News Things

In the immediate, there’s a new post concerning some worldbuilding concepts for the Grimluk series over on Patreon today. Mostly it’s just a few things I thought were interesting enough to share but haven’t been used yet or are still forming. Check it out, only costs a buck to read everything.

As I mentioned in my healthcare post Monday, I started a fundraiser for medical costs and to help afford a new car. Between Nici and I, we need some heavy stuff taken care and I really need a newer car so I can have reliable transportation and not have to worry about major repairs for a few years. We are pretty desperate and anything you can afford will help. Along with the general state of the US, this is a pretty huge source of anxiety right now.

In more pleasant news, Grimluk 3 is chugging along, gaining momentum toward finishing the first draft. I’m nearing the 56,000 word mark as of last night. The final goal for release next year will be a 75,000 word minimum, like with Demon Haunted. The first draft goal is looking to be 65-70,000 as I know I’ll be able to fill out in the second draft. There’s plenty of stuff I’ll be rewriting and expanding as well as certain areas that I’ll just be flat out finishing (mostly just little transition sections and bits of dialogue that were bogging my progress down).

I’ll probably take a month off after that, aside from Patreon, take a week to bang out the Gwen short story I started after (and set after) Demon Haunted, get some Kickstarter planning for October, as well as some Orctober planning, and then start on Grimluk 4. If all goes to plan, and no major distractions happen, I’m hoping I can finish Grimluk 4’s draft by December.

Before I end this, just want to say that however bleak things are looking right now, find a loved one and hug them and remember that there’s still good in the world.

Stay weird, be kind.

Looking Back and Going Forward

The Hell year that has been 2016 is coming to its end and 2017 looms ominously in the wings. With that in mind, I thought I might give a bit of retrospection on the year and think about what’s to come in the new year.

Personally, the year started off in a harsh note. I don’t exactly make it a secret that my family life is less than stellar, even if I don’t post much about it here on the Dot Com. Not a lot of that has changed. In a lot of ways it feels like it’s much worse. My partner and I are trying to move back to Tulsa and in with her mom. It’s not going very quickly due to a host of factors. So, if you want to help, buy my books, leave reviews, and spread the word about Grimluk.

Professionally, though, I think I’ve had a pretty great year. And a busy one up until October. February saw the Kickstarter campaign for Demon Haunted, which ultimately failed, topping out at $1600 of my $2000 goal. Which was cool. I backtracked and switched over to Indiegogo, making use of their flexible funding option for March. Thanks to some flexibility on Tim Marquitz’s part as my editor, the $900 I managed did the job. Even the self-publishing world benefits from good contacts. And hey, Tim‘s an author, too, and having a rough time with some health stuff, you should go buy a few of his books.

The summer was spent busting my ass on editing and finishing up the map of Ornesea and a few other image products for Grimluk, especially for the Indiegogo backers. In August, I managed to get a basic plot down for Grimluk 3 and started it. Unfortunately, by the time October rolled around, I was exhausted, so it’s sitting around 15,000 words and waiting on me to get back to it. But, ya know, hey, that’s an accomplishment in and of itself.

October also saw my first Orctober and it turned out pretty damn well and was pretty popular. I’ve also been selling pretty well. October saw me make $50 in sales, which is a definite milestone and one I’m stoked about. November and December have been great as well. December especially when compared to last year when I only sold one book for Christmas.

So, what’s in store for 2017? Well, first up, hopefully the move will get done and out of the way as quickly as possible but that’s not looking hopeful. So, beyond that, I give more hope to my mental health issues calming back down and letting me get back to work. I won’t be ready to crowdfund Grimluk 3 by Spring unless I get a sudden round of supercharging. So the plan is to work hard to finish the first draft of 3, start work on book 4, and run a campaign in October and tie it into Orctober and then shoot for another October release in 2018. I’m batting around the idea of doing a massive campaign for books 3 AND 4, but I’ll probably wait and run the campaign for book 4 in October 2018 as well.

Beyond that, we’ll see what else happens. I’m also debating getting some issues with Audible worked out so I can potentially do audiobooks as well. Depending on when I get moved, I might also attempt to start working on a comic with a buddy of mine, though that will depend on several other factors as well. I’ve also contemplated starting a Patreon again for short stories, mostly for a certain side character of Grimluk’s. I’ve also considered doing heavy metal album reviews. I’d consider trying to do Twitch streams but I don’t currently have the hardware to do that.

So, that’s all the news and forecasts I have to offer. I figure I can do some more posts here or there like my Why Orcs post. Was pretty amazed at how popular that turned out. I hope you had a good year, my friends and I hope 2017 meets you better than 2016 did. Remember:

Be excellent to each other!

News & Demon Haunted Teaser

Figured it was time to share a bit more of Demon Haunted with everyone. But first, some news!

Most of everything I’ve been working on with Demon Haunted is basically done. At this point, I have a few little things to finish with some image stuff and that’s it. Demon Haunted is being proofread, the first print proof arrives tomorrow, and everything’s shaping up and looks like it’ll be ready with some wiggle room before October. Whoo!

Secondly, I’ve started Grimluk 3 and I’m already nearly 2500 words in. That’s pretty exciting. Hopefully, I can get the first draft for this one done pretty quick and then start on book 4 as well. But hopefully, when folks start reading Demon Haunted, they enjoy themselves. Otherwise there won’t be a huge point in trying to put out more Grimluk, eh?

Anyways, on with the snippet! Again, no spoilers for the main plot, just a nice scene I’m fond of. Fair warning as this one is more on the disturbing side than the last one. If you’re not fond of snakes or some body horror…

Continue reading

Year One

Holy shit, guys, gals, and hellbeasts. A Demon in the Desert came out a year ago. And it’s been a hell of a year. I’ve made 101 sales, had a successful crowdfunding campaign for the sequel, and a slew of reviews both constructively critical and excited. I’ve met a lot of folks, gotten fan art, learned a lot of things, and I’m like 10,000% sure that Demon Haunted is gonna make you guys even happier than the first book. What a ride.

And hey, if you enjoyed the book and left a review, thank you SO MUCH. If you enjoyed it but haven’t, it would mean a lot to me if you left one. And if that’s something you’re not comfortable with, badger your friends and loved ones in my name! Cause Tim Marquitz thinks Demon Haunted is a great book and this hype train needs to get rolling.

A Whole Mess of News

For those of you reading on the site itself, you might notice the first bit of news: ashearmstrong.com is now mine. I upgraded my wordpress account. Yes, I could’ve gone ahead and set up my own site via hostgator or one of those but honestly, this was the least stressful option and it works just fine. I can fully decorate the site now and I have the domain name. That’s some good stuff.

Secondly, the Indiegogo campaign is over and finished out with a total of $987, just barely shy of half my intended goal. But that’s okay, I can more than work with that thanks to some awesome folks. That grand total is all thanks to a last minute backer who took the highest reward tier, the $300 Governor, which means that he gets to name not only the governor of New Gilead but also the name of the capital city. Very cool and very appreciated.

Moving forward, I’ll be finishing up the edits on the last chapter of Demon Haunted and then running through the rewritten second chapter one more time before declaring the second draft DONE and starting the process of getting this bad boy edited. Should be able to get all that done this week as chapter 19 is just waiting on me and I need to get some character names from a couple of backers.

Indiegogo says I’ll have my funds on Tuesday, and then I can slam down sweaty fistfuls of cash on Bob Kehl’s desk and get the art side of things started. This time around, I’ll have a full sleeve and I’ll be getting a character piece of Grimluk on top of that for promotional use and the second bookmark.

I’m hoping to have the last draft, and maybe even all the formatting and everything else done by the end of August. If everything goes smoothly, I’ll put up a pre-order for the Kindle version on September 1st and release print and digital on October 1st. Should be a good Orctober celebration this year.

And even though it was WAY early, I snagged the Halloween slot for r/Fantasy’s Writer of the Day, so that should be fun. I’ll figure out what all I’ll do in celebration once it gets closer and for those who prefer to stay away from reddit, I’ll have all my other avenues of social media open as usual.

Beyond that, I have a couple of ideas for blog posts I may do soon and if anyone’s interested, I’m thinking about doing a Ghostbusters franchise retrospective leading up to the release of the reboot in July. I’d cover the movies, the cartoons, the main IDW comic series, and the 2008 video game. Let me know what you think about that.

I think that’s everything for now. There will be art updates as they come though the Indiegogo backers will get everything first. Take care y’all!