COUNTING DOWN THE STORM A Novella by D. Ryan Leask
For two days the storm has taken over the city, and two people's lives. A man convinces himself that his life is worthless when his lover leaves him for another man. Alone and depressed, he allows his life to sink into the bowels of civilization. When a wife and mother discovers that her husband is having an affair she abandons logic and gives in to the perilous abyss of jealousy and revenge.
Now Available FOR FREE at:
¦Goodreads - For All E-Readers ¦Smashwords - For All E-Readers ¦Diesel E-Books Store - E-Pub ¦iTunes - For Your iPad/iPhone/Mac¦ ¦Kobo - For Your Kobo¦Sony - For Your Sony E-Reader¦Barnes & Noble - For Your Nook¦Direct From the Author - Mobi E-Pub or pdf¦
Showing posts with label Amazon. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Amazon. Show all posts

Monday, March 4, 2013

WTF Amazon? Self Published Author has to supply refund cause she is now trad pubbed?

FURTHER PROOF THAT AMAZON IS THE DEVIL

Author Jamie McGuire is being forced to provide refunds + cost differential from her self published book because a traditional publisher is now publishing it. For no reason Amazon has been encouraging customers to get a refund on Beautiful Disasters even though you can still get the version they paid for and it is past the time they are supposed to be able to get a refund.

Please read the two blogs below for more details!

Jamie McGuire beautiful disaster emails
*****Update
Self Pub Authors

I still don't like you Amazon!

Thanks for Reading


Thursday, September 15, 2011

Blog Tour With B.C. Young


I am pleased to announce that I am the first stop on a great author's Blog Tour!  He has published a volume of short stories entitled Unspoken Stories Volume 1.
B.C. YOUNG
He was kind enough to answer a few questions ---here--- and get in on a scavenger hunt ---here--- to win a free copy of Unspoken Stories!
You can also find a review of Unspoken Stories ---here---
What do you do when a story bounces around inside your head for three or four years? You need to get the story out to people, and the writer needs to tell it. Author B.C. Young had this exact thing happen to him. He was tired of driving back and forth to work everyday, conceiving a story in his head that no one could hear. Before long, he started to work on his stories. He decided on a simple approach that he felt anyone could read. His decision was to tell the stories he writes through shorter stories. The shorter stories end up telling a bigger story, and the bigger stories tell the final story. As a result, each story feeds off the next and the previous.
Currently his work involves the Miscorrection series and other science fiction stories. This is a favorite genre of his because it allows for so many possibilities in storytelling.


A collection of five short stories to entertain and stimulate the mind. These stories were almost never told, but they were saved from being unspoken.  The collection includes the following science fiction stories.  Click the titles to read a 50% excerpt of the story, you'll be glad you did and even happier if you buy it for 3-tacos (that's $2.99).
Copy Bird: Bill is trapped and lonely. He breaks free of his prison and finds something he doesn’t expect.
“Now you sound like a broken record. I get the point. You can’t have a conversation–only copy. You’re a copy bird. Can I call you that? Copy Bird?”
Despite the fact that the bird doesn’t talk, he imagines that it likes the name. He reaches out his hand for the bird to perch on his finger. The bird does as expected and jumps to his finger. He thinks to himself that the bird is as light as a feather, but in reality it’s two hundred.
“Now you sound like a broken record,” the bird repeats, mimicking his voice perfectly.
“Wow. That’s quite a feat. Sounds just like me, Copy Bird. By the way, my name is Bill.”
“My name is Bill,” the bird says.
“You certainly are a copy bird.”



Going Home: Promises are important to keep, and Commander Patrick Murphy never wants to forget that.
When he got to the dining room, he looked out the window. As he knew would be the case, his dad was in the backyard trying to fix the lawn mower. He kept pulling on the cord, the engine would begin to kick in, and then sputter to a dead stop.
“Hey, Dad,” Patrick called out, after opening the window.
“Patboy! What are you doing here?” his dad asked, excitedly. He moved away from the mower and started walking towards the window.
“They gave me short leave time. Why don’t you come inside? It’s getting dark. Even if you get the thing working, you won’t be able to mow.”
His dad turned back to the mower, and had a look of defeat on his face. Patrick knew he never would get it working again.
“I guess you’re right,” his dad said. “I’m sure your mother’s got dinner just about ready anyway. I’ll be right in.”
Patrick closed the window and knew his dad would have to give it one last try. As he went to sit at the dinner table, he heard his dad make a final attempt, but the mower didn't start.



Josie Dorri And The Coffee Ban: What if the government banned coffee? See what happens to Josie Dorri when they do.
She went over to silverware drawer and pulled out her coffee scooper. She had used the scooper for three years, and she wouldn't make coffee without it because any other scooper didn’t make the coffee as she liked it. A scoop for every cup she always said and it made the coffee strong, but not too strong; bitter but not too bitter; perfect and you can never have too perfect.

As she put the scooper into the coffee bag, she stopped when she saw the headline on the kitchen monitor screen. It read, in big bold type:
COFFEE PROHIBITION STARTS TODAY
Consumption Prohibited, Possession Prohibition Pending




The Present: Miles Gray has a good life, but doesn’t realize it. Often, a trip through time is all that is needed to open up a person’s eyes to how good they have it.
As he did every Friday before getting home from work, he stopped at a local bakery call YumYum. They were only five minutes from his home, and a dozen doughnuts every weekend was Miles’s treat to himself for making it through the work week. (He didn’t actually eat all of the doughnuts—his wife and kids would always help out with that.) YumYum’s doughnuts were definitely the best a person can buy and did not compare to any other bakery. The particular doughnut Miles always enjoyed and loved was the Buttermilk Stick. It was the perfect doughnut to warm up on Saturday morning, sit on his front porch, and eat with a hot cup of coffee.
After buying his doughnuts, Miles enjoyed the last five minutes of his drive. The vehicle had the aroma of the doughnuts filling it, and every time, Miles would give in to eating one of the doughnuts as he drove. More often than not, the Sour Cream doughnut accompanied him on the last leg of his journey home. He’d eat it slowly, making sure it lasted the entire five minutes to the point before he was walking through the door of his home. He often thought how he wished life would stick him in that moment with no return. It’d be a wonderful place.


Running To Keep Her: Neil is obsessed with exercise and eating right, but it’s not for his health that he does it. He does it to keep her.
That’s when Neil saw her. The shadows cast by the moonlight made it difficult for him to distinguish her features. She had long hair, and stood slightly shorter than Neil. She bent down and took a drink from the fountain, and a whole minute passed before she came back up for air. He noticed something familiar. Her silhouette looked like something he’d seen before. It had been dark. The street lamp outside the bedroom shone through the window and cast a seductive shadow on his wife’s body as she moved towards the bed. He remembered the night well because he thought about it often. What he saw now, reminded him of that night.

Available at:

US
UK
DE



Interview With B.C. Young Author of Unspoken Stories Volume 1


I am pleased to announce that I am the first stop on a great author's Blog Tour!  He has published a volume of short stories entitled Unspoken Stories Volume 1.
B.C. YOUNG
Read a short snippet of each of his stories ---here--- and get in on a scavenger hunt ---here--- to win a free copy of Unspoken Stories!
You can also find a review of Unspoken Stories ---here---


What do you do when a story bounces around inside your head for three or four years? You need to get the story out to people, and the writer needs to tell it. Author B.C. Young had this exact thing happen to him. He was tired of driving back and forth to work everyday, conceiving a story in his head that no one could hear. Before long, he started to work on his stories. He decided on a simple approach that he felt anyone could read. His decision was to tell the stories he writes through shorter stories. The shorter stories end up telling a bigger story, and the bigger stories tell the final story. As a result, each story feeds off the next and the previous.
Currently his work involves the Miscorrection series and other science fiction stories. This is a favorite genre of his because it allows for so many possibilities in storytelling.


A collection of five short stories to entertain and stimulate the mind. These stories were almost never told, but they were saved from being unspoken.  The collection includes the following science fiction stories.  Click the titles to read a 50% excerpt of the story, you'll be glad you did and even happier if you buy it for 3-tacos (that's $2.99).




THE INTERVIEW
First of all, did you know that using Google docs you can send, share and update in real time?  I watched as Ben answered my questions which I posted as a document there.  That was pretty cool.

Obviously you think while you drive, how do you keep story ideas from flying right out the window?
I find the best way to do this is NOT sticking my head out the window when I drive. This is especially the case when the window is up. I tried it once, and there was a lot of shattered glass and blood. 
Good Call!

The Quality/quantity debate really isn’t a debate at all is it?  I have often had the same misconception that you had, how has your writing changed after realizing that writing a great story like Copy Bird in six hours is possible?
It’s freed me from the slow, over-thinking process of writing. Now, when I sit down to write fiction, I let the creativity flow, and don’t get hung up on word use, grammar, and spelling. It’s made my writing quicker, and I feel, better because I’ve allowed my creative voice to speak in my writing, rather than my technical one.
It’s a lot easier to edit after you write and I find it doesn’t interrupt the flow.

Josie Dorri and the Coffee Ban reminds me a lot of some of the more off the wall short stories that Stephen King writes (that is a compliment and not part of the question :D)  Are you a coffee fiend, or what is that the story behind it?
Yes, I do drink coffee, but I wouldn’t consider myself a fiend. The story idea came from my brother-in-law. He thought it would be a funny to have a story about a person who doesn’t have their coffee for the day, and a bunch of bad things happen as a result. As you can tell in the story, I morphed this idea a bit by adding in a coffee prohibition by the government and giving a reason for the bad day. I had a ton of fun writing that story.
And I loved it!  I can relate to her, without that morning cup of coffee I may as well be a square tire!

What made you decide to sell “All My Fiction”?  What if someday you become a world renowned writer with a large publishing house?
I took it from a reader’s perspective. What if for a flat rate I could get everything a writer published? I’d love it. So I figured other people would, too. It’s definitely less of a risk for the reader. How often have you read a book only to not like it and feel like you wasted your money? I have. But of course, my stuff isn’t bad like that. I think you’ll like it. Still, for the pessimistic reader, All My Fiction is just the ticket!
If I become world renowned, All My Fiction will still be around, as long as distributors like Amazon, Smashwords, and others allow it. Anything written under the B.C. Young name will be in there. The only catch is you want to get in early, because the price goes up every time a new story is added to the eBook. Translation: Buy it now before it costs $1,000,000!
I know I have read a book by an author who I liked a story of only to be really disappointed and never bothered with him again.  Your idea is brilliant!  Maybe not all of your stories will appeal to a reader but they won’t stop reading you (and recommending you as well) We should get in now I think!

Who inspires you? 
Many things inspire me. When it comes to writing, friends and family give me ideas. Past writers like Isaac Asimov, and current ones, too. Sometimes, the guy standing in front of me in line at the grocery store inspires me. A box of doughnuts on the table in a scene of a movie I watched inspired me to write my short story, The Present. Characters and stories are everywhere, it’s just a matter of looking for them.

Do you see your self as a short fiction writer or do you think someday you will find yourself immersed in a novel?
Let me put it this way: I see myself as a fiction writer. Currently, my works are short stories, novelettes, or novellas. We tend to differentiate the length of a story to give people some perspective as to what they suggest. But at the end of the story they are all stories. It just so happens that some are longer than others.
I can also say that I am currently working on a novel length work. I’m doing this under a pen name, Desmond Shepherd. It’s entitled Fram Gage and The I.A. (The “I” and “A” in the title are still secret, but will be revealed in the coming weeks on my site).
Cool!  I can't wait to read it!


Did you know I can watch you type?
I didn’t until I saw you type. Then, I wondered if there was a ghost in Google Docs. Once I stopped freaking out that my computer was talking to me, I accepted it and decided you might actually be stalking me. Are you?
Not me, I pay people to do that!
Thanks for taking the time to do ask me a few questions and reading Unspoken Stories - Volume 1. I really appreciate it!
And thank you for allowing me and my readers an opportunity to get to know you a little bit better!  I would have to say that short story collections are my favorite!  I love all of the stories in Unspoken Words Volume 1.

Available at:

US
UK
DE



Wednesday, August 24, 2011

PART I: Interview With Steve Umstead Author of Gabriel's Redemption and Gabriel's Return






WIN A COPY OF BOTH BOOKS IN THE SERIES details here






←PREVIOUS-----Follow Steve's Blog Tour----NEXT→


STEVE UMSTEAD
I've been waiting a few months for this to come out and I'm so stoked that it's finally here!  GABRIEL'S RETURN
On the far-off icebound planet of Poliahu, North American Federation Navy Commander Evan Gabriel suffered the loss of several team members in order to free a native species and save his brother. Now he is being called away on a new mission by a friend in trouble, and by a name from his distant past. He and his surviving team must again travel across the galaxy to the planet where he lost his naval command, and his original team, so many years ago: Eden.
Evan Gabriel must face three distinct threats on Eden: the well-armed terrorist group that has been raiding Eden City, the dangerous planet itself, and his own haunting memories of his past.
Gabriel’s Return continues the epic science fiction/adventure trilogy with characters new and old, devious political intrigue on the moon and Mars, and deadly jungle combat on Eden.


I had the joy and privilege of meeting Steve on Twitter after he judged a round of Leah Petersen's #FiveMinuteFiction flash fiction contest.
After getting to know him better as well as all of the folks in #PubWrite on twitter I was drawn into the world of Independent Authors and self publishing as well as writing as a whole. I credit Steve with helping me get a novella I self published in hard copy a few years ago back onto the "shelves." Much of the help I got was by simply knowing Steve and being in his circles (speaking of circles he also dragged me into Google+).
When Steve asked me to interview him and write a review for Gabriel's Return I didn't hesitate for a second!


Links:
Website: steveumstead.com | Twitter: SteveUmstead | Google+: Steve Umstead | Facebook: Steve Umstead Writes
Author Pages:
Amazon | Independent Author Network | Facebook Author Fan Page | GoodReads


THE INTERVIEW (PART I) Part II
I may have gotten a little carried away with my interview questions, but after all how often does one get to interview someone so interesting, who writes really well, has a cool day job and so totally into techno-gadgetry?  Without Further Ado…


WHO IS STEVE UMSTEAD?
Where(ish), When(ish) were you born?
Where(ish) would be scenic (tongue in cheek) New Jersey, and...no wait, I take that back. I'm tired of apologizing for living in New Jersey! It's not the "Jersey Shore", and I'm not from Joisey where the Sopranos were. I'm 20 minutes from Philadelphia, an hour from Atlantic City and the beaches, and I've got a house with a yard. So take that, Jersey haters! Sorry...and when(ish) would be in and around the time the moon landings were taking place (that should be enough of a window to let you know I'm no spring chicken).  [I think many people forget that it was called The Garden State for a reason]


How does the time and where you grew up effect your writing?
The time is an easy one. Think Star Wars. At the impressionable age I was when that hit the theatres, it deeply affected my imagination and my interests. As I went through school, high school most notably, I always had a strong desire to read & write science fiction, and most certainly it goes back to that Star Wars era. Oh, and at the same time was Buck Rogers (and Erin Grey, rraawwrr! [wow, I hadn't heard of her but found a pick, rraawwrr indeed!]) and Battlestar Galactica. And in grade school, I'd rush home to see Starblazers on television. As for where, that's tougher - I don't know if where I grew up had any effect; maybe just the fact that it's a laid back, suburban area as opposed to the hustle and bustle of a big city gave me time, and space to act out my imagination.


Although we don't learn much about Gabriel's Childhood how much of the story that brought him to where he is in his life is your own story?
I seem to get that question a lot, as in how much of you is in Evan Gabriel. And quite honestly, it's not much. He is an entirely made-up character. I mean seriously - hardcore military guy with a haunted past...yeah, not me at all. I've never even held a gun, let alone killed anyone (that was public, at least). However, the opening scene of the series is one I've had in my head for many years, and one that created the entire character. It was based on an experience I had on a trip to the Caribbean, and I incorporated that into the scene, and combined it with some of my knowledge of Jamaica, to write that scene - which became Gabriel's Redemption.


Do you believe in:
Aliens?
Yes, of course - to not believe somewhere in the billions of stars there isn't some form of intelligent life would be very closed-minded.
UFOs?
Not at all, every one of those stories of UFO sightings is either made up or was seen incorrectly. If/when aliens come here; everyone will know about it, not just some pickup-driving toothless hillbilly. And why exactly do aliens kidnap them, and not learned scientists?  
It's a matter of time frame. Humans have been...self-aware, let's call it, for a few dozen thousands of years, but the planet has been here five billion, and will be for five billion more. The most important part of the Drake Equation is the time frame - aliens would have to coincidentally visit our planet at the exact same we're here, which is a pinpoint in the lifespan of the planet.
Ghosts?
Nope, sorry fantasy/horror writers. Dead is dead.
www.nataliedee.com
Sea Creatures (Lochness Monsters and the like)?
Hmmm...yes, I suppose so. We've explored the space around our planet and moon more than we have our own oceans, so I'm sure there's something down there we haven't seen yet. Nessie? Meh, not so much - again, only hillbillies have seen her, right?


In our lifetime which of these are the most likely to go from Science Fiction to Science Fact?
Aliens, or at least an alien life form, so to speak. I think it's only a matter of time before life is detected on another planet. Animal life, not just spores or bacteria. Whether I'll be around when we visit that planet… I guess I can dream.


How much does your "day job" in the travel industry lend itself to your writing in terms of setting and characters?
A few times per year, And I will certainly use those settings in future works, as they're a lot of fun.


If space travel became as common place as a vacation to the Caribbean could you get me a good deal on a trip to a beautiful planet of warm seas and white sandy beaches?
You know what the toughest part of being in the travel industry is? Everyone wants a deal...man, can't anyone pay regular price??  [Can't blame a guy for trying!]


David Paetkau From Flashpoint
WHO IS EVAN GABRIEL?
Is there any one person who embodies Evan Gabriel?
Good question, I never really sat down and thought about it. I suppose physically he was modeled after the somewhat-obscure actor David Paetkau from the CBS/CTV series Flashpoint, but that's as far as that went (I had a photo of Paetkau in my Scrivener files to glance at when it came to describing the character). I guess he's got a little of my impatience/cut to the chase attitude, and maybe a little Bruce Willis-Die Hard anger and exasperation when faced with certain situations. So no - not one person!  [that's really cool!  For some reason I always pictured him more like Ron Pearlman]


You have attempted, (and succeeded in my opinion) to make a science fiction story that not only caters to seasoned sci-fi fans but also makes it easily digestible for those of us that don't understand the inner workings of a Frion-Destabilizing Chriptohydrenic Twift Drive.  How did you manage to do both?
Thank you kindly, that's something I'm very proud of: being able to write science fiction that doesn't exclude non-hardcore SF fans, and can even appeal to other genre readers. I'm a big fan of near-future sci-fi, as I find it more believable (no Twift Drives in my writing). The tech and settings are based on what's happening today, just extended a little further. Brain implants that can communicate with others and plot maps are just another couple of leaps from an iPhone; retina and palm scans exist today, as do rail guns and body armour. Other planets and wormholes? Those are staples of sci-fi that I think everyone accepts at this point.


The planet of Eden with it's beautiful but deadly fauna sets a wonderful picture of what may be waiting for us on distant planets.  In your worldly travels have you come across a place that inspired it or was it all you’re your fertile mind?
It was wholly-created from imagination - I mean can you picture a state park where monkeys throw acidic sap on people walking by, or that have that have swamp lilies that digest meat & tissue? However, a few years ago I went to Costa Rica, and we did a full day of a rainforest hike up to an active volcano with hot springs that surrounded it. When I put together Eden, that's the thick foliage and streams/mountains that I used as a base for the dangerous world.  [Wow!  What a beautiful place, I can picture that for sure.]


Gabriel's Return is the second of a three book series.  Is it for sure going to end after three books or is their beginning to be a whole large series evolving?  I myself would like to see a prequel or two.
Funny, my wife just asked me the same question the other day. As it stands now, the series is a trilogy only. However that may change, as I've grown a bit attached to Gabriel and some of his team members. I do plan to go back after the trilogy is complete and do a novella prequel, as you say, which will explore his original mission on Eden five years ago, the mission that made him who he is today.  [I can't wait!]


How has Evan grown since Gabriel's Redemption?
Well, it's been six months since the end of that story, and with his new position in Security on Mars, he's probably put on a few pounds…Oh, grown as a person? Right… Well, he's learned to compartmentalize his past, as part of what had affected him so deeply did get worked out to some extent at the end of Book 1. He's also found that he can trust family and friends again. However, his new mission, which takes him back to the site of the massacre on Eden that affected him so deeply long ago, may draw him back to his uncertain self.


I can see your stories having mass appeal however I note a serious lack of romance.  Can we look forward to some "steam" in the third book?  I know that Evan is pretty tied down to Renay but is there anyone on the crew to take a Captain Kirk role (*wink)?
Hey, there's a bit of romance in Gabriel's Return! Well, a small bit - small enough that many female readers mentioned it. So yes, I probably could have had more of that. Book 3 will have some strong male-female connections as part of the main plot, but they won't really be romantic. There is a secondary character, Galen Sowers, who is somewhat of a ladies man - at least in his own mind. I guess I'm not cut out for writing romance.  [That's okay, I'm not really cut out for reading it!]


Coming up next...
Technology, and Steve On Writing


WIN A COPY OF BOTH BOOKS IN THE SERIES details here


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PART II: Interview With Steve Umstead Author of Gabriel's Redemption and Gabriel's Return








WRITE THIS WAY FOR A FREE BOOK GIVEAWAY (However you may need to read the ENTIRE interview first to be able to answer the skill testing questions!)




←PREVIOUS-----Follow Steve's Blog Tour----NEXT→
STEVE UMSTEAD
I've been waiting a few months for this to come out and I'm so stoked that it's finally here!  GABRIEL'S RETURN

On the far-off icebound planet of Poliahu, North American Federation Navy Commander Evan Gabriel suffered the loss of several team members in order to free a native species and save his brother. Now he is being called away on a new mission by a friend in trouble, and by a name from his distant past. He and his surviving team must again travel across the galaxy to the planet where he lost his naval command, and his original team, so many years ago: Eden.
Evan Gabriel must face three distinct threats on Eden: the well-armed terrorist group that has been raiding Eden City, the dangerous planet itself, and his own haunting memories of his past.
Gabriel’s Return continues the epic science fiction/adventure trilogy with characters new and old, devious political intrigue on the moon and Mars, and deadly jungle combat on Eden.

Links:

Author Pages:

I was so excited to be a part of Steve's blog tour that I over did it with all the questions I wanted to ask him!  He answered them all too and I just could not shrink any of it down so I decided that I must share all of the interview.  So here is the second part.
THE INTERVIEW (PART II) Technology, Social Media & Writing   (Part I)

TECHNOLOGY
Much of the technology described in your stories seems so common place that one would think they are in existence today.  How did you get such a feel for how technology may evolve without it seeming construed?
I've done a ton of science fiction reading, and I'm a big techie geek, so I pay attention to a lot of the technology articles online and in magazines. With a lot of the current tech, you can see what the next step would be, the next logical progression, so I try to use what looks like its right around the corner in the stories.


What is your favourite current piece of technology?
You can have my iPhone when you pry it from my cold, dead hands.  I do want an iPhone…

What current technology would you love to have?
As a techie geek, I'm already fairly well set on the gadgets. Since I don't smoke or have a gambling habit, my vices consist of buying the latest and greatest (iPhone, MacBook Air, etc.) I have yet to pull the trigger on an iPad, so that might be next...


What must be invented to complete your life?
I'll say two of the technologies/discoveries that I used in my series. First, neuretics (I made that word up - kinda cool, huh?) which are neural implants giving the user instant "online" access to information, communication, etc. I'm sometimes glued to my iPhone - to not have to carry it around, and still have all the features of it installed in my head? Oh yeah… Next would be interstellar travel via wormholes. Just the idea of jumping to another planet same-day, as easy as taking a flight to Mexico…very tempting.  Whoa, that would be a little too invasive for me, I like the privacy of my won brain.


STEVE UMSTEAD, THE WRITER
I would say that you have a large following of fellow Indie Authors.  How did this start and how much has it affected your motivation to continue writing?
Honestly I have no idea how all of this happened, it just sort of snowballed from meeting a bunch of great people online shortly after publishing my first (Gabriel's Redemption). I'm still blown away by the fact that that many people follow my messages. I have to watch what I say! There can be a fine line between personal platform building and offending others. How has it affected my writing motivation? More than I could have ever believed. The people I've met have been incredible, and a small handful of them have supported me in both the good times (publishing a work) and bad (getting discouraged and disenchanted - which is easy when you're judge, jury, and executioner of the novel).

Tell us a little bit about The Pubwrite Group.
Great segue - it's the #pubwrite hashtag I'm speaking of when I say a small handful. A group of like-minded authors on Twitter one day got together and decided to append a hashtag to our regular conversations so we could more easily follow them…and my goodness has it exploded. Maybe even too much, as now the hashtag has become something people append to 'buy my book/read my blog' random tweets just to get their name out there (which by the way, if you're reading this and are one of them, that's not why the #pubwrite hashtag was created…it's to chat with other great writers…those hashtag spams as I call them are actually hurting your platform, as the regulars get ticked off.) As for the PubWrite Group, again a small handful of the 'originals' thought that a more organized and centralized place where authors could meet other authors, and help each other in promoting their stories, was needed. And the PubWrite Group is completely separate from the hashtag, and will continue to be, as the hashtag again is for friendly conversations, not sales.  If you're a writer you really need to check out what these guys have to offer!

I know that meeting you has been a major catalyst into my own foray into self publication, how do you think you managed to inspire fledgling indie authors like myself?
Wow… I have to say that took me a bit off guard. I've never thought of myself as having the knowledge or influence to inspire others. I'm just plugging away, asking advice where I need to, giving some where I can. I'm by no means an expert, sheesh! I'm also not sitting on stacks of cash at home, lighting cigars with extra hundred dollar bills, and gold-plating my bathroom fixtures. And I've certainly had my stumbles along the way. But I guess I'm willing to keep trying new things, and I'm certainly willing to help anyone in any way I can. Hey, this is supposed to be fun, right? Writing and publishing?  I like your attitude Mr. Umstead!


Are you an Indie for life or would you move to a big Print house if the money was right?
If the money was right, I'd dress up as a woman and run for governor of Mars. Then again, I'd probably do that for free if I could get to Mars. I'm loving being independent, and have no plans to sign an agent or go through a publisher. I love the freedom to write my own stuff, design my own covers, set my own pricing, and market the way I want to market (I have a degree in marketing, for Pete's sake…) That being said, I'd be silly if I said I'd turn down the right offer. I just don't see that happening, because… I think you're selling yourself short.


Where do you see book publishing going in the next ten years?  Fifty Years?
… the big publishers are in trouble. Right now I think they're too slow, too entrenched in what things were like, instead of seeing what things will be. The internet age, the digital age, is here and here to stay. To say books should be $24.99, and eBooks the same price, is ludicrous. Now an eBook can be sent anywhere in the world, at any time, in any quantity, for little to no cost. However, that being said... I think the current vibe from big publishing houses is spend more, save trees!


I know you are a big fan of E-Books and E-Readers.  Do you think they will eventually replace the paperback?
…paper books will never go away. eBooks absolutely will be the preferred method of reading and distributing - the writing (pardon the pun) is on the wall. Some people say paper is dead, but I don't think that's quite the case. There will always be a market for paper books, but as evidenced by the collapse of Borders, eBooks are the future (Barnes & Noble gets it - I see their stores within five years being nothing but showpieces with cafes and Nook kiosks where readers can download books to their Nooks). One thing I see happening, and hopefully in time for my kids when they enter college, is that college textbooks will be eBooks, and every student will walk around with an always-on iPad or equivalent. THAT will be a sea change I'll be thankful for (cost wise!) No, I think these text book publishers will find a way to make it cost more, and imagine how quickly these things will get hacked and shared?

WHAT IS STEVE DOING NOW?
What are you working on right now?
These cursed interviews! Oh, you mean projects…right. As we speak (type?) I am sitting in a mountain cabin…okay, not really. I'm in the mountains with my in-laws in a trailer park. But you get the idea. I'm here with the family, but I'll be putting a lot of time aside for the next project - outlining Book 3, Gabriel's Revenge. With any luck, I'll come home in a few days with a fairly detailed outline, ready to jump in to the first draft come September 1st.  Woo Hoo!

Do you have anything besides Evan Gabriel stories in the hopper?
Actually yes. A few weeks ago while on vacation I had a dream - and my dreams sometimes are very detailed, scenes that play out in my head, even to the point where I see words in a book describing that scene. This scene was very intriguing, and when I woke up I had an idea for a new story which has a little time travel and alien invasion to it. I'm actually really looking forward to putting pen to paper (sorry, fingers to keyboard) and getting to it.

When should we be keeping our eyes peeled for Gabriel's Revenge?  I know I can't wait (although I'm sure that the Republican Bastards from the SA can).
If plans go well, I'm shooting for the Christmas season. If I have a story in my head, and outline in front of me, I can really churn out words. As a matter of fact, the last week of writing Gabriel's Return was so fun, the scenes so slam-bang action packed, everything wrapping up, that I wrote 30,000 words in seven days. So I know it can be done, I just need to sit down and do it. One chapter per day, mine being around 2,000 words, is easily achievable - so September & October, with some days off to actually make money at the day job, I should be able to complete a first draft of 90k+ and edit the heck out of it during November. Those South American Republic bastards will never know what hit them.  You, my friend, are a machine!


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