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Behind the Scenes

Overcoming Obstacles

Operation Trojan is currently in the publication pipeline and should be out in a couple of weeks.  Getting this book out has been overcoming one obstacle after another.  But I wanted to get this book done and complete the story I started writing three years ago.  Below is the Afterword for Operation Trojan which describes some of these obstacles.

 

I have said in every book that writing a book is hard.  Yep, still true.  This one was even harder and upon some reflection, I think I know why.  After all, you would think it would get easier the more you do it.  It hasn’t.  This one took more dedication than the other ones to finish.  But I wanted to finish it because I wanted to finish the story.  At least finish this story that I started almost three years ago.

While writing the rough draft took about the same amount of time as the previous books, it was more of a struggle.  I could see the destination and where I wanted to go.  I knew how the story started and how it ended.  I just had to connect the two points, which took a bit of work and exploration.  But that exploration is part of the fun as you find new and interesting things in that exploration.  But I was also a bit fatigued.  These books consumed quite a bit of my life these past three years, and I was ready to take a break.  I was so relieved when I finished the rough draft.  The story was done!  Now, I just needed to make it presentable.

I have written in the past that I have three editing passes on the book, by members of my family.  The editors are my wife, Michelle, who does the “I don’t get this” pass.  She usually finds the parts of the story where people will probably get lost and helps me fix it, so things are clearer.  Then there is my mom, Connie, a retired newspaper editor, who takes my rough writing and beautifies the language.  Then there is my dad, Jack, who is a retired newspaper sports copy editor.  He tends to find the grammar and punctuation mistakes everyone else misses.  After all of that is done, I do one last read, where I usually find one or two minor corrections.

Well, the editing process started off great and we were making excellent progress.  I was holding out hope that I could have this book out by the end of 2017.  Then came Hurricane Irma.

I live on the west coast of Florida, in the Tampa Bay region.  Around Labor Day 2017, long-range projections for Irma’s path started taking it into my part of Florida.  The entire area started going into storm-prep mode or evacuation mode.  Gas became a very rare commodity, so much so that our Toyota got the best tank of gas its ever going to get as the only gas I could find was Premium.  While a lot of people got out of the area, we decided to ride out the storm.  I froze editing on the book, making sure there were multiple copies of the latest version, so work done to date wouldn’t be lost.  Seeing as we didn’t know where or how bad the storm was going to be, a wise precaution.  I put up the storm shutters, and we all huddled together and rode out the storm as a family.

As it turned out, Irma went up the middle of the state and was just a Category 1 hurricane at its center when it reached my area.  I wasn’t near the center, so it wasn’t as bad as it could’ve been.  Around us, we had some trees down and were without power for a couple of days.  We got lucky.  But Irma did take some wind out of our sails.  It took a couple of weeks for things to get back to a semblance of normal.  It was a month before crews were able to pick up the pile of storm debris we left at our curb.

Once things settled down, life started to get crazy.  My wife had a big project at work that absorbed a lot of her time.  My parents had things going on.  And before we knew it, it was the holidays.  After the holidays, we made slow progress as things kept coming up.  I spent two weeks in California helping my brother and best friend move.  My wife and I started a major project around the house, taking advantage of her mother being out of town for a few months.

But we got past all of that and finishing the book has become a focus again.  The end is near.  And now I am reflecting on the journey.

It has been a long three-year journey.  I started this train thinking of a series of short stories.  But the story evolved.  The series of short stories turned into a novel, then two novels, and now this third novel.  Are there things I would change if I did it over?  Plenty.  But I am very proud of the work I have done on this story.  And I learned a lot doing it.  I hope you have enjoyed it.  Because I really wanted to tell a good, interesting story.  I hope that is what you found.  If you have, then I have done my job.

Nathan Rux

May 2018

The End of a Long Road

A little over two years ago, I sat down at my computer and started writing what would become New L.A.  At the time, I had no idea it would become a book.  I figured I would post parts as I wrote them and they would eventually make a short story.  And then maybe a series of short stories.  What ended up happening is I turned that series of short stories in an ebook.  And then I wrote another one, The Mirror Initiative.  Today, I finished the rough draft for Operation: Trojan, the third book of this trilogy.  I have finished that story.  Sure, there is still editing to do, but I have finished the main part of the writing process.  I have something that can now be molded and refined.  But, that part can start a little later.  I need to decompress first.

So, what is next?  Well, this is probably the last book I am going to do for awhile.  If these books gain traction and there is interest for more, well, I left hooks and I have ideas on moving forward.  And I have a side project that I have been putting off while I have been writing Operation: Trojan.  It would be something different and I am doing it with a friend.  So, that may turn into a book.

In the meantime, editing is next and hopefully, Operation: Trojan will be out in early 2018.  Maybe sooner.  We’ll have to see.

Reviews and Stuff

I know I have been terrible about keeping this updated, but in my defense, I’ve been hard at work writing Operation: Trojan, the third and final book in the New Los Angeles saga.  With this book, I will complete this story I really kind of stumbled into a little over two years ago.  At present, I’m trying to finish the rough draft and get the book into editing.

But, that is not what this post is about.  I awoke this morning with notifications on my phone that the review of The Mirror Initiative was completed and posted at Reader’s Favorite.  I had gotten a review done for New L.A., but it didn’t make 4 or 5 stars and instead got a private critique.  And it was a good critique.  That reviewer had like New L.A., but had some legitimate issues that I could see.  I took what the reviewer had said, and I applied it to The Mirror Initiative.  I had some trepidation opening up the website, fearing not a review, but another private critique.  That turned out to not be the case and this reviewer gave The Mirror Initiative 5-stars.  And I’m now allowed to post a 5-star seal for the book, which I have on The Mirror Initiative’s page, which I made a link to the review.  The review has been posted to The Mirror Initiative’s Barnes & Noble page and is supposed to be posted on the Google Play page as well.

Now, why am I going on about this?  Well, for me, this was a much need jolt I needed to help me get through the last bit of Operation: Trojan.  I write these books because I want to tell a tale and I hope that you, the audience, will enjoy it.  When I hear that anyone has enjoyed one of my stories, it immediately brightens my day.    It means I succeeded in what I set out to do.  Somebody has enjoyed that which I created.  And that is what makes this all worthwhile.

So, I will push on and I will finish the story.  I hope that in a few weeks, I will make a post that says I have finished the rough draft for Operation: Trojan.  And at that point, I may talk about what is next.  In the meantime, have a great day!

Readers’ Favorite review of The Mirror Initiative

 

Cover Approved!

Well, things are moving on the second book.  Editing finished last week and I spent this week doing the final read through and look-over.  It is now in the publishing pipeline and I got the cover proof for the book today.  I loved it and approved it after getting the opinions of those close to me.  I’m shooting for a release date for The Mirror Initiative by the end of the month.  Of course, I will announce it once I know it’s available for purchase.  In the meantime, check out the cover for The Mirror Initiative.