Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Don't let me go out like "Lost" or "The Sopranos"!

As many of you are fully aware, the DEAD series is wrapping up at the end of October with book 12. Fittingly, it is titled DEAD: End. I still can't believe how this series has slowly grown a VERY loyal and dedicated following. I never imagined that I would be able to walk away from my "day job" and write full time, much less make a living. Sure, I may not be raking in the "big bucks" but I do well enough to pay the rent and keep the lights on, so I have NO complaints.

When the series began, I was hoping to write a nice little four book series, but the story just seemed to have so much more life in it than I could share in only four books. After taking in a lot of the lessons that I learned in the writing of that first book, I came to the conclusion that I would commit to twelve books. I chose my three-book story arc format and was off to the races.

Now that we are here, it is sort of weighing on me. Here a few things I can say for certain... The series proper ends with book twelve. I know some writers who have become "addicted to the money" and returned to a series after finishing it, adding more volumes because their other work does not make that " guaranteed" money they are used to from that particular offering. So, instead of being happy to have actually created a loyal fan base and reveling in their good fortune, they water things down by tacking on more books AFTER the big conclusion the readers believed to be the climactic ending. The DEAD series WILL NOT have a book thirteen. My response to that problem is my DEAD: Snapshot {insert town here} spin off series. 

I will admit here that the Snapshot books don't put up nearly the same sales numbers that the proper DEAD series does, but that is okay. Maybe over time people will come see how various locales around the world end up in the same world they know from the DEAD series. Also, I will reveal here that I will be writing what is currently planned as a three book series detailing the adventures of Kevin and Catie during that 10 year span between books 9 and 10.  I do not know when I will write those books, I just know they will happen. But for now, my PRIMARY focus is DEAD: End. That is where I need YOU!

I have some of the best Beta Readers in the world. I recently tried a new approach to my Beta reading system. I send out a chapter a day to my team. They read it and make notes, then they send them back. Sometimes it is story inaccuracies, other times it is simply edits that I missed during the editing process. After I compile those suggestions, I clean it up. Every three chapters, I send the team what I consider the "FINAL" version. It has all the changes I used and lets them see how their suggestions have come in to help. There might even be a few things that slipped past all the other phases that get caught on that read-through. Once the last chapter is done, I send the book in its entirety. I was amazed at how positive the response was from my team. Many were Beta readers for other authors, and the vote was unanimous in regards to how much they all enjoyed this method. Because of that, I have decided to keep using it. It is very interactive, and my team hears from me almost every day during the process. If you are interested in being part of the DEAD: End Beta team, I need you to email me at We start on October 5th (or at least that is the plan right now).

2016 is actually a year that I will spend concentrating on trying to build the That Ghoul Ava series into something bigger. Additionally, I will be pushing myself to the limit as I add audio book narrator to my resume...and now that I have healed, I have decided to increase the intensity of my training regimen for next year's obstacle course racing season. If you are ever in the area and want to run one with me...let me know. And now, I must return to crafting what I hope will be a finale worthy of the time you have spent with me so far in my DEAD world.

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