Sunday, January 29, 2012

Props to the Peeps

Hey boys and girls -

This isn't Joe; it's Steven. I'm who you'd call the man behind the vampire. Think of me as Joe's Muppeteer, the guy with his hand up the back of the main dude, moving his mouth and doing all his talking for him. Kind of a gnarly way of wording it, but also an effective way. And yes, I always remember to wash my hand afterward. After filling the blog - and now, the novel - with Joe's words, I thought maybe it was time to do a little talking of my own, without my hand up anybody's back.

And without anybody's hand up mine.

This morning, JOE VAMPIRE the novel was uploaded to both Amazon and Barnes and we wait for them to appear for sale on 2/1/2012. I may blow a blood vessel from keeping the excitement down to a dull internal roar. How many times are you allowed to check for the listing before the Internet kicks you off?

I'll let you know when I find out.

So far, I'm at twelve. The Internet doesn't seem to mind yet.

Celebrated the Upload and a belated fifteenth anniversary with a Dave + Betty (me and wife) hot air balloon trip over the wild Sonoran desert. It was the most incredible ride not available at Disneyland, and a great way to cap off completion of my first independently-published novel. I highly recommend it to everyone who wants to see the world from a different perspective. Hopefully we all fit into that category at some point or another in our lives.

I'm there now. Even more so after the ride.

I wanted to bring something to your attention: after all the hoopla I've thrown out about making JOE into a real-live eBook, anyone who reads him will find something notably missing, something included by nearly every author ever newly published - and something especially necessary for those of us who follow the Trail of the Independents.

JOE VAMPIRE lacks an acknowledgments page.

But it wasn't left out by accident.

My reasoning here is this: only those who are gracious enough to read the book would be able to see what's on that page. And I wanted a more public forum to express my gratitude to some folks who helped put the go in JOE. Inspired by fellow independent author MR Merrick, who recently listed a whole slew of acknowledgements on his blog (go here and find the post "Unleash the ARCS" to see...and pick up his awesome YA fantasy book EXILED and it's sequel SHIFT, out 2/1/12 as well, while you're there), I'm throwing the thank-yous up on the blog.

Not throwing them up on the blog, per se.   But throwing them. Up. On the blog.

So, without further stupidity from me, away we go - and in the finest Joe tradition, I'm using bullet points:

  • Hugest thanks possible to my beautiful wife and three magical kids for being so patient, supportive and understanding while I was head-down in my laptop, clicking away at Joe's adventures for the last five months.  You guys are the reason I want to do good work.  I love you.
  • Big ups to my brother Vince, for pre-reading and editing the early posts, and liking the story enough to suggest that I self-publish.  Good call, dude!
  • Thank you muchly to everyone who read the blog from its inception...I'm not even sure who all of you are, but I see worldwide audience listings in the stats - including Russia and the UK.  I never would have thought my words were cool enough to reach all the way over there...very humbling.  Special thanks to Ernestina, for playing along and adding comments to the posts!   
  • Sincerest appreciation to my peeps on Facebook - friends and family, every one of you - for the "Likes" and the shares and the words of support and encouragement.  Every time I threw out an update, you threw back with "Aw, yeah!" and kept me believing that I have an audience for my goofy little stories.  Can't thank you enough for that.
  • Much obliged to the team at Steve TV - Jill Booher, Jody Pauletich and Chris Ely - for always laughing along with my silliness and for pushing me to do something with it.  You guys are the bomb diggity. 
  • Props to fellow independent author L.C. DeCarlo, for stepping up to be my first beta reader.  Her great guidance on the beta process and feedback on the finished JOE manuscript were so very much appreciated.  She writes really wonderful stories that are REALLY about need to check her out.  Thanks, L.C.!
  • Great thank-yous to everyone who follows Joe on Twitter and retweets the links and the silly stuff he says.  I'm getting the hang of that site, I's a brilliant community filled with great people, and I'm having a great time exploring it.
  • Sweet gratitude to the JOE VAMPIRE cover team - Marie Luna, for snapping the photo; Lexi Luna for growing Joe's fangs and other magical elements; and Adney Koga, for throwing in the bricks and general clean-up.  You guys are too cool...Joe is an actual someone because of you. 
  • Mad love to my mom (and dad), my sisters, aunts and uncles, nieces and nephews, who have always encouraged me on my creative path, no matter how long it's taken to reach a destination.  Hopefully, this is just the beginning.      
I have no doubt I've missed someone, though it definitely isn't for lack of appreciation...just the poor memory of middle age settling in.  To everyone out there who thought - and continues to think - that Joe is worth reading, or listening to, or spending even a minute of your hard-won time and money to play with - thank you, and thank you, and thank you again. 

May Joe and I be worthy of you. 


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