Thursday, September 03, 2020

I think I'm Done with Social Media

 I dumped facebook today. I'll probably still post any announcements that I got there. But it's no guarantee.

So if you want to be sure, either start watching my blogs or get on my mailing list.

This has been a rough year for me. There were a number of family issues and other problems. I couldn't write for most of the year (I was either too busy, too stressed, or just didn't care). I've got half a dozen abandoned novels sitting on my computer that probably will never be finished. The new story was only supposed to be an 8K word short, and now it's 2 books 130k or so and there's more to come. In fact if I can start giving a damn again, I may start writing it today. 

I don't like getting driveby reviews from people who are just trying to hurt my sales because they feel taking me down builds them up. I've been getting that shit for years now, but it's finally starting to annoy me. Yeah, sometimes I bitch about stuff. It's only natural. But when people start piling on, I realized that it's time for me to go.

So I think I'm done with social media. It's not helping me, it's just bringing me down. Maybe I'll update my patreon to put up a weekly chat session or something for all of my patreons, if people still want to reach out.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

I have a new book coming out under my Jan Stryvant name.

It's in presale now, but it will go live on the 1st of September. Meet Dan, Dan grew up in Granite Bay, the middle child in a very rich family. But after the family moved into the city, things started going wrong for them, and now they've gotten even worse for Dan.

Dan's Inferno, Book I: Cursed!

And cover:


(Blogger is being forced by Google to change their interface at user level, and man does the new UI suck)

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Take Two has a new cover

 Some of you may have noticed that Take Two now has a new cover. This is because my regular artist really didn't like the cover that I had on it, and did a new one for me, for free! (He's a great guy). 

So for those who haven't seen it, here it is:

Take Two (link)

Thursday, July 23, 2020

What's Going On?

I've begun to emerge from the funk that my life has been in for the last five or so months. A lot happened since the end of last year, I finished a series (Valens Legacy) that had consumed two and a half years of my life (And it's really not done, there's a possibility of a series being bandied about in Hollywood). The lawsuit got very heated and hectic and expensive during that time. It's actually now finally over after like the 6th of this month (that's when the ability for the other side to enter an appeal expired).
Then there was my mother's failing health and eventual passing. Which makes my cat getting cancer and dying the month before seem like a minor deal (even if it wasn't to me). A few other minor legal issues that I've been putting off dealing with, the need to take a vacation, a -real- vacation, but not being able to because of the current state of affairs (and also having my once a year vacation canceled and losing a lot of money on airfare when it was).

So yeah, been a few rough spots there. Thank the good lord that those are all in the past.

Going forward, I am working on a plan to get ALL of the Portals of Infinity series recorded under one artist (or perhaps a man/woman team). This won't be cheap, because it's over 70 hours long at this point (it'll probably cost around thirty grand). I need to write an addition 30K words or so to make this happen, for legal reasons.

You see, I want to combine books 1 & 2 and books 3 & 4 into two recordings instead of the current four, because they each run about 5-6 hours in length. Back when I created those audiobooks, short books were okay, Audible didn't discriminate against books under 10 hours. However now they do, they've changed the way the market works completely. But I can't just put them together because the people at ACX are assholes. And I have to go through ACX. Also their contracts are 7 years long and they do tend to play fast and loose with the contract terms. (Note above 'need to hire a lawyer' comment).

Another reason to re-record the older books is that first I'd be on the third VA (Voice Artist) for the series, and that's just not fair to the listeners. Second, I want to increase the quality of all the recordings. Some are not apparently up to the level they should be. I realize that I'll probably not make back the money on the first four books when I redo those. I may make back the money on the fifth one. The rest, as they've never been recorded I expect to make the money back on.

Portals of Infinity was the first series I ever turned into an audiobook, and it was still a new frontier when I did it. The rules have changed drastically since then and costs have gone up a lot while royalties have dropped significantly. However I've learned a lot in the process so I'm hopeful that going forward things will improve.

On the story front I actually have several things I'm working on, and there's a bit of juggling going on. I have to do the 30K words mentioned above. I have a new series under my pen name in the offing. Results of that will probably be seen in September. I have a sequel to Take Two that's being worked on, though it's been pushed to spot 'b' in my queue now. There's also a space opera thing I've been messing with for a while now. I'm debating a rewrite on it, but I need to think about that. It'd be under my name and not the pen name. At least I think it will. There's a bunch of shorts I need to write as well, for a number of different things.

I don't know if I'll be able to get these on a schedule. I used to work like that but I developed some bad habits in the last year. We'll see if I can get back to that.

Oh, and as long as Consequences does well, there will be a book #10.

So yes, a lot of work. 

Thanks to all of you for being fans.

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Today's Question:

If someone sold Portals of Infinity T-Shirts, would you want them? What about other series?

(and as an update, POI #9 is at the editor, the cover art is in Progress. Take Two: Encore is in progress. 'Everyday Including Holidays' the next book in the Valens Legacy - it's going to be a bridge book of sorts - is in the concept stages with some writing done).

Monday, June 29, 2020

I'm Curious...

Okay, time for another question on things that your humble author/narrator is curious about.
What book that I have written would you want a nice (leatherbound) copy of?

Saturday, June 20, 2020

Another question for everyone this week:

Who is your favorite author? (Other than me)
Kinda curious as to who else you all like to read.

Saturday, June 06, 2020

More Questions!

I thought I'd post a few questions here, one every week or so, to get people's minds off of things. Originally it was just cause I figured people were bored at home. But then things got crazy the other week and I just really didn't want to get lost in that mess. Plus as I have mentioned elsewhere, my Mother passed. (It wasn't unexpected, and no it wasn't Covid either).

So now that I've put a little time between me and then I thought I'd start asking some questions, just out of curiosity. Here's this week's:

Out of the books of mine you've read, Who is your favorite character?

Friday, May 22, 2020

Just an update, because I'm getting questions.

Just an update, because I'm getting questions.

Yes, the lawsuit did eat into my time, especially at the end there. Also, after nearly two and a half years of writing about a hundred hours a week (not kidding, 9am to 1am 6 days a week, and half that on Sundays), I needed a break. It did go on a bit longer than expected however.

  • Right now I'm working on the following novels: POI #9, working title: Consequences. It's over 1/4th done.
  • The sequel to Take Two. Working title: Take Two - Encore.
  • A short that may turn into a novella or possible a novel: Cursed.
  • A 'bridge' book for the Valens Legacy to tie into a follow on series. I thought this would be a regular novel, but I'm starting to think it will be a compilation of shorts and novellas. Working Title: Everyday Including Holidays.
  • There's also a book that I was working on and set aside for a while, it's the start of a short multibook series (probably around 3 to 5 books, but still not sure) working title: Wolfhounds (space opera).

Unfortunately I had to go to NY last week for a week (Family issues) those issues are by no means resolved, though I don't think they're going to go on for much longer. I don't know if I'll have to go back or not.

So, yes, there's a lot in the pipeline and I'm trying to get myself back into a 5 to 10 thousand words a day habit, so I can start getting those things out. I'd like to thank all of you for your patience in waiting for more books, I appreciate it very much. Your support has meant a lot to me. It's just been a rough year, but clear skies are on the horizon. It's just a matter of them getting here.

-John Van Stry, May 22nd 2020

Friday, May 15, 2020

Saturday, May 02, 2020

A Question for ya.

Would you rather get a short story that is exclusive to people who sign up for my email list, or a short novel that is available to buy somewhere else?

This is of course, for people signing up for my email list. Basically the choices are: A short story that you can only get from being on the list, or a free copy of a shorter work that is also for sale.