The Next Entry
Monday. 9.22.14 8:46 am
Sorry for the wait... between my work schedule and my fiancee's work schedule and classes at the Police Academy I do most of the housework on top of my work schedule so we get pretty busy. But I am getting to this at my first opportunity.
I really appreciate the welcome back!
So, I've self-published my first two novels. I've had to do some corrective work on the second one so it currently isn't available for sale on Amazon but I am hoping that by next week I will have all of the corrective work completed and can offer it for sale again! If you are interested please check out http://www.christophermichaelsnyder.net as this is my official site which covers my writing, designing, programming and music. You can click the novels link and each novel has its own page with a synopsis, other info and a link to Amazon. Right now any books that I sell...what little money I get from each sold...is going towards our wedding on December 27th 2014!
Both of my novels are completely different stories. I tend to blend all of the genres together that I enjoy. The first novel started as a horror/thriller..but grew into so much more. My second started as a heartwrenching drama but also grew into so much more. There is definitely something for everyone. Now, I am making a point of linking my novels together even though they aren't sequels and the stories/characters are generally not directly linked. However there are references to situations in each novel to previous novels to give the feeling that all of the stories are taking place in the same 'world'. I believe that my first novel, Where Men Fear To Tread weighed in at 376 pages while my second, Leading A Horse To Water really tips the scales at 505 pages. For now I am trying to keep the price for both books the same but eventually I will probably have to bump up the price of the second book as it costs more for my printer to produce and therefore the earnings are lower. But I am starting it off lower because I really hope to get some sales to impress people with the stories and hopefully get some word-of-mouth going. I really love these stories and I know that the following stories that I have in my head will be at least equally as strong. I would LOVE to share my writing with you.
I have to start on my third novel shortly after I finish the corrective work on the second one. I am hoping to seek out a literary agent after I complete my third novel. See if they can shop it around to big name publishers and see if there is any interest in signing me. But I may have to hold off depending on how much they want to charge me to represent me and if I have that kind of money available at that point. If not then I will self-publish the third and try again after completing my fourth. But since I self-published the first two, a publisher could technically pay me to re-release those books under their name as well which I'd think that they might want to do since, as I mentioned a minute ago, there are references to previous novels in each new novel. I like to think of them as a little treat in each book for those kind readers that have been sticking with me and had read past novels.
If I am not generating enough interest with big name publishers then I may pay to register my own LLC (Limited Liability Company) and become my own small publishing company. I could re-release my original novels, release my new novels and eventually perhaps even publish other authors once I feel that I've built enough of a name as a publishing company to make it mean something for other authors to have me publish their works too.
But while working on all of that I am developing the site for my friend's company which may very well lead to me going back to doing some freelance web design/development if there's interest there. So far he really loves his site which I will direct people to once it is finished. It isn't flashy but it isn't supposed to be as his company is a home remodelling company so I believe that the 'feel' of the site is what his company needs for its online presence.
I am also developing another site myself. I've been wanting to get into game development but I do not have the time to get into learning code for existing game engines and my graphic design skills are too lacking. So for now I am coding simple games to help me get down the basic ideas of game coding as well as programming Artificial Intelligence. As of now I've coded several different modes of rock, paper, scissors as well as several modes of tic tac toe. Not super impressive but I plan to really branch off of it. People can sign up for an account and the site will record wins, losses, draws as well as total points up for all games played. So not only am I coding AI for these games but I also have to make them work with the site back-end which saves all of the results from every game played.
I created these two games to try to get some people to sign up to start playing as I work on coding more games. The people who sign up earlier have longer to play and rack up points on the site than those that come along later. I also plan to work on multiplayer versions of the games if there are enough players who would be interested in playing at least some, if not all of the available games, against other players on the site. But for now I am keeping them as single player where you can earn 'bragging rights' by showing off your win percentage and points to other members and the visitors to the site. At this point the games can be played without signing up for a free account but of course game stats will not be recorded and you'd lose out on the community aspect of the site. But the games could still be played.
I am hoping that over time a good number of people will join and play fairly often which could lead to a lot of page views. I would like to incorporate small ads in completely unobtrusive areas and charge some money for people to have their ad placed there. Something like $10/week to have their ad on every page that the site generates. It could lead to a lot of views. And perhaps take donations, and this is why...
I love coding and am quite enjoying the challenge of programming these games so the computer presents a challenge to the players. But this takes a lot of time so I work on them as I can. However, if any amount of money comes in from the site then I can place a higher priority on working on new games. I'd work on making multiplayer versions of existing games as well as coding games which will require MUCH more difficult AI. And if there's money available I could potentially afford to bring in at least one other developer to help with the games or at least a graphics artist to help with any graphics that a game may need. If the site gets enough action then I may be able to bring in a like-minded programmer to work alongside myself to help out for free just for the recognition. I would just need what help I could get as it will be free to sign up for an account and there is no charge to play any of the games. Would be funded, if it is funded, by ads and/or donations.
I would have to say that the holy grail game for me to program would be Battleship. While not a difficult game to play...it is a logistic nightmare as far as coding an intelligent enough AI to actually play against the players. But I'd have to work my way up to that. So I do want to be able to work on adding multiplayer versions to existing games and program more games for members to play but again I have to prioritize all of the things going on in life so while I would always work on them while I can...if it's not making any money then I can't put quite as much time into it as I would be doing it because I love programming them and the thought of giving some people something 'interesting' to do in their free time.
I have the site's registration/user portions finished, the databases set up and had just finished writing the AI for the more difficult mode of tic tac toe. I just have to do a little more integrating as well as add a couple profile things such as the ability for members to either upload an avatar to be used across the site or select one from the available options to represent them on the site. I also just finished the design for the site so I have to integrate the games into it as well as the community features such as a shoutbox, a table that shows the most recently played games and who played them with a link to the player's profile. A comments/guestbook on player's profiles so that other members can comment on another user's profile. And I want to integrate the private messaging system that I already coded for a previous site I'd had going. So much to do just gotta find the time haha
Luckily I am off the next two days but I am about to do our dishes and then I have to go to the laundromat to do our laundry. We had to cut down my fiancee's hours at work by 8 hours per week because it was too much with the Police Academy but it's still a very long week for her. So not only am I paying a generous portion of our collective monthly bills (and more so now with her dropping hours) but I also take care of as much of the household stuff that I can when I am not at my full-time job working. A lot more extra work but she's reaching for her dream of becoming a police officer and ultimately a detective with a precinct. Plus she'd be making enough money that hopefully I can cut back on my hours some so I can put more time into writing, the band and programming. She loves my music and when she could go to our live shows and she really, really loves my novels. She tells me that she hopes to make enough that we can afford for me to not work and just write novels and music. And maybe at some point my novels will make enough money and maybe even some extra side money from the band and freelance web design. Any money I can make with my artistic abilities is fabulous to me as I love what I am able to do. But once again I am limited in my time to create such things due to work and all. But that's the plan.
I appreciate your tuning in here but I have to run to take care of the household duties so that I have the rest of today and most of tomorrow to work on correcting the second novel and working on things for the gaming site. I will post more and respond to any comments which I really appreciate any and all feedback! And keep posting yourselves as I read as many entries by as many other members as time allows