Sunday, July 29, 2012

Episode 48- Thrillerfest Report and More with J.F. Penn

Alan is traveling the world so thriller author J.F. Penn is our guest host this week.

Click her for direct download

Updates on Dave's and Jo's writing.

The next novel in Penn's Arcane series is called Exodus and will involve the Ark of the Covenant, but with no Indiana Jones tropes in sight.

Keeping track of all our crazy story ideas.

Using Pinterest as part of your social media platform.

WWJD- What Would James (Rollins) Do?

Jo is now writing as J.F. Penn rather than Joanna Penn. She was mentioned in a Forbes article about women writing under a male or non-gender specific pen name.

Dave is having trouble choosing a title for Dane Maddock 5.  Titling as an aspect of author branding.

Book recommendation- Spiral by Paul McEuen

Report from Thrillerfest 2012.

Craft Fest- focusing on the craft of writing.
Fight scene workshop with Joseph Finder.
"Forget All the Rules" with Lee Child.

Is there a certain personality type that runs through most thriller writers?

Things we love about International Thriller Writers.

Link to Jo's post about Thrillerfest.

Jo has signed with The Irene Goodman Agency.

Making the decision to try for a traditional publishing contract after you've had success in independent publishing.

Future trends in publishing.

Visit J.F. Penn at or

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Episode 47- The Audio Perspective with Jeffrey Kafer

In this episode, we interview voice artist Jeffrey Kafer, whose body of work includes books by Jeremy Robinson, Bob Mayer, Jim Berheimer, Dave's Dane Maddock adventures, and many others.

Click here for direct download

 Updates on Alan and Dave's writing.

 Revising your work- Adding polish by catching over-used words and phrases. "Kill words." Be careful how you go about correcting them- don't just break out the thesaurus.

 Dave feels that Scrivener makes it easy to find and eliminate problem words and phrases.

  Smart-Edit is a free program that identifies repeated words and phrases. (Dave mistakenly called it Smart-Write.)

 The importance of putting processes in place that help you improve your craft.

 How much "cleanup" do you do while writing the first draft?

 The interplay between character and dialogue. Making sure dialogue doesn't sound like the narrative voice.

 Tom Cruise as Jack Reacher- we foresee many Alan rants when the movie comes out.

 Promo- Adventures in Sci-Fi Publishing Podcast

 Interview with audiobook narrator Jeffrey Kafer

 Books Jeffrey has narrated.

What makes for dialogue that works?

 What's the process of narrating a book like?

 Why use a professional narrator/producer?

 Advice to writers from the narrator's perspective.

 Find Jeff online at:

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Episode 46- Fantastic Thrills with Gail Z. Martin

Due to recording issues, we’re a little bit out of sequence here and Dave and Alan talk about things that happened at the end of May/start of June.

Click here for direct download

Alan talks about his appearance at The Emerging Writers Festival

EWF Presentation blog:

Dave talks about being at Balticon.

We discuss briefly the comparison between the True Blood books and TV show.

This leads us to talk a little bit about the first person PoV in the Sookie books and The Hunger Games.

We go on to talk about the motivating factor of writers attending cons.

This leads us to talk about the way people present themselves at cons.

We talk about the Stephen King novel, Joyland, being published by Hard Case Crime, and how they’re deliberately not releasing an ebook to force people to buy the printed edition.

This leads us to talk about a bestseller list on the article about Stephen King, where the ubiquitous 50 Shades books hold the top three slots.

We also discuss the nature of poor stories getting great sales, lowest common denominator writing and the perpetuation of mediocre content.

Dave mentions Jeremy Robinson’s new book, Second World.

Then we have an interview with fantasy author, Gail Z Martin.

Gail talks about her love of writing supernatural creatures and how to include them well in your stories with a good reason for why they’re there.

Gail talks about writing action, fight and battle scenes.

Gail offers advice on how to get kids interesting in writing and keep them interested.

Ice Forged, Gail’s latest book, is out in January and you can find a sneak peek at her site:

Dave asks if Gail has considered a 50 Shades Of Grey version of her work, which leads to a short discussion on modern publishing options for established writers.

Gail offers advice to aspiring writers – write more and look for honest feedback. Don’t be too quick finish a work and post it directly to Amazon. Try to keep a long-term perspective.

Dave asks Gail about her other business, with her books to help authors build their career and where she helps small businesses promote and market themselves.

Gail’s podcast is The Ghost In The Machine and that’s something she enjoys pursuing.

Ghost In The Machine Podcasts -