Project & Wiki Updates for May 2020

May 2020 Project Header

Greetings, productive peeps. It’s time for another monthly project update. Now with bonus wiki updates! These monthly posts help me keep track of where I am against my goals, and for anyone following along they provide a realistic look at the ups and downs of working as an independent author.

Novels

The Case of the Floating Funeral is out in the world. Yay! A friend asked me if I plan to continue to write cruise ship mysteries post-COVID, and my answer is yes. In cozy mystery land, the only true danger is getting murdered, and I feel no obligation to get into our current grim realism in my lighthearted fiction.

Still, there’s an interesting long-term question related to the whole COVID thing. Will our fictional words change if the pandemic changes our social norms? Perhaps. But I feel no need to be ahead of that curve.

I’m working on my second Emerald City Spies novel, Power Play, and I’m about halfway through the first draft. Woot! MOAR BOOKS, BABY.

I have an Ellie mystery and a Kat mystery in development too.

New Wiki Posts

I’ve added to my skill development wiki this month:

Techniques for Immersive Writing
Copying Exercise
Lexicon

Business Projects

Marketing: We ran our first-ever marketing campaign this month, and it went really well. I’ve run ads a time or two before, but this was my first time running a bunch of different marketing activities in sequence. How grown up! We’re like a proper publishing business now.

Evaluating Kindle Unlimited: Well, the data is in, and I have to admit that it isn’t the answer I’d hoped for. Bottom line: putting my books into KU (Amazon’s exclusivity program) is financially advantageous. And it wasn’t even a close comparison. I’m talking about the difference between writing for coffee money (a loss, really, once you consider the costs of publishing) and writing for pay-your-bills money.

Personal Projects

Dungeons and Dragons: P & I have been enjoying D&D games with friends over video chat. Our DM does excellent character voices. My advice for fellow adventurers? Whenever you can polymorph into a Mammoth, just do it. Stuck in a frozen wasteland? Become a mammoth for the thick fur. Need to grind your way through a difficult fight without magic? Become a mammoth for those extra hit points. Need to reach something high up on a wall? Go mammoth. Does your party need to distract a large crowd of people? Go mammoth and start goring things with your massive tusks.

Go mammoth. Always.

Walking Walking Walking: Seattle summer arrived a month early, and we’ve been taking walks every day. Because our condo is so tiny, getting out of the house is essential, and even a little bit helps. Air! Trees! Sun! Nature is magic, and Seattle summers are always a treat after the long, gray winters.

Books & TV: It took months, but we finished twelve seasons of Bones. Good ending! We blazed through Community, and it was a hoot. Rick and Morty is back, and the season is… well, it’s a spectacle? Book wise, I’m reading a fair amount of nonfiction (research for future books) and I adored the most recent Murderbot novel. I’m dipping my spurs into the Western genre, and I’m struggling to find stories I like. If there’s a Western author you like, hit me up.

Anyway, that’s what I’m up to. How are your projects going, blog buddies?

PS: Vigilance! Keep washing those paws, okay?