The Ultimate Compliment

I am not a football fan.

Not to say that I hate it. It just does nothing for me. And yet, during this year’s Super Bowl, I went to my father’s bar to watch the Big Game. I was told there would be hot wings.

There were no hot wings.

While I lamented the lack of hot wings, a very tall blond woman dashed up to me. Her face was full of an intense emotion that I couldn’t identify in the gloom of the bar.

I thought she wanted to kick my ass or at least make me step aside because I was in the way somehow.

“Are you the author?” she asked.

I told her, yes, I was the author. She must have heard of me because my dad, a lover of gritty crime novels, won’t shut up about me.

Instead of challenging me to a duel, she hugged me. She told me she had read my book and it was just what she needed during a really hard time in her life recently. She teared up. I teared up. There were more hugs.

After the game, all I could think of was that I need to finish the sequel. If there were any doubts in my mind about the series, or writing in general, they’re gone now.

That encounter meant a lot to me and got me fired up about writing again. I just want to take time out and ask you, if you enjoyed a book, to take time out to contact the author. Tell them how it made you feel. Maybe they’ll read it. Maybe they won’t. But there’s a chance you’ll make their day and light a fire in their heart.

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Rachael Has a Patreon Page

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Patreon isn’t exactly new, but I’ll lay it out and explain it anyway.

Patreon is a subscription-based service, allowing fans and supporters to pledge a monthly amount of money. Artists, writers, designers, community leaders, and all sorts of creative and inspiring folks have set up their own pages, asking for donations. Not demanding. Not begging. Just asking for a little donation in return for some goodies.

Maybe it’s a sketch made available only to patrons of a certain comic artist. Maybe it’s a sneak peek at an early, unedited chapter of an upcoming book. Maybe your name could be featured in the end credits of a Youtube video. Patreon is a cool way for fans to directly support and interact with the creators they follow.

So, of course, I was slow to hop aboard until I saw one of my favorite authors had her own Patreon page. N.K. Jemisin is the incredible author of the Broken Earth trilogy, as well as the newly-released short story collection When is Black Future Month? Her speculative fiction is both powerful and touching.

I’m totally a fan, okay? Anyway, I figure if she can do it, so can I.

For $1 a month, you’ll receive a thank-you note and a monthly picture of my animals. They are very soft and good. This claim is backed by Science©. You won’t be disappointed.

For $2 a month, you’ll get everything with the first tier along with a Book of the Month recommendation and access to a Patron-only discussion about them on Discord. We might end up talking about video games though.

For $5 a month, you’ll receive everything listed above and also get monthly sneak peeks at unedited chapters or short stories. You’re not allowed to laugh, kthx.

And for $10 a month, you’ll get everything listed above, and I’ll send you a signed copy of the books that are published while you are a Patron.

When I receive $100 a month, I’ll start work on the Vessels audiobook. Finally, the world can know the official pronunciation of ‘khemu’. Or ‘Ios’. Or ‘Mwarthes’. Dang, I got a lot of funny words in my book.

Ahem.

Your pledge would not only help me create great content but also enable me to deliver it in a new form.

Thanks again!

How to Write Multiple Genres as an Author

Was there not a question mark in the title? Crap. There should have been. I'll fix it in post.

I've self-published a couple of fantasy books. Vessels and its prequel What the River Brought. Both are part of the Dusk Eternal series, which I plan on finishing. I've got two more books planned in that weird pseudo-Egyptian world but none of them is my next project.

I love fantasy. From Middle-Earth and Westeros, to Hyboria and Pern, all those imaginary worlds sustain my soul. Even more than that, I love when the setting isn't based on a European medieval period or anything remotely close to it (which is why I'm loving N K Jemisin right now). But even if it isn't, I'll give the book a try. I'm amazed by all these writers who write book after book about completely made-up worlds and I want to stand among them one day.

But I can't help but wonder...do those well-established fantasy authors ever want to write in a different genre? Because I sure do. My next project is going to be...what? Modern day surreal horror? Absurdist humor? A collection of overly-long descriptions of drinks popular in the 70's?

                           Pictured: The newest novel from Rachael Dunn.

                           Pictured: The newest novel from Rachael Dunn.

I'll settle for horror/humor even though that sounds like the nichiest niche if there ever was one. But now I'm thinking that I have to redesign my website, change my author name, dye my hair, take up a drug habit, and commit some non-violent crimes before I can really change my genre.

But then again, I'm not well-known. Maybe I can do whatever the hell I want, write about whatever I like, and just not worry for once. Maybe I'll be Rachael Dunn for fantasy and R.L. Dunn for my horror.

I"ll be sure to wear big sunglasses and not smile in my author pic. Ooh, and have it be black and white. In a graveyard.

Because at the end of the day, I'm only going to be satisfied writing about what I want. And hey, some of the best cereals come in two flavors in one box.

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