Whiter Shade of Pale

The above picture was taken roughly five or six years ago. At the time it was taken, I had already started my novella Whiter Shade of Pale.

I finally finished it last week.

I have no idea what made this novella such a struggle to finish. I had the plot and ending from damn near the moment the idea came to me. And yet, every few months I would pick it up, try to finish it, and fail miserably.

At one point I had lost about 2k words in a file backup somehow. I was so pissed I thought I would never finish it, then a year later I stumbled upon a backup in a weird place that had the missing words. So it was back to the races then.

There was even one time that it had been so long since I had worked on it, that I forgot what perspective I was writing in, and pecked out about 3k words in 1st person, when the rest was in 3rd! It was a struggle unlike any other project I have ever had, and still, I couldn’t tell you why.

But now it’s done. Well, the first draft at least. And even though the entire time I have been writing this I have considered its name Whiter Shade of Pale, I am thinking it will see the light of day as Fake Empire. But that remains to be seen.

Moral of the story: damn it, I will finish! It just might take longer than anticipated some times.

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Deadline: January

I have been hemming and hawing too long. It’s time to make a real dive into my writing career, to really give it a go and see if I have what it takes. So to that end I am setting myself a deadline of January. By then I will have my writings ready to go, covers designed, advertising plotted, and release strategy developed.

The tentative plan as of today is that each year I will release a trio of ebooks in the spring, and a trio in the fall. They will be shorter, novella length roughly, and will then be bundled together into a full length print book. Some will be chained novellas, others will be collections of short stories. In the summer, I will release at least one novel or novella, something not tied to the fall or spring releases.

I have a huge back log of work begging to see the light of day, enough to put out stuff for about the next three years under this schedule. And now it is time to finally pull the trigger on it. Wish me luck!

Cutting Class

Partnering with Seville Basement Cuts, I am starting a childhood literacy program called Cutting Class. The idea is that each child who is getting their hair cut gets to select a book to read. They are encouraged to read it aloud, with the stylist there to help them with any words they have trouble with. At the end, they get to take the book home with them.

To this end I have been collecting book and cash donations, and have so far acquired what I am guessing is close to 200 books. They are currently ranging from ‘learn to reads’ up to books like ‘Babysitters Club’ and ‘Hardy Boys.’ The goal is to have a wide enough variety that any child between 5 and 12 can find something enjoyable to read. We want to encourage reading, and help them grow their confidence in reading aloud.

If this goes as well as I am hoping, the goal is to expand it to other salons within Montgomery, and then perhaps even some of the surrounding towns! If you would like to help, contact me at talesbybob@gmail.com

Whats Happening In The B-Hive!

As usual, its been busy around these parts! Turns out buying a house has a tendency to eat up a lot of your free time, go figure! That said, things have been progressing nicely.

First, I started a new podcast, Plug Ugly Radio. A monthly podcast bringing you music from across the Southeast, it covers punk/metal/rock music mostly, and can be heard most places you get your podcasts from. It’s been a ton of fun to work on so far, so I can’t wait to see how this progresses.

Second, Books, Beards, Booze is moving right along. We broke 700 monthly downloads in June, which has me so happy! Our goal is to break 1k by the end of the year, and I think we can do it!

On Patreon, it’s almost breaking 50 bucks a month now! That pays for the podcast hosting fees, and goes a long way to paying all my webhosting as well! Hop on there and consider showing a little love, and in return you will get access to a number of behind the scenes videos, some free games, that sort of stuff!

It’s been hard getting back into the swing of writing to be honest. I finished up Marsh 7, and since then I have been idly working on Whiter Shade of Pale, a novella I have been working on off and on for over 5 years now. It’s…going. I am feeling the itch to start a new novel, but I haven’t decided what to tackle. Until I do, I think I am just going to feel restless and angsty about it all. Fantasy? Steampunk? We’ll see. I am settled enough in the new house that I feel ready to get back into the groove, so there’s that.

Anyway, like I said, lots going on, lots happening! Hope all is well with you guys, and hopefully I’ll talk to you all again soon!

News from the B-Hive, and 100 Days!

Sorry for the long delay! I made the mistake of buying a house and assuming all would go well haha! Instead it has been a bit of a slow motion train wreck, but at last there is a light visible at the end of the tunnel! For example, my bar (pictured above) is almost fully set up! So at the very least I can drink the stress away!

First, my 100 days. It’s gone very mixed, but the move is 90% to blame for that. I have done well about not drinking booze, and not one drop of soda has crossed these lips. As for food, not having a fridge for the first week and a half threw a wrench in the works, but today is a testament to the fact I am back on track. And even when I was having to eat out, I was trying to do better than I would in the past. Working out and writing on my off days hasn’t exactly been happening, but never fear, I have been getting exercise in the form of moving boxes and furniture. I have at least one more week of moving boxes, but then I will be able to resume my regularly scheduled routines.

Writingwise, I am allllllmost done with the 7th Howard Marsh novella. I will finish it this week. I am gearing up to finally get these published, just have to pick the month I want to start releasing. Tentatively I am thinking October, but we shall see.

The Books, Beards, Booze podcast is going great. Steadily growing, and we are really getting into the groove of things. And the Patreon is up to just over 30 bucks a month! Getting close to the point where this whole shebang doesn’t cost me money anymore! I also had the opportunity to be on Realms: A Worldbuilding Podcast recently, which was a blast. I am on episode 3, so go check that out!

Thank you for being patient! Expect more regular postings now that the move is almost over!

 

 

Thank You!!!

So as you may know, we’ve really been putting in some effort on trying to grow our podcast, Books, Beards, Booze. And thanks to all you great people, it is really starting to pay off!

For roughly our first year we averaged about 175ish downloads a month. Each episode was averaging maybe 15 listens, when you factored out each of us hosts listening lol. It was consistent, which was good, as it meant we weren’t really losing people. But we weren’t growing.

So we buckled down, improved our sound, and started promoting. Creative Consultant Tonya and I have been scouring the web, spreading the word, and trying to not be too annoying. And wonder of wonders, it’s starting to pay off!

This month we broke 600 downloads!!! 600!!! We more than trippled where we were at just two months ago! And it’s thanks to people like you, for helping to spread the word and supporting us!

We are so excited to see where we go from here, and have lots of rad stuff planned to bring forth. So cheers to you, our amazing fans, and thanks for coming along on the ride with us!

Books, Beards, Booze Summer Reading Recommendations!

The gang sat down and figured out what you should be reading this summer! Here are all the links to buy, but if you want to hear our reasons why you need to listen to the ‘Summer Book List’ episode, out 4/24/19.

Classics

Redwall by Brian Jacques
Magician by Raymond E Feist

Farenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

Audible

Summerland by Hannu Rajaniemi

The Dispatcher by John Scalzi
Self-Published

The Game Bird by Aidan R Walsh

Spellmonger by Terry Mancour

Beyond Hades by Luke Romyn
Coming Soon

A Brightness Long Ago by Guy Gavriel Kay (May 14)

Jade War by Fonda Lee (July 23)

The Testaments by Margaret Atwood (Sept 10)

Something We Recently Read

The Spirit Thief by Rachel Aaron

Seven Blades in Black by Sam Sykes

The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove by Christopher Moore