Wednesday, November 16, 2016

21 Days Later...

Hey everybody!  Please excuse last week's absence of blog.  I'd stayed up until about 4 a.m. Wednesday morning watching the results of the 2016 presidential election then slept two hours and took my daughter in to school, so I was pretty wiped.  Since then, Wandering City Blues has gotten its first official review, I've been booked for two more appearances and I'm starting to come up with something new, all of which I wanted to point you to today.

First, the review.  The UK-based website The Pulse Entertainment, a small but quickly-growing pop culture site, gave WCB an 8 out of 10, calling it "a fantastic read" and a "success."  Their review is spoiler-free, so give it a read regardless of whether or not you've had the chance to parse through WCB's pages yet.

Second, gigs!  This Saturday from 11-4 I'll be appearing at Comic Logic in Ashburn, VA for Local Comic Shop Day.  As usual, I'll have a table with books to sell/sign and to chat it up with everyone who comes by.  If you're in the area, come by and say hello!  I've also booked my first 2017 comic con, the brand new NOVA Con at The Ritz-Carlton Tysons Corner.  This three-day con is July 28-30 and I'll have one of two specially-placed artist's tables, details to follow.  Artists Alley spaces for this con are still available so if you're a creator, get in while the getting's good!

Third, I'm looking forward towards the next book I'd like to write and I currently have two options available to me.  One would be a sequel to WCB, a war- and diplomacy-focused second volume of Fogworld that picks up where WCB leaves off.  For spoiler purposes I won't say where that is.  However, I can tell you that following the events of the previous book, inter-titan relations are worsening and a full-scale conflict is nearing inevitability.  Returning characters from WCB and many new characters will make up a cast of ambassadors, soldiers and politicians readying themselves for what could be mankind's last massive fight - a Final World War.  This week I rewatched both Seven Samurai and The Thin Red Line (1998) and both inspired the level of intimacy and existentialist dread of bloodshed into which I'd like to tap.

The other idea is to step outside the Fogworld saga and try my hand at horror.  My friends and readers have asked me for 10 years why I've never written a zombie book and I've always cited the oversaturation of the horror-drama market - much less that I never had a truly original idea.  Earlier this year I came up with a pretty exciting idea that I'd like to write at some point.  I'd like to start with the classic zombie setup - strangers scrambling to a house in a neighborhood and being forced to cooperate despite their personalities clashing amid the zombocalypse.  So far so meh, until the survivors realize there are too many zeds surrounding the house to escape so they decide there's nowhere to go but down.  They end up digging a tunnel to another nearby house in the neighborhood (spied from a vantage point in the first house) for food and supplies, then another tunnel, and another, each time hoping there will be few enough shamblers that they can flee on foot to safety.  They develop a whole network of tunnels throughout this neighborhood, challenged by cave-ins, limited supplies etc.  Essentially it's the first half of Night of the Living Dead welded onto the middle of The Great Escape - both of which I've also watched recently for inspiration.

So I have to decide between these two books.  Which do I write next, readers?  Does one sound better than the other, or more intriguing?  Is there any specific research you'd recommend I do before tackling one or the other?  Is anyone reading this?

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Book Trailer! / Launch Week Catch-up.

Get ready to be amazed, my friends!  Our friend Evans Wilson (of the aptly-named Evans Wilson Media) has assembled a book launch trailer for Wandering City Blues and it's fantastic.  Click this here text to check it out, then tell a friend!

So I and A Carrier of Fire had a pretty fantastic launch week last week, exhausting as it was.  The local signing/party at Comic Logic and The Ashburn Pub was a huge success first - I sold 15 copies in three hours at our table and left the comic shop another 10 pre-signed copies, so if you missed us last Wednesday, go to Comic Logic and get yours today!  We also got to do plenty of giveaways at The Ashburn Pub to new and old fans and friends alike, take pictures of the Comic Logic staff enjoying the custom cocktails dedicated to the novel and even get a live video.

Following that, the 30th annual Virginia Comicon was another triumph last weekend (October 29th and 30th).  I had a table and I signed and sold about another 35 copies of Wandering City Blues then gave away the rest of my prizes to an excited crowd at the book launch panel that the con hosted, moderated by Mansa Herndon of 2 Fat Guys Podcast.  It was both extraordinarily humbling and a bit of an ego boost to have people show up and ask me questions about Fogworld and its universe for close to 45 minutes straight, having previously known nothing about it.  Wow!  Then the con sponsored a launch party for the book on Saturday night that was well-attended and also quite an honor for me to attend.

That's all for this week!  Check last week's blog for paperback and Kindle availability on Wandering City Blues plus where you can download other goodies related to the book.  Have a good one!  Go Cubbies!