Tour Starting Next Week

ScotchOkay, so I’ve spent most of this month answering like a billion interview questions. I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve explained where the idea for Probability Angels came from or what my hobbies are.

The plus side is that Nurture Virtual Book Tourz got me tons of interviews, hence the flood of questions.

The downside was crafting each response to be fresh. I didn’t want to cut and paste answers, that would be cheating everyone, so I tried to answer similar questions with different slants or shed light on some other aspect of of my response.

The other downside is that I celebrated finishing my last interview a little too hard last night. With scotch. And no dinner.

On the other hand I rocked out in my new denim shirt so that’s cool.

Me in a denim shirt

Hells yes.

This Is This Is My Game

TypewriterThis is This Is My Game (haha…god that’s so confusing to type), a website that my friend Tracy, or @Rolling20s as he’s often referred to on here, has wound up co-running somehow. I don’t remember the full story. There were a lot of proper nouns involved.

He approached me about manning a blog over at this new site and we’re giving it a trial run, though it seems like it’s going to work out. The main idea is me comparing and contrasting storytelling as an author with the collaborative storytelling that takes place during tabletop gaming. Plus I’ll be juggling chainsaws. Assuming the insurance comes through on that.

Anyway, the current result is right here for your reading pleasure. Only two posts thus far but I should be popping up there every week on Wednesday. Just like I do on here. Only with a topic.

Oh, and the Kickstarter for Tracy’s new game, School Daze, launched yesterday. Check it out and support a great independent gamer.

Virtual Book Tour in March

nurture book tourI recently booked a virtual tour with Nurture Your Books.

For those who don’t know, virtual tours are when you and your book are scheduled to appear on a variety of blogs across the internet during a set period of time. This is sort of like what I try to do myself via cold emailing, but by hiring a professional I get access to a much wider network. And I don’t have to cold email anyone.

The great people over at Nurture have set up a ton of reviews and interviews (I think I’ve answered roughly fifteen billion interview questions) and I think a guest post or two.

I did a much smaller book tour back in the fall and was underwhelmed by the results, as well as by the woman I was working with.

I need to stress that the people at Nurture have been amazing thus far and I’m hoping to see much better results.

Here’s the schedule they’ve set up:

Probability Angels by Joseph Devon – NURTURE Book Tour Schedule:

I’m gonna be all over the freaking place and I’m crazy excited about it.

Also they made this:

Probability Angels Nurture Tour Banner

I look vaguely professional there.

I’m not sure how they did that. I think they’re magical beings or something.

Anyway, get ready for more of me in March than you’ll know what to do with.

How You Can Help Indie Authors

Young woman telling a secret to a manHere’s a question I’ve been asked a few times in the past month: “Where should I buy your book so that you get the highest royalty possible?”

The people asking were new readers who were looking to support my work and my life as much as they possibly could. It’s a lovely sentiment and it makes me warm all over whenever it’s expressed, but here’s the deal. At the volume of sales that I’m working with right now, the whole publishing thing is a losing proposition financially.

I’m a start-up company. A research project. The quest for a shipping route to India. However you want to think about it, doesn’t matter, the point is that there is only one thing you need to worry about if you want to support me and my work, and it isn’t money. Money comes later.

Right now? Right now it’s a review.

I need reviews and I need them posted on my book’s pages at the largest book store in the world, Amazon.com.

If you use GoodReads or Shelfari or one of those services, reviews there are good. If you have a blog, reviews there are good.

But the absolute most bang you can get for your support is to post a review on Amazon. And it doesn’t need to be a lengthy discourse on my books, or an in depth discussion on their literary merits. Those are awesome and if you want to do that go nuts, but I feel like too many people don’t leave reviews because they feel like they don’t have anything important to say.

Well, whatever, so maybe your review won’t become voted the most helpful review of my book. But it will provide data for the Amazon algorithm. It will link my book up with other books. It will mark my book as a book with a readership, and this in turn will get it recommended to other readers.

So I’m begging you, and not just for me but for any up-and-coming author whose work you love, if you want to support them throw them some stars and a few sentences on Amazon primarily, and anywhere else you happen to post reviews as well.

That’s how you can help me. That’s how you can help other authors. That’s how you can help other readers find new authors. And, gosh darn it, that’s how you can help save publishing as a whole.

Please. If you want to back me, go to Amazon right now and write me a review.

I thank you in advance for your time.

 

The Joy of Research

ElephantsI’m starting to do research for the third book in the Matthew and Epp series. Technically I research things constantly in a “Look at that guy! Could I use that guy in a story? Did you hear that noise? Maybe I could use that noise somewhere!” sort of way.

But recently I’ve started to actually do reading research to prepare for the upcoming books. I need to learn about ancient Rome, clothes, Australian penal colonies, and a few other tidbits.

A lot of people, when I tell them that I write fiction, get a mad gleam in their eye and say something like, “I’ll bet the best part about that job is doing the research.”

In their minds, if I have to research criminal under-lords or whatever, then I actually join some criminal society and rise up through the ranks, participating in dazzling jewel thefts and midnight gunfights aboard a zeppelin somewhere or god knows what.

In reality I purchase or download an absurd number of books and I sit and I read, and I read, and I read.

Yeah. It’s awesome.

Here is the book I read to research Isaac Newton for Probability Angels:

It was a thrill-a-minute page-turner full of explosions and sexy international intrigue.

Oh. Wait. No it wasn’t. It was the most boring book in the world and a good third of it was FILLED WITH MATH EQUATIONS.

But there were some good, invaluable even, nuggets hidden in this tome of boredom and the read was well worth it for my work. That’s what research really is for me, not an attempt to learn the topic I’m researching backwards and forwards, but a sifting process where I pluck out striking images, quotes, moments, and mindsets to graft onto my writing and give it the flavor of reality.

And, to be fair, not all of it is boring. The ancient Rome stuff has been full of goodies.

My favorite thus far? The Greek general Pyrrhus once attempted to intimidate a Roman ambassador by inviting him into a room where he had an elephant hidden behind a curtain and then, in mid-conversation, dropping the curtain.

Oddly the ol’ elephant behind the curtain trick didn’t work. The visiting diplomat didn’t even flinch when a fucking elephant appeared behind him out of nowhere.

Which is sad.

I really wish that trick had caught on.

I know I’m so using it if I ever hold office anywhere.

“So, you think there should be a stop sign on the corner of Main and Oak streets? Well have you ever thought to consider LOOKATTHISITSAGIANTFUCKINGELEPHANT!!!!!!”