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Archive for the ‘My Writing’ Category

Well, it’s been a heck of a week. My daughter, Lucy Marie Lopez, was born Nov. 23, 2010, and it’s been a roller coaster ride from beginning to end. I’ve been changing diapers, entertaining, cooking, changing diapers, and yes, even writing (but not much, to be sure)! Unfortunately, in that same passage of time we lost some notable celebrities, in particular, Irvin Kershner, director of, among others, The Empire Strikes Back. That’s right, for those of you who aren’t die hard fans of the Star Wars films (myself included), George Lucas only directed the first of the original trilogy, which probably has something to do with why they’re held in such higher regard than  the latest installments of the toy obsessed franchise. This seldom mentioned fact got me to thinking: here was a man who avoided the limelight for the sake of his craft, whose passion for his work overrode is desire for recognition, admirable qualities, no doubt, but should they be emulated by aspiring writers?

So often on blogs and Twitter I see writers tooting their own horns, speaking with such confidence that one can’t help but listen/read. I know that I should be doing the same thing, but knowing and executing are two very different things. I don’t care if I don’t have hundreds of followers or blog subscriptions, but I don’t want to shoot myself in the foot either. So the question is, can I effectively market myself and remain as humble and passionate about my work as Mr. Kershner, or should I jump on a podium and announce my presence from every outlet I can get my paws on? Probably the second, but I think I’ve come up with a viable alternative: the candy aisle.

Let me explain.

People are reluctant to invest in new writers. Lack of reviews, preponderance of alternatives, and general mistrust of so called “self-published authors” prevent consumers of digital media from shelling out money on little known authors. I don’t blame them. When I go the supermarket (which I try to avoid at all costs, as I much prefer farmers markets), I rarely, if ever, go with the intention of buying candy. But every so often, as I stand in line politely avoiding my bad habit of trying to figure out the lifestyle of the person standing in front of me based on what they’re buying, I’ll reach for whatever new twist on a classic candy has just come out. It’s cheap, and for all I know, I’ll discover a new favorite treat. The latest? Triple chocolate Kit Kats. Yum.

My writing needs a candy aisle. People should have access to a cheap taste of what I have to offer, and at $7.99, The Dead Don’t Cry isn’t going to cut it. So I’ve decided on running a series of short stories called Tales from Two Earths. Each one will feature different people, places, and events from the world of TDDC, and in so doing introduce readers to my writing for the bargain price of $.99 each. The first one is underway, and I couldn’t be more excited. At the very least, it’s better than beating my chest every chance I get. Unless I’m pretending to be Tarzan with the kids, in which case it isn’t nearly as exciting.

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The Dead Don’t Cry is complete!

For those still looking, I’ve been inactive for the last three months. It wasn’t for a lack of enthusiasm, but for a complete lack of time! I don’t know how some of you do it, but I needed to keep my eyes on the prize to see it through. Now that it’s finally done I can begin the next project, and return to the Cafe, with some changes, of course. Gone will be three posts a week, one is much more realistic. I’ll also be abandoning the “In the Biz” feature…although that isn’t exactly written in stone. Hopefully this time I can keep the Cafe going!

In the meantime, The Dead Don’t Cry is ready! Have you seen the cover art??? Sure you have, I’ve attached it to this post:-P

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Well, this is exciting. Sketches for TDDC’s cover art are in, and they are fantastic! But don’t take my word for it…

The artist’s name is Jake Murry. I hired him for two reasons: he understands subtlety and the power of contradiction. TDDC’s cover must convey beauty and danger in equal measure, and if possible, an underlying sense of hope. Difficult themes to illustrate, but perfectly captured in the first sketch…so why is it so hard for me not to choose the second? I love its energy, composition, tilt, the immediate danger posed in its framing. I admit – this probably isn’t the best direction to take, and it would probably be better suited for, say, an image in a trailer. But I’m curious, what do you think? For those of you who haven’t read The Dead Don’t Cry, which would be more likely to draw your attention?

Looking forward to your input!

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Micro-brews. Expertly crafted pints of intoxicatingly delicious cerveza (yes, I just used a different language to avoid a future redundancy. Is that allowed?). My best friend and I had a couple of beers last night, and I can’t tell you how rejuvenated I feel right now. I wonder why that is? Our usual nights involve darts and lagers (cheap, American lagers), which are fun, but not quite as satisfying. Is that how people feel when they read genre fiction. And if so, what’s that like?

“Oh man, that was a whoot, but I need to get a literary fix quick or else my brain is going to rot.”

Or better yet, the equivalent to a genraholic: (more…)

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I have this number in my head that keeps going up. Three more edits… five… seven. This after reading my book for the umpteenth time, and after having beta readers edit it for me. It makes me wonder how the hell books ever manage to get published in the first place. I imagine some grammar robots spinning through the book the way Christopher Reeve did as Superman (what was he reading?), catching mistakes that somehow always sneak past me. It makes me wonder what happens to our brains when we write that allows for such complete and utter negligence. Does being in the zone suck up so much focus that grammar falls by the wayside? (more…)

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