Apparently there’s some kind of Treasure Hunt going on

Two people have requested a 140 word, or less, Sci-fi, story from me, because I’m a published author. I did it, because it looked like fun, and thought I’d post them here. Do not use these if you’re involved in this activity. I will find out, and my wrath will be, horrible threats of gastric activity.

So, here’s #1

“The Queen’s Pleasure”

-James Crawford, 2014

“Your Majesty, may I present the first cybernetic Elopus in the cosmos!”

The Queen of England, Misha Collins, was aghast at the creeping horror that undulated across the stage. “Doctor Rittenhaus-Benchley, why, in the name of all that’s holy, did you do such a thing to an innocent Elopus?”

The Doctor, titular head of the Royal Academy of Advanced Cybernetic Science, stared at his Majesty, and felt the creeping hand of doom crawling up his leg. He was surprised when she addressed the animal directly.

“You poor thing! We are so very sorry you were treated this way. We cannot make it right for you, but we can be sure that no such thing happens again.” She turned to him, “It is our pleasure that you be marooned on the penal asteroid for your crimes against sentient creatures.”

Doom had arrived, indeed.

#2

“A Gift from Jeebus”

-James Crawford

“Good Heavens! What is that thing? We have never seen anything of that sort before!” Misha, the Queen of England exclaimed, ruffling her feathers.

“Your Majesty, it is an Elopus, half elephant, half octopus.” The Prime Minster explained. “It is a gift from the High Oat of the planet Jeebus, apparently sourced from the royal stables.”

“Gracious me! What do the Jeebians use them for?”

“They ride them Mum. They ride them.”

“Do you hear that, Clive?” Queen Misha asked.

“Is it the bubbly tooting, M’Lady?”

“Indeed!”

“It is the call of the male Elopus, calling for a mate or a spin around the Buckingham Palace Royal Aquatic Gardens.” Clive enlightened the Queen.

“Blublubluhonk! Blublubluhonk! Blublubluhonk!”

“My Queen, now is a good time to take cover!”

“Whatever for, Clive?”

“The Elopus is angry, and will likely kill us all.”

BSAC got a 1-star review on Amazon

I know, we’re not supposed to respond to bad reviews, but this one snagged my attention.

Allow me to quote the review from Janice:

Not my kind of book. Too much gore. Couldn’t finish it. Didn’t even make it to the half way point.

Here’s my response:

Janice, it is a zombie book. Traditionally, aren’t they chock full of violence? I think I could write something with passive, Buddhist, or Hare Krishna, zombies…but really, what would they do except offer me a finger when it falls off?

I’m sorry. I know I was a Bad Author, but I couldn’t help myself. Will you forgive me?

 

I think I know what I did wrong now.

As per usual, my book sales are lackluster. I think there are two (three?) reasons for this.

  1. My publisher’s delay in releasing Blood Soaked and Gone, even in ebook format.
  2. My decision to inject comedy and schmaltz into a genre where people can be purists about their horror.
  3. I could also call my lack of skill as a self-marketer into question as a possible third reason.

Cross marketing for the semi-unknown author seems to be a key aspect of cracking the sales wall. Personal engagements in independent stores also seems to help. Attending conventions and talking to people does a bit, too.

This is difficult when you’re an introvert.

I’ve also advised other people in similar situations, to actually tell your readership what you’d like them to do. Let me do that again. If you’ve enjoyed what I’ve written, already in print, or here on my site, please feel free to share that with people you know. Word of mouth is still key.

Thank you everybody! Have a great weekend!