Tag Archive for novella

Nikyu!

I finished my sparring requirements this evening and I am officially a Nikyu, or second-degree brown belt, in Shuri-ryu Karate.

Next week I’ll start learning a new kata called Bassai Dai, and I’ll be going through several more requirements for my next few stripes as I work toward Ikkyu, or first-degree brown belt. My goal is to finish that sometime next year.

After that comes the long slog toward black belt. That could take anywhere from two to ten years, depending how hard I continue to work. I’m in this for the long haul, though, so I don’t see it being a major problem in my karate development. I’m committed to the short end of that scale, with a personal goal of testing for black belt by sometime in 2013. If I’m asked to test earlier, that would be great, but I won’t let myself take longer than that. In the meantime I plan to start some Judo work, and finish some of the kobudo (weapons) requirements.

Tonight’s celebration is short-lived. I have writing to do.

Tonight’s soundtrack:

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

Spring Break: Not a Total Loss

Despite a somewhat disappointing Spring Break due to sick kids, a sick wife, and crummy weather, I managed to salvage my time off with some solid productivity.

There was last Sunday’s interview for starters, and shortly after I printed the script to the graphic novel script I’ve been working on and took the pencil to it (never was fond of the red pen). I slimmed it down by several pages, rewrote two scenes and added another, and I think the book will be stronger for it.

I have a novella contract to fulfill, and I finally figured out the right way to handle the plot and came up with a better villain. I finished the outline not long ago and fired it off to the publisher for review. Once it’s approved I’ll be able to start banging away at the prose.

I may not have been able to light up the grill, but I can’t complain about lighting up the keyboard. Sure, I’ve had more productive days, but with everything else that was happening this week, I did pretty good.

I also dropped by Borders today and browsed their art books. I found Andy Schmidt’s The Insider’s Guide To Creating Comics And Graphic Novels and remembered his interview with Indie Pulp, so I took it home. I think it’s a bit too late to learn to draw, but I’ve always wanted to get a better handle on the artists’ side of things while I write scripts, particularly layout and perspective. I already have Eisner’s Comics and Sequential Art, but hopefully Schmidt’s book will offer a broader take, offering some editorial insight in addition to tips for writers and artists. I learned quite a bit while working with Moonstone and Joe Bucco on Werewolves: Call of the Wild, but I’m still not as comfortable with comics as I am with prose.

Yet.

Tomorrow it’s back to the grind. Yippee. Nothing like a day job to get in the way of writing productivity!

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

2007: Year in Review

If someone were to ask me how this year went, my first reaction would be to call it a write-off. Then I got to thinking about it, and it actually hasn’t been so bad after all. Let’s look back, shall we?

I started the year by selling the German rights to Deadliest of the Species to publisher Otherworld Verlag. The book was pitched to retailers this month, and it will see publication early next year under the title Das Tödliche Geschlecht. I followed that up over the summer with another book sale which I’m still asked to keep under my hat.

Restore from Backup, my novella collaboration with JF Gonzalez, was released from Bad Moon Books. The hardcovers sold out on preorder, but you can still get copies of the trade paperback.

Moonstone Books published The Phantom Chronicles, a prose anthology of Phantom tales including my short story “The Servants of Set”. Moonstone is also the publisher of my comic book Werewolves: Call of the Wild.

I received word today that In Delirium II is shipping. This anthology includes a reprint of “Crazy for You” by myself and Brian Keene. This story previously appeared in Crime Spree. The book doesn’t appear to be listed on the Horror Mall yet, but I imagine it will be up for order soon.

Finally, I attended two comic cons — one large and one small — and did signings at two comic shops. I sold enough comics to pay for the trip at the small comic con, and I was well satisfied with the results of the large con and the signings. I also had fun, and probably picked up a few new fans to boot.

I’d like to have accomplished more, of course, but I don’t feel I should be complaining.

In personal news, I joined the Academy of Okinawan Karate in March and started studying Shuri-ryu, a style of karate. I climbed the ranks from white belt through yellow and to blue belt, and I’ve learned a lot of cool things. Between classes and home exercise, I’ve managed to lose 30 pounds and I feel better than I have in years. I’d have to say that’s the best accomplishment of the year. My class and workout schedule may have put a dent in my writing productivity, but I feel like my health improvements will keep me writing for years to come.

I joined an active Flickr photo group called 52 Weeks, where users post a picture a week for a year. I did fine for a while, but the last few months I’ve fallen way behind. I would like to have posted an honest week 1 and week 52 pic right now, but it’ll have to be off a little bit. You can, however, see my contributions so far right here.

Finally, I expanded my computing horizons by picking up a MacBook at work. I’m sure I’ll be talking more about it in the future (and I’m writing this post on it now), but this gets me closer to being a triple threat in desktop computing.

There are a few things I wish I’d accomplished or wish I’d done better, but hey, that’s what next year is for. Overall, I’m content to call 2007 a win.

Onward and upward.

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

Enough Tech! How 'Bout Writin'?

I’ve been blogging just about everything but my writing the last few weeks, so it’s high time I at least mentioned it before people start to forget that’s what I really want to do in the first place. Here’s a status report on several projects:

I’ve been thinking The Malice Engine may see life as a graphic novel rather than a prose novel. The content lends itself well to a visual presentation, and to be perfectly honest, it will probably see print a lot faster that way. I also think it would make a kickass animated feature if I can figure out a way to pitch it that way sometime. I’ve been sitting on a complete chapter-by-chapter outline for some time now.
The German edition of Deadliest of the Species is being shopped to German and Austrian book retailers this month. The publisher is seeing a lot of growth and is doing well with their current products, so I have a reason to feel good about my chances. I’m hoping to be of greater help to the promotion efforts once the book hits.

The top secret book still comes out next year. I still need to write a novella that will go on the back of the book, but it appears we’ve got an artist on board. I don’t even want to say who that is, but I will tell you that if you’ve been following the horror small press, you’ve seen his work.

The wrap-up to the story started with “To Fight With Monsters” in 4×4 and continued in To Travel Among Men in New Dark Voices is now officially two novellas. The first draft of the first novella, To Confront the Enemy, has been sent to two prereaders and one has given me good feedback already. The second novella, To Rise from the Ashes, is fully plotted out and just needs to be written. If all goes according to plan, the final published package will be the short story, the first novella, and these two novellas all combined to form the complete To Fight With Monsters saga.

There has been some interest expressed in Powerless, my next novel (unless you call To Fight With Monsters a novel). Not a solid sale, mind, but the potential is there. I’ve taken stock in what I have so far, and I have more finished than I thought. Some cleanup and a solid synopsis and I should be able to drop a pitch on a desk early in the new year.

Patrick Hoover, the artist of Wounded Gods, and I may be working on a different project soon, something more suited to his style. He’s got a few big events in his family life right now, but I hope we can tell you more about it in another month or two. I’ll be talking to a few other people about Wounded Gods in the near future.

Remember Muy Mal? Contrary to popular opinion, John, Weston and I do, too. Honest. We all just happened to get sidetracked by larger projects at the same time. In that respect, I guess we can call Muy Mal a success. The three of us are currently discussing a relaunch with an eye to complete the existing stories and wrap up the shebang. It’s patently obvious we can’t do this indefinitely as we originally planned, but we sure don’t want to leave everyone hanging. I’ll have more on this when we get it all nailed down.

I’m finishing up a zombie short story this week. It’s tentatively titled “My Husband the Zombie” and it will be submitted to a publisher I’ve been working with recently. I don’t want to say who until it’s officially accepted, but the good news is I was invited to the anthology and the plot has already been approved.

That’s the bulk of it. Not a major change from my previous updates, but I have moved forward some. There are a few other things in the works, but nothing near solid enough to be worth mentioning. Unfortunately I’m finding my keyboard time for December dwindling more and more, but January’s looking good.

More to come with the New Year.

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

Horror Web Reviews Restore from Backup

Horror Web’s HorrorWench has posted a good review of Restore from Backup, my collaborative novella with JF Gonzalez published by Bad Moon Books. She has kindly given us 4 1/2 stars out of 5. Among her comments:

Where this gets interesting in afterthought is the style. It’s an interesting collaboration. Having read both of them, I would never put them together–but it works very well, as they feed off each other’s strengths and dilute the weaknesses. Smooth writing that effortlessly makes all those tales you hear about collaboration seem silly and over-dramatized.

There you have it. If you’re a fan of either of us, buy this book!

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.