Sunday, March 31, 2013

What's Next?

Okay, so in the last couple of months, I have released Shadows of Tockland (a crazy post-apocalyptic novel), Bloodstone (first volume of an epic fantasy duology) and A Whisper in the Void (the concluding volume of the epic fantasy duology). The first two are already available as e-books all over the place, so commence to reading, if you haven't already.

What's next? Next I will be polishing up Mary of Starlight, so I can send it off to the publisher. I have already worked through the first five chapters, and I was pleasantly surprised at how little editing needed to be done. It made it sort of fun to read, which is nice. I can't wait for people to see how epic this series gets. Mary of the Aether is a fairly small story. It's a few characters in a tiny town with a little bit of magic. The second volume, Mary of Shadows, widens the scale considerably. The third volume goes nuts.

There will be one more volume in the series. It doesn't have a title yet, though I know what will happen therein. It will conclude in majestic fashion. Oh, people, if only you knew. But I won't be writing the fourth volume quite yet. I think the next book after polishing Mary of Starlight will be a sequel to Shadows of Tockland. I do have a title for that one. It will be called A Prince of Tockland, and it will introduce that dreaded creature, the mime.

So there you go. Those are the current and future writing plans of Jeffrey Aaron Miller.

Friday, March 29, 2013

A Whisper in the Void - Deep Water: Book Two

Well, the first half of the Deep Water duology is out. Bloodstone is currently appearing in various online markets such as Amazon and Barnes & Noble and Kobo. If you haven't checked it out, let me remind you that it's only $2.99. Folks, that's less than the Big Mac combo at McDonald's. Think of it! Also, it won't hasten the hardening of your arteries. Awesome!

Anywho, the second volume (and, therefore, the conclusion) of the duology is on its way. It is called A Whisper in the Void, and it should be available in a couple of weeks, so now is the best time to read the first book. Why is it called A Whisper in the Void, you ask? Because, ladies and gentlemen, at some point in the book, something incredibly significant is whispered in a void. That's why. What sort of a void? Well, that remains to be seen, but, really, how many different kinds of voids are there?

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Bloodstone - Deep Water: Book One

The next e-book is out!

It's available at Amazon and soon to be available in many more places. That means my bibliography is growing on Amazon, which is cool. Click on the picture above to head over there and check out my author page.

There is an excerpt of the first couple of chapters up at Amazon, if you want a sampling. I'll get it up at Goodreads soon, as well. Now, as to the cover image, what does it mean? Well, it is a mountain, as you can see, and some people, on first glance, assume it is a volcano. However, look carefully and note that the smoke is coming from behind the mountain. And it is not thick enough to be your typical volcanic cloud. No, this is the black smoke of something burning, something rather large, it would seem. What could it be? Well, read the book to find out.

This story has got magic, monsters, tyrants, battles, a bit o' romance perhaps, an unfolding mystery, and a pervasive and ominous tension that builds and builds. And that's my sales pitch, if you'll indulge me a little bit. Now, go read it. It's only $2.99, people!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Deep Water: Bloodstone

Deep Water is a duology. That's like a trilogy with one less book. The first volume is called Bloodstone, and the e-book should be available in the next week or two. The second volume is called A Whisper in the Void, and it will be another month or so before that one comes out.

Anyway, here is the cover design for Bloodstone:

And here is the book's blurb:

A shared dream has begun to trouble the people of Tesaria, a dream of helpless drowning, of suffering in some watery place. The loremasters say the dream is a bad omen, but no one really knows its origin or its meaning.

In the midst of this uncertainty, the Elite Guard of King Helathius begin rampaging through the mountain villages, seeking a stolen artifact. After a tragic encounter, a young man and woman--Jeren, son of a village patriarch, and Aleas, a merchant's daughter--find themselves on a desperate flight for their lives into the lowlands, seeking a safe place to hide.

But there is nowhere to run, for a dreadful power is at work in the heart of the nation, and no one can hide from the time of cataclysm that approaches.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

A Better Map

Here's a better look at the map Lisa helped me make for Bloodstone. She was not completely satisfied with the lettering, but I told her I wanted something that looked hand drawn, the kind of map you would expect to find in a small village, rather than something a professional cartographer would make. That means, of course, that things are not necessarily drawn to scale. Anyway, here it is:

Click to embiggen it, and look for Bloodstone in a couple of weeks. In the meantime, commence to read about Cakey the Clown and his post-apolyptic adventures! Quickly, before I start work on the sequel. It's HERE and HERE and HERE!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


Okay, let's talk about the next novel. In order to do that, I first need to give you a little history.

Way back in 1991, I successfully completed my first novel. It was intended to be the first of a trilogy, but it was terrible, just absolutely terrible. I don't even remember the title of the book, but it's in a box somewhere in a closet.

Despite it's awfulness, there was a glimmer of an idea in that book that stayed with me. In 2001, the year I got married, when Lisa and I were living in a tiny apartment called Colonial Arms in Fayetteville, I sat down to attempt another novel. I took that glimmer of an idea and developed it more fully and completed a novel called Deep Water. It was good enough for a publisher to hold onto the manuscript for eight months, but it never did get a contract offer. Deep Water is also sitting in a box in a closet somewhere.

That brings us to the present day. I always wanted to go back and rewrite Deep Water completely and make it work, so I finally did that back in 2012. However, it wound up being one enormous bloat of a book, so I turned it into a duology. Volume One is called Bloodstone. Volume Two is called A Whisper in the Void.

What is it about? It's a fantasy novel set in a magical kingdom called Tesaria. Here is the book's blurb to explain it:

A terrible artifact has been stolen from the king, and the Elite Guard rampage through the mountain villages, seeking the thief. After a tragic encounter, a young man and woman--Jeren, son of a village patriarch, and Aleas, a merchant's daughter--find themselves on a desperate flight into the lowlands. But there is nowhere to run, for a dreadful power is at work in the heart of Tesaria, and a time of cataclysm has come.

There you go. Obviously, that doesn't tell you a whole lot about the actual plot. Thematically, this is a book that is very close to me. It started as a glimmer of an idea. It became something very intensely personal when I rewrote it in 2001, and it has only become more so with the latest (and final) version.

The first volume will be available within a couple of weeks. Look for it on this page right here, folks.

Monday, March 18, 2013

The Map of Tesaria

Okay, folks, the next book is just around the corner. This time it's one of those epic fantasy novels set in a magical land. You know the kind. But because I wrote it, it's also got a little bit of that Shadows of Tockland vibe that is particular to most of what I write (apocalyptic, troubling, strange, etc.).

Now, the cool thing is, because it's an epic fantasy, it's my first novel to have a map. Lisa (the wife) is helping me with that. Here is an iphone pic of the map she drew tonight based on my crude sketch

So there you go. We went for a sort of simplified, hand-drawn look. I think it turned out really good. I'll have a better pic of it once I get it scanned.

Look for Bloodstone sometime within the next few weeks, folks!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

The Magic Number

I was told today that three is the magic number. Yes, it is. It's the magic number. What am I talking about? I'm talking about online publishing. Apparently, the secret to actually making money at e-books and online books sales and indie sales and self publishing is to have multiple books available for sale. They feed off each other, as it were. People who find one of your books will tend to find the others. Multiple avenues are created to bring in readers. This special phenomenon begins around about three books.

Anyway, that is what I've been told. I now have two books for sale, but the magical thing is, I've got multiple books waiting in the wings. Besides the two books that I've already published, I've got 1) a second Mary book, 2) a third Mary book, 3) fantasy epic volume one, 4) fantasy epic volume two, 5) a stand alone fantasy novel. All of these are complete and raring to go. They only need cursory revisions for typos and such.

Now, the Mary books are going through Whiskey Creek Press, but that leaves three more books just waiting, waiting, deliciously waiting. Within the next couple of months, I will see them available as ebooks. Mark my precious words.

That means by this summer, I will have the following books available for sale:

Mary of the Aether
Mary of Shadows
Shadows of Tockland
Bloodstone (Deep Water: Book One)
A Whisper in the Void (Deep Water: Book Two)
Thorn and Shadow

The third Mary book will follow sometimes in 2014.

All these books represent the writing I've done in the last three years, and they will all soon be yours.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Opening Sentences

I have always been a little bit obsessed with opening sentences.

In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.

A classic, right? The opening sentence is the very first thing the author wants to tell you. In a story of 80,000 or 100,000 or 200,000 words, where does the author choose to begin? What detail, what story moment, what description do they select to get the ball rolling? Something thematic? Something evocative? Something disturbing? Something mysterious? Those first words set the tone for what follows. They also establish, to a certain extent, the expectations of the reader.

So let me share with you the opening sentences of some of my novels. Which one do you like the best?

Mary of the Aether
The lunatic in the long, gray cloak dashed out of the forest and ran right up onto the front yard, waving his arms in front of him like a child playing tag.

Mary of Shadows
It was the screaming that brought the party to an end, the screaming and the blood.

Shadows of Tockland
David saw him first, the old man with the scabs on his head lurching out of his seat on the front row, clapping his big, gnarled hands and shuffling toward the stage.

A man in a tattered leather jerkin and pale blue doublet writhed in the shadowy space between the rocks, clawing at his clothes.

Shadows of Tockland - Now Available

Shadows of Tockland, my new e-book, is now available on Kindle. In the coming weeks, it will eventually be available at many, many e-book retailers. For now, check out the Amazon page and download the free sample. Click the picture to go to the Amazon page.

In this post-apocalyptic adventure, David Morr runs away from an unhappy home to join a traveling circus, but he quickly discovers that life on the road is fraught with peril. A plague is sweeping across the land, turning the masses into mindless monsters, and David and his new friends soon find themselves fighting for their lives. All the while, the Empire of Tockland is on the rise, and all people must soon bend the knee to the ruthless tyrant, General Mattock.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Shadows of Tockland Cover

My second novel will be coming out within a week or so. Shadows of Tockland, formerly called The Klown Kroo, will be appearing as an e-book all over the place. Here is the shorter book blurb:

In this post-apocalyptic adventure, David Morr runs away from an unhappy home to join a traveling circus, but he quickly discovers that life on the road is fraught with peril. A plague is sweeping across the land, turning the masses into mindless monsters, and David and his new friends soon find themselves fighting for their lives. All the while, the Empire of Tockland is on the rise, and all people must soon bend the knee to the ruthless tyrant, General Mattock.

And here is the book cover design.

Look for it on Kindle, Nook, iBookstore, etc. in the coming weeks!

In the meantime, "like" the facebook page HERE

Friday, March 8, 2013

Tockland and Its Beautiful Shadows

Folks, I used the word "shadow" in too many book titles. Specifically: Shadows of Tockland, Thorn and Shadow, Mary of Shadows. In my estimation, that is one too many, so there will be a change. I intend to change Thorn and Shadow to something else. Not sure what. It was never the best title anyway, because it doesn't give any sense of what the book is about. A girl using a garden to attack an army. Well, what would you call such a book?

Oh well. Anyway, I am dipping my toe into the self-publication waters. It began with Shadows of Tockland. I got tired of reading the same feedback from publishers: "Well written but we aren't sure what to do with it." It seems to me that publishers tend to prefer something that fits more comfortably into a very specific genre, so they know how to publicize the thing. That makes sense, but I like the story of the Klown Kroo so much that I must find a way to let people read it.

If the self-publishing thing goes well, I've got a few other manuscripts that might go the same route. We shall see. I am prepping the manuscripts, just in case. There might be a flood of novels from Jeffrey Miller this year. Brace yourselves.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Don't Give Up on the Klowns and their Kroo

Ladies and gentlemen, the day will come when you will indeed be able to read about the Klown Kroo. I know, I've given you false hope in the past, but I can tell you now with certainty that it will be at least an e-book sometimes in the next few months. That's all I can say for now, but brace yourselves for it.

Now, for those of you who don't know, The Klown Kroo is a post-apocalyptic science fiction novel about a small travelling circus in Arkansas. A plague is sweeping across the world, and the Empire of Tockland is conquering one city after another. Our unfortunate clowns find themselves travelling deeper and deeper into the heart of darkness.

I am currently making a few minor edits and revisions to prepare the manuscript for publication. A couple of scenes got cut and the opening paragraphs got significantly rewritten, but the book is in pretty good shape. The biggest change, however, has to do with the title. I love the title The Klown Kroo, but I feel it will be off-putting for people who know nothing about Cakey and his story. So the new title of the novel is Shadows of Tockland.

Folks, it's got clowns, it's got gymnastics, it's got rampaging hordes, it's got Mountainburg, West Fork and Fayetteville, it's got stage fright, knife juggling, tyrants, fire, plate spinning, pratfalls, fights to the death, explosions, Cakey, sarcasm, harrowing moments, enormous mustaches, it's got a roustabout named Gooty. Seriously, what else could you possibly want?

Stay tuned for more publication details over the next few weeks, but know that it's coming.