“A Law of Constants” hits the shelves, EXCLUSIVELY at Amazon.Com on February 23rd and I am so excited! Bringing this book to you has been such a journey, and now that it’s all over but the crying, I wanted to take a second and really share that journey with you. I want “A Law of Constants” to be as much of an emotional connection for you as it was for me.
For this week’s blog, we’re going to take an introspective look at the roads taken to get “A Law of Constants” from a blank page to release day.
It started with “Days of the Phoenix.” When I released “Broken Promise Records,” I did a lot of things wrong. That’s who I am as a person though. I’d rather dig in and learn along the way than research the right way to do things. Yes, I am the child who had to put his hand on the stove even though Mom told me the stove was hot. Shortly after BPR, which dropped in November 2017, I heard about National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) being in progress and I wanted to do it the next year. In January of 2018, I wanted to know if I could do it before I announced I was going to try. The novel I wrote ended up being “Days of the Phoenix.”
Stephen King said that he thinks a writer’s notebook is a great way to immortalize a bad idea and the stories worth telling are the ones that you stick in your head (paraphrasing). A lot of the story’s matter stemmed from being introduced to the concept that some people really believed in time travel, after hearing about John Titor’s story, but the seedling for the plot stemmed from a dream I had.
In my dream, a friend and I were visiting a shack in the middle of nowhere because we had to talk to a guy. When we get to the front door, his caretaker greeted us and just gave us some really odd vibes, but we got into the house and I went to talk to the man. He’s trying to tell me something in code, I can’t make out what he’s saying, but I know it’s important. Out of nowhere, I hear gunshots. I run out to where my buddy and the caretaker were talking and my buddy had gunned her down. He looks me right in the eye and says “she was in on the whole thing.” I wake up, confused as all get out. The writer in me couldn’t stop obsessing about what the man was trying to tell me, or what the caretaker had been in on. That one dream was the catalyst for what would become the plot to “A Law of Constants.”
NaNoWriMo 2018. As a year, 2018 sucked more than a Dyson Vacuum testing lab. Mom had passed away, I was a mess, there were ice storms in North Carolina that caused havoc, Hurricane Florence rocked us like …well, a hurricane. I needed to hold onto something to look forward to. For all of October 2018, I had planned to write a sequel to “Days of the Phoenix” called “Simon, the Anarchist” (which I still may). On November 1st, having done all my preparations to write a “Days of the Phoenix sequel, I decided I’m going to finally write that story about the man and his caretaker. Good thing I’m a pantser (a writer who writes from the seat of their pants) because I would have been royally screwed otherwise. I spent the 30 days in November crafting the first draft of ALOC and it was the creative imbuing of energies I needed in an exhausting year (that would be the first in a succession of exhausting years).
The editing process is boring. I have severe Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), which makes the process even more laborious. I remember doing creative writing in elementary school and saying “fuck it” to writing more than one draft. The Universe demands balance, so for every draft I didn’t write then, I sure as hell am writing them now. When you have ADHD, and find joy in flipping the script subconsciously like I do, you find peace in editing by completely making changes to fundamental parts of the story. In the first draft of ALOC, Derek Foster’s partner was a woman named Alicia Melendez. During the editing process, I asked myself “…didn’t I do a latina woman in another book?” I wanted all of my books to be interconnected, so I dusted off Raquel Ortiz from “Days of the Phoenix” and capitalized on the opportunity to develop her personality.
My beta readers were absolutely amazing and really helped me shape the story into one I would have been very excited to read. After several rounds of edits, I finally had a story I’d be proud of. That’s when life kicked me square in the teeth.
I’m not going to go into the details of my marriage falling apart, but it’s easy to say the project took a back burner. After picking myself up, dusting myself off, I was ready to proceed on the best foot forward. It was time to release “A Law of Constants,” and that brings us to today.
When you pick up the book, I want you to know that you are holding the fruits of years of trials, tribulations, and personal successes. It might be because I’m too dense to know when it’s time to stay down, but it’s in my bones to keep getting up. My brother told me a time when our father told him “No matter how much it hurts, keep getting back up. No one’s going to mess with you when they think you’re nuts.” That book is the proof that I may have a screw or two loose.
Thank you, for reading, for understanding, and for relating. Releasing a book is a big deal to a writer, especially an independent author. We’re putting ourselves out there with a product that is very near and dear to our hearts, and that is a very vulnerable feeling.
I hope you enjoy “A Law of Constants,” available February 23rd, EXCLUSIVELY at Amazon.com! Until your next trip across the Millerverse!