Plaguewalker In The Flesh!

My time in arctic Norway is coming to a close, which makes me sad–but the great news is that I’ll be returning to Milwaukee in a week to gear up for Plaguewalker‘s official launch on October 26, with a very special “tag team of terror” reading with fellow author Paul McComas the following day.

If you’re in the southeastern Wisconsin area–or if you’ve got a lot of frequent flyer miles and like Marcus a lot–please come say hello at one of the events and let me know you’ve visited this site.

Reading and Book Signing, 7 p.m. Friday, October 26 at Boswell Books, 2559 N. Downer Ave., Milwaukee: This is it, folks, the official worldwide, dare I say galactic launch of Plaguewalker thanks to the fine folks at Boswell, who have been so supportive of local authors. As someone who is only slightly less introverted than Marcus, I am kind of dreading the actual public part of this, but I promise to drink too much coffee and be entertaining in a wild, rambly kind of way.

Tag Team of Terror Reading, 2 p.m. Saturday, October 27 at the Wauwatosa Public Library, 7635 W. North Ave., Wauwatosa: I’ll be doing another reading, another over-caffeinated ramble and signing any copies of Plaguewalker thrust in my direction, but this time I’ll be sharing billing with award-winning author Paul McComas, who penned Unforgettable, Planet of the Dates and Unplugged. Paul was an early supporter of Plaguewalker and has been a great mentor. His writing is an addictive blend of sci-fi, horror and comedy, with his native Wisconsin often featuring as both place and character.

I’ve got a few other projects in the works for Plaguewalker and am almost finished with the final edit of The War’s End, so watch this space for more announcements. Thanks as always for reading and please say hello later this month at Boswell Books or the Tosa Public Library!

I’d Like To Thank This Curious Fellowship of Strangers

I’m on the eve, metaphorically speaking, of seeing Plaguewalker published. The interior has been proofed (by my ever-fabulous editor Dulcie), formatted, checked and re-checked. The covers, back and front, are uploaded and ready. I’m just waiting on one small detail, and then hope to have the book available within a few weeks. I figure hey, it took me a long time to write it and much longer to work up the courage to share it with others. I can wait a fortnight or so to make sure everything is as it should be.

While I’m excited about actually seeing it in print (though I personally won’t see it till August, when mail service resumes here in Antarctica), what I feel more than anything is a happy kind of gratitude. My family and friends have been supportive of this endeavor from the start, and for that I’m thankful. But even more amazing to me has been the number of total strangers willing to share their knowledge and offer encouragement.

During early research I did when I began seriously considering the indie publishing route, I stumbled on Joel Friedlander’s site, The Book Designer. Wow. What a fantastic source of user-friendly information. And it’s free. I did eventually purchase some additional guides he had on offer about specific elements of book design, but I paid less for them than I would for a decent meal and think it was money well-spent.

More recently, a friend who is a fan of sci-fi author Kay Kenyon suggested I check out her site. Again, I was astounded by the amount of useful (and free) information, and in particular the practical but encouraging tone. People like Kay and Joel are established in the business. They already have audiences. They don’t need to spend time helping out authors new to indie publishing but they do, and I think that’s terrific.

Even in the community forums at CreateSpace, the indie publishing hub I’m using to bring Plaguewalker to readers, there are dozens of knowledgeable people who’ll answer the most mundane questions from newbies, over and over, with no financial gain for themselves.

At a time when the traditional world of publishing is contracting (many would say imploding), it’s encouraging to see so many skilled and seasoned industry people sharing the wealth of knowledge they possess rather than clutching it tighter to themselves as they slink off into caves murmuring “my preciousssss…”

You didn’t think I’d go too long with a LoTR reference, did you?

So, as I wait for the final bit of preparation to fall into place before Marcus heads off into the world, I thank all these amazing people who offer their time and talent to anxious authors like me, not to make money but to make better books. For everyone.

New! Read an Excerpt

Read the first chapter of Plaguewalker here. The excerpt is the first of several planned updates to the site as PW‘s publishing date draws nearer. The book itself is now going through a final proof by my gracious editor Dulcie. Meanwhile, I’m attending to a few marketing and distribution issues in preparation for next month’s official launch of both the book and this site.

Got any comments on what you’d like to see on this site? I would love to hear your thoughts.