Friday, February 28, 2014

The Game On Chronicles: Publication!

Game On is now live on Amazon's website!

This is the end stage of work on an eBook. The story is finished and is uploaded to Amazon—just waiting for you to purchase and review (/shamelessplug).

But now I have to switch modes from writing to marketing. It's time to get the word out! Announcements on Twitter and Facebook. Updating GoodReads. Blogging. Is there anything I'm missing? Probably.

I'd like to relax a little bit after wrapping up a big project, but there's no time for that now. I still have to work on my story for the Hockey Fights Cancer anthology, which will be released in just a few months. Besides that, I have some other ideas to open my writings up to a bigger audience. And of course, I already have plenty of ideas about my fourth novel. There's a teaser at the end of Game On for this fourth book, which I'm already excited about. Check it out and let me know what you think!

In other news, today's the last day to get a copy of Play the Man for free. This is the last free promotion I have planned, so now's the chance to score your free copy!

I hope you all have a good weekend! I'm going to spend it typing away....

Monday, February 24, 2014

FREE: Play the Man

That's right, Play the Man is free right now on Amazon! And it will be until Friday, February 28, which is the release date of Game On.

Want a free advance copy of Game On before Friday? Contact me, and I'll send you an ARC.

Happy reading!

Jay

Thursday, February 20, 2014

More Good News!

I'm very happy to announce that I will be published in anthology of hockey romance compiled to raise money for Hockey Fights Cancer!

I'm really very happy to be included with the likes of Toni Aleo, Cassandra Carr, and V. L. Locey, (who you may have checked out during the Hottie Hockey Hunks Blog Hop), among others like Bianca Sommerland, Nicki Worrell and more!

The as yet unnamed anthology will be released in April, and proceeds will be donated to Hockey Fights Cancer, which I'm sure we can all agree is a great charity. My paternal grandfather succumbed to lung cancer, and my maternal grandfather is currently undergoing treatment for bladder cancer. Needless to say, this is a cause that is very important to me.

My submission is the short story A Valuable Trade, a former Quickie, which will be adapted for publication in the anthology.

Of course, I'll keep everyone in the loop once publication nears!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

The Game On Chronicles: Draft Completed

Last night, I finished the draft of Game On. Thirty chapters are written. For me, writing is the hardest part. Getting my ideas out of my head and into a tangible form takes a lot of time and effort. And tons of thinking, scheming, and daydreaming.

I said in a previous Chronicle that I don't know how a story will end until after I write the ending. That's so true; I knew that my main character Audrey would return home for Christmas, and that's when the story would end in the timeline of events. But it wasn't until I got to the final scene that I felt the closure I needed to feel to know that the story was over.

So, the writing's finished. But what does that mean for a story?

It means there's more work to be done!

A draft must be turned into a final copy suitable for publication (and for a publication date to be calculated), which requires the following steps:
  1. Editing
  2. Proofreading
  3. Formatting for eBook Publication
  4. Cover Designing
For those of you who keep up with the Chronicles, the cover for the Game On eBook is finished. So that's one less thing to worry about.

Editing is about making sure the story is the best that it can be, that the plot and characters are exciting and believable, and that reading the story will be enjoyable for those who buy it. The editing process is finished. Mel Ting has been checking over each chapter as I have completed it. Out of 30 chapters, 26 have been edited. So I just have to implement the edits for chapters 27-30. That means I have some rewriting to do, so this may take up to several hours of time to complete.

Once that is complete, the entire document needs to be proofread for errors such as typos, misspellings, and anything that may have been missed the first few times around. Proofreading is all about the technical details; it's polishing the story to perfection (er, as close to that as possible). I proofread as I write, but it's hard for a writer to always catch her own mistakes.

Then it's time to format the story. This will make the eBook look like an eBook when it's uploaded to Amazon and then downloaded by a buyer. To save time at this stage, I've been writing out my story in publication format. I have the title page, copyright page, author page, etc. already plugged in, and the text is set up for conversion. There's even a little teaser for what will be my next full-length novel....

All that to say, all I have to do is finish the editing process and then proofread again. And Game On will be finished!

Now that I'm close to being ready to publish, I've set the publication date: February 28. Ten days and counting!

I know this post is long, and I'm hoping you're still with me. And if you are, you're in luck! I'm going to distribute advanced reading copies (ARCs) to any interested fans! Just leave me a comment with your contact info, and I'll be happy to send you an ARC when the final version is completed, before it publishes on the 28th! All I ask is that, if you enjoy the story, please review the eBook on Amazon and/or Goodreads to help spread the word. Reviews for eBooks are like comments on blogs.... Authors live for the feedback!

Oh, yeah, and I created a Facebook page. So, if you like me, why not Like me?

I've got big news coming up, too, that I'm very excited about. Stay tuned for that!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

The Game On Chronicles: Back Cover Copy

As a story nears completion, and I finally have a clear idea of everything the story is supposed to tell, then it's time to start thinking about the "blurb." In publishing terms, this is called back cover copy, because it's the teaser that gets printed on the—you guessed it!—back cover.

Writing this is so hard! It's supposed to be a teaser. So this is what I typed up:


Audrey Hunt hopes to make her mark on the world. Armed with her masters in broadcast journalism, she applies for a job that would allow her to do just that but instead finds herself in Columbus, Ohio, covering the NHL’s Blue Jackets. At first, she thinks that the job is a joke; however, she quickly discovers that there’s more to hockey than scoring goals and more to sports reporting than talking stats. With the support of the players on the team—including lots of help from the superstar captain Nathan Fox—Audrey searches for her niche as a sports journalist for Ohio Spots Network and finds out more about herself along the way.

Let me know what you think. Does this make you want to read Game On?

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

The Game On Chronicles: When the End's in Sight...

It's been about two months since I've updated on my progress of my latest novel, Game On. It's hard to talk about it when I don't exactly how the story is going to end, or when I'll actually wrap it up.

Endings make the story. Endings are the story; everything that happens is designed that way, solely to lead up to the end. The reader's satisfaction depends on how the story wraps up. Has this ever happened to you: you're reading a story or watching a movie, and everything's rolling on just fine, until you get to the ending and bam! The whole plot is ruined by a crappy ending, and instead of a feeling of resolve, you only feel disappointment.

That's why endings are so hard for a writer. Beginnings are the fun part; you get to create a whole new world! Middles are the interesting part, because you get to know your characters and investigate their lives and personalities. But endings... Sometimes, I feel like I don't write the endings. They happen entirely on their own.

I know that I'm getting close to the end. Right now, I'm working on Chapter 29, and the story should only run a few more chapters after that. The exact events yet to occur still aren't crystal clear, but I at least have a vague idea. But that's the way that story writing works for me: I have a general sense of what should and will happen (or what I want to happen, because sometimes those are very different things!), but it's not until I actually put the words on the computer screen that the details and specifics emerge.

My favorite stories don't wrap up every tiny detail in a pretty bow. I like some open-endedness. That lets my imagination fill in some of the blanks. The stories that I'm drawn to are ones that make me think. I try to do the same with the stories that write. Those who have read some of my stories in the past know that I'm not a fan of epilogues, for that very reason. The hardest part about a satisfactory ending, for me, is balancing out the conclusions that get set in stone and the ones that are left open for interpretation.

These are the thoughts that weigh on my mind as I begin the end of Game On.