Tuesday, January 05, 2016

My 2015 in Writing

As I used to (and have skipped writing up for the past couple of years), I thought it might be useful to outline some of my writing goals, achievements, successes and missed in this past year.

Since 2012, I have been writing non-fiction paranormal books for Dundurn. Haunted Hamilton came out in 2012. Spooky Sudbury (co-authored with Jenny Jelen) came out in 2013. Tomes of Terror: Haunted Bookstores and Libraries came out in 2014.

While I wrote most of Creepy Capital: Ghost Stories of Ottawa and the National Capital Region in 2015, and turned the book in back in April 2015, the scheduling of the book in Dundurn's line-up didn't end up landing until Spring 2016. So I missed a year publishing a non-fiction title.  My Ottawa ghost story book will be coming out in a few months, this year. In fact, as I type this, my editor has gotten the book back to me and I need to return it by next month so that the publishing process to have the book out in May 2016 can stay on track.

Liz and I about to embark on a mid-winter downtown Ottawa ghost walk

Creepy Capital was a fun book to work on, and it involved multiple trips to Ottawa with my partner Liz who adopted the role of research assistant. We had a lot of fun going on the ghost walks as well as staying in one of the haunted hotels and exploring the museums and other locales that are covered in the book. There was lots of exploring and many fun side-line adventures involved. It felt, to me, like the MOST hands-on research I have done for any of my non-fiction paranormal books.

I also started working on the next non-fiction paranormal book HAUNTED HOSPITALS which is being co-authored with Rhonda Parrish (details for that one to be confirmed an announced)

This past year I managed to get the completed manuscript for A CANADIAN WEREWOLF IN NEW YORK to a fantastic editor recommended by folks from the Superstars Writing Seminars, where I am a guest instructor, and have been for the past three years. I'm still only half-way through the edits on that, and, while I had fully intended on getting the book out by the end of 2015, I'm still not quite there. (Oh well, at least it'll be something to get done THIS YEAR!)

2015 saw we sell a short story to a Rush themed anthology edited by Kevin J. Anderson (2113), as well as revise a story I'd sold the year before to another anthology edited by Rebecca Moesta (SPARKS)

Speaking of short stories, I also ended up becoming editor of a couple of anthologies.  The first was based on some amazing workshops led by Dean Wesley Smith and Kristine Kathryn Rusch. I'm editing EDITOR'S PICKS, an anthology idea I came up with while scheming with Dean during their absolutely fantastic Fiction River anthology workshops that are held in the winter each year in Lincoln City. That'll be coming out next year.  I also read through submissions from the Sudbury Writers Guild and selected stories that'll appear in an anthology that they will be publishing either later this year or in 2017.

Also, this past year, Liz and I rented an artist table at Hamilton Comic-Con. While I had volunteered at the Horror Writers Association tables at similar cons in Toronto in the past, this was my first solo author table at a comic con.  And it was an amazing experience. We have already booked tables for comic cons in Niagara Falls, Sudbury and are on the waiting list for Ottawa for later this year.

Meeting John Schneider (of Dukes of Hazzard, Smallville, etc) at Hamilton Comic-Con

Not only was Hamilton Comic-Con a great place to sell lots of copies of Haunted Hamilton and several of my other titles, but I got a chance to meet a pretty cool actor (John Schneider - AKA "Bo Duke") who and found out that he is a super friendly and wonderfully nice guy. He had been checking out the various artist tables and was asking me about my books, wondering which one he should buy. I made sure that he walked away with a signed copy of Haunted Hamilton (he'd never been to the city before, after all, and I figured he should have an interesting souvenir of the city), and I insisted giving him the copy -- after all, he had entertained me for many years; it was the least I could do.

So, whereas 2014 saw three books released, and 2015 didn't see any new releases of mine, it was a year of productivity, finding new promotional opportunities and getting some works in play for this year.


Emy Watson said...

What if I work at an advertising agency?
Sudbury web design

Mark Leslie said...

If you do, that's cool, Emy. Why do you ask?

Unknown said...
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