Writing Unshackled

Current Draft of Book Cover
Current Draft of Book Cover – Copyright 2015 M. Q. Allen

Unplanned though it was, I ended up mostly dropping my blog and my fiction writing in 2014.

The immediate cause was a pile of submissions to contests and various short story markets. While I’m pretty good these days about shrugging off an individual rejection, getting so much out there at the end of 2013 left me on edge and not interested in writing while I waited to see how things went. Plus, while writing has been a major focus for me for the last four years, I don’t have too much to show for it, so the break proved a good time to take a breather and assess where I’m going with my writing career.

The main outcome of said break? It became clear I love to write and don’t want to stop. Next realization? I hate the chore of researching, submitting and tracking agents and markets, and that’s without doing anywhere near as much of it as I should have. Waiting for a response? Not so good at that, either. Final bit: I do want my stuff to be read.

Color map (there will be a black and white version in the eBook)
Color map (there will be a black and white version in the eBook) – Copyright 2015 M. Q. Allen

Know Thyself was good advice 2500 years ago and it’s still good advice now. Realizing the above and finding out that Amazon’s Kindle Direct is free and a cover is less than I thought, I’ve decided not to submit any more stories for now and just self-publish. To that end, I’ve got the cover you see here, a blurb in progress (feel free to comment on it here) and a professional copy-edit. I even dusted off Campaign Cartographer to update my map. It’s going to be eBook only so I’m not going to get an ISBN number and I’ll file for copyright after it goes live.

So the plan now is to publish Prince of Leaf and Stone by March at the latest, ready Shadow of the Archons for publication later this year followed by a collection of my short stories.

This plan focuses on keeping me writing (which I enjoy) and not worrying about financial success, which seems like a long shot no matter which path I pursue. So, put another way, why worry about the money too much? Meanwhile, I’ll quietly build up a portfolio.

Let me know what you think of the cover.

Log-jam broken. Writing full speed ahead!

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9 thoughts on “Writing Unshackled

  1. Ditto what Randy said. I like the cover illustration (great stuff), but the font is hard to read when the image is small.

    This is crazy ambitious but you go! Make sure to blog/announce when it comes out. 🙂

  2. It sounds exciting, but perhaps a bit scary. I’d love to know more on what the book is about. And for what it’s worth, I think the font would be ok if it was in a contrasting color. Right now the black letters blend with the black branches nearby.

    Good luck. I’ll look forward to hearing about your progress.

    1. Thanks! I’ll post something when it launches. I think the easiest thing to do is use a fuller font. I did find this one after researching fonts but it probably is more suited for a cleaner background.

      I thought you had already been through this process yourself? That was one of my motivations for doing this 🙂

      1. I’m with a small press. I get no advance, but a 50% royalty on actual sales. Sky Warrior provides the editor, cover art and actual production of e-books. I don’t feel like I’m out on a limb by myself.

        But don’t let that stop you from doing things your way! Ultimately, that’s the best route for any artist.

  3. I’m sorry; I thought it was a self-publish. I guess I should have checked the front-matter more carefully but on an e-book, it’s easy to miss that. Well, you still inspired me, inadvertently though it may have been 🙂

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