Vampires of Michigan

Now available: The Vampires of Michigan

The day has come at last!

My eighth novel is available in paperback as well as a download for the Kindle.

Those who have been following along will know that this is a bit different from my previous work.

While it (obviously) features supernatural elements, the core of the story is really about human behavior. 

This obviously includes love and violence, but it's also a meditation on self-defeating choices.  Zip Zimmer isn't a loser by circumstance so much as by choice.  Everyone experiences setbacks, but some people have the uncanny ability to create thwart themselves no matter how much help they get.

Yesterday, I attended the funeral service for my uncle, who was such a person.  Gifted, talented, witty and undeniably charismatic, he seemed destined for success.

And yet, he always managed to find a way to fail.

He died just short of his 70th birthday, and though none of the characters were consciously based on him, it's clear to me now that his influence is undeniable.

I've often said that you should write what you know.  I would qualify that by adding that we write best what we know best.

All of which is to say, if you want a fast-paced story about vampires in Michigan, you've found your book.  But there's more than that going on here.  I hope you enjoy it.

Vampires of Michigan goes to the editor

The re-write took about as long as I expected and involved some significant changes, but I think it was all for the better.

I'm not sure how this book will be received.  It's certainly different from my other works, though it shares some common points with Three Weeks with the Coasties insofar as it's set in the modern world and takes place over the space of a couple of weeks.

At any rate, I'm hoping to have it ready by the end of the month for your buying pleasure.

Looking ahead in 2020

Happy New Year!

It's 2020 and we still don't have moon bases or flying cars.  Weird.

On the other hand our "telephone" have more computing power than Apollo 11.  Weird how that worked out.

Looking ahead, I'm on schedule to get Vampires of Michigan published this month and then I will look at the long-neglected sequel to Battle Officer Wolf.  None of this is particularly earth-shattering, but I figured I'd get it out there.

I'm not a big believer in new years resolutions.  If something's worth changing, I change it.  In terms of goals, I tend to set those on my birthday.  At first it was because it lined up with the end of the school year.  It never made sense to me when people would get all worked up about doing things differently in the new year and then go back to the same class schedule when break was over.  Plus, I tend to date stuff to my age, rather than the calendar year. 

Still, for those who get into such things, good luck and hopefully 2020 will be better than 2019.

The Vampires of Editing

While I met my Thanksgiving weekend deadline for writing, editing is going very slowly.  I can't see having this book ready for publication until January.

This chief culprit is the uneven quality of the work.  I started writing this many years ago, cleaned it up over the summer, then took time off after my health scare and so the concepts continued to shift.

It think this will result in a better book than it would originally have been, but continuity is all over the place.  That takes a lot of time to fix on both ends - finding the mistakes and correcting them.

Writing can go surprisingly fast when you're 'in the groove' but I've never had a similar experience with editing.  It pretty much moves at the same glacial pace with frequent stops to avoid fatigue.

After that, the re-writing, which is also painstakingly dull.

Still, it keeps me off the street, so there's that. 

I will say that the unique origin of this project has made it harder than most.  Three Weeks with the Coasties was a much quicker edit.  Basically this is the worst of the lot. 

A productive holiday weekend

In addition to having a relaxing time with friends and family, I've managed to wrap up the first draft of my latest book, Vampires of Michigan.

To celebrate this, I created a new tag for it.  This will be my eighth novel for those keeping track at home.

I still need to finish the epilogue and then do a detailed edit.  One of the things I've noticed is that my drafts are getting...draftier.  That is to say, I'm focusing more on getting books finished than getting it right the first time.

I think this is a function of my experience with editing.  I've gotten better at doing cross-referencing and making master notes of description, character references, etc.  I also rely more on the hard copy than trying to do the heavy lifting on the screen.  Spell check is helpful, but it only goes so far.

And I need to remember to do it twice, because it's easy to botch something while making an edit.

Anyhow, no firm time frame on publication.  I suspect it will take a couple of weeks to get it presentable enough for my volunteer proofreaders, and then I have to get it formatted, which takes a while.  With luck, it will go live before Christmas, but January is looking likely.

After that, I'll look at Battle Officer Wolf's sequel.