Book delays; SAAL 1 now available as an audiobook
I'm writing to share some good news and some bad news. It's the Friday before a holiday weekend here in the US of A, so let's start off on a positive note.
Stay Awhile and Listen: Book I now on Audible
After a lengthy production cycle, the first volume in my STAY AWHILE AND LISTEN series is now available as an audiobook! This is very exciting, and came along at just the right time to boost my spirits. You can get the book on Audible, and on Audiobooks.com.
SAAL 1 was narrated by Mike Rylander, an extremely talented actor who also narrated DUNGEON HACKS, released on Audible and Audiobooks.com last fall. Mike did a bang-up job on SAAL 1 as well. Thank you for your hard work, Mike, and thank you Ryan van Barneveld from Audiobooks.com for leading this charge.
This process began just over a year ago, when Ryan emailed out of the blue expressing interest in converting SAAL 1 to audio. I mentioned that I was putting the finishing touches on another videogame history book, DUNGEON HACKS, and Ryan was gracious enough to sign me to two contracts at once.
I can't say enough positive words about Ryan and his team. They were attentive, patient, diligent, and aimed for the best possible quality and then went one level higher.
What's that? STAY AWHILE AND LISTEN 2? Well...
How's your 2016 been? Okay, I hope. Me, I barely remember a second of mine, and most of 2015 is a blur, too. Last May, just before I signed contracts with Audiobooks.com—writing is ever a feast-or-famine business—I created an opportunity to write BREAK OUT, a hardcover volume chronicling the making of over two dozen seminal Apple II games.
I knew this would mean juggling BREAK OUT and POINT OF FATE, the sequel to HERITAGE, and eventually adding SAAL 2 into the mix. Still, I took the opportunity. The prospect of a hardcover book, coupled with a sizable advance at a time when I was in desperate need of a cash infusion, was too good to pass up.
I thought I could handle writing more than one book at the same time. I set a schedule I believed I could manage: POINT OF FATE on M-W, BREAK OUT on Tu-Th, and Friday for both, with plenty of freelance work and interviews, writing, and revisions for Episodic Content stories stirred in.
For the past year, I've been working five to six days a week, sometimes seven, for an average of 50 hours a week. Usually more. Needless to say, the schedule has proven to be too much. As a result, POINT OF FATE, BREAK OUT, and possibly SAAL 2 have been delayed until 2017. (SAAL 2 is still up in the air.)
I am profoundly disappointed in myself. I didn't take on so much work out of greed. Believe me, I haven't yet reached a point in my career where I'm motivated by greed, and I have the tax statements to prove it. I was motivated by ambition and a desire to create. Writing is my greatest pleasure; when opportunities arise to do more of it, I have a bad habit of saying yes before stopping to think about whether I can do what's being asked of me (or, in most cases, what I'm asking others to help me do).
I'll be posting updates on specific books over the next few weeks and months. They're all going well—I should be able to ship BREAK OUT to the publisher next week—and I'm happy with them. That's the most important thing, I've come to realize: I need to be proud of my work.
That means slowing down and taking on no more than one book project at a time from now on—until, that is, I find myself in a position where I have the financial freedom to clear my calendar of all professional obligations except writing books. That's the dream, but we're not there quite yet. (To be honest, I don't think I'd shed freelance jobs even if I could because I enjoy the wide range of content and assignments that come from freelance writing.)
If you were looking forward to one or more of the books I mentioned, I'm sorry to keep you waiting. But I promise that they are coming, and each will be worth the wait.
Thanks for reading, and for understanding.