Wednesday, January 28, 2015

When Life Gets In The Way

Last week I finished the first few drafts of, Stone's Curse, a novella I starting working on last autumn. As my editor suggested, I'll set the manuscript aside for a month, and then give it one more review with fresh eyes in late February. And then off to my editor. In the meantime, I started working on an unplanned sequel.

But something happened. Life got in the way. In a good sort of way.

An old friend, Warren Honeycutt, asked me to produce a series of videos for him about fitness, nutrition and weight loss management. Warren is the ultimate guru on this subject. He is a six time finalist (count 'em, six) at the NPC Nationals - a.k.a. Mr. America. At age 61 (he turns 62 in a week or two), the man is in far better shape than most twenty- or thirty-somethings. Companies like LiveStrong and Life Extension rely on his expertise. He's on various television programs showing us regular Joe's how to stay fit too. He's a motivational speaker, author, trainer, and basically, an all around nice guy.

I'm currently in the process of editing seven DVDs that will eventually become part of a course entitled "Get Lean For Life." In this series, Warren teaches you how to put your fitness and nutritional goals on autopilot - something he has been doing since age 16. Amazing!

Well, the diversion from authoring books has been a treat, but soon I'll return to the editing process of "Stone's Curse", and then back to work on its sequel - which was never planned, by the way. Sometimes things just happen. In a good sort of way.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Update On Novel #3

I'm making good progress on novel #3. Yet unnamed, I am growing comfortable with a title I devised in the last day or so. I'm also happy to report that I've retained the services of professional editor, Nicole Busch. Here's a brief synopsis and a few quotes from the book.
Confirmed bachelor, Martin Gallagher, sold his condo and moved to a house in the country. No one told him the property is haunted until a local psychic divulges a curse placed on the house 100 years ago.

"The house needed spiritual purification and Madam Zelda appointed me chief exorcist. Oh, joy."

While courting his attractive new neighbor, Martin must convince the spirit of a previous owner to help lift the curse. Not even the medium is prepared for the aftermath.

"I recalled Madam Z’s advice—avoid Agnes…have nothing to do with her. Yet here I was, drool on my chin, tangled in her wicked web. What was I to do?"
Get ready for an outrageously funny and wicked romance as Martin falls prey to a spell of his own devices.
"She walked in as if she owned the joint. A hundred years ago, she did."
I hope to finish the first draft by the end of January, 2015. I'll let it percolate for a month, give it another going over with a pair of fresh eyes, and then send the manuscript off to Nicole in March. With luck, perhaps the final product will be available sometime this summer. I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year | 2015 Plans

I've never been much on New Year's resolutions. Every year is the same for me. Try to stay healthy and fit. Treat others as I want to be treated. Finish what I start. You know the routine. So I see no reason to set myself up for failure by resolving to do something I have no intention of following through on.

Looking back on 2014, I'd like to thank everyone who picked up copies of my two books. Back in July, A Door Unlocked reached #1 and The Epitaph of Jonas Barloff hit #2 in the Kindle store, followed in December with A Door Unlocked climbing as high as #4. These milestones exceeded my wildest dreams.

I continue to work out five or six days a week at my local gym. Tina, my group leader, keeps me motivated and continually convinces me that my body is capable of doing things I didn't think possible.

So what's up for 2015? I'm on track to complete the first draft of my third book in January. It's actually a novella. Here's the synopsis:

A bachelor buys a haunted house in the country, and while dodging spirits and courting his new neighbor, a local psychic helps him exorcize the ghosts living in his home. “Ghosts in the Sycamores” (working title which may change) is a humorous story about romance and things that go bump in the night.

I also have a short story (only 1800 words) about my favorite sport, which I plan to release here and/or on WattPad on opening day of Major League Baseball - a free read. (Oh, by the way, I'll be umpiring baseball games again this spring and summer. Last year I got to umpire four Dizzy Dean World Series games. It doesn't get any better than that!)

And then there are the two children's books that I wrote several years ago which still need polishing. If there are any aspiring illustrators out there willing to work for peanuts in order to build a resume, give me a shout. My email address is in the upper right corner of this website.

I'm also considering audiobook production for The Epitaph of Jonas Barloff and my new novella. A Door Unlocked is already an audiobook and has done quite well.

Well, that's it. I've certainly filled my plate for 2015. I'm sure some of it will fall by the wayside, and that's okay. There's always 2016. So for now, Happy New Year to you and yours. A toast to good health and happiness. May all your wishes come true.