Earlier this week my friend and author of the outstanding Lovecraftian urban fantasy series The Bell Forging Cycle, K.M. Alexander, interviewed me for the inaugural installment of his author interview series Prose Palaver. We took a deep dive into my process while writing RADIO, how living abroad and travel influenced my writing, some literary, musical, and mythological influences for the story, and more. Click below to check it out.

Now that I’m in the throws of edits from the amazing Amanda J. Spedding at Phoenix Editing, it’s time to make the announcement.

RADIO, my urban fantasy noir novel, will be self published and will be out in the spring of 2020.

RADIO is set in 1920’s Paris, where a god is trapped in the opium riddled body of a jazz musician and must stop others like him from weaponizing the religious imagery they’ve milked for millennia.

I’ve toyed with the idea of self publishing my work for a few years now but was always unsure if it was the right decision to make. After my time at Dublin Worldcon 2019 soaking in as much information as I could, I was certain that self publishing was exactly what I needed to do.

So, what’s next. Well, I’ll continue to grind away at my editors notes, continue work with my cover designer, and spend the next several months polishing my word-baby to a shine (don’t worry, the cover will absolutely be matte).

Stay tuned for updates, sneak peaks, and more. See you all this spring!

I really love beta reading.

Yes, it’s work. Yes, it’s time consuming. Yes, it can be stressful. Telling your friend, family member, or acquaintance that they’ve made mistakes is tough. The thing is, it’s all worth it. Why? Because beta readers are better writers.

I’m currently beta reading my eighth book. These eight have come from three different authors, each with their own unique style, in disparate genres, and I have learned from them all. I am better for having done the work and the reason for that is distance.

The Benefit of Distance

“Practice makes perfect,” but we all know how blinded we can become to our own work. The proper phrase should be, “accurate practice makes perfect,” and it’s hard to be accurate after the umpteenth pass through your own manuscript. “We’re too close Goose, we’re switching to guns,” or rather, someone else’s work.

Reading your buddy’s stuff is beneficial because there’s a distance there. When we flex our critique muscles on someone else’s work, it separates our abilities as writers and our abilities as analysts. We can practice these skills, accurately, with out all of the baggage we bring with us into our own writing. With each successive book I’ve beta read, I’ve honed my skills and after each book, I’m able to slice through my own work with more precision.

How to Beta Read

The first rule of beta reading is that you are not proofreading. The second rule of beta reading is that you are not proof reading. (more…)