Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Almost done with being sick!

I got sick Saturday. A combination of cold & flu & massive allergy attack. Somewhere in there I think I also picked up a case of food poisoning as well :-P

Today is the first day I haven't spent more in bed than out of bed, which is nice, because I usually don't get sick for more than a day or two, so being down for like four in a row was complete misery (and I felt it too).

Now I can get back to work!

Monday, April 24, 2017

Saturday, April 22, 2017

This is Why I Suck at Marketing

So, just read a story today by an author who has 'New York Times Bestselling Author and USA Today Bestselling Author' branded on all of their books. All of their books.

And they've only been writing since last year, and they don't really have that many reviews on most of their stuff. Now the story wasn't bad, really, it was just all action and not much plot and minor character development. We just go from action scene to action scene, and the book is probably about 55K words long, so it doesn't get to the point of actually being too much action.

But still, I'm looking at this going, 'how did this person make both of those lists?' Especially when they don't say which of their books made the list.

Well some internet searching and I found it. They got into this huge mega box set deal, and there were some good authors in the set (over twenty authors in the box set total). The entire set made the bestseller lists. So yeah, technically he's a bestselling author now.

I would never have thought to put something like that down.

It's like all of those authors who write their bios in third person like someone else is talking about them, or who go through their reviews on the page, pull out a few, and put them up in the 'editorial review' section. Hell, I've gotten reviews from third parties, completely unsolicited, and I've never put them in there.

I really do not understand marketing for ebooks, or just books in general, I guess.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Has Amazon been putting DRM on my books without my Permission?

I don't set DRM on my ebooks. Some people are claiming that Amazon is now applying DRM to all ebooks, even those where the author has requested it not be set. Are any of you seeing this with my ebooks?

Monday, April 17, 2017

So yes, that Harem story

I finished one, and will eventually (probably next month) be putting out a second one. They are under a different name however: Jan Stryvant. Why? Because while I actually enjoy harem fiction, (I think the E. William Brown stories are some of the best) it's not really what I normally write, and well 'Brand Recognition' I guess you would say. I don't mind people knowing that I wrote it, however I want people to understand that this is something different from what I normally write.
And yes, I'm sure there are people who are going to hate me for writing it. Again, different name, so they can just ignore it and not worry about stumbling on it by mistake.

Anyway, here's the link for it on Amazon: Shadow, by Jan Stryvant 

Let me know what you think, and if you like it, write a nice review and tell all your friends.

I may make a gmail address and possibly a blog page for that author name, so if people want to talk about it, they have a place to go. Without having to know my real name.

Politics and checking your six

Now I normally do not talk about politics in this blog, because I figure that none of you are coming here for that, and I don't blame you. I am actually an incredibly politically aware person, and once upon a time I was also extremely active in politics. For a number of reasons I have tried to back off from a lot of it (which I won't discuss here - though some of it has been mentioned elsewhere), but the sad truth is, you can no more get away from politics than you can get away from gravity. Because it's always there.

Right now we are seeing a lot of unrest in the country I live in (the USA). It's not the first time this has happened in my life (I was born in '59), I remember the riots and the terrorists we had in this country in the 60's and 70's. These people murdered others, blew up things, did all sorts of very heinous crimes, even if some of them are now 'celebrated' people, you must remember that they are murderers. They did in fact kill people, and it's only because of really bizarre political dealings that they are not now in jail. Though some of it I think is due to certain people wanting to 'forget' and 'put it all behind them.'

Well, I hate to say it, but the truth of the matter is that we are heading back to those times, and probably worse. The 'Battle of Berkley' wasn't an aberration, it was a sign of things to come. None of this has peaked yet, far from it. Now that those being preyed upon have woken up and started fighting back (and winning) you can expect the people leading the attacks to start bringing nastier weapons than the bricks, pipes, bottles, and clubs that they have been using since last summer.

In most of the state I live in, the government has already chosen a side in all of this, which is why when the violent types crash the rallies and the protests, the police disappear rather quickly, or just watch and don't get involved. People are noticing that, and they're not very happy about it either. After all, we pay the police to stop these things, not to encourage it.

I would tell all of you this summer to rethink any travel plans you may have. Especially for when the weather gets hotter and tempers get shorter. Go look up what months we had the worst riots in the 60's and 70's, and what kinds of places they were in. Look at where they are now as well. If you live in one of those kinds of places, you might want to think about moving. And if you're planning on visiting any of them, I would change those plans.

There are very dark clouds on the horizon. If you don't want to get sucked into this against your will and become a victim, now is the time to start thinking about it.

Sunday, April 09, 2017

What I've been doing...

So, because a bunch of you all wrote me (or responded on Patreon) I took one of my old stories that I wrote for my own enjoyment years ago, and spent a week re-writing, editing, re-arranging, and generally just spending 14 hour days on.
I've now given it to a bunch of folks to read (and hopefully they'll get back to me soon) because I want their opinion on it. It's hard to step back from something you wrote a long time ago and be sure it's good enough to put out. And as this is long (it weighs in at almost 150K words) I suspect it will be a few days before I hear anything, (well one person finished it and said they loved it, so I'm hopeful).
And yeah, it's a harem type story. The story is about a guy who suffers something terrible as a child and develops super powers because of it. He then uses his powers to hunt down and punish those people and others like them. Until one day he starts to wonder about life, and the meaning of his, and decides maybe it's time to start over.
The prologue covers that, and is the set up for the rest of the story, as he decides to go learn about all of those things he's missed. Of course, because of who and what he is, it isn't going to be easy, and while he's not evil, he's not exactly good either. If you're a big fan of the 'super hero code' that the comic books use, you'll probably hate this story, because this guy isn't like that, and neither is his story.

If I get enough thumbs up from folks on it, I will publish it. It will be under a pen name, which I'll mention here. The reason for not putting it out under my name is that it isn't exactly the kind of thing I'm known for writing (and people these days don't like you straying all over the map), so using a pen name will signal everyone that it's something different and not to be shocked at the blatant sex and swearing and violence.

For now, I'm just waiting to hear what people say about it, while I go to work on another (and somewhat) different one. Then I'll go back to working on the stuff that I said I'd be doing. If the harem stuff does well, I'll do more of it. For now it's just a question of wait and see.