Workin’ Away!

Friends,

As you read this post, I hope you are in good health, good spirits, and perhaps in good company! Let’s get down to this week’s material…

The Faces of the War Collection

Work has been progressing slowly but surely on Imminent, and I can’t wait to get the story out to you. I still don’t know when that time will be for sure, but the tentative release date of December 11 still stands. As Thanksgiving nears, I’ll make the decision as to when the actual release will occur based on the progress I make this week. When I know for sure, I’ll reveal the cover and book details, so keep an eye out for it!

If you’re interested in my first two books, you can check them out at Amazon! They are called Resistant and Unguarded.

Writing Tip: If you need to relay information to your reader, do it in the form of character dialogue or inner monologue – but don’t do too much at once, and don’t give unrelated information. Information dumps are bad!

The Short Story Collection

As I’ve said before, I plan on working toward the publication of another short story volume sometime in the next 6-9 months after I get Imminent up and running. For Volume 3, I have the story ideas already cooked up; I just have to develop them and then write them. My focus, however, will be my Faces project, simply because I’ll be working on the final two books simultaneously and aim to get them done sooner than later. As usual, this third volume will differ from its predecessors and will hopefully be another opportunity for me to experiment with my writing craft.

If you want to check out the first two volumes in this collection, you can get them on the Kindle. Volume 1 and Volume 2 are pretty cool!

Writing Tip: When writing for long periods of time in one day, it’s good practice to take a break every once in a while to stretch your legs, reset your eyes, and give your mind a breather. I do it about every hour or so on long writing days.

That’s about it for this post. Thank you so much for reading it and for taking an interest in my work. I encourage you to check out the links to my books (above) and to follow this blog if you aren’t already doing so. I enjoy networking, especially with other readers and writers!

Until next time,

-Eli

November Rain

Friends,

I hope this post finds you in good health and good spirits, striving toward achieving your goals! If you are someone who tends to have trouble in this area, here’s a tip: just do a little at a time. Set small, attainable goals that lead to bigger ones. From there, you should be much more able to get where you want to go.

Let’s get into this week’s content…

The Faces of the War Collection

The progress of Imminent is coming along great! I am about a third of the way done with finalizing the manuscript, and I hope to keep up the pace into the coming weeks. I have applied the tips and advice given me by my editor, and have really taken to make it part of my writing habit. It will be very interesting when I start on the next book and can implement those pieces of advice from the beginning of the process. That leads into what I’d like to say next.

My plan for the post-Imminent time period, at least for the immediate future, will involve working on the final two books of the collection simultaneously. As of yesterday, I’ve developed the story and supporting details for the first third of each book. Once I complete the skeleton outline of the story, writing can begin. I’ll stick as closely as I can to my writing plan of 1,500 words a week, and see where that takes me come spring. My overall plan, as of now, is to work on the writing of both books so that “hard part” is done sooner, allowing me to use my creative flow to my advantage and work in the phase of editing as a whole, later. It’s a new approach to my writing, so I’m excited to try it out and see what happens!

Writing Tip: It’s good to try new things in writing, especially when it comes to the method of creativity. You never know what might work better for you than what you’re currently doing.

I’ve noticed something peculiar in the past week, and then by extension the past many months: for some reason, I work more efficiently when it rains. It’s now November (crazy!) and we recently had a short spell of rain. During that time, I felt more “in a rhythm” with my work, and I ended up getting quite a bit done. On the same token, I’ve noticed the same trend in the past. There have been times before where I work extremely well and am very productive while it rains. Weather or not rain is the reason, I don’t know…it’s just an observation. (You see what I did there?)

Other Work

In planning the coming months, I realized that I may not have much time to devote to other projects. I really want to focus on completing my WWII collection because it’s very important to me. I wouldn’t feel good about working on other things, because I’d be taking time away from my main project. Like I’ve said before, I don’t want there to be a large lapse in time before I complete Faces. With that said, I don’t know how it will affect progress of The Short Story Collection, and I definitely won’t start one of the newer, bigger projects I have planned for development. I’ll simply focus on Faces.

Writing Tip: It’s good to have some sort of plan in place for your writing. Look at what goals you want to accomplish and turn those into an action plan with quantifiable milestones.

That’s about it for this week. Thank you so much for reading and supporting me! If you aren’t a follower of my blog, click that Follow button, and be sure to check out my social media pages and subscribe to my mailing list (just email me at elikale.author@gmail.com)!

Until next time,

-Eli

Imminent Nearing Completion

Friends,

It’s crazy that November has arrived! I hope the fall season is treating you well, and that this post finds you in your quest to accomplish your goals. The main bit of news this week is in regard to my WWII historical fiction WIP Imminent, so let’s get down to it…

The Faces of the War Collection

I am happy to say that things are coming together for my current WIP, Imminent. I received all of the edits back from my editor, and have already begun to revisit the manuscript after taking a week off.

Writer Tip: Take some time off between read-throughs or edits of you manuscript, as it will help you catch errors and fill in story gaps more effectively.

The Prologue is the closest to being in its final form, and I’m working on the Epilogue as I write this. I’ve gone through the body of the text with the “Find” tool in Word and fixed minor issues here and there. I plan on getting to the more involved editing of the body next week.

If you haven’t seen my most recent YouTube vlog, then you may not be aware of what I’m about to tell you. I have thought about the book I’m currently working on and what I should do about its publication, as well as looked ahead to the next two books in the project. Weighing my options, I’ve decided to focus on finishing Imminent and only refine the plans for the next two books in my spare time. Once this book is off my desk and published, I’ll write the next two books simultaneously.

Based off the publishing pattern I’ve established with the first two books, one would expect me to write Book Four within 11-13 months and then publish it, and move forward with writing and publishing Book Five. Instead, I’ll write both stories – maybe alternating between the two over time, or I’ll write one and then the other – and edit them together. When they’re both ready to be published, I’ll release them together and thus complete the Faces of the War collection. The reason for this is twofold: one, because I don’t know what my personal life will bring in the next two years and I want to be sure to finish the project I’ve started, and two, because it’ll lend itself to a different marketing tactic that I’ve never tried before and I’m interested to see what will happen.

As for a cover and book detail reveal, that will come sometime later this month when I’m closer to completing the book and will know for sure when the release will be. If all goes as originally planned, I’ll do the reveal when the book becomes available for pre-order around Thanksgiving, but keep your eyes open for a specific post about it.

Writer Tip: When setting up your book for pre-order on the Kindle, be sure to have your final book file (front matter, manuscript, back matter, etc.) submitted to Amazon KDP no later than ten days before its release.

I think that will do it for this week’s post. If you notice, I’m not doing a separate section on Indie Writing Advice in this post; instead, I’ve tried something different with the little tips spread throughout the post itself. Let me know if you like it! As always, thank you for your support and encouragement as I pursue my passion. And please, follow my blog if don’t already, check out my YouTube channel or social media pages, and subscribe to my mailing list for early bird details about my projects. All you have to do is shoot me an email at: elikale.author@gmail.com!

Until next time,

-Eli

Excitement Galore!

Friends,

I hope this post finds you well and striving to achieve the goals you’ve set down for yourself! Let’s get down to this week’s content…

The Short Story Collection

It’s been over a week since I released my second volume of short stories. It was an exciting release because it sort of happened off the cuff. I’d planned to release it sometime before my birthday in February, but I ended up pulling some strings to make it happen sooner. If you haven’t yet checked it out, you can find it on Amazon here.

Looking ahead in this collection, I can tell you that I already have ideas in development for Volume 3! Granted, these ideas are at their most basic state of being, and have been sitting on the back burner for months. Nevertheless, it’s exciting to know that I already have a footing for the next installment of this collection, and that it’s ready to be worked on in the coming months.

The Faces of the War Collection

I am on the cusp of finalizing the first half of Imminent‘s manuscript, which should end up being around 21K words. The tentative release date of December 11 still stands, and I am working very hard to see that the book is released at the time. As I said before, once I get the edited manuscript back from my editor, I’ll reveal the cover and book details.

Looking ahead in this collection, I am preparing the material for my next book. I plan on beginning work on this the day I submit Imminent to Amazon. This is because once that’s done, the story is out of my hands and I can’t change it for this release. This next story will be different from its predecessors in its own way, which is something I’ve tried to do with each new release. At this point, it may be a little trickier to write, but that’s the fun of writing – to test yourself!

Indie Writing Advice

I’ve picked up on something of a habit of mine while editing Imminent: I tend to resort to certain words to express the thoughts in my head while initially writing the story. And it definitely shows. So for some advice, I’ll direct my wording to you:

When you go back through your manuscript (whether before or after having another person look at it), look up all the instances where you use certain words a lot. For example, I tend to use “then” when describing a sequence of events or telling what a character does next. It might be hard to envision it right now, but trust me – something like that shows. Another one is the word “just” being used a lot to modify short distances between objects or the relative time before or after something happens. Leaving words like these out can make a world of difference in your writing!

That’ll be it for this week’s post. I hope you are accomplishing your own work and are getting along well with developing your craft. If you’re not a writer, I encourage you to keep reading! Thank you for reading my post, and if you haven’t yet joined my mailing list or follow this blog, I encourage you to do that as well.

Until next time,

-Eli

New Short Stories Released!

Friends,

I know I’ve said this before, but the autumn season is wonderful! So many beautiful scenes to be seen and smells to be smelled, all before the backdrop of everyday life! Time flies by, whether we realize it or not, and soon it will be a new year. But before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s get into this week’s post…

The Short Story Collection

After much time of fiddling with different ideas and developing nascent stories, I’ve finally arrived to the point of releasing a new volume of short stories! I originally wanted to publish this ebook shortly after Unguarded came out earlier this year, but I opted to focus my writing efforts on Imminent. At that point I thought, “I’ll get the new volume out by summer.” That didn’t happen. “Early fall, perhaps.” That didn’t happen either. My goal, then, was to release it by my birthday in February.

However, my writing muse intervened and urged me to finish the work and finalize the stories, one of which was already completed. I sent the other two off to a friend for some feedback, which I quickly got back and implemented. After a final read-through, I submitted the ebook to be released through Amazon, and it was done very quickly. I submitted it Thursday night and it went live within a few hours, having the official release date of October 15. You can check it out and purchase it on this sales page!

Cover of Volume 2 in “The Short Story Collection”

Like my first volume, the stories in Volume 2 vary from my larger projects with regard to different aspects, such as scope and story premise. That’s been the whole goal all along: to produce new content that is different and that allows me to experiment with my writing. So I encourage you to pick up a copy on your Kindle (or through your Kindle reading app) and let me know what you think about my new work. I hope you enjoy it!

The Faces of the War Collection

Progress is being made with the edits for Imminent, with everything still on track for an early December release. This story is really coming together as I’m going back through and addressing changes or additions from my editor. The idea is that she’ll complete her work by November (thus allowing her to do NaNoWriMo), which then will give me a month to go through and do my final read-throughs. My goal is to submit the final manuscript to Amazon by November 30 so that it can be available for purchase by December 11. Details regarding pre-order for Kindle and the costs for both formats (print and Kindle) will be given when the cover is released – sometime in the next few weeks. Barring any major impediments, you’ll have another WWII historical fiction book by Christmas!

Indie Writing Advice

Due to Volume 2 being released, I had to take care of the book’s details in Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). There’s a YouTube video that covers this on my channel, so feel free to check it out. I’ll say that it would be good to explore the ins and outs of Amazon KDP before you are ready to upload your book. This way, you are familiar enough with how it works and what all needs done in order to complete the uploading process for publication. That is, if you’re wanting to sell your work on the Kindle platform. Personally, I only sell through Amazon. Everyone has their own reasons for choosing what platform(s) they sell their work through, and each certainly has its own draw. So if you’re in a position where you have a manuscript nearly ready for publication – and you want to sell it on the Kindle – I suggest you log into KDP and get acquainted!

That’s it for this week, but there’ll be more in the coming weeks! Thank you so much for reading this post, and for your support and encouragement of my work. If you haven’t yet done so, I encourage you to join my mailing list (you can email me with a brief “Hey, how are ya? I wanna join the mailing list!” at elikale.author@gmail.com) to get the most detailed and behind-the-scenes information regarding my projects, especially Imminent!

Until next time,

-Eli

Fall Is My Favorite

Friends,

Autumn is in full swing here in Ohio, with the trees turning colors and the temperatures getting cooler. It’s probably my favorite time of year! Let’s get into this week’s content…

The Faces of the War Collection

The editing process continues for Imminent, with everything still on track for a December release. I’ve decided that once I receive the edited manuscript from my editor, then I will reveal the cover and book details. It’s easier and way less stressful letting out that kind of information when you have the story back in your own hands versus still waiting to receive it – mostly because you can’t control it if you don’t have it. I’d hate to reveal the cover and details and then find out there’s a snag in the editing or I need to do a major rewrite, thus prolonging the book’s release. That wouldn’t be fair to you, my readers!

Teaching Life

My new teaching job is going well, with my second full week beginning today. I teach through an online program, educating about 200 students across the state of Ohio. I’m currently teaching one class – Modern World History – three days a week. And yes, I’m working the other days of the week as well. When I’m not teaching, I’m planning lessons, creating presentations, and answering emails, among other things. It’s an exciting new endeavor in my life, not to mention the profession for which I went to college!

YouTube

I capture aspects of my everyday life through the lens of my digital camera, and upload that footage to my YouTube channel every Friday. I talk about indie publishing and the progress of my writing projects, as well as teaching in this new position. I also touch on travel here and there in my videos. If you’re interested in any or all of those topics, come on over to my channel and check out what I’m doing from week to week!

Indie Writing Advice

As a writer, you should also be reading. It’s good practice to always have a book ongoing, whether it’s in physical form or on a reading device. I actually have a few books that I’m reading right now, each of them different from the others. “Let’s Get Digital” by David Gaughran touches on his experience in the self-publishing world; “The Craft of Intelligence” by Allen W. Dulles covers the author’s experience as an intelligence officer in the Cold War; and “On Hitler’s Mountain” by Irmgard Hunt.

The first book is one I’m reading for knowledge, because learning about how the indie publishing world works is vital to being an indie writer. I’m reading the second book for research purposes, because some of what I’m learning about here will apply to what I’ll write later. And the third book is my “just for fun” book, because reading shouldn’t always be business. So if you don’t have a book cracked at any given time, then get on it! Reading books helps make one a better writer of them.

That’s it for this week. Thank you so much for your interest in my work, and for reading my post this week. I encourage you to follow this blog, subscribe to my mailing list, follow me on social media, or even subscribe to my YouTube channel – any and all of those things will help keep you informed on what I’m doing, and will help us connect with each other.

Until next time,

-Eli

Teaching and Writing

Friends,

Another week, another chance to chase your dreams. Cliche? Perhaps…but quite an endeavor all the same! Let’s get down to business…

The Faces of the War Collection

As you are probably aware, I have recently taken a full-time teaching job where I can work from home, educating high school students through an online program. This is something that has been long awaited, and it’s also a blessing. Due to the fact that I basically jumped right into the school year, I have been left with little time to devote to editing. Not that I have much to work with just yet – my editor is making her way through Part I. My hope is that I can plan ahead in the semester and hopefully get my lessons and presentations completed for the months of November and December, thus affording me more time in the evenings and on the weekends to tackle my story. That is where things stand as of now, and they can only improve from here. Look for more details regarding the book’s publication as October turns to November, and tell a friend about it!

I plan on doing some sort of promotion for my other books in the run-up to the release of Imminent, but I’ll have more details on that as time goes on. You can check out my books Resistant and Unguarded – in print and on the Kindle – on Amazon!

Indie Writing Advice

There was a post I read recently by Justin McLachlan that talked about common writing mistakes that make you look like an amateur, and I thought it was a good read! One mistake that stuck out to me was this: using fancy dialogue tags. Justin insists (and I agree) that “said” is really the main tag you really need. Sure, you can throw in a little bit of “yelled” or “exclaimed” or “interjected,” but always trying to use fancy tags can often take away from what’s actually being said because the reader is caught up on the tag, not the dialogue content.

That’s it for this week. Thank you for reading my post and for lending me your eyes for this little while. If you’re interested in finding out more about my work (books, YouTube vlogging, blogging), just click the “Follow” button on this site. You can even join my mailing list to get my e-newsletter, which includes more in-depth details than what you’ll find here or on my social media. It’s kind of like a VIP club, so I hope to see you there!

Until next time,

-Eli

Read-Through Editing Complete!

Friends,

This week, we’ll be getting into October! It’s crazy how fast these last few months have flown by, and how quickly the autumn and winter seasons are approaching. I hope that with a new season upon us, you are able to have a renewed opportunity to work toward achieving your goals and seeking your ambitions. Let’s get into today’s material…

The Faces of the War Collection

I recently finished the read-through editing of my manuscript for Imminent! Upon completing the first draft, the manuscript was just shy of 43K words. After this first read-through, it is just over 45K. This is right where I originally wanted the story to be in terms of word count, so we’ll see what changes end up being made once I get the returned manuscript from my editor.

Also, as I’ve mentioned before, you can expect a cover and synopsis reveal probably around Halloween. I’ll give more details regarding the reveal as the next four weeks press on. I want to be sure that I have the manuscript back in my hands completely edited before moving forward with the reveal. The point is, you can surely be excited in the anticipation of it!

I alluded to something in my most recent vlog that has to do with my next project. It is going to be the next book in the WWII collection, the story of which is already planned out and ready to be written. I am excited to get Imminent off the ground, but I’m also excited to continue writing into the next project! More details about that will come in due time.

Indie Writing Advice

I have learned through writing my first two books, as well as during the writing of Imminent, that a good habit to have is to be conscious of the characters you write. When it comes to writing main characters, you must make them relative and understandable to the reader, for it is those characters that the reader experiences the story. The story line should differ from book to book, and so the character’s experiences should be unique to their circumstances.

In a series or collection, like what I’m writing, it’s okay to reintroduce familiar themes or motifs across different stories, because it helps the reader understand the world they’re reading about and the characters within that world. We draw on preconceptions of places or things if we come across them in reading multiple times, and so that can be used to help establish a better understanding of what’s actually going on in the story and where. However, you don’t want to fall into a habit of writing what is known as a flat character – someone in the story who lacks a dynamic personality or who doesn’t really change through the course of the story. In the same way, you don’t want to have a flat story line, either.

So if you are new to writing, don’t be afraid to explore your world and your characters, and on the same token don’t be afraid to revisit places or people in an effort to help keep a newly formed story familiar to the reader.

That’s about it for this post. There’ll be more in the coming weeks as Imminent progresses through the publishing process, so stay tuned! Follow my blog or join my mailing list (by emailing me at elikale.author@gmail.com) to stay as updated as possible on this project!

Until next time,

-Eli

Off to the Editor!

Friends,

I don’t know what it is about the fall season, but for some reason it inspires productivity and motivation within me. I hope it does the same for you! I have some news for you this week, so let’s get to it…

The Faces of the War Collection

I sent the first portion of my manuscript off to my editor Saturday night, and will continue to work on self-editing the rest of the manuscript this week. I don’t believe I’ll have any major rewriting to do, so ideally I’ll be able to have everything done on my end by Friday. I’m excited to see my editor’s thoughts and comments on the story, and to see where it’ll take me from there!

As I near the stage of publishing this book, I am looking ahead to my next project to get things in order for it. I already have the story planned out section by section, and I’ve done some research already through reading and looking information up online. Now it just needs to be written! I’ll touch on that more as the release date for Imminent gets closer.

The Short Story Collection

I know it’s been a while since I’ve talked about this project, mainly because I haven’t been working on it. Considering that I do have three stories (in rough form) to publish a Volume 2, I may squeeze in some writing on that project over the Christmas season with the intent to finalize those three stories by New Year’s Day. It would be nice to get a short story volume released before really getting into my next book, but like I’ve always said: I won’t rush things if they don’t need to happen right now.

Indie Writing Advice

If you are new to the indie writing scene, or new to writing in general, here are some tips I have for you that have helped me:

1. Write for you, not for someone else. By this, I simply mean that you are writing because it’s something you enjoy, it’s something that brings out your inner self and makes you happy…so why try to write a book to please someone else. It’s a simple fact: not everyone will like every book that will ever be published, so why try to cater to that idea? Write what you want to write.

2. Don’t be afraid to seek help or learn more about the craft. This is especially true when it comes to things like formatting your books, marketing your brand, and developing your platform. If you ever have a question about something, just ask someone, or look it up. It will do you no good in the long run to guess at what you’re trying to do. If you learn about indie writing and have purpose in it, then you’ll be much better off.

Those are two things that I have found to be most prevalent in my experience, and so I want to pass them along to you!

That about does it for this post. Please join my mailing list if you haven’t done so already so that you can get all the juicy details about my projects. And be sure to keep an eye out for my cover release in the next month.

Until next time,

-Eli

Falling Into Autumn

Friends,

Autumn is approaching! I love the smells that are in the air, the feel of the cool morning breezes on my skin, and the sense of impending change that defines the season. It’s one of my favorite times of year, and I’ve decided to use it as a tool to help revitalize my drive and ambition, with the hope of completing my current projects to the best of my ability! Let’s get down to this week’s details…

The Faces of the War Collection

Much progress has been made since last week. I have no more than 3,000 words left to write to reach my target word count (or close to it), and it is my intention to knock out those words in the coming week. I mentioned last week that I received the finished front cover of Imminent, and that I’ll reveal that properly as the release date of the book gets closer. It is still set for December 11, with the aim being that the book will be available for purchase before Christmas – in case you want to gift it to someone! I’ll continue to give updates on this project through this blog, so continue following to stay in the loop!

Inkitt Short Story

There is still time to read my latest short story on the website Inkitt, and to vote for it (if you like it) before the contest ends on September 24. I’ve said it before – I’m not looking to win the contest, but rather to get my content “out there.” If I were to win, great! But if not, I’ll just be glad to have been able to create something new for you, my readers, to enjoy. Let me know what you think!

YouTube

I am looking forward to continuing into the autumn and winter with my videos. I am making it a goal of mine to get into a better habit of recording more throughout the week rather than just one or two days. Videos will still be posted on Fridays, sometimes skipping weeks here and there if my personal schedule is particularly hectic. You can find my videos on my channel, and be sure to “Subscribe” so that you can see my latest videos in your home feed. And tell a friend – I’m always looking to connect with new viewers and followers of my work!

Indie Writing Advice

When writing your first draft, it’s wise not to worry about making it perfect. I’ve said this before – doing that will hinder the flow of creativity and ideas, and will draw out the writing process much longer than it should be. Save the fine-tuning for later. One thing to do as you write, though, is to take a mental note (or actually write it down on a pad of paper) of the words or phrases you often tend to resort to often.

For example, I tend to picture in my mind the scene I’m writing as it plays out. I sometimes have characters nod in agreement or understanding, and I find that I write it as such quite a bit. So what I do is simple: I’ll go into the finished first draft and run a search for the word “nod” and see how many results come up. I’ll then go through and try to replace it with a different action that will convey similar emotion, tension, etc. in that scene. This not only decreases repetitive wording, but it forces me to freshen up my vocabulary and by extension helps round out my characters and what they do. I include this in my editing read-throughs after I finish the first draft. This way, these repetitive actions and dialogue beats will be ironed out and made pretty before handing the story over to my editor, which cuts down on their work in the end.

That’s all I have for this week, but stay tuned as progress is made this week and next, and as the story nears its completion. The publishing process will begin to pick up speed as the autumn presses on, so join me for the ride in the coming months as we move closer to release!

Until next time,

-Eli