Back in 2017, as I was begging each and every one of you to buy my book, I was neck and neck in a Contest against Dean Fearce, author of MINE (formerly ’Murder Happens’)...and a strange thing happened:
Bromance blossomed. I decided that I liked the cut of his gib. I wanted to hang out with Dean. At the very least, I wanted to write with him.
Dean, being the fierce lone wolf he is, was diplomatically non-committal. Then I showed him the very beginnings of a story I’d been thrashing my brain against since 2010 - Ruining Boise - and an amazing thing happened: Dean said he’d work on that book with me because he liked the premise even more than he liked his independence, or me.
Enter late 2018, both Dean and I are both nose-to-the-grindstone working to bang out final versions of our respective, contest-winning books: Mine was formerly ’The Vampire and the Dragon’, now titled ’PrOOF’ - the very book you pre-ordered, and his aforementioned MINE. Inkshares decides to hold their first contest in over a year - the 2018 Inkshares Mystery & Thriller Contest. Since Ruining Boise is a crime/mystery/suspense tale, I looked at Dean (me seated in Western NY, he seated in Northern CA) and said, "Should we?" Famous last words, perhaps?
I don’t expect anyone on this email to buy a copy of Ruining Boise - even though it is technically funding. I feel I’ve already asked for far too much with PrOOF, and won’t ask for any more of your hard-earned money. If you love the concept of the book and want to pre-order one, I cannot and will not stop you, but make no mistake; this email is not asking you to buy anything. All I’m asking is that you utilize your Inkshares account to follow the book - the link is peppered throughout this email, but here it is one more time: RUINING BOISE
Dean and I love the premise of this book and feel that it’s fair to test if there’s a market for it. We don’t have very high expectations. Above all, both of us remain humbled and grateful for all the support you’ve shown us over the past year plus. We hope the looming holiday season and 2019 will be a boon and blessing to you all!
Thanks - Michael James Welch
"Today, I did a crazy thing,” I said to Joan. She’s a Dev Editor, and one of my cohorts in the Black Hats Writers Group. She got me mixed up in this Inkshares meshugas in the first place. God bless her for that.
Last year when the Inkshares Horror Contest was heating up, Michael Welch and I had a friendly rivalry going. Some even called it a bromance. (That might have been me.) Mostly, he was kicking my ass. He floated the idea of collaborating on a project. We even discussed plot ideas, characterization, and what-not in some detail.
“Hell no,” I said back then. "Maybe later when this contest is over."
When it was over, I needed to write, and so did he, and now I’m re-writing and yes, I have high hopes that book might drop in 2019. I’m talking about MINE, of course, which started out as Murder Happens. I’m still not settled on the title, but MINE works for me right now.
Today, Mike floats the idea of putting the collaboration together again because Inkshares has a new contest going. The first of this year. Might be the only one of this year. And, it’s a Mystery Contest.
“I can’t ask my supporters to fork over for another book when the one I promised isn’t done yet,” I said.
There might have been more swearing involved. Or maybe that’s a conversation that occurred in my head. Still, the excitement of the contest worked its way into my evil little brain. Next thing I know, Mike’s putting us up as a team. He even gave me first billing in the author profile. It should be him. The concept is his. But, I’m going to grab a hunk for myself. That’s how I roll. The creative tension between us will be epic. Definitely worth the price of admission, right?
Oh, wait. I need to give you a link so you can go follow the book. I’m not going to ask, beg, extort or otherwise pressure anyone to pre-order. (But, shit happens.) I’ll throw this link out there, and let you decide what to do. The URL has 666 in it. That’s righteous.
There’s some serious talent running away with this contest already, and I’m sure I’ll support those projects, but hey, just call me crazy.
Full confession: I’ve been having a very hard time with some personal things lately, so I haven’t been so terribly diligent on updating everybody. I’ll spare the details (this update is going out to something like over 600 followers of The Animal in Man!), but you should be aware of a couple things:
THE ANIMAL IN MAN FINAL COVER IMAGE!
UPDATED BOOK-SIGNING EVENT DATES
The release date of the Animal in Man was pushed back from late September to October 30th due to some printer issues. Therefore, the events I’d booked had to be pushed back as well.
The Book Cellar, Chicago - - November 1st, 7:00 - 9:00 PM (4736-38 N Lincoln Ave)
Barnes & Noble Naperville - - November 10, 2:00 - 5:00 PM (47 E Chicago Ave)
I’m hoping I can see all my dear animals out en masse.
Ooh! I should make an update! That should happen!
A lot of you already know this, but in my excitement, I neglected to make an official update about it, so here I am, finally doing that.
WE MADE IT!
Proteus is now completely funded! We reached our goal of 750 pre-orders, and the whole project has shifted into production mode. I’ve already been congratulated by Inkshares staff, and they’ve sent me some of the paperwork I’ll need to do in order to launch the book into the production process. It’s really happening!
So what happens next, in terms of Proteus? Well, as any of you who have ordered Tantalus Depths are already painfully aware, the production process takes a very long time. Also, since Tantalus Depths was my first project and people have been waiting the longest for it, it is still going to take most of my attention from now until it launches, so Proteus is something I will have to be working on in the background as I prioritize Tantalus Depths.
My plan is to get Proteus into the editing process shortly before Tantalus Depths is released. The whole intent behind launching my Proteus campaign when I did was to ensure that my second published novel came out no more than a year or two after my first, and my goal is to try and release new books on a yearly or bi-yearly schedule, consistently. Inkshares has finally given me a tentative release date of winter 2019 for Tantalus Depths. It’s much later than I thought it would be, but the delay is necessary to accommodate some new ideas that Inkshares’ CEO has in mind for it. It should be a particularly strong release next year, and Inkshares is showing a lot of confidence in it, so the delay will be worth it.
In the meantime, I’m not going to be idle. I have a surprise project I’m working on that should come out later this fall, to tide everyone over as we wait for Tantalus Depths. I also plan on building myself a proper website, which I’ll be loading with all manner of content related to the universe I’ve created, the art of writing, and the community we’ve formed. Now that the burden of campaigning is over, hopefully for good, I finally feel free to devote more of my time and energy into the parts of this process I actually enjoy: the writing, the creativity, and sharing my work to the world.
For now, I’m taking a week off, ‘cause by golly, I’ve earned it. But after that, work starts anew. We’re going to do great things together.
Supporters...you wonderful, handsome/beautiful supporters, you...
I have some complicated news regarding my Inkshares project, which I’ve decided to cancel.
I’m going to ask all who planned to pre-order to hold off for now.
Everyone who did place an order: Inkshares FAQ says you will receive a full refund either sometime in next couple weeks (I sent an email to Inkshares, I don’t know how fast these things are) or after the campaign-window runs its course on November 14.
A NY based publisher I submitted the manuscript to over a year ago reached out to me last week and offered a contract. Three days after I started asking people for pre-orders. Go figure, right? Of course that was going to happen. Of course it was.
Me and a law-student buddy reviewed it -- everything looks good and fair, we’ve added our stipulations, I’ve reached out to a number of their listed authors to vet experiences, and everyone had good things to say -- and I plan to sign.
When faced with the choice between continuing the Inkshares campaign -- which had a very small chance of success anyway -- and taking a for-sure deal RIGHT NOW, I thought it’d be silly to pass up this opportunity. But I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to being a little curious to know if we could’ve pulled it off. . . that woulda been pretty badass.
So, it’s no longer a toss up.
After one dropped agent, one dropped contract with another publisher and roughly a hundred rejections and near-offers, this godforsaken novel WILL be published.
Although we didn’t achieve our objective in the manner that we intended, the objective WAS achieved.
People who followed and ordered through Inkshares: I have your email address, and I will let you know when this thing hits the shelves. I sincerely hope you’re still interested in reading the rest. Much love to you -- ALL THE LOVE TO YOU!
I would also like to take this opportunity to give a couple signal-boosts to other Inkshares projects that I think are phenomenal and deserve a bit more attention:
Spacebreaker: A New Threat, by John Novak only has eight followers, AND HE NEEDS MORE -- his project is basically lampooning Star Wars in the same manner as Space Balls. It’s really funny stuff, and you should definitely check it out. https://www.inkshares.com/books/spacebreaker-a-new-threat
Ereshk, by Frederick Street is sitting at 36 followers and could definitely use the bump. It’s this really, really creepy cosmic-horror-noir genre blend with a lot of promise. Do check it out. https://www.inkshares.com/books/ereshk
Strays, by William Keaton is being pitched as 28 Days meets Cujo, and, friends, this is hands-down the coolest draft I stumbled across on here. Very, very well written and it had me hooked on page-one. Strays has 19 followers, and that is simply a shame. This is the kind of thing that ya’ll should be reading.
Grayson, by Michael Sobers is sitting at 28 followers and it deserves some regard -- a hard-sci-fi yarn about space-miners stuck in interplanetary trade-drama. Think equal parts Dune, The Martian and James Clavell’s The Asian Saga. https://www.inkshares.com/books/grayson
The Burden of Choice, by Mason Force. It’s well-written sci-fi about a society run by powerful sociobioneering AI. Sitting at only 8 followers, and it definitely deserves more.
There are so many more projects worth mentioning, but these in particular looked especially in need of a boost.
Also: PrOOF -- Preservation Of Occult Figures, by Micheal James Welch, which was successfully funded and is taking orders -- sounds rad, like something Charlie Stross might have on his bookshelf.
Again, many thanks to all who followed my project and pre-ordered. You’re all amazing, and if you ever need anything from me, never hesitate to shoot me an email and ask. Find me on facebook and send me a friend-request!
And please let me know if there are questions about project: BREATHLESS.
Best regards, and remember
The biggest update on this book/series that you’ll ever read.
My development email finally came (from my development editor @ Inkshares), and they like the character of the vampire, and they like the world-building. Most of all, they like the idea of a ‘Men In Black for the supernatural instead of aliens’ concept. Or, at the very least, want that concept expanded.
I’ve been anticipating this day for close to a year now. I knew it was going to bring changes, require me to kill darlings, etc etc etc. Within 30 minutes of reading the email, I already knew which direction I needed to head with this story. Within 18 hours, the development editor @ Inkshares was in agreement that my planned changes were the direction they’d hoped for.
SO. Here are the changes:
1.) The Vampire and the Dragon will be going by a different name. Originally, this is one of the things I was willing to fight about until the end, but with the changes that are being made, it no longer makes any sense. PrOOF, the agency (Preservation of Occult Figures), is moving front and center. The title will likely be PrOOF: something something. Possibly just PrOOF. Possibly the whole thing spelled out. Unsure.
2.) It’s possible that this will still be a series rather than a standalone book. Nothing is promised, but it’s in everyone’s best interest if the story and characters and concept are strong enough to warrant a series. Again, see MiB…they made…what, 4 of those films?
3.) Everything good about The Vampire and the Dragon and none of the bad is staying. Trust me when I say that doing this the way I plan to do it removes every single thing I hated about my original plot (but had painted myself into a corner and forced myself to live with) and retains almost exactly everything I liked about my plot; if not exactly, then in spirit. But more likely, exactly.
4.) Many of you did not follow the sequels I had planned – The Vampire and the Wendigo and The Vampire and the Djinn. That’s fine now, as those two books (and their plots/concepts) are going to be folded into The Vampire and the Dragon’s plot. They all dovetail rather nicely.
Soon you’ll see changes to my marketing materials – the FB page, the Inkshares pages, etc…to reflect the direction that the book/series is heading. Everything will have the name ‘PrOOF’ front and center.
I have to say that my initial dismay only lasting about 20 minutes before I was defending the very changes the dev editor was suggesting is about as good as it gets. I feel badly for my fellow authors who were not able to twist their own stories, characters and plots to meet the suggested changes that their own dev editors gave to them, and I sympathize for the positions they were in. I feel very grateful that what’s been suggested to me does not violate the spirit of the story I wanted to tell, but instead raises it from a small tale to a very, very large tale, with much higher stakes.
Thank you all for sticking with me through this – I know it’s been a minute or two since you plunked down your hard-earned money to help support my dream. I don’t take any of that for granted for even a moment. I’m still hoping for a late 2019 publishing date, but there’s a LOT of things that have to be done between now and then – including a complete re-write of the entire book. Stick with me, folks, and I promise you I’ll write the best story I’m capable of writing. And you’ll be holding the PrOOF in your own hands when I’m through.
Michael James Welch
Mechcraft has its first celebrity endorsement! Jennifer Marshall, from Stranger Things and NBC’s Timeless, made a little video for the book. Check it out here: https://youtu.be/tXe1WmFYVhg
In other news, I’ll be appearing at the upcoming San Diego Festival of Books on Saturday August 25. If you’re in the area, swing on by. Here’s the details: https://www.facebook.com/events/173139736714144/
Have a great rest of the week.
Howdy there! I apologize for it being such a long time since my last update! Quite a few changes happening!!
For one, my Inkshares campaign is ending VERY soon and it will not make its goal... No worries though, The Dare is not dead! In fact it will be getting released through another avenue. I am not sure if I can say it through here, but if you go on my Instagram or FB page, you’ll know where it’s going to be released! I am very excited for these changes and I have a renewed energy to get this book out for reading! You should receive a refund for the pre-order once the time has come for the campaign to end. If you do not see it, please contact me or Inkshares support. They said to allow 1 business day for the refund to process.
"Miacarterauthoroffiction" is my instagram account name and search Mia Carter on Facebook for that page. (Though I am more active via Instagram.) I am working on a website as well, not sure when it will be up and running so for now I will update through IG/FB and emails. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org. Let me know if you would like to still receive email updates and I will add you to the mailing list. I will not use your email for anything other than updates regarding my books, the website or any events that may arise!
I want to thank you so very much for your support and your pre-orders, it means a great deal to me. This was one path to try, it didn’t work, so trying out the next one. I am not giving up!
Have a great week!!! Much Love, Mia Carter