Sunday, September 15, 2013

Awesome News

The League of Utah Writers held it's annual Convention at the Airport Hilton this weekend. I entered the first chapter of, "The Singing Stones of Rendor" into the contest. I hoped it would get an honorable mention or perhaps third place. 

It took "First Place" in the Leagues "First Chapter Category". My wildest dreams are possible, afterall. Judith, my wife and muse, deserves a great deal of the credit for this chapter because she suggested it in the first place. Then there are all my beta readers who have, and still do, contribute to the refinement of the book. Thank you all.

Though they spelled my name wrong the certificate is proudly posted below.

When this chapter was finished, and I applied all those hard-learned lessons, I felt very good about it. It had undergone a number of revisions which all came together to surprise even me. My muse gushed about it and said it was wonderful, but, you know . . . she might be a bit biased. My beta readers caught a few errors and made suggestions about expanding some significant points. 

In the end, with the League of Utah Writers Award, I feel like my skills have reached a milestone. It may be the first public milestone on a long road, but at least I'm on the right/write road. 

Thank you, beta readers.

Please join me on facebook. I have an author's page which will compliment this blog.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Sails Sag

Progress with the book has sagged a bit. The wife (a.k.a. Muse) fell ill for about a week. Then the prescription to cure her made her sick for another week until that nasty pill was changed. She has recovered and feeling better now.

Progress on the book was made. Chapter 14 to 18 are done and awaiting my muses remarks.

Then came Salt Lake City's first ComiCon this past weekend. I planned on going all three days, but when Saturday rolled around I was too pooped to haul myself downtown.

The crowds were huge. I arrived Thursday afternoon about 5 PM and stood in line an hour just to register. Then got into another line to get onto the convention floor. Both Thursday and Friday the convention center and meeting rooms were packed. The video below was taken at 4:45 PM Friday. The throng didn't let up until after 8 PM. Even then the convention floor was still doing a brisk business. Other than some grumbling about how the event was organized everyone was in good spirits and eager to be 'assimilated into the collective' (refer to a Star Trek fan for definition. To my knowledge the Borg Queen was a no-show, which is probably for the best).

There were several authors and publishers with booths. I focused on booths selling books in my genre (epic fantasy) and talked to two authors at some length. Holli Anderson and Jason King shared a booth purchased by their publisher Curiosity Quills Press. I purchased a book from each of these local authors. 

Curiosity Quills has a unique query system which I happen to like, mostly because it is based on the honor system in which you have to honestly ask yourself "Are you ready?". No formal query letter is submitted, but . . . you'd better have your duckies jack-booted and marching straight. The questions they ask you are blunt and to the point.

That said, both Holli and Jason have an excellent relationship with Curiosity Quill Press. Its a hybrid publisher which has placed both hard copy and ebooks in Barnes & Noble, Amazon & Goodreads. Jason said he has a book on the shelves of B&N. Holli just got her book published this past week, so she's still looking forward to that opportunity.

My initial impression of Curiosity Quill Press is good. The book covers are well done, the paper and printing seems top notch. I'll be doing more research on them as the day draws near for submitting "The Singing Stones of Rendor" to a publisher.

All I have to do is answer that scary question, "Am I ready?"