Do you work with an agent or do you represent yourself?
Many years ago I had three different agents—in the pre-E world and they did nothing for me. This time around I have marketed all my own work but after this solid five year, 25 book run I am trying to get an agent again with an eye toward Hollywood adaptation of some of my work.
How many books do you currently have in circulation?
I have 25 books either out or finished and due out from five different publishers.
How have the sales been?
Several of my books have been bestsellers from some of the publishers and I consistently have at least two books in the top ten for two of them publishers.
What are the various publishing houses that you've worked for and what are your impressions of them (both positive and negative)?
I’m published with Epress-Online, Whiskey Creek Press, Gypsy Shadow Publishing, Eternal Press and BooksforaBuck.
I’ve had nothing but good experiences with all of them though sometimes with some of them communication has been an issue-ie. A couple of them take more time than this energizer bunny wants to wait for responses!! lol.
I have had a real problem with many publishers that I decided NOT to publish with because they were terrible with communication—it astounds me that a business can take months to reply to an author they have already told they wanted to publish. I have actually pulled books from those firms when they failed to keep the lines of communications open.
What kind of themes do you deal with in your works?
I’ve written in many genres but the theme of all my work is heroes—I can’t stand making villains into good guys—the anti-hero idea has been carried to the point where serial killers have been turned into ‘good guys’—well-not in my work.
What makes your works unique as compared to other authors?
Action. I have spent thirty plus years with as a fight choreographer and I use all that I’ve learned in that process on the page. In fact even when my stuff as getting rejected I would get a “We loved your action swcenes.” From the rejecting publishers. Later, my editor Joan and publisher Margaret at ePress-Online suggested I create “Them’s Figthin’ Words: a writers guide to writing fight scenes” because of it.
Have you had much success in placing short stories? Where do you send them and what do you use as a resource to find new markets?
I actually sell short stories regularly to a large range of markets. I’ve set myself a goal of finding two new markets a week. I do constant searches and use sites like Ralan.com and Duotrope to find new places to send them.
I am also conscious of ‘re-marketing- finding places that take reprints as a way to ‘sell’ the same story more than once and get it out there—and then often incorporate that story in a collection as a ‘third’ sale. I often take the chance to rewrite or expand the stories so they are not exactly the same, but it keeps it fresh.
It’s a fiction blog where I ‘try out’ some of my novella length pieces as a way of ‘drumming up’ interest in them and getting feed back. They tend to be some of my more ‘out there’ pieces.
Any closing thoughts?
I’ve been very fortunate to enter the book field full tilt at a point where it is changing in an exciting way with the e explosion. I’ve had great editors, and meet many colleagues in a very short time.
I think there is more space for new voices than at anytime since the pulp explosion of the 1930s so I look forward to seeing so many others out there and all the new things that are coming. It’s a great time to be a wordsmith and I consider myself one of the luckiest guys around….