R. C. Bray @audbks will join me for radio interview with host and author @SEvanTownsend #books #author #interview #audiobooks

Speculative Fiction CantinaI just got word this morning that Audie Award winning narrator R. C. Bray will be joining me for my interview with Mr. Townsend at the Speculative Fiction Cantina on August 25th, 6 pm PST.  Bray will be saving my sorry ass by performing the live reading of my novel Commune Book One.  This is profoundly good news as far as I’m concerned.  You know how they have the expression, “He has a face made for radio”?  Well, I have a voice made for writing…

I will be doing a radio interview with host and author @SEvanTownsend #books #author #interview

Speculative Fiction CantinaThe good people at The Speculative Fiction Cantina have booked me for an hour long interview on August 25th, 6 PM Eastern Time (3 PM Pacific).  We’ll be discussing my book(s), writing in general, and any other thing that happens to come up.

The show is hosted by S. Evan Townsend, a gifted and well regarded author in the sci-fi/fiction arena.

Mark your calendars, my friends 🙂

Commune Book One Now Available at Barnes and Noble #postapocalypse #ebook #adventure #fiction

Commune Book One Preview

Click to purchase at Barnes and Noble!

For all of you lovelies out there who don’t dig on Amazon or Kobo but partake of the B&N Nook…ocity?  Nookitude?  Nookchuckus?

I don’t know where I just went, there.  Anyway, if you have a Nook, you too can come escape into my little slice of unheaven.  Enjoy and thank you all.

Josh

Commune Book One: A Thinking Reader’s Post Apocalypse #books #reading #postapocalypse

Progress on Commune Book Two is banging along at a fantastic pace!  I’m already one third of the way finished (or maybe a little less depending on what the total length ends up being; it feels like it may be a bit longer than the first book right now).  It would be really friggin’ cool if I had it ready to publish around the time the production of Book One’s audio book is finished.

Commune Book One Preview

Click the Book for a Free Preview!

In the meantime, the first book calls out to all you fans of the post apocalypse genre.  For any who enjoy dreaming about how you would fair in a total societal breakdown or who wonder about your chances of surviving a world suddenly made lawless and hostile; for any preppers who fancy themselves ready for the day the lights go out; for any military (either active service or veterans) who would view the situation as just another day at the office: this series of books is my little love letter to all of you (kiss!).  Click the image of the book cover for a free preview!  You can grab a copy in both ebook and paperback formats.

See what other readers are saying about Commune Book One!

Commune Book One Audio Book to be Performed by R. C. Bray

I have just signed a deal to have my novel produced as an audio book.

It’s going to be performed by, and I shit you NOT: R.C. Bray. For those of you unfamiliar with the world of audio books, Bray is basically Robert Deniro, Marlon Brando, and Robin Williams all in one. His narration of Andy Weir’s The Martian is what helped to sky rocket the book to such a level of success that it was made into a major Hollywood film (that and Weir’s amazing talents as a story teller, anyway).

Let me tell you something: it takes an awful god damned lot to humble me but I’m absolutely humbled right now by Bob’s enthusiasm and belief in my work. If you had told me at any point that one of the industry’s most talented, respected, and beloved narrators wanted to perform my very first novel only a friggin’ week after it was published, I would have told you to grow the hell up. This is the kind of thing you dream about after slogging through years of obscurity.

I have no words for this.

Commune Book One is currently available in ebook and paperback on Amazon and Kobo.  I’ll provide further details on the audio book production as I get them.

Commune Book One is now Available on Kobo!

For those of you who prefer Kobo over Amazon, Commune Book One is now available as an ebook.  Click here to get you copy now!

For those of you who have already gotten a copy over at Amazon, thank you so much!  I am both humbled and gratified that you’ve decided to come spend a little time in my world.  I look forward to seeing you in books two and three.

For those of you stumbling on my novel for the first time, I’ll offer the following details (outside of the standard plot synopsis, which you can read on the purchase pages for the book):

What I ended up writing was a zombie story without all the zombies.  I’m a big fan of the post apocalypse survival genre and a lot of my favorite works in the arena involve zombies.  That being said, I didn’t want to write another zombie book.  Even in those books that do involve the zombies (those that I enjoy, anyway), the zombies are only really a threat for so long before such encounters become routine.  When zombies become normal, the real and more extreme danger always presents itself: other humans.  To my mind, the most fascinating subject matter is explored when the story starts dealing with competition between surviving communities for limited resources and how they choose to behave in these situations.  In my book, I just wanted to skip the zombie part altogether and dive right in to dealing with who I believe have the potential to be the scariest, most threatening monsters: us.

When I wrote this book, I was looking (in part) to create a story that veers away from a lot of the standard tropes that I’ve been seeing in the genre (everyone always turns into opportunistic savages, the military is evil, and so on).

There are definitely evil people in this story but I wanted to explore the idea that there is a world of difference between your basic, boring, mustache-twirling evil and a person who is basically decent but focused only on looking out for himself.  One of the primary themes I work on is that it’s very likely easier and safer in the short term to go “every man for himself”, however you end up actively creating a world in which you wouldn’t want to live.  The characters in the story struggle with this concept, having to establish a balance between preservation of self and preservation of humanity.

Additionally, the story is delivered in the form of a first person narrative from people who may not necessarily want you to know every little thing about them.  My intent is that, for some of the characters, you learn more about what makes them tick from what they don’t say rather than what they do…

Calling all Book Reviewers!!! (Book Giveaway Inside)

Fellow Bloggers: See the bottom of this post where I promise to go out to your various sites and re-blog your content!  This is not a shallow attempt to get your money (it’s more of a shallow attempt to get your eyeballs).

So, I’m starting to get a sense of what helps to make things happen in the Independent Publishing world and the name of the game appears to be: Community.

Fortuitous, that.

I’ve recently been in contact with another relatively new author named Ken Wheeler who has taken a dive down the rabbit hole about a year and a half earlier than me (Ken is a genuinely cool guy; check his stuff out at http://kewhee.wordpress.com).  He confirms what I’ve already begun to suspect: In order to get your book noticed, people need to notice your book.  In a lot of cases, people want you to pay them to notice your book.

This is just a personal thing (if paying for a book review has worked for you in the past, I’m glad to hear it went well – I want any indie author to succeed if he or she can) but paying for a review of a book that I wrote just rubs me the wrong way.  I’m not saying that it is actually wrong; I’m a total newb.  I have no idea about the way this industry runs.  You’ll excuse me, though, if I note that there seems to be equal parts helpful people and parasitic services.  Wading through all that gets a little hairy.

I’m not saying I won’t ever pay for a review in the future; I don’t want to rule that out (this activity may be totally reasonable and fruitful).  But right now, I want a real review.  I want to know what real readers think, not just folks that I’m throwing money at.

So here’s the deal: if you’d be interested in writing a review for my novel Commune: Book One, go to my Contact page right now and let me know.  I’ll work with you to get a free copy into your hands, whether that’s an e-book download to your device, a PDF copy mailed straight over to your inbox, or whatever else we can think of.

The first five people to put a review for my novel up on both Amazon and GoodReads gets a signed paperback of the Commune: Book One novel delivered to the mailing address of their choice.  The review between the two sites doesn’t have to be unique; you can just write it all up in a separate document and then paste it to both locations for all I care.  I only require that the review meets the following criteria:

  • Minimum 500 word length (no good just rating it with some stars, you need to write something).
  • No fake reviews saying how badass it was, please.  List specific details from the story so that it is clear you read it.
  • The review must be honest.  I’m not looking for a bunch of five-star cheerleaders.  If you think the book is only three stars, that’s what you put.  If you think it’s worth of only 1, give it that (if you still want a signed copy after giving only 1 star, I’ll still send it to you, assuming all other criteria are satisfied).

Finally, whether you take me up on this or not, could you help a brother out and share this along?  If you’re reading this on Facebook, share the page and post to all your friends and ask them to forward it as well.  If you’ve hit this page via wordpress, please re-blog it to your followers.

In fact, if you do re-blog this post to your followers, I’m going straight to your page, finding stuff that I like there, and will re-blog your content back over here at my page.

Let’s get a snowball rolling!

Commune: Book 1 is Available for Purchase on Amazon!

Back in January, I had written some 89 page’s worth of a story that had been banging around in my head for roughly a year.  I had no idea if I was going to finish the thing as the only book I had written before that was a sub-200 page guide on guitar making.  As far as I knew at the time, this whole thing was a lark and might not actually go anywhere.

Well, now it’s March 30th, the damned thing is published on Amazon, and book 2 of the series is well under way.

You can purchase your copy at this link, by the way 🙂

This has all been a bit “out of left field” for me.  I’m an engineer.  I work in the aerospace business.  I do not write novels.  Ah, me.  Gene Wolfe, my favorite author of all time, had a background in engineering.  I suppose this is a hopeful sign.

I’ll wager that step 2 is figuring out how to get some attention for this.  I’ll see what I can do about beating bushes.  Meanwhile, if you are one who is interested in the book or me as an author in any regard (be it review, interview, or you just want to drop me a line), feel free to send me a message on my contact page.  I’m a relative nobody, which means I’m guaranteed to respond as long as you’re not spam 🙂

-Josh

Book 1 Progress Update

Advanced copies have been sent out for review and feedback is beginning to trickle in.  My wife has already played a major role in helping to clean up plot holes and narrative style so I’m feeling pretty good about where things are at.  Thankfully, the plot holes that have been uncovered so far are due to a lack of clarification on my part rather than being the result of use cases that had just flat out never occurred to me.  The former is easy to fix with more words; the latter could constitute the need for major revision.

From the admin side of things, I’m currently jumping through those hoops that Amazon requires before they’ll allow me to publish on their site, which is fine.  There’s this whole world to publishing of which I was unaware until I actually started trying to do it – I’ve since learned that writing a good story is the easiest part of the entire process.  Actually getting the damned thing published is like trying to pull the teeth from a baboon with your bare hands while driving a Buick down an unpaved mountainside, all while that baboon’s family flings poop at you.  The good news for me is that by going through Amazon, I can at least get a legal entity to drive the Buick for me so I can focus on not getting killed by an enraged primate.

Getting close…