The printer overnighted me a small batch of “The Sniper” chapbook, and they look awesome:
All copies will be signed by Richard and me, and then this reward will ship in December to all supporters who were on Level Two or above as of THIS MONTH, so now is the perfect time to sign-up if you’re interested in what I’m doing over on Patreon.
My next exclusive signed Limited Edition chapbook for my Patreon supporters is “The Sniper” by Richard Chizmar, and I’m pleased to report the printer is finishing up their work this week. (If you want more information about how this chapbook came to be, please check out this post from last month.)
All copies will be signed by Richard and me, and then this reward will ship in December to all supporters who are on Level Two or above as of THIS MONTH, so now is the perfect time to sign-up if you’re interested in what I’m doing over on Patreon!
We’re getting into a very busy time of year for everyone, so I’ll try to keep my updates short and sweet instead of rambling.
As you know if you read the Revival production update over at LetterPress Publications the other week, I spent much of my summer talking to printers after the one I had worked with for many years closed their doors. (They actually printed the very first Cemetery Dance Publications hardcover way back in 1992!)
The most urgent matter in my search were the BIG books on a tight schedule like Revival, but the old printer had also printed Patreon Stories: Volume One for me.
In September, it came time to find out which of the many printers I had talked to over the summer might be able to handle Patreon Stories: Volume Two.
I won’t get too far into the weeds, but the short version is this: a printer I actually drive past on my 90 minute commute to the Cemetery Dance offices will be printing this volume. As a kid, my family would drive by that printing plant on the way to vacations and the such, and I always thought it would be awesome if they printed one of my books, so this is kind of like coming full circle.
This morning, I added the names of all of my supporters as of October 31 to the special THANK YOU page that concludes the book, and I’ll be sending the printer all of the files next week.
I don’t have a schedule from them yet, but I’m hoping the Signed Trade Paperback and the Signed Limited Edition hardcover will ship by the end of the year. The super fancy Lettered Edition will take a few months longer to complete due to all of the hand-binding, etc. The plan is for it to make a nice matching set with the Volume One Lettered Edition, though.
I approved the proofs today, so the printer will be ready to roll next week. All copies will be signed by both Richard and me next month, and this reward will ship in December to all current supporters who are on Level Two or above as of November 2019.
That means now is the perfect time to sign-up if you’re interested in what I’m doing over on Patreon.
A few years back, Richard Chizmar and I collaborated on Darkness Whispers, a novella that was published as a beautiful signed Limited Edition hardcover by Scarlet Galleon Publications and later as a trade paperback and eBook by JournalStone.
Here’s a little secret, though: Darkness Whispers is actually based on the very first short story Richard ever sold, way back in the 1980s, called “The Sniper.”
In early 2016, he was going through some old files in his office when he stumbled upon the original manuscript, as well as an acceptance letter and a contract — but a contributor copy was nowhere to be found, and he realized he had no memory of the story ever being published.
A comic adaptation of “The Sniper” had been included as a bonus item in Midnight Promises, his very first short story collection, but the prose version appeared to be unpublished after all these years.
Richard asked me if I would be interested in doing a rewrite and expansion of the story. I quickly agreed, and we traded it back and forth for a few weeks and came up with the novella that would become Darkness Whispers.
In this new chapbook I’m publishing exclusively for my Patreon Supporters, you will find Richard’s original draft of “The Sniper,” so you can experience the story as he originally intended it way back in the day.
All copies will be signed by both Richard and myself, and this reward will ship in December to all supporters who are on Level Two or above as of November 2019, so now is the perfect time to sign-up if you’re interested in what I’m doing over on Patreon!
The book was first published in 2004 as Black Fire by James Kidman, and there was a paperback edition from Leisure and a signed Limited Edition hardcover from Cemetery Dance Publications, but it’s been out of print since then.
Now that my Patreon supporters have given me the opportunity to tackle this one again, I’m restoring my preferred title and my real name for all future editions.
So far, there has been a ton of fine tuning and some serious excising of unnecessary material through Chapter Twenty, but something really surprising happened in the following section:
I discovered a bunch of chapters that really, really, really were NOT needed.
The reason why this happened is actually rather simple: the first finished draft of the novel was only 50,000 words, but in the early 2000s, that wasn’t long enough to sell the book as a novel to a trade publisher.
A good friend gave me some tips on how make the story zig and zag, to add more words and stretch things out, and that added material got me to the word count needed to sell the book to Leisure, but…
None of what I added really helps the story.
And my rule these days is simple: if the material doesn’t develop the characters or move the story forward (and preferably it does both things), out it goes.
So, yep, this will be one of those very rare “Author’s Preferred Editions” where stuff is being CUT out instead of crammed back in, and I’m certain you won’t miss the things I’m editing out.
Reworking this section is taking me a little bit more time that expected, but I’ll have some more news to share soon, and I thank everyone again for all of your support!
Orders can now be placed through Cemetery Dance Publications and they will have free US shipping and the books will be signed for a limited time only.
Orders via Amazonwon’t be signed, but on the other hand Amazon can have a copy of the book with the amazing Vincent Chong cover artwork in your hands in two days or less, so that’s pretty tempting, eh?
As you might recall, this new edition of Weak and Wounded follows the revised and expanded edition of More Than Midnight. Between now and the end of the year, Dreamlike States and Lost and Lonely will also all receive the same treatment: revised, expanded, and with new Vincent Chong covers for their first appearance in trade paperback.
Here are my advance copies of all four trade paperbacks, so you can see what the complete “set” will look like once completed:
“So It’s Come To This: A Poetry Chapbook” by Brian James Freeman will be my third Patreon-only chapbook, and it should ship around the end of July.
These Patreon exclusive publications are now labeled “LetterPress Publications [Private Printing]” on the title page and include this notice on the copyright page: “This is a Private Printing by LetterPress Publications for Brian James Freeman’s supporters on Patreon and has not been designated for sale through any retail channels.”
Each chapbook is “housed” in a custom-printed envelope with a fine linen finish and the LetterPress Publications logo printed on it in silver metallic ink. To make these chapbooks a little different from others I’ve seen, the inside-covers will feature some kind of artwork or faux marbling, sort of like illustrated endpapers. Each chapbook is also signed and hand-numbered.
Well, it’s been quiet around here because I was really busy with the LetterPress Publications launch of Revival by Stephen King when I got a kidney stone on May 14! Which then went silent until last Saturday when it came roaring back while I was in the mountains camping in the middle of nowhere… and it tormented me until yesterday morning when I finally passed the little bugger! What fun!
So, I missed out on doing a bunch of the promotions I had planned for Revival, and it goes without saying that nothing all that productive (except maybe thinking up some new swear words while dealing with the extraordinary pain) has been done in the past week!
But, that lost time cannot be called back, and all I can do is focus on getting things done in the here and now, so I returned to my laptop yesterday afternoon, ready to catch-up on a bunch of things… only to discover the R key on my keyboard had decided now was the perfect time to just stop working.
It turns out, when your company is called “LetterPress” and the book is called Revival, you use the R key a lot… ha…
For now I’m pasting in my Rs as I need them (take that, Paul Sheldon!) and a replacement keyboard should arrive later today. It’s been a long time since I replaced anything in a laptop, but this is supposed to be easy. We’ll see. 🙂
Anyway, it’s been one of THOSE weeks, but luckily I’m surrounded by very talented people who have kept on working, and thanks to them you can now see the full cover for “So It’s Come to This,” my next signed Limited Edition chapbook that will be published exclusively for my supporters on Level Two and above on Patreon as of the end of the day today! (That means if you’ve been thinking of signing up, today would be a great day!)
As a bonus, I thought I’d also show off the “faux marbled endpapers” that will grace the inside-cover of the chapbook to make it a little different than most chapbooks you see published:
Lots more updates to come in June! Thank you again for all of your support!