First Cup of Coffee – May 20, 2022

Exciting events for me today and this weekend – I get to interview Mercedes Lackey! – and more and extended thoughts on building an author platform, what’s most important, and being aware of how others do it.




Transcript
00:02.95
jeffekennedy
Ah, good morning. Everyone this is Jeffe Kennedy author of fantasy romance and romantic fantasy I’m here with my first cup of coffee.

00:31.61
jeffekennedy
Didn’t mean to make that extra loud clang. Ah, but you know what day it is say it with me Friday woo Friday may um, something who knows may none yeah. None nebula weekend yay kicked off with some mentoring last night that was really fun. And um, yeah yesterday was my mom and stepdad’s wedding anniversary fifteenth wedding anniversary of congratulations cannot believe it’s been fifteen years that going to that wedding feels like yesterday and yeah, so they were going to celebrate last night but then turns out that stepdad Dave has an infection in his leg still from that accident. So we had to be on antibiotics. So my David had a good idea. Um, and we had door dash send them dessert from the bakery so that they at least got to have a little treat I thought that was such a great idea feel free to use that. Um, um, so let’s see other things I’ve got I don’t think I even opened up where I am on the let me do that. It’s not going as fast as I want it to. But None is is good I have somewhere in the neighborhood of None None or None words to go? Um, none of you even responded. To me yesterday saying I was going to kill all the characters off. Apparently you guys just like didn’t take me seriously I’m gonna do it I swear ah I almost don’t have to kill them off because they’re all about dead right now. Wouldn’t take much really? So if I’m figuring on that about the last ten thousand words are going to be the epilogues which is what I’m hoping for that means I have like None to None words to save the world.

05:56.15
jeffekennedy
We’ll just see we’ll just see what happens a nebula conference panels are starting Today. No hummer and there’s one I want to watch at 10 my time I’m on 1 at 2 30 you could still register if you want to. Um, be part of the conference programming is great. Lots of good stuff happening tonight I get to interview mercedes Lackey Grand Master very excited about that little hummingbird. So panel at two thirty is about combating misogyny and romance Cecilia Tannis our moderator so that should be great looking forward to that looking forward to doing this reception and interview tonight. Lots of good stuff going on tomorrow award ceremony tomorrow night um I sent the trailer to my friend Megan Mori who is getting married in a couple of weeks that I have to deal with flowers for her wedding which. I really want to do I just um, need to do some dealing on that trying to figure out the best way to do that I know what I want to do I’m just trying to figure out the best acquisition method. So um, yeah. I get to see her next Wednesday she texted this morning and we will go um, scope out the site so I can make my nefarious plans. Ah, and then she will buy me a drink afterwards because she’s awesome vaway I sent her the. Yeah bu award ceremony trailer because she has been um, sort of my what do I want to say not objective ear. But um, she’s the person who is like. That I can tell things too that I could tell the secret things to because she’s not involved right? So you know like when you have an Nda and you don’t disclose stuff. You can’t disclose to you know anyone that where it’s gonna go anywhere but you know. Between her and I it’s the cone of silence on many many things so she knew what I went through and so I sent her the trailer and she said I have 3 words with for you and she did them in a separate text each line Neil fucking gayman amen amen sister

11:25.79
jeffekennedy
so um so yeah right now I’m in that kind of weird limbo state of getting this conference done feeling a little tired getting this book done. Looking very much forward to havingbbing the conference behind us as much as I’m looking forward to having the conference and then I will see what happens. Um, as far as getting this book out getting it finished. Ah what I’m hoping is. That I can like get that ending down today and I don’t know if I’ll work on it any over the weekend I’ll see how I feel see if it’s better for me to decompress or not. But if I can get the ending finished out between today and tomorrow. Or tomorrow Monday and then to a couple of long to sound running out of time month I really need to get that ending done today. Don’t I so that I can then have a couple of days to do my really pound words on those epilogues. Fortunately I know pretty much what those epilogues are going to be I just need to get them done and then have a little time to revise and improve not a lot of time to prove. Maybe I should push this release date I have to figure out what is the last day that I can push that release date.

14:29.77
jeffekennedy
I’m torn on that it would make things easier if I pushed the release date give me a little bit more time to get this proofing done in everything. Um, but then I also feel like maybe I can do it so I’ll figure out what is my. Drop dead day to push that release date and then you know if I do push it’ll be like by a week nothing big so um enough about me. What do you think about me. ah ah I did want to talk a little bit about author pal. Platform stuff because I blogged about it on Wednesday and received quite a few notes about it with people saying that they really needed to hear that so I thought I would talk about it a little bit more on here. Hummingbirds do not worry about platforms and I feel like I said should switch by hanging baskets because this one is so much happier than this one and this one’s really getting battered by the wind is it that I just need to move it in some but it’s symmetrical the way it is. I don’t know or I can move it over there so author platforms not hanging baskets. Ah so. For those of you who did not read the blog post. Although I’ll try remember to link to it if you’re interested. It comes from the term author platform comes from the early 90 s when. The internet was kicking into gear and people really started looking in terms of sales platforms on the internet and and reach and in the beginning author platform really applied to nonfiction books. It was in order to sell a nonfiction book you kind of wanted an author who was a perceived expert in the field a celebrity. Ah you know what? I’m saying um, had a following this. That’s part of why this is related to the early days of the internet because. People gain these followings. It was sort of like um Instagram influencers only with blogging and the early bloggers would gain these followings you know and and I remember you know like there were ones that I would follow every day like um, dous.

19:49.47
jeffekennedy
Don’t even know what she’s doing now haven’t looked at her blog in a long time but they gained these huge followings they had these enormous platform. Well so you have to think about things in terms of the New York people and especially the agents. And editors especially the young and hungry ones who are looking at building their careers and being able to sell the house and the salespeople on publishing a book and. 1 of the things that they want and sometimes I will see um agents in particular um will have in their submission materials tell me about your author platform tell me about your social media platform because what they really want. Is these people who already have none or hundreds of none or none followers already that they can target this book towards and you be say to yourself if you are a I don’t even want to say savvy. Um, but if you are following this line of thought to its logical conclusion and it is something that the newbie authors ask all the time is like well if I am a debut author and I have not yet done anything. How am I supposed to have a platform of readers already and. Is it that what the publishing house should be doing well my child this is one of the things that changed with the internet was these publishing houses figured out that they didn’t necessarily have to do all of that expensive and. Splashing of coffee up for the on themselves. That’s why get for getting worked up that they realized that they could make the authors do this especially because they did have authors coming to them with substantive platforms already right? so. It it really was a major change and and how how the business went about selling books because now they could sell books through social media and they really wanted authors who already had social media platforms. Well. You you can see the catch 22 here right? Ah and so that became the push for many authors to begin establishing their social media presence. You know, have your website have your Facebook page have your Twitter following ah before you even sell that debut book.

25:27.90
jeffekennedy
Because to back up a little bit on what platform is if you are not a celebrity or an Instagram influencer or a noted expert in dog feces bull feces. Ah, then what does it mean for you to have a platform. What what it is is. It’s your reach. It is ah who you can and let me get the exact definition here hang on. Okay I found it. And this is not me this is Jane Friedman’s definition which I believe I paraphrased but I linked to her article on it. She has a really great write up on author platform. It’s in the blog post if you go to that you’ll find it. But um. I am finding hint finding it. Okay, so an author platform is an ability to sell books because of who you are and who you can reach all right? So who you are may not necessarily. Be anything right? If you are not a noted expert in bovine feces. Male bovine feces. Ah, but who you can reach is a different thing now a lot of New York would love to have the person who comes with their ready-made. 0 followers. Whatever but do you have to have this no and the point that I was making in my blog post is the way for fiction authors to reach people is through their stories. And so the best way that you can build your author platform is by writing more writing more books writing more stories ah getting that work out there. That’s the most That’s why that’s why everybody says and I’ve been hearing this for decades now. Eep. And it is true that the very best way to market a book is to write the next book. Ah if you can write a series because writing sequels is great for marketing that none book but the more books you write. And I’m going to add this I didn’t say this in the blog post but this is why I’m always emphasizing craft and improvement over marketing efforts write better books get better at what you’re doing and as you get better. You will reach.

30:59.13
jeffekennedy
More readers as you write the things that move you you will reach the people who are moved by the things that you write. You don’t have to change up the marketing things as much as you need to get those stories out there that will actually reach people that’s. Ah, different kind of reach than the salespeople and marketing people are thinking about but that’s because they are sellers of widgets not creators of stories so something to think about. The other thing to keep in mind is that there are other ways to create reach and that is networking in the community being of service to people being helpful to people. Ah, but also the. The success people know this right? This is not a secret that the more you can build your platform your reach the more it will bleed into everything that you are doing So This is why there are. Members of the writing community who claim to do things out of the goodness of their hearts ah and present company accepted because I really do do things out of the goodness of my heart Actually, that’s not true I mean I wouldn’t do this podcast. Only. The goodness of my heart or only because my mother requires it I do it in part to increase my reach right? It’s It’s a way for me to do that. That’s why we do our social media things right? And that’s why it’s important to do the ones that you enjoy because. The more that you come across authentically the better it is but like somebody who for example, puts on a huge conference for self-published writers and says I don’t make any money off of this. Um, I’m only doing this to help out other self-published writers. Well great, but you know what else they’re doing is they’re increasing their reach even if somebody is not making money off of a thing. It’s because they’re investing in the platform. That will enable them to make money later. So a lot of um I don’t know the success community will will employ that kind of language where they will attempt to legitimize themselves by saying that.

36:25.89
jeffekennedy
They don’t charge for doing a thing that they’re not making money off of it and you know, okay, great, but just because someone isn’t making direct money off of a thing does not mean that they’re not benefiting from the thing. So and I’m not saying that they shouldn’t benefit for it from it but be aware of that because there are those who will do any and everything to draw attention to themselves and including bad behavior. Because in a way that’s why they say that there’s no such thing as bad publicity which isn’t really true, but there is a kernel of truth in that because the more people who know who you are the broader your reach. Bigger your platform so on that note I am gonna go in and get to work I hope that you all have a wonderful Friday a wonderful weekend if I see you at nebula conference say hi to me. It’s totally online but there’s lots of virtual chat rooms and that sort of thing. And I will talk to you all on Monday you all take care bye bye.

First Cup of Coffee – May 19, 2022




Transcript
00:00.99
jeffekennedy
Good morning, everyone! This is Jeffe Kennedy author of epic fantasy romance I’m here with my first cup of coffee.

00:35.41
jeffekennedy
Ambrosia.

00:43.21
jeffekennedy
Lovely morning here in Santa Fe today on Thursday May nineteenth yes I was just wondering if I titled the podcast correctly because I always titled with the date and um. Fortunately I did ah so um, lots going on here tonight. We kick off the events for nebula conference mentoring happens this evening. Everything is in place. Everything’s come together I believe um, yeah, events tomorrow. How’s the book coming along. They say who they ask? Jeffe it’s coming. It’s coming. Um I have got of 83600 words and um, so I’ve got like None to go. Um, doable. See how much time I have for that out loud proof. Fortunately I do write pretty clean. So if I have to upload a penultimate version I could do that and fix the commas after.

03:49.51
jeffekennedy
Knowing that I’m not going to have it proofed I have been paying more attention to like instead of punting on Lay Lilade I’ve been actually checking. Although I think I have it right now the one that I don’t. Get is each other and one another and I’m not sure anybody actually cares.

04:39.50
jeffekennedy
Other than the grammarians. So theoretically I can finish it right now. Things are an other disaster and I don’t know how they’re going to get themselves out of it. Ah, but there’s a possibility that the book will just end with them all dying and then they all died I mean I can understand why Shakespeare did that sometimes it’s like yeah and then they all died. So what she’s here. In fact, I well I’ve said this before but I think that the people who go for the tragic ending instead of trying to figure out how to make a romance end happily when they think that they’re being so terribly clever and like oh I’m going to write a romance except it ends tragically. Like actually the tragic ending is the easy ending. It’s um, super easy to have everybody die or everything not work out. It’s much more difficult to figure out how the fuck are they going to get themselves out of this situation. So I guess we’ll find out won’t we um, there’s a panel I want to see tomorrow at None my time. The none sequence of panels for the conference. But then I will um, actually there’s 2 at None but they’ll all be recorded so I can watch them later as well. It’s fun to watch stuff in person because of the chat role and everything you could talk to people and I see my peony is about to bloom. Oh. It’s so pretty glowing pink. So so yeah, quite a lot going on the next couple of days. Did you guys see I might link to it the trailer for the nebula award ceremony. Amazing, amazing people worked on that and it just gives me a shiver of delight because I can’t take any credit for the actual work. But you guys you have no idea what I went through to get that to happen the way that it happened. And I don’t feel like I can talk about it necessarily but Neil Gayman me I got him there other people helped me many thanks to the people that helped me and connected me. Um.

10:08.33
jeffekennedy
But for for reasons that are too arcane and absurd to explain and besides which it would be impolilitic I had to fight to have Neil Gaiman be our toast master in the way that he is. And it’s gonna be awesome and I’m just so happy. So happy without it turned out so that’s often I find the role of people in leadership. Um, which sounds kind of funny for me to say in leadership. But you know is that if you’re doing it right? You step back and and you don’t trumpet your credit like I’m doing right now but you know it’s it’s the other people who do the actual work but sometimes that work of being the one. Determined to have a thing happen and fighting for it and fighting people who don’t want it to happen that just takes a lot sometimes and it’s work. That’s not always noticed by people which is fine. Um, but it is an interesting thing to me. To show. You guys have my nebula nails. Oh here’s a little Ray of sunshine if you’re on video I am got. There’s sort of a deep blue purple with gold sparkleys nebula nails um, anyone else was I going to say on that. Oh on the the leadership thing. Ah so I had 1 funny. You guys know that if you’ve been listening to me for a very very long time because I don’t think I’ve brought it up recently that I think that as human beings. 1 of the things we have to combat is ego is the overweening ego the dominating ego. Um, and that’s partly my taoist perspective ah taoists are very much. Um. Anti-ego. You can’t be None with the dow if you are filled with ego and I think ego drives a whole lot of negative behavior. So I work very hard not to be egotistical. Not to let my ego take over and it’s funny in some ways because it’s this balance between not letting the ego run everything but also taking credit for stuff so quite a long time ago.

15:47.55
jeffekennedy
My very favorite professor from college professor David Hadas who was the one who is the non-practicing orthodox jew if you get that joke my religious studies professor amazing man. Huge influence on me and. He was he was dying. He got colon cancer and he decided and this was very true to who he was that he would not get radiation or chemotherapy. He had the surgery but he didn’t want. To have any of the other treatment because he wanted to spend his last days in the classroom um to doing what he loved best what he was so good at and so oh I’m gonna get over for clem talking to about him. So. I organized a thing where we had a kind of a memorial service for him while he was still alive and I worked with my University Washington University in St Louis and a bunch of my old friends. And we worked with the alumni office and contacted as many people as possible who had been as students. You know they gave us the records and I emailed everybody. It was early days of email you know and invited people to come and say nice things about him and. It was a really cool thing to do and the university dedicated this um one of the salons. One of the I don’t know teaching halls to him they put that put his name on it and it was just we all went back to St Louis it was really lovely weekend. It was funny because like some people that I emailed. Got so mad about me emailing them almost. Everyone was nice but a few people were like take me off of this mailing list. It’s like did you even read the email dip shit anyway, early days of email it would probably be harder to do now only illegitimate spammers or. Don’t to email people anymore. So ah, this one gal did um I don’t even remember she was a reporter and she was doing an article I don’t think it was for the student newspaper. It might have been for the St Louis Post dispatch I don’t remember what paper. But anyway she called me up ah to interview me about the event and so we talked about what was going on and everything and she was asking me about me and she said um, she said well I understand that you organized this event and I said well um.

21:21.61
jeffekennedy
A great many people worked on this event and she said oh okay and then there was like no mention of me in the article at all. It was like I very effectively erased myself which was actually fine. Because I wanted it to be about him and I’d said that to her several times you know that this is to celebrate professor Hadas. Um, but at the same time I was like oh note to self about giving away all credit. Um, you know it’s ah. Because people people will let you do it? So I don’t really remember how I got off on that whole thing. Oh just like leadership credit stuff and that sort of thing. Um, yeah, a lot of things with nebula conference and ceremony were things that I that I masterminded. Or such intermotion. But everybody else did all the work and they were fabulous and everybody will be very glad to have the work done with because it’s been a lot and then next year we will be doing the hybrid conference. Ah, that’ll be exciting moment. Back in person. So ah, the other thing I wanted to talk about is this funny thing about people not being aware of of the order of things of the precedence of naming and the reason this came up was um. My friend posted a picture of purple Columbine blooming in her garden and None of her family members who lives across the country said oh I love those purple and white flowers and I messaged my friend and. Because it made me laugh and I I said it made me laugh that she called the columbine purple and white flowers. So and I totally get this as a regional thing you know like that people on the East Coast may have never seen Columbine but I’m a Colorado girl by births or not by birth exactly but certainly by a nativity. Ah, my mother was born there stepfather was born there I grew up there hometown of Denver Columbine is the State Flower Purple Columbine ah and so it was funny to me that somebody would not. Recognize the flower and big I mean maybe just it’s so pervasive here. But also you know it’s like people who know nothing about the your american west right? and it is a pretty flower.

27:05.89
jeffekennedy
So and she replied back and said yes that um, when she and her son were skiing that there was a trail called Columbine and her son who’s a teenager said. It’s really sad that they named a trail after that town where all of those kids died. So this is the perspective partly of youth and partly of people who’ve grown up in a digital world that they’re not aware of the order of history. So in case, you don’t. Follow that whole thing probably most of you do, but he was referring to the massacre at Columbine high school which took place in Denver it was not a town but Columbine high school Columbine high school of course named for the state flower of Colorado and. Lots of mountains around here have Columbine this are that because it’s a flower that grows everywhere here right? I have none of yellow columbine in my garden blooming right now I should take a picture and of None of them put it on the show notes. Because the peony is not ready for full viewing anyway. So it’s just it’s it’s just a really funny thing and I’ve noticed it happen a lot and I can’t think of the books but like when people pick an older property. And say oh and ah I don’t think this was the exact one but um, like the one that I pulled out in the example for her was wizard of oz like when people complained that the wizard of oz rips off Harry Potter or some of these older fantasy works Rip off Harry Potter and it’s funny because when I none read Harry Potter I thought it was incredibly derivative of previous fantasy works. But once something becomes very large. It supersedes everything else and and there’s also the wherever someone none encounters. Ah, piece of information a story a name then that becomes none in their mind regardless of precedent. It’s a funny thing. And this was making me think too which is just sort of a sideline but I was ah thinking about how someone had asked me a long time ago. Um, and it was someone who was young and they were asking me about your song.

32:24.65
jeffekennedy
By Elton John and Bernie Toppin and they said why do you think he says um, but then again, no in the song. Why why would he do that and I said well it’s it’s meant to Reflect you know they’re like why why wouldn’t he just change that the song if he if he changed his mind and I said well it’s meant to be like this conversational tone and it’s meant to transmit his sense of of uncertainty and insecurity by having that in the lyrics and they said no I don’t think that’s it I think he just. Made the mistake and didn’t change it. It was like no I don’t think that’s what happened, but for some reason that song’s already that conversation’s always stuck with me and I was thinking about Jim Croce’s song. Where he says I’ll have to say I love you and a song and it starts out with I know it’s kind of late I hope I didn’t wake you? Um, there’s I didn’t look up the date on this one I well let me go back. I was wondering which of those came none and the answer is is Elton John and Bernie Taupin that song was 1970 Jim Crowie’s was 1973 um, lot of names I’m gonna have to fix in the transcript. Sorry if I don’t get them all and then there’s. Ah, what can I think of the band. Um I’m leaving on a jet plane has a similar thing. We’re addressing the person and the song where they say um, don’t now have to look.

36:09.97
jeffekennedy
It’s not letting me pause funny that song was written by John Denver I didn’t realize that I was thinking of someone else singing it. Maybe you guys will remember because I’m not gonna keep researching it. But anyway, ah. He says the same sort of thing in there as in um I hate to wake you up to say goodbye and what year was that oh Peter Paul and Mary that’s who I was thinking of um, singing it. Okay, hold on.

37:34.17
jeffekennedy
Okay, so that was 1966 which I should remember because that’s the year I was born. So anyway, this person who I can’t even remember who they are I want to go back and expand on the explanation and say that this was part of a songwriting trend. In the apparently late sixty s through the early 70 s of having kind of having lyrics that were more conversational and directed to a particular person we could probably do a whole essay on this and if you want to take that up. For your ah thesis. You’re welcome to do so so I’m going to go on my way and get some stuff done. Wish me luck. Um, if I kill off all the characters will you forgive me? Ah, ah. All right? Um I hope you all have a fabulous Thursday and I will talk to you tomorrow I’ll do my podcast tomorrow. What the hell it’s only it’s only time you all take care bye bye.

The One Thing an Author Must Do to Expand their Platform

  

GREY MAGIC is out in audiobook! All three Bonds of Magic books are now live on Audible for your glomming pleasure!

This week at the SFF Seven, we’re offering tips for expanding your author platform.

“Platform” is one of those words I’m not terribly fond of, seeing as how it comes from the world of sales and legal wrangling. If you do a bit of digging (but please don’t go down that rabbit hole!) you’ll find that the term arose in the early 90s, along with the advent and burgeoning of the internet, and originally applied to nonfiction works and proposals. (Jane Friedman has a great write-up on it here.) Nowadays it seems like the term gets thrown about by all sorts of agent, editor, and marketing types in seeking the ideal author for them to make money off of.
(Note: there’s nothing wrong with trad-publishing folks making money off of authors. That’s the business model and it can work for everyone involved. I just feel that the ‘must have a great platform’ folks are more interested in the generating moolah side of things than, you know, books.)
Anyway, as Jane succinctly defines it, an author platform is an ability to sell books because of who you are or who you can reach.
So… not all of us, right? Most authors of fiction sell books because of our voice and the stories we write, not who we are. However! What we write is what reaches people, so who we can reach is within reasonable grasp for a writer of fiction.
Are you ready for this? The great secret??

Write more books!

Or short stories. Or create games or draw comics. Whatever medium is floating your creative boat at the moment, do more of that!
I know, I know – the answer is always the same. But that’s because this is the very best advice out there. The most effective marketing for any author is to create more. The more stuff you have out there, the more people you can reach.
Seriously, over the years I’ve seen SO MANY AUTHORS get sucked into focusing on flogging a single work or series to the exclusion of all other efforts. Sure, it can be easy to get focused on wanting a particular work to succeed, and yes, marketing can feel like a clearer path, with lots of vultures vendors out there waiting to take your money with glowing promises of high sales. Writing more stuff is hard.
But creating stuff is why you got into the gig in the first place, yes? So go do it, my friend.

First Cup of Coffee – May 17, 2022




Transcript
00:00.92
jeffekennedy
Good morning, everyone! This is Jeffe Kennedy author of epic fantasy romance I’m here with my first cup of coffee. What do you think should I just say that I should probably like stick to None thing. This is the story of my. Writing life that I don’t stick to None thing today is Tuesday may none outside again. Beautiful morning running a little bit later this morning because the man suggested a walk then we took a walk. It was lovely. He needs to exercise more so I was like yeah I’ll take a walk with you I was seeing what you can see of my gardening stuff there. Got a little bit nicer background now see I’ve got my moved my plants outside I don’t think I mentioned that yesterday because I sort of got off on this whole rant about details details shmi tells right? Um, yeah, so. Ifinally moved all the plants outside decide that the terrible winds were done with and so it was time to do that isaac I also didn’t mention that we had a really nice time on Sunday because I wanted to go to the nursery get a few more plants I got that nice orange poppy see that. Pretty I got a pink poppy too. For some reason I have trouble growing poppies here I don’t know why I don’t know if it’s too dry. They don’t over winter I’ve also realized belatedly because I do not keep a chart spreadsheet of my garden, Alexia. People really do that I am not see okay tangent. But and I’ve mentioned this before that my friend telling me many years ago that she had read that people who have uber organized lives tend to have very messy gardens. And people with messier lives have very organized gardens I am the first she told me about it because she was so incredibly amused that this was like me in a nutshell because it’s like yes and I’ve always been this way. I’m the meticulous volcano right? Leo Virgo Cusp and my life is very calm and neat and ritualized and organized I like it that way I like it peaceful no drama. No um, you know what.

05:18.32
jeffekennedy
Best I can do it no unexpected things but my garden is chaos which I like it that way and she was so amused that this is like exactly who I am I like the absolute. You put my picture next to it. So anyway, I was realizing as I was planting some new stuff that none of my echanasia over winter I have planted I got really serious about it and I think maybe I didn’t notice last year. Maybe I forgot. I can’t remember which year it was but I’ve planted I bet none a connection purple comb flower various stages bear root full plant none of them over winner. So I don’t know our winners are very dry. So maybe they dry out too much. Maybe they get munched by the go fars, you know and people laugh when I say I don’t know how to categorize my podcast is it. A fitness podcast is it a writing podcast is it a. Gardening podcast I don’t know.

08:11.66
jeffekennedy
That was funny like little rock dropped or something ghost. At a dream the other night that I attended my own funeral guys ever had that kind of dream. First time I’ve ever had it. It was funny because I was with my friends and I was going to something else or thought I was going to something else and we were going to this huge auditorium. And there were all of these people here and they had my picture up on you know, like the poster on the easel like they do for memorial services and stuff and um, like little. You know the little pamphlets that they give out at funerals and there were a lot of people there I mean it was a big auditorium and I was like why are there so many people here at my funeral and I don’t know most of them. What does it mean. I was just really kind of funny and it was I wasn’t sad. In fact, I kept thinking they’re all could be really surprised when they find out I’m not dead. Um, so. So that was a tangent and I shouldn’t have gotten on the tantret because now I’ve forgotten what I was going to say not knowing how to categorize my podcast. What did I start out with sorry you guys. It’s like the final two weeks of finishing the book. Plus the nebula conference what brilliant timing on my part and by this I mean it was not brilliant timing I did. Okay yesterday I didn’t get None words but I got enough to keep on track and I’ve got. None words 80400 so I’m getting close. Um, especially since I figure in the neighborhood of um, None to None are going to be my 4 epilogues.

12:44.62
jeffekennedy
Dang I could we wish I remember what I was starting out say going to the garden center. We had fun who knows. But anyway it was fun going to the garden center and it was fun that David went with me. He doesn’t always feel like going out and doing stuff but he felt like doing that and then we went to whole foods something else. We never do because we wanted to look for some good fresh fish and Sunday morning is really time good time. Go shopping at whole foods. And yes, it was expensive even with the prime discount but we did get some really good fresh fish in fresh cherries. There was a lady ahead of me in line who had gotten the same cherries we had in those none cherries that we’ve seen this season. And we’ve gotten 2 bags of it without looking at the price and it turned out they were like $15 a bag. Ah $8 a pound none a pound um and £2 in a bag. So yeah, those were expensive cherries. But the lady in line ahead of me was questioning how much she’d been charged for the cherries and they said oh but there’s seven ninety nine a pound and she said no, they’re supposed to be none of pound and she whipped out her phone and she was showing the ad and. I’ll tell you what this kfuffle took a long time to settle. Ah and I mean we were good. It was gorgeous day. We were having fun out doing our Sunday shopping and she kept apologizing to me and I was like no no worries at all I said we bought some too so you’re you know, doing a service for me and I said it drives me crazy. When it’s a different price on the bin versus at the register or in an ad you know because I think a lot of people don’t pay attention.

16:59.98
jeffekennedy
So we did that and then David suggested we go out to breakfast so we went out to breakfast and that was lovely too and then I came back and planted my plants and that was fun. So yeah I think um. Started into that whole chaos. Oh I guess the whole point was that I I don’t know what happened to the echhanasia things just don’t come back and then I forget about them until like years later when I’m like but wonder what happened to my whole plan to plant a bunch of Ehanesia and make more ihanneia tincture. So this time I um I was complaining to David when we were at the nursery that I couldn’t couldn’t seem to get poppies to grow here and he said why not they should you grew them and learn me and I’m like I know I don’t know what it is know and maybe our son’s too intense I don’t know. And he said well maybe you should try planting them in a different place and which was sort of like oh well gully g whiz maybe I will do that because there’s this one part of the garden that is a little bit of a barren wasteland. It’s very sandy. There. It’s I don’t know. I’m not sure why but things do not thrive there and I keep planting new stuff there because it is the barren wasteland but now I’m realizing that I’m also maybe dooming things to die. So I planted the poppies over here to see if I could get them to grow. There had to move the computer a little bit because the sun is coming so um, what else do I have to say I know I was thinking about things and I was going to write them down and then I did not being bad and wrong. I think I’m going to scoot over here. So I’m not leaning okay, that’s better. It’s whoops have to do this angle a little bit there. Ah the sunshine angle this time of day. So nicer view for me. Not so nice for you. If you’re on video which I don’t you know I don’t look at my stats much but that’s a whole nother whole nother discussion. So let’s see. Yeah I’ve just been thinking hard about the book. How to finish the book. Um and reading.

22:23.30
jeffekennedy
Still doing this read of this series and picking up these other novellas and something that I am considering doing is and I had this long conversation with Grace on Saturday because I think she should consider doing it too. But. A lot of people have asked me about writing from rafe’s point of view from the mark of the talla and he is the only one that I’ve never really written. Well there’s a couple I haven’t written from Raeve’s point of view I’ve not written from marsalll’s point of view 0 point of view careen or crawl. Um, would be hard to write from Karl’s point of view but I had always thought with the None kingdoms books that especially when I was younger and more idealistic than I am now. That I would eventually get my Hbo of me and miniseries. But that series this is what we all think right and I thought that when I got my Hbo miniseries for the Twelve kingdoms one of the things I would do is I would go in and I would write the intervening storylines like what was going on with the people who are not on the page since those books are written from none person point of view of whoever’s book. It is so like the first book. It’s all from Andi’s point of view and but there are other things going on. Ah you know because that’s the thing about first person point of view. So I love first personson point of view because it’s very intimate but also it imposes a certain kind of discipline because the story can only take place where the None person narrator. Is observing so you only know what they hear about so there are all these other so things going on in other parts of you know the world other characters and so forth that Andy only learns about right? We only know about it because she learns about it. So I had always thought you know it would be really cool to write these other storylines and that I would do that I wasn’t planning to be the screenwriter. But I thought I’d write these other storylines I mean it still could happen. You know people get these shows or that um you know like Patricia Briggs is getting ah.

27:59.88
jeffekennedy
a show for Mercy Thompson and when did those books come out.

28:15.26
jeffekennedy
So sorry about that it wasn’t letting me pause. So the none book in the mercy thompson series is moon called and that came out in 2006 you know so 16 years she’s just now getting her series. So anyway, I was thinking recently why wait although it’s not like I’m running out of stuff to write but would it be interesting to rewrite those 3 Twelve kingdoms books at least from the hero’s point of view. I know this is kind of in vogue right now but partly because it’s in vogue. It’s um, it’s an interesting way to regenerate interest in a series I think and I’m observing my own reader behavior. Going to this series which you guys could totally guess what it is at this point. Um, but I’m not going to confirm nor deny since I’ve been complaining about it. I also love it I mean that’s the thing is I really love this series and so it’s been educational to go back and reread. And I know something I was going to say earlier because yesterday I was talking about how I thought that I had not finished that um, whatever it was book None and now I’m on book None something like that. Um. I I have totally I thought maybe I would have to buy book 6 because I thought I fell off the series but I had book None on my Kindle and and it’s familiar. So it’s like did I just like not finish book None and skip to book None or what it’s before I was tracking. Which books I read so now I’m just really curious. What went on but I didn’t remember easily the second half of that book 5 so I don’t know what I did so anyway I um. Starting to think about other things and I can’t do that and talk at the same time I’m thinking about that it could be fun and interesting to redo at least rewrite Mark the Tala from Rayfe’s point of view. Um, because what I’m doing with this series is like I said I’m going back and I’m buying the novellas I didn’t get and I’m probably going to buy whichever book will find out where did I fall off this series for real because I’ll probably end up buying the rest of the books. Um.

33:38.96
jeffekennedy
And it has been a great way to get me thinking about this series again. So I think that there’s something to be said for that. Um, there are readers who will say that it’s a cop out. Ah, and yeah. I mean yeah, but it’s also like a good way to pay the mortgage and also provide fan service because I know people ask me about Rayfe’s point of view all the time I don’t get it so much for the others other than my assistant Carien campaigning for Zyr’s point of view and I don’t know Carien – would you be happy if I rewrote um, what is it? the arrows of the heart if I rewrote that from Zyr’s point of view or does it feel like too much the same story. She wants her Zyr novella she wants. Um. She is none? That’s all there is to it but you know I did those novellas from Ash’s point of view and Harlan’s point of view and I’m my forgetting any I don’t know. See that’s the thing you start to forget your own books too. Anyway, it’s not like I’m running out of stuff to do but um I think that that could be fun. Um, so what else I told you got great magics out in audio book I told you that. Sorcerous Moons is on KU with the new covers I told you that that I’m getting new covers for covenant of thorns that were very excited. Oh and I was going to follow up on this because I had a conversation with Carien – Assistant Carien who has read all my books which is one of her wonderful qualities I talked to her about deleting that scene that I’ve been talking about in Rogue’s Pawn in covenant of thorns and she agreed it should be deleted. She said that? yeah she thought it didn’t match the tone of the rest of the book. So there. We are um and and Megan Ciana Doidge who listens in comments sometimes said made a very good point that just because Jim and I would go back and look to see what had been changed does not mean that the normal reader will do that. I fully am aware that I am not a normal reader if I ever was I stopped a long time ago being a writer reader is different reading what that editor bring analytical bring. So.

39:07.14
jeffekennedy
I am going to delete that scene and then I it was funny because Carien and I were chatting like on Google chat and I said well if anything occurs to you in the other books that should be changed. Let me know and she’s like well actually there is something. And it was something that had never occurred to me that um that she thought I needed to clarify and clean up I was like oh all, right? and opinions. So any of you out there who loved covenant of thorns. Um. If you think that there’s stuff that needs to be tweaked or clarified etc. Here’s your chance and and thank you all for the advice that you have been passing along and I appreciate the support and on that note I’m going to go get to work. And I will talk to you all on Thursday you all take care bye bye.

First Cup of Coffee – May 16, 2022




Transcript
00:00.00
jeffekennedy
Good morning everyone this is Jeffe Kennedy author of fantasy romance and romantic fantasy I’m here with my first cup of coffee.

00:28.10
jeffekennedy
Delicious. Today is Monday may sixteenth and I am indoors for those of you on video you might be able to tell it sound wise too. We had a gorgeous gorgeous weekend. I’ve got lots of gardening done I am a happy gardening camper and last night we got a backdoor cold front. Um, which brass means it comes from the east. So almost all of our weather comes from the well actually every direction but east um. Northwest south ah, every once’s while we get 1 backing up on us from the east and I posted some photos I’ll put one on the show notes of the hermit’s peak fire near Las Vegas New Mexico not Las Vegas Nevada and we’ve been very fortunate. Even though we could see those smoke plumes from our house. It’s it’s actually quite close as the crow flies as the interstate drives. It’s about an hour but that’s cause it’s weird from here. You have to like actually go to go north on I 25 you have to dip south and then you wrap around. But otherwise like I can see the smoke flu plume from my office window which faces east so we’ve been very fortunate that we’ve had these beautiful clear skies with you know that smoke plume you know every once’s will take get really big really soon. Pop up and I’ve been reflecting on how lucky we are well last night we had all the windows open and that back door cold front came in and lots of smoke this morning. So. It’s also still kind of a pretty cool breeze coming from the East. So. Indoors I am I was just reflecting as I was saying my author of spiel that I wonder if I should change what I say do I even know what I write this has been my thing I’ve never known what I wrote but I just wrote a blog post for the. FaRo gals the fantasy romance gals. It’s sorry I think a gen x enough that I find like the whole file row thing really kind of funny the the eliason of ah you know it’s ah sorry some of that’s from french the eliding. Of of 2 words to make them and to to shortened words I try to keep up with changes in language I’m always interested in changes in language. But yeah anyway I did a blog post for them.

06:14.92
jeffekennedy
Which was way way overdue and and it ended up being like 450 words and I sent it to one of the girls till the set time the set and said that there is no reason on earth why that took me months and months to write. But so it did and. It was on epic fantasy romance. What is epic fantasy romance and basically I was saying well that’s what I write is epic fantasy romance. So just now as I was starting the podcast I was thinking huh how come I don’t say author of epic fantasy romance. Maybe I should because that way I don’t have to like say. 12 different things. Ah because I do think it pretty much all falls into epic fantasy romance.

08:04.32
jeffekennedy
Well thinking that there are few exceptions to that. But I don’t know I don’t know.

08:27.88
jeffekennedy
So yeah, actually it was a great weekend I had 2 meetings both quite short nebula conference is next weekend. So our Saturday meeting was the final nebula conference meeting and. After this things will be considerably better. Looking forward to the conference itself I hope everybody else really loves that the programming is gonna be great. Very excited for everyone to to see it. Ah. Had a meeting yesterday afternoon got to be on a Zoom call with oh I don’t know Mercedes Lackey Larry Dixon Connie Willis just another Sunday in my household doing rehearsal for the ceremony. All pretty pretty cool. So um, other than that like I said did I did a lot of hanging out on Saturday that was nice. Did a lot of reading. Still working my way through this reread of this series and now I’m going back and rereading some of the novellas long way that I never got to before It’s very interesting on book 5 it’s interesting. To me to see at which point I fall off a series as a reader book five I am I remember the beginning of I am quite certain I did not finish it. Um, none of the ending. Like from I should have looked to see where it was that I bailed but I I know I didn’t finish that book and I remember being and and this was I was looking when it was and it’s it was like about ten years ago see I’m craftily not giving you the exact date. So that you can’t figure out what I’m writing some of you might be able to anyway, if you know me, but it. Um yeah I remember. Not being happy with the beginning of that book I’ve been unhappy with book 4 and I was unhappy again with book 4 and I I rant it to d ringa about it because that’s her job to listen to me ran. But also it was in a.

13:52.68
jeffekennedy
By way of studying. You know it was. It was very interesting to me the ways in which a crucial part of book 4 did not work for me and it’s very funny in book five I could say the author. Assiduously addressing certain things that had bothered me about book 4 so I think I must not have been the only one who complained because she is almost being ostentatious about some of the things like ah ah. You know, um I feel like I’m gonna give too many details but Leslye Penelope who has wonderful podcast. My imaginary friends I haven’t listened in a while but I assume she’s still doing it. Um, Leslye had talked about. Revising a book and realizing she had forgotten about the dog. This is a thing and and Darynda and I were talking about it too because you catch these things on revision where you realize um, did somehow the beloved dog got left behind. And nobody gave it another thought for the entire rest of the book. It’s 1 reason why a lot of writers don’t put pets on their stories because you have to make sure that they are fed and then somebody goes to feed them and stuff and so there was a little bit of red conning in this book about. Heroines cat and I know I complained about this before with Seanan Mcguire that I kept getting really anxious about the cats until finally she liked and I knew I must not have been the only one because she created in the October day series. She created a next door neighbor who had a key who like if the heroine didn’t show up. At feeding times she would just go feed the cats. It’s like yeah, we all wish we had to have in this case in book 5 there was a bit of rec conning where she like says something about oh good thing that we had a house sit to be there for a couple of months to feed the cat and it’s like oh. but con the house center hu but I mean it it happens if if you forget about these things if you don’t have a good editor if you don’t have a good beta reader to say somebody needs to be feeding the cap. Ah or sometimes it’s like. You put in these details these great character details like a piece of jewelry and you make it be like this thing. Oh she never takes it off right? Great detail, wonderful thing until the writer forgets and somehow.

19:20.74
jeffekennedy
She is never ever wearing that piece of jewel bit again for the rest of the book. So you’re going back over it and you’re like reading your first pages and she’s like admiring her. Well so this was another thing in the book that there was an engagement ring an incredibly valuable engagement ring that got forgotten in several different ways. And it’s like oh admiring her incredibly valuableu engagement ring which you know like she loses an arm when it was the arm that the engagement ring was on. It’s like oh did somebody go back and that ring it’s easy to forget these details. Um and your reader. We’ll notice because and we could come back to this thing that I often talk about where I think you cannot conflate the process of writing with the process of reading because a lot of writers do want to. Say things like well one of my least favorite pieces of writing advice if you are bored the reader will be bored too. No no, no sometimes writing is boring sometimes it takes a long time. Well it almost always takes a long time and going back over details like that is. Meticulous and difficult and tedious tedious is the word I want but your readers are reading this book in 4 to 6 hours so they’re going to remember that. Cat and they’re gonna remember that ring. Ah you know if you take a year to write a book. Of course you’re gonna forget those things so some of that is just having time to revise and I realize that I am very much a black pot in this case because I am well. I did finish my revision on storm princess I revised a bit more on Friday I added more words this week I need 15000 words and I think I I should be all right on this. This is a little bit of I diversion here. But oh I won’t well. Let’s look it up. It means I have to open a few different documents though. So please have patience while we work because I have several different excel workbooks that I have open on any given day. And excel won’t let me change the order of them so I have to open them in order because I am persnickety that way and so the progress count workbook is the third one that I open because it start from the left. Don’t.

24:51.92
jeffekennedy
Ah, so yeah, I’ve got 78000 words I’ve got somewhere in the neighborhood of 19000 little shrive 20000 to add. So if I can get those fifteen thousand this week that would be awesome and then I can fill in the last. Thousand beginning of next week and have time to do my out loud proofing so you know I did this myself in um, dark wizard for those of you who have read dark wizard. There is a. Point at which so so this is part of the writing process is especially when you write the way I do as a gardener or write for discovery you discover things as you go along. So if you don’t want to be this isn’t very spoilery. So I don’t think it’ll matter. But if you don’t want to know anything about dark wizard and you haven’t read it yet tap out now. Ah, but she wears this copper bracelet right? That’s in the shape of a snake and it has little fangs on it and she uses that to keep herself from thinking about Gabriel because she doesn’t want him to be able to find her. With his sorcery. So as I was writing along I’d gotten to the point where she was on the run and being really really careful. Not to think about him so that he wouldn’t be able to triangulate her position and. I thought oh well she needs something to to remind herself and I’ve used this device in a couple of books I also gave it to Stella in the heirs of magic book books so she loses the habit after she falls in love I’ve like I like doing that. But it was something that I taught my stepdaughter to do because my stepdaughter would suck on her too littlest fingers and they got all shriveled up and so she would put a rubber band around her wrist and every time she wanted to suck on her fingers when she decide she wanted to write the habit she would snap the rubber band. And that little bit of pain is just enough to start teaching you to break that habit. So I ah gave that to Nick as well in dark wizard that she would have this bracelet to poke the fangs into her wrist and it kind of sometimes she does it hard enough to draw blood or you know don’t think about it because she’s. Obsessively thinking about him of course. So then I had to go back and layer in when she decides to get the bracelet and you know dug it out of virtualry box and that’s just a few lines you know like oh she’d gone and found it and dug it out of her jewelry box and all of this.

30:29.72
jeffekennedy
And it was all really cool and I had written like up to midpoint of the book and given it to readers to read and so forth and I was going to stop there I’d given it to page Sarah I was going to stop there but then i. Start and I was gonna move on to something else and I just couldn’t I just had to keep writing this book. Well I had to keep writing this book but I totally forgot about the bracelet. So upon revision when I went back over the whole thing. It was like oh guess that. Copper bracelet she never ticks off got taken off at some point. So then I had to go back and and weave it through and when somebody has a familiar or a pet I do the same thing. And go back and make sure that that it’s accounted for in our daily lives we have so much complexity that we’re we’re not even aware of all of the things that that we are responsible for that. We do just for daily life. It’s a level of complexity that we can’t replicate in a character in a book because it’s a boring amount of detail but you have to be aware of which details are critical ones I do wish that more authors would include pets in my work. Because very very few people do not have any kind of pet so we accept this about our characters, especially these kickass ones that are out you know like running all around the world fighting evil and so forth. But in reality if you want to portray someone who is I don’t know a pretty much standard person in some ways there are going to be pets with animals are a huge part of our lives. Many good reasons so I didn’t mean to get off onto that whole thing. But that’s how it is here at first cup of coffee I had a couple things that I was actually going to talk about but I’m almost out of time something else I was thinking about. This is kind of a short thing is wanting to pay attention to also especially for female characters is do they have friends and especially female friends.

36:05.66
jeffekennedy
And if they don’t have female friends but why not ah a woman who has no female friends is and and I have known women like this who are sort of quasi friends but some women are. I don’t even want to go into all the reasons why I think it is but some women are not good at being friends with other women. There’s like always a layer of well I’ll say competitiveness there and it’s it’s a problem and sometimes it can manifest in stories where you have. A woman surrounded by men all of her friends are men you know like lovers and so forth and it’s like why aren’t you why is it she relating to another woman and sometimes an author will like implement a best friend. Oh this. This gal is ah is her best friend Leon she’ll say oh you know my best friend but if she never has actually an onpage conversation with her best friend it makes you wonder if well maybe that girl doesn’t think the heroine is her best friend because she ain’t there for her right. she’s just um she’s just a prop I think this is somewhere where there are a lot of reasons for it but the bechyll test is very useful. It’s supposed to be a test of. Of female representation and stories I think it came from gaming created by Allison Beckel but it’s are there it’s It’s a very very simple test is there more than one female character. Ah do the 2 female characters have 2 or more. Have conversations with each other um without men present that 3 are not about men and it’s amazing. How many stories fail to meet that test and I would definitely encourage any writers who want to have. Well-rounded female characters that they have conversation with their friends about things that are not about men and without men present because women’s lives are rich and full without men being in. That we have to say that all right on that note I’m going to get to work. Wish me luck and I will talk to you all tomorrow take care bye bye.

First Cup of Coffee – May 13, 2022




Transcript
00:00.71
jeffekennedy
Good morning, Everyone! This is Jeffe Kennedy author of fantasy romance and romantic fantasy I’m here with my first cup of coffee.

00:32.70
jeffekennedy
Delicious.

00:45.25
jeffekennedy
Today is-say it with me boys and girls and other-Friday woohoo and it is Friday May thirteenth Friday the thirteenth it’s a magical time. Magical day and this weekend is a full moon and a full lunar Eclipse. So. It’s a great time to put new things into motion. Ah launch new dreams tie off old stuff take advantage of that element of chaos. To make a turnabout in your life. It’s like the midpoint of the story speaking of which I have completed the revision so far of the ah. Storm princess and the Raven King I’ve got something like 76000 words on it. So in the neighborhood of 20 to 25000 to go to lay down in the next week or 2 really to. Plus a little bit of time to revise those last one hundred pages or so is about what it works out to um, wonder if that’s exactly right? Well wallpark little bit less than 100 pages. Yeah, because it’s the last 25% I passed the act 2 climax and yeah, it’s now racing towards the end I hope.

04:13.77
jeffekennedy
Ah, so um, so yeah I think I’m feeling pretty good about it and that I’ll do my out loud proofing and see how that works I might just sit out here in the grape arbor and read aloud to myself that’ll be entertaining I wonder how long it’ll take I’m planning on spending like. 2 really intense days doing that. Do we think that’s enough maybe I’ll work long days I won’t limit myself to my 3 hours so um right now I’m feeling good about it I have to. I do have to do 3000 words a day to get that done so we’ll see where I am by the end of next week right? And next weekend’s nebula conference. So for nebula conference if you have not. Registered consider it. It’s gonna be an amazing conference The programming is really good I’m really pleased with how it’s come out. It is um, yeah, it’s it’s gonna be great hundred and fifty dollars all online come and join us lots of opportunities to chat and so forth. We also have the sub what auction going on and you can bed on a coffee clutch with me ah come and chat I’ll answer questions talk to you about whatever. Um, and thank you in particular to Meghan Ciana Doidge for giving me some. Talking me out of my tree yesterday with the comment on Instagram I appreciate that Meghan I I was really freaking about trying to get 10 titles up but Meghan gave me some some wise perspective on it doing the rapid release on the fantasy romances and then just. Maybe doing the rest on ah you know, just getting them out there for glomming I did ask the question is do we think people glom wide as much as they do on k you and maybe the answers. Yes. For a while Sorcerous Moons was doing really well on k u or at least well for me. But now it’s dropped off again which means I should probably advertise it right? or do some sort of promotion I also need to port over.

09:44.13
jeffekennedy
Reviews from the old set. But um, yeah, so and and Grace was just Grace and Jennifer Estep both gave. Ah they were not as comforting as Meghan was but um, they’re a little bit more tough love with me. Because they were just like get those books and get them up. Get them up and get them earning Jeffe they were immune to my whining about having to pay for cover costs but Grace had good insight where she said you know, get Ravven to do the covers. For the 3 fantasy rodent ances for covenant of Thorn’s and and Megan pointed out that I really should get those up now because Fae romance is so big right now and then I make change I wonder if I have to change the bcc on those. Have to look at them I know that I can’t use the harlequin copyright anymore or Carina copy you know, logo or anything like I’d want to and I can’t use the covers but I have to look into whether I even want to use if I can use the bcc that they have back cover copy. Um, even if I wanted to do I want to? We don’t know I have to look it this I haven’t looked at these books in forever. Um, Meghan suggested that I could do well revens making a cover for the first book. That I could hire someone to do a line edit of that thick first book to fix whatever is bothering me well you know these have all been professionally edited by really you know that was deb nemo who is a great editor I thought what I would want to change is some of the content and I am considering. Deleting a single scene except I went to write her coffee yesterday and had a wonderful breakfast with ah Jack and Jim my writer buddies Jim Sorensen and J. Barton Mitchell um Jack’s doing that great podcast, Derelict. The story podcast I should link to it. It would be nice of me. It’s I I’ve listened to the first episode. Um, you know I don’t listen to podcasts which I find very ironic since I do this podcast? Alas, so um. A waffley. Oh so Jack and Jim had good insights on it because Jim in particular because he pointed out. He said if you take out that scene. There are going to be people like him who.

15:22.10
jeffekennedy
Will inevitably go back to the original to try to figure out which scene was deleted so I’m only calling attention to it I don’t think he has a legit point there because I would do that too. Ah and then. Jim also made the point that I have to weigh if I’m really thinking about fixing this book. You know is my time better spent is it worth more and sneeze. He said is my time worth more. Minute for minute hour by hour spent fixing this old book or writing a new one to which the answer is obvious my friends. So so I don’t know I don’t know what I’m going to do. But the good news on the covers is Ravvenjust talked to me the other day and because I have a cover a month slot with her for the rest of the year and I’ve been planning to have her do the. Cover for the standalone of familiar winter magic but I think what I’m going to do is hold off on that because if you guys want to read it. You could still read it and fire of the frost and I’m going to have her due for may June and July the 3 covers for covenant of thornness. And then um, my one concern was is I’m going to try to come out with that bonds of magic book number 4 as yet untitled and I’m hoping to have that out by the end of August and my slot with her is the latter half of may. So I was like oh would we be doing the cover the you know the end of August but then I couldn’t do rapid release and all this you know so I was like trying to juggle this and serendipitously enough. My slot is in the early part of August and she said her August is really booked so she might try to move it up anyway. So I’m just going to get her the information for all for those covers and we’ll do bing bang boom and I’ll be forking out a bunch of money. The other thing that’s going on is I mean the good news is good news bad news great news is grey magic is now available on audiobook whoo so that whole series is available on acx the weird and annoying news is that like book 2 bright familiar. They have put grey magic in erotica.

20:56.65
jeffekennedy
Which it’s not erotica I mean it’s that’s hot. It’s sexy. So this is something else I’m going to have to address because I asked them to take bright familiar after erotica and they did not first book is not in erotica so I’m sure that like the Ai tags certain words or something like that i. Doubt that a person’s listening and doing that unless I’m wrong if any of you know how this acx categorization thing works let me know. But I think I’m going to have to like get a person and argue with them about it but I need to do a little research I need to see like where the you know where are they putting. Like Jennifer Armmentrout an Sarah J Maas you know, like where’s book 2 of acotar if that’s not an erotica then my book shouldn’t be an erotica It’s not that I’ve been ding against erotica of course. But since I have written erotica. But it’s um, ah I don’t think that’s what these books are and I’m afraid it’ll mislead people mislead listeners. Um, maybe if I take it out of acx and go wide which I will do. After gray magic has been in there for ninety days but um now that’s irritating. So um, so those things are going on. Doesn’t seem like I have a lot going on it feels that way I mean I guess it’s all good things champagne problems right? Um, yeah, so there was 1 other piece of news I was going to give you guys but I don’t know what it was now. I don’t know. Yeah well for those of you who follow me on like Facebook or Twitter did put up yesterday. Ah, my new chinese proverb where and many people asked me about it. Ah. Mary Robinette commented on my Twitter saying oh no and this raises questions. So it’s like okay yeah, because I said she who puts ice cubes in her pocket will receive a unhappy unpleasant surprise something like that. So why did I put ice cubes in my pocket. It was my jacket pocket I was wearing ah my sifwa jacket actually and so the deal is and I think longtime podcast listeners will remember that I was going through this thing of.

26:16.79
jeffekennedy
How do you keep an orchid alive because I have my trader Joe’s orchid you know like don’t we all have a trader Joe’s orchid at 1 point in our lives or several because we can’t keep the fucking things alive right? And so it’s a challenge. How do you keep your orchids alive and and it’s one. Those ironies because they’re like $5 at trader joe’s so you know it’s like not, it’s not a monetary thing but it’s like this gardening challenge I have not been able to keep the orchids alive but I recently learned you know because everybody’s like well you have to water them just as the small amount or the roots rot and all this. So I discovered somebody told me the the miracle trick is you water them with the ice cubes. So you just put ice cubes in the pot with the orchid and like once a week or whatever twice a week and the way the ice cubes melt it. Feeds the water to the roots at a rate where they can absorb it without rotting and apparently the cold is also good for encouraging a rebloom. So my trader joe’s orchid I have kept alive and it rebloomed um and I think i. Post pictures I was very excited and and the blooms have lasted It’s very happy orchid. So what I do is I don’t have a super regular schedule on watering it. But um, the way our icemakerer works is sometimes does everybody have a fridge icemaker. For those of you who have french icemakers maybe ours is substandard but sometimes it spews ice cubes on the floor. So when ice cubes spew on the floor I take them and I put them in the orchid. Yeah, it’s recycling right? The conservation of water and all of these things. So. Yesterday I was getting another glass of water and I had several things to carry back to my office and there were ice cubes that had spewed onto the floor and I didn’t have enough hands to carry the ice cubes and all my things and it’s not like I’m going to make 2 trips. So I stuck dicekeeps in my pocket because I thought well it’s it’s just from here to there right? you know walk from the kitchen to my office. It’s not far I could have made 2 trips but you know let’s let’s not get crazy here. So inevitably I forgot. By the time I got to my office that I had the ice cubes in my pocket which is a neurophysiological thing have I mentioned that to you guys recently I know I’ve talked about it before but there are legit studies that have shown that our brains respond to us passing through.

31:55.96
jeffekennedy
Portals or gateways and when we go from one room to another. We do an automatic wipe of recent short-term memory. It’s a way of clearing the trash out of our brains because it’s it’s kind of um, it’s a survival thing right. It’s like our brains know that when we go from the kitchen to the office or we go from 1 place to another that we don’t need to retain all of the information about the place we were just in so it does like this little cleansing wipe. So that we can absorb information about the new space that we have moved into it’s it’s protective right? You want to be not thinking about the old space but ready to react to danger in the new space or opportunities in the new space. This is why? Um, we all joke about it and some people worry about it. But this is why very often when you go to get something in the next room you forget why you were there. You forget what you were going for. Ah what you have to do the trick around this. Is like if you decide if you’re in the kitchen and you decide you want to get a pad of paper from your office is just keep thinking about that pad of paper as you pass through the doorway it totally works you guys I do this all the time but I had not been thinking about the ice cubes. As I moved into the next room so there I was in my office and I was working and there was cold drippiness on my leg and I was like why? Ah why is there cold wet water on my leg and I was like ah. Ice cubes. Alas, so um, so yeah I see I feel like things are working out things are positioning. Um. Maybe you hear from agent Sarah on some opportunities and yeah, oh I guess I didn’t finish saying what? Grace’s advice was on the other books on the contemporary bdsm books was she suggested just doing very simple covers for those. And I think that’s probably a really great idea and she even is encouraging me to make my own covers which I never do. But I’m really going to have to go look at the contempt media samorotic stuff. So who’s writing at it anymore.

37:23.59
jeffekennedy
And if anyone knows who’s who are the hot writers I just have not been paying attention. But I’m going to have to go renew some friendships there and find out like the best way to put those books up and see what kind of covers people are doing I’ve been immersed in the fantasy romance stuff for so long that I’m really just out of touch. So yeah, Jack and Jim were riffing on like what kind of simple covers I could do they were like black with a pair of Handcuffs I think they were terribly amused so I may do something like that and just get those up. As to your suggestion Meghan on you know, just having Ravven do all those covers. She won’t do the the contemporary erotic stuff that’s not her stick so she’s she would say no I won’t even bother to ask. But I do have other. Cover artists I could ask to do it I could ask the gal who did the sorcerous moons covers. Um, ah I’m going to be paying so much money for covers. Maybe I will try to do them myself. Grace who refers to herself as Mrs Krabbs is big into saving money and doing. Tiy so I don’t know maybe I’ll use book brush to make the covers see if I feel creative. But for this weekend. It’s gonna be a lot of gardening I think maybe some book cover creation. Anyway, I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and ah. That you get to do all the things you want to do. We’re supposed to have beautiful weather. No wind I’m going to be outside twenty four seven I got to sit outside last night and have um a brandy and read my book at the fire table and it was so nice. Deb the wind not blowing had the. Windows open all night ah such a relief so you all take care I hope it’s a magical weekend for you and I will talk to you tomorrow? Oh no, not tomorrow. What am I saying I see that’s that tape recording I just went into auto mode I will talk to you on Monday. You all take care bye-bye.

First Cup of Coffee – May 12, 2022




Transcript
00:00.37
jeffekennedy
Good morning, everyone! This is Jeffe Kennedy author of fantasy romance and romantic fantasy I’m here with my first cup of coffee.

00:15.70
jeffekennedy
Delicious coffee elixir of life. How the hell are you guys today is Thursday may twelfth. Yeah, ah, it’s um. Fairly warm I mean coolish warm here in Santa Fe and overcast this morning and it’s not windy so I’m out here in the great barber for once in a straight on shot because I don’t have the rising sun in my face. Ah, it was really nice to wake up to a little bit of moisture in the air and the little bit of cloudiness stillness is supposed to be windy today but maybe after this, it’s come back off although I see. Mid next week is looking Windy again. My I move my plants outside this weekend I I know that this is something if you have listened to this podcast for a long time. The moving my plants outside is always a yeah, an event. It’s a deal you guys and I’ve left it long this year because I didn’t want him to get battered by the wind. But I think I’m going to go ahead and do it. Um, there’s one that I hesitate to move out to the front porch with this monkey tree. That’s really great. And it’ll get torn up by the way and but then the leaves grow back. So I don’t know I shouldn’t obsess. Ah, so um, ch ch ch things things something rustling nearby. What could it be a mouse There are a lot of rodents again this year

02:18.18
jeffekennedy
Yeah, so I make good progress on the on the book yesterday. Um I was still not done with this revision. It’s still going slowly but on um Tuesday I made it through 47 pages and yesterday I made it through 41 which so that’s going considerably faster than I was I’ve also been adding a lot of words I’ve added well so far for this revision I’ve cut almost 2000 words and I’ve added um. Trying to forgot what the actual ad was well I’ve gone up a net of nearly 4042 pages to go so theoretically I should finish the revision today I did not mean to hit that excuse me. We do not need to open a Zoom conference. So I’ve got writer coffee today. But otherwise I hope to get to that revision and can add those remaining words at least with this revision something happened that I was hoping would happen in that. My overall word count revised down. It’s not going to be 102000. It’s gonna be like a 98000 which I mean I realized that it may sound immaterial if it’s like 95K, 98K or 102K but I mean it’s a difference of a couple of days of how long it takes me to write it. So I take 98000 is probably going to be spot on. Glad for all of you who are excited about the 4 epilogues I’m excited about the 4 epilogs. And then we shall. Um, yeah, get this one out there. So speaking of getting books out there I had kind of an exciting exciting slash daunting event yesterday ah congratulations are in order because. I got the rights reverted to all 10 of my Carina Press books 10 books people. It feels like the end of an era um Carina press was the first to publish me well almost. Um, LooseId and Ellora’s Cave each published one smallish thing for me I did Petals & Thorns with LooseId and then the the vampire books my vampire books in um, with Ellora’s Cave.

05:09.20
jeffekennedy
Doing feeding the vampire with Ellora’s Cave because they wanted Petals & Thorns and there was communication problem and dhad already taken it but those were all smallish books. Um. More so smallish presses whereas we had such high hopes for Carina back in the day because it was um harlequin’s digital imprint. We thought we were gonna get like the whole harlequin marketing machine behind it. Some things manifested other things didn’t um. Carina was I loved working with Carina I really did and I still loved the people at Karina I learned a lot there. They were great they were great to me Angela James you know, started out running. Ah. Press came over from Samhain books which they did pronounce Samhain I asked the owner once ah, you know there’s just a lot of history. There. It was a really heady time. You know it was around um the around 2000 8 2009 and it’s just funny to look back on. Yeah so 10 books 10 books I did with Carina will be mine now I know I will make more money on them selling them myself. So that’s great. Ah, however, this is ah leading to a bit of angst. It’s like I have to do covers for 10 fucking books people I’m tempted. Maybe I’ll package some of them I don’t know I need to like figure out the smart way to do this. Some of them are smaller. Um, contemporary bdsm novellas. In fact, 7 of the 10 are contemporary Bdsm and which is like not full on my brand right now. But so I have to figure out how I want to do this. It requires thinking and planning and marketing savvy and I’m not feeling really equal to the task at the moment and then the 3 that are fantasy romance my covenant of Thorn’s trilogy I’m going to have to make up my mind about that because do I do I fix them I’m tempted to fix them at least the first one there. Yeah I know I’m so I’m almost inarticulate about this.

08:00.54
jeffekennedy
Because I go back and forth right? It’s like do I because Rogue’s Pawn, the first book in Covenant of Thorn’s was the first novel I ever wrote and I revised it multiple times and I can see the ways now that it is flawed some people love it. I don’t get many. People loving it the way that I used to but that could be because of Carina and I know that I can recover rebrand remarket. Ah you you know it’s so funny because like the the bargain with the fae king kind of thing is such a. Big deal in kindle unlimited right now in fantasy romance. That’s what that’s what these books are they’re about a scientist who ends up in Faerie and makes a bargain with this ah Fae, Rogue, and as usual and this sort of my my blessing and my curse I was I was kind of ahead of my time on this stuff but also my fairy my landa fairy my fay are all more alien and weird. What many people are writing these days and I think I mentioned this on here before but I saw someone tweeting about reading it and they didn’t tack me I I don’t remember why I picked it up I think maybe it came up under because I like I a search for my name and. Somebody said they were picking them up and were all excited and then she didn’t enjoy it. She said um that she felt like she’d gotten whiplash between the whimsy and the darkness and I don’t know maybe that’s my brand I feel like this is the spot I live in. But I’m wondering if I should go through and smooth it out. Also there is this section of the book. That’s very very dark that is stuff that I did not want to write I wanted it to be there only in flashback and my editor really pushed me um, like 3 times i. Ended up like right? she kept way more and more and more and so I ended up writing this whole scene and I know that that’s something that people really react to very strongly because it is ugly. It’s meant to be ugly but I never meant it to be on page so I’m really tempted to go in and take that out. Um, frankly I’m you know like on the other end of the spectrum I’m tempted to go through and rip the whole thing apart and redo it which no I know I can’t do that I won’t do that and so then the other extreme is not to touch them at all and just.

10:49.23
jeffekennedy
Take the files put them up have done buy stuff to pay for covers covers for 10 books 4 of the books are novellas that um are my facets of Passion series and those are um, sapphire platinum ruby and 5 golden rings and 5 golden rings was supposed to be called oro but Angie James thought that no one would get oro which means gold and. And it takes place in Mexico and it was in a holiday anthology. So what do you think? do I keep the name the same do I change it I’m tempted to put it back so many things so many decisions you guys I know that this is a champagne problem I know this is a good problem to have I i. Bitched in 1 place on a forum and I think and really I only got hearts which I think was like good problems to have Jeffie I have 10 books that I can release.

12:04.45
jeffekennedy
Now. So then the other three I guess I I didn’t say the other three are my um, falling under books which are full length contemporary bdsm novels and. So one way to approach this is to put up the ones that have sold the best right? and it’s definitely those books those books I’m actually surprised they reverted the rights to me on those books because they um they they still continue to sell pretty well. But I mean I might just try to set up a deal where I have like a release every thirty days on Amazon right? Just keep the momentum going along with my other books I’m releasing I do have a. Reserved spot with my cover artist Ravven for the rest of the year and probably we’ll just keep doing it that way I can always cancel but I can get her going on these covers and they’re not horribly expensive. They’re not what other people. Pay you know, like for other stuff but it’s still a financial investment right? Oh gray magic is live. Okay, so now all 3 bonds of magic books are live in Audiobook. I just got the message last night so I need to get those going for some reason acx put the second book in erotica and I don’t know why and I asked them to change it once and they haven’t done it. Feel like it should be in the same categories as book one. So I’m going to have to deal with that more business e things right? business business. So that’s good news. It’s it’s like that. Ah, but it it really is good. News. But. Ah, did make me think and I even made this note the other day and then forgot to oh no I think I made it later on the day on Tuesday but you know 1 thing about earning your living as an author which we talk about that. It’s the dream and I did think that this was funny. Um. Ah, few weeks ago on the sf f seven where I blog one of the other writers said that because we said um, are you a full time writer is it your dream if you are you know like how do you do the finances and so forth and one of the.

14:47.41
jeffekennedy
Writers said that they are absolutely a full time writer that they’ve always been a full time writer and just because they have a day job doesn’t mean that they’re not a full-time writer. Ah, you know and it’s like okay, but you’re you’re kind of mincing words here. This isn’t what we’re talking about when we say full time writer. It means it does mean a few different things right? and and people want to be able to claim it because it’s like some kind of badge of honor which I don’t. Think it should be because being a full time writer I think means that you don’t have another job that you don’t have any kind of day job or so you know most of us have like side gigs of teaching or other things but not. Salari not consistent income. Um, that’s what I think it means but just because you’re a full time writer does not mean that you are supporting yourself with your writing and that’s really the dream right? That’s what we want is like this. Have the career where you support yourself as a writer a lot of writers are subsidized by a salaary benefited spouse which is no shame I mean that’s that’s great. Um, and I wish I had that because it would be much It’s just a lot more security. It’s much easier because the thing about it is that yes, this is the dream that you don’t have another job that you get to write full time but you know the thing is is it is a fair amount of pressure that. You know, just like I’m feeling with finishing this book where you know like I really want to get it so that I get that money from Amazon you know thirty days earlier right? if I get this book out by the end of may then I’ll get that money by the end of July and I’m looking ahead to my finances. Later in the year and it’s like I need to have a certain amount of money coming in every month so that I can keep us afloat and you know it’s one of those things where I think a lot of us think that earning being a full-time writer supporting ourselves as a writer means that we’ve made it. That we’ve gotten there and as I’ve talked about many times making it is an illusion right? That’s there is no made it there. You know unless you really hit the jackpot as a writer where you make a whole slew of money enough so that you never have to worry about it again.

17:29.26
jeffekennedy
Then you’re always hustling. You’re always looking towards that new book to releasing those new books just like I’m talking about with my reverted writes books you know, getting that you know packaging I’m and getting them ready to go. Um. So. It’s just something to consider because I think a lot of us think if you and I certainly did for a very long time like I had my number in my mind when I still have my full time career type job I thought well once I make enough money from my books. To be equivalent to and I 2 milestones right for my salary. What I was making as an environmental consultant which was admittedly a high bar. They paid me well which was wonderful of them and then if I figured in like the value of my benefits and I thought well you know like if I could get into that area. Then I’ll be fine right? because I’ll be bringing in enough money from the books to be equivalent to my salary but the thing is is even though you’re bringing enough money from the books at 1 time doesn’t mean that you will continue to do so because it waxes and wanes and things go in and out of fashion. That’s another thing with my covenant of Thorn’s books is I admit to a fair amount of insecurity about whether these books are really good enough and whether people will like them or if I should retire them of course that’s the eternal insecurity of the altar right? so. Um, yeah, that’s where I’m at I really feel like I need to hire someone to do promo for me to do to be a publicist and maybe I need to circle back to that because the 1 person I tried to contact they never. Got back to me. Oh well. So um, yeah I’m gonna go get this podcast up and then go out and have um, we’d still call it writer coffee. Although one of the guys wants to call it writer or brunch because we do sit there for a couple of hours and eat so I’m going to a new to me place in Santa Fe not new to Santa Fe because it’s been here since the mid 70 s apparently and I don’t think I’ve ever been there while the other guys suggested I was like never been there looking forward to it so I’m gonna do that. And I hope you all have a wonderful Thursday and I will talk to you all tomorrow take care bye bye.

Converting the Reluctant Reader

Our topic at the SFF Seven this week is our favorite reader interaction.

Once we get past the fact that ANY AND ALL positive reader interactions are a balm to every writer, then we come to the inevitable truth that the more recent ones spring to mind first. I am so blessed to have each and every one of you out there sending me happy messages about my books. I treasure each and every one, I really do.

But I’m going to pick a recent one that really thrilled me because of the unusual source. You’ll see what I mean when you read it, but I can preface by saying this was from a new friend, a guy my age(ish), who bought DARK WIZARD to be nice. He was in town visiting and bought a hard copy to support me and my local indie bookstore. I seriously never expected him to read it.

Then I got this email:

I, at last, had time to read “Dark Wizard” over the weekend and I was so impressed!

It’s totally not my sub-genre, and would never consider reading the book if someone gave me a plot summary, but it is so well executed and such a page-turner – I was really sucked in. And, despite myself, I want to read the rest of the trilogy. What really amazes me, is that you have such an extensive bibliography – you must be writing very fast – but the quality is so high – no idea how you do it.

Is there anything better than converting a reluctant reader? Not in my book! (lol)

First Cup of Coffee – May 10, 2022




Transcript
00:00.00
jeffekennedy
Good morning, everyone! This is Jeffe Kennedy author of fantasy romance and romantic fantasy I’m here with my first cup of coffee. Ah, delicious.

00:20.95
jeffekennedy
My mom said that I sounded perky on yesterday’s podcast which I guess I was I think I am still perky. Um I am in the throes of this book was book. Talking with one of my writer friends last night and she said well you’re doing a lot of brain work. A lot of thinking which is true I am which is you know for those of you listened a lot. No is not my favorite way to do it I prefer to um stream from the subconscious and this one I’m thinking thinking taking and yeah, so the revision is going slowly. I am typically when I revise I can get through about 70 pages a day. That’s my average. So sometimes I do a lot more than that and that’s typically with like 3 hour sprints so you know Twenty Ish pages an hour 20 to 30 and on this revision I’ve just slowed down overall. But on all my things I’m doing 28 pages a day. Ah day. So the revision’s taking a long time I still have a hundred and thirty pages to go I know I’m going to cut them cut some cut them won’t cut them full stop I’m gonna have to cut some words. Because as I suspected an argument that Lena and Ryan have later on is almost verbatim an argument that they have earlier on so I’m going to have to reconcile the two. It’s not that they can’t have essentially and and amusingly enough. The argument is about how they always have the same arguments. So I don’t know maybe it’ll stay sometimes I wish I could be like the minimum viable product people I’m always thinking about that when I’m laboring over a book like this. Ah. Because as I mentioned you know these books don’t sell as well as some my other books. The heirs of magic but they still sell well so I shouldn’t let that stop me somebody tweeted me and said that they were really surprised because these were their favorite books of mine and and this is one of the great truths.

03:06.63
jeffekennedy
Is that the book you’re thinking about writing the book that you’ve already written is somebody’s favorite book I have this one book that was an e-serial to begin with master of the opera modern retelling of phantom of the opera. That it was interesting I don’t think I ended up doing what I originally set out to do and yet I mean it’s a good book. But it’s I don’t know I think it was mispackaged. I I can’t even tell you but anyway almost nobody finds this book or and reads it I get a miniuscule amount I get like I don’t know in royalties I get something like $20 a quarter. But I know at least 1 person who that’s her favorite book of mine and one of her all-time favorite books and she rereads it regularly so and I only know this because she told me right? So just like all the people out there that you don’t know about who reread your book. Over and over and that’s their favorite book. So so that keeps me going on the one side. But then when I know that there are people out there who are just um, basically printing the same book over and over again and I know they do this because they tell me they do this. I think why am I laboring so hard. Why am I worrying so much about Lena and Ryan having the same conversation over and over. But that’s me that’s how I write. That’s what I do.

04:51.74
jeffekennedy
I’ve been rereading this old favorite series of mine and there are many things I still love about it and I know I’ve been Cagey about saying who it is um and there are reasons. Reasons for that but reasons which I shall not divulge. But I’ve been rereading it with an eye towards what makes it? Why do I love it and it’s very much like um, there was a certain strain of series like these for quite a while that did very very well. And some of the authors continue to do will and Wednesday they have is lots and lots of action. Lots of fighting and there’s this scene this is just where I get hung up I get hung up on. When you have like these incredibly powerful virtually immortal beings and they’re having a hard time fighting zombies because you know like your immortal beings have incredible speed incredible strength and the. Zombies can’t be killed but they can be chopped into pieces and they’re like well the pieces will keep coming in. It’s like yeah, but after a certain point the pieces can’t do much to you and so you know like these people who ah like can move in a blur of speed. They can fly they can like tear limbs off like paper that’s kind of strength they have but they’re like getting nawed to death by these zombies and okay the zombies are fast and I know that this is like a suspension of disbelief thing. But. For some reason and this is like my particular thing right? I can’t get past the disbelief. It’s like well how come if you’ve got all of these people who can move at super speed. Why don’t you just like. All of them go move it super speed through the zombies and just like rip them apart because like all you have to do is like go through and rip their legs off first so they can’t keep coming and then go back and chop them up into little pieces and who cares if they keep coming and coming and you could do that for a long time right.

07:28.61
jeffekennedy
This is why I don’t write zombie scenes I know I did kind of undid type creatures in uncharted realms in the final few books, the dare war and I did that entirely for assistant Karine who loves zombies. And they were not even real zombies. So I guess I didn’t do a great job with that either. Ah yeah, sometimes I wish that I could be a writer who thinks less about stuff and that sounds kind of arrogant and awful doesn’t it. But. Now I just get too caught up in wanting to in getting these meticulous details right? 1 of my new ideas and thank you all for saying that it’s perfectly cool that I have many new ideas I appreciate that one of the new ideas I’m toyed with. I’m hoping will be more action. Packed. It’s got an action packed premise. So maybe I can pull that off in that one. Although I did think that errors of magic would be more action packed and I just. Um, who knows who knows what my problem is I I like people having interesting conversations. Ah now. So um, we watched finally the. Final episode of Julia season one last night and it was very interesting to see how they structured that episode for those of you trying to figure out how to write a book that could be either standalone. Or a series right? We always say standalone with series potential is the that is the catch phrase if you’re out there trying to submit a book to traad publishing. Um, that’s how you say standalone book with series potential if you’re trying to figure out how to do that. Watch the 8 episodes of Julia and pay attention to what they did in that final episode because you could really see how they were structuring it to go either direction that either it would be a sweet wrap up. That’s all she wrote or. Extended to season 2 and so there’s from about you can see them laying the groundwork in the first half of the episode but then for the second half of the episode on you could see how all of the scenes could have gone either direction that either it’s gonna be.

10:17.81
jeffekennedy
Another season of Julia which it is hooray or not and I don’t I’m not a screenwriter I don’t know maybe they wrote them and didn’t film them but I wouldn’t be surprised if they hadn’t filmed both sets. Ah, films going each direction because all of the characters. It’s it’s a branch like and so they could either go this way or that way and and it was really well done. It’s fascinating how they tied it up and I enjoyed it very much a delightful delightful show. This is just going to be our adjective. Thank you Laura Darno and we also finished off winning time. The story of the liquors I thought that tied up nicely that one had a very obvious ending because it was the story of. That first season of the lakequor. So it ends with them spoiler alert winning the championship if it’s history. Can there be a spoiler. It’s like the people who go to see titanic and were upset that the boat saying if people died that was also spoiler. So yeah I thought um I liked how winning time ended up that one does not have such an obvious I haven’t looked to see if they’ve got a second season for that one but it doesn’t seem to be as clearly moving on to the next thing. But again that one had a much more natural here’s the story of how the l a wake Lakers went from being a shit team to winning the championship boom done your your plot structures there.

12:07.65
jeffekennedy
Yeah, so for this new series which I am mulling using my skalsy method. It has um, a very high paced premise.

12:26.64
jeffekennedy
I’m actually basing it off of a movie an old movie that is very fast paced and only it would be like a fantasy version of that. It’s such a great idea you guys. It’s such a cool idea but I will not be writing it just yet. Soon once I finish out storm princess on the Raven King and I have got let’s see I was going I hadn’t finished reporting in on that. So I have got almost 74000 words on this book. And as I mentioned the other day I might have screwed myself that instead of having 20000 words to go to finish this out because I was aiming for 95. It’s really looking like it’s gonna be more like 102 from where. Beats are falling out. Unfortunately yeah, so that means I’ve got almost 30000 words to go can she finish it. We shall see this book is gonna have four epilogues. So. For those of you who love this series. You could probably guess what I’m gonna do for epilogues I’m tempted to just go ahead and write to maybe I’ll go ahead and write those. Um, if I get stuck. But I think I can get this done I think I can. I should go through and look at my podcast episodes for like the 3 to 4 weeks before I release a book and I bet I say these same things over and over again I always get to that I think I can point how well. Learn what your process is a Nona right? That’s what we’re trying to do here I was thinking about something I wanted to tell you guys and I had a great segue to it as I was like. Getting ready this morning I was thinking about it and I was thinking oh and then that would be a really good segue into this other thing and now all I could think of is the other thing and not how I was going to segue to it from the writing stuff. And I’m probably not gonna be able to think about it. But I so I’ll just go straight to it. Ah no segue. No nice transition if we were editing. We would go back and add the transition but no transition for you.

15:05.15
jeffekennedy
I was thinking about the things we say to each other and how a lot of times people are very careless in how they talk to each other ah without meaning to it’s oh I know what? damn it. Now if we were doing postproduction I would go back and do this neat little segue. Oh well, here’s your transition because last week I was talking about my author friend who was upset that a reviewer had said that it was not her best effort because she’s like you could say anything about my book. But I always put in my best effort. Ah, she is also not a minimum viable product kind of gal and those people you could maybe safe. Not unless you want to say that they’re putting their best effort into creating a minimum viable product. So I was thinking about that some and thinking that probably the reviewer didn’t mean it necessarily the way it was received. Because it’s one of those catch phrases almost like a cliche phrase. That’s just um, you know it’s not easy to wrote viewbooks. It’s not easy to explain why you liked or did not like a story and sometimes it’s just because. That was not your favorite story but you you know that’s a short review right? So I think people sort of reach for and that’s what makes things cliches is their crutches. They’re these phrases that we sort of have. Laid into our brains like a tape recording that we trot out when it’s the easiest thing to grab and it’s 1 reason why people tend to be awkward in talking to each other about important things. Um, because sometimes words are inadequate. Sometimes it’s just hard to think of what to say hummingbird see if we can get her in there. Nope she’s. Took off again.

17:36.12
jeffekennedy
Or is she up there. She might be up there drinking a well ah you know so call, you’ve read that before in other places and you think oh well, you know it’s not her best effort and. That’s just in place of digging deep and coming up with more stuff to say that’s why cliches are bad in writing because they are these crutches to get us from place to place and they don’t most of the time don’t say anything meaningful. And so it’s in some ways I think it I mean it was upsetting to my friend but which I totally understand. But I think also the reviewer didn’t mean it how it sounded she meant it’s not my favorite effort in many ways and I think we. Say these things to each other not intending it to come across the way it does. We’re just hurrying through things and you know my husband was talking about this yesterday because he has parkinson’s disease and something that he says. Fairly regularly is yo. He’ll be upset by something that somebody says to him like oh well, you know we should do this thing. Let’s you know, but let’s work on this and do this thing and and he’ll say it’s like they don’t understand that I’m sick and how can people not understand that I’m sick. And I can’t do these things and and and it’s hard for me to to find the words to be comforting to him but that was what I was saying I said you know I think that you know like this most recent person who said something to him. About doing something that David just simply doesn’t feel like it can do you know I said he wasn’t thinking about it. He was thinking about all the other stuff that he has to go get done and that was just one of those tape recorded phrases. This is something I learned a long time ago with like high school reunions. Um, the first few like the 5 year and the 10 year my friends would all say the exact same thing they would say oh this has been so great. We should get together more often and they would all exchange contact information and say let’s get together more often. And they did this at like the 5 10 n and the 15 year reunion and finally I started to clue into the fact because nobody ever got in touch with anybody that this was just a way of saying goodbye of being you know, expressing affection and so forth, but it they were empty words.

20:25.19
jeffekennedy
And I think we use empty words with each other a lot and it’s it’s easy to do particularly if you’re conducting an internal monologue. You know like if you’re thinking about your work project or your book that you’re trying to finish or you know worrying about. Something else that you don’t always monitor the words that come out of your mouth and when that happens those tape recording parts of our brains. You know, just sort of insert comforting phrase here and we’re like oh yeah, we should get together sometime not meaning it at all and on that note. You know you guys. We should totally get together sometime and I will talk to you all on Thursday bye bye.

First Cup of Coffee – May 9, 2022




Transcript
00:01.38
jeffekennedy
Good morning, everyone! This is Jeffe Kennedy author of fantasy romance and romantic fantasy I’m here with my first cup of coffee.

00:15.63
jeffekennedy
Today’s Monday may ninth and death sorry for the incredibly awkward intro I’m so in a slightly different position and I realized I couldn’t quite crane back to reach the chimes. Alas. If you’re on video you might be able to see behind me this light might not be great. But I have my clematis is blooming beautiful pink blossoms. Yay.

00:45.73
jeffekennedy
Yeah, so everything’s bright and shiny here a little bit cool breeze blowing this morning but um, getting the cool in supposed to warm up later today wind again today. Alas, the wind. Um, hummingbird battle little Hummer um I don’t remember what I was going to say the hummingbird distracted me what’s something to say it. What was it. Who knows it’s gone thinks bird.

01:26.79
jeffekennedy
But so yeah, like all thoughts have fled my head I’m trying to think of what’s going on here wendy oh I know what it was I’ll share it on the show notes I posted it to social media before but I think social media hates me have you guys been noticing this. Like I post stuff to Facebook and Twitter like even pictures and original content with no links all the things I’m supposed to do and like I get likes but nobody’s commenting maybe nobody has bandwidth to comment. Maybe we’re all just so fricking fed up with everything that’s going on. Um. Like trying to relying on law from the seventeen hundreds to inact current law I haven’t ranted about that on here I feel like we’ve all heard enough elsewhere anyway. It was the um fire incident report from the fire that’s up near Las Vegas New Mexico about an hour north of here I was looking at it just to see because they they may have to add back to weight the city of Las Vegas New Mexico not Las Vegas Nevada but still the fires coming real close and they’re. Having to evacuate people from the surrounding towns. So in a way. It’s not funny. So it’s one of these funny, not funny things but I was looking at the report and it said that the drought exasperated by the high winds and warm temperatures I think that maybe not everybody who saw it got why I thought it was so funny because it should be exacerbated. Not exasperated. Um and I thought was really funny. Who knew a drought could become as exasperated as we feel so um, yeah I don’t know take humor where you can a lot of people have had to evacuate. It’s really not wonderful. Alas. Um I had a good weekend felt like a busy weekend I I had 3 SFWA meetings on Saturday publications team nebula planning board meeting. So ah. That sort of took up the middle of my day before that I just hung out though and read.

04:03.73
jeffekennedy
Um, I’ve been debating about whether or not to talk about what I’m reading because I am oh see even if I hint about it. You guys will guess. And I just don’t know if I want to say anything on here I know that’s coy if I shouldn’t bring it up at all I’m gonna set that aside and think about if you’re on video you might see my cool new barette this is exciting stuff right? Look it’s like a a phoenix or a heron. Got in at a local story here in Santa Fe so um I don’t often buy myself little treats like that and that was a nice nice little gifty for myself. It’s important to reward ourselves I don’t know if I’ve talked about that in a long time when you’re. Especially when you’re working your creative self very hard and wanting to um you know make the money to buy like groceries um paid mortgage and rent or all of those sorts of things I had a um, a. Ah, decent, wake up call yesterday I was um, insensitive to some newer writers in a way that I really tried not to be and it didn’t occur to me but 1 of the girls was saying that she hadn’t been able to find any good writer conferences in Florida and I said well what about NINC? Novelist incorporated which has their conference in St Petersburg and she was like what that’s 20 minutes away from me and she ran off to get it and then she set back a picture of her face when she read the membership qualifications for NINC because ah. Desert Ravens are busy this morning too. Ah because you have to be a member of NINC to register for the conference and and I’m a member and it was it was like a no big deal for me to become a member. But the membership qualifications are steep. She’s like I just published my first book I have nothing yet and it’s um, they they are they are steep There’re lots steepers than so than SFWA’s. But NINC was formed by kind of a spinoff group from rwa that felt like there were too many um wannabes in the organization and so they made it steep because they wanted it to be.

06:43.32
jeffekennedy
Like writers who were more advanced in their career and so I did say to these cows I said you know it took me a long time to to and I forget I do forget how much water is under the bridge for me. You know, maybe that’s part of the champagne problems. You know you get to a point where you you’re focused on what you’re you know eyes forward what you’re trying to achieve next what you’re trying to do and you don’t always or at least I don’t. Always take that moment to look back at how very far I’ve come and and I think it that’s ah it’s a good reminder for me, you know that those um those membership qualifications were easy for me to make they’re not easy for everybody. Especially when you’re first starting out but it it that reminds me of a conversation that we’ve been having at SFWA and and I feel like it’s okay for me to talk about this because I’ve been talking about it openly with a bunch of people but there is um in. I can’t maybe I’ve even talked about it on the podcast before forgive me forgive me if I’ve forgotten. Um I should say I did spend a couple of hours revising on the book yesterday I’m getting a little bit worried about finishing it on time. This is probably also right on schedule and. Yeah, so my brain is really focused on the book which is like really great that I’m like trying to finish this book at the same time that nebula conference is ah coming to a peak but everybody else is doing way more work than me at this point so that’s pretty awesome.

08:34.89
jeffekennedy
So yeah, there’s an interesting thing in the science fiction and fantasy community where they talk about um, being a professional writer which is very important. That’s part of our mission I’m totally behind that and then they talk about stuff being fan based. And it’s interesting to me that the science fiction and fantasy community. Really they talk about fan run conventions fan awards the romance community doesn’t talk about fans in the same way even though like the Rt convention was all about readers. And there are other conventions that are reader conventions but we don’t say fan in and the same way that science fiction and fantasy community does and there is occasionally someone will say things. In Sifwa like we want this to be a professional panel. Not something that seems more fan based and and 1 of the frequent. Um. Disparaging remarks made about Rw a that confused me for a long time was they would say well Rw a allows fans to be members. They don’t it’s not a professional organization like Siffa is because they allow fans in and I was like everybody in our w a is I mean you. You want to be a writer That’s why you join.

10:14.14
jeffekennedy
So this finally struck me the other day. It was like you know when you enter a community and you um, don’t always know the jargon and 1 thing about sifway is that it’s an old enough organization that there is arcane lingo. And there is a lot of stuff that are like unwritten rules and ever since I’ve been on the board I’ve I’ve been the force for no unwritten rules and there are other people who are fortunately on my same team with this but it’s like um if it frankly in in my world. If a rule is not written down It’s not a rule. You can’t expect people to abide by unwritten rules if it’s such a god damn fucking important rule write it down. You can see why everybody loves me. Um.

11:11.20
jeffekennedy
So we’ve we’ve run into this before where we’ve had like people violate unwritten rules and then everybody’s like oh censure them. They’re bad and wrong because they broke this this rule I’m like how were they supposed to know it was a rule and they’re like well everybody knows. I don’t know. It’s like this insular community thing part of the things we’re working to change and it has changed a whole lot just in in my type. Um, but so this like suddenly the lingo was illuminated for me an epiphany. Now I understand scrambled eggs! If you don’t get that joke you haven’t been listening to this podcast long enough. Ah, um, if you want me to you can ping me and I’ll explain it. But. It yeah I will explain in here. Um, but I was testing my theory out with someone else. I said you know this has occurred to me that when people say in SFWA say that something is fan-based as opposed to professional they’re referring to aspiring writers. As opposed to established writers and and she looked at me and she’s like well yes why god so that’s why when they were like hurling this accusation at RWA a allowing fans in what they mean is that they rwa has no bar for membership. And if you’re an aspiring writer with no cred whatsoever. You can join so somehow I don’t know it would be wouldn’t you sociologists out there I would love for you to retrace this history of how this became a thing of calling. People who want to become writers fans I mean in some ways I could see the trajectory right? because all writers start out as enthusiastic readers right. So okay, I’m gonna touch on this thing that I’m reading. Ah I don’t I don’t want to annoy certain people is my hesitation here. Um, somebody yesterday when I we were talking about something else entirely. But when I was chatting with some of these girls.

13:41.81
jeffekennedy
To answer entertain me that they always make me happy and they um, we’re talking about something I’m not even gonna I’m gonna dance around it as much as possible tippay tap. And I said um yeah, and I said I try to keep my mouth shut about that and this other girl said um well that she had she had gotten in trouble with with somebody for saying something and you know and she said that she was you know afraid for her career that they could really hurt her career. And I said well I’m not afraid but I do try to keep my mouth shut on some things because I am aware you know and they said well if we you know unless people like you tell us, then? how are we supposed to know and I’m like yeah I know I try to walk this line but sometimes I just. Give my opinion and say yeah I don’t think that you need to be involved with that. Ah, and then I do my little zipper face. Um I am aware that my babblings here are anywhere that in so that I am. Even though I say opinions my own that I do also representative what to some extent and I don’t want anybody to think that. My opinions are Sifwa’s opinions and so I I try to be careful. Also I’m careful about what I say on record and I said that to these scos and it’s hard because it’s been pandemic but you know I said you know it’s a standing thing. Buy me a drink you even wouldn’t have to buy me a drink because odds are I’d already have one at the bar. Um, and I will tell you in person anything you want to know it’s just I don’t want stuff in print where somebody can come back and say you know did you slam this person. You know? because even though I’d say well I think they deserve it. Um, some things are with it. Some things aren’t so so anyway I’m doing a reread of a series that I read first. It’s it’s pretty extraordinary. Really this was one of the first books I ever bought on my brand new kindle back in the day and I’m not going to give a year so you guys can’t sleuth out what I’m reading but um because I know how y’all are, but and I loved this book.

16:28.70
jeffekennedy
Love this book and I love this series until I felt like the series kind of went off the rails so that could be any number of series right? Um, but yeah I I remember I got that Kindle for Christmas from my mother. They were very expensive then. And thank you mom and I bought 3 books and this was one of them. You know, bought them on my kindle you guys it was like ah the angels were singing. It was the best thing and 1 of the best things was is that at the end of this book I had to read the next book and I could read it immediately and all your kids out there who don’t know what it was like when we didn’t have remote controls. Um, there were so many times when you. Had to wait so long to get the next book in the series and and not because it wasn’t out because you couldn’t find it anywhere. Um, you know doing things like in our library alone. There was no online ordering of any sort dinosaurs roamed the earth you had to watch out so that you didn’t get. Eaten by the tyrannosaurus rex on the way to the newsstand you know you could ask your local bookstore to order it but sometimes they couldn’t get it sometimes they wouldn’t get it if it was romance sometimes they would be like yeah um, so. So it was a miraculous thing. Ah and I’m sure younger people get really sick of older people waxing on about the amaze mean amazing things about technology. But I think I’ve told you guys this that i. Said to my grandson he was doing something on his phone and I said you know there was a time when we only used those to make phone calls and he goes ah I know everybody tells me that was like you okay, fine kid that’s but it’s true. Ah. But yeah, being able to buy that second book was yeah angels wept so now I’m rereading the series and it’s just interesting to read it with my lens now because when I first read that I was not writing fiction or I was just. Beginning to dabble in fiction. And yeah, it’s it’s interesting to reread it? Um, yeah, and that’s all I’m going to say at this point I’m not Goingnna talk about what my trigger was to start reading this or other thoughts. Maybe I will later.

19:10.80
jeffekennedy
And no know um did I have a point in bringing that up now who knows who knows Jeffe do you have a point about anything question and well so let’s see god so this week’s going to be intense working on this book. Getting it done. Um, the revision going fine. That’s weird. Ah this is a weird book doesn’t do I say this every single time don’t I um, but yeah, this is a different kind of book. I don’t even know what more to say about it than that I mean the revision is going fine but I keep worrying that I don’t even know what I’m worried about on it. It’s just um. Not following the trajectory that I expected I ah somebody asked if my last week I made the reference to the Groundhog day loop no I’m not doing that with lean on right I had I almost wish I had it’s too late now. Because that would have been an entertaining thing to do but no, it’s more that they they’re making incremental progress but it is you know how when you’re trying to figure out a relationship like that. You know you just do a lot of retreading and falling back into bad habits. So anyway, it’s moving forward I’m I’m making progress on this revision I think I have something like a hundred pages still to revise and then. Maybe be longer. That’s this is my concern is it’s looking like instead of being the 95000 words I wanted right now the beats are looking more like 102K fuck me. So yeah I could always push the date out I could. You know, extend the release date by a week but I really want this release in may get that money in may um, maybe that’s not as that important we shall’ll see so anyway I’m gonna go get to work instead of babbling on about it. Hope you guys are ready to kick off your Monday have a good week and I’ll talk to you all tomorrow take care bye bye.