Here are the frequently asked questions I receive through fan mail or in person. I’ve provided answers to each of them, but if you have any follow-up questions, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I currently have three completed series and Book 1 of a new series published.
If you haven’t read any of my books, you can start with the first book of any series. I’ve written each so that it’s not necessary to have read the previous books. However, if you want to start from the very beginning of the timeline, here is the order:
THE RHYTHM OF RIVALRY SERIES
(The main character is Adriya’s father, Cleve, during his first year at the Academy, with many chapters through others’ perspectives, like a Krepp, and Desil’s mother, Effie.)
Book 1: Bastial Energy
Book 1.5: The Sartious Mage
Book 2: Bastial Steel
Book 3: Bastial Explosion
Book 4: Bastial Frenzy
Book 5: Bastial Sentinels
THE PYFORIAL MAGE SERIES
(This story takes place on another part of the continent, away from Kyrro, and follows a pyforial mage who hasn’t been introduced in the new series…yet.)
Book 1: Fire Games
Book 2: Wrath Games
Book 3: Pyforial Games
THE KIN OF KINGS SERIES
(The main character is Leida’s father, Basen, when he was seventeen and striving to join the Academy.)
Book 1: Kin of Kings
Book 2: Rise of Legends
Book 3: Shadows of Kings
Book 4: A Crumble of Walls
Book 5: The Edge of Shadow
(25 years later…)
THE MORTAL MAGE SERIES
Book 1: Awaken (Desil and the others will return in Book 2.)
Reading my books through Kindle Unlimited still supports me, in case you came here worried it didn’t. There are two ways to explain how it works. The short version is that I am paid per page read. The long version is that I am not paid anything until you read past 10% of the book. After that point, I am paid for every page you have read and then every page you read from then on. What also happens after passing 10% is the ranking of my book increases as if it was purchased normally. This helps give it more exposure on Amazon, just as a purchase would for any book. The amount that Amazon pays per page read fluctuates each month, but as an author I am happy with the system. Not every author is as supportive, though, because to have your book in the Kindle Unlimited system means you have to sell exclusively on Amazon.
It was during my second year in college that I had the idea for a novel following young adults living together at an academy, training for a war that they figured would never come. Then it does. Being a lover of fantasy, and living with three very different yet interesting roommates, I had a lot of inspiration and nothing to do with it.
I started with writing a novel that was similar to Bastial Energy, finishing it that same year. It was called Chthonic Power and didn’t turn out very well, as described in my bio. For years, I tweaked the characters, the plot, the creatures, the world, and the conflicts, until everything was different from the original. Bastial Energy is the result of that.
Yes, it was overwhelming when I first considered publishing, so I would like to help others as best I can. The publishing industry has changed a lot in the last ten years, more so in the last five. It has become nearly impossible to land an agent if you don’t have awards or experience with writing or publishing that will make your query letter jump out of the slush pile. Fortunately, though, self-publishing is now a great option for those willing to take complete control of their book. Besides writing a book people want to read, successful self-publishing means hiring an editor ($400-1,000 per project) and hiring a cover artist ($ varies too much to list, and it depends on genre and quality). It also means learning how to write compelling blurbs and figuring out how to use keywords. Some people may have trouble converting their word document to the proper format so that it can be uploaded to Amazon or other ebook distributors, but that’s the easiest of everything I listed. All of this stuff takes practice, no matter how savvy you are, especially writing a good blurb! I spent over 20 hours on my first blurb—Bastial Energy. Even though I’ve gotten better at it, my blurb for Fire Games, my seventh book, still took me around 15 hours over two weeks.
It certainly helps your chances for success if you can write quickly or if you have enough patience to come close to completing your second book by the time your first is published—because series sell better than stand-alone books, and releasing your second book will help promote your first. Don’t get discouraged. Most people write for many years while they’re working full-time because their first book doesn’t net them enough money to live on. In fact, more often than not, five books won’t earn enough income for you to quit your job. There’s luck involved, and the more books you write and publish, the better your chances of finding some luck. I feel extremely fortunate that Bastial Energy sold enough copies for me to focus on writing full time. I’m so thankful of my readers.
For more information on the self-publishing world, and everything it entails, I highly recommend regularly visiting Amazon’s writer’s forum: http://www.kboards.com/index.php/board,60.0.html
For those of you who are aiming to land an agent, I recommend Agent Query Connect: http://agentqueryconnect.com/
Both of these forms have helped me tremendously.
In every society, there is a definition of an adult, and it is usually defined by age and sometimes a rite of passage. But there’s a major difference between being identified as an adult and coming to terms with adulthood. In the Rhythm of Rivalry series, teenagers labeled as men and women must discover what being an adult means to them.
My second series doesn’t follow as many characters as my first. It focuses more on developing the protagonists through their shared and individual experiences. The series explores the effects of guilt, power, and faith—whether it be in one’s self, another person, or of a spiritual nature. I believe having faith in the wrong person can be just as detrimental as it can be helpful in the right person, and this message comes across in the series.