April writing wrap-up.

So, how about that April, huh?

Yeah.

It was pretty much an extended version of the last half of March, in which I and the rest of Clan Ward stuck close to the house aside from occasional ventures to the grocery store and to pick up food from various locally owned and operated restaurants. Several of those places are family businesses and we’re trying to do our part to keep them going at least at some percentage of the traffic (and money) they’d ordinarily be pulling in. We definitely want them to still be around when this is over.

The kids are continuing to attend school via virtual means, and as my wife and I were already working at home that part of our lives hasn’t been disrupted too much. A few more conventions I’d planned to attend have either been postponed or cancelled for the year. While I miss the opportunity to catch up with friends I only see at conventions and such, we obviously understand the desire to keep safe everyone involved with putting on such events. We continue to do our small part to hopefully see this put behind us sooner rather than later.

Meanwhile, the pushing of the words continues unabated.

For those who still care about such things, my work as a consultant to CBS Global Franchise Management also continued, mostly in the vein of reading and commenting on various things. As I said last month, even with most everyone working at home there’s still bunches of Star Trek stuff happening in various corners of the sandbox. As I also said and will continue to say: It’s definitely a fun time to be a fan. Stay tuned for updates as The Powers That Be decide such things can be talked about.

Meanwhile, here’s the writing run-down for April:

A new tie-in project! I signed the contract for this in late February, and after much twisting and turning and pulling and pushing and squeezing and whatever else sounds cool here, I delivered the outline for this to my editor on May 1st. It’s a big ‘un, requiring collaboration not just with the editor but also other writers with whom I’ll be working in tandem. This likely will be the thing that keeps me busy throughout the latter months of the year, as I don’t anticipate starting in on the actual manuscript until after the summer. More info as I’m allowed to share.

Another new tie-in project – This one unexpectedly came about late in March and a good part of April was spent coordinating with my editor as well as my collaborator on this book. We delivered an outline last week and at present we’re waiting for feedback from her and – ultimately – the IP owner before we can get going with the actual writing. This is a tie-in for a property with which I’ve not previously worked and neither is it a novel.  I don’t know when I’ll be able to offer much in the way of information or details, but I suspect it won’t be until we’re much closer to the release of the property’s latest installment, which is a ways off. I’ll let you know. 🙂

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. The book was published on April 6th and so far the early reviews have all been positive.

Agents of Influence – A new Star Trek original series novel. I’ve taken it as far as I can at this point, including helping out with a pronunciation guide for the audiobook edition read by Robert Petkoff, who’s brought his voice to several Star Trek audios these past few years. Despite everything, the novel is still set for publication on or about June 9th.  Oh, and did I mention we also have a cover? 

Other stuff in the pipeline:

More Fun with Star Trek AdventuresBack in October, I turned in a few revisions for the material I wrote for the first of two upcoming reference books. I finished edits on content for the first book back in January, and completed writing material for the second book back in March. Both of these are tentatively scheduled for publication at different points in late 2020 (or perhaps early 2021, depending on COVID-19 impacts), but I don’t have any firm dates just yet. Neither book has been formally announced yet, either, so don’t tell anyone I mentioned this to you, okay?

Short Story for Pangaea III, an Upcoming Science Fiction Anthology – Regular followers know that Kevin and I contributed a story to the first Pangaea anthology, and Kevin went solo for a story included in its sequel, Pangaea II: SuperContinent Boogalo (I may have that title wrong). The formula’s a bit different this time, as instead of us all writing separate tales we all will be feeding a larger narrative in something resembling a round-robin format…but with extra chaos sprinkled in for flavor. I helped a bit back in February with our portions, but Kevin was the one who took point on this one. We delivered it shortly after that and now we’re waiting to get editorial feedback. More details to come!

Short Story for Upcoming Horror Anthology – A story Kevin and I wrote for It Came from the Multiplex: 80s Midnight Chillers. To be published by Hex Publishers, this will be a celebration of ghost and horror stories as inspired by 1980s cheezy, low-budget B-movie awesomeness. The concept, which we ended up calling, “Helluloid,” sounded so insanely fun Kevin and I could not say no when we were invited to contribute. Didja see it? The book is scheduled for publication in September.

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. We originally were told the project’s official start date has been pushed to later in the spring, but COVID-19 has impacted this one’s timetable. I likely won’t the full extent of that for a while, yet. We’re looking forward to locking things down and working with the client to fine-tune what they want. Until a formal announcement is made the only thing I can say is that this is a slice of pure fanboy fun. Stay tuned!

Superhero Novella Project – As announced back on February 21st of last year, 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. I suspect we may ramp up talks about this later in the summer, as the book’s publication is currently set for sometime in 2021. More details will be forthcoming as appropriate.

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’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!).

And with that? I guess it’s gotta be May.

Lay it on me.

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