Monday, December 3, 2012

Whew, what a month!

November has been eventful for my series, to say the least. Forged In Death's November promotion on Amazon turned out to be a big success, with Book 1 going as low as 500 or so and staying beneath 2,000 for the entire month. My short story, Torg's First Death (a tale from The Death Wizard Chronicles), also went well below 1,000. And book 2 titled Chained By Fear, which was released on Nov. 28, is also selling well. Plus, reviews -- mostly positive -- are starting to roll in. Overall, the momentum is building, and I'm confident it will continue to build in the months to come.

I do see one potential problem-spot. I think that a lot of today's fantasy readers, more so than in year's past, really like the gritty stuff with heroes that are half good/half bad, as opposed to the loftier, more black/white tone that I've taken, which is more like Tolkien and less like, say, Martin. A few have said that my hero is too strong and that he's not realistic.

Well, here's my argument against that. Let's say you've got three kind of sassy/dirty heroes running through a cave to escape some bad guys. And they find a troll blocking the entrance. It ends up taking the three of them about an hour to finally find a way around the troll, which is fine and fun. But in the meantime, the bad guy's army has about a thousand of these trolls in it. So, how in the world will the good guys stand any chance at all if the toughest of them can't even take on one of the trolls? That to me is as unrealistic to me as a loftier story is to others.

Still, it's a matter of taste, and when a person spends hard-earned time and money on a book, he or she has every right to say whatever they feel about it. It's an honor to the writer, regardless.


chris said...

Looks like everything is coming up roses for the DWCs. Congrats, Jim.

Jim Melvin said...

Thanks, Chris!!! Hope all is well with you.

Stephan Train said...

Hello! Fellow AbsoluteWrite person here (Crasters). I love Martin, and Abercrombie, and Rothfuss and I'm more of a "shades of gray" writer myself. But, I love reading fantasy across the spectrum, from Prince of Thorns (the darker end) to something with super-defined good VS evil tropes (Dragonlance comes to mind).

Don't sweat the people who always want "gritty." Write what's working for you. I'm more interested in a hero/heroine who changes from beginning to end. That change can take any form.

Congrats on the numbers! And thanks for giving me something new to look up.

Also, if you want another blog-buddy, feel free to add me. Best of luck to you!

Jim Melvin said...


I just now saw this (it was awaiting moderation -- damn spammers -- and I missed it until now). Anyway, thanks for the great comment! I'm not as active on my blog as I used to be, but I'll certainly add yours.

wordwan said...

And it IS a matter of taste.

I wouldn't worry though. Peter Jackson will find you fans. *grin*

Good luck.



The Death Wizard Chronicles is a sexy, action-packed six-book epic fantasy series: Book One (Forged by Death), Book Two (Chained by Fear), Book Three (Eve of War), Book Four (World on Fire), Book Five (Sun God), Book Six (Death-Know).

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About Me

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Clemson, SC, United States
I was born in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., but grew up in St. Petersburg, Fla. I graduated from the University of South Florida (Tampa) in 1979 with a B.A. in Journalism. I now live in South Carolina near the Blue Ridge Mountains, a pleasant setting for writing, to say the least. I was an award-winning journalist at the St. Petersburg Times for twenty-five years and I currently work at the Charlotte Observer. I am married with five daughters.

The author

The author
Jim Melvin, a veteran journalist, debuts as novelist.