The way-late March writing wrap-up.

And once again, I have to apologize for it being pretty uneventful in this space over the last month, but I promise it’s for good reasons. Honest!

It’s been busy on the work front, as you’ll hopefully see down below. My wife and I celebrated 32 years of marriage last month, and the kids are now on a headlong flight (no, not that one) toward the end of yet another school year.

In the meantime, while I wasn’t typing gibberish into this space, I was busy elsewhere. Here’s a peek into what some of that entailed, otherwise known as the March rundown….

Iron Man: Tony Stark Declassified – NOW IT CAN BE REVEALED! After nearly a year of remaining in the cone of silence, were were able to announce that we’ve written this forthcoming tome, the first in a series from BenBella Books with the full support and cooperation of Marvel Entertainment. After receiving the official blessing from Marvel earlier in the month, Kevin and I returned the copyedited manuscript back to BenBella on March 26th. The project is already deep into the graphic design phase at this point, and what we’ve seen of the in-process pages is pretty swank, if I do say so myself. As I write this, the book is currently slated for publication on November 30th and is already available for pre-order. You can check out all of that and more info by clicking here.

Unidentified Tie-in Project – Having had our initial meeting with our editors and the IP owners earlier in the month, Kevin and I delivered our initial attempt at an outline for them to review back on March 31st. We’re currently awaiting feedback from the IP owner, which we expect on or before April 17th. Mum’s the word for the moment, but more details (hopefully) sometime sooner rather than later.

Another Unidentified Tie-in Project – So, yeah. I had a talk with another editor about a whole other tie-in project, which along with the other one you just read about will be what I work on this spring and summer. I’m in the earliest stages of preparing an outline, which is due to said editor on April 10th. It’s obviously way too soon to talk about this one. More later as I’m allowed to share.

Short story for Double Trouble: An Anthology of Two-Fisted Team-UpsThis one came about rather unexpectedly, with me submitting what I admit was a very off-the-cuff pitch to the anthology’s editors, who in turn called my bluff and said they liked it. They’ve since assembled a pretty impressive roster of authors, all of whom have taken on the challenge of creating new stories featuring Public Domain comics and literature heroes of yesteryear as well as a few larger-than-life figures from actual history. The anthology is being produced by the International Association of Media Tie-In Writers and edited by redoubtable wielders of red pens Jonathan Maberry and Keith R.A. DeCandido. We had a successful crowdfunding effort on Kickstarter to support publishing the book, so now I actually have to write the thing! This is the thing I’m working on at the moment, with an eye toward delivering a manuscript on or about April 10th.

Short Story for The Four ???? of the Apocalypse – Despite a couple of bumps in the road, Kevin and I were successful in teaming up to spin our own take on The End of the World for an anthology to be published by editors Keith R.A. DeCandido and Wrenn Sims and their small-press publishing company, Whysper Wude. We received word that said editors are in the midst of – you know – editing the stories and getting comments and revision notes back to us. I believe there’s an aim to have it ready for publication this summer, possibly even for convention time in July, but don’t quote me. More info as it becomes available.

And Another Unidentified Tie-in Project – February seems to be an awesome month for being approached about new work. This one promises to be huge fun. This will (hopefully) be something of an ongoing situation with work coming in bursts, and I delivered my first batch of writing just this week (April 5th) and so I’m currently awaiting editorial feedback. I am very, very jazzed about working with this particular property, but no sly hints or clues on this one just yet. I’m hoping some sort of formal announcement will be coming soon.

Other stuff in the pipeline:

Star Trek: Discovery – Somewhere to Belong – I thought I was done with this one except for the waiting, but it turns out there were a few dangling proofreader comments to address. They were all minor and I returned them to my editor back on February 14th, the day after I received them. As I mentioned last month, we do in fact have a cover, and my one remaining major pre-publication duty should be working with the audiobook team to finalize a pronunciation guide to help the narrator and director with all the crazy alien names and other terminology I introduced this time around. Meanwhile, the book is available for pre-order from the usual haunts in trade paperback, eBook, and audiobook formats, and feel free to patronize your local independent bookseller if there’s one in your area. As things stand now, it’s slated for publication on Tuesday, May 30th. Stay tuned for updates.

Short Story for Unioverse: Stories of the Reconvergence – Another thing I mentioned in that other blog post. After returned our revised manuscript to our editor on January 3rd, we received word that all was good to go. We’ve been paid our final portion of the advance, and even seen a bit of art that will accompany our story (and it looks extra sweet, y’all. Like instant diabetes sweet). Otherwise? Now we wait. The anthology is currently scheduled for publication this summer from Hex Publishers, but no firm date has yet been announced. Stay tuned!

Possible future projects:

More fun with Star Trek Adventures After himming and hawing with STA project manager Jim Johnson off and on for several months leading into the fall, I’ve developed some notes for new material I hope to develop for the game. Unfortunately, this one’s going on the back burner, as All The New Things must take precedence, but hopefully I can throw some brain cells at this in and around the other work.

Science Fiction Novella Concept – Back in the summer of 2020, I was invited to participate in what has become a series of novellas all revolving around a Theme I Cannot Yet Publicly Identify. Though the editor already had a slate of entries through 2022, I’m still pondering something I might work for possible 2023 or (more likely) 2024 publication, but all of that is dependent on other items I’m juggling. At this point, I have a basic premise for a story that fits the theme, and after informing Madam Editor of my interest in playing within this particular sandbox, I quickly scribbled some notes and then set them aside, which is where they’ve been as I tend to other, more pressing matters. If schedules permit, I’ll see where I’m at with respect to The Other Things, and go from there.

More Tales from the Vogue Theater – One of the other things Kevin and I decided while writing “Helluoid” for It Came from the Multiplex was that the Vogue Theater, the setting for our 1980s horror tale, could also be the backdrop for other such stories set in different eras. We quickly came up with springboard ideas for stories set in the 1940s, 50s, and 60s, including a prequel of sorts for the original tale. Well, we entertained ourselves, at any rate. At this point, we have no idea what we might do with such a project, but for now just the idea of collaborating on a regular basis has taken hold after last year’s efforts, and we’re both eager to keep the ball rolling. Let’s see what happens!

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!).

Original SF Novel Concept – No, this is not the thing mentioned earlier that I played with last month. Instead, this is something I’ve been thinking about — off and on — for a loooooooooooooong time, but it always kept getting back-burnered because of everything else. I haven’t given up on it, but at the moment other things are demanding attention so this one stays on the warmer for a while longer.

Howdy, April. Gonna be a busy month, ain’t it?

Lay it on me.

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