Well, it has been an emotional week for me. I’m not going to lie. The image here is the highlight: my book actually reached the Top 100 in the Kindle paid short stories list. I was one spot behind Mary Higgins Clark.
And just ahead of Spank Romance Stories.
Seeing that was a real treat. But better than that was the reaction from friends and family, who called and emailed and texted to let me know how they were finding the stories. It wasn’t all good; one sharp-eyed reader wanted to know how the man with no hands can caress a face. Pretty good question. I envisioned him doing so with one of the pulpy heads, but … I could’ve written that a little better.
Opinion is almost universal that the first story is a strange choice for the lead-off position. Fair enough. I did consider starting the collection with “Radiation,” but … I wanted to start with a shorter piece. I just thought it would be more fun and set the tone better.
In other terrible news, I also found out after I published this collection that Chuck Palahniuk’s new book Damned is going to feature a young girl who finds herself unexpectedly trapped in Hell. Yep. That’s right. That is a near-perfect description of the plot of “Esther’s Prayer,” a short story I wrote originally on this site in February under the title “At Night in the Cottage.” Guess I’ll have to take back some of those things I said about Stephen King’s Under the Dome being too similar in plot to The Simpsons movie. Also looked it up, and it looks like, even if I did publish first, he talked about his book and what it was about in 2010.
I’ve been scooped not only by a pro, but by one I am a fan of. Kind of a bummer.
Chuck P., if you read this, I promise not to be upset by this bump of hands in the popcorn bucket of story ideas if you aren’t. I swear, I did not hear that story from you; it’s based on a dream I had earlier this year. I expect when I read your book, I’ll find your version vastly different than mine, anyway. You say you went Judy Blume/Breakfast Club, and I think that’s pretty different from what I did. Maybe there’s room for two girl-in-Hell stories in this world. Here’s hoping.
A few notes on distribution: iTunes still has yet to publish the book (what gives, man?), no copies have yet sold on Barnes & Noble, and my Kindle version is unsearchable by category, which pretty much makes it unfindable. But I’m hoping these problems work themselves out eventually. I’m prepping a physical copy to be published in the coming weeks, so readers who prefer something they can hold need not be left behind.
But as far as those of you who are reading this now and have purchased it, I wanted to say a big THANK YOU! This week has been a far bigger success than I expected.
Thank you all for being awesome and reading my book!!!!
Feel free to comment away below and let me know what you liked and didn’t like. I want to hear it all!
(also, if you have read it already, review it on GoodReads.com or Amazon or wherever! say whatever you like, I don’t care; be honest! I love seeing reviews appear!)