Sunday, March 29, 2015

The Backlist Project is Nigh Complete

Possibly the most anticipated book
I've put out so far. The other half of
the Sam Bowen story. Ta Dah!

I love that word, "nigh." It's so delightfully Biblical to me. But that's not what we're here to talk about. Bowen's Bluff, the second Sam Bowen volume, dropped this weekend in paperback form. I'll have the ebook figured out soon. That leaves only one book: The Third and final Con-Dorks volume, One in a Million.

I've needed to rescue and resuscitate my backlist for years now. I was all set to do it a couple of years ago, but I went and wrote a bunch of comics that, as it turns out, will never see the light of day. Ah, well. Sometimes you back the wrong horse, you know?

 Once One in a Million drops, next month, that'll be it. I had seven books that needed to be reprinted and updated for ebook consumption. There's eight because Fight Card collection, The Adventures of Sailor Tom Sharkey, slipped in there when no one was looking.  Not that I'm complaining. I love the book and I'm happy those stories have found a collected home.

Coming soon: the final chapter
in the Con-Dorks Saga and it's
a doozy, I tell you what.
I never started this project to make money. Well, let's back up: I didn't publish all of these books to get rich. I fully expected to make a little dough off of the endeavor. And so far, that's exactly what's happened; a little dough. Twenties of forties of dollars. A couple hundred and change, truth be told. I did it so they would serve as a backdrop for other, more recent work coming out this year (and hopefully next). I've got NEW books, see, and they will need some love. But in the meantime, let's see what we can do about this stuff, shall we?

Let's do a contest: I've done some review trawling from you before, but now I'm upping the ante with genuine loot from the past. Collectible, interesting stuff, at that. 

I'm a once and forever member of Clockwork Storybook, a writer's collective that was founded by four people: myself, Matt Sturges, Chris Roberson, and Bill Willingham. We started out as a writer's group to work on our prose, and quickly decided we'd get a lot better, a lot quicker, if we learned how to write fiction in front of a live audience. So, we created a fictional city, San Cibola, and made a shared world out of it. The "online magazine" was updated monthly, and sometimes more frequently, as we were prone to pulling a lot of stunts like 30-day Novel challenges and the like. Our goal was to eventually transition into a print medium, and in this regard, we were only about 10 years ahead of the trend.

Yes, that's Bill's art on the cover. He also illustrated his
story, too. It's very cool.
One of our first projects was a series of chapbooks, designed to get our beaks wet for page layout, printing, and all of that complicated stuff. Our first one was called Offline Volume 1: Mythology, and it featured an original prose story from each of us, not available on the website, with illustrations by our friends. This was our calling card as we started making the rounds at Texas conventions. We sold hundreds of these things. Not thousands, but definitely hundreds.

Now they are all but gone. I've got five spare copies of Offline Volume 1: Mythology to give away and I will do just that. All you gotta do is pick one of my books that you have read over this past year and post a review somewhere that you can point me to it. Amazon, Good Reads, wherever there's decent traffic. That's it! I'll pick my five favorites and send you a rare piece of Clockwork Storybook history. I will even sign it, if that's your bag, baby. Once you have the review up, shoot me a Tweet or an IM or however you get ahold of me, and point me to where it is. I will in turn contact you for mailing instructions.  How does that sound?

Just to sink the hook a little deeper, here's the Table of Contents:

Mythology by Bill Willingham
illustrated by the author

Persuasion by Matt Sturges
illustrated by Harold Covey

A Port in a Storm by Chris Roberson 
illustrated by Doug Potter

An Encounter at Leed's Point
by Mark Finn
illustrated by Mack White


Okay, that's all you need from me! Review! Review for your lives!







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