I've finished MAKEDA RED. I've edited 3 novels and I'm on a novella. I'm starting to prep for WorldCon and Tracon—both of my schedules require research. Life is slowing down. It is. But this is the calm before the storm.
Article: On the Semiotic Standard: The Collective: Bringing Books to Film. I didn't cheat and say Melissa Allen. I talked about my true love... THE DARK TOWER.
Awesome: The daughter of a friend has just cosplayed one of my characters: Melissa Allen. Achievement unlocked!
Review: Nice review for the World of Shadows anthology from Forgotten Tomes.
In the SFWA section...
SFWA Chat Hour about game writers... wherein we talk about the background behind the decision to admit gamer writers.
Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America to Admit Game Writers. The actual guidelines.
Follow-up SFWA Admits Gamewriters, All Heck Breaks Loose, Film at 11.
No, the guidelines aren't perfect. Yes, we are looking at specific cases. Yes, it will take time. We will not be making a knee-jerk reaction to everything.
When I first got home from StokerCon, I wrote:
Home from StokerCon. I did not win a stoker award for my YA novel, NEVER LET ME SLEEP. John Dixon did for his, and he is a complete sweetie. But, I didn't walk away empty-handed. I got to see old friends like Lucy A. Snyder and Jonathan Maberry, meet new friends, pitch the Melissa Allen series to a producer, have an in-depth conversation with an agent, meet Gini Koch, got asked to write a short story, and finished red lining my Shadowrun novel. It was a good convention.
My thoughts haven’t changed. It was a good convention. It was the first time I’ve been thanked by a winner of a major award during their acceptance speech. Lucy gave me a shout out and I appreciate it.
However, I hate the Vegas strip. I can’t say I hate Vegas. I spent time with my friend Drake in the north end of Vegas and it was lovely, if hot and dry. You can buy a lot of house for a lot less money than you can in the Seattle area.
That said, I won’t ever move out of the Pacific Northwest if I can help it. Monday, when I was taking out the trash, I had an honest-to-goodness “Calvin and Hobbes Trash Moment.” I dropped the trash in the can, then stopped and realized how quiet it was. I could only hear birdsong. Not even cars at that moment. The sky was filled with light grey clouds, bringing a depth the world around me. I could actually fill the moisture in the air. After 5 days in Vegas, it was exactly what I needed to truly appreciate where I live.
I’m home now. I’m catching up on email and other notices.
Here’s a really great review of NEVER LET ME from Amazon. This is the kind of review that makes my heart sing.
Also, my location supplement, Colonial Gothic: Roanoke Island, has been nominated for d-Infinity Independent Game Awards for best RPG supplement. I’m not going to win. It’s one of those click to vote popularity things but I’m happy to have been nominated.
It is all Shadowrun all the time right now. I'm deep into MAKEDA RED and that's pretty much all I'm doing right now. So, here's some links for you and a chance for you to win a set of Melissa Allen audiobooks.
REVIEW: Here's a great review of NEVER LET ME. I really appreciate reviews like this.
REVIEW: Here's a really good review of APOCALYPSE GIRL DREAMING. I love the fact that some of the stories stick with her.
REVIEW: Here's a great review of DECISION POINTS. The reviewer says that my story, "The Prince of Artemis V," hit a home run.
SALE: Apocalypse Ink Productions is having a sale of my Karen Wilson Chronicles books! If you were waiting to get any of the individual trade paperbacks, Now is the time to get them. After May 1st, they are gone for good. Karen Wilson Chronicles Trade Paperback Last Chance Sale. 4 Trade for $30.
AUDIOBOOKS: All three Melissa Allen audiobooks are available. You can listen to NEVER LET ME SLEEP, NEVER LET ME LEAVE, and NEVER LET ME DIE, read by the marvelous Elizabeth Evans. Also, email me at gaaneden at gmail dot com for a chance to win all three audiobooks!
So much writing on Project Joe! Other than my computer setup exploding on me recently, requiring me to get a new keyboard and to vacuum the dust from the computer, my life is mostly about writing and editing. And petting demanding cats.
EVENT - READING: I will be reading at the University Bookstore in Seattle on Jan 26th. Please come! There will be cookies and book giveaways and I'll be reading from NEVER LET ME which Publisher's Weekly calls "a strong, entertaining tale."
And now back to your irregularly scheduled Bubble & Squeek.
Article: MIND MELD: The Growth and Future of SF/F. An interesting question.
Article: Nightmare Magazine – The H Word: Shifting Away From the Common. I talk about what I enjoy about shapeshifters that aren't werewolves.
Blog: I have a guest blog over at Jim Hines’s Blog site about revealing personal details in your writings. I didn't manage to post about this more than once. So, here it is again.
Event: I am a workshop leader at Foolscap on Feb 5th. I'm teaching a class on writing series called "Combat in the Land of Forgotten Details."
Review: Publisher's Weekly reviewed NEVER LET ME. It's a good review. I'm happy with it. I don't even mind the quibble.
SALE: COLONIAL GOTHIC: LOST TALES. This is one of those "oops, I have a fiction collection" sales. Totally unexpected but very happy for it.
SALE: MAKEDA RED. I'm running the shadows again. This time in novel form. I've wanted to write a Shadowrun novel for ages. Now I get to. MAKEDA RED stars the protagonist from my Shadowrun short story, "Rune's Avatar Cafe."
When it comes to year in review posts, there’s two ways for me to look at it: What did I do? Did I enjoy myself? The short version answer to these two questions is: A lot. Yes.
Being a full-time freelancer, I need personal metrics that keep me going. To let me know I didn’t just spin my wheels. To know that I have done good. I can’t rely on money to tell me whether or not I’ve been productive. The publishing industry is so weird about money and timing. It’s feast or famine… mostly famine. Even if you’re working all the time.
So, to answer the second question first. Did I enjoy myself? On the whole, yes. I’m happier that I’ve ever been. Yes, there were hard times. Yes, I really do understand “leveling up to a better (harder) class of problem” thing. And yes, not everything was a success. But, by and large, I had the best time.
As for the first question of: What did I do? I keep a daily summary log. I need to. I must schedule myself and I must know what I’ve done and when I did it. Thus, I can quantify my freelance year like so:
- Writing: I wrote 110,000 words of new fiction. This does not count any blog posts or articles written.
- Editing: I edited 10 novels, 4 novellas, 1 anthology, and 90 EGM.Shorts flash fiction pieces.
- Submissions: I had 5 of 9 short stories accepted. Not bad. Just didn’t have a lot of time to submit short fiction around.
- Published: 4 novels, 1 novella, 1 fiction collection, 1 anthology, and 5 short stories. That is a lot. A whole lot.
- Email: Answered email 320 days out of the year. This is much worse than last year. I answered email 268 days in 2014. I had hoped to do less email. I failed.
- New Positions: Managing Editor of Evil Girlfriend Media and voted in as a SFWA Director-at-Large. I am still the Creative Director of Apocalypse Ink Productions.
- Awards: I had 4 nominations (Scribe x2, an ENnie, and a Hugo). 1 win (Scribe for best YA tie-in novel for The Nellus Academy Incident).
- Reading: I read 41 novels (mostly for pleasure). Not bad, given my schedule.
- Vacation: Took 23 days off to do nothing. This is better than I did last year. This averages 2 days off a month. Though, most of these came in the last third of the year.
Honestly, reading this list makes me both proud and tired. I already know I will be doing a lot less of some and a lot more of another in 2016 but that’s for another post in a week, next year.
I am home from OryCon and SF Authorfest 9. I had a fabulous time. It was so much fun. In lieu of content, here is a Bubble and Squeek.
Article: Mind Meld: More Children’s Movies that Scared the Crap Out of Us.
Podcast: LIMETOWN. If you aren't listening to this podcast, you are missing out. It reminds me of American Elsewhere and Night Vale.
Review: A Lovely review of Jazz Age Cthulhu and "Dreams of a Thousand Young" from Hauntology. I really am fond of this novelette.
For the Melissa Allen section of Bubble and Squeek...
Article: Over on Wag the Fox: Characters with a mind of their own. AKA why the sequel, Never Let Me Leave, exists.
Article: Why a Bat? Over on Damien Walter's blog, I discuss why Melissa Allen use a baseball bat when fighting monsters.
Podcast: SF Spotlight Radio from 14 Nov 2015. I talk about a lot of things. Mostly the Melissa Allen series.
Book two of the Melissa Allen series, NEVER LET ME LEAVE, has been released! I'm really happy with the series. The first book, NEVER LET ME SLEEP, is getting great reviews.
What would you do if you found yourself locked in an underground lab with a murderous alien hunting you? Melissa Allen and her new friends know exactly how it feels. With no help from the outside and time running out, it’s up to Melissa to keep herself and the other teens safe. How can she do that when she’s not sure who she can trust?
Someone in the lab helped that alien escape. Someone human.
NEVER LET ME LEAVE almost didn't happen. This is why it did.
This is a big Bubble and Squeek today. A lot stuff came in all at once.
Article: For writers on the SFWA Blog. How do you ask for blurb?
Article: I talk about my love of gargoyles on My Favorite Things.
Article: SFSignal MIND MELD: Second Chances. I talk about why I gave Stephen R. Donaldson a second chance.
Article: Over at Ragnarok Publications, I talk about how I used my anger to fuel my writing career in Dreamer No More.
Interview: Permuted Press asked me some great questions about NEVER LET ME SLEEP. We touch on body image and mental illness.
Interview: Over at Eating Authors I get to talk about ramen. Really, really good ramen.
Review: I get a nice shout out in this review of NOT OUR KIND from the Eviscerating Pen (what a lovely name!).
Pre-Order: Remember, you can pre-order NEVER LET ME SLEEP and the hard copy Melissa Allen compilation NEVER LET ME. Also, if you missed it, here's a post that's all about my fabulous covers.
SFSignal: I gotta say it. I love seeing my name on SFSignal and in such good company, too.
It's been an amazing couple of weeks. Really amazing.
Awards: I've been nominated for two different Scribe Awards. One for best tie-in short story. One for best tie-in YA novel.
Conventions: I've been named one of Gen Con's Industry Insider Featured Presenters. I'm really excited about this.
Election: I've been voted in as one of the new Directors-at-Large for SFWA along with Matthew Johnson. I will take office on July 1, 2015.
Interview: I've been interviewed by Katie Teller, focusing on my Dark Quest Books anthologies.
Review: Thomas Gondolfi of Scifimonkeys.com reviewed CALLER UNKNOWN and gave it an "Unexpected A-". He had some interesting points to make.
I'm deep in the throes of writing NEVER LET ME DIE, Melissa Allen #3, so I'm not checking Twitter or Facebook right now. However, lots has happened. Here's a Bubble & Squeek for you.
Award: I was nominated for a Hugo Award. This is both exciting and terrifying.
Convention: I've been added to OrcaCon's Special Guest lineup. I'm also on their kickstarter with a custom game of Katanas & Trenchcoats for you and four of your friends.
Interview: I was interviewed by Douglas Hawk for his 7 Questions series. Want to know what my workspace looks like?
Publication Release: DocWagon 19 is out the door! Get it here: Amazon | BattleShop | DriveThruRPG
Recommendation: Horrorstor by Grady Hendrix is one of the best, messed up horror books I’ve read in a long time. I will never look at a large home store the same ever again.
Recommendation: Science STYLE - Taylor Swift Acapella Parody. I just really liked this video.
Review: Goodreads review of Chimera Incarnate.
Review: Goodreads review of DocWagon 19.
Sale: I sold The Last Days of the Salton Academy to Ragnarok Publications! Yay!