Quarterly sales

Standard

Hello all!

Recently got my sales report for this quarter. I’ve been keeping track of my most popular books, and it looks like All the King’s Men has come out on top!

Book cover

I think I’ve mentioned before, but this novel was originally published with Less Than Three Press and was republished with JMS Books in 2019.

I do wonder sometimes what makes a book popular, and what makes it less popular. I know one aspect is the pairing. All the King’s Men is a M/M pairing, and that type of pairing tends to sell more. I think genre probably also has something to do with it. All the King’s Men is a sci-fi/cyberpunk novel as well as a romance novel. I really enjoy writing sci-fi and fantasy, but I know contemporary genres also tend to sell more. Not that this fact will stop me from writing sci-fi and fantasy novels.

I wonder what about All the King’s Men has made it the most popular. It might be the cover, which is one of my favourites of all of them. It might also be the blurb is exciting, or maybe people have read some goodread reviews about it. Ultimately, I’m not really sure; all I can really say is why I liked writing it.

All the King’s Men is a cyberpunk novel heavily influenced by my love of the movie The Matrix. The Cerebrum in my novel functions a little differently than the matrix of the movie, but some of the aesthetics are similar, particularly some of the outfits that the characters wear. The titular King of the novel is a little bit similar to Morpheus as well.

I started writing this novel mostly because I was particularly interested in exploring the theme of identity when it comes to cyberspace. If any of you have read the novel, you know (SPOILER) that the agents of the Cerebrum are not programs, but actual humans who have been brainwashed into thinking they’re all the same, from appearance to purpose. (END SPOILER) There is also the fact that appearance varies in the Cerebrum, and that various governments have attempted to limit the ways in which people can appear in cyberspace, but no one really listens to the law, and it’s not really enforced. So can one really know who’s who in the Cerebrum?

I love chatting with people about themes in books, mostly because I have two degrees in English literature. I was honestly wondering if readers would be interested in hearing some of the themes that I purposefully put in my novels and novellas, or would that be going against Death of the Author too much? To be clear, I wouldn’t be adding post-canon material at all in a blog post.

On the other hand, if anyone is interested in more material from any of my novels, writing a short story to accompany the novel is always a possibility. However, I generally don’t do these types of things unless there’s genuine interest in it.

Anyway, let me know what you think, and as always, happy reading and writing!

Summer 2020

Standard

Hello everyone,

I’m just tuning in to let you all know of the progress happening with my WIPs.

Unfortunately, a lot of stuff is being put on hold because I’ve been focused on the Black Lives Matters movement. I think this issue is of great importance. I’m so so worried about my Black siblings who have been put in the line of fire simply for asking people not to kill them. It’s devastating to me that their lives are not held as precious as any other. I will not be taking comments against this movement on my page. If you don’t agree, the unfollow button is right there.

I’ve submitted Far Patrol and am awaiting a response. I’m really excited to hear back. As I said before, a LBGTQ+ beta reader helped me with this work and does amazing work in the community. That is Siobhan Crosslin (@siobhancrosslin on Twitter) who made sure that all my plotholes were covered before submitting.

I have finished and gotten feedback on Weekend Girl and am just giving it a little time before revising my draft. I’m really excited to also submit this work for publication. It will be my first novel-length story with a genderfluid protagonist.

I will be starting to write on both the sequel for Far Patrol and the sequel for Weekend Girl in the coming months. I hope to be able to update you all with further progress on these projects.

Thanks for tuning in!

Spring 2020

Standard

Hello all,

I’m just updating everyone on the status of some of my works in progress.

First, Weekend Girl is currently 8 chapters finished and needs two more to be complete. I am really excited about this one because it’s my first full length novel about a genderfluid character. Their name is Ash, and they are a student in Vancouver, Canada. They are 20 years old and just wrapping up their third year at UBC when they meet fellow student Nolan on the bus. It’s fun and light-hearted, and my first try at a contemporary novel. I will be getting it beta’d soon, so I’m very excited about that!

Second, I’m still awaiting feedback on my novel Far Patrol, which is about dragons and politics. Not certain where this one will end up, as it’s not really about romance at all. My dragon character Ignius is ace/aro and hsyr rider Kathely is agender pansexual. It’s a more introspective novel, and is very much fantasy.

Lastly, still on the backburner is my novella about a post-apocalyptic society that lives underground. I hope that this one will be next up on my list to finish after Weekend Girl. My main character is bi, and his love interest is a trans gay man.

Just before I go, I’m going to share some news not related to my writing. I have received and accepted a PhD offer from McMaster University in Ontario, Canada. I will be joining the English and Cultural Studies department there. I’m really excited about this offer and hope to continue writing while I study and teach!

See everyone later!

Hakusan Angel Rerelease

Standard

Hello everyone!

I’m happy to be able to announce that my third re-release with JMS Books is coming out soon! Hakusan Angel will be released on December 28, 2019.

Here is the marvelous new cover for Hakusan Angel.

hakusanangel

Here’s a quick blurb for the book:

Kaede is a Source, capable of powering a machine with her own energy, but she has been hiding the full extent of her abilities. Given the tenuous relations between her country and their rivals, she fears discovery of her full power would provoke the war that hangs over them. But others disagree, and firmly believe that power like Kaede’s is far too valuable to be hidden away…

Hakusan Angel is a f/f lesbian romance, 26 000 words

PREORDER LINK

New Titles Up

Standard

Hello everyone!

First of all, I’d like to thank you for being patient while I reformatted some of my previous work. Secondly, I would like to bring you two of my previously published works as self-published works.

The first is Love Rampage!

Love Rampage - cover2-01

Love Rampage is a trans romance about love and acceptance. 

Maira is a trans woman with feelings for a girl named Carol, who she believes will never love her. Being shy and awkward are the least of Maira’s problems. Maira thinks that nothing will ever change until she is kidnapped by a unicorn who claims that Maira must profess her love to Carol. Maira is skeptical, but can love win in the end?

Love Rampage is a short story of about 11k words and is trans f/f urban fantasy story. 

For only $0.99 you could own it today!

Originally published by Less Than Three Press for the Geek Out Collection, Love Rampage is being republished as a self-publication HERE.

Next up is a free read!

Charmed by Chance

Charmed by Chance is another romance involving a fairly hopeless mechanical design student named Merrit who sometimes has problems when dating mech mages. However, one mech mage comes along who doesn’t seem to mind Merrit’s quirks. In fact, Verity, the genderqueer shop owner who fixed up Merrit’s mechanical hand, seems to like it. But what happens when terrible circumstances befall Merrit? Can he and Verity overcome everything and be happy?

This short story is absolutely FREE to download.

Charmed by Chance is another trans romance with a m/nb pairing. 8k words. 

Download HERE

Thanks everybody for tuning in! 

Hiatus over?

Standard

Hello all!

It’s good to be back!

I’m sorry for being gone for so long. I was mostly working on my education, so I hope you will forgive me. I am graduating from UNBC with an MA in English on May 31st!

Anyway, that’s exciting for me. But what’s exciting for you guys is that I am back to work on creative writing stuff! I am currently finishing up dev edits on Yaliana that I was supposed to finish up over a year ago. Now that it’s back on track, I will probably be able to give you an update on publication dates soon!

Not only that, check this out!

Read and Write with Pride Turns 5

I’m doing a reading event in Edmonton again! It’s the annual Read and Write with Pride happening with some great LGBTQ writers in attendence. I’m excited about that, but I still don’t know what I’m going to be reading! I’ll let everyone know closer to the date.

There are so many things I’m working on right now, but I will have time this summer to work on creative writing, and hopefully taking a gap year between MA and PhD will give me lots of time to write.

I’ll tell you more about projects as they develop!

For now, glad to see you all!

Pride Prince George

Standard

Hello everyone!

Just this weekend, I was able to attend Prince George Pride! I had an author booth at the festival, which I thought was fun. I saw a lot of people I know in the community, and it was great to see everyone out in celebration and resistance.

I think my time at the Pride festival was moderately successful. I sold a few books of mine, including a copy of Geek Out, which is a collection of trans romances. I’m going to try and get more involved in my own community, which will be fun. Up until recently, I have only ever participated as a queer author in online communities. I think Prince George needs to know that our city has queer writers and that we are writing queer lit.

I had the interesting experience of meeting lots of queer youth who had no idea that there were queer romances out there. They also had no idea that their voices could be heard, and that their own stories could be put out there in the world, too.

So, to those of you in Prince George, please feel free to chat with me. I’d love to connect with more queer writers in the community. I think at some point I will establish a queer writing club as well, to connect writers together.

I’ve done a lot of activism, but I think it’s time to join my online presence with my actual physical presence on the ground. After all, I’ve been dividing my time and presence between two places, and now it will be one. 

So welcome new followers! I will try and keep in touch with everyone! And if I can establish a queer creators community, that would also be great!

Happy Pride!

LGBT WIP

Standard

Hey everyone, long time no see!

I’m just writing in to tell you about the #LGBTWIP tag going on via Twitter this month. A lot of LGBTQ authors are responding to this tweet to talk about their latest WIP. I guess I’m band-wagoning onto the idea, because here I am.

So one of my WIP is about agender plant-aliens who are meeting humans in order to do a trade deal. The story goes that they are trying to make a trade, with a secondary goal of making an alliance, but then a radical xenophobic group gets involved and tries to mess up the tentative agreement. My MC is a scientist who does a lot of her own experiments on herself. She is a biotech engineer who is working on making their species more hardy in order to survive longer, healthier lives. Because of her work, she is added to a diplomatic team that includes her “mother,” the main diplomat and negotiator. 

The premise came from a very famous Tumblr post about how aliens might see humans as the scariest ones in the universe and not the other way around. My plant-aliens are very peaceful people who worship nature and the balance of life. Meeting war-like and aggressive humans is a bit of a culture-shock for them.

Anyway, a lot of the plot is yet undecided, and there’s a lot of work to be done on it. 

If any of you are wondering about my Across Borders rewrite, I haven’t exactly worked on it in a while, mostly because of grad school. 

I’m also working on a free read on Wattpad called Text Me. Feel free to check that one out, since it’s free. Notice I’m using the word “free” a lot? Yeah, it’s free. It’s not finished yet, but I’ve been updating it fairly regularly.

Anyway, hopefully I will finish my thesis fairly soonish and I will be able to write again. 

I keep saying that, but “soon” is a relative term.

Anyway, drop into the comments if you have anything to chat about!

Ttyl

Rewriting Part 1

Standard

I’m not going to pretend to be an expert on rewriting, as this is my first project to be rewritten, but bear with me, my friends, and we’ll get through this thing together.

The first thing I had to do was reread the original novella. It didn’t take long, as it was only 26k words. It was interesting in some ways, because it was almost like reading something that someone else had written. It’s been so long, that I’d forgotten some of the details, and it was like reading it anew.

The next step for me was to decide what I wanted to keep. I made a sort of list in order to make sure I didn’t forget. It went like this:

  1. Characters. Almost all of them, obviously my two main characters, plus Mai-hua (my main character’s foster sister), her brother Jie-kang, the Emperor, Elder Breena, the Huo-long prince, etc.
  2. Premise. The two nations of the Shui-long and the Ceffyl Dwr are at war. Mai-hua wants to put an end to the war.
  3. World-building. What I had, I decided to keep. Both the Shui-long and the Ceffyl Dwr are somewhat amphibious beings that live on both land and water. There are five dragon nations.
  4. Tone/mood
  5. Some scenes from the original story.

Then, I decided what I wanted to revise. Another list. Can you tell that I like lists? I’m generally not a very organized person, so lists are good for me.

  1. Character roles: In the original story, Xin-jian didn’t know Mai-hua’s plans to make peace with the Ceffyl Dwr and only found out when she nearly died. In this story, I made them both a part of the plot, and made it so that Jie-kang’s entrance into the story is also rewritten, because in the original, he is only very briefly mentioned.
  2. Narrative arc: the whole story changes, with the exception of a few scenes that I think I will keep. Some scenes I want to keep, but am not sure how to fit them in to the new narrative arc.
  3. World-building: needs a vast amount of improvement. The original had a facade of world-building, but wouldn’t hold up under pressure or a more detailed examination.
  4. Length: this story needs much more room. It will probably span at least two novels.

There you have it. As I go on, I will definitely let you know more of what’s happening with that. Also, if I finally finish my dev edits, you will be the second to know (the first being my publishers/editors).

Thanks for tuning in!

Across Borders Take Two

Standard

THIS IS NOT AN APRIL FOOL’S DAY JOKE

Hello all,

I have yet to finish my dev edits. Such is my shame. However, I am starting yet another project, which some of you may have already read about in previous posts.

I am going to do a complete rewrite of Across Borders, which is the first novella that I ever wrote for Less Than Three Press as part of The Bestiary collection. It’s since gone out of print, and I thought it would be cool to revamp it and resub it to the same publisher. For some reason, it was a fairly popular novella, even if it didn’t get the same ratings as some of my other work. 

Here’s what it looked like on its first go around:

bestiary4across

This cover was done back in 2012. Back then (in the olden days), Less Than Three Press didn’t do separate covers for every novella, so every novella in The Bestiary volume 4 had the same cover. Some of you probably remember, even! I was fresh out of my BA, and was ready for anything. Ah, my youthful idealism. 

Anyway. That’s the first cover art I ever received, and I can tell you that I was thrilled with it. Nowadays, LT3 has all sorts of lovely cover art and talented artists. We’re spoiled, really. But as a newbie author, I was happy with it. You can even see the little kelpie symbol in the top corners. 

I still do like my first published work, the original Across Borders, which was a romance between warriors of two warring states, but it is, admittedly, a juvenile work. One thing I can improve on in the story I want to write is world-building as well as narrative story arc. I’m looking forward to it.

These are my characters Xin-jian and Tiernan. The art was done by V. Rios for the 2012 publication.

across borders

My characters from Across Borders

As you can see, the two of them are shifters, one is a Chinese dragon shifter, and the other a kelpie. As a few of you probably realize, Celtic Ireland/Wales/Scotland is pretty far away from China. I also didn’t really think of time periods/historical accuracy. I just wanted to tell the story of two people who are from vastly different cultures falling in love. I think it’s the love story that carried it, because the story-telling needed improvement.

Not to say that I wasn’t a good writer in 2012. My action scenes are pretty epic, and continue to be one of my stronger points to this day. 

The long and the short of it is that I think the story I want to tell needs to be fleshed out more. I’ve already outlined what is probably going to be two novels, and it’s turning out a lot different than the first one. But the core remains, that is, the love story between two cultures is still there.

I will keep you all updated! I’m doing the first rewrite I’ll ever do, and it should be a fun journey for me. I’ll probably release another blog post on rewrites soon!

Until then!