BAM!

Writer’s Digest Annual Conference Appearance

Writer's Digest Annual Conference

Writer’s Digest Annual Conference

So, I’ll be participating in this year’s Writer’s Digest Annual Conference. This will be my third year in a row at this event, and I’m pretty jazzed.

Unlike the last two years where I presented my patented Take Off Your Pants and Write: Plantsing! seminar, this year I’m just popping in for the cocktail hour and a panel:

The Art (and Science) of Worldbuilding in Science Fiction and Fantasy

With Debbie Dadey, Elizabeth Bear, and Matthew Kressel

Sunday, August 14, 10:15am — 11:15am

New York Hilton Midtown
1335 6th Ave
New York, NY 10019

If you’re planning to attend, shoot me a note and buy me a drink, not necessarily in that order.

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Weekly Recap 7-22-16

recap Here we are at Friday again. This keeps happening. Luckily for you, I am a driven man who continuously puts out new writings just for your entertainment.

On the Wee Blog
I wrote a few articles on this here wee blog because that’s what you do when you have a wee blog:

1. “Man Baby” in which I discuss that peculiar feeling when you’re a middle-aged man and your wife doesn’t think you can dress yourself.

2. “The Most Interesting Scene in Mr. Robot S2E1” in which I discuss one scene from the season premiere of the USA show.

ON Other Wee Blogs
I get paid to write for other people for whom writing is a mysterious, dark art. Here’s a few things that published this week:

1. “The Art of the Deal: Bestselling Ghostwritten Books” in which I discuss some bestselling books that were totally not written by the people on the cover.

2. “5 Writers Who Shouldn’t Have Survived to Write Their Classics” in which I discuss a few great writers whose lifestyle choices should have killed them long before they wrote anything.

Writer’s Digest
I have been steadily contributing to Writer’s Digest for the past year, and they recently released a few things including some of my work:

1. Their Yearbook issue on Novel Writing, which includes my piece on Plantsing.

2. “There are No Rules: 4 Tips to Improve Your Writing Instantly” which includes some of my wisdom.

The Ustari Cycle
Stringer.jpgMy novel “We Are Not Good People” is still $1.99 in eBook form, kids, and the next one in the series, “The Stringer” is out in August. So my publisher is pushin’ things:

1. $1.99 still too much for you? You could win a copy of WANGP!

2. BookReels named WANGP as their staff pick as well!

 

Photos
What would these updates be without some multimedia dazzle?

WANGP Super Fan is either at Target buying groceries or about to do some murderin'

WANGP Super Fan is either at Target buying groceries or about to do some murderin’

Spartacus spent all his allowance on a copy of WANGP and now needs liquor monies.

Spartacus spent all his allowance on a copy of WANGP and now needs liquor monies.

Well, that’s it for this week. Hopefully next week I’ll have more stuff for you to completely ignore and make me cry over.

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Weekly Recap July 1, 2016

recapHey there hi there ho there, it’s time for the Weekly Recap, where I basically regurgitate everything I’ve already posted, published, or announced this past week. Or, lacking any news, where I will most likely complain a lot about miscellanea. You’re welcome! This is born out of that old idea that you have to tell people things like 5,000 times for them to remember. Will I tell you 5,000 times that We Are Not Good People is $1.99 in July and The Stringer is available for pre-order. YOU KNOW I WILL, BABY. That’s what authors do, after all. We spend about 5% of our time writing and the rest weeping as our crippled fingers tap out Tweets about our books.

Anyways, here’s what happened around these parts this week:

BUY MEDid I already mention that We Are Not Good People, books 1&2 of the Ustari Cycle, is just $1.99 in digital format? I can’t remember, so there it is again. Kirkus Reviews said “In this hefty and insistently entertaining novel, Somers creates a world of seedy urban crime that develops into a violent epic with the help of an intriguingly bloody magic system.” INTRIGUINGLY BLOODY, what are you waiting for? If you already own the novel, you could go post a short review on Amazon, Goodreads, or someplace else. It helps.

Eat me.

Right here on this wee blog, I posted an essay about disturbing commercials that feature food not only eating itself cannibalistically, but eating itself cannibalistically with what can only be described as gusto. To say that I am freaked out and disturbed by this is an understatement.

Jeff Merely Pawn in Game of LifeThis was actually a few weeks ago, but I can do whatever I want because I am awesome and also the god of this here wee blog: I did an interview with Matt Handle that includes the quote “I am something of a natural asshole. My friends will nod enthusiastically if you ask them, ‘Is Jeff an asshole?’ Their nodding will be tinged with affection, but they will still be definitive gestures of agreement.”

ROCK STARI published an essay over at About.com concerning the fact that more than 25% of Americans say they hadn’t read a book in the last year, and how James Patterson has a solution for this. I also had a solution, but it involves an eat-your-veggies approach of offering up some easy-to-read books, so naturally everyone ignored it.

I posted this photo of my adorable cat, Spartacus. It was a hit:

chum_sparks

sewer_ratAnd finally, the July Jeff Somers Rocks You Like an Email Hurricane newsletter went out, containing the free Avery Cates short story The Sewer Rat. If you weren’t signed up for the newsletter, you have two choices: Find someone who was who will send it to you, or sign up now. If you sign up and send me a note, I’ll send you the story. Why not?

Until next week, I will be drinking heavily and writing under the influence, which usually generates sentences like “He stepedhgu iuntio the room and rhfdjhsfjkhsdkfjdskjfhdskjhfldksjhfkdsjhfdskjhfksjdh.”

Cheers!

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Weekly Recap June 24, 2016

recapSo, this will be a new thing I do at least until I forget about it sometime in the Fall: A weekly recap of things I’ve posted, announced, linked to, complained about, or otherwise referenced in my social media, private out loud conversations with myself I could swear I transformed into a blog post, or other communications channels.I may be stealing this idea from someone, but since theft is the foundation of all my online promotion, why stop now?

So, this week you may have missed

  1. Infographic Porn 4I wrote an article titled “I Asked Novelists How Hard It Is to Write a Novel” that is pretty much what it says on the tin, and which includes fascinating facts such as the fact that 52% of all published authors admit to the use of black magic to get their publishing deal.
  2. sewer_ratTechnically this was last week, but that fits the general theme of incompetence I wallow in, so I’ll allow it: There’s a new Avery Cates short story coming, but you’ll have to be signed up for my newsletter in order to read it, which is some flat-out illuminati stuff, brah.
  3. snowcountryI wrote a new piece for Barnes & Noble about novels that inspire vacation destinations, including A Fine Balance, one of the best books you’ve never read, Ulysses, and one of the best books you’ve never heard of, Snow Country. Read it here.
  4. rebellionI wrote a piece for About.com touting some of the most patriotic bestselling books you can read in order to celebrate the upcoming 4th of July with a modicum of American literary spirit while you drink a beer that’s literally been renamed America. Read it here. I also wrote a piece for B&N about books that were written in prison, because making the act of writing a novel seem exciting is not easy. Read it here.
  5. A lot of cat-related photos, like this one.

While not technically a part of new business this week, let’s all take a moment to pre-order the upcoming Ustari Cycle novellas: The Stringer, Last Best Day, and The Boom Bands,which are coming to blow your mind very, very soon, plus the anthology Urban Allies which contains my short story co-written with Stephen Blackmoore that combines my Ustari Cycle universe with his Eric Carter universe. And finally, don’t forget The Shattered Gears: Omnibus is just $2.99 right now!

Enjoy your weekend. I plan to drink a lot and complain.

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The Ustari Cycle Novellas: The Stringer

I may have mentioned this several thousand times by now, but Pocket Star will be publishing three eBook novellas set in the blood magic world of The Ustari Cycle this year and next. The novellas are titled The Stringer (August 2016), Last Best Day (October 2016), and The Boom Bands (January 2017) and I am really, really excited for y’all to read them.

The covers are final, I think — or at least the cover for The Stringer is, because it’s up on all the store sites, so here you go:
Stringer.jpg
They’ve also revamped the covers for Fixer and We Are Not Good People to make the series cohesive, and those will pop up in due time. In the mean time, The Stringer and the other novellas are all available for pre-order, so why not go and, um, pre-order them?

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Start a Newsletter, They Said. Give Away Signed Books, They Said.

lookiehereUPDATE: The giveaway is over, folks!

Look, self-promotion is mysterious. I don’t claim to understand it. Sometimes posts or things I create that I think are hilarious and/or brilliant get zero traction, and sometimes throwaway ideas I spend zero time on get thousands of shares. I have no idea what I’m doing when it comes to promotion, let’s just put it out there.

So when my agent Janet appears in a swirl of purple smoke and prods me awake with her bedazzled halberd and orders to me to start up an email newsletter, I do it.

Take a gander over at the sidebar (see image). See that? It’s a sign up for my newsletter! YOU SHOULD SIGN UP FOR MY NEWSLETTER. The first 30 folks who do so will get

  • A signed copy of Trickster or We Are Not Good People.
  • A couple of bookmarks or other promo-type swag-things
  • My enduring gratitude (worthless, really)
  • The newsletter, which will be hilarious and offer news about upcoming releases, appearances, giveaways, and anything else I can think of to amuse and astound you

What’s to lose? All you have to do is sign up, and then I’ll email you to confirm you’re one of the first 30 and you tell me where to send your swag (and the inscription you want, if you have a preference). IT’S THAT EASY. My GOD, it’s so easy I can’t believe you haven’t done it already.

Plus, if you push me over 2,000 subscribers, Mailchimp will start charging me, which will make me sad, so there’s that as a goal in case you secretly hate me.

DO IT.

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And We’re Live …

bey_lord_omniOkey dokey, kids: The great Avery Cates Short Story Experiment has come to a close (for now). Parts 5 and 6 of the digital shorts, The Bey and The City Lord are live as eBooks:

The Bey: KINDLE | NOOK | KOBO | PLAY

The City Lord: KINDLE | NOOK | KOBO | PLAY

The Omnibus edition, which is all six novellas combined into a standalone novel, is also available as an eBook for $6 on all platforms — as well as a print book through Amazon for $14 if you so desire. I wanted to keep that price down, but it proved impossible.

The Shattered Gears Omnibus: KINDLE | NOOK | KOBO | PLAY | PRINT

And that’s all she wrote! Or, all I wrote, for now at least. I’ll be taking a little break from Cates for a while, but I’ll get back to this new story eventually, in some form or another.

To everyone who bought these books, sent me encouraging notes, posted reviews, or otherwise showed love for Avery — thank you! I truly hope you’ve enjoyed these new works. Keep your comments and reviews and thoughts coming!

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Upcoming Releases

It’s tax season, which here in the Somers Compound buried deep under Hoboken (and we do mean buried, as the city removed the entrance/exit long ago) means that we’re slowly being crushed under 1099 forms and other tax documents (delivered via pneumatic tube). When you provide 45% of the Internet’s book-related Think Pieces, you accrue a lot of 1099s. Add on the statements from your agent, your DIY publishing endeavors, and your many Defense Department contracts for the Superweapons Based on Cats project, and it gets kind of cluttered.

Naturally, we’re aiming to make this year even more complex. Aside from writing even more book-related freelance articles to gain more of those precious 1099 forms, we also have a number of fresh, piping hot stories scheduled for 2016. This is all part of my plan to keep the pennies and nickels trickling in so I can fill the underground pool with filthy coins and swim around in them. Which is a lot harder to do than Scrooge McDuck makes it look.

So, here’s a breakdown of everything Somers coming at you this year, so you can plan accordingly and start polishing those nickels and pennies for me.

Avery Cates

The experiment of writing a novel in novella-sized chunks was a lot of fun, but all great experiments must end, so I’ll be releasing Parts 5 & 6 (The Bey & The City Lord) as well as the omnibus edition containing all 6 parts, The Shattered Gears, on 2/15. I originally said they’d go up for pre-order on that date, but now I think I’ll just release ’em. I wanted to keep the print version of the omnibus to $6 or so, but as it turns out that was drunk talk, as the cheapest I can make it is $14.

The Beycity lord_coverThe Shattered Gears Omnibus

The Ustari Cycle

There will be new additions to my other series, The Ustari Cycle, which began with 2014’s We Are Not Good People (technically, with 2013’s Trickster, but that became Part 1 of WANGP). I have four novellas/short stories scheduled for 2016 from this universe. Three of them will be published as eBooks from Pocket Star:

  • The Stringer (August 2016) (Pre-order now!)
  • Last Best Day (2016)
  • The Boom Bands (2016)

And one short story, Crossed Wires, is a collaboration with Stephen Blackmoore for the anthology Urban Allies, out in July, combining my Ustari Cycle characters with his Eric Carter universe in an explosive (and cuss-filled) adventure.

Urban Allies Coming 2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Bonus Situation

Finally, a standalone short story of mine titled The Bonus Situation is scheduled to appear in Ragnarok Publications’ Mech: Age of Steel anthology. Technically, this is scheduled for January 2017, but what the heck. I’ve already typed all this, I’m not going to erase it now.

mech

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There you go: All the Somers fiction you can handle. Or not handle.

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New Philip K. Marks Story @ Black Denim Lit

Black Denim Lit

Black Denim Lit

Hey, kids! The folks over at Black Denim Lit have published my short story, Howling on For More and you can read it right now, for free!

Howling is a Philip K. Marks short story, which means, of course, that it’s creepy and a little weird as my favorite down on his luck investigator with a penchant for the strange, paranormal, and impossible looks into a new case.

Previous published Marks stories can be read, too; Sift, Almost Invisible, Through appeared in the MWA Anthology Crimes by Moonlight, edited by Charlaine Harris, and A Meek and Thankful Heart appeared in Buzzy Mag in 2013.

More Marks to come!

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