So I was thinking about my reading habits due to a few discussions on various websites, and I realized something: for the past six months or so, I’ve been reading a ton of indie published books and books published by very small publishers, and very few legacy published books. In fact, most of the legacy published books I’ve read in the past six months were purchased a long time ago and have been sitting in my to-read pile for awhile.

Since I got my Nook Color back in the spring, I’ve read ebooks by Amanda Hocking (indie), Zoe Winters (indie), Lindsay Buroker (indie), Greta van der Rol (small press), Kimberly Menozzi (small press and indie), Poppet (small press), Calista Taylor (indie), and Randolph Lalonde (indie). Print books I’ve read this year only include Stephen King’s Dark Tower Series (which I started reading last year) and Cherie Priest’s Boneshaker. Oh, and some books I either picked up at places like Big Lots (when they’re $2 apiece for a hardcover), or books that have been shared among myself, my mother, and my grandmother (like John Grisham’s A Painted House). Read More What I’m Reading: Indie vs. Legacy


There seems to be a certain camp in the writing and publishing worlds that feels like selling a novel at $2.99 is somehow devaluing that novel, and novels in general. The idea seems to be that readers will refuse to pay more than $2.99 for novels eventually, and that will somehow topple the publishing industry.

But no one is asking whether readers should pay more than $2.99 for most books. We’ve just accepted that paperbacks are priced at $8.99-$16 and that hardcover books are priced at $20-$30. And so we feel like ebooks should be priced somewhere along that line, too. But does anyone know why a mass market paperback is priced at $9? Or a trade paperback at $16? Or why a hardcover book is $25?

In the 1960s, a paperback book might cost anywhere from 25¢ up to around $.75 or so depending on the length, publisher, genre, author, and specific year (you can find evidence of these prices by looking at old book covers from that era). Now, a lot of these books were shorter than what we’re used to these days, coming in at around 150-200 pages. They were “pocket books”, in their truest sense: they would fit in your pocket. Read More Why $2.99 Doesn’t Devalue Your Work


There’s less than 10 hours left in November (in the EST time zone anyway), and I’m having my best sales month yet for The Steam and Steel Chronicles. I would…

Read More Pushing for 200 Sales!




So I plan to write book 3 of The Steam and Steel Chronicles during August (NaNoWriMo Summer Camp to be exact). But I have another book that was just about ready to go, in a different genre. I’ve decided to make a push to finish up some last-minute edits this week and release it ASAP. (I’m making an effort to finish projects this year, so anything I have that’s within a couple weeks of being finished is getting fast-tracked.)

The book is Hold My Hand. It’s women’s fiction with a strong romantic storyline (I’m not calling it romance due to some very un-romance story elements), set in Virginia. I had the first chapter up here for quite some time, but took it down because it’s not the most recent version. Read More New Book Coming Soon!


The structure of a novel can make or break it. If it’s well-structured—as in the pacing is good, the events happen in the most logical order (even if that’s not necessarily chronologically), and the characters do things you’d expect them to do—that’s more than half the battle. And if you’re lucky, the structure is pretty good starting with the first draft. Most of my novels/novellas are like this (now—maybe not in the beginning), but not all of them.

One of the novels I’m working on now wasn’t so lucky. The first draft was okay. It was actually pretty good until about 2/3 of the way through. And then it kind of fell flat. The ending sucked, to put it bluntly.

So on my first round of revisions, I rewrote the ending entirely. My protagonist made a better decision to start with, and then I added in a new twist after that, and then everything wrapped up more or less neatly. But I still didn’t really like it. I kept looking back at my original ending, wondering if there was something there after all. Read More Getting to a Coherent Draft


Taking a quick break from my Rules of Writing series to comment on an article on The Guardian’s website that appeared this morning (and that I found through the Absolute Write forums). The article, Are Stieg Larsson and Dan Brown a match for literary fiction?, written by Edward Docx, kinda pissed me off to put it bluntly. The basic premise of the article is that genre fiction, no matter how “good” it is, will still never be as good as “good” literary fiction. I can hear the hair on the backs of the necks of genre writers everywhere standing up on end from all the way over here in Vermont.  Read More Genre vs. Literary Fiction: A Rebuttal

Books Fiction

Since this is a writing blog, it’s only appropriate that I put out a gift guide for fellow bibliophiles. Now, most of the book gift guides out there include the best sellers from the big New York publishers, as well as some “lesser known” offerings from the independent publishers and small presses. And that’s fine. They have plenty of choices available to suit most book buyers and gift givers.

But I decided to do something different. I wanted this gift guide to be more personal. Read More Cyber Monday Gift Guide: Book Lover’s Edition


Here we are at day 18 of National Novel Writing Month and I’m proud to say that I’m still on track to reach 50k words by the end of November.…

Read More NaNoWriMo Day 18!

Craft Fiction