April writing wrap-up.

Attention, all personnel: 2019 is one third gone. Already.

What can I say about April? The biggest thing I can say about April is that there’s not a lot I can say about what I was doing during April. Was I busy? Oh, hell yes. I started writing a new novel, and also completed a smaller project. There was talk about future things, and let’s not forget our journey to Denver for the annual StarFest Convention. There are other things afoot, as well, and I’ll get to talking about them in due course (read, “When my overlords say it’s okay to chat about them.”).

Until then, here’s last month’s rundown:

Star Trek: The Next Generation – Available Light  Picking up the action in the aftermath of David Mack’s novel Control and my own TNG tale from 2017, Hearts and Minds. As promised, the book was published in trade paperback, e-Book, and audiobook formats on April 9th.

Unidentified Tie-In Project – I started work on this on April 1st. While it’s the main thing in my writing plate at the moment (and will continue to be so until I deliver the manuscript in late July), in reality I’m working on it in and around other tasks. Hopefully, there will be some sort of announcement forthcoming.

Another Tie-In Project – Something else I did alongside the new novel. I was contacted by the publisher on February 26th to gauge my interest, and of course I was like, “Oh, hell yeah I’m in!” I delivered a manuscript on April 23rd, and I’m presently awaiting editorial feedback.

“Lost and Found,” a Short Story for a Science Fiction Anthology – Writer/Editor Danielle Ackley-McPhail invited me to participate in a new collection she’s curating, Footprints In the Stars, for her own publishing outfit, eSpec Books. As she describes it, all of the stories will revolve around the central theme of humanity discovering evidence that we are not alone in the universe. She’s stressed that she’s not looking for “first contact stories,” so we have to dig a little deeper and come up with something else. After much casting about and interruptions galore coming from every possible direction, I finally managed to wrap it up and send it in last night. Here’s hoping it doesn’t suck. Footprints is but one component of a rather ambitious Kickstarter campaign that you should, like, totally check out.

Star Trek: The Mirror Universe in Comics and Novels” – This one came along suddenly during mid-February, with Ben Robinson from Eaglemoss and their Star Trek Starships Collection asking if I might be interested in contributing some material for a new model they were creating. So, I ended up writing an article about the “Mirror Universe” and all of its appearances in various Star Trek novels and comics over the years going all the way back to the 1980s and working forward. The resulting piece will be published in the magazine accompanying the I.S.S. Enterprise NCC-1701-D, a “shop exclusive” installment of the model series. According to the website, the model will begin shipping to customers any time now.

Other stuff in the pipeline:

Toy Story: Sheriff Woody IncrediBuilds Book/Model Set – One of two “mystery” projects I’ve listed here over the past several months but couldn’t talk about. This is from Insight Editions, who you may recall hired me to do a couple of Star Trek-themed books for similar kits. As with those, I got to pen a book told from Woody’s point of view, which will be packaged with a cool little wooden model kit. I yammered a bit about this here, along with….

Toy Story: Buzz Lightyear IncrediBuilds Book/Model Set – Just like Woody, good ol’ Buzz gets his own cool model along with a book written by moi. Both book/model sets are slated for publication on May 6th. To infinity…and beyond!

Still Another Tie-In Project – Again, something that came about in most unexpected fashion. I was contacted by the publisher on March 22nd and we chatted a bit before I went to my corner to draft some sample writing. After getting some feedback later in the month, I sent more samples but it appears the project is on a back burner while its originator tends to other, more pressing matters. Once I get dialed in as to what they’re wanting, this has the potential to be a very fun project with awesome potential future opportunities waiting in the wings. I just have to not screw up this one. No pressure, right?

Superhero Novella Project – As announced back on February 21st, I’m teaming up with friends and fellow word pushers Russ Colchamiro, Mary Fan, and Aaron Rosenberg–they of Crazy 8 Press–to make with some superhero shenanigans. We’re still a ways out on this one, with a projected publication sometime in 2021, but hey! It’s something new for the project board, so into the list it goes. Obviously we’re only in the very earliest stages of this thing’s gestation, and more details will be forthcoming as appropriate.

Oh, Hey! Yet Another Tie-In Project – I can’t really describe anything about this one without giving away hints as to what it might be. It’s definitely an interesting endeavor – one I’m pursuing with a friend and fellow writer. Between us, we’ve written a handful of short “proof of concept” manuscripts, and we worked with the client throughout February as we continued to fine tune what they want. There may be an announcement coming about this very soon, but until that happens the only thing I can say is that this is a slice of pure fanboy fun. Stay tuned!

Wealth, Wayward Teens, and Wards: A Life of Crime Brings No Rewards!” – An essay Kevin and I concocted for Zlonk! Zok! Zowie! The Subterranean Blue Grotto Guide to Batman ’66 Season One, a new collection of essays focusing on the first season of the 1966 Batman TV series. Edited by Jim Beard, each essay/writer takes a look at a different story from the show’s first year, which mostly means each of us taking a 2-part episode. Kevin and I drew “The Joker Goes to School” and “He Meets His Match, the Grisly Ghoul,” which features Caesar Romero’s second appearance as the Clown Prince of Crime. We delivered our contribution on December 31st, and our editor told us a couple of weeks later that aside from one little easily addressed tweak, we passed muster. At last report, Jim was eyeing early summer for releasing the collection. Stay tuned for more info as it becomes available!

Star Trek: Kirk Fu – An Introduction to the Final Frontier’s Most Feared Martial Art. YAAASSSSSSS. This is a project I pitched a couple of years ago, and it sat in limbo forever before a new editor at Insight Editions, Paul Ruditis, came aboard, and things started cooking with gas. The book was officially announced on June 14th, 2018, including some peeks at concept art, and of course it’s all totally insane, just as I originally intended. I got to see a tentative cover for this one last month, it’s gloriously hysterical, and I can’t wait to show it off. Unfortunately and for reasons I still haven’t been given, the book’s publication date has apparently been pushed back to March 2020. When I get more details, I’ll be sure to share them.

Still Another Unidentified Tie-In Project – This one is now officially listed as “in limbo” until further notice. I can’t say it’s canceled because there’s still a contract involved and I’ve already been paid a portion of the money, but it’s been all quiet on every front so far as trying to get this thing to move forward. After submitting a revised outline to my editor over a year ago, I’ve been stuck since then while we await a response from the licensor. I’ve attempted to follow up a few times in the intervening months, but so far I’ve had no luck. I guess they’ll find me when they’re ready. It’s not like I’m drowning in free time or anything, but I’d really like to get on with this one. Here’s hoping.

Possible future projects:

Original SF novel concept – Something I’d started a while back, refreshed some older notes and added some new ones. This one’s been on the back burner for a while, because…well…look up at all that other stuff. I’ve been giving this one some thought lately, as it’s the sort of thing I can scribble about during lunch breaks and such at work. I’d like to get it to a point that I feel comfortable approaching at least one editor with it. I guess we’ll see.

Original e-Book concept – I’ve been pondering an idea for a new series – something akin to the “men’s adventure” style books I loved back in the 80s and 90s. It would be a setting for which I could write shorter tales – novellas, likely – for e-Book distribution. It would be something of an SF-ish/action bent, with (I hope) lots of humor. Not quite campy, but definitely lighter in tone. This is still very rough at the moment, but it’s something I’d really like to get into once I get some free time (HAH! HAH AGAIN!).

Aloha, May.

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