Flat Excerpt

     “I stepped over and through set after set of shattered bones. I never realized previously that America is paved with road kill. I’d seen the signs as we all have, a deer, or dog, or small unidentifiable mammal bloating on the side of the road. Until this moment, however, I never added all that up to what is actually out there. Nor did I realize how massive roadside signs are until just then. The sign that declared a rest area two miles up the road to be open was quite the contraption up close.

“I considered going back to the rest area on my side of the highway but that would make for a four mile round trip instead of just over two. I noted with satisfaction, from where I was standing I could see a railroad underpass. The way I was going had just gotten a bit shorter and I pressed on. The pebbles gathering in my sandals were getting more irritating, but life was looking up. I glanced at my watch and did the brief math on how long my trip would take and how long it would take help to arrive. I should just barely be home by seven. Continue reading “Flat Excerpt” »

Discipline and Working Toward the Future

I finished up all the prep for what remains of my BASH campaign yesterday, and it’s been tremendously liberating. I’ve been just bursting with ideas, and super productive ever since.

I think I’ve mentioned before that I’m a firm believer in a lot of what Dean Wesley Smith has to say about writing. A couple weeks ago he wrote this post on his Blog about investing in your future by writing stories. It really struck a chord with me.

Longer ago now than it really should be, I published the short story Flat over on Amazon and Barnes & Noble, but I was a little daunted by the Smashword Style Guide so I procrastinated working on it. It has sold poorly but consistently since being published. I has produced from Amazon and B&N in total about $10. Now that sounds abysmal and in a way it is, but it’s still $10 for one story that wasn’t reaching everybody it could reach over a period of almost exactly six months. If I can keep doing that, overtime it will actually pile up to a meaningful amount of money.

So I went back and had somebody new edit it, made many of the suggested changes and formatted it for Smashwords, so the Smashwords edition is more than superficially different than the others. That was last week and it’s made another sale and the sample has been downloaded several times. This is super good news for the Slow and Steady wins the race approach that I have decided to take.

The story made it into the premium catalog on the 27th with no further changes needed.

I finished the next Story I’ve been working on Dirt Dart today, I haven’t finished the cover art yet because I want to hold off on doing it until I have a new version of GIMP installed and I’m having technical issues with it.

My plan here, and I always hesitate to share my plans until they are near completion, is to give myself two weeks to publish “Something”, when I have something ready to publish (likely a short story or collection thereof) I can spend the rest of my allotted time to work on longer fiction.

Today has been a fantastically productive day by that standard.

Now the hard part becomes maintaining this strategy, and that’s where discipline comes in. Discipline used to be my strong suit. It has what has allowed me to succeed often with less skill than my peers where they have failed. I have been for a while now letting that discipline lapse, and that needs to be fixed.


Flat is the narrative of a National Guard Soldier on his way home one weekend, who ended up stranded on the side of the road, and the Zombie deer he encountered there.

It is currently available from Amazon, and Barnes & Noble.

If you read it, please leave a review at either or both of those places.

EDIT: Now making a profit.