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The Weird Times

Mark Del Franco

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Being a trail of lies and deceit with occasional amusing moments....

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May 6th, 2014

Hi folks!

Just a reminder that a revised copyedit of WHIRLWIND went up at the end of February. If you purchased the kindle ebook before then, go to your "manage your content and devices" link, in the left hand column click "automatic book updates," then click "turn on." This will swap out the old version for the new.1

I apologize for the error-filled version that was initially uploaded. If you still find errors, please let me know!

enjoy!

March 28th, 2014

Hi all!

I had great response to the Goodreads book giveaway for WHIRLWIND! Thank you all for participating.

Two winners were pulled and I will be mailing their books out today or tomorrow.

Again, thanks to all. And if you read the book and are so inclined, please do consider posting a review on either Goodreads or Amazon!

February 12th, 2014

New Book Release!
WHIRLWIND (2014)

My first young adult novel is available on Amazon right now as an ebook! The print will be available shortly.

I tend to think of it as my "accidental" novel. I'm working on another book (sorta of adult urban fantasy) and the main character of WHIRLWIND, Arden Lewis, started nagging at me. In the down time from the other book, I would jot down notes and, well, the writing started. The next thing I knew, I had a book finished.

WHIRLWIND sat on my laptop for several months. I didn't think about it much. A couple of young adults in my life were looking for something to read, so I passed it along. The feedback was great, so I sent it to a few more people. After much consideration, I decided it wasn't going to get read if I just left on my laptop. So, here it is.

Here's the link to my main website: www.markdelfranco.com . There's a brief decision (also below), as well as a free first chapter. If you want to skip all that and go right to Amazon, well, here you go! Please pass the word, share/like/retweet on Facebook and Twitter @mdelf. Word of mouth will be the way to make the book a success. Thanks!




Arden Lewis has a secret.



When Arden discovers she can control the weather, she leaves her secluded family farm to live in Everglen among her own kind--Paragons who can control the elements with their minds and bodies.



Arden soon learns that being a Paragon means being a target for darker forces that want to exploit her Talent--or destroy it. She must navigate the turmoil of high school and the uncertainty of her first crush, all while keeping her Talent from prying eyes.



She needs to keep secrets in order to survive.



But secrets are built on lies, and when secrecy becomes paramount, the lies become dangerous. No matter whom she trusts, no matter how hard she tries to control her Talent, Arden's life begins to spiral out of control--with fatal consequences.

April 23rd, 2012

On Endings...

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UNDONE DEEDS came out in February 2012. Contrary to conventional wisdom, I did not blog like crazy promoting the book. The reason I didn’t was because, as I saw almost the moment the book was published, people were asking if it was the last in the series. I didn’t know how to go about answering this question since I didn’t know myself if the series was ending.

Some people who have read UNDONE DEEDS will be surprised at that. Some people who have read UNDONE DEEDS will not be surprised at that. See what I did there?

First, let me make it official: UNDONE DEEDS is the last book in the series.(and, I should add, Ace has decided not to continue the Laura Blackstone series either).

As it stands, the series tells the Connor Grey story I wanted to tell. I certainly can continue with the Convergent World. There are plenty still to be told, but this particular story had its arc.

But what of Connor?

I told a (series) story with a specific ending in mind from the beginning. The scene on the beach at the end? It’s one of the very first scenes I envisioned---six books and over a decade ago. In the interest of fair play, I will answer questions—but I want to avoid explaining anything I think is explained in the books, or at least deducible.

NOTE: Inherently, I think comments will contain SPOILERS, particular the end. If you haven’t read UNDONE DEEDS, I do suggest you avoid this thread.

January 16th, 2012

(no subject)

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The next Connor Grey is coming out January 31, 2012---two weeks away! As usual with these things, a few copies are already popping up here and there, which always fascinates me. How do people get them before I do???

Here’s the back copy from the book:

Connor Grey, a druid consultant for the Boston P.D., usually helps the cops solve their “strange” cases, but now he’s the suspect in the midst of one. Wrongly accused of a terrorist act that rocked the city to its core, Connor evades arrest by going underground, where rumors of war are roiling. A final confrontation between the Celtic and Teutonic fey looks inevitable—with Boston as the battlefield.

Undercover agents are turning up dead in the Weird—their murders brushed aside and ignored—and Connor exposes a citywide conspiracy of silence that seems linked to the inexorable march to war. As he digs deeper into the mysterious deaths, Connor draws closer to the secrets of a past he has sought for so long. And as friends and allies abandon him one by one, Connor discovers that in the clash between light and dark, and in the face of a cataclysm of epic proportions, he might have to make the ultimate sacrifice to save the world.



UNDONE DEEDS is the sixth book in the series. I’m pretty excited about it because Answers Will Be Revealed. This book is the culmination of the series arc I’ve been working on from the beginning. I think most of the major questions people have had are answered here, maybe not in the way some people hoped, and, of course, a few things are left mysterious. But for the most part, this has been the story I wanted to tell.

Which is not to say the world of Connor Grey is finished. I think readers know I made the Convergent World a pretty big place with a huge cast of characters. I’ve told only one person’s story. Will there be more? *shrug* That’s up to Ace Books thinks about where I want to take things next.

And, of course, you guys. One of the greatest pleasures of writing is sharing the world you create. I’ve been honored and flattered and humbled by reader reaction so far. I hope I don’t disappoint you all.

Here’s the link to the website to read more about UNDONE DEEDS

January 6th, 2012

The title says it all, folks! Check out my website for a free first chapter and links to preorder.

I'll be blogging a bit more about it soon. Right now I have to remember all my passwords to my blog and website panels. Argh.

oh, and Happy New Year!

October 31st, 2011

As some might have noticed, things have been pretty quiet from me here and on Facebook. A lot of that had to do with summer---I just spent more time outside. Some of it was about having nothing to say . Some was about privacy control. And a smidge was about exhaustion.

When I finished up UNDONE DEEDS, the next Connor Grey novel, I realized it was the first time in five years that I did not have a delivery deadline during the summer (UNDONE DEEDS was delivered in May). Now, I am not going to claim that in years past I spent sunny days locked away in a dim attic toiling over my work, but, as has been said before, when you’re a writer, you are always writing even when you’re not in front of the laptop. That’s actually kind of cool and fun. When you layer on a deadline—which sets all sorts of things in motion at the publisher—a little stress and pressure creeps in. That’s not so fun. So the idea that I could go to the beach without guilt or hang out an entire weekend without writing or just DO stuff was suddenly very appealing. So I did.

Around the same time, Facebook did one of those ‘gee whiz, here’s a new fangled interface/new feature added’ thing. Again. Now, I’m not anti-redesign, but with Facebook, it’s never just about redesign. It’s about controlling information—my information—and how it goes out in the world. I did what I always do: went through all the settings, limiting this, blocking that, opting out of stuff. It annoyed me because it wasn’t the first time I had had to do it—or the second or third.

I started thinking about the role social media plays in my life (or should). I had long ago fallen away from blogging on LiveJournal, content to let Facebook be my default internet experience (While I am technically on Twitter, I don’t think I’ve logged in since I signed up). FB was easier than blogging—I didn’t feel obligated to come up with a few hundred words to post. But as I started thinking about how I was using FB and what I was posting, I, um, got bored.

I’ve always said, when you get to the point where you realize you are bored with yourself, it means you’ve been boring everyone else for two weeks longer. So, I stopped posting. And a funny thing happened. I didn’t miss it. Don’t get me wrong. I still went on FB Every Single Day. Other people still had interesting things to say, but I didn’t feel compelled to add anything that would be interesting in 140 characters or less.

So now what? I dunno. I think I’ll likely blog more and fb less (actually, blog and link to it from fb—two birds, one internet). I will confess: I do not like Facebook. I don’t like its philosophy and I don’t like it’s layout. I don’t mean that as an anti-Facebook rant. The site has like a bazillion users. It can’t be the epitome of success for all of them, and that’s okay. For me, tho, it lacks appeal on a number of levels. I just have to figure out how to use it without being annoyed.

Anyway, hi!

April 18th, 2011

A few writers have been getting into a tangle about how writers should
generate income in this new fluid world of publishing. It started with
a quasi-gentlemanly spat between David Hewson and Cory Doctorow. Hewson
launched with this blog post to which Doctorow took to Twitter here to
respond. Others chimed in--most defending Doctorow. I have to admit,
the conversations and comments first baffled me, occasionally irritated
me and finally just saddened me when I realized what the conversation
was really about: most writers get paid crap.

Hewson and Doctorow discussing what path to success works best is a bit
like Bruce Springsteen and Lady Gaga arguing over the way to run a
music career. One cultivated his audience over time. The author made a
nice big splash. They both ended up behind desks with enough to live
off their writing. Lost in their discussion is that both their
positions beg the question of publishing success: "I am successful
because I am successful." That's not a luxury 90% of writers can argue
from.

Let me address this whole "multi-stream income" issue. It sounds hip
and sexy and new. It speaks to innovation and bold ventures. It's none
of those things. It is, quite frankly, a tarted-up way of saying you
freelance or have a day job and write on the side. That's it. Nothing
new. It's new economy jargon applied to the same old realities.

Some will say I’m missing the point of the discussion, that juggling
multiple jobs is a necessity if you want to write. But, I would posit
that isn’t the real point. The point is writing isn’t a live-on career
for most people--not because they don't want it to be, but because it
simply doesn't pay enough. It hasn’t since its inception as a career
choice and all this “multi-stream” talk is not about a writing career
at all. It’s about paying the bills any way you can. If, in fact, you
have to work other jobs and those other jobs make up more than half
your income, you do not have a writing career. You have a vocation that
occasionally pays you some money to redo your kitchen.

Calling it "multi-stream income" may sound sophisticated, but I can't
help but feel it's snake-oil talk. You're not struggling to make ends
meet because you work in an exploitative industry that doesn't value
its main source of material--you're multi-streaming your income!
Please, spare me the smoke and mirrors.
A few writers have been getting into a tangle about how writers should generate income in this new fluid world of publishing. It started with a quasi-gentlemanly spat between David Hewson and Cory Doctorow. Hewson launched with this blog post to which Doctorow took to Twitter here to respond. Others chimed in--most defending Doctorow. I have to admit, the conversations and comments first baffled me, occasionally irritated me and finally just saddened me when I realized what the conversation was really about: most writers get paid crap.

Hewson and Doctorow discussing what path to success works best is a bit like Bruce Springsteen and Lady Gaga arguing over the way to run a music career. One cultivated his audience over time. The other made a nice big splash. They both ended up behind desks with enough to live off their writing. Lost in their discussion is that both their positions beg the question of publishing success: "I am successful because I am successful." That's not a luxury 90% of writers can argue from.

Let me address this whole "multi-stream income" issue. It sounds hip and sexy and new. It speaks to innovation and bold ventures. It's none of those things. It is, quite frankly, a tarted-up way of saying you freelance or have a day job and write on the side. That's it. Nothing new. It's new economy jargon applied to the same old realities.

Some will say I’m missing the point of the discussion, that juggling multiple jobs is a necessity if you want to write. But, I would posit that isn’t the real point. The point is writing isn’t a live-on career for most people--not because they don't want it to be, but because it simply doesn't pay enough. It hasn’t since its inception as a career choice and all this “multi-stream” talk is not about a writing career at all. It’s about paying the bills any way you can. If, in fact, you have to work other jobs and those other jobs make up more than half your income, you do not have a writing career. You have a vocation that occasionally pays you some money to redo your kitchen.

Calling it "multi-stream income" may sound sophisticated, but I can't help but feel it's snake-oil talk. You're not struggling to make ends meet because you work in an exploitative industry that doesn't value its main source of material--you're multi-streaming your income! Please, spare me the smoke and mirrors.

April 11th, 2011

Book Giveaways!

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Hi Everyone,

In anticipation of the publication of UNCERTAIN ALLIES on April 28, I am running book giveaways via a newsletter.

This week's giveaway is for two separate drawings: I will be giving away two copies each of UNSHAPELY THINGS and UNQUIET DREAMS, the first two books in the Connor Grey series! Signing up for the newsletter automatically enters you in the drawing and I will notify people here of the winners.

Here's the link to the newsletter email form. That link will bring you to my website, so check out the First Chapter samples while you are there!

Also, I would appreciate those with Facebook accounts to Like my Fan Page. I post notice there when the blog is updated, as well as any current news.

More drawings will be happening in the next couple of weeks! Sign up now and you are automatically entered in those, too!

See  you....

Mark
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