Tag Archives: Jay Lake

“Story Hunger” up on Amazon, a new mini collection – and various other updates

After getting my story collection with Jay Lake, Almost All the Way Home From the Stars, up on Draft2Digital, I decided to get one more big thing off my to-do list, and finished another collection of my own stories, Story Hunger:


Here’s the blurb:

“Story Hunger” is a short collection of two stories and one flash fiction piece: a tale from the cycle of the Rose knights; a fantasy prose poem; a story of Native American magic and of Raven in an alternate Pacific Northwest.

What these stories have in common is that they all revolve around the power of words; to affect us, to move us, to change us.

In preparing Story Hunger for publication, I tried to take a shortcut, since I’ve been so pleased with the way Scrivener makes EPUB and MOBI files: I skipped the step where I make a clean copy by going through HTML and a text editor. (I’ve talked before about how I do this here.) Boy did I regret skipping that step. When I uploaded the mobi to Amazon, I kept finding centered passages, even though they looked fine in Word and Scrivener. I ended up uploading Story Hunger about four times, sigh.

If you’re interested in getting the collection, wait a few days. Even though I no longer believe KDP Select is particularly effective, I enrolled this little collection and am planning to make it free soon. I will announce it here once I have the free run organized.

I still haven’t gotten back to the cover for Chameleon in a Mirror, but as soon as I have a new version, I will upload it and pick y’all’s brains for feedback. 🙂

I’ve had a request to write a post on uploading a book to Draft2Digital, and that is now in the works. Another thing to look forward to is a post on my experiences uploading Yseult to Createspace.

Me, I’m looking forward to concentrating mostly on WRITING in the coming week. I’ve gotten a lot of stuff off my business to-do list, but I’ve done next to no writing. Time to get back to the reason I’m in this business to start with!

The Canadian Who Won’t be Returning From the Stars

Ooof. I finally got the first collection of SF stories I’ve written with Jay Lake up to Draft2Digital tonight, Almost All the Way Home From the Stars. Here’s the blurb:

“Almost All the Way Home From the Stars” contains seven science fiction short stories by award winning writers Jay Lake and Ruth Nestvold. The settings range from distant worlds, to the near future, to an alternate US where slavery was never abolished. Here a sampling:

“Rivers of Eden”: In a world transformed by a virus affecting faith, one lone scientist wants to set loose a cure for fanaticism.

“The Big Ice”: On Hutchinson’s World, Vega and Mox are trying to unravel the mystery of the Big Ice — until the family responsibilities Vega has been trying to escape come back to haunt her.

“The Canadian Who Came Almost All the Way Home From the Stars”: An NSA agent is assigned to look after a Canadian scientist whose husband has left Earth to visit the stars — and the strange dimple in the lake that she is watching, while waiting for his return.

Five of the stories have been previously published elsewhere, in various online and print markets, including Gardner Dozois’ Year’s Best Science Fiction. Two stories are new with this collection.

No links as yet, since it takes a while for books to go up on the various markets, but I will pass them along when I have them. I’m going straight D2D this time, since I’m passing all the profits on to Jay (what little there will be, given how notoriously hard short story collections are to sell). But it will make it a lot easier for me to keep track of profits for this book if everything is in one place. AND D2D will also do all the Createspace work for me. I wasn’t completely happy with the PDF that will be the basis for the print copy of the book, but doing all the Createspace formatting on my own for Yseult was a huge amount of work, and I don’t feel like tackling that again this week. I want this done and out of here. 🙂

And Jay needs to concentrate on his bucket list.

Speaking of Yseult, Createspace has finally approved the files I sent for the print version, but I would rather wait until the light of day to ok them for publication. *g*

In other news, my daughter and I created an amazing cover for Chameleon in a Mirror, but it’s late here in Central Europe, and I can’t figure out how to upload the image from the Facebook page, where I first asked for feedback. When I have a new version, I’ll upload it here!

Haven’t gotten very far in the New Words department in the last few days. I’m hoping that with a couple of these bigger projects off my list (see above), I can spend more time on plain old creation again.

Progress on various books and an interview with me

The weather was finally nice again for a change yesterday, so I took the day off and spent it in the garden. Everything’s a bit late this year, since winter went on forever, but right now, the tulips are blooming like crazy.

First tulips

I don’t think I’ve been doing enough “replenishing” lately — need to spend more time in the garden, appreciate all the work I’ve put into it over the years.

On the writing work front, I’m moving forward with the science fiction collection with Jay Lake and sent him a copy of the ebook today. Here’s the latest version of the cover, btw:

What do you guys think, any better?

My hubby has gone through the PDF of Yseult for Createspace, but I haven’t had a chance to address his comments yet. I will be very glad to get this stuff out of the house and spend some more time on writing again!

Finally, Lorna Suzuki did a nice interview with me on her blog. Check it out if you’re so inclined!

Wishing everyone a great week with lots of words and no frustration. 🙂

A new story collection and upcoming freebies

Most of my time lately has been spent working on the new collection of stories I wrote with Jay Lake. A few years back, we collaborated on a number of stories together, both science fiction and fantasy. When I started switching from traditional publishing to ebooks, I told Jay I could put together some collections of our fiction. But since I always have more projects than time, I kept putting it off. Then recently I learned that Jay’s battle with cancer has taken a turn for the worse, and I figured I better finally get on it. (As opposed to my writing buddy, Jay, I don’t go into personal stuff a lot on this blog, but for the record, I had a crying fit before I realized I had to shift priorities a bit.)

The first book of our collaborations that I’m doing is science fiction and includes five previously published stories (two of which were reprinted in Year’s Best anthologies), as well as two stories new to this collection. I’m not done with formatting it yet, and I still need to write a blurb (always particularly hard with collections, gah). But here’s the second version of the cover:

Please let me know what you think!

The other big project that I’ve been working on this week is FINALLY PUTTING TOGETHER A PRINT VERSION OF YSEULT! I splurged and bought a license from Book Design Templates. But if you click on the link, don’t believe that marketing line about your book “looking this good in just minutes.” Having some base styles already designed, and by a pro, is definitely a time-saver, but I’ve spent most of the day today importing Yseult into the template, defining styles, looking for import mistakes (e.g. I lost all of my italics and have to find them again in another window in Word), etc. — and I’m still not done. But since that whole procedure is definitely worth a blog post of its own, I won’t bother you with any more detail now.

I also spent a fair amount of time organizing some freebies for the coming week and notifying sites that will still carry announcements. I’m slowly moving my books out of KDP Select. Of the twelve ebooks I have out now, five are still in Select (one by mistake). Of those that are still in, several will be free next week. I did some overlapping in an attempt to get more of my books on my other books “alsobots” — something I’m not having much luck with. I suspect that’s because I don’t write exclusively in one narrowly defined genre. The readers who enjoy Yseult and Shadow of Stone may well have absolutely no interest in Looking Through Lace, and vice versa. So be it. One of the things I love about being an indie author is that I can write whatever I want, without someone else pressuring me to watch out for my BRAND. Ok, so it means I’m going to continue to sell modestly until I get enough out there in ALL the genres I like to write — or a miracle occurs. But the thing is, I really enjoy the freedom. 🙂

Anyway, here are the upcoming freebies:

Dragon Time and Other Stories – April 29-30

Misty and the Magic Pumpkin Knife – April 30 – May 4

Beyond the Waters of the World – May 3-4

The Future, Imperfect – May 4-5

Enjoy!