With unemployment being at 4.3% (last numbers), I wonder where these protesters get the time to hassle each other?

This is the weekend before Labor Day, the traditional time for one last manic blast before we dive into school, 2-3/4 months before the next holiday, and a few days of what we used to call hot Indian Summer (probably not PC now). Store shelves are stocked with hamburgers & hotdogs, buns, chips, soda, and mountains of charcoal briquettes. And, of course, that great paradox of shopping: tables of flannel shirts and jackets when you’re looking for a new bathing suit to replace the one you wore out this summer. Good luck with that.

People are packing up coolers, pickups, campers, and SUVs for trips to the lake, mountains, the solar eclipse, and…

Wait a minute! I just saw the news. Everyone seems to be heading to cities to protest other protesters. Now I may be wrong, but these folks don’t look like they’re planning a barbecue–unless it’s to roast each other. I’m reading these news stories, and there are so many groups involved, protesting each other, I can’t keep up. Some groups that purportedly hate each other are aligning to hate others they hate even more.

With unemployment so low, don’t these people have jobs? Shouldn’t they be doing something to build positive experiences with family? Maybe invite a lonely neighbor to that barbecue?

Ahh, but no. They would rather sweat on hot pavement, throw things at police, and shout inane chants that begin with “Hey, hey, ho, ho…” <fill in your own pet group you hate here>.

And, as a writer, this brings me to my point. I’m glad I write fiction. Sure I have bad guys–and now I have even more examples to choose from just by watching five minutes of news–but I also fill my stories with good people who have values and who care for each other.

Personally, I like reading books where good overcomes evil. I guess I’d better get back to writing stories like that, because there seems to be a lot of evil to overcome.

As I sat with a fellow writer awhile back, he recounted to me a conversation he had with a traditional publishing house acquisitions editor. My friend was submitting a nonfiction book proposal, and the editor made a point of instructing him to include his platform.

When my friend asked if his proposal would be considered if he didn’t include platform information, the answer was no. The quality of his writing was not in question; his platform was.

At that point, I turned to my friend and asked, “Is the quality of your writing any less good if you don’t have a platform?” The answer is no. It may simply mean he isn’t good at building a platform. The book may be incredible, life-changing, earth-altering. But if he doesn’t have a platform…oh, well.

And that is exactly the argument for self-publishing. One size doesn’t fit all.

Here is the truth: Traditional Publishing is a business. They must ask, Is this book good for our business? If it isn’t, they will go out of business and there will be no more books from that company. But that model Doesn’t work for all authors.

The self-/indie author asks a different question: Is this a good book? And, just like the traditional company, they must ask this—otherwise, they are in danger of putting out junk.

Two different questions; two different paths to publishing.

Rich Bullock
www.perilousfiction.com

Shooting the Glock 38mm. Oops.

Posted: 1st March 2017 by Rich Bullock in Craft
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Not getting it right.

I began reading a new novel last night. It sounded promising—woman on the run; rugged hero living in the wild—and it started with high action. Then, almost immediately, I was tripped up by an error. The man had a “38-millimeter Glock tucked into the waist” of his pants. Sounds rugged, manly, dangerous. Right?
 
Except there is no such weapon. No Glock models fire a 38-millimeter cartridge. Never have. There are 9mm, 10mm, .380s, .40s. Even a .357. (There IS a Glock model 38, but it fires a .45 caliber cartridge).
Later on in the book, the author says “he put the safety back on the Glock.” No again. Glocks don’t have an external safety level or button. Many pistols do, but not Glocks. It’s one of their prime selling features for being ready to fire without having to remember a manual safety.
 
Anyone who owns any Glock model knows this. The first person behind a gun store counter could advise on this. So could any number of people in law enforcement.
 
I’ll be quick to say it’s near impossible to put out a perfect book–I’ve had a fair number of readers offer corrections for my goofs (relatively minor, though still embarrassing), and I appreciate those willing to contact me. It makes me want to do better, to ask questions, to research deeper, to familiarize myself with the topics I write about.
So authors: Don’t skimp on getting these things correct.

Over 35,000 Copies Downloaded Worldwide!

Posted: 5th May 2016 by Rich Bullock in Books, Marketing

Well, I finally got around to totaling up four years of reports from Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). Some surprising facts emerged:

  1. Over 35,000 copies of Perilous Cove have been downloaded through March 2016! (Original ebook publishing date was May 28, 2012).
  2. Readers in 11 countries have downloaded the book.
  3. Over 100 reviews on Amazon.

I set the price of Perilous Cove to permanently FREE last year in March. Yep, giving it away. But I had a marketing strategy I hoped would work. And it did!

The sales of Storm Song and Desperation Falls increased about 2-4 books each per month to 50-70 each per month!

For me, the most amazing aspect of all this is that readers all over the world are hearing the stories of my characters’ lives. Writers love their characters, and I’m no exception.

My latest book, Shattered Glass, tells the story of Lilly Hawthorne. Orphaned at twelve years old, she lucks out when she’s adopted by THE Hollywood power couple. But good luck never lasts, and Lilly is forced to fight for her life and the lives of those she loves.

Get it now on all ebook platforms and in print.

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Shattered Glass

Posted: 9th March 2016 by Rich Bullock in Books

Shattered Glass – Glass & Stone Series, Book 1

Someone wants her dead. Another wants to save her. She wants her life back.

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Now Available!

Available on Amazon KindleSmashwordsBarnes & Noble, Kobo, and other sites. Also now in Print.

Shattered Glass is Now Available!

Posted: 22nd February 2016 by Rich Bullock in Books

My 4th suspense novel (this one is more a thriller) is now available on Amazon and Smashwords, and will soon be on Barnes & Noble, iBooks, and other sites. A print version is underway.

Lilly Hawthorne’s adoption five years ago is a rags-to-riches dream come true, complete with movie star mother and mega-producer father. But shortly before her eighteenth birthday, Lilly’s fairytale is destroyed when brutal attacks nearly kill her and threaten everything and everyone she holds dear. 

Regardless of promises, Lilly quickly learns no one can truly protect her or her new family. She seeks expert training from a mysterious and deadly Russian woman, and prepares for what she fears will be a battle of life and death. 

FBI Special Agent Kaden Hunt saved Lilly once, and he can’t forget his instant attraction to the young woman. Now on the trail of a cross-country serial killer, Kade and his team are closing in. But the closer they get, the more he fears the sadistic killer is targeting the one person for whom Kade will risk everything.

The longer I worked on this story (and it was an embarrassingly long time!), the more I fell in love with Lilly and the way she attacks life. Nothing about her eighteen years has been easy, but that’s what turns her into a kick-butt young woman. I’m excited for you to read her story!

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Perilous Cove is now FREE!

Posted: 9th May 2015 by Rich Bullock in Books

Perilous Cove – Perilous Safety Series, Book 1, is now free!

My suspense novel, PERILOUS COVE, is FREE on Kindle, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, iBooks, and more. Please pass the word!
What if your husband tried to kill you…after he was already dead?
A first-rate thriller that grabs you in Chapter One and doesn’t let go.” 
– James Scott Bell, author

Rich Bullock knows how to spin edge-of-your-seat suspense that lingers long after the story ends. With more novels on the horizon, he is an author to watch.”
– Cathy Elliott, author of Medals in the Attic: An Annie’s Attic Mystery
Perilous Cove Novel ebook cover

New Interview on Writers & Authors on Fire

Posted: 24th March 2015 by Rich Bullock in Craft

Interview with John Vonhof

I recently spoke with John Vonhof, a long-time writing acquaintance, and he asked me a few questions about my writing and my path to publication. You can read the interview here at the Writers & Authors on Fire website: http://www.writersauthorsonfire.com/007-rich-bullock

A Podcast of the interview will be available on iTunes soon.

A Nostalgic Epiphany – Missing Books

Posted: 20th March 2014 by Rich Bullock in Books

Nostalgia 101

I miss buying books.

 

Buying Books

Oh, I still buy books. These days, I prefer reading e-books, so about 99% are digital. In fact, I have a very difficult time finishing a printed book. It gets left beside my bed or someplace else where I don’t think about it. The best books are those I have with me all the time on my e-reader of choice: my iPhone.

However, I went into a Barnes & Noble last week and stopped right inside where the tables of new releases are set up. Stacks of new mysteries, suspense, and thrillers beckoned. A table of young adult reads screamed Buy me! And I experienced a sudden nostalgia for my youth when I would enter a bookstore every couple of months searching for any new releases by my favorite authors. I devoured books, and the wait for the next story was interminable, building a deep longing until I found a new Ray Bradbury, Harlan Ellison, Robert A. Heinlein, or Edgar Rice Burroughs. Or in my middle-grade days, a new Tom Swift Jr. or Mr. Bass book.

What I miss is that anticipation. The wait. The hunt. The success!

And the anticipation didn’t end with the buy. It built all the way home, until I could finally find a quiet place, open my newest possession, and fall into a new and utterly fascinating world. Television couldn’t compete with the images these authors painted with words.

It’s just not the same with online buying, whether print or digital. Getting a new book in 60 seconds is great, but it comes with a price—a loss.

I stood in front of that table at Barnes & Noble, thumbing the gleaming covers, taking in the stimulating smell of ink, paper, and imagination, and felt the loss that it isn’t like it used to be.

Chiquitita

Love to hear your thoughts on the changing world of buying books and reading.

Photo Credits: Cindi via CompfightHistorias Visuales via Compfight

Free on Kindle – Perilous Cove

Posted: 7th February 2014 by Rich Bullock in Marketing

Perilous Cove Free on Kindle, Feb 8, 9, 10!

Perilous Cove will be available as a free download for Kindle reading devices and apps Saturday through Monday on Amazon. Please tell your friends! The goal is to have as many downloads as possible so the book’s ranking increases in the Amazon search pages.

Perilous Cove Novel ebook cover