KB Featured Book
Stone and Silt
by Harvey Chute

$2.99
Kindle Edition published 2013-08-14
Bestseller ranking: 713665

Product Description
Big Al's Books & Pals 2014 Readers' Choice Awards: Young Adult Nominee

A ruthless murder and a stolen shipment of gold.

At school, sixteen-year-old Nikaia Wales endures the taunts of bullies who call her a “half-breed.” At home, she worries about how her family will react if she reveals her growing feelings for the quiet boy next door.

Those are soon the least of her troubles. Nikaia discovers a hidden cache of gold, and when police find a corpse nearby, her father becomes a suspect. Worse, Elias Doyle is circling, hungry to avenge his brother’s death.

Nikaia desperately searches for clues to save her father. In her quest to find the killer, she learns about the power of family, friendship, and young love....

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1
Writers' Cafe / Re: NaNoWriMo 2017
« on: Yesterday at 05:10:59 AM »
Hey, I'm doing it too!

Trying a lot of things outside my comfort zone too.
Instead of my normal scifi, I'm writing a nautical fantasy novel. I'm keeping the content pretty light. No drugs or murder or cannibals in these books, just light hearted fun stuff.
I plotted the whole thing ahead of time, which is strange for me.
I cheated a little by using a beginning chapter I had written six months ago.

First week I averaged 1500 a day. Second week I averaged 1000. This week I'm averaging 300 a day. It's more a function of the things I was putting off last three weeks starting to catch up with me. We're still cleaning up from the hurricane, so that's a lot of things. But I'm pushing through it. I've got 23k and according to my outline, the book should be done around 40k.

2
Writers' Cafe / Re: Writing Two Series at the Same Time?
« on: November 18, 2017, 10:23:21 AM »
It worked for me.

My books were moving slowly, because I had so much tired up in them and the plots were so convoluted.

A fresh start with a simple, well-planned story, has me writing faster than ever.

Though if you can place your new series in the same world as the first you'll have an easier time selling then.

3
Writers' Cafe / Re: Blurb Help LitRPG Novel
« on: November 08, 2017, 05:55:17 AM »
You repeat the phrase "thanks to" in two subsequent sentences. I'd change one instance do it doesn't sound echoey
That aside, it's an excellent concept. I like the whole he's never played a concept class before aspect. Very rule breaking.

4
This would be right up my alley, if I wasn't trying KU right now.

5
My interview with Mark Gardner has been up for a few days if anyone would like to check it out and learn a little more about what makes Mark tick.

http://traffic.libsyn.com/thrillsandmystery/interview_episode_33_Gardner.mp3
Ooh I missed this. I enjoy marks posts on kboards. I'll have to go listen to him talk about his books.

6
Writers' Cafe / Re: Promos with a short lead time?
« on: October 26, 2017, 08:27:52 PM »
Reply with what book you need promoted & I'll include it in my RR Books newsletter tomorrow or Monday for free. I have a space open.
The book is Cast in Sand, the first one in my sig. It's coming out day after tomorrow.

Sorry I didn't get back right away. Had to run to work.

7
Writers' Cafe / Promos with a short lead time?
« on: October 26, 2017, 08:42:59 AM »
I've got some extra cash, and a book coming out in two days.
What is your favorite last-minute promo site? (Science Fiction/Fantasy)

ie. one that doesn't need to be booked a month or two in advance, and sometimes gives a good return.
I don't have that much $ but I'm willing to pay a little more for the privilege.

8
Writers' Cafe / Re: Will this offend anyone?
« on: October 24, 2017, 11:01:56 AM »
My sense of humor is a mix of sarcasm and sexual double meanings, which I think helped quite a bit writing this particular type of book.

It's more of a new writer thing. I'm sure you're fine.

My characters make accidental double entendres all the time, but  don't realize it. Because it is post-apocalyptic, and the language has devolved, most of the characters don't get the jokes. Which to me, is funny.

9
Writers' Cafe / Re: Poke at my Prologue (Not a Blurb)
« on: October 24, 2017, 10:55:04 AM »
You could do what Kevin Hearne does with the Iron Druid series: put a "last time, in this series" type of recap at the beginning (like what TV shows have), and people can either read it or not. A prologue is technically part of the story, so a lot of us feel compelled to read it, and then get annoyed when it's boring. A recap, I think, would not necessarily have the same effect. Especially if you write it in a quick summary form rather than trying to make it sound like part of the story.

A large part of this plot is her remembering things.But I can't do that with every book in the series. That would get old pretty quick, so your method might be the way to go.

10
Writers' Cafe / Re: Will this offend anyone?
« on: October 24, 2017, 09:31:34 AM »
I'm going to guess that people who don't appreciate snark and sarcasm probably don't read a lot of urban fantasy with female main characters, haha.

My biggest pet peeve, is when people try and write that character, but think that meanness/rude is the same thing as snark/sarcasm. So easy to write an unlikable character by accident.

11
Writers' Cafe / Re: Poke at my Prologue (Not a Blurb)
« on: October 24, 2017, 09:17:20 AM »
Chapter one starts like this. I think it will be just fine with no prologue:

Edwina had seen trees many times in her life, but never quite like this. These were all around her, not ten or twenty but a hundred trees, so many they obscured the great dome overhead.
It's beautiful, she thought, feeling hazy, and content to lie beneath them looking about.
Each shift clouded her memory and Edwina couldnt remember which body she had chosen, if she had chosen at all, or where on Atlas she had landed. She couldn't feel anything, no pain or discomfort, no tactile sensations, no smells. It was the same with all of these crude, mechanical bodies, a feeling that she was dreaming and couldn't wake.

12
Writers' Cafe / Re: Poke at my Prologue (Not a Blurb)
« on: October 24, 2017, 09:09:53 AM »
If you know someone talented at such things, you could provide a small map of the space station.
I'm a painter.
At one point I was a full time, professonal artist.
But everything I try for my own books sucks. lol.


This looks like a poorly disguised excuse to info dump which is why people hate prologues to begin with.
I just re-read it. Everything I said in the prologue, has been touched on in the story.
I addressed this problem when I first wrote the book.
I'm going to cut it.
That doesn't fix that later info-dumps. But it's a start.

There's a floating-away, looking at the station as a whole scene at the end of the book. I think I just wanted one in the beginning, for poetic symmetry. Stupid poetry background.

13
Writers' Cafe / Re: Poke at my Prologue (Not a Blurb)
« on: October 24, 2017, 08:55:45 AM »
This looks like a poorly disguised excuse to info dump which is why people hate prologues to begin with. I think you are better off including the reader's confusion with your character's in chapter 1. That way, they can both learn the layout together.
Yeah.
I can cut all the, map parts, if I'm careful when I start talking about them later.

And the part about her expedition, comes up later.
So that can go too.

When the story opens, she doesn't remember who she is or how she got there.
I'll have to re-read chapter one and see if I can just drop readers into it.

14
Writers' Cafe / Poke at my Prologue (Not a Blurb)
« on: October 24, 2017, 08:09:24 AM »
EDIT:

Y'all can just ignore this whole post.
C. Gold called me out the fact that the whole prologue was an info-dumping cop-out.
Poked it, punctured, and deflated. I'm gonna scrap it and start the story with chapter one.


----

This is almost more of a craft thing, but it is front-matter for the whole series, so I'm putting it up here.

I am writing a book set in a pre-existing world. I've whittled this prologue down to the bare minimum that I need the readers to know BEFORE the story starts.
I am well aware of trends away from prologues, even in those meaty epic fantasy novels. So If I can shave this prologue down to the bare minimum, that would be great.

(I just scrapped the old one, so this is a little rough.)
------

Leaving her body was never as easy as Edwina hoped, but the fear was less each time. When she traveled this way, she could see the entire space station as if from a great distance.

Atlas was made up of three concentric circles, four hundred miles across. The outer ring held the dome cities. Folklore said there had once been thirteen, but only seven had survived the collapse. The inner ring was a labyrinth of factories and warehouses, so large it was a world unto itself. Small tribes of dangerous people guarded those ancient storerooms, and hunted the hallways for rats, and unwitting travelers. The center was the Pit, a large sphere, nested inside of the rings, like the hub of a great wheel.

There were no old stories about the Pit. In the two hundred years since the collapse, Edwinas salvage crew had been the first to reach it. They had not been prepared for what they found there. If not for the ancient technology she discovered, Edwina would have died with the rest of them. What purpose the ancients had for a device that separated the mind from the body, and cast it into a machine,  Edwina could not fathom. But somehow, she had used it. Her body had been locked away and her consciousness set adrift.

She was never fully in-control as she traveled, and she could only do it for a little while before another host drew her in. This time she was close. Edwina saw a dome, not her home city, but one that felt oddly familiar. There was a body inside, a robot like the others, empty, and waiting. Her leap was over, the machine was coming to life. She felt herself being pulled toward it, and braced for the struggle to come.

----

Personally, I would like to cut the whole second paragraph. But people always say they don't know enough about the layout of the space station.

Also, chapter one is about Edwina being disoriented. By giving a short description of where she is and how she got there, I am hoping to let the reader to enjoy Ediwna's confusion and  watch her solve problems, without being confused themselves, and without breaking from third-person limited.

15
Writers' Cafe / Re: For those of you who write handwrite...
« on: October 24, 2017, 07:48:22 AM »
I handwrite about one third of each chapter. Then I expand on that during the revisions.

It's the only way I can do certain kinds of "voice." Whole sections of my story just won't come to me unless I  handwrite them.
I could spend a week staring at a blank word doc, or I can switch to notebook for a day until I find my stride.

The hardest part is always re-typing it. But now that I'm also using dragon, I think I might try to dictate my handwritten stuff. Could be a game changer.

16
Writers' Cafe / Re: Will this offend anyone?
« on: October 24, 2017, 07:42:18 AM »
There is a large portion of the world that does not understand sarcasm. It just does not exist in some cultures.

And so they would probably think that the character is being earnest.

I wouldn't worry about it.

If you're going to read in a certain culture, you'll eventually learn how their humor works.

17
Writers' Cafe / Re: Call for submissions for science fiction anthology
« on: October 23, 2017, 05:29:09 AM »
Just dropping in to say.
I love what you're doing.
You know, nano is coming up.
If you have an idea what the next anthology will be, I might have my nano prompt.

18
Yeah I've heard that once it's enrolled you're committed, even though your 90 days hasn't started.

Thanks for your input. I'll probably keep it out until release day in case I want to do a giveaway.

19
So far, I know that putting a pre-order in select does not start your 90 days early. But I have a suspicion that select pre-orders might perform better.

20
Writers' Cafe / Re: New Book Launching Platform for Authors
« on: October 09, 2017, 11:20:19 AM »
I'll second the dark fantasy and fantasy romance suggestions. Also epic fantasy.

For litrpg it may be better to give that it's own listing, since it contains both fantasy and scifi, and is growing very quickly.

21
Here's a tricky one.

Will putting my book in kdp select during the pre-order increase its performance, or will it just put unnecessary restrictions on me for no benefit. (I would like to distribute some early copies to fans, via instafrebie, but am willing to not do that, if kdp enrollment makes my pre-order perform better.)

Any insights?

22
Ooh I wouldn't touch that name with a ten foot poleaxe.

23
And Dustin Porta and I talked about Sci-fi here:

http://traffic.libsyn.com/thrillsandmystery/interview_episode_32_Porta.mp3

I had a great time and I am enjoying listening to the other interviews.
I'd do it again, anytime!

24
Writers' Cafe / Re: What's new at Instafreebie?
« on: August 25, 2017, 08:55:04 AM »
Anyone who hasn't listened to Science Fiction Fantasy Marketing Podcast, Episode 145, Ashley and Maura do a great job at articulating Instafreebie's mission. Especially liked their response to some of the tougher questions lobbed at them. No cop-outs, just good practices and proactive attitude.

Also, I thought I had a pretty good grasp on what Instafreebie can do. Went into the episode not expecting to learn anything new. I was pleasantly surprised.

I've been most impressed with their built-in discoverability. Since starting the free trial, and signing up for paid, I've seen my list grow from zero-to seventy in two and a half months.(I haven't promoted it anywhere. That's just referrals from instafreebie.) That's a lot if you have nothing. I was expecting that it wouldn't be a good list, but the preliminary emails are getting a 50% open rate and 6% click-rate. I haven't tried to sell them anything yet, but I've had three or four people cross over to my advance-reader list...which could be more valuable than sales.

I know that sounds like nothing to some of you. But you can't get into certain promos until they have a large list. And it's tough to grow a list until you're in a swap.
You can, however, do a small newsletter swap, if you have a small, but healthy list.

After just a few months, and some thoughtful newsletter writing on my part, I'm seeing potential. Which is more return than many other places will give you for $20.

25
Writers' Cafe / Re: free beta/dev edits(May I edit your fantasy novel?)
« on: August 15, 2017, 07:33:27 PM »
Schedule is starting to fill up.

I have availability in september. Definitely open slots for beta/alpha reading. Full edit, depends on how quickly I finish the current manuscript.

Services are still free, at least for another month while I'm getting back in the swing of things.

Still prefer fantasy.
Some hard science fiction would be fun to read also. Any takers?

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