Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Babysitting Money is Live!

Gavin English isn't in Chicago searching for an unfaithful woman's wedding ring out of the goodness of his heart. He's doing it for the fifty thousand dollar check the unfaithful woman gave him. All he has to do is track down the pretty boy who stole it—in one of the biggest cities in the country.

Lucky for Gavin, ex-police Lieutenant Jack Daniels knows her way around the city—her city—and she's agreed to set aside her mommy duties for a few days, so that she can babysit him and his assistant while they're in town.

But somewhere between Gavin's visit to the busted-down crackhouse and their stop at a low-rent donut shop, Jack's peaceful babysitting gig turns deadly and the bullets start flying.

BABYSITTING MONEY brings together Ken Lindsey's heavy drinking, hard-boiled PI (TO THE BONE, ON THE EDGE) and J.A. Konrath's retired hero cop/brand-new mommy (WHISKEY SOUR, SHAKEN) for an intense, laugh-out-loud thriller. 

Babysitting Money is now available for the Kindle, you can get your copy for only $1.99 RIGHT HEREWriting this with Joe was incredibly fun, and I can't wait to get to the novel we'll be collaborating on soon.

As most of you already know, I have recently pulled my titles from KDP Select and re-listed them at other great vendors like Smashwords, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, etc.  Babysitting Money is no different, and will be available through those other retailers as well, it just so happens that publishing on Amazon is quicker than most other places.  I'll keep you updated (if not here, then on my Facebook or Twitter or at

And here's the part where I ask for your help.  I know that not everyone out there has the two bucks to spend on an ebook.  Whether or not you can buy this thrilling, funny, awesome short story, I would be so grateful if you would help me get the word out.  Share the link on your facebooks and twitters and tumblrs, share the blog, retweet the tweets...  Whatever you can do to help get the word out will be huge.

Help me show Joe Konrath (who has sold over two million books in his career) that working with n00bs like myself is well worth the time and effort!

As always, thanks for reading,
buh bye then

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Let's Talk About Outlining (or Plotting)

I use Grammarly for english proofreading because nothing is wurser than having yer mistooks found by a reeder.

It's a bit of a hot topic in the writing world, whether or not you must outline your story.  There are hundreds of articles and blogs out there about how and when to outline your story, what the best ways to go about making an outline are, how outlines might be the difference between a good story and a bad one, etc...

The outline is 95 percent of the book. Then I sit down and write, and that’s the easy part. - Jeffrey Deaver

So that's one side of the argument.

Another set of voices is out there saying that they don't, or can't, outline.  That the story and characters come together as they will, and trying to force them into one certain direction, just because you said you would, is a mistake.

Plot is, I think, the good writer’s last resort, and the dullard’s first choice. - Stephen King


I never understand people trying to force their ways on others, or saying any way that's not your way is wrong.  Art, religion, politics, sexuality, education, diet, raising children, drinking scotch, buying a home, reading a book...  Unfortunately, no matter what you're doing these days, it's very likely that someone out there does is willing to tell the world that you are doing it wrong.

I hate to pull the "Can't we all just get along?" card, but seriously, Can't we all just get along?

I don't plot my stories.  I've tried.  For years I forced outlines and structure and plot onto paper, because my English teachers told me that I had to if I wanted to write something.  I can honestly say that I never finished writing a story that I plotted out first.  I lost interest, grew frustrated, stopped caring about the story.

I wrote To The Bone because I pictured an old, grizzled PI that was trying to find a lost girl, got captured by a cannibal, and wound up having to eat his own feet.

That's not what the story turned out to be.  A lot of my original ideas made it through, but the story itself became another animal entirely.  It's better, I think, and it became that way organically.

But that's only what works for me.  If outlining works for you, for the love of God, outline.  Whatever it takes to make your story better, do it. That's what I'm going to do.  I'm just happy to know there are so many people out there that love writing, I don't care how they do it.

That's all for now,
thanks for reading,
buh bye then

Monday, November 11, 2013

WARNING *Lots of Sh!t* and Some J. A. Konrath Collaboration News

I've been writing most of the day today.  That shouldn't be a big deal, it's what I do.  Right?

Well, yeah.  But I have these days, these awful days, when I just know that every word I put down on paper is shit.  Hell, every word I have ever put down on paper looks like shit on these days.  It's a simple choice to walk away from the keyboard on days like today.

Walk away.  Watch a movie.  Read a book written by someone who isn't shit.  Stare at your half-empty cup of coffee and listen to the Decemberists until you pass out.

Those are all viable options on days like today.  Everything makes sense except for the writing...

Maybe that's why it's so important to write on days like this.  Trudge, stomp, fight, kick, cuss, murder your way through every single word you can squeeze out of your brain meat.  When I accomplish something on a day like today, I know it was worth it.

Speaking of worth it...


Gavin English isn't in Chicago searching for an unfaithful woman's wedding ring out of the goodness of his heart.  He's doing it for the fifty thousand dollar check the unfaithful woman gave him.  All he has to do is track down the pretty boy who stole it—in one of the biggest cities in the country.

Lucky for Gavin, ex-police Lieutenant Jack Daniels knows her way around the city—her city—and she's agreed to set aside her mommy duties for a few days, so that she can babysit him and his assistant while they're in town.

But somewhere between Gavin's visit to the busted-down crackhouse and their stop at a low-rent donut shop, Jack's peaceful babysitting gig turns deadly and the bullets start flying.

BABYSITTING MONEY brings together Ken Lindsey's heavy drinking, hard-boiled PI (TO THE BONE, ON THE EDGE) and J.A. Konrath's retired hero cop/brand-new mommy (WHISKEY SOUR, SHAKEN) for an intense, laugh-out-loud thriller.

On a brighter note, this is happening any minute!  I've collaborated with J. A. Konrath to write this fun, short thriller, BABYSITTING MONEY.  It's been kind of a dream, because Konrath is one of my favorite writers (who has sold somewhere around two-million ebooks and has an incredibly popular blog about the publishing world) and he just happens to be a lot of fun to work with.

BABYSITTING MONEY should be released on most popular platforms any day now, and it's only going to be $0.99.  Another piece of awesome news on this front is that Joe Konrath and I will be putting out a follow up full-length novel, which will also feature Gavin English, Jack Daniels, and a bunch more characters from each of our worlds.  I have two other manuscripts I'm working on right now that I need to finish up before that happens, but I'm thrilled and can't wait to get started.

I think that's it for now,
thanks for reading,
buh bye then

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

It's Not My Birthday! (yet)

Surprise!  I'm drinking coffee, and I've decided to pretend that the last few weeks of not blogging never happened.  You cool with that?


I'm writing a prequel to my Gavin English stories right now, because lots of folks have said they want to know more about Gavin and his whiskey chugging, chain smoking, privately investigating ways.  The good news is: the story has always been there.  Gavin English's backstory has been building and filling in for me since the day I started writing To The Bone.  And since people have asked, I'm more than happy to put it out there.

I've also been working on a short story collaboration with one of my absolute favorite indie authors, J.A. Konrath.  I'm not going to say much about it, but I'm hoping it will be released sometime this month, and there might even be a collaborative novel to follow!  I'll let you know more about all that as things develop.

Although my birthday isn't until the middle of Sept, I already know what my amazing girlfriend got for me, and I'm very excited.  For some time now, Joe Hill (author of such awesomeness as NOS4A2, Twentieth Century Ghosts, Heart Shaped Box, and more) has been writing a graphic novel series called Locke and Key.  I haven't read one single page, because I wanted to get the entire collection and just devour it.  And that's what she got me!

There will be days where I'm completely useless as I read these graphic novels.  I'm cool with that.


Hey, are you listening?

The River Runes is free right now on Amazon for your Kindle.  You should go get it.  Go ahead, I'll wait.

Did you get it?  Good, I hope you enjoy it.

I think that's it for now.

Thanks for reading,
buh bye then

Friday, August 2, 2013

Honor Among... Writers?

First, let me shamelessly promote myself.  To The Bone is free on Amazon for the next several days, and if you don't have it yet, you should go get it!  It has a new cover, a bit more "noir" feeling that I like a lot.  Please feel free to let me know what you think. :)

And now for bloggity stuff.

This isn't my first post about writers and the importance (at least it's important as I see it) of honestly dealing with readers.  Awhile back, there was a big shit-hitting-the-fan kind of explosion as people found out about authors paying for positive reviews of their books.  I talked about it while it was all going down, you can see what I had to say HERE

My opinion hasn't really changed.  I think buying positive reviews is shady, and certainly akin to lying to the people you are asking to pay for your work.  If you don't believe in your books, don't publish them.

That's enough about that, I've already said my piece.  However, there is something else going on right now that I find equally shitty, and I wanna talk about it.

I posted on a very popular writers' website that I would love to give some free copies of my books out for honest reviews.  Let's be real here, my "honesty is the best policy" policy isn't magically bringing people in to read and review my stuff, and I'm okay with that.  The road is long and all that, and I'm ready to trudge and toil in obscurity for as long as I need to.  But if I can give out a few books and get some folks to say whether they loved or hated them, I'm gonna give it a shot.

I got a few responses back, and they all pretty much looked like the one I'm going to share.

I'm not going to say the name of the site, or the author who contacted me, but I am going to share what was said in one of the emails I got.

"Dear Ken

I write to you after read you post on (redacted) Also I enter to you blog just1writer and felt in love with your 2 beautiful dogs (my wife and I have a girl/princess/daughter dog that we rescued from the streets 15 years ago! Her name is (redacted)!).

First of all I want to wish the best for your new book TO THE BONE. 
I am an author too and I would enjoy to share with you my new thriller/sci fi  novel, (redacted)
I am willing to reciprocate with you a positive and great review on Amazon  and want to help you to share my enthusiasm with potencial readers. As I know that maybe you are very busy with your own project to read the full version of the book,  I propose to you if you want, doing the following:

This week I am going to read the Look Inside of TO THE BONE and I write a kind and positive review on your Amazon book's page, and then it would be very valuable and helpful for me if you could do the same. My book's link is (redacted)
When I post the review, I will send to you my user for you to know!!

If you want to know more about me and my work, this is my website where you can see the book trailer (redacted) and also the Look Inside on Amazon too.

Let me know if you accept! Anything that you need, tell me and would be a pleasure to help you!"
Gee, this guy seems really nice.  He reached out, mentioned my blog and my dogs, shared a little about himself, and offered to review my book.  Well, at least the first two or three pages of my bookAnd to be honest, the first few pages are really good...  So, I decided to take a look at what the guy was selling.

The book he asked me to "review" has 22 reviews already, 18 of which are 5 stars.  

I'm a suspicious type.  I can't help it.  I don't wanna begrudge this guy anything, but if he's made this stupendous offer to me, I'm guessing he's made it to someone else as well.  I wonder how many someone elses there have been.  Maybe, his book is fantastic and all of his reviewers are honest and read the entire book and just want to let people know how great it really is.  Or, in a worst case scenario, maybe none of those folks have read the book, and everyone lied in order to get a five star review of their own.

I'm not a moron.  I hope.  I know that sometimes people lie.  Advertisements lie, book sellers lie, publishers and readers lie, my mom lied to me, your mom lied to me, (tehe, mom jokes) and even television and internet news sources lie.  Everybody lies sometimes.  I get that having a dozen fake five star reviews makes your book look better than having one or two real four or five star reviews does.

Those reviews mean the difference in lots of ways.  Sites like BookBub won't let you give them your money if you don't have several good reviews already.  Some people won't read a book that doesn't have X number of reviews when they cruise the page.  And some folks just want to know that someone else thought it was worth their time to read your work.

Plus, when you're unknown, it can take years to build a fanbase, and who's got the time for that?!

But I still stand by what I said last time.  If you don't believe that your work can stand on its own, don't publish it.  Keep working on it, keep meeting people, keep tweeting and tumbling and facebooking, keep editing, and keep writing.  I don't think it's cool to lie to potential readers.

I never will think it's cool.  Asking folks to review your book is one thing.  Asking people to lie is another.  It's shady and shitty and dirty.  

Ok, that's it for this one I guess.  Maybe next week I'll tell you all the ways that I'm a dirtbag, but this week I'm feeling so fresh and so clean clean.

Thanks for reading,
buh bye then

Friday, July 26, 2013


I don't have much to say this week, I've been traveling and hanging with my kids and I haven't been near the internet much at all.  But, I didn't want to break my stride this early, so I figured I would drop by and give you folks an eyeful of awesome stuff I've seen around the ol' www.  Hope you're having a great week, I have been!

If you haven't seen Wil Wheaton's Tabletop gaming show yet, go watch it now!  It's a great place for beginners to learn about the gaming world, and it's awesome to get to see nerd culture icons freak out as their characters are devoured by zombies.

Sourcefed is a great place to get news, in an entertaining and fun way.  I don't watch news because it bothers me, but I watch Sourcefed because they make me laugh and have a wide range of opinions and backgrounds.

Rainn Wilson (Dwight from The Office) has put together an awesome channel, full of celebrities and nerd stuff... and it's all positive.  No crazy hatred or meanness, just folks talking about what makes them happy.  And it's pretty funny as well.

Ok, that's it for now, hope you have a great week.

Thanks for reading,
buh bye then

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Sacred F*cking Words

*Spoiler: This blog will contain language your mommy told you was bad.*

The other day, I was talking with my fifteen year old daughter about her (cringe) "love life."  It was horrible.  Not because I'm one of those deluded parents who thinks their children will never grow up and fall in love and do awful things to their bodies, but because I know that I will spend the rest of my life watching my kids get their hearts broken.

"He's so good to me, Daddy.  I love him."

And I realized recently that parents have been censoring the wrong words, protecting their kids from words that don't mean anything, and letting the important words slip through without notice.  Here's an example:

Imagine a ten year old girl, hanging from the monkey bars at school.  She has sparkly Disney princess shoes on, and pink and purple bands are rotated along her braces.  Her bright green eyes go wide as she finds a boy standing near the ladder, awaiting his turn to cross.  "Fuck off, Timmy," she says.  "I just got up here."

Do you feel rage picturing that scene?  How could a little girl talk like that?  Didn't her mother teach her better?

Yes, she did.  I know this because I made her up in my mind, and her mother hates the f-bomb almost as much as she hates meatloaf.

Here's a scene (absolutely true, although I still don't really believe what I saw) I witnessed in the grocery store the other day:

A little boy, not more than six or seven years old, is buckled into the child seat of his shopping cart while his mother loads groceries onto the counter.  He has a blue stain around his mouth and a lonely lollipop stick stuck to the front of his tiny Polo shirt.  He sees a picture of the President on the cover of a magazine and points, "Mom, look!  It's Obama!"
The woman sighs as she hefts a sack of potatoes, "I see, honey."
"I hate Obama, right mom?"
"Yes, honey."

What the hell?!  I wanted to scream, "He's five goddamn years old!  The only thing he should hate right now is broccoli!"

But I didn't scream.  I gritted my teeth and fought back the angry bile and squeezed the shit out of my Charmin.  Although, I guess technically it wasn't mine yet, since I hadn't paid for it.

And therein lies the rub (not the toilet paper, the stuff up in italics).  Parents recoil in terror when a little girl says "fuck" or "shit," but we bandy about words like "love" and "hate" without thinking.  Dad hates the bill collectors.  Mom loves Tom Brady's ass in those white pants footballers wear.  Mom hates cop shows.  Dad loves beer.  Timmy hates getting his hair cut.  Little Susie loves her Barbies more than anything in the world.

We teach our kids that any positive or negative feelings we have towards someone or something equate to love and hate.  We don't do it on purpose, but we do it.  Love and Hate are both huge words which carry connotations which affect everyone in the world.  Wars are built on those words.  Murder.  Marriage.  Family.  Children.

"Please don't cuss around my kids," I said.  At least eight million times since I became a father.  I was scared for my babies' ears.  They're all innocent and beautiful and not yet corrupted by the world.  But now I see it differently.  Fuck, shit, ass, bitch, damn, hell, dick, etc... these words are not going to corrupt my babies.  The only power those words have is the power we give them.  They'll learn them and use them on the playground no matter what we do.  They like them so so so much, because we have made them sacred.

Really though, the words that we should be making sacred are words like Love and Hate.  These are the words we should teach our children to use sparingly.  "Fuck" is just an expletive, "Love" is dangerous.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Times... They are a-Changin'

Hey, all you internet people, how the hell is it going?  Good, I hope.

If you're a regular reader of the blog, you may have noticed that I've recently changed some little things.  Just so you know, I plan on changing more.  I'm going to make this thing mine; hopefully I'll turn it into something I can be proud of.  We'll see how it goes.

I've been a horrible blogger for quite some time now.  I'm sorry about that.  I would love to be one of those people who has a new post every week (or even multiple times every week) but whenever I hop on blogger to start writing, I realize I don't have anything to say.

It's my own fault.

Since I published my first book, The River Runes (which is free this week on Amazon until Friday) I've been trying way too hard to make sure that I don't say or do anything that is going to offend or piss off readers (or potential readers or reviewers or other authors or baristas or pizza makers or monkeys or guys in prison or girls in prison or random Presidents or etc...). 

I got scared off when another author, who had several books out already and was doing pretty decent sales, told me that I better not ever offend anyone.  "Other authors might tank your reviews, or start taunting you in forums and stuff" and "I've got cyber bullies after me because I gave a two star review..."  Let me tell you, as a newbie without a single clue, I was well and truly frightened.  So I deleted the low star reviews I had done, and did my best to be all sugar and rainbows for the next two years.

Sugar and rainbows are damn boring.

So I stopped posting, despite high promises.  I didn't have anything nice to say most days, so I didn't say anything at all.  For months.  Again and again and again.

Sorry about that.

Another problem I've run into, as I've tried to figure out what I should post about as a writer, is that most writing topics have been covered ad nauseam by every writer and wannabe on the internet.  And the truth is, as a reader of writing blogs, I don't read multiple blogs on the same topic unless it's controversial.  For most writing topics, (editing, cover art, not making one-dimensional characters, etc...) there are no differing opinions.

No one is saying, "Fuck editing your work.  Just publish your first draft and watch the reviews be awesome anyway."

So it's tough to find something to write about writing that I believe people will want to read.  There are things I want to say, but I have been unsure of how to say them. As I already admitted, I don't want the Angry Authors and Reviewer's Cartel coming after me.

But I've decided I don't care anymore.  I'm going to post what I want to post about, and if it pisses someone off, they are free to not read my blog just as often as they like.  I'll blog about writing when I have something to say about writing.  I might talk about my puppy, Amelia (who is cuter than your puppy, and every other puppy, ever), or my kids, or delicious coffee, or I might review a book, or social issues I care about, or whatever I damn-well feel like blogging about.

So yeah.  I'm not promising a schedule yet, but I'm aiming to start with once a week and we'll see where it goes from there.  I just want to have fun with it, and I hope someone else might enjoy it as well.

Thanks for reading.

Friday, May 31, 2013

On The Edge Excerpt

First, I want to say welcome to all the new readers of the blog, I'm very excited about how the giveaway went and I can't say how much I appreciate all the tweets and Facebook shares and other types of support everyone has shown. You're all my heroes! :)

I've already sent off emails to the winners, and I just want to say congratulations!  I hope you guys and gals all like your SWAG.  I'm especially excited about the custom stuff, I would love it if I could see pics of the Gavin English stuff in use at some time in the future.

And now, since I've been busily working rather than thinking of something to write a blog about, I'm going to post an excerpt from the newly released, On The Edge (Gavin English Stories).

In 2002, Olivia Teeter turned fourteen years old. Her birthday party was small. Very small. Only her mother showed up, and she drank too much brandy and passed out before they could light candles for the cake.
It wasn't that Olivia couldn't make friends—she was a cute girl, with short, sporty hair and a great sense of humor (by fourteen, Olivia was convinced that her sense of humor, and most of the other things she liked about herself, had been passed down by her father). No, the reason that Olivia sat eating cake by herself in front of the tv was that she didn't know any kids her age.
She was home-schooled because her parents mistrusted the public school system. Too many kids with guns and teachers with dirty minds and school lunches filled with gluten and processed sugars. So, for five or six hours a day, five days a week, Olivia sat at a lone desk in her dad's trailer while he taught her about Science and History and English.
Once her slice of cake was finished, Olivia rinsed off her plate and sliced a piece for her father. She knew he wouldn't eat it, but she wanted him to know that she was thinking of him.
Her dad was mysophobic, so terrified of germs and getting sick that by her ninth birthday, he had moved into his own sterilized trailer in their back yard. For twelve to fifteen hours every day, Chris Teeter cleaned that tiny trailer with bleach and a handful of other toxic chemicals. Every week, he filled his own garbage can with rubber gloves and sponges and those thin, white hospital face masks. None of it was ever used more than once.
But Olivia loved him. Her father didn't cut into her every chance he got, like her mother seemed to. He never called her stupid or told her she was worthless. In fact, he made her feel like the most special person in the world. Olivia was the only one allowed in her dad's trailer, and the only one that he would allow himself to touch. He could still hug her, brush her hair, tickle her til she was afraid she might pee her pants. Chris Teeter never missed a chance to tell his daughter that he loved her and was proud of her.
That's why, even though his trailer smelled bad from all the cleaners, Olivia loved to visit with him there. In the trailer, she could pretend that her mom was nice, or that she didn't even exist, or that she was the one who locked herself away from the world.
As she opened the back door, her mother yelled from the living room, her voice slow and slurred from drinking, “Tha's right, 'Livia. Go on out to yer daddy. Tell him how mean and drunk I am. Tell him you love him like you alwaysss do. But don't f'get to tell him his wife is still here, doing all the hard fuck'n work while he'sss out in that gordamm bubble he built...”
Olivia rushed through the open door and slammed it behind her. She didn't understand why her mom had to be like that, why she had to be so angry with her dad all the time. He couldn't help the way he was. It was in his brain, and you don't always get to choose the things that happen in your brain.
She hurried across the back yard with her dad's slice of cake balanced safely in both hands. When she reached the front door, the smell of bleach was overpowering like always, and there was a note sticking out of the doorjamb. Olivia frowned. When her dad put notes out like this, it usually meant he wasn't up for company and had probably spent the whole night cleaning something nobody could see.
The young girl sighed and pulled the slip of paper from the door.

-My dearest Olivia and June,

I'm sorry for being broken. I'm sorry for so many things. Unfortunately, I know that you will never understand how much I have loved you both.

June, I wish I could have been the husband you deserved. I hope that one day we'll meet again in a world where I don't have to worry about things like I do in this one. Maybe there I will be what you need and deserve.

Olivia, you are an entire world of joy, wrapped in a glowing smile and knobby knees. One day, I hope you look back at the time we spent together and know that I couldn't have done that for anyone that I didn't love with every fiber of my being. Don't grow up to be afraid like me. And never settle for a man that is less than perfect, because you are perfect.

I love you both,

Tears covered her face before the door was even opened. She knew that everything was different. Worse than before. She dropped the cake, barely noticing as the plate exploded on the ground at her feet. She stepped inside.
It was nearly four hours later when her mother found her out in that trailer, sobbing with her arms wrapped around her father's legs.
June screamed when she saw her husbands face, purple and swollen, his tongue dry and sitting just outside his mouth. The noose was made of electrical cords, wrapped in rubber gloves so that the cords never touched his skin.

As always, thanks for reading,
buh bye then

Monday, May 20, 2013

Want a Kindle Fire HD? or I'm Launching "On The Edge!"

Today is the day, folks!  There's a lot going on that I want you to know about, so I'll do my best not to forget anything.

First, today I am launching the second Gavin English novella, On The Edge and you can get it right now for your Kindle app or device for only $1.99 by clicking This Link.  :)

Also, to celebrate the launch of the new novella, the first Gavin English story, To The Bone is free for your Kindle all this week.  Go get your copy right away, and please help out by letting your friends know.  Here's Another Link Just In Case You Missed It ;)

And to go along with all this Gavin English goodness, we're having a big ol' giveaway this week, right here on the blog.  There are a lot of ways to enter for your chances at one of the prizes, so go through the list and do all you can.  The more you participate, the better your chances of winning!

What can we win, Ken?

Hmm, well for starters: a 7" Kindle Fire HD with custom On The Edge hard case to keep it safe.

Also up for grabs:

Two $25 Amazon gift cards
Gavin English book covers messenger bag
On The Edge cigarette/money case
and one On The Edge mouse pad

Plus to up the stakes a bit, if we can get On The Edge into the Kindle Top Ten Paid this week, I will add a second 7" Kindle Fire HD to the giveaway list so we can have another winner!

Here is the Rafflecopter, get your entries in now and come back every day for more chances to win!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, May 16, 2013

"On The Edge" Launch and Giveaway Next Week!!

Agh!  I suck at blogging all the time, I know it.  Sorry.  However, I think you'll forgive me this time.


Because next week I'm launching the next Gavin English novel.  So I've been writing and editing an writing and editing and writing... you get the picture.

I know, I'm supposed to be doing that stuff all the time, right? 

Yep, and I have been.  But in the last few weeks the juices have been flowing like crazy.  I've finished the novella, On The Edge (Gavin English Stories), started two new books (both horror related, both pretty exciting), and... AND...  AND! I've been working on promotion for the launch of On The Edge.

But Ken, I thought you sucked at promotion (awkward question mark implied)?

Oh, Timmy (yes, today I've named you Timmy.  I think we're both okay with it) I do suck at promotion.  But I'm trying.  To The Bone (The first Gavin English novella, just in case you didn't know that already) is going to be free all next week in celebration of the launch of the second novella (again, it's called On The Edge.  Just in case you missed it) and I've submitted it to lots of mailing lists and websites that tell folks about free ebooks.  Hopefully, a few folks find their way to the novella, read it really fast because it's awesome, and then click the link in the book that will take them to buy the sequel (which will be only $1.99!).

So next week, you can get To The Bone for free from Amazon (but I mean, if you wanna read it now, you can go snatch it up HERE for your Kindle device or Kindle app for only $1.99.  (My new puppy, Amelia-picture below- says it's totally worth it)

Who can argue with that?

Anyhow, other awesome things that are happening next week... hmm what to say...  Oh yeah!  Remember the last time I blogged (like eight million cups of coffee ago) and I said something about a Kindle Fire?

Oh yeah, you totes did, Ken.  What about a Kindle Fire?

I'm giving one away.  For the launch of the new Gavin English novella, I'm holding a giveaway.  There will be a 7" Kindle Fire HD with a custom, On The Edge hard case to help keep it safe.  There is also gonna be some other awesome custom stuff, but I'm saving that for next week's promo blog.  There will be pictures and everything!

So that's probably it for now.  Come back next week.  Tell your friends.  Be awesome.

Thanks for reading,
buh bye then

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Why Go Indie?

This is a blog post I did a while back, for one of the blogs that hosted during my book tour of The River Runes.   I'm re-posting it now because I still agree with the things I said, and I think I have a lot of new readers that may have missed the tour. Plus, The River Runes has a new cover!

Why Go Indie?

I like being in control. That isn't the only reason, but it is certainly the reason that pushed me to self publish rather than go the traditional route. I love the fact that I get to choose my own cover art, title, launch dates, etc...

I searched the web and read a thousand articles and blogs before I made my decision. It wasn't easy, but once I chose, I was happy with my choice. Other than half a dozen hasty query letters I sent out the very second I finished my first draft of The River Runes, (before I had read anything about the publishing world) I haven't done anything to reach a publisher. I have no problems with traditional publishing and I may go that route with some of my novels in the next few years, but for now I love being indie.

Another reason for me to self publish is the challenge. I love to be challenged. Not only do I have to write the words, I also have to make sure the book is edited and formatted and worth reading. Cover art, marketing, how much to charge... it's all up to me to decide how it gets done. I'm still learning and testing the waters in order to find the best ways to reach readers.

There are bumps in the road, for sure. Being self published means there is no advance, no editor, and in my case, no agent to help get your work out there. If an indie wants their book in stores, they have to find the stores that are willing, and jump through the hoops to get their titles there.

Those are all just pieces of the self publishing package, though. We are living in a future where an author can write their book, the way they want it written, and publish it in whatever formats they choose. The ebook has shaken up the publishing world, and I wanted to get in on the chaos before it was too late.

Plus, it's fun.

Thanks for reading,
buh bye then

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

"To The Bone" excerpt

I haven't posted an excerpt in a very long time, so I'm going to post one today.

First, though, I want to let folks know that the second Gavin English novella is nearly finished and I'm hoping to publish in the next 4-5 weeks.  Because of this, I've pulled To The Bone from other platforms and signed it up with KDP Select.  I wasn't going to do Select again, but I've decided not to rule anything out until I get a little more shelf space out there.  With the launch of the second Gavin English story, I'll be making To the Bone free for five days on in the hopes of finding a few new readers for the series.  I might even have a big giveaway (did someone say Kindle Fire?) but I won't have all that info until I get closer to launch.

So, now for the excerpt from To The Bone (Gavin English Stories #1):

She ran through the lifeless park faster than she had ever run in her life. The cold night air pressed against her tear-soaked cheeks like sandpaper, forcing her to wipe her face with her sleeves as she went. He was behind her somewhere, but she no longer heard the sound of his pounding feet. There was a stitch of pain raging in her chest, and another in her side, as her muscles cramped in protest.
She slid herself under the old jungle gym, hoping that the orange glow from the old streetlights around the playground might keep him from coming after her. She swallowed and gasped and gulped in the air selfishly, trying to refill her aching lungs and give her body a chance to recover. Wood chips dug into her skin wherever it touched the ground, but she refused to move a muscle.
She was startled as a breeze spun the merry-go-round at the opposite end of the playground, making it creek. Her heart was a drum line, crashing within her chest. The loudest noise she heard was her pulse, throbbing deep in her ears. Keeping her body as still as possible, she looked up and down the street she had come from. There was nothing to see. Yet. Maybe, he had given up.
A stick cracked somewhere off to her left, making her gasp and jump, slamming her head against the underside of the jungle gym. She bit her lip as stars blurred her vision. She wanted to yell or scream or cuss, but if he was close by, her only chance was to conceal her hiding place. She gingerly ran her fingers along her scalp where she smacked her head. A trickle of blood was soaking her hair and her fingers came away warm and wet.
Dread. It was a word she didn't think she had ever used, but the only one that seemed to describe what she was feeling in that moment.
Then a pair of headlights turned onto the road which outlined the west edge of the park. The engine sounded soft, and the lights were bright. In those lights, she saw her salvation. She would run to the street, wave down the car, and get the driver to give her a ride to the police station. Even if he was hiding in the park, close to the playground, there was no way he could beat her to the fence if she ran with everything she had.
The car was getting closer. She took in a deep, steadying breath through her nose and scooted forward using her elbows and knees. Carefully, she inched her way out from under the jungle gym. Once out, she climbed to her feet and dusted the wood chips from her knees. She flinched and looked around in a panic as the debris rained softly to the ground. No movement in the park. No sound.
The car was only a hundred yards away. It was now or never.
She counted herself down silently.Three.
Before her first step landed, something above her snatched a handful of her hair and she screamed, all thoughts of running lost. With no time to react she was yanked off of her feet, pulled over the bright red railing of the jungle gym, and slammed to the hard plastic grating next to the swinging bridge. More pain. More stars.
He pinned her body with one knee on her sternum and the other on her stomach, and clapped his hand down over her mouth. "Ssshhhh, Jennifer," he whispered, bringing his nose only an inch from hers. His breath was hot and wet on her face. His eyes shone wide and hungry in the pallid light of the oncoming car, and there was only a sliver of green bordering his overly-dilated pupils.
She took in shallow breaths through her nose. He held her still and silent until the car passed. It felt like an eternity.
Once the car was safely beyond the park, he gave her a grin that made her skin prickle. A second without his hand over her mouth, and then something rough and wet took its place. The smell was awful and overpowering and with her next breath the world turned gray.

Thanks for reading, I hope you liked enough enough to go check it out!  To The Bone is only $1.99 at Amazon right now! :)

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Stuff and Things

I've been working a lot lately, writing a lot, and I moved.  Craziness abounds, but I didn't want to go without blogging for too long.  Who knows who might miss old Ken, huh?! 

So here are some things I've noticed lately, that you might be interested in:

An article about libraries and their continued importance to the world is Right Here

News about space!

Neil Gaiman continues to be awesome:

J.A. Konrath has sold over 1 million ebooks!
Read his blog about it!

And a tragedy in the Lindsey home...  During a routine trimming exercise, my beard was wounded badly.  I did the merciful thing and put it out of its misery.  The good news is, we can rebuild him.  We have the technology.

Have a great week!
Thanks for reading,
buh bye then.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Selling Yourself

It's been a very long time since I posted here, and I'm pretty sure it had been quite awhile without a post before that one as well.  There are lots of reasons, but most are just incidental and shouldn't stop me from blogging once a week or so. 

-Full time job (you know, for a roof and food and pants and all of that stuff you need once in a while)
-Also, I've been spending most of my writing time trying to write.  I have three manuscripts that are well on their way, but also nowhere near finished.  I'm excited about all of them, but I keep jumping from one to the other when the mood strikes.

But really, these things should not stop me from posting here, or Facebook or Twitter or blah blah, etc...  I've been remiss in all of my social networking duties for quite some time.

And I think I know why.

I'm not fond of selling myself.  I feel bad when I post on Facebook or Twitter, telling people about my work.  Telling them why and where and how they should buy something that I made feels like begging.  I'm not a huge fan of writing about myself at all, especially when I'm not sure it's something people want to hear.

I'd rather write about other people, the folks that live in my head.  They're all exciting and have stories that I'm happy to share.  The deal with magic and evil and zombies and robots, expensive booze and stalkers and cannibals.

But me, I read the news and I watch Scrubs so much that I know pretty much every episode by heart.  I work a normal job, and eat bagels whenever I get the chance.  Oh, and I write.

I write fiction.  I love fiction.  I have no problem telling people to go buy a book that I love.  Neil Gaiman, Stephen King, any random thing that i pick up to read on the Kindle app on my phone.  If I like it, I tell people about it, and I'm not ashamed.  But it's not the same as telling them to read something that I wrote.

Of course I think they should read it, I wrote it!  But do I want them to read it because it's worth reading, or because it's mine?

Both, but how do I say that?  That's what I'm trying to figure out here.  How do I tell someone about my own book, without feeling like I'm begging them to support my writing habit?  If you have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them.  But until I get it figured out, I'll just keep trying different things.

This latest thing, you know, not saying anything to anyone, not even letting people know that I still exist and am still writing...  It doesn't work at all.  I don't recommend it for anyone.

So, it's on to something new.  Maybe I'll rent billboards and put my face on them, or find the newest, greatest viral marketing scheme and put it to use.  Or maybe I'll just try to keep in touch with people, and let them know what I'm up to.

Yeah, that sounds pretty good.  I think I'll try that.

Let me know what works for you, so I can steal your idea. :)

Oh yeah, just in case you didn't know, I have two books out right now.  One is a young adult fantasy about faeries that eat people.  I'm hoping the second book in the series will be out this year.  The other is a novella about a private detective who loves strip clubs and finds himself on the search for a cannibal that is terrorizing and killing teen girls.

They're pretty good and they're cheap, you should go buy them.

The River Runes at
To The Bone at

Thanks for reading,
buh bye then.

See you next week.