Some decisions are hard but for the best.

I made the decision about a month or so ago that with the lifestyle I currently have (swing shifts at work, three young kids, a wife that works swing shifts too, etc), that out of the three main hobbies I do enjoy, I’m going to have to focus on one or two if I want to get somewhere.  I was on a roll for a good two weeks with the new book I’m working on to help introduce myself to the literary world, then of course, life strikes and I’m pulled away from the world of Galantis for an extended period of time.
I know it may sound like I make a lot of excuses for not getting anywhere fast with my books, but the reality of it is, I’ve come to realize I love to do so many things with my life.  I love time with my family, I love my career in law enforcement, I love fitness and I even love gaming!  Heck, if I had the money I would travel too!  But last but not least, I love escaping to the world of Galantis.  Part of it pains me wondering when I will ever get my first novel published and when my other books will make themselves known to the world.  It will happen though… I refuse to leave this life without making my mark in the world of fantasy fiction one way or another.

So for now – at least until my youngest son grows a little older – I will work on my novel whenever time presents itself.  I won’t stress over it anymore, I won’t worry, I won’t beat myself up for not finding the needed alone time to focus on the work at hand.  My family is more important and so is my health.  I would rather never publish a book in my life if it meant sacrificing precious time with my boys.  I can write a book at any point in my life, but I can’t ever get back the young innocent years of my sons.   I have seen and read about too many people who became so successful in business, as authors, or even as cops, yet their families were torn asunder because the husband and/or father was never around.  For what good is success if you have no one to share it with?

So as I sit here at Starbucks sipping down my white chocolate mocha and finishing up my cranberry crumble cake, I can smile even in the face of slight sorrow.  Because this life isn’t worth living without your family and the precious moments you share with them.  So who knows when my books will be finished and published!  Once this blog entry is posted I will work on it for a little while, but after that it’s back to lifting weights and saving Azeroth in World of Warcraft, until the next time I’m presented with the opportunity to return to Galantis.

In the meanwhile, I’m considering revamping my blog here to incorporate more than just my journey as an author.  I don’t spend enough time on my work currently in order to post often on here and continue with updates.  In addition, I find myself wanting to talk about other things aside from the World of Galantis.  I’ve even considered adding on fitness tips and posting stories about my adventures in World of Warcraft.  The idea would be to draw an even larger crowed that expands outside of just those who search for the ‘fantasy’ or ‘novel’ hashtags out there.

We’ll see!

 

A little something random…

You need to take care of yourself before you can take care of others.

Be productive, in mind, body, and in spirit.

Give, even if it’s hard to give.  Because true giving comes with sacrifice of one’s self.

Don’t let others, even loved ones, with their fears and doubts weigh you down.  If they don’t want to soar with you, go fly on your own and breathe in the air that you so crave.  Then later swoop down from time to time to help lift them up to the bliss you feel… if you choose so.

Chase your goals like it’s all you have left.  Don’t let others who choose not to reach their goals, drag you down to their life of mediocrity.

You only get one life… so use it to make your footprint in the hearts of others and in this world.

Chapter Summaries/Outlines and why they work for me.

It’s been several days since I posted anything, not so much because of the job but because I’ve been focusing any free time I got on my new – and yet still untitled – project.  In addition, I learned something new about myself and what speeds up the process – without sacrificing quality – of writing a novel!

The old me would have spent a week just working on the first chapter, and that’s with sufficient free time to spend on it.  However, what I’ve realized is that when it comes to fictional writing, at least 80% of your time is focused on being creative by kick-starting your imagination into overdrive.  And then on top of that, you got to put your thoughts to paper and make it look pretty.  For me, this is very time consuming.  Sure, I get to write out my official draft in addition to coming up with the plot-line for each chapter all in the same breath, but I feel as if I’m working harder for it.

So with that in mind, can you believe that I figured out the first EIGHT chapters of my novel already within two weeks?!  In addition, out of those two weeks I actually completed five chapters in two days!  So this is what I did and still am doing…

After I figured out the general plot of my story summarizing it from beginning to end, I will write it down then begin breaking it down and getting more detailed on which chapter will cover what part of that plot.  So then I’ll start with chapter one and write out the overall plot from beginning to the end of what takes place in that chapter.  It isn’t made to be pretty or even be grammatically correct, it’s just simple, to the point, and brings out key events that are important for the readers to see in that chapter.  This then focuses my time and energy on the plot itself and the creativity I can utilize than worrying about how it will sound when the reader dives into it.

Once I’ve completed every chapter for my novel with these plot summaries (or outlines as I sometimes call them) and being sure they fit in each piece of the overall story, I can then start from the beginning using the summary as a guide, and write out the plot in elaborate wording that will be what I want published.  Now that I don’t have to worry about being creative in what happens next in the story, I can just focus on making it look ‘pretty’ on paper since I already wrote out what happens next!  Of course, some creativity will be required in the wording process and in details of the story you wouldn’t waste your time on with the summary, but your brain won’t feel so overloaded trying to juggle two tasks at once as you write.  At least mine doesn’t!

So there you have it!  Feel free to share what helps you or ask any questions you may have.  Don’t make too much fun of me if this is basic writing 101 that I should have already known *laughs*  I’m still learning!

Ok, now a ‘useful’ post

Well I made a ground-breaking plot for the new novel I’m currently writing!  I spent at least an hour and a half in my man-cave the other day typing it all out as the ideas just came gushing out as if someone broke my head open like a pinata.

Ok… that actually is a pretty painful analogy now that I think about it.

So let’s go with… The ideas spewed forth like a raging river that no mortal man could contain.

I can’t write for crap right now, heck, I can’t really work on anything novel related while on-duty, my cop-brain is still active and alert for other things than relaxed and at ease.  But yes, I finally found my base plot-line for the new novel yet I STILL don’t know what the title is to be.  However, I’ll figure it out soon enough!

Suckage de Tumblr

I mean seriously… I have more followers on here and get comments from people worth a damn than anyone on Tumblr.  And anything I post here, goes on there!  Well, except this maybe.

Only type of followers I get are usually ads or porn blogs.  So I’m wondering if I should even bother with that particular blog, although it is pretty good for pictures.  I can’t stomach Twitter (no offense to you Twitter-ers), I do have an Instagram but again, mainly a picture blog… only thing I can think of is a Facebook page that people can like and follow.  Hmm… that may be a possibility.

I think my path is set…

So after much consideration and even speaking to a few followers of mine who already have novels out there (you know who you are,) I think the path of self-publishing will be my route to take.  What I also failed to mention was I did get a reply back from a literary agent who was very useful in helping guide me toward this recommended path in getting my name out there.  Sadly he didn’t take on my novel the Kingdom Come, but not because he didn’t believe in it like others have said in the rejection letters, but because he felt many publishers wouldn’t, at least until I can break new ground on this type of fantasy fiction I’m presenting.  I knew this would be an uphill climb, but I love this novel (and the others to come) so much that I NEED to get it out there, even if I have to self-publish in hopes of it catching the attention of fantasy lovers out there.

In the meantime, my heart is set on the short story I wrote about earlier on.  However, I’m turning that now into a book of its own, but I don’t plan on it being as long as The Kingdom Come.  This will be my gateway novel… at least I hope.  The book that just about any fantasy/werewolf lover out there would enjoy, especially since it focuses more on humans than anthropomorphic characters.  As of now I only plan on it being a single novel, and even though it will tie into the Kingdom Come series that I’m working on, it will be a novel that you don’t need to read before you tackle The Kingdom Come series, nor visa versa.  It will be an entity of its own, yet still tied in somehow to the other series.  I guess you could call it a side story?  I still haven’t figured out the title for it yet, and I’m already in the middle of chapter 2 of this new creation.  I have a temporary title I suppose you can say, but I’m not too certain if I’ll be keeping it.

On a side note, if any of you are remotely curious on what it’s about, I plan on posting the first chapter here relatively soon once I bounce around a couple new ideas that have come to mind.  I can’t promise it will be the final result after it’s undergone some editing, but from the looks of it I can’t see it looking much different than it does now.  Just think of cops, werewolves, and cross-world inter-dimensional travel!

One of the things I’ll be purchasing is a good editing book, something that can help guide me so I won’t have to put out a ton of cash for a professional (even though I would love to hire one if I could afford it.)  I’ve already been given a few suggestions but anyone interested in suggesting any more I will happily consider it.  Now all I have to do now is battle with the greatest enemy of all when it comes to working on any project in the literary realm….. TIME!

 

Slowly getting back into the swing of things.

Well, all is well on the home front.  Gabriel is 5-months old and being the nap terrorist like most babies are *laughs.*  The job is…well…the job.  I had signed papers for an increase in salary with the department I work for until that got blown out of the water due to our beloved democratic governor screwing up on the state budget, which brought us from a projected surplus down to a massive deficit…  But I won’t get into that, because it’s just all-out depressing and I can write a whole blog post on it.

So Raphael has been calling out to me… yes, the main character in my novel series.  I’ve lately been craving to shut myself away in my man-cave for hours out of the day and just write.  I’m nearly done my first short-story that I had planned to be one of many to help get my name out in the literary world, but deep down I just want to return to Galantis and start on book two.

I had to sit down and start educating and reevaluating the course of where I wanted my novel series to go and how to get there.  After initially doing research on ways of publishing my work, it was suggested over and over to find a literary agent for most fantasy fiction genre.  Yet the ideas of self publishing had began to cross my mind.  But I easily dismissed them for a while because I didn’t want to just jump into that out of discouragement from not finding an agent that would take my work yet.  In other words I didn’t want to give up when the going got a little tough.  After all, I even learned something about the book that made me alter it for an even better beginning.

After reading a couple good articles on the pros and cons of self-publishing and traditional publishing (which I will happily share links to at the end of this post,) I’m starting to strongly consider the route of self-publishing.  Primarily – if for nothing else – the fact of selling rights to a publisher who can change the title, format, or whatever the hell they want on my book whether or not it is to my liking.  I understood that some rights had to be given up when doing business with the publishers, but I didn’t realize it was to this extent.  Maybe in future books that I write this won’t be such a problem, but The Kingdom Come is my ‘baby.’  I know I would be devastated if they had to change content in my book that I’ve spent years writing, rewriting, and rewriting again while creating a world from the pure fathoms of my imagination.  I think I would reach across the desk at someone who said something like, “I think the lokari race is a bad idea, we’re going to call them furumans and rewrite how they come into existence.”  I mean seriously… I MADE UP the term ‘lokari’ to begin with!

What has also spiked some hope in the thought of self-publishing is the idea if I market my book(s) well and they do become a best seller, then a publishing company may seek me out and if I so choose to go with them, the likelihood of them wanting to change the content would be slim to none because I’m already doing so well sale-wise without them.  The only thing I will be disheartened about is the fact my first published work won’t be an actual, physical, fresh-page smelling book that I’ve always imagined.  Eventually it will, but not until a publishing company wants my work or I make enough money to fork out the fees needed to print my own work.  Until then… it will be eBooks.

I feel like this is the phase of my authorship that falls under research for a while.  I still don’t have the time that I need and desire to write as often that I want with having the new baby, but nothing says I can’t educate myself as much as I can on the art of self-publishing and everything that goes with it.  The next decision I would have to make is if I do decide to self-publish, will I wait until Part 2 of The Kingdom Come is written out and finished?  Or will I publish Part 1 and then start on Part 2 after?

Anyhow, kids are waking up, time to feed the brood and get on with my day.  Here are those articles that I read in regards to self-publishing vs traditional publishing.  There are many more out there but these are the two I found time to read through.  I encourage you do the same if you are thinking of self or traditional publishing.

 

6 Reasons you should self publish – http://www.thebookdesigner.com/2014/08/tiana-warner/

Pros and Cons of Traditional Publishing and Self-publishing – http://www.thecreativepenn.com/self-publishing-vs-traditional/

Postponed?

So it’s been about a few weeks since I’ve touched my short story – which is coming along quite well.  The ideas were just flowing and flowing and they still do when I get a few moments to sit down and go at it.  But I won’t lie, I don’t see myself writing much at all in the coming months unless I get lucky with my time.  I’m a little sad about it, but hey, it’s all for a good reason considering my baby boy came home on the 18th (this past monday) after being in the NICU for a month.  So as you might be able to tell, a LOT of my time has been taken up with many hours of caring for my son and then handling the other two lol.  And even if he’s down napping and I have a few minutes to breathe, I’m probably napping myself to catch up on the lost sleep from the night before.

In addition, I’m going to be back to work in about a week.  The five weeks of paid leave has been nice, despite the circumstances of Gabe being in the NICU, I needed a break from the road.  So between work, the new baby, and everything else, we’ll see how my time is when it comes to writing… or if I even have any brain cells at the end of my day to do anything.

The one thing I have been procrastinating BIG TIME on is submitting my newly revamped manuscript on The Kingdom Come.  Been several months since I finished the new edition – I guess I got somewhat exhausted from all the time spent submitting to the agents before, that the thought of doing that all over again already tires me.  Plus, as I stated before it is a time issue with me.  I don’t always have hours out of the day to sit at my desk and read over all the criteria each agent has when submitting work.  So I would choose to either work on that or my short story… and lately it’s mainly been my short story that wins.

So who knows, maybe the little time I do find here and there to work on my writings will be devoted to resubmitting my manuscript.  I am kinda curious to see what some agents have to say now about it… Although I’m partly nervous of more rejections with ‘I just can’t get into it’ lines.

Other than that, sorry I have nothing super important or huge to talk about, but I am thinking about submitting a taste of my short story on here for anyone to download and read.  So stay tuned!

March 22nd

I meant to post an update on life events and what I’ve been doing with my short story… but at 5 am in the morning, unable to sleep and wishing I was home with my family, this is all that wanted to spill from the heart. So I just let it be so.

Happy Birthday to my sweet boy Gabriel 🙂

It’s been quite a journey so far. At 9:20am on a Tuesday morning, the world seemed perfect and innocent during those first few moments as you took your first breath. I got to finally see that perfect little face I’ve been dreaming about and wondering what it would look like. And those limbs… the ones that would make Mommy cringe in discomfort when you would kick and stretch, yet in the same breath make her smile as comfort washed over her already glowing face. I was sure to savor this pregnancy, because I knew for certain you were the last one. And that was ok, because God knew that three sons would satisfy.

My family feels complete now that you’re in our world. But the journey isn’t over… because you haven’t come home with us yet. You came a little early but it was expected. And like all my boys you came out big and strong, sometimes a little too strong for your own good. Your lungs had a little hard time keeping up with that hefty mass of awesome and cute. So you had to stay a little longer, heck, even get a helicopter ride to another hospital where they could look after you better! Which of course made Daddy a little jealous… he’s NEVER been on a helicopter ride yet!

It is nearly two weeks later since your birth and you haven’t come home yet. But that’s ok, because Mommy and Daddy still get to see you, and even your brothers have gotten to see you often too. You have wonderful nurses who you continue to steal the hearts of (that’s my boy!) with your cooing, crying, and sheer hunk of baby cuteness. But most importantly your lungs have gotten strong over time and can hold their own now. Next, we just wait for you to gather more strength to feed like your suppose to. Don’t fret though, don’t strain, my son. Like your name states, “God is my strength,” you continue to show everyone how true it is. You have already saved a life while being less than a day old despite your own body needing help. Now continue to gather strength, my son, my little arch angel, so you can finally come home to us.

Mommy and Daddy are waiting patiently.