Tag Archives: Buying Time

Happy New Year 2015!

Happy New Year everyone! I think I’ll do for 2015 what I did for 2014: I’ll post “a look back” this week…and “a look ahead” next week. WordPress provided me with an interesting report, but they’ve gussied it up so it’s more flair than substance this year. A few interesting tidbits from it though:

My most popular post for 2014 was The Origin of Hotty Toddy, a post I wrote in an attempt to poke fun at the obnoxious University of Mississippi football chant. I think what happens is that since they were winning this year, more people heard the chant and wanted to know a little something about it and my post turned up in the google search. Kinda funny.

The most popular day for my blog in 2014 was Oct 4, which was, probably not coincidentally the day after the Black Bears beat Alabama. Yeah, I post about other stuff (like this entry), but random googlers tend to find the Hotty Toddy post.

032714_2005_MegaCon20142.jpgMy top commenters are some pretty decent writers/bloggers, so I’m honored they visit AND comment on my page. Because of that, they get a shout out from me now! Krystol Diggs, who is a former student of mine from Full Sail. Kayla Dean, who I met when she attended the Hemingway Writers Retreat in Piggott, Arkansas. Freeda Baker Nichols, another writer I met at Hemingway and who is a far more consistent blogger than I am! Dot Hatfield, yet another writer I met at Hemingway! You see a trend, don’t you? Rounding out the top five is my mom—thanks, Mom! Show these writers some love and check out what they have to say since they’re often nice enough to leave comments for me here!

I did a handful of shows/appearances/speaking engagements again this year and had a blast at all of them. In March I returned to Memphis where I was the keynote Speaker at the Mid-South Christian Writers Conference. I met a small press publisher that expressed interest in my work. We’ve been talking for several months. Nothing hard and fast, but it’s promising.

In April, I returned to the Hemingway Writers Retreat where we had a great retreat. I was also a comic guest at MegaCon again this year. I moderated a panel “Break-in Stories” with a handful of really talented folks!

In September I got to go back to the Shoals Alabama area where I was a guest at the Geek Gathering in Sheffield. It was a fantastic little con and I sure wish they’d had something like that when I lived there. That area remains the only place I’d willingly go back to in a heartbeat! Then in October, I was a presenter at the Florida Writers Conference where I met a whole slew of new people.

Creatively, it’s been a decent year, too. I’ve been talking to a few artists not mentioned on this page before about projects, so hopefully something will come of those and you’ll see it here.

ArkansasReviewIn August, my short story “Broken Down Truck” was published by Arkansas Review (v.45 #2) and in September, my graphic novel adaptation of The Remaining was published.

With all the advances in digital media, I’m looking to release some of my older comic work digitally and possible make it available via print on demand.

My novel, Buying Time, was made available in print via Amazon and in Kindle format on Christmas day! So I hope you’ve picked up your copy! Autographs are free! J Oh! And if you’ve already read it, pop on over there and leave a review on Amazon. I hear they really help!

It’s cool to see technology advancing so quickly…cool, but a little scary. Hopefully you’ve all “liked” my author page on Facebook so you can keep up with all the new stuff.

2 Comments

Filed under General

Why don’t I focus?

Some who’ve stopped by here have suggested I write more about writing. And I can appreciate that. I know that it can be frustrating to those of you who don’t know me that well to see me posting about my daughter’s tennis and college trials or my son’s band and baseball achievements. But I thought I’d take one of my blogs to explain my thinking…ya ain’t gotta like it, but at least I’ll try to make some sense for you.

When I first started blogging, my intentions were pretty simple: I wanted a way to keep my friends and family posted on the goings-on of me and mine. It seemed we were moving quite a bit, making some dear friends in each place. Keep in mind, too, that this was in the days before facebook became what it is today. I also wanted to use the blog as an outlet to continue to keep my writing muscles exercised and to feel like I had to do something. I’d enjoyed the weekly columns I’d gotten into the habit of writing for the Piggott paper (now the Rector paper) and the feedback I’d gotten from the community was favorable so it seemed like a good idea.

After some time I found myself without a job and in graduate school. It became a good opportunity to share some writing thoughts as well as some reviews of the books I’d read. I’m not big on reviews, but because I read a lot of superhero fiction, I thought those who had an interest in sci-fi and/or superhero books might get a little something out of the reviews.

Then, I had new work hitting the stands with Huckleberry Finn and Wizard of Oz graphic novels…and of course, my first novel. The blog became an opportunity to promote those things. I hate that idea on my blog, though, because I sometimes feel like I’m “pushing” my work to my friends and family…who would probably be interested in it anyway…but still. I know it’s one of those things that I have to do and I try to think that things like the recent blog hop is a necessity to get more people familiar with my work.

As I started finding myself speaking at writer’s conferences and leading writing workshops more and more, the blog became a way to talk about those experiences, too. Then I was fortunate to land myself back in the classroom…even if it was virtual…where I talk about writing all the time. SO, hopefully you see where this is headed…I find that I spend a lot of time talking about writing so much that I don’t feel like blogging about it too much. Yeah, I’ll do it some when something really calls out to me that needs sayin’, but I spend so much of my time talking about writing that I’m not motivated to blog about it. I know that’ll irk some of you who come here for pearls of writing wisdom…but I’ll apologize to both of you profusely!

So…there it is. And see, I’ve broken yet another rule in that this blog is 521 words.

Leave a comment

Filed under family, General, writing

The Next Big Thing Blog Hop part deux

Thanks for making it back to part two of my participation in The Next Big Thing Blog Hop.

What is a blog hop? Basically, it’s a way that readers can discover new authors, because with bookstores closing and publishers not promoting new authors as much, we need to find a way to introduce readers to authors they may not see in their local bookstore.

Here you have the chance to find many new authors. You’ll find information about me, my blog, and my book – Buying Time. But that’s not all! Click on the links at the bottom to other authors you might like to check out—they’re picked out by me!

I’d like to thank my friend and colleague, author Tom Lucas for tagging me to participate. Click this link to find out about his book, Leather to the Corinthians, and show him some internet love by leaving a snarky comment! http://readtomlucas.com/

In this particular hop, I and my fellow authors, in their respective blogs, have answered 10 questions where you get to learn about our current work as well as some insights into our process, from characters and inspirations to plotting and cover decisions. I hope you enjoy it!

Please feel free to comment and share your thoughts and questions. Here is my Next Big Thing!

1: What is the title of your book? Buying Time

2: Where did the idea come from for the book? It’s loosely based on a short story with the same title that I wrote back in my college days about a time traveling time salesman.

3: What genre does your book come under? Contemporary fiction. I tried calling it sci-fi for a bit…but a few hard core sci-fi readers complained there wasn’t enough sci-fi in the book…and they’re probably right. The sci-fi elements are very secondary to the story, which also has elements of faith and romance (yeah, I know—not exactly sure how that happened!).

4: Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition? This was actually probably the hardest question to answer because I didn’t visually actors when I wrote this (I sometimes do that when I write, but not for this work). I’d choose Alan Rickman to play Big Ben, the time salesman; Milo Ventimiglia as Tom Morgan; David Duchovny as Larry Pace; Sandra Bullock at Grace Pace.

5: What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? Two completely different men are offered an opportunity to redo a part of their life. (One-sentences are hard!)

6: Is your book self-published, published by an independent publisher, or represented by an agency? Small indy publisher out of Oxford, Miss.

7: How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript? About two years just for the first draft. After two polish and clean up edit rounds by me, I sent the word out to about a dozen first readers who gave me feedback. I went back in for a very healthy revision based on the collected notes I’d received. The entire process took about three years. Way too long, in my opinion.

8: How did the cover come about? I had a basic idea for the cover and communicated that to the designer, Emily Y. Kanalz who then proceeded to do a bang-up job on the final product. I love what she did!

9: Who or what inspired you to write this book? Lots of things combined, really. I love time travel stories (Buying Time is NOT a time travel story) and alternate histories. I also think, given the chance, that many of us would revisit some part of our life to fix it or do it differently. This story came about as a result of all those ideas colliding!

10: What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest? Like most of my work, it’s set in the South…the setting I use is the area of Florence, Alabama.

Below you will find authors who will be joining me by blog, next Wednesday. Do be sure to bookmark and add them to your calendars for updates and exciting developments.

Sidney Williams: http://sidneywilliams.blogspot.com

Sean Taylor: http://seanhtaylor.blogspot.com

Aaron Drown: www.achristopherdrown.com

Happy Writing and Reading

Leave a comment

Filed under General, writing