Saturday, 28 December 2013

The 2013 Scorecard

2013 was an interesting year for me on the writing front, mostly because I followed the lead of Shane Jiraiya Cummings and Hugh Howey, and tried self-publishing through Amazon and Smashwords with far greater success than I could have imagined when I first set out.

Despite the naysayers of the established pros and the fear self-publishing is generating in the world today, I think it is a great opportunity for writers, offering more than one path to success in the industry. I've been able to release collections of my science fiction, weird fiction and reboot my Harrison Peel spies versus the Cthulhu Mythos series, as well as working with various authors to develop sampler books of our works. I've also been able to work with Albedo One to get their magazine out in Kindle and ePub versions too. The reach to my audience has dramatically improved and I'm getting more positive reviews than I've ever had.

If you are sitting on the fence with self-publishing, I'd suggest the worst that will happen if you do is that no one will read your book or review it, and that's no worse of than where you are right now. Even if you only get bad reviews they help, because readers disagree with reviewers and buy it anyway. Reviewers, if you don't want a book to sell, say nothing.

The other fantastic news this year was that I was asked to become Art Editor with Albedo One magazine, and was able to help the team now led by Robert Neilson and Frank Ludlow to produce issue 44, with some very excellent tales included within. Robert, Frank and the rest of the team have been very supportive of my writing over the years, and it is an honour to join the team in a more senior capacity, after years as a reviewer.

Okay, here are the publications. The following ebooks were released this year:
  • The Entropy Conflict (SF)
  • The Uncertainty Bridge (SF)
  • The Nightmare Dimension (Horror and Weird Fiction)
  • The Impossible Object: The Harrison Peel Files Book 1 (Cthulhu Mythos)
  • The Weaponized Puzzle: The Harrison Peel Files Book 2 (Cthulhu Mythos)
New stories published this year include:
  • "Driven Underground" in The Impossible Object (Amazon Direct Publishing)
  • "The Weaponized Puzzle" in The Weaponized Puzzle (Amazon Direct Publishing)
  • "The Entropy Conflict" in The Entropy Conflict (Amazon Direct Publishing)
  • "The Road to Afghanistan" in What Scares the Boogeyman? anthology
  • "Playgrounds of Angolaland" in Eldritch Chrome edited by Brian M Sammons and Glynn Barrass (Chaosium)
  • "Romero 2.0" in Undead & Unbound with Brian M Sammons
  • "The Dream Quest of a Thousand Cats" in The Nightmare Dimension (Amazon Direct Publishing)
The following books I edited and were released this year:
  • Undead & Unbound with Brian M. Sammons and published by Chaosium
  • Extreme Planets with David Kernot and Jeff Harris is at the printers but won't be out until 2014, so it doesn't yet make the list.
I had lots of reprints for 2013 most in my ebooks, but of note was "Subtle Invasion" appearing in
Best Tales of the Apocalypse edited by D.L. Snell and Bobbie Metevier, which makes this the third time the story has appeared in a "Best of" collection. The other was "The Masked Messenger" with John Goodrich appearing in issue 22 of Lovecraft eZine.

As I said before, I contributed to launching the Australian Horror Writers Sampler 2013 and the Cthulhu Mythos Writers Sampler 2013, both of which have been a great success in promoting all the authors involved. I was also Art Editor for Albedo One #44. I also wrote "The Jermyn Horror" and with Peter Gilham "The Crystal of Chaos" appearing in the Call of Cthulhu role-playing game book, The House of R'lyeh.
2014 will see my short stories in the anthology Extreme Planets, and the magazines Albedo One and Lovecraft eZine, and a chapter in the forthcoming reprint of the classic role-playing game, Horror on the Orient Express. I will also be releasing more Harrison Peel collections starting with Book 3: The Elder Codex.

Thanks to everyone who has supported my writing this year, especially to reviewers who go a long way in making a writer become noticed. Special thanks to David Kernot, who as always has been a great sounding board on my writing.

Cthulhu Mythos Writers Sampler 2013

A late post but this year I appeared in the Cthulhu Mythos Writers Sampler 2013, available for 99c from Amazon, which I assisted in pulling together.

The book has proved to be rather successful considering the number of downloads and positive reviews. My contribution included a sample from my Harrison Peel series. Here is the blurb:

Inside this book you’ll find a taste of some of today’s top Cthulhu Mythos and Lovecraftian writers.

“The Great White Bed” – A senile old man makes a deal with a strange being for a new lease on life. What happens when a book reads you?

“The Cellar Gods” – In the 1940s, a young medical student protects a beautiful Asian woman from prejudiced townsfolk, only to discover she is connected to mysterious entities from an unholy dimension.

“The Locked Door” – The visions of a psychic threatens the existence of a secret order.

“In the Gyre” – A research vessel investigating a growing pollution problem in the ocean finds that something else has discovered a use for our waste material—something designed for building, and growing, and multiplying.

“The Gate and the Way” – Poking around the local spook house for redeemable cans and bottles, two brothers stumble upon cosmic horrors from beyond space and time.

“I Cannot Begin To Tell You” – A desperate father kidnaps his infant son and flees to a remote cabin to wait out an apocalypse only he can perceive. Is the man psychotic? Or is the boy a conduit for an ancient malevolence from the depths of Time?

“Cutter” – A man and boy are trapped in an abandoned house by plague of bizarre monsters.

“Graveyard Orbit” – In the future, the deep space exploration vessel Wellington encounters the unthinkable orbiting the uncharted planet Osiris II. Amid the debris of a trillion alien corpses, the Wellington’s Captain Walker will stumble upon an unlikely ally—and potentially, the secrets of the universe.

“The Weaponized Puzzle” – A Russian spy steals an alien artifact from the Australian Government which soon transforms into a prison, and Australian spy Harrison Peel must solve its various puzzles and confront its captive horrors to escape again.

Fiction by Don Webb, Jeffrey Thomas, Brian M, Sammons, Peter Rawlik, William Meikle, Kevin Lucia, David Kernot, Scott R. Jones, C.J. Henderson, Cody Goodfellow, David Dunwoody, Shane Jiraiya Cummings and David Conyers. Cover illustration by Paul Mudie.

This sampler collection provides links to the various author’s works, personal interviews, and further information on their e-books.

Step inside, and discover the newest horror releases lurking in the nightmare lands of Lovecraft…