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Undead Son

On the hillside you'll hear my roar. . .

8/11/15 11:44 am - We Made It

Well, I can hardly believe it, but we made it over the line at the last minute.  That's to that last person (you know who you are) that put us over the line.  This was a hugely stressful campaign to run, and now I need to get down to fulfilling it.  My pledge is that these perks will go out ASAP, and going forward perks will be done quick while we catch up the ones from the past.  Everyone will get everything they paid for if it's the last thing i do.

8/3/15 08:59 pm - Home stretch

Well, things have picked up a bit, but we are still only at 63% with just 4 more days to make our goal.  I still think we might do it, but it will be tight if we do.  If you can help in some way, then PLEASE DO.  This is how we live, and though we are trying to diversify so that's not as true, it is not easy.  We could extend the deadline a bit, but that is pushing the boundaries of how long we can go before we run out of money.  It takes Indiegogo up to 2 weeks to diburse the money, and there's only so long we can go before we are flat-assed broke.

CLICK THE LINK!  DO THE THING!

7/26/15 11:57 pm - The Demon Star Rises

TDS Screen 1

This is an experiment as I continue learning the tools of PS in order to be able to do the art and design for the new book.  I'm not putting anything on Mandy, so I need to be able to do all this myself.  This was something I just decided to add as a kind of visual 'teaser' for the book.

I'm really disappointed in how the campaign is not running.  We are at 29% with just 12 days left, and I doubt we can make it even as I refuse to give up.  I don't know if it's the non-porn book, the perks, the lack of Naamah involvement, or just that everybody is broke just now.  Whatever, there is still time and I will keep pushing to try and make it to the finish line.  There's a lot riding on this and I want it to work.

So contribute of you can, and if you can't, then boost the signal.

7/21/15 11:13 pm - Not Working

Wow, this campaign is not working out at all.  13 days in and we are not even to 25%, with just 17 days left.  Indiegogo may let us extend the time, but that stretches out the time until we get paid and makes this hard for us.  I was prepared for this to be a harder sell, but it's obviously not selling at all.  Sigh.

I have to remind myself not to get despondent.  We have been behind the ball and made it before.  But it's inevitable that running these turns the internet into a slot machine: you open up and if you get a contribution you get a little hit of self-esteem, otherwise, you are left with a flat feeling of utter despair.  It's not really fun.

If you can, spread the word.  We need this to work, or we don't eat.

Click the link

In other news, I went to see my dad over the weekend.  I've been trying to see him more often since mom died.  He seems to be doing okay, but the visit really took a lot out of me.  It's strange and terrible to walk into their house and mom is not there.  She was not in my life every day anymore, so I'm not confronted with the absence so much, but it really hit me.  I came home and I was just flattened, and I still feel flattened.

Yeah, not having a really good week.

7/16/15 11:27 pm - The Writer's Brain

Last year I launched my own how-to-write blog over on Tumblr: The Writer's Brain.  It was intended to be totally separate from my presence as Adventurotica, and serve as an outlet for my ruminations on style, technique, and structure, among whatever else I wanted to write about.  I also post stories over there, or I have been trying to.  I fell off the wagon a bit around the new year and am only now trying to get back on posting every week and putting up a story.  I keep the stories short - 1500-2000 words maybe, sometimes a bit longer.  After all, most people are not on tumblr to read long fiction.

The reason I mention in it is that as part of the perks for The Demon Star, I have listed slots for my critiques of works of various lengths: short stories, chapters, outlines, even whole novels.  These would be in-depth analysis of prose style, pacing, plot, theme, characters, and everything else.  The only thing I don't do is copy edit, as I have neither the temperament nor the qualifications for that.

Anyway, if you think that sounds good, you might pop on over to The Writer's Brain to see the kind of stuff I write about and if I sound like someone who might be able to help you.  You might also check out the Patreon I started for it, and maybe consider joining up.

The Writer's Brain

Patreon

The campaign for The Demon Star is still in full swing, and we still need donations.

7/13/15 10:09 pm - Slow Start

The new campaign is off to a slow start, but I have done enough of these that I don't really stress about it, not at the beginning.  It used to be that we would wait until we were an ass-whisker from broke and then launch, and then live off the Paypal donations until the campaign was done.  This gave us more flexibility, but started us behind the curve and we had a hard time catching it.  We'd finish a campaign with $3500 raised and never have more than $1500 in the bank at one time because we were so close to the bone to start with.  This way requires more discipline, and we have to be able to go up to six weeks without being paid anything, so it's a new thing.

That said, I still don't like having to pimp us all the time, it makes me feel like a used-car salesman or something.  I want to do things to fill out the idea of the book and keep people excited while still making the campaign more present in people's minds.  What would you like to see?  If anyone has any suggestions.

In the meantime HERE IS THE LINKY

7/8/15 06:10 pm - Live And In Person

The Demon Star Campaign is launched!

I had a lot of trepidation launching this - the timing, the perks, the wording.  I had to come up with perks that derive solely from me, as one of the avowed purposes of this is not adding any more burden onto Naamah.  It's rather soon after our last campaign.  Normally I would want to wait another month, but the way Indiegogo has started doing the funding dibursement means it is like 6 weeks from now until we get paid.  I worry I will wear on our loyal readers.

And I worry about the change to non-porn, really.  I have been writing porn for almost 5 years now and I know it works, this is new and so i am nervous.  I like this book, I think it is good, but without the sex angle I worry about a lack of flash, or appeal.  I guess I will find out.

So check out the trailer, contribute of you can, and remember this is NOT PORN, so you can feel free to post links to places and people who would not be down with smut.

7/7/15 11:59 pm - The Demon Star

I am really gratified to see all the positive responses to my last post, so I will do a mini-unveil and show what will be coming next.  It feels weird to phrase this as "what I am doing" rather than "what we are doing", but part of this is to take pressure off Naamah, so this one is all me.
Demonstar Rough 2

Above the kingdoms that lie on the shores of the sea of Vilmara, a new star has risen into the night.  A red star portending evil and death, an omen star.  After a long sojourn in the East, the sorcerer Israfel Al-Malik returns home and finds the lands in turmoil.  His old ally, the King of Hesperia, is dead under mysterious circumstances, and he seeks the truth. Everywhere there are signs of plots and counterplots, signs of darkness working beneath the surface.

The king's granddaughter, Amarantha, is caught in a web of intrigue, hemmed in my power-hungry wizards who seek to use her to control the realm, and when she and Israfel join forces, they learn there is much more than that at stake.  An ancient evil - older than their civilization - is awake again.  From out of the dark past comes a nameless power.  One who has devoured entire empires to feed his hunger, and who will do so again unless he is stopped.


I have been doing so much work on this.  Getting the book itself ready, on top of managing all the construction of the graphics and learning Photoshop - which i have limited skill with.  I did so much phot editing yesterday my hand still hurts.  But i am determined to do this.  The cover there is a rough prelim, and has obvious problems and  will not be the final, but I think it looks nice for my first crack at a cover.  (Click to embiggen)

6/17/15 12:47 pm - Thinking About the Future

Right now, over on Adventurotica, we are posting our 14th story.  It's been almost five years since we started with the original Pride & Prostitutes, wayyy back when it was posted here on Livejournal.  At the time, I was running another business, trying to make a living, and this stuff was working much better than that was, so I closed my buisness and we started doing AE full time.

Originally, we were going for a subscription model, but once we had a real sub system in place, we found our income dropped way off.  We kept at it, hoping out audience would grow over time, but that didn't happen, and it looked like we'd have to close up.

Instead we took a gamble and tried crowdfunding, and that worked much better.  We got a rhythm going, and it seemed like we had a viable model to work from.  But now it is apparent that there are several reasons this can't keep going on.

One: fulfillment of the funding perks.  Initially we had a division of labor going on: I did most of the writing (I hope this does not disillusion anyone) and later on I have been doing all of it.  Naamah handled the editing, formatting, and the artwork.  The problem is, she has a mental illness, so she can't be consistent, and it has caused the production of books and other perks to lag behind.  It stresses her out, it stresses me out, and it's not fair to our supporters.

Two: Our audience has not grown.  We have added new supporters, lost some old ones, but the amount of funding we get has remained about the same.  We're scraping by, but I had hoped we might be able to increase our income over time.  That's not happening, and I don't see it suddenly starting to happen.  To be honest, I think that's the Porn Ghetto in action.  We write smut, and some of you may not understand how that has limited us in ability to publicize, restricted what companies we can work through to get perks made, and so forth.  I have been wondering if the porn factor is not holding us back.

Three: I am getting burned out on writing porn.  I mean, I enjoy the work we have done here, and I am not ashamed of it - in fact some of our books, like The Golden Mask and Imperial Blood, I am very proud of.  Some of the books are better than others, like with any body of work.  But I like them all.

But the original idea was that we would collaborate, and aside from a few pieces, we have not done that.  It's just that I can produce work on a schedule, and Naamah cannot.  I wanted to write the plots and action, and let her write the sex, since she is much better at it than me.  Instead I have been writing the sex myself, and I am just not gifted with that like she is.

Also, I am just tired.  I find myself not enjoying writing the sex scenes as much, not looking forward to them.  It varies, of course.  Some I enjoy more than others, but I don't like having to do them.

So what does all this mean?  Well, it means that I am thinking about options.  And I am wondering what you, our readers, think about this.  I am thinking of running the next campaign for a non-porn novel.  It would not post on Adventurotica, but the idea is it would be done and ready to go as soon as the campaign ended.  I would do the formatting, the editing, the artwork - all of it.  The books and whatever other perks would go out very fast - over a few months at most.  There would not be any waiting.

Now, we still have a backlog of AE stuff to finish and put out for people, and that would all absolutely get done.  The goal here is to avoid piling more work on Naamah that she can't cope with, and give her time to get the AE stuff caught up.  Would the AE website go away?  No.  Does this mean I would never write another AE book?  Also no.  There are several I really want to write, but I need a break, or my work is going to start to suffer.

I need to take the weight off of Naamah as much as I possibly can.  I just need to know if anyone who has been following us as Adventurotica would be on board with this idea?

5/1/15 04:11 pm - Over The Line

So here we are at the last of our campaign.  We are at a decent 82%, with just $575 to make goal.  That sounds good, but we are also down to just 4 days remaining heading into the weekend.  So could be good, could be bad.  Don't know yet.

I just wrapped the final chapter on Graveyard of Empires, and am taking a few days off before launching into Masks & Madams.  There's another two weeks of posting left in main chapters, and then there will be a week or so of bonus scenes.  So that will be fun.  I am at a place right now where I have no book to write at the moment, and it feels weird.  I have spent the past year and a half working two books at once 90% of the time, so having nothing going is a nice break.  Won't last though.

So head on over and help us over the finish line so we can stop harping on it.
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