Tomorrow Lazarus Rising will be available to buy. The long road that started with this particular story back in January of 2010 has come to the end. And yet, in the words of the Joker, "... this is just the beginning." Hand down, the Joker is the best bad guy ever. I heard somewhere that there is more written about him than Batman. I doubt that's true but it makes his story even that more interesting. I worked hard on the antagonist in my story. The hardest thing to do in writing is make the antagonist a three dimensional person. Why did he or she go bad? What happened to flick the switch from ordinary to evil? How can the reader still relate in someway? I didn't want to do the whole ant-hero thing that is big right now (I do enjoy reading those type of stories) but I wanted the reader to believe Forrest Vance was capable of doing the shocking actions he takes in the book. The idea that a man like my bad guy (Forrest Vance is his name) is willing to literally sell his soul to the devil on the surface appears to be just fiction. But, in so many ways people make this leap everyday. IN some form evil does exist. One quote by the Joker that sums it up is, "We spend years checking underneath our bed for a monster only to learn that it is within us." I don't know if I have it exact, but you get the idea. I have personally battled many of those demons... and still do!
So what do I mean by 'this is just the beginning?' Well, for starters, there still is a ton of work to do. Now it is time to find a nice balance between selling my book and marketing me as an author. Certainly I will be asking people to buy it. But the real trick is to continue having new material for my fans to read. This doesn't just come in book form. This blog is one way to keep in touch, and I hope those of you who follow me have been enjoying it. I have been outlining my next book but also developing possible short stories or novellas that may go more in depth in some of my more minor characters in Lazarus Rising. There could be a sequel to this book... I haven't ruled it out. I want to continue to build my free Newsletter (sign up if you haven't already, form will be at the end of this blog). For those of you who have not signed up... I will be giving away a free Kindle to those who did already. There will be more giveaways and contests in the future. Don't miss out on the next one. So, in a nutshell, I hope that 'this is just the beginning' of a new career as a writer.
Tomorrow morning I will sending out links to the different formats of my book. The print version will be on sale for $12.99. Starting tomorrow and through Friday night the E-book version will be on sale for 99 cents. This is a special offer to all my fans. Thanks to all of you for your support, kind words, and excitement. I hope you enjoy the book.
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Here it is. The new cover of my book - just over two weeks away from release. Those who subscribe to my Newsletter (Click Here to join for free!) have already seen this. There will be other material I will release through my Newsletter... it will be insider stuff that you will only be able to get via my Newsletter, so, SIGN UP!
I'm in Boston this weekend for a workshop. It has been a great trip and I have a TON of pictures to share with my students about the revolutionary war. I have been to Lexington (shot heard 'round the world), the tavern our founders "discussed" politics, Faneuil Hall where the Sons of Liberty met, Paul Revere's house, and so much more. It has been a busy three days. We also went and saw the Mayflower and Plimoth Plantation (correct spelling) today - the ship and all the people role playing was absolutely amazing. It has been quite a trip... I will share some of my pictures here with you next time. For now - I'm keeping this short this week.
God Bless! And... if you haven't done so already - SIGN UP! Yes, you can win a brand new Kindle!
My grandson Sean
It's just around the corner, In fact, it's later on this month. My book, Lazarus Rising, will be released on Monday, October 27th. Of course you will be reminded of this on a real regular basis. Please, spread the word. That day happens to be my mom's birthday as well. I figured that day would bring me luck. Next week (unless you have signed up for my Newsletter, then, you have ALREADY received it) I will have a surprise for you. Make sure to tune in next where I will be blogging from Boston,. MA. Oh, and Click Here to sign up for that Newsletter - special treats, behinds the scenes stuff, contests, previews of cool information before I debut it on my Blog, and get special insights into my characters both in this book and future novels. And, whatever I haven't thought of yet to bring to my fans (in another words, much, much, MORE!).
I decided to write this blog to give other authors some insight into speaking with a younger audience. I was sitting at my desk one day contemplating what it would be like to live in Oceania and thinking of where I would tell Big Brother to stick it when it hit me! Most authors don't have to (I mean get to) speak with teens and pre-teens all day long. I remember my first day taking over the freshman class during my student teaching (don't laugh Rene) and how nervous I was. So I figured I would give some advice to those authors who may write for a younger crowd, but may not know what to expect when the opportunity to talk with them as a group comes along. Wait... before I go any further, I have to confess that the 1984 reference was not how I came up with this idea. Actually, my editor suggested it, but it sounded so cool being inspired by Winston. So anyway, here goes. I have just a couple of suggestions t start with; in the future I plan on adding to this because it is an area I can help in - and that's what we do as writers - help each other:
1. Don't Talk Down to Them - Here I would say it is important to treat them with respect. Instead of assuming they already know something or as if they know nothing ask a ton of questions. In my experience (for the most part) they are hungry to learn, but don't like to be treated as if they're stupid. Sixth, seventh and eighth graders still have a shade of sweetness to them. No, really, I mean it. If you can make whatever your talking about fun and relevant to their lives you won't have a problem.
2. Personal Experience - Use it. This is where I have learned to connect with them in my classes. Certainly you don't need to share with them about that time in Vegas (and, as we all know, what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas), but how you are just as human as they are really hits home. For example I have told my students about my last week in the 8th grade. We were all excited. I took a yellow marker and decided to make polka dots all over my teacher's shirt. Oops! He didn't take to kindly to it. In a moment of insanity I did something I normally wouldn't do; I didn't even think about it until it was too late. That teacher grabbed me by the collar and off to the principal I went. He yelled and screamed at my parents asking for the $12 for the cost of the shirt, the gas money it cost to go get the shirt (I'm not kidding), and world peace or something. Anyway, I felt terrible. I loved that teacher and in one moment he took all that away. I don't want to be that teacher. I tell my students that before I overreact about a behavior I don't like I think of that moment and how I felt. It keeps me grounded most of the time. I have been angry, but not enough to take away a students trust that I will either make amends if I am out of line or handle the situation appropriately. Our hopes, our dreams, our mistakes, our victories: these are our best lessons. at least that has been my experience.
3. Show No Fear - This is simple... be prepared! The better prepared you are for what you will be talking with them about - the less fear you will show. And by being prepared I mean have a back up plan to the back up plan. Bring more than you can possibly get to in the allotted time. If you think it is a 45 minute lesson, chances are it is 10 minutes.
I always promised myself I would not be the type of writer that does those articles on "7 Ways to Better Abs" or "Ten Techniques to Get Her Out of Your Life for Good." Oh well, life goes on. I hope this bit of information helps all of you for the next time you find yourself needing to entertain a large group of minions (that's a term of endearment). More to come - don't forget to sign up for my Newsletter! Only those signed up will have the opportunity to win the new Kindle I'm giving away!
Anthony D. Flores loves to spend his summers writing fiction. His strong Christian faith and love for this great country find its way into his fiction. His work is also available on Amazon by Clicking Here.