1. What's the release date for the next Southern Watch/whatever book?
as I can get it out the door. I don't know when that'll be, but if you
sign up for my newsletter HERE
I promise you'll get an email when it's available. I only send out the
newsletter when I have a new release, so you won't get spammed or have
your info sold.
2. When is the Girl in the Box/Sanctuary/Southern Watch going to become a movie/TV show? It would be awesome!
than "When is the next book coming out?!" this is probably the question I get asked the most. I'm going to be
brutally honest here, so hold on to your hats.
It will most likely never happen.
why. Presently, my books sells pretty well, which makes me a happy author, and it
encourages me to work harder to keep delivering books people enjoy. I
write more books now that I'm doing well than I was in the first years
when I wasn't selling anything or making anything.
But it also puts me in a position where I don't need to make compromises to my creative vision.
seen a favorite book get turned into a movie and have it turn out just
WRONG? For every Hunger Games, Harry Potter or Game of Thrones that gets
it right, there are a ton of them that just don't. What you loved about
the book gets messed up in casting, or in the script, or somewhere in
the transition to the screen. Yeah, I've seen those too. And that
doesn't even count the books that started through the process of getting
made and never actually got done. It's hard to take a book and make a
movie or TV show out of it. A lot of things have to go right, and it
doesn't take much going wrong to kill a project dead.
offers. I'll entertain more in the future. Like I said above, I'm money
motivated enough that if the right offer came along (money,
producer/director vision, etc. - one of these factors weighs more than
the other, but I decline to say which) I'd seriously consider doing it.
But I have zero control over either of those. Authors don't just go out
and make movies from their creations. Most of the time authors sell the
film or TV rights and whatever shows up on screen (if anything) is done
entirely without their input.
I've spent too much time with
my characters to just toss her into someone else's hands without care or
consideration. If I did make a deal for, say, Girl in the Box, my poor, stout, heroine
who doesn't quite fit the Hollywood ideal
for body image would probably end up super tall and thin. That probably
sounds like a minor quibble (and it is) but as the creator the thought
of this and a thousand other character choices I've made being taken out
of my hands make me more than a little queasy.
So I never say
never, when it comes to a film or TV version of my works. But I'm in a
position where I don't have to say 'yes' to it ever, either, if I don't
want to. (And right now I'm firmly in the 'don't want to, maybe not
ever' camp. The thought just makes me ill.) I'm sorry if it disappoints
any of you, but I would rather never see them on screen than see it go
3. I love your books but I found lots of errors in my reading of them! Let me help you fix them.
I will be the first to admit there are errors in my books. There are. Sometimes I miss words, and they don't get caught by my editing team. That happens. What also happens is that sometimes I skip words, I twist phrases, I use the British way of saying something, the American way of saying something, the Southern U.S. way of saying something...I play around a lot with my words. And of course, sometimes I just screw up.
But I'm at a point of diminishing returns on error correction. Each proofreader I add to the mix equals another week of revision time per book. Because I can't just accept someone's wholesale revisions to my books. I actually need to check and make sure that what this person has sent me is a change I want to make. Sometimes it's simple, like when I leave out a key word. Sometimes it's not, especially when it looks like I left out a word, but really I was just doing it on purpose so it sounded more like how people actually talk. I will never choose to follow the rules of grammar when it obstructs the meaning I'm trying to get across. Never, not ever. Pedants, be aware: my writing may not be for you.
Anyway, I'm left with two choices. Assuming I *could* stomp out every single legit error that pulls people out of the reading of the book with just one more pass (which is doubtful), that would add about a week of time per book per year. It would probably be more than that, because I EFFING HATE REVISING. HATE IT. By the last time through, I'm ready to be done with the book forever. Crawling over a manuscript for a fifth time makes my skin crawl, makes me want to curl up in the corner and weep - you get the point. A sixth? Ugh. No, thanks.
I probably get one criticism per month offering to help me fix these errors, spread out over the last four years or so. Call it a hundred complaints. But let's just assume it was one thousand. In that time, I've sold over one million books. That would boil down to one complaint for every 1,000 books sold. (Again, I've inflated that complaint number by a factor of ten, so it's really more like every 10,000 books.) I could either add a week of revision time and another round of crying and screaming and crawling through a manuscript to my schedule...or I could just get the complaints, apologize, and move on with the next book.
Yeah, I know. Some people will take issue with this, say I should do it anyway. But when you write and publish nine books last year, like I did, you start to realize errors are inevitable and that all you can do is your absolute best. I'm self-published, which means I don't have a huge editing team at my disposal. It's me and three others, and they do a great job, but if you're seeking perfection, it's not going to be found here. Sorry.
4. Do you actually make a full-time living doing this?
I do indeed. If you want some pointers on how I do that, you can see my advice to writers HERE.
5. How/where do you get your ideas?
don't know. A lot of times they just seem to fall from the sky and
smack me in the head. Sometimes they come to me while driving, other
times when I'm sleeping (those tend to result in me scrawling on a pad I
keep by my bed to sometimes hilarious results when I try to read them
later - "What the hell did I write here?")
6. I have this really cool book I want to recommend to you.
I have several hundred unread books on my Kindle. I've paid good money for books I
don't know when I'll be able to read. A few of them were favors for
friends (which I still intend to read) but a lot of them were ones where
I said, "I want to read this," plunked down money to do so, then got
distracted or busy and haven't had a chance to do it.
So, anyway, the moral of this story (and I hope I don't sound like a
total asshat by saying this, but I probably am failing on that) is that I
will politely listen to any book reco my fans care to give me, the same
as I do for my friends. And then I will promptly discard it (pretty
much the same as I do with the ones from my friends), because I have too
many books to read (and write) at present and I have no idea when I'd
actually get around to it. Unless I could somehow stop sleeping?
Actually, if there's a book on how I'd never have to sleep again, that's
one recommendation I'd gladly take.
7. How can I get a signed book?
You can't right now. They take a lot of time to collect the money, order the books, sign them and ship them back out, and since I'm a one-man band, that would all fall on me. So I just don't do them right now. I figure most people would rather have the next book than a signed copy of the last one, so I that's how I spend my time.
8. Why can't I find Sanctuary 3-8/Girl in the Box 5-10/any of Southern Watch in audiobook?
Unfortunately, my audiobooks have not sold well enough to even cover the costs (the narrator's time recording/editing/mastering, my time listening to make sure it's all good), and so for the foreseeable future, there will be no more audiobooks in any of my series. That could change if sales pick up, but it is presently very unlikely.
9. I read your 1-3 bundle for free and loved it. I'd really like to buy the later books in the series in a bundle to save money. Why don't you offer that?
I would actually love to do that, but Amazon is obviously the number one market for ebooks, and they make it impossible to do so in a win/win manner for us authors. I'd likely put three books together and price them at like $11.99 or $12.99 or something, giving readers a 20-30% discount for buying a bulk box. But Amazon kicks this idea right in the ass, because anything priced over $9.99 immediately results in a 50% cut to royalties for the author, yes, a 50% pay cut right off the top.
So, I considered the two book sets as well, but because I'd really need to bulk sale in order to make it worth my while to discount 20-30%, the discount would be a lot more anemic on a two book, taking it from $9.99 to like...$8.50 at most. And I have to pay to have the books formatted in two book sets, which costs, and...blegh. Anyway, long answer cut shorter...yeah, I can't do a discount box that makes much financial sense for me or readers. Which is a shame, because if Amazon would work things differently, I'd even consider doing books 4-10 in a big one and taking a bigger discount still.