Mae Clair offers this wonderful review of Grinders today. If you don’t know Mae, you really ought to check out her site. She’s also touring around a new book, and it’s one of those 90 minute reads. Sounds perfect for an afternoon reading session.
Happy St. Patricks Day, everyone! Whether you’re Irish or not, ’tis a day for the wearing’ o’ the green, and a tip o’ the hat to the wee folk. Right now, we could all use a little luck given the state of the world in view of Covid-19. Whatever your corner of the planet, I hope you stay safe and well. If you’re stuck inside, it’s the perfect time to catch up on your reading.
With that in mind, let’s jump into this week’s book review!
Jimi Cabot, and her partner Lou, are two cops assigned to the “Grinder Squad” in a futuristic San Francisco. Grinders are people who have their bodies altered through illegal surgeries which use computer chips to provide enhanced senses. Despite their department assignment, Jimi and Lou usually find their days eaten up by the drudgery of routine patrol and domestic disturbance calls—until they happen upon…
This is one of the busiest weeks of the year for us at work. With everything pretty much settled now, I decided to take today off.
I didn’t have any specific goals other than not having to get up and commute. This week began with a return to Daylight Savings Time, included a full moon, and ends with Friday the 13th. None of those are particularly troubling. In fact, I published Viral Blues the last time Friday the 13th rolled around.
The news is depressing with all the viral scares going around. I was looking forward to baseball season, so that’s kind of disappointing. I understand why they’re making all these changes, but I don’t have to like it.
Fortunately for me, there is the writing thing. I need to address some critiques I have back, but I don’t have them all. With that in mind, I decided to add more words. It wasn’t a banner day, but 1600 new words are more than I had when I got up this morning. I kind of like them, but always reassess when my next writing day begins.
The tour for Grinders is ongoing, and I needed to deliver some materials for that. I think it’s time well spent. No sense publishing these things if I don’t try to make people aware of them. This tour hasn’t been any more productive than any of the others, but there is one noticeable difference. I’m enjoying it more. By only having two posts per week, I don’t feel rushed and harried to cover all the comments and such. Comments have been great, too. There seem to be more of them this time.
This could actually be a good thing in the long run. I buy books by earmarking them in my head, then getting to them when I have some time. I don’t always remember all the things I was interested in, and sometimes a reminder will send me running to Amazon. Perhaps, by spreading the posts out, I can have those little reminders online for those who are more like me.
Two years ago, I decided that writing my next book was my best source of promotion. It seems to be working to a degree. My backlist is getting more action than it ever has. It isn’t a lot, but it’s noticeable. More publications means I’m out there more frequently than ever before. Phase two of this idea will be some “specials” when my series books are ready to come out. It’s possible I might weave in a free day for one of the older titles, too. That’s all speculation. My main goal is to get the next Lanternfish book ready to set sail.
Those 1600 word might be all I accomplish this weekend. There could be a few more, but the story has moved to a point where I’m not stressing about it. If I can’t get it finished before Summer, I may just release it in the middle of Summer. I never have great luck with Summer releases, but I’ve been told the middle of a trilogy is a tough sell anyway. They usually don’t move until the series concludes.
I’m open to suggestions on that point. Let me hear from you in the comments. I’d like to learn your release day and promo secrets.
Oh, Public Service Announcement: Hiding in the closet with a copy of Grinders is a great way to spend the weekend and will not expose you to Corona Virus. It’s an E-book, so you can’t substitute it for toilet paper, but you won’t want to after you get into it.
On one of my last posts I tossed a photo of Otto out there to draw interest. Frankie demanded equal time, so here she is on one of the rare times when she pauses in her playing.
Lisa Burton is visiting with Marcia today. Her topic is the antagonist from Grinders. She’s also handing out one of her new posters, so you might want to check it out. While you’re there, Marcia has a great blog worth following, and a few novels you might want to check out.
I’m so pleased to announce we have a first-time guest on The Write Stuff today, and what a guest she is, too! Some of you may have met her on other blogs, but for those who haven’t, please welcome Lisa Burton, Craig Boyack’s personal assistant and spokesmodel. (Oh, and I should probably mention Lisa is a robot, in case you’ve never run into any personal assistants who have that distinction.)
Lisa, we are delighted to have you join us, so step right up. You have the floor!
Wow, Marcia, it’s such an honor to finally meet you. I haven’t been to Florida in ages, and hope to do some poking around when we’re finished. Maybe we can go hug one of those cute manatees or something.
Craig sent me here to plug his new book, Grinders, and I’m kind of excited about it. Robot girls love…
Happy Monday, everyone! I am excited to welcome back an exceptional guest, Author, C. S. Boyack.
He’s got a brand new release and is here to talk about it. So, without further ado, let’s welcome him!
Thanks for having me over today, Vashti. You’re always welcome to stop at my place the next time you’re touring a project around.
My newest book is called Grinders, and it’s a bit of science fiction known as cyberpunk. I’ll let the blurb go into the details about the story. My topic on this leg of the tour is research.
I write speculative fiction, and that includes fantasy, paranormal, and science fiction. Many people think we have it easy, because we don’t have to do the deep research that other authors do. Nothing could be further from the truth. Oh, we don’t have it so bad, I think the murder procedural type authors might…
I didn’t even try to write new fiction this weekend. I only get two days, and Old What’s Her Face was off for both of them. I decided to dedicate my time to blogging.
Most of this is the slow promotion of Grinders. I wrote a post that should go live tomorrow, and I’ll try to find time to share it here. I was also invited to do an interview for an old friend, and that will post next week sometime. My promo is all set through this week.
I’m enjoying this promo tour a lot more than past ones. I can manage two a week, and it’s far superior to multiple posts per day for one week. There could be something to keeping the book in the public eye for a longer period of time.
I also wrote and scheduled my next post for Story Empire. I’m working my way through the Character Archetypes over there, and most of them have been pretty fun. This post was work. The Trickster is an odd character to write about, and there are nearly as many opinions about it as there are writing blogs. I have it ready to post later this month, and there is time to tweak it here and there.
Aside from that, welcome to Daylight Savings Time. There is a bill running through the Idaho Legislature to pick one and stay with it all year. Of course it didn’t happen in time to prevent us from changing today. I really don’t care, but know it bothers a lot of people. I need to call my parents this morning, but I’m dragging my feet. Mom probably won’t adopt DST until she gets up this morning.
We managed date night last night, since it was payday. We went to Old Chicago for beer and pizza. I’m halfway toward earning my St. Patrick’s Day tee shirt. We can go back the next payday and complete it. After that we stopped off for tennis balls and Nylabones. It’s not like the dogs are neglected, and sometimes we ought to remember the marketing is designed to hook people.
I’d like to do some reading, but between feisty dogs with new toys, and Old What’s Her Face, it might not happen.
I noticed that I haven’t had a lot of images here lately. All blog posts are better with graphics, and I know that. So here’s a picture of Otto, trying to talk Mom into taking him for coffee. He likes the ride, the baristas all pet him, and he gets one called a pupaccino.
There are a lot of layers in Grinders. I’m at Charles’s place today to discuss one of the sub-plots that wrapped up fairly well. While you’re there, check out Charles’s blog and his War of Nytefall series. He just released a new volume about the same time I published Grinders.
(Today we have a special guest who many of us know. C.S. Boyack is here to talk about his newest release Grinders, which is a cyberpunk adventure. Not a common genre for my blog, so this is really exciting. Today, he’s going to talk about subplots and how none of the characters are doing what they want to do. Have fun.)
Thanks for inviting me back, Charles. It’s always fun visiting your place. I’m here to talk about my newest book, Grinders.
This one is a type of science fiction known as cyberpunk. I’ll let the blurb explain the main points. My topic today is one of the sub-plots. There is a lot going on in Grinders, and in some ways it makes a statement about the human condition. I didn’t really set out to do that, it just kind of happened.
Today was my flex day. I started off with my usual surf through social media, read blogs, etc.
Then I turned my attention to the Lanternfish manuscript. I always read my last chapter before starting, and managed to correct a couple of typos. (Probably missed some, too.) I do this to get back into the story.
My goal was to have them sail away from their stop in Giapon by the end of the morning. I kind of made it.
This is because there was a lot to do. Serang needed to appoint officers on her inferior ship. None of the people aboard like each other, but she made a good start with them. Its sail pattern is inferior, and its going to have a hard time even keeping up with Lanternfish or La Girona, and they aren’t fast ships.
This led to some team building when a new sail pattern required construction of additional sails. They used people from all the various factions and Serang made them work together.
I also planted a little surprise for James in the form of a gift from the shogun. He isn’t interested in his new teenage concubine, but his adopted son sure is. The hopes are that some of this tension can carry my story while they sail the arctic waters. This new character will get a bigger moment later in the story.
In an emergency, I have a loose idea for an encounter with a monster that will happen outside of James’s view. He will only get a report from the root monsters after the fact. I need to figure out how to drop enough clues as they call the monster Waltus, so readers can figure out it was a walrus monster. I’ll only write it if I think the story could use it.
At the end of my day, Lanternfish and La Girona were still tied to the dock. Serang’s ship, called a turtle boat, was being pushed away from the dock by some pole men. May sound lame, but I’m counting it. They’re leaving now.
Research said the turtle boat was a real thing, and seems to have some connection to the Korean Peninsula. I also got lucky with names again. While Giapon is an old reference to Japan, Goryeo is an old reference to Korea. These make good names for my fictional locations.
I ended my fiction at 2900 words. My next section will be finishing the repairs while at sea. James wants to get the natives away from Giapon, and hopes to avoid a revolt over taking them away. It was a good day for me.
Grinders is still chugging along. I contacted two more hosts for next week, and already heard back from one. I prepared that post and sent it out. It’s a post about my antagonist, so I think it could draw some real attention.
Tonight it’s Woodford Reserve on the rocks. Back to the paycheck job tomorrow.
Someone knows about the hat. The creature from another dimension that helps Lizzie fight against the creatures of darkness.
They are summoned to a cryptic meeting with a secret society, where they meet other people with enhanced skills. It turns out someone, or something, has been tampering with the world’s vaccine supply. The goal doesn’t appear to be political or financial, but biblical pestilence.
Can this group of loners come together in time to make a difference when even the proper authorities are obstacles?
Check out Viral Blues, for your dose of paranormal adventure, with a strong sample of dark humor. And in recent superhero style, don’t miss the secret last chapter after the back material.
I was born in a town called Elko, Nevada. I like to tell everyone I was born in a small town in the 1940s. I’m not quite that old, but Elko has always…
If I have to work today, so does Lisa Burton. She’s visiting with Joan Hall today to talk about Grinders. Stop over and learn about Brandi the moth girl. While you’re there, check out Joan’s site. You might find a cool new blog to follow, and some fabulous fiction to check out.
Happy Monday, everyone! No mystery today because I’m welcoming back a very special guest, Lisa Burton.
Lisa the Robot Girl is the personal assistant to my friend and fellow writer, C. S. Boyack. He’s got a brand new release and Lisa is here to talk about it. So, without further ado, let’s welcome her!
Oh my gosh, Joan, I’m so happy to be back. It gets kind of lonely at the writing cabin, and this girl likes to get out of the house once in a while.
Anyhoo, I’m here to promote Craig’s newest book, Grinders. This one is pretty fun because it’s a return to science fiction. Robot girls are all about science fiction. Specifically, Grinders is a cyberpunk story.
In this story, there are a lot of colorful characters, and Brandi the moth girl is one of them. She’s way fun, and reluctantly, helpful to the main plot…
I spent yesterday clearing my plate of busy work associated with promoting Grinders. This worked out well, and other than a few tweets, I don’t have much to do on that front.
I also addressed the critiques for both stories, so that left me free to write. I opened the HMS Lanternfish manuscript and read my last chapter. After that it was off to the races.
I answered some questions about a ghostly encounter Mule and a couple of the other officers had. Since this is pseudo Asia, there are some awesome ghost stories to pirate from. I also set Mule up to have another one at a later time. I don’t know if it will happen in this book or in the next one, but this book seems more appropriate. It would be pretty easy to do either way.
A lot of research went into the world of Giapon. Not only ghost stories, but something cool called a turtle boat, too. James and friends are stuck with three ships now, which prevents his ability to leap magically ahead. He’s stuck sailing the old fashioned way. Obviously, I’ll free him to maneuver later on, but for now, this suits the story.
Perhaps the most fun part was putting Serang in charge of the turtle boat and all it’s inhabitants. These aren’t people who are glad to see her, but I like the way she handled herself. She also promoted herself, and General Serang is going to have some interesting adventures ahead of her.
I still need to iron out some details, then they’re going to be leaving Giapon. Other details can be worked out at sea. I had to stop because the general needs to assess her army and appoint officers. This is going to require me to do some research into names, and come up with a bunch of new characters. (As if Lanternfish needed more characters.)
I need to do a flashback to Serang’s past, but I can manage that at sea as they head north.
All this will be worth it when they get back to the actual war, and even the land war. I also need to come up with some fantasy ideas for arctic exploration, because that’s where they’re headed next. I’m trying to include some fantasy elements at every stop. I have the weird creatures on the floating island, the ghosts of Giapon, and I want to keep that coming.
I still need to work in a little surprise I have planned for James, the captain. This is going to be a fun plant that I can do many things with later.
I actually checked my numbers, because it felt pretty good. Today it came to 3800 new words. That’s a pretty great day by my standards. Yeah it probably needs some work, but it exists to be fixed now.