All The Exciting Newsy Things!

  1. From The Ground Up has a release date! Mark September 25 on your calendars, ladies and gents, because this is one book for writers you are not going to want to miss! πŸ˜‰ If you want to keep up to date with FGU, have access to early cover release, possibly ARCs, and definitely the chance to win free copies, you’ll want to sign up to the FGU notification list. Go here, sign up – you won’t be added to any other lists (including my main newsletter), you’ll ONLY receive pre-release and release info about FGU, and the list will be defunct after this year πŸ˜‰
  2. Any chance you’ll be near Edmonton, Canada on the aforementioned September 25? If so, block out 1pm to 3pm on your Sunday afternoon because I WILL BE IN TOWN!!! That’s right! I, the Australian author who is perpetually on the wrong side of the world for nearly EVERYTHING, am going to CANADA FOR THE FGU LAUNCH!!!!!! *\o/* SO. MUCH. EXCITEMENT. The release/signing will be at Variant Edition Comics πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚
  3. Also releasing this year (this is the year of releases, YAY!) is the Darkness & Good anthology πŸ™‚ Some of you have followed my and Liana’s little short story blog since its inception in January 2014; although it’s been on hiatus for a few months (mostly because Baby), we have plans to refresh it again in 2016, and an anthology of all your favourite stories — plus some brand new content — will be hitting the shelves in July. Again, subscribe to my mailing list to make sure you don’t miss out on the details.

 

So, that’s my exciting news for now. So many releases! An overseas trip! ALL THE GLEEFUL YAY!!!!

Also, mailing list. You should sign up. I love you!!! <3 πŸ˜€

(Also-also, FGU notification list. Just in case. O:))

A Writing Manifesto, Courtesy of 2015

I’d rather be writing. That’s not how I planned to start this post, but really, it’s what it all boils down to. 2015 was the year I managed to fall in love with writing again, and let me tell you, it was grand. After a very long slump that started in 2010 when I blitzed through the first draft of Sanctuary in 3 months and deepened when I got postnatal depression in 2012 (something that led me to actually quit writing for a while), in 2013 I starting crawling back to the light again by writing non-fiction. That continued into 2014 as I drafted From The Ground Up, my worldbuilding book, and into 2015 as I rewrote most of the book and added another 20,000 words. It was only in May of 2015 that I finally found my fiction mojo again: I drafted the first half of an urban fantasy that you’ll see one day, but not for a while yet πŸ˜‰

Then I had a baby. While I avoided depression this time and am immensely enjoying the baby stage (she says as Mr 3 gets out of bed for the fourth time in the last hour), it took a while to make time for writing again πŸ˜‰ But this time, the joy is still there. And I have Plans, y’all. More about that next week.

So while I could post stats from last year of words written and words edited and things done and all that, really, none of that matters. There’s only one thing that matters, and it’s this:

I’d rather be writing, because I love it.

The good news for you is that you’ll get to see quite a lot of that writing this year. The bad news for you is that, instead of committing to a more regular schedule for the blog as I’d originally planned, I’m going to spend my precious spare time doing what I love. I’m pretty sure you’ll prefer new stories to half-assed blog posts anyway, amirite? O:)

What would YOU rather be doing? I challenge you to spend more time doing it this year. Go on. I dare you. <3

Inkprint Press + Worldbuilding + Self/Small/Large Presses, etc – Vodcast!

I thought I’d make this easy for you to find (if you’re interested) by embedding it right here! Sorry about all the link confusion the other day πŸ™‚ You can either watch right here on the blog, click through below to watch it on youtube, or click here to head to the original post, where you can also listen to it as a podcast (no visual) and download the mp3 πŸ™‚

Okay, I’m Back.

Although those of you who’ve been reading for any length of time know that my version of ‘back’ is always a little sporadic and unpredictable at the best of times: let’s face it: I’m not great at regular blogging. That’s going to apply doubly this year, because – and although this has hit social media, I’m pretty sure I haven’t posted here – Minion #2 is due at the end of May, and in true Minion style this one’s been keeping me pukingly sick pretty much the entire flopping time. RAH.

Also, for those who care about such things, SmallBoy will be three and a bit when SmallGirl arrives; yes, this minion is female. Woot.

Right. On to more writingish things. I know it’s a month past time when people usually do their annual recaps and set their new goals for the year, but a) better late than never, b) I am ALWAYS late (despite my best intentions), and c) I actually had to wait for a few pieces of writing-related data to filter back in after Christmas/New Year before figuring out what I was doing this year.

2014

2014 was a chaotic year in many regards for my family, but writing-wise, it was the year of #FGU, more properly known as From The Ground Up. This is my non-fic book on worldbuilding for writers that will be coming out some time in the second half of this year – I’m working on edits at the moment, rah.

It was also the year wherein I co-opted the Twinny One,* Liana Brooks, into starting the Darkness&Good blog with me, whereon we post short, totally unedited stories somewhere between once a week and once a month, although we got better with that towards the end of the year πŸ˜›

Finally, 2014 was notable for me because Liana and I officially started using our self-pub imprint, Inkprint Press. Hurrah! Under this label in 2014, I launched my short story collection Cherry Blossom and Other Stories, my book of (church) plays Where Your Treasure Is, and the print edition of The 33 Worst Mistakes Writers Make About Dogs. Much excitement indeed.

Some quick overall stats:

  • Words edited: about 266,000
  • Words written: about 90,000
  • Words rewritten from scratch: about 8,000

Which means, I think, that if I was really rigorous about counting up every single word I wrote this year, I probably just cracked the 100k mark. Which is actually way better than I would have expected – I feel like 2014 was a pretty slow year for writing, but it turns out it was significantly better than 2012 or 2013! So that’s cool.

* She’s totally my twin. Just separated by the Pacific Ocean, about three years, and totally different sets of genetics. But, y’know. TWIN.Β 

2015

Where to from here, that’s the question. Now that I have all my data points, it looks like this year is going to be another ‘light’ year for writing. I had postnatal depression after SmallBoy and although I think I’m in a better place mentally with SmallGirl than I was at this point with SmallBoy, I absolutely can’t guarantee that I won’t get it again – and as anyone who’s experienced any kind of depression knows, it kind of puts a damper on creativity. On top of that, I have FGU due in and a much fuller workload this year than I’ve had before. So I have to plan for multiple small achievements, rather than any large ones this year.

Things I really plan to do:

  • Get FGU done and in on time so it can release on schedule in the second half of the year. My first book launch with a real publisher, you guys! So much excite.
  • Write enough short stories to stick to my once-a-fortnight schedule at Darkness&Good. I have the first quarter of the year scheduled already, so I need another 15 stories to make this happen.

Things I’d really, really LIKE to get done:

  • Liana has an awesome choose-your-own-adventure sfr novella ready to be published under our Inkprint Press umbrella – once I’ve done the editing.
  • Marked, my tiger novella from fifty million years ago, is in advanced editing stages. I’d love to pick this up again and finish it off so it too can be released.
  • I have a choose-your-own-adventure sfr novella of my own that’s about half done; top of the list for completion and eventual release.
  • Aphelion, another sfr novella (although NOT choose-your-own-adventure) is also half written, and even has a pretty cover ready to go.
  • Finally, Liana and I are tossing around the idea of a Darkness&Good 2014 anthology. There’s at least 45k of fiction there, the length of a decent novella or a short novel, and it’d be fun to do a print edition to sit on my shelf – after editing the stories first, of course πŸ˜‰

So. Nothing long and novelly, unfortunately, but if I can manage it Inkprint Press will see a decent number of new releases this year, so you’ll be well stocked on things to read – and hopefully, for the first time ever, you’ll get to read something of mine longer than a short story! πŸ˜‰

I think that’s all from me for now. What about you guys? What are you up to in 2015?

 

~Amy

Short Announcement Re: Books

Just a quick note to say that in the last week, all my self-pubbed material, published under the Inkprint Press label, has migrated from Smashwords to Draft2Digital (and if you’re an author looking to self-publish who hasn’t heard of Draft2Digital, go check them out immediately!! SO much better than Smashwords!!), and everything is now back online.

What this means for you as a reader in practical terms is not much: a few items have received a formatting overhaul (including Liana Brooks’s Seventy and Fey Lights) so the files should all look a lot cleaner and more professional now (thanks, D2D), and ALL of my works are now available EVERYWHERE.

Cherry Blossom eCover Where Your Treasure Is Forget - A Short Story With This RingΒ Fey Lights eCover Seventy eCover REALLies eCover

So, that book of plays, Where Your Treasure Is, that hasn’t been showing up anywhere since it was released in October thanks to a glitch in Smashwords’s system? It’s now available everywhere, and the print edition has been released too πŸ™‚ Is much pretty.

Also, Liana’s Fey Lights is coming out in print in March (YAY!!), and my short story collection To Dust is getting an overhaul as the print version transitions from Lulu to CreateSpace. I’ll let you all know when the new version is out; expect a bit of an editing tidy-up, significantly prettier formatting, and possibly an extra story thrown in as a bonus incentive πŸ˜‰

I think that’s all the administrivia for now. Hoping to post again later in the day with a more cohesive look at what happened in 2014, and what I’m hoping for in 2015 :o)

~Amy

Announcements and Stories and Adminy Glories!

Because who doesn’t love a good rhyme, amirite? O:)

ANYway. I meant to post about all this two, maybe three weeks ago, but then the site went down because I tried to update wordpress, and then I was away for a week because my darlingest baby sister graduated from high school, and then Stuff. And Things. And probably a lot of Nonsense.

Anyway (redux). Here we are. It’s nearly the end of September (behold, the terror!!) and I am staring down the barrel of a scant 9 more school weeks until summer/Christmas holidays. This, my friend, is a Very Exciting Thing.

But not the Thing I am here to discuss. Man, this is becoming entirely circumlocutious. *ahem*.

POINT NUMBER ONE:
Woo, I have a new book that will be releasing at the end of October! *o/* *

It is a very niche book, one that will doubtless not interest many people, and that was a beast of a bleeding headache to format, but hey! It’s an addition to the line-up and there is a school that is maybe-possibly interested in buying a class set, so chalk that one up to a win. /nodnod.

Oh wait, you want to know what the book IS?! o.O Sure. That… makes sense. It’s called Where Your Treasure Is, and as the subtitle boldly proclaims, it is a book of seven Christian plays for young people. You’ll also note the cunning use of my middle initial in the author’s name bit; this is to serve as a warning flag for people who might not be interested in Christian-related Things, m’kay?

Look, there is even a pretty cover!

Where Your Treasure Is

 

So yes. It is a book of plays, I will create a page for it on the website sometime soonish, the page will show the back cover which lists the various plays and summaries thereof, and it will be available at the end of October. Depending on work and Other Things, I may be organised enough to organise a preorder period for the e-version, too.

Yay! Book!

POINT NUMBER TWO:
Point number two is less dramatic but probably of more general interest: Liana and I discovered we were more prolific in our earlier writing days (i.e. the last couple of years :P) than we had guessed, and the Darkness and Good short story blog now has fodder all the way through to mid-February next year (allowing for January off). Hooray! You can find a new short story there EVERY SINGLE WEEK, alternating between Liana and me, on a variety of sff-related themes. Stories for the remainder of the year will post US Friday/AU Saturday. Next year we’ll be switching to a US Mon/AU Tues schedule. Because, um, because??

But anyway: tl;dr – THERE ARE STORIES. FOR FREE. YOU SHOULD READ THEM HERE.

Thus concludes what is quite possibly the most rambly and least coherent blog post I have ever written. Oy. *Cookies* if you made it all the way through.

* *o/* is a cheerleader, arms up the in air, waving poms. Just in case I needed to clarify. Because my DARLING husband decided it was …something else. So I thought I’d better. Clarify, that is. *sigh*.

Nine Things

Because I have found Fun Things recently, and if you really expect me to write a thinky post between Christmas and New Year’s, you’re madder than I am.

1) Nine traits of creative people. This is, somewhat surprisingly, a very insightful article that made me sit back, smiling, and give the happy sigh of the Understood.

2) Photos from the 18 & 1900s of various dog breeds. While some pics demonstrate the sad lengths that breeders will go to, I feel somewhat vindicated by the fact that Labradors look very similar, then and now. Moral of the story: the more quinessentially DOG your dog looks, the more likely it is to be hereditarily health. #AmyWisdom.

3) Yoga for Handstands. Pics of the various yoga poses you can practise to help you learn how to do a handstand. New Year’s Resolution #1: learn to do handstand.

4) The Curiosities. A collection of short stories by Maggie Stiefvater, Tessa Gratton and Brenna Yovanoff, with random, illuminating, and sometimes hilarious annotations by the authors. Hands down THE BEST short story anthology I have ever read to date.

5) The Midnight Rainbow. A pretty, pretty, PRETTY book full of hope and imagination and the real, genuine magic that only comes from the mind of a five-year-old. You’d think a story narrated by a 5-yr-old girl would be simple; you’d be wrong. You’d think a story about a mother suffering postnatal depression after a stillbirth would be horribly, horribly sad; you’d be wrong. You’d think a story about night rainbows would be fantasy; you’d be wrong. You’d think that, because it’s not fantasy, there would be no magic; YOU WOULD BE WRONG*. This is the most beautiful, quirky, hopeful book I have read in a very, very long time. Also one of the most genuine. Please go read it now.

* Although if you are defining ‘magic’ narrowly as ‘supernatural occurences and the like’, then yes, you would be right. Not wrong. Moving on.

6) Paying for People’s Drive-Thru. Because there are people out there who know how to be Decent Human Beings, and we should celebrate them.

7) The Art of Oversharing, by Fizzy Grrl, because Important.

8) Earth’s poles are shifting due to climate change. Trufax. New Scientist said it so. /nodnod. One day, I could live in the NORTHERN hemisphere, y’all!!!*

* Without moving out of country. Obviously I could live in the northern hemisphere if I emigrated to, say, Russia.

9) And last but not least, if you haven’t seen the silent monks singing the Hallelujah Chorus, you’re in for a treat. Hurrah! πŸ™‚

 

So there you go. 9 things, just for you. Hope you’re having a wonderful holiday season :o) *cookies*

The Tour Begins…

First stop: Madison Louise!!

So, for most of this week I’m guest posting around the internet as celebration for the release of To Dust and Other Stories (SQUEE). Today, I’m over at Madison’s blog talking about my ‘daily’ writing habit (ha!).

Tomorrow, I’ll be over with Liana Brooks, discussing… something… that will be interesting… probably. Lookit me be organjised.

Tomorrow evening, because of time zone differences, I’ll be here squeeing like a hyperactive maniac about the fact that To Dust will have been released. EEEEE. There will be a giveaway, with prizes and everything.*

And then Halloween, I’m over at Beth Overmyer’s for a final hurrah!

 

Yay!! The book is nearly out,** you guys!!! So exciting!

YAY!!!

 

* “Everything” including information on how to get your digital mitts on an e-copy FOR FREE! For everyone! Unlimitedly until next year!

** In fact, if you look very carefully, it may already be out in at least one location. Note to Aussie buyers: shipping for the paperback is a million times cheaper if you let me know you want a copy and buy it directly through me. In fact, I may even have a buy button at some point to simplify that.

FREE Short Stories – Disappearing Soon

So, if you click through to the site, you’ll notice that a complete redesign is in progress. Hurrah!! As part of this, I’m posting today to let you know that I currently have EIGHT short stories available as ebooks. Previously, at least three of those were 99c. As of right now, they are ALL FREE.

However. (You knew that was coming.) Because of Things that are In The Works, three of those eight short stories will be pulled down at the end of October. You WILL NOT be able to get Shoe, Certified or The Wasporcist as free singles after October.

So if you’re interested in reading them for free, grab them while you can πŸ˜‰

(Note: I may be pulling down Sculpting, too, because even though it was published in a magazine, I’ve never been entirely happy with it. So fair warning: if you want that one, might be best to grab it before I change my mind.)

 

certified forget cover murder Sculpting Sea Foam & Blood shoe wasporcist with this ring