Tag Archives: emergence

Inspiration for Emergence & the Janus Unfolding Series

You will find several themes in Emergence and the Janus Unfolding series each with its own source of inspiration.

Foremost is the mysterious Jim Post in Emergence. The mystery and the and the beginning of the book came to me in a new small emergencedream. A wealthy and mysterious man had built a grand home in Southwest Washington State in our near future. The locals knew nothing about him.

The home was on fire, and burning so hot that the fire department couldn’t put it out. When the fire finally burnt itself out, there was little left of the house, and the fire crew found a body inside.

When I woke the next day, I started to write about the man and the mysteries surrounding him, including about whether it was his body they found.

The book and series developed around additional themes. Evolution is a prime one. What would you do if evolution took a turn to develop a better model of human and you found that you were one of them? What would you do if you found you weren’t?

When we think about evolution, it is usually about what has happened in the past. What will happen in the future? Technology and Social Media are making changes in our lives, but what about the basic human. There were a number of different hominids in our past, and our model emerged to be the dominant one (with traces of the others in our DNA).

Is that it? Does evolution stop with us as we are? Why not a new and better model?

The new humans might have readily identifiable improvements: a little stronger and maybe faster, physically. Perhaps they could reason better and faster as well. What more would they have, and where would these other abilities take the human race. de chardin

I’ve taken the liberty to stretch the concepts I found a number of books. Three that stand out are:  The Phenomenon of Man, by Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, Entangled Minds, by Dean Radin, and Mindfulness in Plain English, by Henepola Gunaratana. Also I found the ‘k-space’ notion in James P. Hogan’s The Genesis Machine helpful.Entangled Minds cover

MindfulnessOf course, when thinking about an evolutionary change, one wonders what triggered the change. The characters in Emergence and the other books of the series Factotum and Inheritance are curious about that, too.

I must warn you in advance, that my books create a hopeful scenario for our common future.

Friendly Thoughts

Promotion of ‘Emergence’ eBook

The promotion of the eBook Emergence ran from 8/22 to 9/5.  Here’s the results and what I learned.

The price on Amazon and Barnes & Noble was lowered from $3.99 to $0.99.  For a fee, twenty different services sent an email to their clients on a designated day during that period announcing the discount and two others sent out dozens of tweets about the discount. new small emergence

379 copies of Emergence were sold for $0.99. Happily also about 20 copies each of the other two books in the series, Factotum and Inheritance, were also sold at the regular price. Thirteen Emergence eBooks were sold on Barnes and Noble, all the rest of the sales were on Amazon.

Three book reviews of Emergence were posted on Amazon. One of the reviews had 2-stars from a person who never rated anything higher than 3-stars. The other two were 5-star reviews.

It was difficult to assess the effectiveness of each of the services. One pattern that seemed to emerge was that the emails were far more effective than the tweets.

The fees for these services exceeded the revenues by quite a margin. In an effort to reduce the gap in the next discount promotion later this year, some services whose email presentation did not look good and the sales on their day were low will be dropped.Interview cover image

One service that exceeded my expectations in terms of the service they provided was It’s Write Now. They sent out the promised email announcement. They also tweeted the announcement and they set up and published an author interview which thought was well done. I’ve added the interview to my website.

The hope was that revenues would at least cover the fees.  That didn’t happen, but having so many people read my books is a good thing.  It was also heartening to see that some who purchased Emergence also purchased the other books in the series and it would be great to see more of this as people finish reading Emergence.

Also, getting reviews is a very helpful outcome.  Hopefully more will come as people finish the books.  Another very good outcome is that Emergence has been in the top 100 hundred best Reviewsselling books in the Amazon category  Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Children’s eBooks > Science Fiction, Fantasy & Scary Stories > Science Fiction during this entire promotion.  The highest it has been is #6, it has been #20 or lower during much of the time.

One more item of note is that a Goodreads giveaway of Emergence paperbacks was set up to end on 9/1.  When that ended, the 643 people who did not win a copy in that giveaway were notified of the eBook discount.

Pictures, Dickinson Quote and Scrivener

The quote from Emily Dickinson in the photo below is typical of posts I started making this week in response to Shari Stauch of Where Writers Win, who suggested I post on Twitter at leastAlpine Lakes Wilderness by Scott Kranz Emily Dickinson quote once a day.

I was searching for content. I posted one of my book covers occasionally with a quote from that book. Too much of that is spam. I knew I had to look elsewhere for additional content. So I made my own.

People responded favorably to the posts. I began getting more followers on Twitter and likes and comments on Facebook. One person on Facebook ordered all three of my books in response to the posts on the day I used the Emily Dickinson quote.

The positive response is wonderful, but the most beneficial outcome from the effort has been the feeling I get from creating something beautiful and from the quote lodging in my mind as I approach my writing for the day.

Scrivener – I have been writing in MS Word. I wrote chapter descriptions, chapters and character descriptions in separate Word documents and kept them all in a file folder. The process was a little awkward, but it was working.

A few authors mentioned that they use software called Scrivener. I gave it a try. It doesn’t have all the features that Word has, but it has an organization scheme that keeps all those separate files in outline form on the left while you are writing.

It took a couple of days to learn Scrivener and to wrestle into a form that would work for me. I’m going to use it for my fourth book.

“…indistinguishable from magic.” Janus Unfolding

As I write the Janus Unfolding series, Arthur Clarke’s quote, “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic,” comes to mind.

Janus Unfolding Series Banner

Janus Unfolding Series Banner

Suppose we are the less advanced people (easy enough to imagine that). Then ask: What would be so advanced relative to our experience to seem like magic to us?  For example.

Magic – Moving from one location to another instantly, perhaps without being seen in transit.
Magic – All children are loved, clothed, fed, sheltered and given an education, and all women are treated with respect and empowered to fully participate in society. We may as well throw in that there is no more war or armed aggression and bullies do not prosper.

What would we have to understand for the first one to seem common place?
What would a world have to be like for the second one to be the norm?