The anticipation beginsImmortal-Edge-of-World-Low-Res-Cover

About a year ago I realized it was probably not a good idea to go around talking about The Immortal Trilogy when I only had Immortal and Hellenic Immortal to show off.  So I sat down and did the thing writers sometimes do and wrote a third novel, and I called it Immortal at the Edge of the World.

And then I waited.

Oh, sure, I edited too, but mostly there was the waiting.

Right, and the cover design.  I had to go over that.  And sure, okay, there was Sapphire Blue, which came out during the waiting, and also Surviving Hector and The Immortal Chronicles.  

But, you know, mostly?  Waiting.

And then I got this graphic and I knew the waiting was nearly over:

gene_edge promo copyYes, that says October 2, 2014, which is only six weeks away!

Let’s celebrate!

Video trailer

Of course I’ve already read it, so we’re probably celebrating slightly different things, but that’s okay.  Here’s something we can both enjoy together: Adam’s first video trailer!

CLICK HERE BECAUSE I CAN’T IMBED THIS FOR SOME REASON

Phauxcon

Also, because we’re just bursting with exciting news around here, I will be the special guest this year at Phauxcon, a writing convention in Philadelphia taking place October 3-5.  You can read about it and register here.  Much more on that in the coming weeks.

Reviewers:

Immortal at the Edge of the World is now available on request from NetGalley.  The listing is here. 

There will also be a blog tour.  If you are interested in participating in the tour, the sign-up document is here.

have you joined the Cult of the Immortal yet?

 

Follow-up: Huffington Post article gets some conversations goingImage 14

The article I wrote on FridayPlease Stop– for the Huffington Post, has triggered a few discussions and a good deal of welcome attention.  I’d like to thank the many people who have taken a minute to tell me how much they enjoyed the article, and also to direct everyone to two places I know of (aside from the HuffPo page itself) where people are talking about the issues raised in the piece.

First, there is The Passive Voice, which reposted excerpts from the article on Sunday morning and has had a nice discussion going since.

Second, there is this:

Screenshot 2014-08-24 18.24.31This was shared on Anne Rice’s fan page on Facebook, and brought a great deal of positive attention to the article.  Plus a lot of great comments.

join my mailing list

 

Amazon vs. Hachette

Image 14So, funny story.  Over the past couple of days I’ve been reading different articles loosely pertaining to the Amazon vs. Hachette dispute, and they were really starting to annoy me.  Not the dispute itself so much as the depiction of authors who have not been published by the “big 5″.  There’s a lot of disdain out there, and it’s being heaped on by people who should know better.  Like this from Laura Miller (a Hachette author) at Salon:

Yet Amazon does have its partisans — specifically, the authors who use its self-publishing programs and whose books are published by its imprints. Nearly 8,000 of these signed a verbose petition at Change.org calling for Hachette to capitulate. (If there were ever a document to suggest that self-published writers are insufficiently edited, it’s this one, even though it begins with a promise to be concise.)

This is Amazon’s core constituency, one whose loyalty is fueled by gratitude for the technological innovation that has permitted them to publish their e-books and also by loathing for the publishing “oligopoly” that has denied them publication the old-fashioned way…

…These and other attempts to cast the mega-retailer as a nimble, innovative yet embattled outsider allied to “the little guy” — gestures that strike most observers as ludicrous — nevertheless ring true to self-publishers, who have been known to describe the five largest traditional book publishers as a “cartel.” Amazon, in their view, has rescued them from the obscurity to which they’d been abandoned by big-time “legacy” publishing…

Or a couple of days earlier when Ted Thompson–an author with Little, Brown (a Hachette imprint)–was asked whether being published by Little, Brown or self-publishing made more sense.  He answered this on his blog, which you may be surprised to discover is being run by his publisher.  His response is astonishingly naive, and mentions (twice) that publishers have money!  My god, no, really?  This gem is particularly priceless:

There’s just no replacement for not being broke. And an advance allows you, on a very practical level, a chance to get started on the next thing. It buys you time.

Yes, Ted, advances are AWESOME, and I would love to have one.  Here’s the thing: nobody outside of the big 5 pays advances.  Nobody.  And it’s touch-and-go with them too.  Self-published authors aren’t looking at advances and saying naaah, I’m cool.  We’re looking at the best of our available options, which doesn’t include anything you have apparently experienced in your writing career.

The story?

Right, so I told you this was a funny story.  The funny story is that I decided to write a Huffington Post piece on self-publishing and the morons who don’t seem to understand what’s actually happening in today’s marketplace.  So I did, and then I sent it in, and I waited.  Usually, I have to wait 24-48 hours for something of mine to go live there.  This one went up in three hours.  By then I was already out drinking margaritas because it was Friday night.

All right, that wasn’t my funniest story ever.

The article is called Please Stop:

If you are an author who happens to be published by one of the “big 5″ houses, I offer you my congratulations. You are truly fortunate, and hopefully also a good writer, although one does not guarantee the other. I would be happy to hear your perspective on Amazon and Hachette, which I’m sure is interesting.

However: if the subject of self-publishing comes up in the course of this expression of opinion, you probably need to shut up. It is very likely you don’t know what you’re talking about.

You can read the entire piece here

At long last

The latest episode of The Immortal Chronicles is here at last, after delays caused by the unexpected death of my computer and the discovery that the story was going to end up being longer than anticipated.GeneDoucette_ImmortalandtheMadman1400

Immortal and the Madman is long enough to fall under the heading of novella.  (Actually, based on the word counts I’ve been looking at, so were the first two stories.)  It comes in at about 24,000 words.  For some perspective, Immortal and Hellenic Immortal both check in at just shy of 100,000 words and both Fixer and the upcoming Immortal at the Edge of the World check in at around 103,000, and Sapphire Blue at around 84,000.

You might not have needed to know that–word count is more of a writer-porn sort of thing–but there it is.  More to the point, I accidentally wrote a quarter of a novel in about six weeks.  (That is definitely writer-porn.)

Anyway!  Volume 3 of The Immortal Chronicles can now be yours!  Buy it, read it, review it, tell your friends!

Immortal and the Madman

And if you’re new to The Immortal Chronicles don’t forget to pick up the other two short stories in the series: Immortal at Sea and Hard-Boiled Immortal.

GeneDoucette_ImmortalatSea1400GeneDoucette_HardBoiledImmortal1400

Publication dateGeneDoucette_ImmortalandtheMadman1400

Mark your calendars!  The publication date for the third book in The Immortal Chronicles is August 4th!  I’ve officially reached novella-length with this story.  I hope nobody minds having a few extra words from me, and a slightly higher price tag.  If it helps, you also get to meet an ancestor of a certain person you may have encountered elsewhere.

GoodReads

The page for Immortal and the Madman is officially up now on GoodReads.

You can add it right here.

I’ll just put this here

Are you excited yet?  Immortal at the Edge of the World will be available on the no-longer-so-distant date of October 2, 2014!  Before that there will be blog tours, at least one convention (details forthcoming), reviews and excerpts.  In the meantime there will be more Immortal Chronicles short stories to keep Adam busy and out of the drink.  You can also hang out in the Cult of the Immortal where Adam stops by all the time, when he’s not on Tumblr or Twitter.

All of which is to say I will have much, much more to share with  you soon, but until then, here’s the full cover of Immortal at the Edge of the World.

Adobe Photoshop PDF

Seven years

I need you to understand that I didn’t think of my laptop as old.  I felt the same way about it as I do about myself, basically, which is that I’m not getting any older, my kids are just catching up. I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who feels this way about themselves and their laptops.

2014-07-12 18.48.05

The white spots are where I wore the paint off the keys

Well okay, maybe not their laptops.

Mine was a black plastic Macbook that was built sometime in 2006 and purchased by me sometime in 2007.  For seven years we went basically everywhere together, including to work and home every day with the machine in the bag on my back as I biked 35 miles round trip.  This was no small thing because the computer and the charger weighed six pounds combined.

I had a few scares.  Like the time in 2011 when I realized the battery was swelling, or the two times the power cord died, but the computer just kept on going.

Signs of imminent demise

There were some indications that black plastic MacBooks were perhaps not meant to endure daily use for that long.  The screen had a nicotine-yellow haze to it that had nothing to do with nicotine.  If I kept it on my lap for too long without anything between the bottom of the computer and the top of my thighs I was running a legitimate risk of second degree burns.  If I opened up too many windows (or just watched a video) the fan kicked in like a jet engine, sometimes making more noise than whatever audio was coming from the computer.

People who saw it couldn’t help but comment, and not in a “wow that’s quite a laptop” sort of way, more like what you say to people who are walking a very old dog.  I didn’t think much of this until the day I was sitting at a table in an Au Bon Pain and a guy stopped by to say how cool it was that I was holding onto this old computer, and he had one too, and it was like we were talking about antique cars except nobody told me mine was an antique.  When he left my first thought was what’s wrong with that guy and my second was, maybe it’s time to get a new computer.

The end?

Then it stopped working.  Or it stopped getting power or something.  I turned it on, and the screen popped in for a good forty seconds while it tried to load, and then it turned off again.  This happened on a Monday night.  The following morning, I turned it on again and it powered up and made it all the way past the sign-in screen, which was long enough for me to see a black X across the battery symbol.  So that day I researched black X-es across battery symbols to see if that meant anything, and concluded that I needed a new battery.

2014-07-12 18.48.15

a close-up of that keyboard. I was a big fan of the space bar, clearly

That night, I biked home, showered and changed, grabbed the laptop, the car, and my wife, and headed for the nearest Apple store to buy a new battery.

To give you an idea of how old my computer actually was, when I pulled it out in the store to show the helpful Apple person–whose name I think might have been Brienne–what kind of battery I needed, three things happened.

 

 

  1. Brienne took two steps back and asked if the machine could even turn on
  2. Her supervisor came over from clear across the store, possibly trying not to actually sprint to us, to notify Brienne that this was probably a “vintage” and she should check the serial number
  3. Brienne expressed her firm belief that the only place to get a battery for this device was on eBay, but she would check just in case.

I asked what vintage meant, because it sounded like a good thing, but it turns out that’s not a good thing when you’re talking about a computer.  Vintage means it’s so old they have no way of diagnosing it or fixing it, and are pretty sure they don’t want to touch it because it might have ick, and anyway nobody there knows how it might function.  Lamb’s blood and motor oil, probably.

With the laptop still open and infecting the shiny new Mac products on the table, incredibly, an Apple employee appeared from the back–and/or from 2007– with the battery I needed.  In the right color and everything.

*   *   *

Actual conversation:

Brienne: I thought for sure if we had it, it would only be in white.

Me: Did you honestly think I cared what color the battery was?

*   *   *

We popped the battery in, and my ancient computer limped back to life, and there was much rejoicing.  I explained that my readers will be happy because I promised them a short story by now (yeah, so, Immortal and the Madman is gonna be late) and Brienne asked if I was secretly famous, and I said haha, so secretly famous even the people who I’m famous with don’t think I’m famous, and my wife piped up with “His mother does,” and haha again, and that’s why I brought her.

Anyway.  After that I turned off my monster and went to look at what computer I was going to have to save up for pretty soon, and a helpful fellow named Zach showed me the options and asked how much memory I needed, so we pulled the beast out again and turned it on again to find out.  I’m telling you this only so you understand that TWICE in the Apple store I turned my computer on and TWICE it worked.

The end

Then I got home with my old computer with the new battery, tired and hungry but happy that I didn’t have to worry about the expense of a new computer yet, and then I pulled the laptop out to catch up on all the exciting soft core porn that is my Tumblr feed and… it wouldn’t turn on.  At all.  This wasn’t the “oh look, the screen lit up annnnnnd now it’s gone” thing from before, this was stone cold brick dead.  Despite coming to life twice to perform for various members of the Apple retail cult, once home it refused to wake up even long enough to get the hard drive backed up one last time.

In with the new

I bought a new laptop on Wednesday–technically a “certified reconditioned” laptop that was $200 cheaper and not in my hands until Friday.  (My choices were to save the $200 and not have the computer for an additional two days or pay full price and have a new one by the end of Wednesday.  If this seems like a no-brainer let me point out that I never went more than two days without the old laptop for SEVEN YEARS.)  This one is a Macbook Pro that is essentially the same thing as what I used to have but with a better screen, hard drive, casing, mouse pad, keyboard–Jesus Christ, how long have you people had backlit keyboards this is WONDERFUL–and battery.

By the way, if you want to know the worst part about all this, I’m not sure if it was the part where I had to go four days without a computer, or the part where, after four days without the computer, I plugged my backup drive into the new computer and then had to stare at this screen:

2014-07-11 18.46.40And that’s when I started drinking.

 

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