The Desertera Series, Writing & Publishing Articles

What It “Really” Takes to Write and Publish a Novel

Have you ever wondered what it REALLY takes to write and publish a novel? Head on over to Amanda’s site to find out!

Reading Over People's Shoulders...

TCD Blog Tour Banner

Please give a big welcome to Kate. M Colby. This rad gal is an amazingly talented writer!  I am excited to be hosting one of her articles in honour of her newly released book, The Cogsmith’s Daughter. You need to go check this gal out ASAP and snap up a copy.

I had the privileged of Beta-reading The Cogsmith’s Daughter for Kate early in her process. Her world building is beautiful and her characters are dynamic. You can’t help getting sucked in.  I’m enjoying it just as much (ok, more!) the second time. It’s amazing to see how the work has changed from rough draft to a polished, professional, novel.

As an aspiring author myself I wanted some truth bombs straight from the horse’s mouth. Kate has graciously given us an inside look at what it really takes to publish a novel.

AP Fiction Book CoversKate M. Colby is an author of cross-genre fiction and creative…

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Fiction Blog, Writing Updates

“Special Edition” Mid-Month Check-In: October 2015

Hey, there everyone! I’m going to do something a little different with this mid-month check-in and answer a few burning questions you all have been asking as well as recap The Cogsmith’s Daughter Book Launch Blog Tour, so you can catch up on any posts you missed.

So here we go:

When is the paperback being released?

Fingers crossed – the end of next week (or beginning of the following week). I have finally sorted out the issues with my print-on-demand distributor, and all I have to do is wait for my updated files to be accepted. This should take roughly three business days.

Where can I buy the paperback?

On all the same online retailers as you find the ebook AND on my site. I’ll have a PayPal link in the blog sidebar (pending any more unforeseen technological issues, of course!).

Can I get a signed paperback copy?

YES! I will be selling signed copies directly from my website.

When will the sequel be coming out?

Sometime in 2016. If you want to be the FIRST to hear about it (and read it), you can sign up for my author newsletter HERE.

If you have any other questions, please leave them in the comments, shoot me an email, or get in touch via social media.

TCD Blog Tour BannerThe Cogsmith’s Daughter Book Launch Blog Tour Recap

Monday, October 12 | What the Heck is Steampunk Dystopian, Anyway?

In this post, hosted by the wonderful Kate Evans, I explain the basics of both the steampunk and dystopian genres, as well as what attracted me to a “steampunk dystopian” mash up.

Tuesday, October 13 | The Evolution of The Cogsmith’s Daughter: From First Draft to Final Product

Here, I’m hosted by Ula, and I share how I went about writing my first draft as well as some “trivia” about how the final book differs from my first draft.

Wednesday, October 14Desertera: Conception and Construction

Zach asked me how I came up with the idea for Desertera, my novel’s world, as well as how I went about building it. In this post, all is revealed!

Thursday, October 15 | How I “Became” a Writer (and Stumbled Upon the Idea for My Novel)

Charles wanted to know more about my background as a writer and how I came up with the idea for The Cogsmith’s Daughter. This one goes way back, folks.

Friday, October 16 | Author Hall of Fame Introduction

Chris the Story Reading Ape was kind enough to add me to his Author Hall of Fame. As my introduction, I talk about how my sociology background influences the purpose behind my writing.

DON’T FORGET – As part of the blog tour, you can enter my Goodreads giveaway for your chance to win one of three signed copies of The Cogsmith’s Daughter – enter HERE.

Now…on to the normal check-in. I’ll keep it brief!


Writing has taken a backseat to promoting my book launch and my new day job. I’m seriously considering doing NaNoWriMo to force myself back into it (after all, it worked out well last year!), but I’m not sure if I will or not.


Beyond the blog tour, I’ve been trying to lay out specific plans and schedules for a few other projects I have in mind.


All good here. Daniel’s been super supportive during my book launch, despite his own obligations with school. Though, I think we could both use a week off to rest!


Migraines are down, but still existent. Healthy eating is…less existent. I am walking two miles a day, thanks to my new public transport commute, so at least I’m getting some exercise!

All right. I think that does it for me! I hope you all are having a great October, and I wish you all the productivity and accomplishment you deserve!

How are your new year’s resolutions going? Have you been keeping up with your own writing goals? Share your progress and/or commiserate as needed!

Fiction Blog, The Desertera Series

I’m Going On Tour!

…virtually, anyway!

I’m pleased to announce that, starting Monday, October 12th, I will be going on a blog tour in support of the launch of The Cogsmith’s Daughter (Desertera #1). The tour will last until Friday, October 23rd (I’ll be taking the weekend off) and will be a series of guest posts on the blogs of some of my favorite indie authors and fellow writers. Even though all of you know the book is coming out, I highly encourage you to follow the blog tour. I’ll be revealing new information about my inspiration behind TCD, my writing process, and so much more! There may even be a giveaway involved (hint, hint)!

Below is the schedule. It is also be posted on my Events page so it isn’t lost in the blog sea.

Date Host Topic Blog URL
Mon. 10/12 Kate E. What the Heck is Steampunk Dystopian, Anyway?
Tue. 10/13 Ula How I Wrote My Novel’s First Draft (and How it Differs from the Final Product)
Wed. 10/14 Zach Desertera: Conception and Construction
Thu. 10/15


Charles How I Became a Writer (and Stumbled Upon the Idea for My Novel)
Fri. 10/16 Chris Author Hall of Fame Introduction
Mon. 10/19 Jonas Video Interview
Tue. 10/20 Helen A Virtual Tour of Desertera
Wed. 10/21 Amanda What It “Really” Takes to Write and Publish a Novel
Thu. 10/22 Teri Desertera’s Religion and Themes
Fri. 10/23 Kevin The Pros and Cons of Using an Invented Word in Your Title

Daughter -C2And, don’t forget – The Cogsmith’s Daughter is only available for the special pre-order price of $0.99 for one more week! Reserve your copy at any of these fine retailers:

Amazon US, Amazon UK, Amazon AU, etc.

Barnes & Noble




Fiction Blog, Writing Updates

Mid-Month Check-In: September 2015

I can’t believe September is already half over. I’ve spent the last six weeks (seven weeks, if we’re counting my pre-move time off in Kansas) being a full-time author. While a few of those weeks were unproductive (thanks to the move), the last four have been incredibly productive. I’m happy to report that there are several exciting announcements coming up, and I cannot wait to give you a taste of what I’ve been working on in this post!

For a quick refresher on all the goals I’m working on this year, check out my 2015 resolutions (most of which I should probably just throw out the window at this point!).


I’ve managed to write about four and a half new chapters in Desertera #2. Admittedly, I have a bit of sophomoric insecurity this time around, so I’ll be sending chapters to my alpha reader as I go so she can help me stay on track. When I wrote The Cogsmith’s Daughter (Desertera #1) (whose cover I revealed yesterday!), I finished the first draft in 30 days during NaNoWriMo 2014. I didn’t have time to be insecure. This time around, I have much more time to fret while writing, so I’m trying to push through it as best I can.

BP Business Card - Back - No BleedBUSINESS

This is the most exciting part of the news! As many of you will have seen yesterday, I have the ebook cover for The Cogsmith’s Daughter ready to go. As of this writing, I am still waiting on the final paperback cover, but I expect it any day now. Likewise, the novel’s editing and formatting are both done! You can even add it to your “to-read” list on Goodreads! Of course, no novel is ever perfect, so I expect a few typos will emerge when my keen-eyed newsletter subscribers receive their advance review copies this week (assuming they jump right into the book, that is) or when I do my last-minute oh-crap-this-is-releasing-soon third/fourth proofread.

On a purely “business” note, I have established new author photos (one for social media and one for my book covers), which I think fit my genre and brand much better than my old photo. Also, my logo designer, Brenda, saw my business card poll and leaped to my rescue with a gorgeous, professional business card design, which you can see above and below this paragraph. Needless to say, she is the best, and you should all click on her name and bombard her with orders.

Last, I aBP Business Card - Front - No Bleedm working on arranging blog tour to promote The Cogsmith’s Daughter during its upcoming launch. I will probably send out more details later, but if you are immediately interested in hosting me on your blog, feel free to shoot me an email to If you’d like to suggest your own post ideas, I’m game — but I do have a list of my own in case you don’t!


Things are going well in the “real life” department. Daniel is rocking his classes and slowly but surely conquering Greek. Thomas is being a bad ass, as per usual. I’ve started a new job as a copywriter for a wine marketing agency…so even if Boxthorn Press is a catastrophic failure, I can at least say that I am officially a “professional writer!” Other than that, we’re just monitoring our budget and trying to spend quality time together whenever our crazy schedules allow.


As I am just coming out of temporary unemployment, I am not quite yet re-insured and have become somewhat of a hypochondriac. Despite the fact that I am eating healthy (…who needs exercise when you get your veggies?), I am a bit stressed about health. I’m hoping to join the Yale gym with Daniel and get back to exercising soon. In the meantime, though, I am happy to report that my migraines have been minimal and my outlook (other than the mild hypochondria) positive.

And that does it for my September mid-month check-in. Remember, if you’re interested in helping out with my blog tour, shoot me an email. Also, make sure you stay around this corner of the interwebs for more exciting news to come!

How are your new year’s resolutions going? Have you been keeping up with your own writing goals? Share your progress and/or commiserate as needed!