Tag Archives: Jesikah Sundin

February’s Smorgasblog

Here’s the latest eleven things for February.

1. On March 12th, Windward Boosters is teaming up with Barnes and Noble in Bellingham for a BookFair to benefit Windward High School programs. At 5 pm there will be five local YA writers: Royce Buckingham, Nick James, Jesikah Sundin, Tara Ellis and myself. We will each read a bit and then take questions and sign books!

2. GRAYS HARBORWeAreAllSF RESIDENTS FREE FRIDAY at the brand new Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention in Ocean Shores this November. You’ve got 8 days left to register! If you are a resident of Grays Harbor County, you may attend for FREE on Friday! You MUST register by Feb. 29, 2016 to receive this membership rate. Click down where it says Sponsoring Membership and choose: Free for Grays Harbor Residents.

3. A long time ago when I was writing short stories and submitting them regularly, I created  a phrase that I have since adapted for many other uses. F.I. Point. After someone said I should trade mark it, I decided to see how long ago I had said it on the internet! Three years ago. And I here I am mentioning it again. So, what is the F.I. Point? Well, it’s the polite way of saying F— I-! It’s the point where the story is as good as you can get it for the moment. Instead of burning it, the writer should then send it out offering it for sale [As per the Heinlein rules of writing.]

4. Finding myself in Overdrive. Overdrive is a way to borrow an e-book from a public library. The Sno-Isle has ALL IS SILENCE in their overdrive loan system. So, if you use Overdrive, please request it for your library! Thanks.

5. CD Baby, the music equivalent of Book Baby, has set me up with my own youtube channel for my music. #robslater. You can hear my first CD of folk-rock, singer-songwriter tunes, Some of the Parts. You can also hear it on Spotify or purchase it at CDBaby.com or iTunes.

6. A few posts from my personal blog over on www.robslater.com:

7. TWOSIES SALE: One more week of special prices and freebies on my fiction. New all-time highs on Amazon in February. Not blowing the old highs out of the water yet, but soon perhaps. Also doing great internationally on Kobo!

8. A week in a dry-docked boat this summer – This summer I’m going to have a week long writing retreat in a dry-docked boat in Port Townsend while Elena and Miranda do Fiddle Tunes at Centrum!

9. Waiting for my Hemingwrite… Except it’s now called a Freewrite. See advanced pics below. I’m thinking of doing a blog post or two on the  history of the ‘portable’ typing devices I’ve used throughout my writing career. I may wait to write it on my Freewrite.

I can hardly wait…

10. 1 day in a row of 500+ words of fiction… What did I write? My lips are zipped… I’ll just say that you may never read it under my name.

11. I’ll be presenting about “Reaching Reluctant Writers with NaNoWriMo” at the Washington Association of Learning Alternatives Convention in Grand Mound, March 3rd and 4th.

See you in March…


12 Great Book Ideas for Holiday Gift-giving.

Here are a dozen books for the holidays from Rob’s Recently Read, Ready to be Read, and Requested to Read piles. And as James Wells  reminded me, “that most or perhaps all of the books you list are available at local booksellers including Village Books, Cozy Corner, and (we can call them local because they support local authors) our Bellingham Barnes & Noble store.”

Rob’s Recently Read

Also available as an audiobook.

Just finished The Great Symmetry by James R. Wells, I gave it 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for those true Science Fiction fans. Far future, what-ifs and a tightly plotted story. Really a 4.5. From my blurb: Mr. Wells does a wonderful job of beginning en media res and jumping from the tense opening sequence into a media race to propagate competing versions of reality throughout the author’s well-developed setting. The theme of infoterrorism and the power of the media control gives us, like all great science fiction, a thoughtful what if to consider in our own time.

The Immortal Game by Joannah Miley. A great blend of Science Fiction, Greek Mythology with a touch of Romance. Oh, and Chess.

Ready to be Read

Started Elements, Book II in the Biodome Chronicals by Jesikah Sundin. This series will satisfy the fantasy and science fiction. Sort of a historical fiction meets a Blade Runner prequel universe. Book I – Legacy is out and currently on-sale for ebook at $0.99.

Also started The Ariadne Connection SaraStameyAriadneConnby Sara Stamey. A science fantasy about a plague healer in a near future earth damaged by changes in the Earth’s magnetic field.

Dream of a Vast Blue Cavern, a grand epic fantasy by Selah J Tay-Song is also on sale for ebook at $0.99 and its sequel Dream of a City of Ruin is on my TBR pile!

GirlattheendoftheworldThe Girl at the End of the World by Richard Levesque features a tough teen after a strange virus has killed off most of humanity.

The Eternity Series by Mike Hartner, historical fiction told through generations in I, Walter; I, James and I, Mary.  I, Walter is currently free on Amazon.

For another historical jaunt, check out Jacob Kilgore’s Vagrant Prince also on sale as an e-book $0.99 at Amazon.

Harry Takes Off: Astounding Stories of Adventure (Iron Pegasus Book 1) is a steampunk novel by Steve Turnbull that I am looking forward to reading.

Requested to Read – On my list, but not yet on my pile:

Noble Smith’s Spartans at the Gates, sequel to the gripping Sons of Zeus, has been out and the third book in the trilogy: Sword of Apollo is out now, too.

Mindy McGinnis has released a book unrelated to my recent apocalyptic faves: Not a Drop to Drink and In a Handful of Dust. A Madness So Discreet is a dark, historical novel of mystery, madness and murder!

And finally, not that any of you get to read it yet, but I am reading a beta copy of my brother, James G. Slater’s space opera, Claustrom!

Happy holiday reading!

Books By the Bay – Free book fair, signings, panels…

This weekend is a really cool local conference for authors sponsored by Chanticleer Reviews. This is a conference more focused on the how to of the business side of being an author/marketer or authorpreneur. The bonus for local readers is the Books By the Bay occurring Sunday, Monday and Tuesday from 11:00am and 6:00pm.

Here’s the schedule of the the three day Book-fair. There are panels, giveaways, author signings and maybe a reading or two outside if the weather cooperates.

Here’s the schedule for the Books by the Bay events. Many of my author friends will have signings and books for sale. Including: Selah Tay-Song, Tom and Nance Wise, Christine Smith, Pamela Beason, Sara Stamey, Susan Collen Browne, James R. Wells, Bennet R. Coles, Jesikah Sundin.

My signing will take place at 3:30 on Sunday. I’m thinking I’ll try to do a reading outside near the Bellwether at 3 p.m. if I can arrange it. Then at 4:10 I’ll be paneling with Science Fiction Authors:  James R. Wells, Jesikah Sundin, Vijay Laksham, and Bennet R. Coles (Moderator.) Following the SF panel will be another signing at 5:15.

Hope to see you there.

February, a 28 day Slater…

My 48th birthday was February 15th. I feel very blessed this month, a year after releasing my first novel. Hoping that saying something out loud doesn’t ruin it… I have sold a piece of writing for everyday of this month. Yes. 28 sales. Split between pre-sales on Toils and Snares, All Is Silence in print and in all three major e-book markets, two copies of Just Desert and one copy of the Outward Bound Collection. That doesn’t come close to matching the first few months All Is Silence the first few months after release, but sales had fallen significantly after the summerMy total for January was 14. December was about half of that.

Funny thing is there has been no significant up-tick. Has all the promotion I have been doing for the past 18 months finally started to pay off? Am I reaching critical mass? I could learn to live with this steadiness, especially considering I will have a new novella out the day after tomorrow and a new short story in March on Kindle format: Another Kind of Ignorance. Planning on releasing a short story a month until Straight Into Darkness comes out this summer.

A few of those sales can be attributed to my activity on Wattpad. Tonight I hit 400,000 reads, Over 62,000 people have sampled my novel. Several thousand are working their way through it serially with a fairly passionate core of about 1000 readers who makes comments, complaints and compliments. Not coincidentally, if the trend continues, I will have 1000 Followers on Wattpad by March 1st.

I started uploading the first draft of Toils and Snares to Wattpad in early December. I uploaded the first four chapters in two parts each over 8 weeks. Then, I updated it with the second draft. Tonight I finished uploading the final draft and have Chapter 5 — Part I, the last section I will upload for free. It would be interesting to know how many of the folks who read All Is Silence and/or Toils and Snares on Wattpad purchase Toils and Snares on Amazon. I wish I had a good way to track those numbers.

Thanks so much to all the folks who gave me feedback on Toils & Snares, especially, Elena, Donald, Jesikah, Amanda, Dave, Peter, Katie, Nichole, Pam, Shann, Kole, and my Mom & Dad. I’m afraid the one thing I forgot in the pre-sale upload was an acknowledgement and thanks page. So, once it goes live, I will update that to reflect the support of you wonderful people. Since I will need to do an update anyway, I would love to hear about any typos anyone may find in the story.

Next week I will start revealing some of the rough drafts of cover art for Straight Into Darkness. I will say the cover, designed by Pintado, the same artist behind All Is Silence has created another awesome cover that captures the bleaker, colder feelings. Let’s just say it’s a little blue.

Thanks for coming along for the ride. I hope you’ll follow me Straight Into Darkness. I promise there will be a light at the end of the tunnel that is not an oncoming train.

My Path to Indie Publication: Part VIII–Print Release, Awards and Readings.

Path to Indie Publication Series is a companion series to Marshall Ryan Maresca’s Path to Publication. I have been avidly reading Marshall’s posts since I discovered his blog. Read Path to Indie PublicationPart IPart IIPart III. Part IV. Part V. Part VIPart VII. Part VIII. Part IX.

Print Release, Awards and Readings *

February 15th was my 47th birthday and that week Pintado’s cover for All Is Silence was awarded a Gold Star by Joel Friedlander’s Book Designer Cover Contest.ECDA-GoldStart-Jan-2014 The shipment of 500 books came in and I was ushered into the bowels of the Village Books store, where I discovered that 28 boxes of books will fit in a RAV4. The first of many surreal moments was sitting in the VB basement signing a box full of books. Paul Hanson, Store Manager, suggested that VB could host my Release Party. We set a date for March 14th which would give us time to advertise.

That weekend I wrote and published the first post in this series as I tried to create content for my blog instead of just announcing my writing progress. I spent the weekend away on Lummi Island in a friend’s cabin, updating my blog, creating the Rocket Tears Press website and a website for the cabin we were renting. [You can rent it, too. Special discount for Educators.]

Dystopian-compactThe following week the 2013 Dante Rossetti Young Adult Fiction Awards were announced and All Is Silence won 1st Place in the Dystopian category. Not only did it feel great to have the recognition, but part of the award is a professional review and promotion by the Chanticleer Reviews folks.

The next few weeks were a blur. Chanticleer Reviews invited me to do a reading at their booth at the Association of Writers and Publishers in Seattle and asked for books to sell. The reading was standing room only, since it was in the middle of an aisle, (As you can see in this photo montage by fellow author and editing peer, Jesikah Sundin) but it gave me a chance to try out my material. My editor and writing buddy, Amanda J. Hagarty helped out at the booth and got folks excited about the book. After the reading she came running. Hugh Howey had been sighted at the Amazon Booth. Jesikah and I rushed after her with books in hand.

We got pictures and Hugh asked if I was the writer of the book in my hand. He took it and flipped through it, seeming impressed. “Did you do the pagination yourself?” I nodded,  way too FanBoy at the moment to think of much to say other than thank him for all he’s done for Indie Authors with the Author’s Earnings site. I didn’t even offer him a copy of my book. Oops.

While researching this post I found a draft of a post [now published] I had started March 3rd titled: Pubslush & Kobo Winner. I had entered a random drawing this time and won! So, this summer I will be running a Pubslush crowdsourcing fundraiser so I can pay my cover artist and editors more on the second novel. Mark from Kobo had asked me to write a post about my relationship with Village Books for the Kobo Writing Life Blog. I had written the first draft over my Birthday weekend, submitted it and then forgot about it. It appeared somewhere in there.

Indieinsiders-nextpicksAll of these interactions with Kobo lead to the next big win. Thanks to Mark Lefebvre [writer name: Mark Leslie] of Kobo who nominated ALL IS SILENCE, it was listed as #1 on the inaugural IndieReader Next Picks list for April. In this maelstrom of excitement, I also forgot to post this one!

Next: Part IX – Party On. Where our author protagonist does a release party and some readings.

* Adapted and expanded from the Foreword to Outward Bound: Science Fiction & Poetry, a collection of some of my published and unpublished works. Top