Quote of the Moment

"Magic comes from what is inside you. It is part of you. You can't weave together a spell you don't believe in." - Jim Butcher

Friday, December 30, 2016

Setting My Sights On 2017

Well, 2016 was a busy year, as you saw from my last post.

Time to charge headfirst into 2017! (Kind of like my toddler does to the door when we put her in a time out... but maybe with a little more focus and intent - lol.)

As I mentioned in my previous post, I won't be publishing as much in 2017. This is mainly because a lot of the stuff that came out in 2016 only needed a bit of polish before it was released to the world. ;)

But that doesn't mean I won't be writing! I'm scared my to do list might be too ambitious with a THREEnager in the house, but we'll see how it goes. I reserve the right to change my trajectory at a moment's notice. That's the great thing about indie publishing -- if real life slaps you silly, you can shift deadlines around. I'll of course keep everyone posted if plans change. The best way to keep track of my upcoming publications, as always, is my newsletter (there's a form to sign up to the left).

Anyway, first I'll list my intended publications, and then I'll list my writing goals for the year! Here we go!

2017 Publications

❦ January 2017 - Mind Behind the Mind (Trinity Torn, 1) - I'll be releasing it to several retailers other than Amazon.

❦ January 2017 - Patreon page! I intend to offer flash stories and poems. If you become a supporter you can even feed me story prompts!

❦ March/April 2017 - Edge of Sorrow (Fortunes of Fate, 6) - Remember Jasp from Reversed? Yeah, that rotten mage Darney asked for help. Well, it's time to get into Jasp's head! This will immediately be available at several retailers, and not just Amazon.

❦ August/September 2017 - Hell On Wheels (Devil Made Me, 2) - So, last time we dealt with Moira's first experiences in Hell. I wonder how things with her and Jared are going... Can't be good, right? Not with her stubborn streak. You'll find out in this sequel to Hell Hath No Fury!

❦ November/December 2017 - GSD (Getting Stuff Done) vs. Everything - This is humorous non-fiction, but if you like any of my humorous fantasy, you may like these essays. I'm hoping to have this published by the end of the year, but it's a side project, and it will be the first thing removed from my to do list if I get behind on my fiction. I'll remain optimistic for now, though, that it'll get completed.

2017 Writing Goals

❦ Complete the first draft of Thorns Entwine the Blade (Trinity Torn, 2).

❦ Find beta readers for Thorns Entwine the Blade.

❦ First draft and revisions of Edge of Sorrow (Fortunes of Fate, 6). And publish it!

❦ First draft and revisions of Hell On Wheels (Devil Made Me, 2). And publish it!

❦ Revisions of Dead As Dreams (Shepherd of Dreams, 1). And get it ready for publication for January/February 2018! This is what I decided to work on instead of attempting revisions of Thorns Entwine the Blade this year. My heart is telling me it needs to be released to the world. Though, if I get enough people demanding the next Trinity Torn novel, I'll be willing to switch my focus back to Thorns.

❦ Start the Patreon page!

❦ Start offering clean and simple ebook formatting services via Haunted Unicorn Publishing. Also consider offering developmental edits, depending on the toddler.

❦ Finish first draft and revisions of GSD vs. Everything. And publish it!

❦ Continue writing 3 blog posts per month and sending out a newsletter every month at most and every other month at the least.

❦ Read more. Always need to read more. I just restarted the Dresden Files series. So many books, so little time.

Well, those are all the main things at least! Personal goals this year mostly focus on my mind and body health. Writing is not a very active career - lol.

What are your plans for 2017? Resolutions or goals? Are they quantifiable or more general? Good luck with whatever you decide to aim for! And if you have any writing goals, remember you can always join us at Writing Quest to share them and be cheered on.

OK, 2017 -- here I come!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Publication Year In Review 2016 & Mind Behind the Mind Countdown Deal

Wow, it's been a crazy year! Both my body and mind are feeling it, and I am overdue for a short break to recharge my creative batteries (not that I don't have a list of ideas, stories, and novels that need to be worked on, but my brain needs to reorganize itself after this year's long journey).

So, while the 2016 publication list below is long, I will be pulling back in 2017 on how many stories/novels/books I publish. I wanted to get my backlog of stories polished and out to the world in 2016, and I've pretty much done that. In 2017 I'll plow ahead with new material or continue tales I've started and am long overdue to get back to. But all of that is for a future post (in about two weeks). ;)

What titles by Alexa Grave made it out into the world in 2016?

Love Fades (Fortunes of Fate, 2) - urban fantasy short story (E-book at all major online retailers)

Hell Hath No Fury (Devil Made Me, 1) - humorous romantic fantasy novelette (E-book at all major online retailers)

Bound - urban fantasy short story (E-book at all major online retailers)

Blood & Booze: Two Urban Fantasy Stories - urban fantasy short stories (E-book at all major online retailers)

Reversed (Fortunes of Fate, 3) - epic fantasy short story (E-book at all major online retailers)

S.O.L. Air (Fractured Fairies, 2) - humorous fantasy short stories (E-book at all major online retailers)

Sunset Street - YA urban fantasy short story (E-book at all major online retailers)

Void of Intuition (Fortunes of Fate, 4) - urban fantasy short story (E-book at all major online retailers)

Beguiling Moon (Fortunes of Fate, 5) - epic fantasy short story (E-book on Amazon, but will be available at all major online retailers by the end of this month)

❦ "Monster in the Room" (Fractured Fairies) in the anthology Monster Maelstrom: A Flash Fiction Halloween Anthology - humorous fantasy flash story (E-book at all major online retailers)

Mind Behind the Mind (Trinity Torn, 1) - epic romantic fantasy novel (E-book on Amazon, but will be available by the end of January 2017 at all major online retailers; Trade Paperback on Amazon, Createspace, Barnes & Noble, and hopefully other online retailers soon)

A Very Grinka Christmas (Fractured Fairies, 3) - humorous fantasy novelette (E-book at all major online retailers)

Dancing in the Wind, Fractured Fairies: Immortal Woes & Ode to Buses and Libraries (Fractured Fairies, 1), Dreams in Shadow (Fortunes of Fate, 1), and Tales of Chyraine: Two Short Stories were originally published as E-books on Amazon before 2016, but in 2016 they were released to all major online retailers.

A lot of titles, no? Just typing up the list exhausted me!

I still have a lot to think about as far as plans for 2017 go. I thought I'd originally hammered the plan down, but lately I've been rethinking things. Certain tales are tugging at me to be finished (like a novel that's halfway through it's first major revision!). Hopefully I'll have it mostly figured out for my next post.

Until then, I also wanted to mention a Kindle Countdown deal for Mind Behind the Mind (Trinity Torn, 1). Starting tomorrow, December 16, 2016, my novel will be $1.99 for 3 days and then $2.99 for 3 days after that! You can find this deal in the US store only. But for the entire 6 days, 16-21, those of you in the UK with be able to get it for £1.99.

If you've been waiting to grab a copy, now is the time to do it! The links to the US and UK stores are below. Enjoy!

Mind Behind the Mind (Trinity Torn, 1) - US

Mind Behind the Mind (Trinity Torn, 1) - UK

Thursday, December 08, 2016

1001 Reasons Not to Clean - #11 through #15

Welcome to 1001 Reasons Not to Clean! The main goal of this series is to see if I can actually reach 1001 reasons, 5 reasons at a time (the final post, if I get there, will be 6 reasons). I'm sure I can. It's not just my crazy brain being unrealistic, right? Links to previous posts are below. And feel free to share your excuses, and they might get added to my list (with credit, of course)!

#1 through #5 ~ #6 through #10

11. Because you're throwing a Halloween party and right after you spend hours upon hours cleaning the house so your friends don't think you're a slob, you just have to clean it again after they leave.

12. The aforementioned friends at the Halloween party don't notice or care when you clean anyway. They just want food, booze, and conversation (and on occasion Drunken Mario Party -- though as we're getting older, this is happening less and less, unfortunately).

13. NaNoWriMo. NaNoWriMo trumps everything. (OK, OK, not everything. Don't want my toddler to starve or sit in her filth.)

14. Because you're throwing a birthday party for your toddler (and you know unlike your friends, your mother will criticize everything if it's not clean), and the toddler doesn't care one jot that you cleaned. She never does. And she shows it by the shredded pile of wrapping paper after she opens her presents like a maniac.

15. After all that party prep (and dealing with your overly critical mother), you want to nap with the toddler before she even asks you this time. In fact, you make her go down for a nap early just because you need to avoid more cleaning. Now.

Thursday, December 01, 2016

NaNo Results 2016

November is over! Man, where did the year go, let alone the month?

Anyway, I know you might have been watching my initial NaNo post to check in on my word count, so if you have, you know my total.

For those who didn't though, here it is...

18149

Not the 25,000 I was aiming for, but pretty darn good for throwing a birthday party for my toddler, Thanksgiving, holiday online shopping, left shoulder in pain, and carpal tunnel developing in my left hand (I've had it in my right hand for over a decade). Of course there's also all the daily toddler demands and the grade schooler needs (homework? why should I help you with homework?).

Nope, I didn't hit the Holy Grail of 50,000. Maybe once the kids are in college if my hands haven't fallen off by then. But this year was my second best year (last year was my best with 20.2k).

I exceeded my first NaNo by over 4k. And since I was rewriting the same novel from that first NaNo, you'd think that would mean I'm further into the story of Thorns Entwine the Blade. Nope! Lol. That first NaNo was so bare bones, that I've had to add in a lot. I'm a tad over halfway through that original 14k. Yes, that means I've more than doubled the original (almost tripled). I'm glad to see this. It means I shouldn't need quite as many revision passes as I did in the past, since my first revision would be to bulk things up a bit.

But the best thing about writing this month? The ideas! All the little mind worms were making themselves known. And not new shiny ideas distracting me from Thorns, but thoughts about the story arc and threads of Thorns itself. It's all coming together, which is truly awesome. I hope all of you enjoy reading the continuing story of Tessa and Bastian as much as I'm enjoying writing it.

Ah, but now it's time for a break from Thorns. For this month, at least. I'll be back at it in January. I have the next Fortunes of Fate story to draft this month! And Mind Behind the Mind will have a Kindle Countdown Deal mid-month for the holidays. Other than that, this writer needs a small break (and making my plans for next year and fun graphs and what not in Excel is included in the break - I love planning - heh).