June 12th, 2016, I uploaded 43 Seconds to Kindle Direct Publishing and clicked the submit button. One hour later it was live. Since then, I've published Signal Loss, Aero One, Hayden's World Shorts,and Erebus. When I started, I recall reading many self-publisher's blog posts about how their journey unfurled. I thought I'd share mine after the first year.
Sarah pushes the Pintail’s flight stick forward and the aquamarine sky rolls away. Below, the cloud deck is an impossible swirl of cinnamon and gold with pockets of flickering lightning. Thunder rumbles in bursts, its audio out of sync with the light show. Through the cockpit windows great banded rings fade into the horizon and the scale of it is almost too much to take in at once. Motion catches her eye as a silver glimmer carves a vapor trail across the sky. It changes course, the vapor trail bending, then corkscrews a white spiral before matching her altitude. Saturn’s moons are an audience of bright stars behind it.
“Well, now you’re just showing off,” Sarah says to her helmet mic.
There’s a popular meme which states “When I was a kid, I thought quicksand was going to be a much bigger problem than it really is.” Thinking back, there’s a whole host of things which always happened in my favorite 80s shows that never materialized into problems in my future adult life.
Jia’s stomach burns and she jolts awake. She flails against the suffocation as if she can beat it away with her own two hands. Tears well in a weightless film across her eyelids and she scrubs the back of one hand across her face while the other fumbles with the harness release. Her head throbs. When she sets her hand to the site of the pain, it returns sticky and red. Thoughts spark and fizzle in an overlapping jumble of competing primal urges. Air. She needs air.
Kyan Anders drifted in a room brimming with a hundred billion stars. Radiant golds spanned familiar constellations, but it was what lay between the stars that captured his attention. Smudges of galaxies against ebony sky. Glowing stellar lanes dusted with rose. Objects no man could see from Earth, but here they were impossible to miss. It was like seeing, truly seeing, for the first time.
James Hayden smiled as his dream died. It was the polished, charismatic smile that had glossed the feeds of Frontier and Momentum. In the silence he could hear the soft pulse of Hayden-Pratt’s logo spinning on the wall behind him. He paused and gripped the podium. A room full of tuxedos and gowns looked back.
Today my wife drove by a Wendy's and found herself remembering a true story I once told her. When she mentioned it at dinner, I had an urge to put pen to paper. Usually I write fiction, but sometimes it's fun just to tell a silly story about something that happened long, long ago
In Last Stand, Larson references an organization of radicals. I began fleshing out details of what they're trying to accomplish and how they might operate. Miyu is a character concept for this. This short contains no spoilers and can be read independent of the other works.
Recently I tested the Facebook Boost Post button, despite the internet telling me never to press it, and, not surprisingly the only effect it generated was vacuuming a ten dollar bill out of my wallet.
In Signal Loss, Kyan Anders is a data runner. I envisioned this as the data equivalent of the Planet Fitness commercial, "I lift things up and put them down." So, what exactly is a data runner, and why would it be necessary in the future?
If you've stumbled upon my blog, then, congrats, you've found bonus story content! If you haven't read Signal Loss yet, stop, get a copy (seriously, it's only 99 cents), then read the rest of this post. Otherwise you'll be exposed to some major plot spoilers Here's a few excerpts and commentary from Signal Loss.
If you've seen the movie Gentleman Broncos, the opening credits feature a montage of pulp sci-fi covers. You know the type - alien tentacles wrapping around an alarmed female astronaut while a crewman pulls out a blaster. You can actually see the brush strokes in the paint.
Last week I posted a book trailer for 43 Seconds on my Facebook page. You may have noticed an enticing "Boost Post" button sits at the bottom of your page posts. I've always ignored it. But there it sat, calling to me like a siren leading a sailor to rocks.
I decided to self-publish 43 Seconds on Kindle Direct Publishing because I loved the idea of owning the project start to finish. KDP is remakably easy to use. It’s really just a few screens of selections, followed by pushing the “publish” button.