Don’t Forget to Have Fun

Just a random thought today, was to make sure you’re enjoying yourself.

I know it sounds pretty simple, but I figured I would just mention it specifically.

Writing is a strangely difficult venture. I don’t know of any other “normal job” that continually makes you second guess yourself at every turn. Writing is…special in that way, as are many creative endeavors where you are creating entertainment for people.

Since I do two in addition to my IT day job (writing and YouTube) I understand.

You’re putting yourself out there with each video, or story. You want everything to be perfect, but you’ll never achieve perfection. Not everyone will like your work, and eventually, you just have to ship.

But through it all, and I might talk about this later, keep in mind why you got into this profession to begin with. Don’t get bogged down in the mire of self-doubt and despair. Keep your head up, and bask in the joy knowing you’re making people happy.

Till tomorrow,

Tom

The Arrival

I know I’m like months late for this, but I finally sat down this afternoon to watch The Arrival.

It’s one of those movies where you aren’t quite sure what the point was in the end, but it does leave you thinking.

The part of the main character was expertly played by Amy Adams. Choosing to birth a child knowing fully well that in the future they would die of a horrible cancer is something I can more women doing than men, which was also portrayed quite adeptly by their divorce.

I dunno, I’d love to hear other opinions on the movie. I immediately followed it up with two episodes of Planet Earth II tonight with the family, thus deflating the cud chewing on The Arrival, but I still loved the movie. I’ll have to watch it again and see how I feel.

Other than that, busy day finalizing up some details on my latest project’s outlines, and I started writing the first draft/introduction to it!

Unfortunately, I hit a snag in that I was so overjoyed at the world building that I failed to notice that it matched on a few points to something else out there already. I was so caught up in if I could do it, (thank you Ian Malcolm,) that I didn’t stop to think if I should.

So I need to take a few things back to the drawing board on this.

Till tomorrow,

Tom

Progress

Had a long (very long) day today. Despite sleeping in till 9am for the first time in weeks, I hit the ground running with fresh coffee. 8 hours later (with a short break for lunch) I looked up with a completed “overall” outline for a new series I’m working on. I then spent another 4 hours recording videos and what not.

Individual scenes obviously need a lot of fleshing out, but I’m generally happy with the overall story arc, the characters, and the progression.

I don’t have much to share about it right now, but it will be litRPG, which is a fascinating genre that’s relatively new on the market. I’ve read a fair amount in the genre already, and it really seems to fit my niche of gamer and writer very well.

The book will take place in a VR world, but the focus will be “in-game.” If you’ve ever played World of Warcraft, I think you’ll like it!

Also, non-human main character. Here goes nothing!

Till tomorrow,

Tom

Meetings

Today was a lot of meetings.

Work was back to back meetings (who does these on Fridays?) Consequently, I didn’t get as much done as I had hoped. Such is life, right? Still, I got paid for sitting on meetings not able to do my job. When will they learn?

After work, I immediately joined a writing accountability group with a wonderful group of folks. I won’t name-drop, but some of them are full-time authors. I love this meeting. It’s one of the highlights of my week, meeting with everyone online, seeing the jokes cracked in chat, and sharing our updates for the week. I love hearing about everyone’s progress each week, and it helps keep me motivated to keep doing what I do.

I then joined into a chat while I worked on some other things (web research, and world building fiddling) with another accountability group that I’ve been attending for a couple years now. A group of writers that I met on a writing cruise in 2015.

Once that one ended, I hopped on Discord to see if the ragtag  Youtubers  I play with on a Factorio multiplayer server wanted to record. Unfortunately, no one was available, so I ended up recording an episode all by myself. Not exactly what I wanted, as it’s a server for a reason, but beggars/choosers and all that.

I then had a short break for dinner and a walk around the block with my wife and got back to process the video. That, along with a couple other banked videos are processing now as I speak.

As if the day hadn’t gone on long enough, I still hadn’t actually gotten any writing done today, so you guessed it, I started my writing around nine in the evening.

Long day? Yeah. But I got my writing done, got an episode recorded that’ll go out on Sunday, and I’m getting closer to my goals. Now I’m going to bed after an 18 hour non-stop day.

Till tomorrow,

Tom

Worldbuilding Research

Today I spent most of my free time working on world building for a new project I’m just getting into.

It’s going to be fantasy-esque, and I thought I would share some of the research methods I’ve been using. Now I don’t claim to be an expert at this, these are just some of the tips I’ve found that seem to be helpful.

Please feel free to share any you have found in your world building.

Google “Archaic or obscure BLANK.” For instance, I wanted to know aquatic creatures that weren’t just water elementals, and bam, I found a massive list of tons of mythical creatures that had something to do with water.

Google “other ways of saying BLANK.” This will help you figure out words that you’ve never heard of or ones you once knew but just need reminding. It’s also helpful to find out ways and patterns that people talk so you can put a unique slant on your project.

Google image search on anything. I know this is simple, but it’s easy to forget that the internet has pictures on it! Not just because I don’t use them on this blog, but also because the first page of Google is all text. So remember to use that, you never know when you’ll find something really cool!

That’s all the time I have for today! Gotta get back to world building

Till tomorrow,

Tom

$0.59 Day

I’m not much of one to share lots of photos or screengrabs, but I wanted to grab this one today to share with everyone.

First off, thank you for the support around my next series! I know not everyone likes short stories but I’m pouring a lot of love into Korrigan and I know everyone is going to love him as much as I do. I’ve already gotten a few preorders, so thank you to everyone to did so!

Now, onto today’s topic.

As you can see from the screenshot, I made $0.59 today.

Not a lot, right? Yeah, welcome to the reality of being a no-name author on the internet.

I’m not disheartened, though. When I started up my YouTube channel in February of last year, I was putting in a solid 40hours a week getting that channel going. After a solid month of recording, editing, uploading, scheduling, and stressing about it, I made, and I kid you not: $1.00 for the entire month of February.

My hourly rate wasn’t even $0.01 at that point. It’s certainly gone up since then, and I don’t devote as many hours as I did back then, but still, this is the reality. Content creation on the internet, entertainment in general, these are long games you must play.

Did I mention I made $0.24 yesterday?

The beauty of this first book is that it’s there. It’s up and people will find it. It’s not going away.

These numbers are largely through Kindle Unlimited page reads, by the way. I’m not really making sales, but page reads count, and I’m willing to bet that page reads will count for most of my income from this book until I have the second or third out.

Let’s do some math:

Assuming I never put anything else up, and A Moonlit Task continues to average $0.45, which is what my daily average has been over the last week if you don’t count Sunday (I’ll bring this up later).

I will make $3.15 a week, or $163.80 per year.

Now truth be told, I spent more than twice that on the cover art alone, let alone editing and other costs. So at this rate, I might make my money back on this one book alone in about ten years.

Frightening, right?

Well not really. The first book is usually going to be your worst. I’m new, no one knows who I am, and I only have one thing up there. Technically I have Into the Void, my steampunk short story up there as well, but short stories don’t sell well, so I’m going to ignore that for now.

But I have something else coming out next month, the first episode of Korrigan, and Korrigan 02 coming out in April. Again they are short stories, so I don’t expect a lot of sales from them, but they keep me relevant. They keep me producing, and they help fill out my catalog a little bit. By the time End Gate Book 2 comes out (title tbd), I should have 6-8 titles available for sale on my Amazon page.

Okay, it’s late, and I need to get to bed. I won’t forget to bring up Sunday.

Till tomorrow,

Tom

The Sacking of Gildebrand Manor available for Pre-Order!

Hello Everyone!

Announcement time! Gather around children and let me tell you a story about a dwarf named Korrigan.

Korrigan was a youngling just like you when tragedy befell his race. Now Korrigan is the last dwarf on earth, and he has spent the last few hundred years trying to distract himself from the burden of being the sole survivor of his race.

Hitting rock bottom, Korrigan gambled away the last thing he had, his freedom, and now he is a slave to the Pittsburg Goblin Clan.

The Korrigan Chronicles is a series of short stories that focus on a point in Korrigan’s life as he overcomes his painful past, discovers his true destiny, and reclaims his connection to the Earthsong.

Korrigan’s story started centuries ago, but we will meet him in the 1920’s.

Set in the same world as A Moonlit Task, The Korrigan Chronicles will be familiar, yet different. Nancy Moon only recently discovered magic, but Korrigan has been in the magical world his whole life. I hope you all find something to like about this intrepid dwarf.

I’ve had a fun time writing these stories and I can’t wait for you to read them!

The first episode will be out March 7th, and is available for preorder now. I have the price discounted to $0.99 until March 1st, so grab your copy today!

If anyone is interested in an Advance Review Copy, please email me.

Till tomorrow,

Tom