It took me 18 years to publish my first story. I don't mean that it took me 18 years to write it, I mean it took me 18 years to finally have the courage to publish it. I edited and revised and edited and revised. For a few years I wrote many other things that I "planned" to publish one day, too.
The only thing I needed was to do it once. Just once, and I knew I would realize it wasn't such a big deal.
So, nobody reads my story... nobody likes my story.
I can live with that. I can't be afraid of what others thinks about my work, imagination and effort.
And so I published my first story, perhaps not the best one, but it's a start. It all had to start from the beginning, and that's what The Recruit does. It starts from the beginning.
I can't be afraid. Not anymore!
Sometimes people ask me how come I like to write.
Growing up, I wasn't a good reader. I rarely read at all. My reading assignments at school were scarce and the few books assigned didn't call to me. We rarely (or perhaps never) read any fantasy. All realistic fiction, and very little of it.
It wasn't until I was much older (coming out of high school) that I began to read.
The first book that inspired me to read was Michael Crichton's Jurassic Park. It was the first time I realized reading a book was like watching a longer, cooler movie (with better special effects, since they were all in my head). It was the first time I realized that writing a book didn't have to be a philosophical, deep and emotional affair. No. I started to discover that I could write whatever I wanted. I could make my own movies!
So, 1993 was the year that I became a reader.
It was 1994 that I became a writer.
In 1994, a year after I discovered my love of books, I came across the wonderful Vampire Novels.
Ever since I was a kid I loved vampire stories. I loved transformation stories into vampires, werewolves, animals, etc. I just loved them. And when I read Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles (starting with Interview with the Vampire), I knew I could bring any story about the things I liked to live.
So, I started doing what I think a lot of emerging writers do, I discovered fanfiction, read it and then wrote it. It's a technique I've used before. For example, I read the X-Men comic books (starting in 1992, if I'm not mistaken; although I wouldn't call it reading, I suppose), and I started copying the art. I remember buying poster board and making posters of my favorite X-Men. That's how I got better at drawing, by copying. Later I would develop my own style - and even drew and wrote my own comic books!
So, back to writing.
Yes, I started with fanfiction, Vampire Chronicle fanfiction... which later turned into my own original stories.
Now, I know my writing has improved over the years. I think it will always need improvement, but at least I'm starting to get my work out there.
And how did you get into writing?
I have finished revising the first short story in my collection of short stories (soon to be published), A Drop Of Fantasy.
The first story is called The Breakup.
I hope you like it! I wrote it when I was around 22 years old... It’s been a while.
I have never really created a NAVSA logo. I tried once, but it didn’t work.
Maybe I should try again!
Or maybe I should have a give away for best logo and give wonderful prizes!
No, I don’t know… but definitely food for thought!
Once, my husband gave me this cup. It is based on the logo I had tried to create. See that letter V? It’s supposed to be a fang.
I started writing the N.A.V.S.A. series back in 1998 (before I even got married!) because of a dream I had one day. The dream included Dylan and Rebecca in a scene that actually became one of the first scenes in Book 2 Werewolf Phenomenon.
Book One became the genesis (and it was actually named Genesis for a looong time before I decided to rename it The Recruit) and Book Two became the story of how they meet team member #3, and Book Three became the story of how the meet member #4 - they both have names, I promise.
Book Three also formally introduces the villain and some other important key events to the story of volume 1.
Then, there’s Volume 2.
Well, volume 2 and volume 3 happen during the same timeline, but in different places. I can’t go over much of volume 2, but volume 3 is the story of Michael.
I really enjoy writing about my N.A.V.S.A. universe. It’s pretty awesome. Right?
I know I should probably start working on the second N.A.V.S.A. book, Werewolf Phenomenon.
I know. I’m sorry.
The good news is these stories are already written. Just like Part 1 was written 3 years ago (it was later revised and edited and prepared for publication, a process I’m hoping won’t take that long for the following books).
In reality, the N.A.V.S.A. universe is very vast.
I have written three volumes taking place in this universe! I will talk about that in my next post.
For now, I am working on my short stories. I began writing long and complicated stories when I was in college. It was mostly practice, I see it now. I did that until one day I decided it was futile. I needed to write shorter stories that actually had an ending and were more controlled until I got the hang of writing to the standard I wanted.
So, during my last year of college and my first two years of my adult - working - life, I wrote several short stories. Most of them were based in real life events or dreams I had.
My next book project is to make a collection of five of these stories.
I plan to name this book “A Few Drops of Fantasy”.
I am in the revising/editing part right now… yes, I plan to take care of the editing as I am revising. Hopefully it won’t backfire.
The story has about 20,000-25,000 words. It will be short.
I am about to finish with the first of the short stories: “The Breakup”.
I just love fantasy… don’t you?
Well, I finally got my email reply about my Nook Press account!!
I actually go the answer yesterday and the email said they would have their Accounts Payable Departments take a look at my case.
I don’t really understand what’s going on, since the only information I am providing is my Social Security Number and Bank Account and I am sure I know both of those things...
I am approved!
This morning I got the “okay”. I clicked the green “Publish” button and my ebook is now Processing. We’ll see how long this takes.
I also started preparing my paperback through Nook Press, but they require a PDF with both the front and back of the book. From me! That will take more time. So, I will leave it at that for now and focus on Marketing the electronic version.
I am SOO bad at marketing... I should write a post about that.
Regardless to say... it’s bad.
So, it looks like Kobo works kind of like Nook, but in Canada.
I want in, too!
I did start the process, but one more time are confused about the tax information. it’s not self-explanatory on their website. At least not to me!
I will find out more. I will conquer!
More to come!
I don’t own a Nook, but one of my BBFs does! Reading online I discovered that when publishing on KDP had the option to join the Kindle unlimited gang. I thought about it to get my book around more, but then I also thought I wanted it EVERYWHERE and the kindle unlimited would, well, limit me.
I decided not to join.
I started filling out the Nook Press tax info, but they tell me I’m lying.
I am NOT lying.
They now want me to email this information? I don’t think so.
I still haven’t given up on Nook, but I am not emailing them anything!!
Also, I did write back how confused I was by their email and haven’t heard back since.
For years now I’ve known that I want the trees Rebecca uses at the end of “The Recruit” to be featured in the cover. I once looked for these trees online and I found beautiful pictures of them that… WERE COPYRIGHTED! No!
Who would have thought someone copyrighted trees! (or tree pictures, at least).
So, my job became to find trees like these and take a picture of them.
Now, I just so happen to know about the existence of these trees because when I was a kid I got sent to a camp near Nashville, Tennessee (which coincidentally is where I located N.A.V.S.A.). I knew where to find the trees because I had seen them, touched them, smelled them!
Unfortunately, I don’t live anywhere near Tennessee, which meant it would be hard.
I did have a friend who went to Tennessee one summer, but by then my family and I had driven to Disney World and in one of the rest stops I saw THE TREES! I got out of the car running to take a picture of as many trees as I could in order to get trees for my cover while my husband took the kids to the bathroom.
Yes! Yes! I got the trees! And they were MINE!
Now, as for the cover…
I first used the cover creator they have on KDP. Horrible cover… it looked like this:
This is how I published the thing. See the trees?
But, then, as I went over the createspace cover creator I came up with this:
Much better I think… and look at the trees!! This is also only part of one of the pictures I took, and I hadn’t noticed how the first three trees line up like that. Isn’t my picture awesome?
So anyway, I later changed the KDP cover and if you look at the ebook page on amazon.com it does show the new, pretty cover. Unfortunately, as I try to share it on Facebook to get more people to know about the existence of my book… the old one shows up!
The DKP does say it may take 24 hours for the changes to display. I hope the pretty cover gets to the Facebook sharing system soon :)