short story

Fourth and Goal

No, I don’t watch football. Well, not anymore. I used to, but the last time I watched football really was… well, yesterday, to be honest. But it was the Funday Football on Disney+, where they did real time animation of the football game from London (it was hilariously glitchy.) No, In this case, fourth and goal doesn’t mean how far you have to go in football. It’s how far we have to go in 2023. October 1st marks the beginning of the fourth quarter. I’ve done my fourth quarter planning and my goals are up on my kanban board. It’s time to look toward bringing this year to a close.

Kanban, research shelf and Ink.

My immediate goals? Finish Balance of Power. Keep working on The Sea Prince. Edits on Morrigan’s Heir will be in some time this month, so I’ll be turning those around to get the book out by the end of 2023. And then I have to revise Morrigan’s Wrath to get that in to the editor. The anniversary edition of House of Sable Locks will be coming out soon (how soon? I don’t know!) and there are things to be done for that. There’s research that I really should get back to doing, although that’s lower priority to closing out the year and revisiting my business plan for 2024. I’m also considering pulling some of my short stories and getting them up for sale, but that may be a 2024 goal and not a 2023 goal.

Balance of Power
Heir to the Firstborn, Book 7

30416 / 90000 (33.80%)

The Sea Prince
The Coral Throne, Book 1

62124 / 120000 (51.77%)

Work on The Sea Prince has slowed down a little, and will slow down even more once the edits come in. Co-writing is much more of a juggling act than writing a book solo, because my interruptions rarely coincide with Danielle’s interruptions, which means that one of us is usually waiting on the other to look over things. We’ll eventually get the hang of this and get this book done.

The SPFBO judges have to announce their finalists by October 31st. This means that, at some point this month, I will find out if Written in Water will continue on in the contest. I’m surprisingly okay with either option. There are so many amazing books that have been cut already so if I am cut, I’ll be in fantastic company.

Keep an eye out for a special blog post/newsletter post in the next week or so — I’ll be able to show you the beautiful new cover of House of Sable Locks!

Promotions!

A new Cavalcade of Authors promo is coming this month, from October 13th through the 15th. Again, 200 books or more free for download. For this one, I’ve put Forged in Fire into the pot.

There’s also a single day event on October 27th, hosted by Stephanie Freeman. You can find more information on that and sign up here. For that event, you can grab free copies of The Chronicles of John Zebedee!

Posted by EASchechter in 2023 plans, 2024 plans, accountability, Balance of Power, contest, cover art, edits, forthcoming works, Heir to the Firstborn, John Zebedee, planner stuff, Planning, promotions, publishing, Revisions, Sable Locks, short story, The Sea Prince, The White Raven, upcoming books, upcoming work, Updatey things, why-the-writing-is-slow, WIP, wordcount, Written in Water, 0 comments

Another new short

Took me a bit to get this one up and ready for sale, but I’ve added another short story to KU.

Student-Artificer Elijah Saloman discovers what he thinks could be a lost masterwork of the greatest Artificer ever born. He is determined to make it work, even though he has no idea what it is or what it is supposed to do. But when everything that can go wrong does, Elijah finds himself caught in an interesting predicament—trapped within the machine, and at the mercy of the whimsical plaything of a long-dead Artificer with a taste for the exotic.

***

Infernal Machine is interesting. It’s set in the same universe as House of Sable Locks, and involves Student-Artificers who are friends of Dieter, and in the same year of study.  Dieter’s not in this story, but Elijah is mentioned briefly in the sequel to House of Sable Locks (Bonds of Blood and Steel, currently under consideration at Circlet).

Elijah and Sasha may get their own book, eventually. But it will involve heavy research into the Russian Revolution, so not any time soon.

Posted by EASchechter in Blood and Steel, research is fun, Sable Locks, short story, Ta-da, 0 comments

Fly, My Pretties!!!

Today, I have something happening that I rarely do — I actually don’t think this has ever happened to me before.

I have four book releases today!

One of these is an anthology appearance, my first with Riverdale Avenue Press. Under The Cape is a sexy superhero anthology edited by Rachel Kenley, and it was fun to work on.

My story in this anthology is Time for No Mercy, and yes, that’s a Doctor Horrible reference.

The other three all re-releases of short stories. I’m starting them out in Kindle Unlimited, to see how they do. So in 90 days, they might go wide. Or they might not. It’s an experiment.

First up — my erotic retelling of an already erotic poem.

To Market.

Do not go to the Goblin Market. Do not try their wares.

 

Second release was inspired by Tom Smith and his song Kidnapped by Pirates is Good.

Her Captive

What do you do with a kidnapped sailor…?

 

And finally, my action romp through an ancient temple.

Fools Rush In.

When someone tells you that something cannot be done, proving them wrong might just be interesting.

 

(I’m really very pleased with how that cover came out.)

EEEE!!!! New books!!!!

Posted by EASchechter in happy-happy- joy- joy, kvelling, new books, publishing, Release date, short story, SQUEEE, Ta-da, Under the Cape, yippee, 0 comments

Short story: Myths and Secrets

This popped into my head this morning and wouldn’t get out. If you’ve read my work before, you’ll recognize Daniel and Itami (from Layover, and from their AU versions in Blood, Lust in No Safewords, 2). They’ll have their own book, once I’m done with Swords of Charlemagne.

***

There was traffic on the George Washington Bridge. It wasn’t a surprise, and Daniel had planned for it. They would still make their meeting in Fort Lee in plenty of time. But for now, they were at a dead stop in the middle of the span. He drummed his fingers on the steering wheel, glanced out the window at the river below them, sparkling in the sunlight, then looked the other way at the man sitting in the passenger seat. He knew that Hiro Itami’s eyes were closed behind his sunglasses – it was daylight, and the bright light hurt his eyes even through glasses so dark that Daniel could barely see through them. But that had nothing to do with his being a vampire and everything to do with his being an albino. The whole ‘vampires can’t bear the light of the sun’ myth that Daniel had grown up hearing was, in fact, nonsense. So, apparently, was the inability to cross running water. Daniel looked down at the Hudson River again; polluted or not, it was definitely running water. Which led to the question…

Tono?”

“Yes?”

“May I ask a question?”

“You did just,” Itami answered. “What is it, koibito?”

Daniel grinned. “Well, there are a bunch of stories about vampires, about how to keep them from biting you–”

“You wish me to not bite you?” Itami interrupted. “It’s a bit late for that, my slave.”

Daniel laughed. “No! No, I like you biting me just fine. I just wanted to know how many of the stories are fake. I never had anyone I could ask before.”

“Ah,” Itami murmured. “Intellectual curiosity. All right. Ask. It will pass the time.”

The traffic inched forward a bit, then stopped again. Daniel waited until they were stopped again before speaking. “Religious symbols? Specifically, a crucifix.”

“Have I introduced you to Rabbi Isaac ben Miriam?” Itami asked in response. Daniel glanced at him.

“He’s the Viceroy’s lieutenant in Brooklyn, I think?” he asked, trying to remember the local hierarchy. When Itami nodded, Daniel relaxed. “I think so. I think you introduced me to him at the last meeting. Why… oh. Oh, I see. A crucifix isn’t a religious symbol with any meaning to anyone who isn’t Christian.” He grinned. “You’d need to be wearing a whole occult jewelry shop if that one was true.”

Itami chuckled. “Very good. What else have you heard?”

“Well, I know that sunlight won’t kill vampires. You don’t like it, but that’s different,” Daniel said. “And crossing running water isn’t an issue–”

“I could wish it was. Then we would not have to sit in traffic and pay ridiculous tolls,” Itami said.

“Ah… you can’t enter a place without invitation?” Daniel asked.

“Since when are manners only the purview of vampires?” Itami countered. “That one is ridiculous. Go on. What else?”

The traffic started moving again as whatever clog righted itself, and Daniel turned his focus to driving. He’d learned to drive as part of his duties as Itami’s blood slave, but it had only been a few months, and he was still getting used to driving into New Jersey for meetings, and to the handling on Itami’s little sportscar. Learning to drive on a Kia hadn’t really prepared him for driving a Jaguar. So he didn’t ask the next question until he’d pulled into the parking space in the garage underneath the office building where Itami would be meeting his colleagues. Daniel cut the engine, looked at Itami, and asked, “What about garlic?”

Itami turned toward him and took off his sunglasses. He smiled, and Daniel could just make out the barely protruding fangs in the dim, garage lighting. He knew he’d see more of them later tonight, when it was time for Itami to feed. The thought made him shiver with anticipation.

“Garlic,” Itami murmured. “That one… is true, and not true.”

Daniel frowned. “How so?”

“Well, the truth is that it was a rumor started by my kind. No matter what you humans believe, garlic doesn’t repel vampires at all.”

“Then why start the rumor?” Daniel asked. Itami laughed.

“Because do you know how disappointing it is to be presented with a gourmet feast, and have it be under-seasoned?”

Daniel burst out laughing. “Is that why there’s always pizza for the slaves at these meetings?”

Itami smiled. He opened the car door and got out, and Daniel scrambled to follow him. They walked toward the elevators, with Daniel a measured two steps behind Itami. They got into the elevator, and Daniel punched the button for their floor while Itami put his sunglasses back on.

“Daniel?” Itami murmured as the doors slid closed.

“Yes, Tono?”

“Have the garlic knots.”

Posted by EASchechter in BDSM Vampires, inspiration-strikes-OW, plot bunnies, short story, silly, 0 comments

Work in Progress: The White Raven, week 10

And… I’m officially behind.  Another off week, and I’m now just about a thousand words behind where I should be at this stage. I’ll be working on making that up this coming week.

The White Raven
Week Ten Total Wordcount

Things I learned this week? Fight scenes take longer for me to write than sex scenes, but it’s for the same reason — blocking. Figuring out what’s happening where, and who is doing what to whom, takes time. Here’s hoping that once I get through this fight scene that things speed up.

Instead of an excerpt this week, have a short story — my only Christmas story to date: Snowbound.  If you like it, it is included in the Circlet anthology Jingle Balls.

It’s late here, and things are going to start early here. To everyone out there in the virtual world, have a Merry Christmas. (If you don’t celebrate Christmas, have a fantastic holiday that you do celebrate!)

Posted by EASchechter in forthcoming works, Heart's Master, Princes of Air, progress, short story, The White Raven, upcoming books, WIP, wordcount, 0 comments

And in other news….

Blood in the Rain II comes out October 25th, just in time for Halloween. Pre-orders are open now, and print will be available,

This anthology includes my short story Layover — sexy BDSM vampires!

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Posted by EASchechter in BDSM Vampires, Boosting the signal, new books, promotions, Release date, short story, upcoming books, upcoming work, 0 comments

And while that was happening

This was also happening.

New from me, and available tomorrow in all the virtual places…

PErsephone

 

In ancient times, when the Gods walked the world, the God of the Underworld kidnapped a girl named Persephone. He carried her off to the Realm of the Dead and through trickery, forced her to remain with him and become his Queen.

Everyone knows the story.

Or do they?

From Pagan Writers Press.

Posted by EASchechter in forthcoming works, new books, Release date, short story, Ta-da, upcoming work, yippee, 0 comments

Finished

It’s all done but the title.

The short story/novella/how-the-heck-long-is-this-anyway? that I’ve been calling Berlin is now done.

It’s also now a short novel, at 46,000 words. (Yes, in romance writing, that’s a novel.)

I just need to come up with something better than Berlin as a title. Because the first one was House of Sable Locks, and the third one will be Men of Mortal Seeming. (Yes. May the Little Tin Gods of Artifice help me, I’m writing a trilogy.)

Titles usually don’t give me trouble. But this one, I need to sleep on. And sleep on the next part of my Oh-my-God work schedule, a short story entitled Ghost Writer. Once that’s done, then I get to my edits on The School. When those are done, only then do I get to writing Hidden Things.

I’m going to be insane by Halloween. Watch me.

 

Posted by EASchechter in Sable Locks, short story, Ta-da, thirty, to-dos, upcoming work, WIP, writing, 0 comments

New today!

I have a new/old short story out today. Fools Rush In was originally published in Like a Trickster from Circlet Press. It’s now available as a stand-alone story from Forbidden Fiction, with a new, fantastic cover! Check it out! And click the picture to buy a copy — it’s only $.99!!!

FoolsRushIn_CvrFramePRT

Posted by EASchechter in new books, Release date, short story, 0 comments

Drop back ten and punt.

Kidnapped by Pirated was passed over. The editor loved it, but the publisher didn’t think it was a good fit for the anthology.

Back to the drawing board. I’ve already sent it out to another call.

Posted by EASchechter in short story, submission tracking, 0 comments