I am now splitting most of my week between home with my two kids and the hospital with my other son, Sam, who is fighting leukemia. This in turn has led to a split in my writing schedule/musing/energy. When I am at home, I've been working on the Pied Piper sequel, which if the current schedule holds will hit end of May/early June. Which is good, as there will not be much of a delay in the initial release date. At the hospital, things are a bit different. I think about different things, become inspired by different things, and have found it hard to focus on my more "normal" projects. And so on my down time, I found I was wanting to write something different. It's become what I call the Side Project. My iFiction! alum, Everette Bell, has released 3 episodes (so far) of a zombie serial on his blog to be read for absolutely FREE. I was supposed to follow suit after the Piper sequel and during the production of Black Rain 3. But I couldn't wait. This story had been brewing for quite a while and I decided if I wasn't going to write the "normal" stuff while at the hospital, or not sleeping, or just being antsy, I would just write this as my entry into the serial format. Welcome to WORLDBREAKER. It is a fantasy epic. I am trying to keep it all ages. And it is inspired by my son and what he is going through. Maybe I shouldn't write something so close to home, but c'mon, I'm a writer. I write what I know. Read the first episode for FREE here. I am shooting for releasing one episode a month, but I'm sure with our busy schedule it will be up and down. I could very well get 2 episodes out in a month, or no episodes in a month. But it will remain FREE for the duration, and then I will delete the site and release a collection on Amazon. So get it while the getting's good. It's an experiment as much as anything. I am finding it very easy to write. Fantasy is where my true inspiration lies. I hope you enjoy it.
BLOOD WILL RUN had a nice debut. Make sure to grab a copy if you haven't yet. If you want to keep up to date with new releases and WORLDBREAKER episodes, join the mailing list above or like me on FACEBOOK. Also above.
I hope to have good news on the Pied Piper 2 release as we get closer. And then it's Black Rain 3 for the summer. (I have a feeling Duke will be a nice place to write a huge novel.)
BLOOD WILL RUN has hit the feed! The first story arc in the thrilling crime series, PROVIDENCE TALES, marks my first extended foray into the genre. You could argue that BOOM or Punchy were the first real explorations of crime/thriller, especially the latter. Here's the blurb and the link. Oh, and it's FREE FREE FREE until Wednesday.
After years at war, a truce has finally been negotiated between rival crime organizations, the Fanellis and the East Side Regulars.
Drew is the Cleaner, one of the East Side's best contract killers. But when he botches a job for Ricky Fanelli, the young hothead and future heir to the Fanelli empire, Ricky wants retribution and Drew dead.
East Side has no choice but to let Drew go or end the truce. Trying to escape the city, Drew is forced back into a deadly showdown with Ricky.
Two men. One city.
Welcome to Providence. The city where money is king and blood will run.
Michael Whetzel (Pied Piper of the Undead, The Black Rain Journals
) brings his unique vision to the crime genre. BLOOD WILL RUN is the first story arc in the series, Providence Tales.
Rated R for graphic language, graphic violence, guns, booze and broads.BLOOD WILL RUN Sam started chemo on Saturday. He has a new drug that he is taking that has some serious risk and side effects. It was a but rough but we got through it and he was feeling WAY better Saturday night. Today, the rest of the family gets tested to see if we are viable candidates to donate marrow. If you want to follow Sam's progress and leave him some encouraging words, we started a Facebook page here. Already in one day, he is on his way to 400 likes. The Pied Piper of the Undead sequel is next on the horizon. I am staying on top of writing as it really helps point my mind in other directions instead of on What ifs and Whys.
Plus, we need the added income. I've had mild to moderate success with the books, averaging 100+ books sold a month. It's a nice number but not enough to really pay any bills. The more books I have out, the more income I can bring in and maybe something gets that lucky break. I never want it to be about money. However, it is pretty important right now. The other small thing that is in development is another serial. I am following Everette Bell's example in CORA and will be offering a serial for free on the website. It is fantasy and will be all ages. I needed something to fill in the time at night when sleep eludes and thoughts are racing. Pied Piper 2 isn't enough. So WORLDBREAKER will be here soon. That's it for now. Thank you for your kind words and p
Well....it is pretty amazing how everything can change in a span of a few hours.
Last July, I announced a suspension of projects as we learned my 12 year old son, Sam, was diagnosed with Leukemia. He underwent treatment and was in remission. He started the last stage of of his treatment a month ago. We were smooth sailing.
Yesterday, I got a call from his doctor with his latest blood tests. Sam has relapsed. His cancer is back and he will have to start treatment again.
The kicker is once returned to remission, he will need a bone marrow transplant.
We are shocked by this. Here we are, smooth sailing, end in sight, and now.....
Suffice it to say, writing takes a back seat again.
BLOOD WILL RUN is pretty much complete. It will hit within the next week. After that, I will be on a "soft" schedule, which means, basically new stuff comes out when it comes out. I can only let you know what I am working on next.
I do not see myself abandoning writing completely right now as it does serve as an emotional outlet and brings additional income to our family. (And I have a feeling I'll have some anger to work out.)
Taking care of my family will always be my #1 priority. I know all of you understand that. We have a long, hard road ahead of us.
Pied Piper of the Undead 2 is the next project on the board. If you want to know for sure when it goes live, please join the mailing list by hitting the link above. I will inform everyone with each new release using the email as I do not know when I will be back on here.
I feel so grateful for all of you who have bought and enjoyed my books. I've made connections with many of you. Thank you so much for your support.
If you have a little time sometime today, please just say a small prayer for my son.
His name is Sam. He is 12 years old. He has an identical twin brother named Joe and an older sister named Claire. He loves Legos, reading, Star Wars, and animals. He is the strongest person I have ever known.
Take care of yourselves,
Hello all!First and foremost I want to send my thoughts and prayers to the victims and families affected by the tragedies in both Boston and Texas. What a horrible time the past week has been. Please keep these people in your thoughts. And remember....be good to each other. I am still waiting on several things to come back before announcing release date for Providence:Blood Will Run. But it looks like it will be the last weekend of this month. I have also decided, after thinking/studying over marketing strategy, that Blood Will Run will be released as one whole complete work instead of the 3-episode miniseries as originally planned. The Providence stories will be told in novella form, with intermittent short stories set between them. Blood Will Run will be Book 1 of the Providence series. It will be followed by a short tentatively called Red Riding, and later this year by Book 2, Slade & McCovey. It will also be the first foray for me into crime fiction, but not iFiction!'s first. Bell got that distinction with NO QUARTER.Once April is up, focus turns to the sequel to the Pied Piper of the Undead. It will be released the last week of May, barring any set backs with the cover.
BOOM audiobook is in the last stage of approval and I have to say, Nic Frantela has delivered a hell of a performance. I am very proud of it. As soon as it makes its way through the channels, I will let you all know here. And if you are interested in Craig Jessen's awesome narration of Pied Piper of the Undead, click here. You can use the Whispersync function with your Kindle and switch between listening and reading the story. Very cool!
If you have not had a chance to check it out, Everette Bell has delivered the first serialized story for iFiction! on his webpage at Wartooth Ebooks. And you can read it for FREE!!!! Head over and start reading CORA. It's pretty awesome. So far after 2 episodes we have zombies, a love story, a strange dystopian society, and a strong female protagonist. For FREE!!!!
If you missed it, I also have a work available for FREE at both Smashwords and Wattpad. It is called BLISS and is written stream-of-consciousness style. It details the breakdown of a marriage after the death of a child and is a twisted homage to Hemingway's short story Hills Like White Elephants. Hit the links and check it out. It's very different. I have written stream-of-consciousness before and it is a very liberating format. To see a master use it, read William Faulkner's amazing novel, As I Lay Dying.
I have also started a mailing list to let all readers know exactly when a new book is available. You can sign up here or hit the link at the top of the page. I will only use it to give you a heads up on a new book. All other news and such will come through here on the blog.
That's the plan for April and May. Two new works hitting the stores, audiobooks from both me and Everette Bell, Bell's CORA episodes continue, and lots more writing and writing and writing.
And then it's my favorite time of the year: Summer. Which means blockbuster movie season and working on BLACK RAIN 3. I don't know which one I am more excited about. For BLACK RAIN fans, a lot of you have been clamoring for the next book. We know we are heading to Hudson Hill to find out what happens with Paul and Steve and the rest of the survivors. But that is not all. We will get our first look at the mysterious "City in the Dark," and some answers to some of the questions everybody is asking. I promise it will be worth the wait!
And as for the movies? Where to start? Star Trek, Iron Man 3, and Man of Steel are all my must sees. But there's also Pacific Rim, This is the End, Wolverine, After Earth, and so much more. It's going to be a great summer. Maybe I'll see you at the theatre.
Next blog is Blood Will Run cover art and official release announcement. The Providence page will also be updated this week with book titles and more info. And hopefully I will have some interviews to announce too.
I have not posted for awhile and I apologize for that. I was knocked flat with some sort of virus and, even after 2 weeks, am still recovering. There will be a blog update this week with the Providence: Blood Will Run release date and further info regarding April/May news.
For now check out Episode 2 of Everette Bell's zombie serial, Cora, over on his website here
Be in touch soon.
iFiction! finally has its first foray into serialized fiction and it comes in the form of CORA. Everette Bell brings us a dystopian zombie future that you can read for FREE on his website before it sees release on the Kindle. Let me repeat that: You can experience it for FREE! Just head to Wartooth's website here
and read the first installment. Then like Everette's Facebook page
to get updates on when the next episode will be released. It's that simple. I had the privilege of reading it early and I am excited. What a great start!
My first foray into the serial platform hits mid-April. The first story arc in the Providence Saga, Blood Will Run, will be three episodes and serve not only as a great story but a nice intro to the city of Providence and the seedy characters that inhabit it. The Providence mini-series will run six episodes total before giving way to the ongoing series that hits Winter of this year: Heater.
Providence is crime fiction and features characters and ideas that were created over 12 years ago. I feel like I am visiting old friends when I'm in this world. I also think it is a unique take on the crime/thriller. I can't think of many crime books that allude to everything from pro wrestling to Macguyver to The Great Gatsby all in one place. I am a child of the '80s and I think you will see that a lot in Blood Will Run.
After Providence/Blood Will Run (not sure on the final title for the project yet) hits in April, May brings us to my most anticipated work yet. Pretty much 2/3 of the reviewers of the Pied Piper of the Undead have asked for a sequel. You asked for it. Well, you're going to get it.
Mid-May sees the release of The Pied Piper of the Undead 2. I am going to have a huge advertising push/campaign once the release date is set for the whole Piper series. It is my most loved work to date (although Black Rain is growing in popularity) and I want to celebrate the new release. The third book hits later in the year to round out the trilogy.
So to rehash: Providence kicks off in April and Pied Piper hits in May. I am pretty confident on the release dates as I am WAY ahead of schedule in the production pipeline. Knock on wood.
The first 15 minutes of the BOOM audiobook just arrived in my Inbox today. Look for more on that soon.
The Goodreads giveaway for Raw Feed Stories is still going on and ends on the 31st. If you have not entered to win one of three copies of the new paperback, hit the site here
I also have uploaded a FREE short fiction piece called BLISS on both Wattpad
. It is a stream-of-consciousness piece that is very different from what I usually write. It is available as a Kindle/NOOK/Kobo file on the Smashwords site. Read it and let me know what you think.
That's it for now. I went to the planetarium today with my sons on a field trip, and left with literally 5 to 6 new ideas. Now if only I can get some of those CUBE clones, I can get them all finished.
GO READ CORA AND LIKE WARTOOTH"S PAGE!!!!!!!! Great, fun fiction for FREE!
Talk to you soon,
List of updates to the website:
-Added Raw Feed Stories to the paperback store
-Added Wave 2 titles to the iFiction! page
This past weekend I spent hawking my paperbacks at the 22nd annual Madicon, James Madison University's Science Fiction and Fantasy convention.
What started out as a nerve racking experience (Will they like me? Will they like the books? What about the typos? What about the cosplay? and so and so on) turned into a blast of a good time. It was the perfect place for my first convention experience as a vendor. I talked to so many people and enjoyed everyone's company greatly. It may have been my first con as a vendor, but it was also my first con in general in several years. I miss that atmosphere of comraderie. Geeks unite!
I had the pleasure of meeting John St. John, the voice of Duke Nukem, who ran one of the craziest coolest panels I have ever witnessed. He's a great guy, very likable, and very talented.
I also discovered Jonah Knight
. This is the bio from his website:Jonah Knight performs Paranormal Modern Folk: songs about ghosts, monsters, super heroes and steampunk with a roots folk style.
In the past few years he has found a niche at SciFi conventions throughout the mid-Atlantic region due to his five supernatural and science fiction leaning albums, his unique finger-picking style, and his live performances. He had written songs for authors, tribute albums, and webcomics. His upcoming album, a collection of creepy Christmas songs, was funded 214% on kickstarter.com and will be release in the 2012 Holiday season
I ended up picking up some of his CDs and am very pleased.
I also want to give a shout out to my boothmate, jonny Lupsha (he spells it with a lower case J. Never did find out why). jonny is the opposite side of the coin in that he solely writes non-fiction. But it's not that boring non-fiction they threw at you in high school and college. No, this non-fiction is very, very cool. jonny is the owner of A Carrier of Fire
publishing and has released two books:
100,000 Years of Detention is a collection of essays on subjects as diverse as ex-girlfriends, Bob Dylan, tattoos, and cold medication. His follow up, Penny Cavalier, is an in-depth study of real life superheroes. jonny spent a year researching and interviewing RLS's and ended up becoming an integral part of the final chapter in the book.
He also releases a digital magazine called the Broken Paragon that takes a close look at the world of video games and its culture, and delves deep into themes and ideas generated by the games. The last issue was almost entirely devoted to the Silent Hill franchise and I know there are several fans of those particular games who visit this blog. And he's a hell of a writer. I just flew through 100,000 Years and enjoyed it very much.
I'll be adding links to both Jonah's and jonny's respective websites to the links page. Hit them up and enjoy.
I also want to link to the Amazon store for my iFiction! pal, Everette Bell. He has been releasing a slew of audiobook versions of several of his works and has more in the pipeline. If you are a fan of the medium, don't miss out. Click here
to look at the catalog.
With the convention taking most of my time I am now ready to get back to working on current projects. First draft of Episode 1 of Blood Will Run is almost done and I will start right in on Episodes 2 and 3. I also broke ground on The Pied Piper of the Undead sequel this weekend and it looks like it will come quick too.
I have had a Wattpad account for a while now but have not used it. Today I started some original work that will be available through the site for free. I will post the info once I have some things uploaded there. Look for flash fiction, song lyrics, plays, poetry and some experimental stuff as I open the vaults and share.
That's it for now. I'm heading back to the grind.
If you look to the right of the blog, you will see a help wanted for new beta readers. I am looking for 2-3 people who would like to beta read new/future projects.
What does a beta reader do? They would be reading mostly for content and story flow, and pointing out obvious typos and such. But mostly for story content.
I have one proofreader who works on spelling/grammar issues. And I do at least two passes looking for errors.
Perks of being a beta reader:
-You get to read all projects ahead of everyone else and for FREE.
-You participate in the process and help make a story smoother and even better.
-You get to read cool stuff, especially if you like horror/scifi/crime or very unique stories.
-I can probably throw some comp paperbacks your way also.
If you are interested in possibly beta reading, then hit me up at email@example.com.
RAW FEED STORIES is out today. It collects all the short story/novellas I have released so far into one nice big book. If you have not read any of my iFiction! works this is a great chance to get them all and save a few bucks too.
Also included is a brand new Day 1 chapter for the Black Rain Journals. For you Black Rain completists who already own the shorts, fear not, the story will be included in a future Black Rain book. There will probably be more Black Rain bonus chapters springing up here and there as I look to bring in more readers and grow the story some more.
Here is the list of what is in Raw Feed:
The Pied Piper of the Undead
Black Rain: The Student
Every 5 to 6 short works, I'll release a collection. They are great for paperbacks and for those looking to buy just one work and not several at one time.
I've been thinking a lot about the next wave of iFiction! one-shots. There will definitely be a haunted house story, and an older story I wrote a few years back. Also look for one "normal" story to come. I love the short story platform and will continue writing them.
As far as the next releases, we are looking at the FIRST serial from iFiction!. BLOOD WILL RUN is a three episode miniseries that sets up a crime world for future projects but will also still stand on its own. I am looking forward to releasing this as I think it will do very well. This will mark my first foray into crime/thriller and the story has been a lot of fun to write.
At the same time I will be working on THE PIED PIPER OF THE UNDEAD 2 !!!!!!!!!! Story notes are finished and I will begin the first draft in early March. So many people have been clamoring for this. I have to admit, the pressure is there and sequels are a tricky road to walk.
Madicon is next week and if you are in my area, stop by. Should be a lot of fun and you can get paperbacks of the Black Rain series and Raw Feed. Check www.madicon.org for more details.
CUBE had a nice debut. Just waiting for some reviews to begin trickling in. Curious to see what everyone thought.
That's all for now.
See you soon.