LINK TO LARGER IMAGE HERE: My Google Drive
A small teaser!
Community College Hijinks, a lighthearted comic strip that takes place during the Fall semester (when everyone is still alive!), will be posted here on Thursday, March 29th, and then every other Thursday after that! This is a project I’m working on with artist Gloves Belanger, and both of us are very excited about it!
Each strip will be four panels. This is just the first panel of Strip #001. Gloves and I already have four strips completed, so at least that many will be posted. Whether or not we keep going depends a lot on reader interest and feedback, so if you enjoy it, please leave a comment!
Some folks asked me why I created the new Reader Appreciation Group two weeks ago, considering that I had spent two years building a reader email group with communitycollegehero.com. Well, there are many reasons, and I wanted to explain my thought process.
First, I wanted to create a new website that introduced readers to ME as opposed to introducing them to my CONTENT. I’ve been listening to a lot of marketing podcasts recently, including the very funny guys on the Novel Marketing podcast. They focus almost entirely on marketing for fiction writers, and I’ve been obsessed with them in recent weeks. Anyway, one of their basic principles is that authors should brand themselves and not hide behind their stories. So I took the plunge and created a new website with a new email account. If you’re interested in learning more about marketing your fiction, check the Novel Marketing guys out here. So anyway, since I was creating a new website, a new email group was needed.
(*Short aside; building www.fictionbyericmoser.com with WordPress was about a million times more fun and intuitive than was building the old CCH site. I’ll probably post more about the process of building this site, but for now, I’ll stay focused on the new Reader Appreciation Group.)
Second, I discovered MailChimp and it was like the clouds parted. Ahhhhhh! (sound of clouds parting) MailChimp makes managing an email list SO much easier! For example, for over two years with the CCH email account, I had manually collected emails, but I could never tell how many people actually opened them. I didn’t know if the messages were even reaching anyone. I also couldn’t provide an unsubscribe button for recipients, although no one ever asked to be unsubscribed. I was also sending the emails by blind carbon copying the recipients, and the guys on Novel Marketing said that is the WORST way to send emails, because it will send most emails to spam. So I suspect very few messages were actually reaching anyone.
Third, I wanted to refocus on my READERS, not ME. I have probably fallen into the trap of just talking about myself and my projects, which is not the best way to show readers my appreciation for their support. So this gives me a chance to shift gears and provide more reader-friendly content.
I’ll send the first Reader Appreciation Group message this weekend!
Over the past few weeks, I have been designing an interactive version of Talon City as I continue to write the “regular” version. I figure for roughly 20% more work, I can create the story in both formats, so why not?
I am seeking a small group of readers (maybe 5 or 6) to give feedback over the next 2-3 months, especially on the interactive version of the story (which will include most, if not all, of the content of the “regular” version.) I really hope to have the story, at least the draft, done by June.
The interactive version leans more story than game, meaning the central plot pushes the action, but you still get to make decisions for not one, but three, different characters as they pursue different goals based on these decisions. That being said, it’s not told in second person POV (“you”), and the reader does not create their own protagonist, unlike most other Hosted Games, so if you’re heavily into roleplaying a character, this might not be your cup of tea. We can still be friends though!
The interactive version is told in third-person POV, just like the “regular” version of the story, but you get to guide the actions of:
Test out the first three chapters HERE. (about 6,000 words)
After reading it, if you enjoy the story and want to help me test, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org!
I am looking for folks who REALLY like to read and border on ‘story nerds.’ You know, folks who love to analyze stories, look for themes, plot holes, etc. Those are my peeps! Also, if you like low fantasy or legal thrillers (this marries the two), you might be my target audience.
I’ll mostly be looking for “high-level” feedback on topics like pacing, setting, prose, characterization, plot holes, etc. I want the story to be fast paced, thrilling, and intense, and maybe you can help me deliver!
CCH2 has been submitted to the publisher. It is currently in the copy edit phase. This is an important step in making the text as clean as possible.
The artist is tackling the cover while the text is being edited. She has already created four awesome interior covers for CCH2, and those are ready to go! I expect the cover to be finished in the next two weeks.
No release date is set yet, but I will let you know as soon as that happens!
Thanks so much for your patience!
Have a Specktacular day!
I will rarely pitch my CCH merchandise like this, but Redbubble has a SALE today; 20% off EVERYTHING!
The code at checkout is TWENTY20
Link is here!
I have little control over pricing the merchandise, as my profit margin is already slim, so when the vendor runs a good sale, I feel like I should mention it to possible save people money. Redbubble runs these 20% sales from time to time, but they pop up with short notice, and it’s hard to spread the word.
I’m over 10,000 words into my draft of Talon City, a fantasy legal thriller that represents my first stab at a traditional novel.
My elevator pitch is, “Think John Grisham meets the Jungle Book meets the Purge!”
To stay on track for self-publication by the end of 2018, I need to keep on schedule:
If I can help anyone learn the ropes of self-publishing, I would be happy to do that! Look for more updates as I educate myself about the process.
Before you pick up Community College Hero 2: Knowledge is Power (set to be published in the first half of 2018), catch up with Stoic on a winter evening taking place between the events of Community College Hero and Community College Hero 2.
This 3,000-word traditional short story follows Stoic around the city of Speck, Nebraska, after her classmates have all left for Winter Break. Find out what dramatic event happens this night that leads Stoic to make a critical decision about her future.
To get this FREE short story, sign up for my NEW Reader Appreciation Group by clicking HERE.