Yesterday saw the release of the next Lawson novel, THE RIPPER, which puts Lawson back in Boston trying to uncover the identity of a serial killer while dodging a Chinese assassin, dealing with Marty's advances, counseling Niles, and dealing with Arthur's past. It's a chaotic mix of non-stop action and mayhem. And sales have been very good indeed! You can grab your copy of THE RIPPER for the Kindle here and for the Nook here. But THE RIPPER isn't the only new adventure out... Earlier today, I released SIX TIMES DEADLY, the first Lawson story collection featuring six short stories: The Price of a Good Drink, Interlude, Red Tide, Enemy Mine, Rudolf The Red Nosed Rogue, and Oathbreaker. Along with those six stories, I also included some cool bonuses: the script for the first part of the Lawson graphic novel and the first two chapters from the Talya spin-off novel series CODENAME: BELLADONNA. Yep, you heard right: there's going to be a Talya spin-off novel series. It's been in the works for a while now and with the advent of ebooks, I can actually write what I want without having to appeal to the whims of New York City publishing. I have three Talya novels sketched out and expect to complete the first one this year. I'm excited about it; Talya's a great character and well-deserving of her own series. Hopefully, the fans will enjoy it. You can grab SIX TIMES DEADLY for the Kindle here and >for the Nook here. And finally, FROSTY THE HITMAN is now available for sale. This is the freebie short story I gave away on Christmas Day, but that window has now closed so if you want it, it'll cost you 99 cents. You can grab that for the Kindle here and for the Nook here. Next week, I'll be releasing OATHBREAKER on its own, but if you want this new story now, you'll have the get SIX TIMES DEADLY. I'd like to thank all of you who have bought THE RIPPER. I'm very pleased with it's rapid sales and success. And I'm especially thrilled to be finding so many new Lawson fans out there! Enjoy the new adventures - more are coming!
With the entire Lawson Vampire backlist selling well on both Amazon and Barnes & Noble, I've decided to get a lot of stories, novellas, and novels out into the ebook marketplace. So, to give you a snapshot of what's ahead, here's a list of what you can expect between now and next year. The exact schedule is up in the air as I juggle multiple projects, but this should be a fair indicator of about when you can expect things to show up for sale. THE MADAGASCAR MATTER - This was supposed to be a serialized novella but it's grown into a full-fledged early novel (meaning pre-Fixer) with Lawson and Zero in Africa. I'm still finishing this up, but I expect it will be out by the end of March. THE SHEPHERD - Not sure what this is going to be yet. It's already proving it's too involved to be a short story, so odds are good this will be a novella. I expect to have this out around April/May. MISSION: MALTA - A serialized piece for my newsletter, so this will end in December unless it takes on a mind of its own. This will be a short story. THE CAIRO CONNECTION, CANARY TRAP, A FORCED DISAPPEARANCE - A trio of longer short stories originally supposed to be published by a certain UK chapbook publisher under the banner of DARK OPS. Due to problems with that publisher, I'll be bringing these out myself. Probably a Fall release. THE RIPPER - Officially, the 6th novel in the series, it will be out in trade paperback from St. Martin's next Spring. Other Lawson projects include two other novels (not releasing the titles yet, but they're coming) and a few more short stories. Lawson's world is growing everyday and new fans are getting caught up in the rapture - between the ebooks, print novels, and the TV series, things are going to get crazy. And we still have to get the graphic novel finished at some point as well. Lots of stuff happening so please spread the word about Lawson and his adventures. And if you don't have an ereader yet for your smartphone, a Kindle, Nook, iPad, or other ereader, you should probably get one soon. 🙂 Need to get caught up on some Lawson adventures you've missed? Go here if you've got the Kindle or Kindle app: Lawson on Kindle | Go here if you've got a Nook or Nook app or other ereader that handles epub files. Lawson on Nook Additionally, I will be working on the first NINJA novel, the sword & sorcery epic starring Ran, a recent ninja school graduate. I've gotten a number of emails lately asking when that will be available, so I'll be working on that. I also have to do revisions on my boys adventure series THE NINJA APPRENTICE. Busy times ahead, but good fun - lots coming at you! 🙂
Got a busy week ahead:
- I'll be sending out the next chapter of THE MADAGASCAR MATTER later today. This has been on-hold lately because of the other projects I've been involved in as well as some personal stuff that cropped up. In any event, we'll be back on a regular schedule now, after leaving Lawson in a lurch (as I normally do, lol). So if you've subscribed to the ongoing serial, look for the next chapter coming your way soon!
- Rewrites continue on the YA adventure series and I'll be getting that back to my agent later this week. I'm excited about this one because it's going to be big. Very big. More news when I can share it.
- I need to rework a beat-sheet for the feature movie I'm working on.
- Along those lines, I'm reading over a book my manager in LA wrote, so that should be fun as well.
- I'm looking over website redesign plans for the new website for THE FIXER that will hopefully be unveiled this autumn. It will be the destination for all things Lawson. Stay tuned!
- Got a few investor meetings lined up as well.
- ...and, of course, more training.
Artist Brian McCulloch has delivered the final painting for THE FIXER graphic novel cover and it's fantastic stuff! I especially admire how well he was able to capture actor Brandon Stumpf and the background of Vienna (where the first part of the story takes place). This is going to be a gorgeous book and Brian's skill definitely adds a great deal to its worth. If you haven't ordered the book yet, you need to now. Don't wait because these will go quickly once it's done. Right now, there are no plans to offer this through a traditional distributor, so unless you get in on this great book now, you won't be able to find a copy unless you search the secondary market and don't mind paying hundreds of dollars for it. You can get it right now for just $19.95 ($14.95 + $5 shipping anywhere in the world) by using the form below.
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Note: This is a reprint of a column I started writing last year that fizzled out as my schedule got more complex. I'll be reprinting the columns here over the next few months and then continuing where I left off last year. Enjoy! If I were pitching my current project as a movie in Hollywood, here’s what the logline would sound like: “Two guys with no real experience in the television business decide to ask private investors to front them millions so they can produce 13 episodes of a new supernatural TV series that they will then sell broadcast rights to domestically and internationally, thereby hopefully making hundreds of millions of dollars and turning the entire Hollywood business model on its head.” Sounds absolutely ludicrous, right? But that is, in fact, what my business partner Jaime and I are doing. Let me back up for a moment and give you a few more details. I’m a writer. It’s what I do. I’ve had over a 16 novels published, co-authored two non-fiction books, had scores of short stories appear in print alongside some heavy hitters like Stephen King, and have written ad copy for everyone from Polaroid to Red Lobster Restaurants. I’ve scripted comics, screenplays, and turned four 3-minute webisodes into a novel. I don’t just write in one medium, preferring instead to try my hand at anything that helps me bump my game up to the next level. Over the years, I’ve flirted a lot with Hollywood. There’s been some serious sexual tension, culminating a few times with deals that looked reasonably good on paper. But I’ve never jumped into the sack and here’s why: Hollywood doesn’t pay writers enough. If you’re interested in how Hollywood makes its money, there is no finer book to read than THE BIG PICTURE: Money & Power in Hollywood by Edward James Epstein. I read that book several years ago and it opened my eyes. Novelists especially tend to have a very fairytale image of Hollywood. They imagine that if they write a book, that Hollywood will come calling with an option (this is a small price – almost a rental fee, really – giving the producer or exec the ability to shop the project around and possibly secure financing, cast, crew, etc. within a certain time frame (usually 6-18 months)) or an outright rights purchase. If the movie then gets made, the studio will cut the writer a handsome check and the novelist gets the thrill of seeing their book turned into a movie. When I started cutting my teeth in publishing, I imagined it would be an incredible experience. What I didn’t count on was the interminable wait, the endless teases, and the fact that Hollywood doesn’t want novelists writing anything or sticking their noses anywhere into the process. Some writers can live with that. They take the money and run, knowing that the end result may well be such an extreme departure from their original novel that it bears resemblance in name only – if they’re lucky. But when studios wanted my work, I knew what they could reasonably expect to make off of my creations. And I wanted more than they were offering. Of course they balked and all the whispered promises evaporated. Last year, exhausted at the number of television shows that were coming out that were, to be overly kind, crap, my friend Jaime and I sat down and discussed the idea of trying to do something ourselves. When we hashed out the concept of using my un-vampire vampire series of novels as our first project, the first person I bounced the idea off of was a good friend of mine who works in the film/TV industry. He’s well-known, so I won’t mention his name here, but he pretty much knows everyone worth knowing in Los Angeles and New York City. I called him and told him what we were planning. Then I asked him if we were crazy. What he told me was this: “If you can make this work, then the sky is the limit. You will open doors that have never been open to you before and you will change the way Hollywood works in TV.” Then he offered to come on and be part of our executive board. That was good enough for us. We started New Ronin Entertainment and chose THE FIXER as our first project. Ronin, in feudal Japan, were masterless samurai – called “wave men” because they owed allegiance to no lord. The name felt appropriate and our mission seemed sound, albeit tough as hell. We would find private investors willing to back us in the production of thirteen episodes for the first season. (Networks usually greenlight, or approve, a pilot and then order up to twelve additional episodes for a first season run). We would put a team together to shoot, edit, and package the series, as well as sell it domestically and internationally. I would write all the episodes, thereby guaranteeing that the sanctity of my novels stayed intact and that I had complete control over the story lines and characters. The novels take place in New England; the cast and crew would be from New England; and we hoped that our investors would also be from the region. THE FIXER would be born and raised in our backyard. We thought that was pretty cool. We enlisted two experienced directors who had worked in both television and independent films for years (therefore they knew how to work on a tight budget). Our sales force was composed of industry vets who had shepherded major films to hundreds of millions of dollars worth of sales. Experienced vets and up-and-comers made up our crew. And our art & marketing department worked hard to develop a consistent look for our flagship project. You can see the results thus far at our official website http://www.thefixer.tv But we needed money to pull this off. There was no business precedent whose plan we could use to attract investors, so we put it together after weeks of research into Hollywood budgets, sales forecasts, and more. Trying to divulge what Hollywood spends and what it makes is harder than cracking into the National Security Agency, but at long last, we felt we had a workable business prospectus. Our offer was generous; we knew it had to be. We offered a 50% return on investment within 24 months to those who chose to back us. The task now was to try to convince wealthy Bostonians and New Englanders that a TV series entirely produced in their backyard was a viable and worthwhile investment. But first, we had to find them. And then we had to get in the front door…