Privacy, Please

This past weekend, I had the opportunity to lock myself in a hotel room for half a weekend with time all to myself. I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking “Why would you lock yourself in a hotel room instead of actively doing things out and about?”

Well, first of all, it was a small town and there’s not much to do anyway. But, second and most importantly, I vowed to spend all of Saturday editing Ascent Into Light. These were largely line edits, but if a plot hole presented itself (which they did), I would squash it. This was all in preparation for beta readers and my editor next month.

So let me just say this: If you’re a writer, you should try this!!! Find an excuse to go somewhere an hour or two away, hole up in a hotel for a day or two and just EDIT!!! Or write! Whichever. If you have the means, it’s worth it. Even just locking yourself in a room in your house for 12 hours would work pretty well.

Of course I had snacks. I never got out of my PJs. I never once left the hotel room. SyFy was playing a Harry Potter marathon and there was football on TV as well. I was so in the zone it hurt.

It was amazing, and was precisely what I needed. Did I get the entire book edited? Hell no. I think I got 13 or so chapters through the wringer and, while it was progress, that really wasn’t the main point.

Only, I didn’t know this until I just recently reflected upon the experience.

See, I’m not a full-time writer. My writing endeavors will most likely never pay the bills past anything more than an extra latte at Starbucks once a month. But this… this one day of uninterrupted, “no distractions or responsibilities” editing gave me a taste of what it would be like.

And, let me tell you, I could absolutely get used to it. I’d love the opportunity to prove it.


The End Is A New Beginning

Yesterday, I wrote the last two words of The Forgotten Years saga.

“The End.”

No, mind you, I don’t actually include “The End” in any of my books. The end of the book is always pretty apparent when it happens, so there’s never any question. But this actually is the end–not merely the end of a book, but the end of the quadrilogy (it’s a word now).

I realize I have no idea how to feel about it. I’ve worked on this series for years (don’t forget, I began writing The Call of Chaos a long time ago). These characters have lived inside my head for probably half my life and, in that time, they’ve become my friends and family of sorts.

We’ve done a lot together–adventured, uncovered mysteries, laughed, cried… even argued about the direction of the story (arguments I usually lost). We had good times and we had bad times together.

But all things eventually come to an end and, soon, I will have to say goodbye to the characters who have journeyed with me as I embark on another adventure and theirs comes to an end.

And, as I pointed out, I have no idea how to feel about it. I thought I would feel a huge catharsis and I’d jump up and cheer, having completed a four-book series. I thought I’d also feel sad because I would be leaving behind something I’d worked so diligently on. I thought I’d feel a sense of accomplishment. I thought I’d sit back and beam with pride. But what did I actually feel?

None of this.

Or all of it in tiny amounts. I’m not really sure. It’s confusing, to say the least. I’m attached to these books. These books are my babies and I really do love them but, at the same time, they’ve run their course. The story has been told to my satisfaction and, hopefully, readers’ satisfaction.

So, in the end, that’s what I’m feeling–a deep sense of satisfaction. I can always look back on these four Forgotten Years books and know that I told a fun, engaging story with an amazing cast of characters.

So, yes, satisfaction… and maybe a little excitement.

To everyone who’s taken the journey through The Forgotten Years, I thank you. I thank you for giving them a shot and I thank you for continuing to read. I thank you for your feedback and your criticisms and your support and your advice.

You won’t have to wait long. Ascent Into Light will be out in a few months for you to devour. After that… well, as Arnold said in Jurassic Park (before he was completely devoured by velociraptors), “Hold onto your butts.”

What’s next? I’ve got plans, and I’m just getting started.

News To Me

Wow. It’s been a week or two since I last blogged here but, as always, it’s basically because I haven’t had anything super awesome to say. Also, self-promotion and social media presence can be really draining to where I can’t word sometimes.

So, anyway, the news is my newsletter. If you follow me on Twitter, you have probably seen me screaming about it until I’ve gone to plaid in the face. I debated setting up a mailing list/newsletter for over a year. I even set it up and then let it get all moldy and gross.

So, why a newsletter? Who’d want to read emails from me? I ask myself this very question daily. At first, I thought about starting a newsletter because bunches of people kept telling me I should. Before we get started, yes, I would probably jump off a cliff if all my friends did. It sounds like fun.

So here’s the deal. I realize I have readers. I may not have hundreds of readers, but people have read the books I’ve written. Thank you guys, by the way. I’m really humbled that you gave my books a shot!

I also realize not everyone subscribes to all social media. I do get the “when’s your next book out?” questions, which tells me I could be doing a better job communicating with readers, potential readers, the general populace, and murder hobos. So, yeah, I started a newsletter.

My ultimate goal is to hopefully communicate more freely and easily without spamming anyone with walls of text. That’s why I’ve been calling it my Infrequent, Terse Mailing list.

I am constantly learning not only about the writing process, but about self-promotion and marketing. This is my next step, so we’ll see how it works.

And, of course, if you’d like to subscribe, I’ve got a link on the front page:

I hope to have some pretty exciting news about Ascent Into Light coming soon, so stay tuned!

About Your Appearance

No, not your face. We’ll talk about THAT later.

I mean AUTHOR appearances–cons, festivals, and the like. On the eve of the Unbound Book Festival independent author fair (starring yours truly), I am ruminating about tips and tricks for personal appearances. These are things I didn’t know the first, second, or even third time around.

This is by no means a comprehensive list, but I’m going to hit some high points. Ready? Too bad.

  1. Power Banks! What happens if your phone dies? Or your laptop or tablet (if you bring one)? Power banks are crucial for those situations where there is no place to plug in–and there often isn’t. Make sure they’re charged up the night before!
  2. Card Reader! Not everyone pays with cash. Sometimes, they have cash but prefer to pay with a card. You can usually get a basic, FREE card reader from PayPal Here or Square, but you might want to kick in the extra $$ to get a better model–one with a chip reader.
  3. Cash! If you need to make change for someone, you’ll need some 1s, 5s, and maybe even 10s just in case. Also, this cash is useful for when you’re exploring the con and want to buy other books! (this is dangerous)
  4. Book Transportation System! How on Earth do you expect to transport your books from your car to the table? A rolling suitcase is PERFECT for this! And this was something I never thought of until I saw someone doing it…while I was lugging a heavy-ass box of books around–It was great exercise, but also ridiculous.
  5. Business Cards! This was also something I hadn’t thought about until I saw someone suggest it. You can get a bajillion business cards online for really cheap, and they’re handy to include with each book purchase as well as to display on your table.
  6. Table Decor! I’m talking maybe character art, a tablecloth, book stands, maybe a candy dish of some kind–whatever. Make your space unabashedly yours. If it catches the eye, then potential readers will be drawn to it. Even if your books aren’t their thing, they’ll look anyway, wondering “what’s up with all this?”
  7. Snacks! If you’re going to be putting in a lot of time at an author table, it’s a good idea to have some snacks on hand. Some venues will provide snacks and drinks, but it’s best not to rely on them. You want to be at your table for as much time as you can be. If you have someone to tag-team with you, that works really well (I never do).
  8. Your Elevator Pitch! Be prepared to answer when people ask “what’s your book about?” or casually look your way. However you do this is up to you, but it’s a good idea to get used to the idea.
  9. Books! Of course, if you’re going to sell your books, you need to have your books. This should be self-explanatory.

By no means is this everything–every author is different. But these are a great start. Remember, you want to catch the interest of passersby and get them interested in what you’ve written. How that goes down depends solely on you.

Madness Unleashed!

Descent Into Madness is available for Kindle preorder TODAY!!! It will become available on April 20th when the paperback goes live. Available here:

If you’re at the Unbound Book Festival on April 20th, I will have signed paperback copies available. The only shipping is from my hand to yours!

Cor’il comes of age, embracing the power he has been gifted. But power comes with a price The Realm may not be willing to pay.

Kendra discovers secrets about her past, her family, and herself that challenge everything she ever knew.

Madness floods into Cygil while even the hordes struggle to survive. But Dalinil has his eyes set on something that could be just as bad.

Descent Into Madness will not disappoint!


Whisper of Madness

It’s out there.

It constantly murmurs, trying to communicate a susuruss of thoughts, ideas, and sinister wishes. What does it want?

To escape.

No, it already has escaped. It wants to stretch itself–to spread itself like a putrid disease, polluting the Realm and the lands beyond. It desires to corrupt until everything is a festering, rotting shadow of the paradise it once was.

Man and elf alike are consumed by it. The mighty, savage orcs flee from it, but meet the same fate as all else.

These are dark times, but there is hope. But will the Threadweaver be powerful enough to drive back the darkness, or will he succumb to fomenting evil and become our worst enemy?

It’s out there. Madness is out there.

It’s already here.


Descent Into Madness Cover Revealed!

Descent Into Madness is the penultimate book in the Forgotten Years series. Up until now, the story has expanded and revealed elements of a world being torn in many directions by creatures right out of children’s stories. The Red Swords are advancing, and the Reaver’s orcish armies still rampage across the land, completely unchecked.

But a new enemy has entered the fray and Cor’il Silvermoon has gone missing–presumed dead. Elston is infested with horrific monsters, contained for now within the center of the city once called The Jewel of Cygil.

But there is hope! In Cor’il’s absence, Kendra hatches a plan to to pull the Realm out of the darkness and take back what has been lost!

This third book represents a climactic turning point in the overall story where the stakes are raised as everything falls into chaos.

In short, things got serious.

I feel this cover directly represents the content of the book, and I hope you enjoy it! If all goes according to plan, Descent Into Madness will be available this spring.

If you need to catch up, The Call of Chaos and The Coming Storm are available in paperback, Kindle, and Kindle Unlimited here:



So, Where Are We?

FAQ about Descent Into Madness:

When Can We See The Cover?:

The Cover reveal is on Friday, January 25th! Check here, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook!

Where Are You On The Book?:

Currently, I am in round 2 of edits. Then the manuscript goes back to my proofreader, then I make final (hopefully) edits. Then I usually read it aloud once or twice to catch anything else. After that, it’s done.

So When Are You Releasing Descent Into Madness?:

Hopefully early April. I’m trying to have it available in time for the Unbound Book Festival

How Many Books Will There Be In The Forgotten Years?:

Four. Not three, and five is right out.

Why Did You Make A FAQ?:

Because I was bored. This is as much for my benefit as it is for the 2 1/2 readers out there.

What Should We Read While We’re Waiting?:

Try out the first two chapters of The Last Available on Wattpad, here:

What Is Orvaril’s Favorite Color?:



The only other thing I have to say is, if you’ve come this far, you won’t be disappointed. Descent Into Madness goes pretty far off the rails, and I think you’ll really enjoy it.

I’m a Tease!

I’m not ready to reveal the complete cover, because Descent Into Madness’ release date is still a few months away–early April, probably.

But I do so hate keeping everything to myself, so here is a small cover tease.

I think the cover, just like the book’s contents, is not going to disappoint. This third Forgotten Years book really opens up the world and, more importantly, all the characters.

Keep your eyes peeled because, sometime soon, things will move pretty quickly!