Tag Archives: Stephen Simmons

An update and a few thoughts

The good news first.  Our new storefront is up and functioning wonderfully.  Everyone at NRP has worked hard to make the change-over and to make sure all our customers still have access to the books and short stories they purchased through the old storefront.  If you haven’t received and e-mail from us saying either a new account has been created or giving you a coupon code for downloads, please let us know at info-at-nakedreader-dot-com (you know what to do to make it into a real email addy).

The second bit of good news is that we have three new titles up and more on the way.  Firefight by Thomas A. Easton is a digital reprint of the novel, the first time it has been available as an e-book.  Part techno-thriller and part sci-fi, it’s a fun and thought-provoking tale of what can happen if those who are worried about what humans are doing to our planet go too far.

Family Obligations by Stephen Simmons takes us on a quest for vengeance that isn’t quite what it seems.  Bump in the Night is a digital reprint of a short story I wrote that appeared in the anthology Better Off Undead. These titles are now available through our storefront and will soon be available through Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other e-stores.

As I said, we have other titles coming out this month as well.  Included is Quicksand by C. S. Laurel, the second book in the Quick Mysteries series.  The first book, B. Quick, is currently free not only on our site, but also on Amazon, iTunes and most other major outlets.  Other titles will include, among others, Cat’s Paw by Robert A. Hoyt and For Conspicuous Valor by Darwin A. Garrison.  So keep checking back for announcements about these titles and others.

Now for those few thoughts I threatened — er, promised.  Not too long ago I blogged about the need for authors to follow submission guidelines when sending something to anyone, be that person an agent or a publisher.  I know we’ve all heard the horror stories about some of the “interesting” submissions editors and agents received when all submissions had to be mailed in.  Back then, it wasn’t all that uncommon for submissions to come in brightly colored envelopes with things like “attacked by aliens”, “dictated by my dead grandmother” written on them.  The pages themselves might be bright pink if the submission was a romance novel or blood red, even black, if horror.  Fonts, omg, fonts were in all different shapes and sizes.  Glitter might fall out of the envelope as the editor pulled out the perfumed pages.  Is it any wonder most publishers and agents have gone to electronic submissions?

Yes, it is environmentally better to go the electronic route.  It’s also easier and cheaper for all involved.  But — and this is a big BUT — that doesn’t mean guidelines are only to be looked at and then the author gets to decide if he is going to follow them.

Look, guidelines are there for a reason.  They are to make it as easy as possible for the agent or editor to read the story.  You want them to focus on content, not on format.  That won’t happen if you submit your novel or short story in something that isn’t what they ask for.  Their first impression is not going to be a good one.  I promise you, the first thought they’ll have isn’t “Wow, what a great idea!”  It’s going to be, “Well, here’s another one who couldn’t be bothered to read the guidelines.”  Is that the way you want to start out what you hope will be a profitable relationship for all involved?

A couple of commenters on the original post pointed out that they don’t write in standard manuscript format.  They change it after they finish and are ready to submit.  I have absolutely no problem with that because, depending on what machine I’m using at the time — I write on a laptop, a desktop, a netbook and a tablet depending on the when and where I’m writing — neither do I.  But, like those commenters, I make sure I have the piece formatted in the way requested by the publisher before sending it off.

Someone else made the point that we, as agents and editors, ought to be glad when we get a submission by an author who uses different formats because it means they are more apt to find mistakes before sending it off and, by inference, that we’d see more mistakes upon first reading.  Yep, you guessed it, my head sort of exploded then.  The first time an editor or agent reads a submission, it isn’t to see how many mistakes are present.  We aren’t editing then.  We are interested solely in determining if the submission is something we want to represent or publish.  Nothing more and nothing less.  When we see a submission where it is obvious the author didn’t try to meet our guidelines, we have to ask if this is an author we want to work with.  If they can’t be concerned to do as we ask before we have a working relationship, does this bode well for what will happen after there is such a relationship?  Will it be worth the potential headaches?

So, do yourself a favor.  Read the guidelines.  Do your best to follow them.  Believe it or not, there are some agents and editors — not us — who use software that will toss out your submissions if you don’t follow those guidelines.  That includes making sure you include the appropriate information in the subject line of your email and the information you include in the body of the email.  Don’t start off with one or two strikes against you before the editor has read the first page of your submission.

 

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Wow, We’re Almost One Year Old!

Later this month, NRP will celebrate it’s first anniversary.  Well, to be honest, it will be our first anniversary of going live.  We’d been in the planning stage for much longer.  But we’re excited and we’re hoping you are as well.  To help celebrate our birthday, we’ll be giving you, our readers, gifts so keep checking back for more details.  For now, I can tell you that we’ll be giving away some of our titles as well as discounting others.  There may be a contest or two for free copies of upcoming titles or for red-shirting in others.  Check back later this week and next for all the details.

I’m also pleased to announce that we will be publishing 12 more short stories by the wonderful Dave Freer.  We’ll be bringing out two short stories a month, starting in September.  The first will appear the week of September 5th, so mark your calendars.

Our titles this month run the gamut from science fiction to mystery to fantasy to the wildly imaginative worlds that exist in Robert A. Hoyt’s brain.  We have the first digital edition of Firefight, a novel by Thomas Easton first published in 1993.  Quicksand is the second novel in the Quick mystery series by C. S. Laurel.  Family Obligations is a fantasy short story by Stephen Simmons.  Cat’s Paw by Robert A. Hoyt is as funny as it satiric in this tale of a reluctant hero’s attempt to save the world.

Look for all of these titles the middle of the month.

And don’t forget to check back to see what sorts of surprises we have in store for you to celebrate our first anniversary.

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New Schedule Announced

Let me start out by once again thanking everyone who submitted either short stories or novels to us in November.  We received quite a few submissions and it was difficult to choose exactly which ones to sign.  However, our editorial board was up to the task and contracts have been sent out and returned.  Now I have the pleasure of announcing the schedule for the first quarter of 2011 as well as some of the titles we will be publishing later this year.

January

The e-arc for Dave Freer’s YA novella, Without A Trace, is already available for purchase.

A Deeper Silence, a collection of short stories by Charles Edgar Quinn.

Legion, a short story by Dave Freer and Kate Paulk.

February

Lawyers of Mars by Pam Uphoff.

Short story collection by Dan Hoyt, title to be announced later.

Death of a Musketeer by Sarah D’Almeida.  This is the first of the Musketeer Mysteries and has never appeared in digital format.  We are very pleased to be able to add this title to our catalog and to announce that we will be offering later this year The Musketeer’s Confessor, a new book in the series.

We will also offer an as yet to be determined short story or two this month.

March

Impaler by Kate Paulk.  A mix of alternate history, historical mystery and a new take on the Dracula myth.  This is the follow-up novel to Kate’s novella, Born in Blood.

Hunter’s Moon by Ellie Ferguson is a mix of urban fantasy and romance.

Blood Ransom, a short story collection by Sarah A. Hoyt.

Last, but certainly not least, we will be offering our own irreverent take on St. Patrick’s Day, much in the vein of Robert Hoyt’s Christmas Campaign.

April

The Great Flying Saucer Conspiracy by Tom Easton.  Tom will be doing a guest blog for us later this month complete with information about the book and a giveaway.

An as yet to be titled short story collection by Dave Freer.

Want, a short story by Jay Caselberg that came to us during our November submission period.

Skipping Stones, a short story by Darwin Garrison that also came to us during the November submission period.

May

Revocare, a short story by Leslie Fish that was submitted to us during November.

Here There Be Faeries, a short story by Stephen Simmons that came to us also during the November submission period.

There will be at least one novel added to the lineup.  We’ll announce which title as soon as possible.

Summer/Fall/Winter

Among the titles we’ll be offering the second half of the year are the following:

The Musketeer’s Confessor by Sarah D’Almeida.  This is a new title in the Musketeers Mysteries and we are very excited to be able to offer it to you.

Firefight by Tom Easton will be published in August.

Tiltamouse is Hunger, a YA novella by Sarah A. Hoyt.

Vengeance Mine, a mystery by Jenny Schall that is also a product of the November submission period.

ConVent by Kate Paulk.

Robert A. Hoyt’s holiday collection which includes Christmas Campaign.

These are just a few of the titles we’ll be bringing you over the next year.  As new titles are added, we’ll let you know.

 

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