Sunday, May 20, 2012

Love and Enlightenment

As our loyal followers will know, we believe in the empowerment of women, especially young women. It seems that many of today’s ills start with people treating others as less than fully human and for millennia this had its roots in the idea that females were not equal to males and could be treated like property. Even fifty years after the pill gave women control over their reproductive lives, so many young women think that they must swallow their natural personalities and “act like a girl” in order to find love and fulfillment. It drives us crazy when this happens and we wonder what happened to all the fine and fiery feminists we knew growing up and why they aren’t teaching their daughters better.

That is not to say that we think all men are scum. Sometimes, young men just haven’t been given the opportunity to figure out that love among equals is so rich and fulfilling. They’ve been told to “act like a man” by older males who desperately try to mask their own insecurities by shunning any real emotion and treating their mates as servants to their base needs. We rejoice when a young man manages to break free of these sociological shackles, often fastened to him by his father, and learns how emotional vulnerability can lead to real character and lifetime fulfilling relationships. We think there is yet hope for humanity every time a young man learns to open his heart and tell his lover, “You complete me.”

We get into some of this in our next installment of the Bobbie Titan series. There is still plenty of adventure, but Bobbie is older and we make her come to terms with her feelings over the people close to her. And, because we can, we force Bobbie on to both sides of the equation. She has to deal with both her dominant and submissive personalities when it comes to love. To help her with this we’ve added a new character, a young man with noble ideals but less than perfect execution. We also pump up one of the supporting characters from the first book and let Bobbie confront the age old problem of something new and exciting versus something old and comforting. Of course, due to Bobbie’s powers, this confrontation is supercharged.

So in a little less than a month we will pick up Bobbie Titan’s tale and complete the work necessary to provide the sequel to The Mark of Kain. Our advanced readers still have a few weeks to finish their reviews and give us their comments. After that we’ll dive in and once again breathe life into our characters so by late summer or early fall, everyone will get the chance to find out what Bobbie is getting up to in Oregon. And you can bet that our heroine will learn that being true to who you are is the only way you will find real happiness.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

EBook Clubs?

We like book clubs. Our family belongs to several but, as independent eBook writers, we’re having some difficulty getting any interest from clubs about reading our novels.

Some of this has to do with availability. Book clubs, at least the ones we are familiar with, tend to be old fashioned affairs. Many of the members prefer to check out the assigned reading from the library. The problem with that is that our eBooks aren’t in the library. These institutions only have limited budgets and, so far, they aren’t devoting a great deal of that to eBooks. What eBooks they do carry are digital versions of best sellers from famous authors. Another issue with library eBooks is the plain awful software you have to use to check out a book. It is clumsily designed, hard to use, and prone to causing problems on the computers that install it. It’s made by Adobe, but since they give it away, there is no incentive for them to build a decent product. What the library system needs is a cloud based system like Amazon’s or Google’s that keeps the eBook, the accounting, and all your check-in and outs on the web. That way it could be easy to use with any PC, smart phone, or e-reader.
Some of the problem lies with the clubs themselves. We are among the few club members we know who prefer to read the selection on our e-readers. It is changing slowly, but there seems to be real resistance by book club participants to even try using a Kindle. Even with all of our preaching to the contrary, it’s hard to convince people who love paper that it is actually a more enjoyable reading experience if you can just trust the technology.

So to counter all of this, Lynn Evans is looking for book clubs where we can donate our novels for the members to read. We’re hoping the lure of getting something for free will win over at least a few clubs into reading our novels electronically. We will even make ourselves available to discuss the work should the club members wish it. Anything to help open the virtual world of eBooks and the possibilities they represent.