Academy 1
Buy Now.

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A Secret Guide to
Fighting Elder Gods

Buy Now.


To Fight the Black Wind
Arkham Horror novella

Amazon | FFG


The Prince of Artemis V
All ages comic book

Amazon


The Nellus Academy Incident
YA Battletech
novel
Amazon | DriveThruRPG | B&N


DocWagon 19
Shadowrun novella
Amazon | BattleShop
DriveThruRPG


The Karen Wilson Chronicles
More InformationBuy Now.


Apocalypse Girl Dreaming
Fiction collection
Amazon | B&N |
Evil Girlfriend Media

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Jazz Age Cthulhu
Amazon | B&N |
Innsmouth Free Press


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 jenniferbrozek.com.

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