Runic Revolt to be published by August 30th!

Runic Revolt will be published at or before August 30th. I'm wrapping up the last edits, and formatting the book for publishing. It's been a fun ride going back to Kyle, Kalibar, and the rest of the crew! I'm looking forward to more books in the series.

I'm also three hundred pages into Destroyer of Legends, the third book in the Fate of Legends series. That will be published in January of next year.

I'll be starting a brand new fantasy series in September, one that I'm very excited about. I'm also looking forward to the World Fantasy Convention in Baltimore in November! I'll be there with my wife, as usual, and hope to see some of you there!

Runic Revolt Preview Updated

Runic Revolt, the 4th book in the Runic series, is nearly complete! I've done one round of editing, and am busy with the second - and likely final - round. It will be published in August.

I've updated the preview on my website to include the prologue and first two chapters...and I'll have a cover reveal soon!

In the meantime, I've completed about 80 pages of Destroyer of Legends, the third book in the Fate of Legends series. After I finish that, I'll be starting a whole new fantasy series!

Runic Revolt - 1st Draft Complete!

The first draft of the fourth book in the Runic series is done!

It's been quite the journey over the last three and a half months. I came back from doing the Fate of Legends series to start writing Runic Revolt, and for about a month I wasn't quite into it. The writing was fine, but I wasn't feeling it. It didn't excite me.

I wondered if I had another Runic book in me. If I'd ruined my momentum by writing a different series.

But then my muse struck with full force, and filled the book with meaning and purpose. I just needed a reason to write the fourth book...a theme that excited me. Thank goodness I found it!

Now I know that not only do I have a fourth book in me, but that I have even more as well. I look forward to editing the heck out of Runic 4 over the next month or two, and then seeing what you guys think about it!

Goodreads Giveaway Failed!

Every once and again I try new marketing ideas to bring more readers to my books. A while back I decided to try a Goodreads Giveaway, where I offered to give away three free copies of one of my books. As you may know, I love to talk about the numbers...and let me tell you, they weren't good.

A total of 605 people requested the book, and 241 people put it on their "to-read" list. Of these, precisely zero people put it on their "currently reading" list.

Now, there are several possibilities for why this happened.

  1. The book cover didn't attract any readers to actually read it.
  2. The blurb for the book is failing to convert potential readers into readers.
  3. Giveaways aren't an effective way to promote books.
  4. Giveaways attract mostly people who collect free stuff (leading to #3).

Either way, I didn't find the giveaway useful, and although I may try it again with a different book, it certainly makes me question the value of using Goodreads' new ebook giveaways. Those cost $119 for the regular giveaway of up to 100 ebooks, and $599 for premium listing of the same. With no guarantee of ROI - and for $599, an almost certain loss of about $599 - I can't justify these promotions as a viable way to market my books.

 Has anyone else had better luck with these promotions? If so, let me know!

Six weeks till Readercon!

Only six more weeks until Readercon in Quincy, MA!

I'll be there for the whole convention, and I'm looking forward to it! My goal is to have the fourth book in the Runic series either published or pretty darn closed to it by that point. I'm about 70% of the way through writing it, and working hard to finish on time.

After that, I'll be working on Destroyer of Legends, the sequel to Seeker of Legends. And then it'll be time to start a whole new series, one I've been thinking about for the last year and a half.

As usual, I'll keep you posted. Hope to see you at Readercon!

Update on Runic Revolt

I'm about halfway done with Runic Revolt, the fourth book in the Runic series!

Lots of new stuff in this one. Working hard to finish it by this summer, hopefully before Readercon! It's quite the lofty goal, considering the first book took years to finish, the second took over a year, and the third took ten months to complete. I'll do my best, but I won't compromise quality.

I'm posting another chapter to the preview on my site. You can click here to read it. Keep in mind that there might be small errors here and there, as I haven't done my usual three to four rounds of editing yet!

Sorry for the Delay!

I'm nearly ready to publish Seeker of Legends!

The major roadblock has been getting my usual beta readers (my wife and brothers) to read and tear apart the book. Life has been overwhelmingly busy for them...but the feedback process is nearly complete!

In the meantime, I've been working hard on Runic Revolt, the fourth book in the Runic series. It's coming along quite nicely...almost 40% complete! I'll keep you updated as usual. The best place to check for my progress is on the home page. Each book has a bar graph showing my progress. I update it almost daily.

All right...back to writing Kyle's next adventure!

Why I wrote Hunter of Legends - Racism, Nationalism, and the Self

I am white, and my wife is black. When our son Hunter was born, it was right around the time of the Presidential election in the U.S. The themes of nationalism vs. globalism, racism, and cultural genocide were - and are - front and center in the minds of many Americans. Not to mention the fact that my wife and I were still getting strange - or downright angry - looks and comments from people (of several races) that didn't approve of our union.

And as a writer - and a father to a biracial son - I wanted to understand it.

I think of fantasy as a way to explore elements of human nature by changing the rules of the world to address these elements. To expose them and play with them. So I created a world where everything about you - your appearance, personality, skills, memories, and so on - was potentially contagious. Where strong-willed individuals could pass on their traits to weaker-willed people. And where the strongest-willed of all were called Legends. Those who cannot be changed, yet can change anyone else.

Naturally, this led to a society where people who spend enough time with each other ended up acting and looking like each other. And where an outsider - someone with dark skin, or a different way of thinking - would pose a real, tangible threat if their will was strong enough.

By making the idea of cultural genocide a very real possibility, I was able to explore the feelings both sides might have about it. The ideas of self, of community, and of what makes a people one people. Is it the way they look? The way they act? Their belief systems, or religions, or rituals?

And how do you remain yourself when everyone around you can change who you are?

I hoped that, by exploring these issues through fantasy - and by placing Hunter within that story, and seeing how he might react to such a world - that I could further my understanding of these important issues. I also wanted to write a story for Hunter that he might read when he's older that could help him process these issues as well.

I found that, in writing Hunter of Legends, I often ended up enjoying the characters I disagreed with the most. And I think that, if we all spent a little more time trying to understand each other - without necessarily having to agree with each other - that it would be a good start toward building a better future for our children.

If you're interested in reading Hunter of Legends, click here for a preview of the first 3 chapters, or click here to get it from Amazon!

Progress Updates

I'm having a little trouble with the web site, which is hosted by Squarespace. For some reason, the bar graphs showing my progress with each book aren't editable. Which is too bad, because I've made quite a bit of progress!

I'm finishing the final edits for Seeker of Legends, and the cover is complete. After I finish the edits, I'll format and publish it. Should be mid-March or so.

For Runic Revolt, the fourth book in the Runic series, I'm about a quarter of the way through the first draft.

As usual, I'll keep you posted!

To read a preview for Seeker of Legends, click here.

To read a preview for Runic Revolt, click here.

A Note on Editing

I'm in the process of editing and completing the final draft of Seeker of Legends, the second book in the Fate of Legends series (for a preview, click here).

To edit my first drafts, I print them out, 2 pages on a side, double-sided. I hole-punch them and put the book in a three-ring binder, and go through it with a red or blue pen, making changes and additions as I go. When I'm done, I make these edits on the word document.

I usually do this process 2-3 times, sometimes reading the book backward (from the end). Each time, I make a few thousands changes, and do a complete spelling and grammar check afterward. The process takes a month-and-a-half to two months. It's a lot harder than hiring an editor, but also much cheaper!

One day, I might hire an editor, if it becomes cost-effective to do so. But with books over 150,000 words, it can get awfully expensive.

That being said, if you find an error in one of my books, feel free to let me know at If I agree it's a mistake, I'll gift you one of my books!

Pantsing vs. Outlining

When I write a book, I usually have a very clear idea of the world, most of the characters, and the beginning, a scene in the middle, and the ending. I let the rest be created on the fly, so to speak. A process than writers call "pantsing," or flying by the seat of your pants.

For Destroyer of Legends, one of the two books I'm working on now, I've decided to try outlining the entire book first, then filling it in. It should be an interesting experiment, and I'll let you know how I feel about it vs. my usual method of writing my novels!

Announcing Book 4 in the Runic Series: Runic Revolution!

Hi guys!

So after finishing the first draft of Seeker of Legends and sending it to my family for review, I've decided to continue on with the fourth book in the Runic Series: Runic Revolution.

I'm already a fifth of the way through, and am writing daily to finish the first draft. I hope to have it finished by the summer. I've already contacted Bookfly Design LLC, the creator of my book covers, to have a cover made for it then!

For a preview, click here. As always, I'll keep you updated on my progress through my bar charts on the home page of my website!