ROW80: Getting Stuff Done

Yay! I managed to finish off last week’s hanging tasks on Sunday as planned! Even better, Athena is thrilled with the cover I designed for her upcoming release, and Sheri’s anthology is available on Amazon (see a couple posts down). I also completed the critique for my other writing friend. Caught up on other tasks Monday and yesterday, so back to the revision tonight.

If you’re doing ROW80, good luck!

ROW80: Half Met, and a Good Book

I met half of my goals this week, and plan (hope) to hit the other two today. The fact that my husband is out hunting today helps. I love hunting season. 😀

Here’s a recap:

  • Edit Chapters 7 & 8 of my RIP (revision in progress) – Done
  • Format anthology for Kindle, for my copy editor – Done
  • Design book cover for my beta reader – halfway done
  • Critique a chapter for my critique partner – halfway done

The formatting threw me off the other two goals, as I’d forgotten several gotchas I encountered the last time I did formatting for Kindle (in August, with Time’s Enemy). This time I wrote up a cheat sheet, so I will have that to refer to, and next time formatting should go much more quickly! What annoys me the most is I am a technical person, I can write HTML in my sleep (literally!), and this stuff is supposed to be easy!

My editing was more a matter of getting to it – once I did that, it wasn’t that difficult.

The next few chapters of my RIP aren’t too badly wrecked, so hopefully they will go faster. I also want to get the first half of the book to betas, so they can get started. So this week’s goals are to get Chapters 9-11 marked up, which will be the first half of the book. Then I’ll need to do the type-in for all so far, and go over it a second time for style, typos, etc.

My copy editor’s book is a good one for this week! If you’d like a slightly-spooky read for Halloween, check out Ghostly Tales by Sheri L. McGathy. It’s also available at Smashwords, and will soon be on Barnes and Noble and Apple’s iBookstore.

If you’re a goal-setter, how did you do last week? And good luck this week!

Time’s Enemy Now Available!

Time's Enemy CoverOne unwanted gift. One great wrong. One chance to make things right…

When a freak accident leaves Tony Solomon with the ability to travel in time, he becomes an unwilling initiate in the Saturn Society, a secret society of time travelers. Wanted by the Society for a crime he hasn’t yet committed, he seeks help from Charlotte Henderson, the woman whose life he saved decades before he was born. Loyal to the Society, Charlotte faces a terrible choice-condemn the man she loves and to whom she owes her life, or deny her deepest convictions by helping him escape and risk sharing his sentence.

Time’s Enemy is available for Kindle, Nook, and a variety of ebook formats on Smashwords and other retailers.  I’m also going to offer a discount coupon for Smashwords that will only be announced here, so check back soon, or better yet, subscribe!

Buy Time’s Enemy at Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Smashwords | All Romance eBooks

Print edition coming soon

book coverOn another note, Sheri McGathy’s short story “Promises” is now available in the Kindle Store as well! Many thanks to Sheri for letting me use her story as a guinea pig to learn Kindle formatting. If you enjoy epic fantasy and are looking for a quick read, give it a try! “Promises” is also available at Barnes & Noble and Smashwords, as well as iBookstore, Kobo, and other digital retailers.

Good Stories: “Promises,” by Sheri McGathy

Promises coverI’ll admit it, I’m not a big fan of short stories, and I probably wouldn’t have picked it up if not for the fact that (disclosure) Sheri McGathy is my cousin. Or maybe I would have, if I saw past the length and read the book description:

Shay, a Blade Whisperer, has made a promise. A promise she is determined to keep, no matter the consequences or the pain that promise might cause. She has searched long, following the countless whispers of forgotten blades, until one quiet whisper reveals the blade she seeks. And now that she’s found the bewitched dagger, she must fulfill her promise to set her lover free…by killing him.

Kill her lover to keep her promise to him? I’m so there! A buck-fifty on Smashwords, and “Promises” is on my netbook, ready to keep me from getting bored on the treadmill.

Probably the main reason I’m not big on short stories is because I prefer longer works, that can pull me into a complex plot with well-drawn characters I have plenty of time to get to know and love. So often, there just isn’t room in a short story to dig deep enough, and the conflicts stay small out of necessity to fit the length. Worldbuilding is often sparse.

“Promises” proved to be a great exception. Although there isn’t room to really plumb the depths of the main character, a swordswoman named Shay, we do get a full sense of her motivation and what compels her to go places, and do things, few women would in her world. Her emotions are well-drawn, and we quickly care about her and want to see her succeed, while making a terrible choice. McGathy excels at worldbuilding – despite the short space, the reader can easily get a picture of her world that’s torn apart by magic and continues to decay. Background information is dropped into the story in small bits, just enough to build on that picture and enhance the experience.

Best of all, the conflict, while simple, is not small (see story description), and the end ties in nicely with the worldbuilding, its background, and Shay’s past.

As a bonus, the ebook download includes another short story: “The Gift,” a very short (almost flash fiction), sleeping-beauty-esque tale.

So if you’re looking for something to occupy twenty minutes or so, and you enjoy a good fantasy story, check out “Promises,” available on Smashwords and B&N, and coming to Amazon’s Kindle soon.

Do you like short stories, or do you prefer longer works? I read mostly romance novels, but when it comes to shorts, I find the format works better – for me, at least – for fantasy, mainstream, or crime fic. Do you enjoy reading some genres more than others in short form? And would you recommend any specific stories for my next workout?