Sunday, January 27, 2013

Frame by Frame


It has been a very productive week.  Now that I have all the edits completed on Zegin's Infection, I went back and applied what I learned from Debra and did revisions to "The Wings of Leonardo" (WOL), "Invis", and "Jezi's Delima".  I received a rejection of WOL from Orson Scott Card's Intergalactic Medicine Show (Whew, what a title!)  So, I just turned it aournd and I submitted WOL to Escape Pod in the hopes it will get picked up for their podcast magazine.  Escape Pod is pretty cool.  They turn the stories into spoken podcasts for their subscribers to listen to.  I think it's a great idea and I'm actually pretty excited about the prospect of having WOL as a narration.  I also submitted "Invis" to Kasma SF Magazine.  I figure I'm paying my dues for having it so easy in the non-fiction market.

   Non-Fiction : 42 articles, 3 manuals, 2 Books - only 2 rejections
   Fiction : 14 rejections & no sales yet

What a difference!  But it is a totally different market and industry.  Basically, it's as if I'm starting as a brand new writer.  However, I do know that eventually I will sell something.  One of my goals is to not just get a sale but to be able to meet the criteria for joining SFWA (Science Fiction Writers of America).  One sale will make me eligible for an Associate Membership.  Three sales of short stories or one novel will make me eligible as an Active Member.

Frames of Art

Sean Hill has been making great progress on the cover for Zegin's Infection.  He's been a pleasure to work with.  I really appreciate that he's willing to ask for and receive feedback about the art.

This is the first concept drawing that Sean provided to me.  To get to this point I provided Sean with a copy of the story and a small sample of the type of art that I was looking for.

(BTW: All of these pictures are Copyright (c) 2013, Sean Hill.  Please do not copy and/or distribute without written permission from Sean.)

The next piece that I received from Sean shows a significant amount of work.  This provided me with a view of the textures that he was using and content of the spaceship loading dock.  However, I felt that some of the perspective angles were not quite right and I provided some feedback to him by overlaying the red lines (from SnagIt).  Turns out he was already aware of the issues with the perception lines and had started on fixing those.
As can be seen in this next piece, the perception lines have been fixed and Sean is beginning to do more work on the interior of the spaceship.

When I received this next piece I had a "Oh, wow!" moment.  I love what Sean is doing with the textures.  I provided some feedback about the light sources and the hovering d-rack behind Zegin.

While Sean is not done with the cover art yet, I wanted to at least give a glimpse of the process.  One of the things that was hammered into us writers at the Edmonds Write On the Sound conference, is the need to have professional and quality editing and art for anything targeted for the eBook market.

It has become so easy for anyone with a story idea and a computer to just throw something together and throw it up on Amazon with the expectation that it's going to become a huge success.  However, the truth is that a lot of "junk" writing is appearing on the market with poor grammar, inconsistent story lines, and clip art covers.  The author might get some sales initially.  But sadly, as we all know, first impressions are the most important and the sales dry up.

Personally, I think it's great that writers now have a new medium for expression.  And with quality work, it is very possible to get to market in the span of a few months instead of the traditional 12 to 24 months for printed media.

I'm far from being an expert in this side of the fiction industry.  I'm learning as I go along.  And I'm hoping that this preliminary work, time, and investment will pay off.  I don't plan on breaking even with Zegin's Infection.  But I do plan on using it to introduce myself to the market.  If all goes well, more Zegin stories will follow (2nd is in the works), the audience will grow, and readers will find as much enjoyment in reading my stories as I have found in creating them.

Social Media Progress

Here are my latest statistics for this past week:

Klout Score: 48 (+2) Page Loads for the past month: 1041 (+125)
Twitter Followers: 761 (+148)
G+ Peeps Following: 218 (+9)

Great progress, especially with Twitter.  My goal is to have 1k+ followers by the time Zegin's Infection is ready for release.

I really appreciate the follows and I hope I'm providing a good forum and example of how someone can get published in the fiction market with some time and effort.

I'm Reading

Part of being a good writer is being a good reader.  If you're not spending time reading then you're not going to be able to be a good writer.  Plain and simple - fact of life.

I just completed "7th Sigma" by Steven Gould.  It was a good read and I enjoyed it.  But it did take me a bit of time to get wrapped up in it.  I would recommend it if you're a hard core Steven Gould fan.

Currently reading:
  • Impulse by Steven Gould
  • The Double Bubble Murders by Azalia Yadinah-Parker (a very entertaining short story well worth the price).
  • Write Good or Die by multiple authors and edited by Scott Nicholson.  Currently free and I highly recommend it.
 In the queue:
  • APE How to Publish a Book by Guy Kawasaki & Shawn Welch
  • Master-Mind by Maria Konnikova (How to Think Like Sherlock Holmes)
  • Collapse by Richard Stephenson.  Proof that Twitter works.  I discovered this writer on Twitter.

Whew!  My short post became a lot longer than I anticipated.  Thanks for reading and feel free to drop me a line here, on Twitter, or on Google Plus to let me know if you're enjoying the posts.

Keep on reading.


  1. Awesome! Glad you're giving my book a try (proof that Googling yourself works, LOL)

    1. Indeed it does Richard. I hope others find me on Twitter as well. ;) I wish you much success with the book. It's next on my list once I get done with Impulse.