End of July Update

CalendarObliqueThe numbers sucked, but they’re not the whole story. I only wrote about 30,000 words in July, with about half of that on social media. There’s probably about another 5000 words in there that didn’t get counted, and I’ve got some edits underway for Debts of My Fathers.

The bulk of that 5000 words is some world-building. As I’m working on the edits to Debts – and after completing the drafts to the third book, Oaths of My Fathers – I’ve realized that there are some history elements that I want to include in Debts so that it’s not all backloaded into the final books. That also means finally converting some of the back-story elements from vague ideas into more concrete words. I need to confirm a couple of dates and numbers, but then the brief histories of the Republic and the Confederacy will turn into a series of blog entries here.

I’m also making some improvements in my health. I’ve been back on the treadmill pretty regularly for about a month now. Quite some time back, I started on a project to walk a thousand miles. Both for my back and because of a history of anxiety and depression, I need to be walking more, some of it brisk cardio and some of it slower. Well, with some other problems and distractions (including a treadmill that had so many defects that it was eventually replaced by the manufacturer), that’s been a slow trip. However, I’ve been going well the last month or so, and if I can keep it up this month, I’ll pass through the 500-mile mark in early September.

I’m currently hoping to get Debts of My Fathers out in December. It still needs a lot of work, but at least now I have a good plan for what that work needs to be and how to get it done.

I also have to admit that yesterday’s apparent suicide of Robin Williams hit me kind of hard. I don’t feel like talking about my own bout of depression today, but it reminds me that life is painfully short, and that I don’t want to get to the end with nothing to show for myself.

In other news, I’m getting ready to rerelease Beneath the Sky with a new cover. It’s a significant improvement, but I might still revamp it again down the road. I’m also hunting for a cover artist to do the rest of the Father Chessman series. I’m reasonably happy with the cover for Ships of My Fathers, but I don’t think I’m capable of what’s needed for the rest of them.

I suppose I should also say something about the whole Amazon-Hachette thing, except to say that I don’t really have a lot to say that is my own. I’m not really on anyone’s side, except to say that Amazon has treated me better than Hachette, Patterson, Turow, or Preston ever have. I think I’m far better off with Amazon than I’d ever be with Hachette, and in that world-view where everyone else is Just Like Meyou’re probably guilty of this as well – I think most of Hachette’s authors would be better off on their own. That doesn’t really have anything to do with this pricing dispute between Amazon and Hachette, but it doesn’t predispose me towards Hachette or those shilling for it.

In the meantime, I’ve got books to write and kids to raise.