A writerly update of sorts: Hardcover?

After almost two years of financial woe, illness, natural disasters, layout snafus, lost files, perfectionist editing, emotional turmoil, and overwhelming workload, the hardcover edition of Psychopomp has finally arrived. Hooray! Thus far I haven’t noticed a single copy with a page printed backwards, any strangely embossed spines, or any hidden pan-flute piping gnomes asking to be inserted into envelopes. If your envelope contains a gnome, it’s not my fault.

The interior layout of this book comes courtesy of one Mr. Clay Fouts, who used GIMP to make the formatting a bit prettier than what’s found in the softcover edition. The cover and dust jacket are the handiwork of Nolan Ashley and myself. You’ll also note some new quotes making their debut on the back, including a few plucked from kind Amazon reviewers who also granted me permission to use their names. I was particularly pleased to receive a quote from Jack Matthews, a former mentor and National Book Award finalist who also happens to be the inspiration for a professor character named Daryl Gates.

All are encouraged to send comments to amanda (dot) sledz (at) gmail (dot) com, because I really would like to know if you enjoyed reading. Thus far the only person with the guts to confess not liking it is my younger sister, who didn’t like the “three stories mashed together” style. Fair enough. It’s not for everyone. I hope it’s for you.

Should you find yourself declaring: “HEY! I want Volume 2!” know that I’m in the process of writing a few grants for myself, in hopes of earning sufficient funds for a month long hiatus from everyday life for the sake of Volume 2 completion. The goal is to complete it by January 2014…in Hawaii. Aloha!

There are some events coming up, starting with a reading at Rain or Shine Cafe on March 28th at 6:30PM. If you haven’t already given my author page a “like” button on Facebook please do. I’ve also been maintaining an author presence on Goodreads, so don’t hesitate to “fan” me there, too!

When I’m not embarrassing myself in front of literary sorts, I’m finishing up Channel Insomnia. Fans of memoir/essays I’ve written over the years may find themselves more drawn to this collection. Much of it was written almost accidentally when insomnia left me nothing to do but monkey slap my keyboard and wait for the sun to rise. This affliction tends to hit me the hardest during daylight savings crime, so this book will likely arrive at completion in April and go to print in May. I’m doing softcover and ebook exclusively, which makes it less useful as a weapon but more useful as a pillow. I always think of you.

I’ll close by saying: the most important asset to authors (particular the unknown sorts such as myself) are reviews and recommendations. If you have the time and inclination after finishing Psychopomp, please consider posting a review on Amazon, Goodreads, Powell’s, Barnes and Noble, your own blog, etc. Each review (especially on Amazon) increases the likelihood that it will appear as a “Recommended” book to readers of certain genres, which means more sales from people who don’t already know me. Recommend it to friends, leave it in a bus station, pass it on to a neighbor, or display it on a shelf with your other treasures. Of course, you don’t have to do these things, but it would be nice if you did. 

Again, thank you all so much for helping my first book find its way to print. Without your support, and the contract created by Kickstarter, I might have found cause to further procrastinate and hoard all my words on my hard drive. That would be a waste.

Thanks again, and enjoy!

Snake chases her tail

Greetings blog-trolling human forms and spam robots!

Right now I’m systematically wading through hundreds (and hundreds) of pages of writing, in an effort to minimize accumulation of Hard Drive Rot (TM) and free myself from the literary phantoms spooking up my mirrors. This means discipline, which is confusing, since I’ve come to understand that word as one synonymous with punishment. Like a lot of you, most evenings I’d rather intoxicate myself on moon juice and monkey-slap my keyboard until nonsensical images formulate themselves for 135 character internet posting, which means something for exactly four minutes until I forget what I was talking about in the first place. Like now…

Anyway, the idea is to finish (and publish) two books that have lived and died and been plagiarized within the confines of my brain meat ten times over into exhaustion. Both books are some diet flavor of done, but require editing and word rearrangement to better meet my perfectionist face-slap standards. I assure you these standards don’t essentially amount to self-inflicted staple wounds and thinly-veiled self-loathing. Really. It’s useful. USEFUL.

While I’m doing that the snooze button on this blog has been pressed, which is probably for the best. When I started it the idea was to post goo-goo-ga-joo vomited onto the screen in 30 minutes or less, with no further editing, to activate the ability to write, release, and call it done. The experiment worked: sure, yeah, I can let something go now. Unfortunately, most of what got posted is clit-lit, verbal masturbation informed by whatever attractive human specimen captured my wandering coffee shop eye. A couple of things didn’t suck, but I shudder to think some unsuspecting sap will stumble upon this website and use what’s witnessed in e-form to measure my writing prowess. That’s bullocks, people. It’s better to buy the books. So I’d better get busy…

Anyway, if you have interest in supporting my completion endeavors (in the monetary sense) please buy the shit out of my stories on Scribd. You can find them here: http://www.scribd.com/fallsapart

Future postings will offer details on my haphazard progress towards completion, and whether my hand wringing has escalated to hospitalization or decelerated into happy space and aum. There’s all kinds of other somethings in between but I’m a chick of extremes and it’s unlikely that I’ll occupy such airspace. Gargle my thoughts, unsuspecting someones. GARGLE.

Love to you,
Amanda