Tag Archive | anthology

The Launch of Titanium Flow

I’m excited to announce that I finally launched TITANIUM FLOW, a collection of cross-genre science fiction tales. I have a funny story about this book. Two of the stories I felt were “serious hard science.” I researched things like metaparticles, radiation poisoning, gamma rays, star systems, etc… and thought I had sound stories. So much so, that I was seriously proud of myself and a little pumped up at my ability to pull this off.

Well, not quite.

My 16 year-old son decided he wanted to beta the collection for me right before I was going to launch it last year. Literally two paragraphs into my first hard science tale he turned to me and gave me the “hairy eyeball.” You know, where his expression gets all cock-eyed, one eyebrow goes up and he appeared like he just sucked on a lemon?

“What?” I said, horrified. Did I forget a comma or spell something wrong? (he’s pretty critical that way). But no, it wasn’t that innocuous.
“Mom, you call yourself a hard science fiction writer? I don’t think so.”

Ok, now it got real. He read the rest of the tale as I nervously watched.

Finally, “What’s wrong with it?”
He shook his head. “Everything. How in the world do you expect anyone to walk on this planet with three suns those colors? How can liquid creatures exist in your desert climate without exploding? How can your astronauts just take off their helmets in a cave and be fine? Have you even thought about gravity, and the length of their days? You know, mom, you should really just stick to your fantastical science fiction tales, because they’re good and you can make stuff up, but hard science? I don’t think so.”

And you know what? He was absolutely right. If I couldn’t pass off my science to this kid, how was I going to do it to the fans I so desperately wanted to reach? So, I went back to the drawing board and fixed each of the things that my son said would throw off anyone who was a serious science fiction fan. It took me a long time. After a few months he beta’d it again and deemed them, “not perfect, but I guess acceptable.”

Gee, thanks kid. I guess that was as good as an endorsement as I was going to get!

So, please enjoy Titanium Flow for just 99 cents. My favorite story in there is THE SUN AND THE STAR which is a sweet, romantic science fiction short story and appeared in the Timeless Anthology. I think people will love it.

I just got my first 5 Star review, too!

“I honestly can say I haven’t enjoyed Sci Fi this much since I first dove into my first copy of Asimov’s SF magazine! The stories are well-written, the plot is character-driven, and the action never stops. Buy. This. Book!”

Pick up your copy here: TITANIUM FLOW https://amzn.to/2D8QG8V

Enjoy! I’d love to hear if you think I pulled it off!

In Honor of Halloween! Ricket Row for just 99 cents

A collection of creepy horror tales…

Hi friends! In honor of Halloween, I wanted to offer a special promotion of my best selling horror anthology RICKET ROW. I’m going to put it on-sale for just 99 cents for the rest of the month of October!

Many of these creepy tales were picked up on websites and magazines and then the rights were returned to me, so these are sure to please! http://amzn.to/2grmKIe

I love Halloween. To be honest, when I had kids, I thought I’d be the family that hosted a Halloween party every year. I was going to make the entire downstairs super creepy and for years I’ve been compiling spooky food recipes on my Halloween Pinterest Page. But alas, my twins thought a party would be lame. I was… crushed. I was going to do an adult party, but my husband is not into it either! What’s a girl to do? So I decorate the front of my house every year and call it a day. But, I do love Halloween and one day I will do a huge party and deck out my house to my heart’s content.

Please enjoy Ricket Row and let me know what you think! Happy Halloween. Bwaaaa haaa haaa!

Letting Go….

kellybuszekeThis was a hard weekend for me. Yesterday, for the very first time, one of my kids left for sleep-away camp. I’m not nervous for her at all, in fact I’m overcome and happy for her to get to experience this, but she’s never been away for this long and the “letting go” without the constant worry is stressful. Thankfully, they already posted a photo of her on their site and I got to see her smiling face. That made it all a bit easier.

But then today, kid #2 started a new day camp. The previous one they were at went smoothly, but they wanted to try something new, so we did. I know there are aspects of this new camp that might not jive entirely with his personality, so I worried all this morning getting him on the bus. In fact, once he left I freaked a little. “Did I pack his bathing suit? Did he have his water bottle? Will he lose his glasses?”

Letting go is hard. I find that in all aspects of my life, especially with my writing. Once a book is finished, edited, proofread, I have to push and convince myself to “let it go.” Release it to the world, for good or bad. But, it’s so hard. I know so many people who are perfectionists and it’s the reason they don’t publish. They can’t give themselves the permission to not be perfect.

I just “let go” my horror anthology RICKET ROW. It’s a collection of tales I compiled for the past twenty years. Many of these stories got very close to getting into magazines so I thought people would enjoy them. For some reason, this anthology was easier to let go than some of my novels. Maybe because I had a few beta readers who enjoyed them first and I wasn’t as self-conscious because I felt a little less pressure about their time. With an anthology their investment in each tale is a whole lot less than a whole novel.

So for this post, I want to leave everyone with this thought. “Letting go is hard” but it’s a fact of life. We lose loved ones, we send our children off to great adventures, we lose our glasses, we say things we sometimes wish we didn’t say. Harping, worrying and dwelling on certain thoughts and not “letting them go” won’t help us if the thoughts are negative. Remember our loved ones and keep their memories close, but give yourself the permission to move on. Let your children fly, don’t worry about material things you lose – they can be replaced.

Hopefully this is not all easier said then done, and I’ll follow my own advice.

When Your Anthology Hits a Best Seller List: What Do you Do?

A collection of creepy horror tales...

A collection of creepy horror tales…

Hello everyone! I found myself in a bit of a quandary earlier this year. I was working on Book #3 in my Kelsey Porter series and I got stalled. To keep myself doing something creative while I figured it out, I put together a collection of all my horror tales. I figured it would be fun to have a second horror novel in my inventory and since I tend to write more creepy and disturbing than slasher fic, if people enjoyed my horror novel THE MANNEQUINS, they were sure to like this.

What’s it about? Here you go:

Terrifying things are happening to those in Ricket Row. Why do a set of grieving parents dig up a shoebox each week from their son’s grave? Who is that maniacal clown that follows a man home? Why do those teen boys chase after a ghostly girl they’ve never met before? This anthology is packed with tales both psychologically creepy and horrifying. You’ll meet a group of disabled orphans trying to survive a zombie apocalypse and a woman who is getting sicker and sicker, day by day, with no reason why. Or is there? Come enter the horrors of Ricket Row. You’ve been warned.

#13 next to Stephen King!

#13 next to Stephen King!

I soft launched it on Amazon early so that early reviews could come in, with a public launch date of July 15th. But, lo and behold, it started to sell and it quickly hit a Best Seller List. So the question was, do I still wait a full month for the reviews to come in before the public release, or ride the wave and just let the reviews come in whenever they do? If more sales hit quickly, the book would jump even higher in the rankings. So that’s what I did. I released it fully and announced it to all my social media boards and wouldn’t you know, a bunch more sales came in and it has so far jumped as high as #13 in horror anthologies on Amazon (and right next to the amazing Mr. Stephen King, I might add). So, what do you do with this? First, CELEBRATE, and then, watch the boards meticulously so you can keep grabbing screen shots if it goes higher. You want those screen shots to post your book’s progress, with the link to BUY the book, to all your social media platforms. Hit them hard in the beginning to see if you can acquire as many sales as you can. Amazon actually grabbed the book and put it out as a hot new release in the sidebar (first time for me for this) and I’m hoping that helps some sales as well.

If anyone is interested, you can get it here in US for just $2.99 http://amzn.to/1cZb1M8
UK: http://amzn.to/1GsMERK

Hard copy coming soon! Love to hear what you think of it.

Writer’s Block? It’s okay to take a Break… Really.

Half of the planted garden

Half of the planted garden

Is Writer’s Block a real thing? Yes, and no. As authors, you walk that strange little tightrope if you complain you haven’t been writing because you have writer’s block. If you do, you’ll usually get one of two responses. The “Oh, don’t worry, go read, draw or take a break and it will all come back to you in due time,” to “Seriously, that’s such a lame excuse, just write and stop being such a pansy, whiny baby.” Now, maybe other writers really don’t call us whiny babies, but we feel that way.

Tulips growing around the house

Tulips growing around the house

I guess the question is, “are you writing to pay the bills, or writing for fun?” I write for fun. Sure, I’d like to pay the bills and do this full-time but at the moment, even with seven books in market and another on the way, my editing, covers and formatting cost more money than the royalties I’ll bring in for that book in a year. I’m not complaining, it just is what it is.

But writer’s block. Is it real? I think it is. I think it’s like your back hurting or being exhausted. Sometimes I think our brains simply need a break. It’s like working out the same muscle over and over. If all you do is squats, or ab work, you’re going to burn that area out. Sometimes you just have to break up the exercises to allow other areas to get trained. So for me, when I’m struggling to work on a novel, before I stress out too much and pull my hair out (yes, I’m not immune to this as I’m at this point right now still stuck on chapter five of the Kelsey Porter series, and have been stuck for two sort of frustrating weeks), I suggest doing something else to occupy your mind. Draw something, go on a vacation, go to a museum, garden. Do something that’s interesting and makes you happy. There’s nothing worse than allowing ourselves to get stuck within our own minds and making ourselves crazed. Writing is fun, but it’s hard work. It’s REALLY hard work and anyone who thinks differently has never done it.

dahlias

dahlias

While I struggle through book #3 of my series, I put together all my horror short stories into an anthology that is being released next month. It’s called Ricket Row and is at the formatter now. Once that got sent to the formatter, since I still struggled with the book, I put together all my science fiction short stories into another anthology and now I’m editing THEM. While I’m not necessarily writing, I’m editing and still creating. I won’t lie, I wish this third story was coming easier, but at the moment, it isn’t. I pull it up, and think about it nearly every day, but it is what it is.

So instead, I try to keep myself busy. I do these editing projects above, I garden (I put out my entire veggie garden the past few days) and I planted tons of flowers and bulbs. These things make me happy. Things are growing and I feel like I’m creating.

So I leave you with this… when you struggle, take a teeny step back. You’re not giving up, you’re simply resting your brain. Do something to “find your happy.” I guarantee you that your writer’s block will end at some point. Just give yourself the permission to let it end at its own pace.

Why I Wrote a Horror Anthology

Coming Summer 2015

Coming Summer 2015

Do you ever feel like you have a thousand things going on at once? I’ve got a full-time job, a pretty demanding family and I have all these side things I love to do. I know people who devote their efforts to one book at a time. When I’m in the zone I can do that, but right now I’m sort out there doing a ton of things instead. I’ve started both Book #3 in the Kelsey Porter Series, Book #3 in the FLYING series and I edited a romantic supernatural thriller I’ve for some insane reason been sending out to agents. (who, by the way 18 out of 25 of them have not responded after 3+ months). So, while I’ve been working on committing to something, I thought about all of the horror short stories I have in my computer, just sitting there. Most I’ve sent out to magazines for consideration. Many got very nice responses, but weren’t picked up. I then said, “why don’t I compile them all together into a book?”

And that’s how RICKET ROW came to be. I took all my horror, vampire, zombie and just plain creepy short stories from 2K – 5K words in length, and the shorter flash fiction pieces that are about 1500 words max, then added the micro flash fiction of 100 words each and then for fun, threw in my 140 character horror twitter tweets. And that’s how I got the anthology together.

It’s at its second beta reader right now, then it is off to a final proofer and formatter and hopefully will be out into the world early summer. My feeling was, I wrote a horror tale called THE MANNEQUINS and it’s a creepy little book that’s getting some really nice responses. So, if folks enjoyed my horror novel, they’ll be sure to like this. Not to mention, now I’ll have another book in my inventory.

If you’d like to check out my horror tale THE MANNEQUINS and get a taste for how I write, feel free to check it out here: http://amzn.to/1DV9Z9V

And if you love the cover for Ricket Row, check out THE COVER COLLECTION. I was simply surfing through the web one day and came across this site and saw their pre-made horror covers, saw how reasonable they were and it was like an epiphany went off to get this book done. They were SUPER NICE and SUPER easy to work with. Seriously, the process with them was painless. I wrote them with three covers I liked, and the copy I wanted the cover to have and asked them for their advice. They responded with which ones they felt would work best. I chose this image and then they sent back 8 different designs with different fonts. I ended up with “design #7.” After I told them I loved it, within about 10 minutes I had the final JPEG version in my hands to use for promotion. Once the book is formatted and I know the page count and get the back blurb together, they will also work on the create space cover for me. All paid through paypal.

So, stay tuned for release news and feel free to check out my other works at my newly revamped web page at http://www.elysesalpeter.com