Saturday, September 26, 2015

Stiff Upper Lip

Sometimes, you just have to set a laser focus and get things done, even if you are tired, or dealing with stress/ emotions, or anything else.  This past week has been a good example of that. Every day, I've gotten a lot done for the press, I've proceeded excellently with my training, and while it hasn't been overly fun or entertaining, I do feel a sense of achievement as I write this late Saturday night.

We've had some new releases at the press, many ongoing blog tours, some new ones coming up, and a few other important initiatives.  Realistically, there are not enough hours in the day to cover it all, but I've hurled myself into it as best I can and have to say a lot of ground has been covered.

I've been working on my website as well, adding some new pages, and fun ones at that.  Z-tracks, which focuses on music I've been listening to, and I've also got pages in place dedicated to my physical journey/training, and the restoration of that Z-28 that means so much to me.  I will be sharing the story behind that car, by the way, so it will make sense as to why that car is special.  The physical journey page will hopefully show others who were in my situation that transformation is not just possible, but DOABLE.  I really hope to encourage those on the same journey as me, in terms of taking charge of the physical self.

Training wise, I had a killer workout today that marks the 11th day out of the last twelve that I've had solid, high-intensity sessions (the other day being a much-needed rest day).  Making progress all the time and was able to integrate some new, advanced martial arts techniques into my routine.  Those moments are milestones of sorts, though I notice improvements in my execution of all other areas.  My main workout is being tweaked and honed all the time and the results continue, so I know it's working! :)

The week ahead should be busy, and I will be preparing for the release of Hellscapes II during Halloween week, so that should be pretty exciting. :)

Stay tuned, October is going to be very active!

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Moving Forward

I started the year on a high note, finding what I call sunshine, only to have things take an unexpected turn that I couldn't do anything about. Nevertheless, I gathered myself up and looked toward summer as a time to get back to the sunshine.

Did it happen? I guess it was a mix. I continued to train hard in martial arts, continued to shed pounds, get stronger, faster and fitter to the point that I have lost over 170 lbs over the past 18 months. I am in the best shape I've been in since my early 20's and getting better daily. Refocusing on martial arts has been a godsend, comprehensive improvement in strength, flexibility, endurance and mental focus. That has truly been a positive and one that I look forward to each and every day.

I've enjoyed the restoration of my 1992 Z28, a heritage edition, 25th anniversary coupe. I continue to make improvements to Valkyrie (the name I gave her), and this week alone I have a brand new dashboard cap and snazzy floor mats with silver Z28 logos on black coming in. She's running great and I've enjoyed having her back in my world.

Career-wise I have had some excellent moments. Imaginarium 2015 went very well, grew larger, ran smoother and improved. I also have Hellscapes 2 looming, set to come out Halloween week. I feel the writing in it takes another step forward and is a progression off of Volume I, a feeling shared by my editor on this one. The artwork turned out fantastic, by Aaron Drown of Aaron Drown Designs. I can't wait to share it, it really captures the vibe of this volume and series.

The personal front has been a disappointment. I really wanted to have a partner in crime ... I envisioned taking a special someone to explore Alaska, go to see a rock show in Vegas, and even a cruise later this fall. The dream is still there, even if the reality isn't. But I'm not giving up and I really believe that someone will figure out what I have to offer and thrive. That time isn't now, though, and I just have to steel myself and keep moving forward. It's all anyone can do.

The fall looms and I've found myself with a mixture of feelings. I'm working very hard, working out very hard, and continuing in my interests such as martial arts, guitar playing and writing. The personal side may still be elusive, for whatever reason, but I do know that things can change for the better in a heartbeat. Let's hope it does! :)

Monday, September 21, 2015

Cover Art for Hellscapes 2 is Coming VERY Soon! I Saw the Illustration Tonight!

It is always an exciting moment getting to see the cover imagery for one of your books for the first time, and tonight was the 11th time I've experienced this! Aaron Drown, of Aaron Drown Design (follow on twitter @adrowndesign) simply knocked it out of the park. As I mentioned in a Facebook post, this artwork could legitimately be used for a Slayer album cover! It fits the book perfectly and I cannot wait to reveal this cover publicly. I'm very proud of the tales in Hellscapes II, and share my editor's opinion that this new set is a strong progression from the tales in volume 1. Now I've got a cover to represent it very powerfully and I am really thrilled! Stay tuned, I hope to have the full cover image with titling to reveal very shortly, as the book comes out near the end of October!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

New Blog Tours Up For Sign-Ups! Heart of a Lion and Hellscapes II!

I have a couple of blog tours up for sign-ups.  They take place the final week of October and the first week of November, for Hellscapes Volume 2 and Heart of a Lion, respectively.

We are looking for book bloggers and reviewers to host activities ranging from interviews, reviews and perhaps other activities for these two week-long tours.  I really want to put a lot of effort into these two weeks, so if you know some book blogs, or are a book blogger yourself, please do have a look!  I want to make these fun and informative visits.  I really enjoy blog tours and am excited about these two back to back tours!

The signups for Hellscapes 2, which will be coming out that week, is at:

The signups for Heart of a Lion, which is already available, is at:

Take a look and signup or share with those who might be interested in hosting a visit!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Checking in, Post-Imaginarium 2015

Things have definitely been busy, to say the least.  Imaginarium 2015 wrapped last weekend and by all measures was a definite step forward.  The convention grew and ran smoother and I have heard wonderful feedback from many of the attendees.

It was quite a challenge, as we don't have that large of a staff, and one of our key staffers couldn't make it due to some health precautions.  The couple weeks leading up to it were a whirlwhind for sure.  I slept a little, got a workout in each day and the rest of each day was FILLED with activity.  

I really believe in this convention though.  It can do some very special things for the writing community on many levels.  The networking and connection opportunities are everywhere, and it is in a very welcoming environment where the New York Times bestselling author and the unpublished writer alike can talk and get to know one another.  I love that aspect about Imaginarium and will strive to maintain that in the future.

I will be posting up some more about Imaginarium here, but things are about to get very busy with both the press and myself... and regarding my own work, Hellscapes II is JUST around the corner. :)