So it’s the end of the month and my attempt to go a whole month posting every day has gone without a hitch. I think I managed to maintain a level of quality throughout. Granted you might disagree with me there, but I’ll assume that you don’t.
Now I have to decide if I want to do this from now on. It makes sense from a business standpoint, since more people seem to read and comment when I blog regularly as opposed to once a week. And I think it has helped me become a better blogger.
It’s also put me in writer mode all the time. I look at everything as something that I can write about. And that’s also helping with my fiction writing.
So, expect more blog entries. And also expect more books. Lots more books. I think y’all are really going to like the next one. Also, you should probably get this one if you haven’t already.
I was reading Pickman’s Model, one of my favorite Lovecraft stories, and I realized I recognized most of the places he was talking about in the story. There was the studio on Newbury Street and South Station and there was the North End. In fact, Lovecraft placed Pickman’s studio of horrors right smack dab in the middle of the North End on an unnamed street.
But I want to find it. At least, I want to find the general location where the story was set. Since Boston is deadset on staying the same way it was hundreds of years ago, I’ll be looking at the same buildings that Lovecraft saw in his Boston, almost a hundred years ago.
And there’s something distinctly appealing about that, the ability to go and see the places that affected a writer.
So, since I have business up in the North End anyway, I figured I might as well poke around while I’m there and try and see what Lovecraft.
Oh look, an advertisement for my book that just came out! If you like horror, you’ll like my book. Go read it. Please.
I keep getting jobs where taking a sick day isn’t an option because if I don’t show up, then I don’t get paid. One of my managers even told us that he expected us to come in we got sick because he’d do the same in our situation. That turned out not to be true, but I’m not bitter about that or anything.
The point is that I’m here, right now, because I made some stupid promise that I’d blog every single day of this month. So even though I feel like throwing up whatever terrible, monstrous thing is in my stomach right now, I’m here, for you, my reader.
But I might have to cut this entry a little short because of that. Really, I just came on here to say that I have wonderful friends who retweet my book tweets and repost my blog posts on the facebook and I habve awesome readers who leave great reviews of my book on the Amazon. Ya’ll are truly awesome and I’d hug you if I wasn’t worried that I’d vomit on you.
Speaking of which
Today I installed the air-conditioner, went to the store, did the dishes, a load of laundry, swept the floor and just generally picked up around the apartment. There’s only one reason why I did this and it’s not because I have a kind heart.
No, it’s because my computer died a terrible, terrible, hopefully temporary, death. As a result, I have to use Emily’s computer. But until my computer is fixed (hopefully by tomorrow), I have limited access to the internet and no access to my story files.
This is depressing for two reasons:
1. Anytime I interupt a period of productivity, I end up falling into a stupor of nonwork. All that happy, “I’m going to start my second book now!” talk from yesterday is now put on hold. And I really hope that by the time I get my laptop back that I’ll still be ready and willing to edit and write and format again.
2. This is yet another time where my inability to focus is highlighted in bright and bold colors. I was only to be asproductive as I was today because I didn’t have access to Netflix and my usual assortment of websites (which I can’t find because I don’t remember their addresses). It bothers me that it takes a virus knocking my computer for a loop for me to get off my ass and install the air conditioner that’s been sitting there for three weeks.
Anyway. I’m going to go putter around the apartment aimlessly and find more chores to do that AREN’T writing.
Also, don’t forget to buy my book, “Tales of the Whispering Mad and the Mis-Dead”
Since finishing my book, I’m feeling reinvigorated about writing.
For a long while, I’ve been waiting for some kind of validation. I’ve been waiting for someone to tell me, “Ah-ha! You’ve reached the point where you’re a writer. Congratulations!”
But this time, I said to hell with it and just put it all together and sent it out into the world. And while this isn’t as satisfying as having someone else confirm how awesome I am, there’s still something to be said for pulling myself up by my own bootstraps and getting it done on my own.
And that has given me the boost I need to keep writing and to keep moving forward. It doesn’t matter that the whole ePublishing thing nearly made me pull out all of my own hair. I feel energized, like I could take on anything. So I’ve immediately started working on my next book.
I hope you’re ready for it, cause I sure am.
Speaking of my book, go buy my book! Please.
After months of (sporadic) work, it’s done. The book is done.
You can read it on the Kindle.
You can read it on your computer.
You can read it on your iPad or your iPhone.
Fact is, you can read my book for the low, low price of $2.99. It’s at LEAST an hour’s worth of entertainment; even more if you’re a slow reader. And it’s riproaring good fun.
So buy my book. And when you’re done, tell other people to check it out too. Cause, here’s the deal: ya’ll are my advertising, every last one of you. And the more people who buy this book, the more likely it is that I can do this fulltime and put out another, even better book much sooner.
And if horror’s not your thing, tell that friend you have who digs horror. You all have that one friend who watches the Friday the 13th movies way too much or who REALLY digs Clive Barker. Tell them about Tales of the Whispering Mad and the Mis-Dead. Spread the word, tell your friends. Blog reviews. Tweet the links.
Go forth my minions and spread the gospel!
And read my book.
The closer I reach a deadline, the more I start to implode. I begin to notice a thousand different things that are going wrong.
I notice the spelling, the font is too large, the lines are spaced too far apart, the link in the table of contents aren’t working, the title isn’t centered, there are too many spaces after the period in the second story, the spaces aren’t showing up in the third story, where did the italics go, the program doesn’t recognize the table of contents, this story really isn’t that good, oh god why did I decide to do this!?
I become so broken down and worked up and on edge that I want to throw the computer out the window. And then, shortly after that, myself. This is how it’s always been for major projects, whether it’s school papers or movie reviews 0r goddamn self-published books.
Now, after a certain point I hit the panic horizon. That’s the point at which I stop caring and I just want it done. It’s a last minute dash where I throw out all concern. Who cares that the book is smooshed together in an unreadable lump of terrible font? Who cares that the cover looks like it was designed by a three-year-old with no design sense? Who cares that there’s a typo on every page? This needs to be DONE.
But…this project is important, so I can’t, mustn’t let that happen. I must stay focused on making this the best I can get it. Absolutely focused. And I’m getting so close to the end. The book will be ready for tomorrow’s publication date, so I hope you’re ready.
Self-publishing is not as easy as I was expecting it to be. And I wasn’t really expecting it to be easy. Little obnoxious problems keep cropping up; like GIMP crashing and formatting errors springing up from nowhere and spelling mistakes showing up that I thought I’d hammered out ages ago.
The biggest issue is that I’m not actually doing much in the way of writing. I’ve done a LOT of editing and trimming. I’ve done a lot of research and poking around dingy internet forums looking for the best ways to format a table of contents for a kindle. I’ve been trying to learn a couple of different image editing programs so I could learn how to make my own cover.
It’s a mountain of stuff and I wonder how those people who do this for a living manage it. So many little tasks are demanding my attention right now that I’m being torn six different ways.
Fortunately for you and unfortunately for me and my peace of mind, I’ve gone into stubborn mode and I absolutely refuse to miss this deadline. “Tales of the Whispering Mad and the Mis-Dead” WILL be online this Saturday.
If I see a man by the road, I’ll assume that he’s homeless and alone, that he’s on the verge of starvation, that this is one of the last moments he’ll experience before he succumbs.
If I see a couple arguing in the store, I’ll assume that they’re both near the end of their tether, that they’re both frayed and on edge and that they’re both so close to finding a final way of resolving the unending conflict between the two of them.
I see the same things everyone sees, but I jump to radically different conclusions. I always, always, assume the worst. There’s a mugger down that alley. That man is a serial killer. That one a pedophile. That car is driven by a drunk and won’t make it another a block.
It’s a thought process that’s helped me a great deal in writing horror. If I imagine the worst when bound up by real life, imagine what my brain does when I let it got unfettered. There’s a demon on every street corner and the end of the world lurks around every Tuesday. There most definitely is a monster in that closet and here, I’ll describe it to you in detail.
It’s a little less healthy when I imagine that every lump and spot is cancer, that every fight is the end of a relationship and that every message foretells the End.
It is not the healthiest mentality, but occasionally I am reminded that what goes on in my head isn’t actually the reality of the situation. Sometimes there isn’t murder behind every dark alley and blood behind every fight. Sometimes it goes the other way and everything works out for the best. Sometimes, it’s not the end of things.
So, it looks like I might actually be on track to get the book published by Friday/Saturday. I still don’t have a cover and I still haven’t written the introduction.
I figured out how to do the table of contents, something that’s been holding me up for months. But now, when you open up my book on your Kindle, you can go to any story you want with no fuss. That’s probably the thing I’m most excited about. It’s been my excuse for so long, my way of avoiding getting the book out there.
In fact, most of the formatting is done. I’ve even done some early tests and it looks just like I hoped it would. I should really read through the whole thing and make sure of it, but that’s for later.
And I’m getting excited, because for the first time I actually think this might happen. Most of the time, it’s been this vague thing that will happen at some point in the future, just as soon as I get around to it. But now, there’s actual progress and it’s marching steadily along. And even if there’s a set-back (or a dozen of them), I think I’ll be able to push through it and keep on going.
So, I want all of you to be ready, because “Tales of the Whispering Mad and the Mis-Dead” (Emily gave me the title, for free!) will be out on the Kindle THIS Saturday.