My Vocation Summary

Posted: January 1, 2019 in The Write Stuff
Tags: , ,

…Or what I did in between bouts of adulting during 2018.

In the arcanum of Amazon lore, mythology states the greater the number of titles an author publishes, the greater their odds of being served up by the Amazon Wizard of Logarithm during browsing sessions by potential readers. More titles, more views. More views, more clicks. So in 2018, I tried my hand at self-publishing, converting a number of previously-published short stories to singles on Kindle Direct Publishing. The rights on these stories had long expired in the venues where they were previously published, so I snapped on some free covers and posted them to Amazon at 99-cents each, not that I expected them to sell as much as I wanted the boost in title count.

Mr. Scamper’s War, Dave’s Aliens, Government Waste, and Mitchellsville are all now available from my Amazon page. I can’t say whether or not the additional titles have helped, but I like to think they haven’t hurt.

2018 also saw the publication of Earning It, a short story in the anthology To Be Men, published by Superversive Press. I enjoyed the hell out of writing this one; the story flew out from my fingertips as fast as I could type.

Another short story I loved writing was picked up by Dark City Mystery Magazine. White Powder Cowboys tells the story of two cops on deep night duty who pull over more trouble than they bargained for. I had a blast writing this one, my only internal conflict being whether or not to leave the ending ambiguous or clear everything up.

The publisher of April’s Fool and I came to an amicable divorce related to current and future titles. I removed April’s Fool from publication and signed a three-book contract with Red Adept to re-release April’s Fool and to publish May Day and June Bug. I’m really excited about this as I was able to rewrite a chunk of gawky prose in Fool that had bothered me from day one, fixing some obvious new-writer weirdness. The new release is in the hands of the editors and I hope to see the cover and publication dates soon.

2018 saw the publication of Yeager’s Getaway, and I admit I struggled a bit to get this one out the door. The story required a lot of research–everything from the top speed of a Cobalt A40 yacht to the distance a North Korean-made surface-to-air man-portable heat seeking missile could track and kill a jet aircraft. (Yes, I’m paranoid that my browser history will one day land me in a black-site prison somewhere in an unnamed country.) I also wanted to pay homage to the US Marine Corps and their sacrifices in Vietnam. I believe every hindsight historian of note, from Ken Burns to Mark Bowden, has done a disservice to the Vietnam veteran, painting them as pawns at best, fools at worst.  In Yeager’s Getaway, I tried to give the USMC vets a stage of their own, so they could have a voice, rather than one built from anti-war politics by armchair historians.

If the early reviews are any guide, the work was worth the effort.

And late in 2018, I wrote “The End” on a novel I’m calling Judge Shivers, which is a fun little tale about a modern-day wizard transported back to the American West of 1887. Calico John Shivers is a quarter-Irish, quarter-Chinese, quarter-Cherokee, a quarter-black and 100% a bad ass. Facing a lack of magic, bigotry, and a slew of enemies, Shivers is in trouble up to his neck and will have to overcome six-guns and long odds to get back home. I hope to see this novel picked up in 2019.

Beyond that, I’m looking forward to seeing what stories I can share in 2019!

Happy reading,

Scott Bell

January 1st, 2019



  1. Congrats, Scott, especially on the three book contract with Red Adept.


  2. S Coats says:

    Well done Scott! Stan


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