I have not reached out through this platform in a long time, but the publication of Mission 51 is imminent, and I wanted to mention a few things.
First of all, my heartfelt gratitude goes to everyone who purchased a pre-order, especially those who did so during the Inkshares/Nerdist Sci-Fi Contest of 2017. Those pre-orders kept Mission 51 in the top 3 of all contestants and garnered a full publishing contract. Since that time, Mission 51 has been in production, progressively improving the story. It is now fully polished and ready for publication.
The publication date is February 15, 2022.
I am signing the pre-ordered books as we speak.
For those who pre-ordered here on Inkshares, like everyone did during the contest, it’s time to update your address. If you moved since that contest in the summer of 2017, you need to update your address with Inkshares so the book will find its way to you.
If you have not yet placed an order but wish to do so now, it remains available for purchase here on Inkshaers, and is also available on Amazon, B&N, Target…
Thanks again, everyone, for your support and your patience, and I do so hope you enjoy Mission 51!
Good day! Here we are—less than three weeks from Bane of All Things’ release on Dec. 7.
It’s been a heck of a ride to get here. The pandemic delayed BoAT’s publication date by about eight months, while my ongoing contest with cancer has added fresh twists since August.
Despite all these speed bumps, it’s onward and upward!
None of it would have been possible without your patience and support. Thank you again for going on this adventure with me.
Before Dec. 7, I will receive a box of books from my publisher, Inkshares. It will be my first time seeing the final product in its physical form. My wife, Natalie, is intent on filming this “unboxing” so that I can share it on social media. So, stay tuned for that.
Save the date! Virtual launch event on Dec. 7
I had hoped to have a live launch event at a local bookstore or a pub. But given the continued concerns with the pandemic (and my own health), I will be foregoing that. Instead, I will host an hour-long virtual event on YouTube, at 7 p.m. EST on Dec. 7.
This event will feature me reading from BoAT, drawing for some prizes, and taking comments and questions from attendees. Details will soon follow.
If you are reading this, odds are you already pre-ordered BoAT many moons ago and will have a copy or copies soon coming your way. But just so you know, my publisher is currently running a Book Giveaway on Goodreads.com with AmazonKindle.
This Giveaway runs until Nov. 29 and is open only to U.S. residents. I will, however, be doing other giveaways for my Canadian (and overseas) supporters (also as part of the Virtual Launch Event on Dec. 7). Please stand by for more details.
Making sure you receive your print copies
Again, if you did pre-order print copies of BoAT, it was many moons ago. If you have had any change of address in the past couple of years, please log into your Inkshares account to verify the mailing address you provided with your original pre-order is still current. This may require a password reset.
If you have any issues with account access or a password reset, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. And if you aren’t sure what email address you have associated with your Inkshares account, let me know and I can quickly look it up for you.
Just yesterday, I had the first of my tri-weekly immunotherapy treatments, which are intended to bolster my body’s ability to target and destroy cancer cells on its own. This comes after my radiation therapy three weeks ago and follows the surgery for tumor removal that took place at the beginning of October.
Other than experiencing the same kind of fever response you may get following a flu or COVID shot, I am so far handling the immunotherapy meds well. My recovery overall continues to move along.
That’s all for now. Stay safe and keep reading!
Greetings friends and supporters. We’re certainly due for an update on the state of Tantalus Depths, and I am thrilled to say this update is a really good one.
About a week ago, I received my first round of copyedit notes for Tantalus Depths. They were wonderfully thorough and picked up a ton of minor punctuation and grammar errors that managed to elude my notice through more than a dozen full readthroughs. They were easily fixed, and the book feels much cleaner for it.
You’ll remember that the development editing process took almost two years to complete, due to extensive rewrites and passing through multiple draft stages. Copyedits, I am happy to say, are much simpler and more straightforward, and mostly just involve clicking "accept" on every grammar change my copyeditor suggested. I made sure to read each sentence in context to ensure that none of the suggestions accidentally changed the meaning of the sentence, and I caught a couple that would have done so, but even with that close attention to detail, I am proud to say that it still only took me a few hours to make every single change expected of me for this stage of the process. While it took me months to get through a round of development edits, I was able to finish all my copyedit notes and send them back to my publisher in less than a week.
This very well may be the first time in our five-year development process where we’ve actually been ahead of schedule, and we are rapidly nearing the end. My copyeditor will go over the changes I’ve made, and barring one or two more potential correspondences to correct a few outstanding issues, we will soon be done with the copyediting process and be ready to move on to the proofreader. After that, Tantalus Depths will at long last be completely finalized and ready for its release.
It’s been a long road to get here, friends, but we are rapidly gaining momentum in the last stretch before the finish line. Expect some very exciting announcements in the next few months, including a cover reveal and our long-awaited official release date.
I never thought it would take this long to get this book into your hands, and I do hope future projects will move more smoothly now that I know what to expect. But I can definitely say with confidence that the book is ten times better now than it was before this process began, and I could not be more excited to see what happens when my world finally enters yours.
Stay tuned, my friends, and watch the skies.
The Void is calling...
1976... The maple tree where we boys processed things.
It’s rewarding and humbling to see reviews trickling in.
One of the things I constantly asked myself while writing this story was, "Why do this?" I still can’t answer that question for myself. I do hold to the idea that maybe it’s for Mom and Pop, Garnna, Shelam, Carrie, Danny, Joe, and Lamech? Maybe it’s for the Cooper’s and the other characters in my life? I’m not sure. Those of you that have read it know that it’s not a happy story or one of any sort of groundbreaking knowledge. It’s not a self help book, and it doesn’t answer any questions.
As they say, "I can’t call it - I’m too close to the forest to see the trees."
I feel I’ve reached some finish line but I am unable to say I’m happy about it. I am relieved that the heavy lifting is done; I can say, "I’ve finished this work." But, there’s this little torment within me that keeps pushing, "Get it out there - keep casting the line - throw it as far away from you as you can - ship it - leave it in a crack - give it away - drop it by air - squirrel it where someone will find it!"
I’ve been told to, "Share the burden." So, If you are able, if you care to, if you found something in my story that I can’t see, please go to the following links and share your thoughts.
It’s been a while since I’ve updated on Inkshares! BUT... I have news!
For all of you who supported me during this first Nerdist Contest, I’ve had a busy writing run! I did a massive 5E Campaign called The Red Opera: Last Days of the Warlock, tons of Geek & Sundry and Nerdist articles, and working on the next books...
Today I bring different news:
My Sequel to THIS book: The Seventh Age: Dystopia is officially live and published!
For those who loved the first book, you can grab a copy RIGHT HERE!
And... if you would be so kind as to leave a review when you are done!
Don’t forget you can find me on the interwebs @crankybolt on Twitter and everywhere else.
THE END IS NIGH!!
Well, we’ve got an ISBN and a Library of Congress Control Number.
Here is the cover. It needs a bit of important copy to plug into that white void on the back, a final page count to adjust the spine, and it’ll be done.
I struggled with the cover art. I initially thought I wanted something pretty, and harassed good friends with my bad ideas. As any sensible person would expect, the results of that direction didn’t translate the content. Also, my ideas of fanciful colors and dynamic fonts didn’t elicit any questions or emotional responses from the people surveyed. Another discovery showed those ideas were lost in the field of contemporary covers.
In a flock of swans, it’s the mangled farm goose that captures your attention.
Out of frustration, I smashed the front of this in a few seconds and it stuck. It’s the frustration that speaks. The emotion. Those of you that don’t know my story probably understand what’s depicted here on a visceral level. Way down under the level of consciousness - where letters have no meaning and language is unrecognizable - pictures speak.
All over the world, primitive cultures without a written language scratched and pecked momentous events into stone. Many of those friezes depict times of loss and death; these scrawls often have a horizontal line separating stick figures above and below while some exhibit rows of humanoid figures - both upright upright and inverted. That’s how we described burial or the debarkation of the living to the world of the dead. That’s how we recorded our pain.
Also, I think this cover works for reasons you’ll understand when reading my story.
Anyway, there’s your dose of nerd for the day.
The proof read will be completed and sent to Inkshares on Wednesday the 26th of May. From there, they will merge any repairs into the final pour. After that, it’ll be a few more weeks until the E-Readers are sent to you. Paperbacks follow shortly after that.
Thanks for your support,
Wow. It’s been a long journey, and I’m happy to say, it was just the beginning. Even though I’m not going to be continuing with Inkshares, I have found an editor who is working with me to get my book published very very soon...
Stay tuned on my instagram @themidnightwarriors for more special updates, and I will honored to tell you soon when you can order the book directly from me.
Greetings, longsuffering friends. I have some news! It’s not THE news, but it is A news. Actually, it’s TWO news. But it’s definitely GOOD news!
The first news: my friend and fellow brilliant authorial mastermind, Kaytalin Platt, was gracious enough to interview me on her website about my most recent short story, Reliquary, which debuted in last year’s Writing Bloc anthology, Passageways. We get deep into my creative process and worldbuilding approach, not just for Reliquary, but for the entire Calling Void series as a whole. It’s a great interview, and I’m very excited to share it with all of you. Check it out here, and while you’re there, check out some of her other interviews from authors in the Passageways anthology, including her own!
And now, the second news, which I think will be even more relevant to your interests.
I can FINALLY proudly announce that Tantalus Depths is officially out of the development editing stage of production.
Those of you who have been following my updates for a long time might be having a “Wait, didn’t we already do that?” moment right now, and you’d be right. We officially finished development edits more than two years ago and were cleared to move on to the copy editing stage. BUT, what we did not expect or plan on at the time was that Adam Gomolin, the CEO of my publishing company, would take direct personal interest in my book and want to go through an additional round of development edits one-on-one with me. While it was definitely a bit frustrating to jump right back into development edits right after I thought we were done, that frustration was hugely outweighed by the opportunities that additional round of edits provided. Adam and I worked tirelessly together to transform Tantalus Depths into an absolutely brilliant book that I’ve never been prouder of, and even though the work was exhausting and the wait has been long, I think it will absolutely have been worth it.
For those of you who are not familiar with the publishing industry’s inner workings, a “development edit” is a round of edits that focuses on story-related things like plot development, character consistency, tone, pacing, and so on. Basically, the meat of a story. Development edits tend to involve significant rewrites; in my case, I’ve rewritten several chapters, added a few new ones, and reworked dialogue and narration to make the story sleeker, deeper, with a stronger core identity. The story and the characters are still absolutely true to my original vision, and the book overall is still the story I always wanted to tell. In fact, even though I’ve rewritten probably 80% of the words in the story at this point, I’m really just telling the exact same story I always have with much better words.
And so, after approximately 8 different drafts, I have finally gotten Tantalus Depths to a point that both Adam and I agree is ready to move on to the next step. The story is locked in now, and will change very little from now to publication day, but there are still a few steps to go in the process. The next big step will be the copy editing stage, which is another full round of edits that will, thankfully, take much less time. Copy editing focuses on simpler, more mechanical aspects of writing, such as grammar and word usage. This stage will not involve significant rewrites and should not require more than one or two drafts to resolve. I’m not going to throw out any time estimations, because I’m very, very bad at predicting things like that well, but where a draft of development editing could take me months, a draft of copy editing should take days.
Before we slide into copy edits, however, I have one special bonus surprise! Adam is hooking me up with an actual, honest-to God physicist to do a special “scientific accuracy pass” on the book. Tantalus Depths has always been designed with scientific accuracy in mind, but for all the hours of research I’ve put into it, I’m still just a layperson with a Bachelors’s in education. This special bonus round of edits will give us the chance to improve the accuracy of the science presented in this science-fiction book, and I couldn’t be more stoked about it.
So yeah, really big stuff is happening with Tantalus Depths! I wish I had a release date to give you all, but we aren’t quite there yet. I have been given a tenuous one, but Inkshares’ release schedule is still pretty flexible, and depending on how long the next phase of production takes, our actual release date could move forward or backwards, so I don’t want to announce anything until it’s more definite. Stay tuned, though! We are really making progress now.
April 29, 2021