Wayward Pines Genesis Series finale…

is live on Amazon. 

1082 KW PINES_Konkoly_GENESIS part oneLast Betrayal cover KW1183 KW PINES_Konkoly_SANCTUARYI recently launched two novellas in Blake Crouch’s Wayward Pines Kindle World, completing my planned Genesis Series prequel.

Last Betrayal and Sanctuary are available on Amazon for $1.99 each. Combined, the three novellas span 250 pages, chronicling Adam Hassler’s introduction to the Wayward Pines landscape, along with many other familiar characters. The major backdrop to my series is the construction of the fence…I won’t say anymore. If you haven’t heard of the Wayward Pines series, and you’re a fan of suspense or thrillers with a horror twist…this is your series. Watch the trailer for the upcoming Fox mini-series, but be careful. You might become hooked!

If you decide to give it a try, start with Blake Crouch’s Pines. At the very least read his first book before my series. The twist near the end of his book is epic, and would be spoiled by my novellas. Trust me on this.

Enjoy!

 

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

One Year Anniversary…

As a full time writer.

Actually, it was  September 17.  The day, one year ago, that my regular paychecks stopped, my cell phone allotment ceased, my ridiculously generous healthcare insurance ended, and “the man” quit paying for my car (and gas).

ONE OF THE BEST DAYS OF MY LIFE!  

Life has been hectic…no doubt about that…but I have never once looked back. Probably because I don’t have the time! Here’s what I’ve accomplished in the past year.

Published 423,772 words broken down into:

3 NovelsThe Perseid Collapse, Event HorizonPoint of Crisis

3 Novellas for Kindle WorldsFirst Contact, Last Betrayal and Sanctuary (coming very soon)

1 Non-fiction collaboration on personal readiness and disaster preparedness—Practical Prepping: No Apocalypse Required.

Pursued several franchising opportunities:

Re-edited and re-issued 2 books—The Jakarta Pandemic and Black Flagged.

Launched 4 audiobooks through Audible—The Perseid Collapse, Event Horizon, Point of Crisis and Black Flagged Redux. The rest of the Black Flagged franchise is on the way.

Signed a deal with Amazon Crossing to translate and publish The Jakarta Pandemic in German. E-book and hardcopy.

Signed a deal to translate The Perseid Collapse into German. I’ll publish it as an e-book.

Sounds like no time for fun and games, right? Don’t shed any tears for me. I had plenty of downtime.

photo1 photo2 photo3 photo4

9 Comments

Filed under Writing

Zombies, black helicopters, the government…

I’m not sure which is worse!

1165 Steven Konkoly ebook PRACTICAL PREPPING

In Practical Prepping: No Apocalypse Required…it doesn’t matter! From a snowstorm induced power outage to a full-scale invasion of the United States, Randy Powers of Practical Tactical and I will point you in the right direction…the hills out yonder in case of an invasion. Seriously, the title says it all. There’s something for everyone in this book, written with a little humor and a lot of humility. Don’t be caught off guard by the next disaster, adopt the Practical Prepping mindset TODAY!

Available as Kindle book or hardcopy

Order From Amazon

 

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

A quick Homesteading lesson

From the Konkoly family garden.

BeansI decided to try something new this year. After researching and writing three post-apocalyptic, prepper-themed books in a row, I started to grasp the sheer scope and effort required to raise enough food on your land to survive without supermarkets and 2-day Amazon prime delivery of freeze-dried food buckets. I won’t go into the details of my broader “awakening” here. Instead, I’ll share one stark example.

I’ve never planted dry beans (beans suitable for drying and long-term storage) before, so I wanted to get a handle on the difficulty involved and general yields. I planted a 1.5ft x 6 ft row of Cannellini bean plants, spaced according to the seed packet recommendation. 9 square feet. I wasn’t planting for a big harvest…this was a test run. The results?

Growing the plants proved to be effort free. We saw a small amount of bug damage and light spotting on the leaves, but the pods looked healthy throughout the summer.

Yield: 9 square feet produced 2 cups of beans or .22 cups per square feet. 

Lesson Learned: Depending on the availability of other protein sources, to provide 8-10 cups of beans per week for a family of four, we would need to plant nearly 2,000 square feet of bean plants!  I’m not even sure my 2-cup yield would be enough to sow a field that large.

Randy Powers of Practical Tactical (co-author of Practical Prepping:No Apocalypse Required) wasn’t kidding when he said it takes about an acre of land to feed ONE person for an entire year. I’ve seen estimates lower than one acre using “square foot gardening” and “vertical gardening,” but the number of plants required will remain the same.

Homesteading will not be easy, but it’ll sure go smoother if you start now. Start small and build your experience level—one season at a time.

 

6 Comments

Filed under prepping

Who wants to listen to me talk for 4 hours?

Probably none of you. I know I wouldn’t. How about one hour? Sounds better to me.

Screen Shot 2014-08-26 at 6.45.14 AM Screen Shot 2014-08-26 at 6.46.20 AM Screen Shot 2014-08-26 at 6.49.02 AMLast week I spent four combined hours on live internet radio and podcasts, talking about the upcoming post-apocalyptic collapse, survival, prepping, the Ebola threat, myself (occasionally), my books and the menstrual threat lurking around every corner (you can thank Prepper Chicks for that). Lots of great information, hearty laughs and serious confessions broken into four, one hour segments. There’s something for everyone—I promise.

Prepper Chicks morning segment via You Tube. Shooting the breeze with NRA instructor and kick-$#! prepped-mom Lori . Check out her website.

Prepper Chicks After Dark segment via You Tube. Playing the survival card game “Conflicted” with Lori and Kat “Herbal Prepper.” By the end of the show I had been awake for nearly 20 hours, so it gets a little “punchy.”

All Things Apocalyptic show via You Tube with best-selling author G. Michael Hopf. G. Michael served as a Marine in the Gulf War and now writes post apocalyptic novels for a living. Check out his critically acclaimed New World Series. 

Rational Survivor Podcast. Finally, Randy Powers and I spent more than an hour talking with Kyle, the Rational Survivor, about our upcoming collaboration, Practical Prepping: No Apocalypse Required, and many, many prepping topics. Lots of information in this one.

ENJOY!

2 Comments

Filed under interview

Book Review of Sedulity by David Forsyth

81k2I0oXNzL._SL1500_I try to avoid reading books in the same genre as my work-in-progress, for a number of reasons I won’t explain—you’d end up scratching your head and concluding that I’m a bit “touched in the head.” You might think that already. When I finished (for now) The Perseid Collapse series, I treated myself to a novel I have been watching for several months, SEDULITY.  David Forsyth’s book burned up the Amazon charts when it launched in March, and is still making waves…I’m playing with words related to the asteroid strike in his book. It’s early, and coffee has not been delivered to my office. My family takes the day off from catering to me on Saturday. I’m not a completely evil overlord. Anyway, aside from having a completely cool last name (Frederick Forsyth is one of my favorite authors), David wrote an incredible disaster tale. We both incorporate asteroids in our latest series, but tell a completely different story following  the impact…not to mention that David’s asteroid is way bigger than mine. I know—Asteroid envy—not a healthy sentiment. Check out my review of SEDULITY and grab a copy for $2.99.

 

 

“Like the Rogue asteroid in Forsyth’s blistering tale of a modern apocalypse, Sedulity took me by complete surprise when I started reading…and didn’t let go until I had devoured the entire novel—in short order!

Sedulity, named after the luxury cruise liner at the center of Forsyth’s novel, is a masterfully complex apocalyptic tale, combining every element I find essential to the genre. Strong character development, intense action sequences, and big picture connections.

In the beginning, we are introduced to a variety of characters, from different walks of life. The ship’s captain and wife, a normal couple on a once-in-a-lifetime cruise with their daughter, a self-absorbed Texan-oil baron and a humble ship’s bartender…the perfect kaleidoscope to view the soon to arrive disaster—Rogue, a one mile wide asteroid, described in chilling detail by Forsyth as it races toward the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

I loved the juxtaposition of personal character driven sequences with the matter-of-fact description of the asteroid’s effects. On one hand you are thrust into chaotic, high-octane survival scenes testing the limits of the characters’ endurance, on the other, you are shown the inevitable and brutally effective nature of the disaster’s impact on the natural environment. I kept thinking “this isn’t personal,” but Forsyth jars you out of this reverie and slams you back into a seat on the Sedulity, where the catastrophe feels 100% realistic and very personal.

Action sequences are intense, perfectly described and not for the faint of heart…not over the top gory, just realistic and impactful. Forsyth injects an appropriate amount of dry humor at times, which I greatly appreciated in the absolute chaos unfolding on the ship. The author leaves no stone unturned when it comes to the effects of the asteroid strike. I knew a wave would hit the ship…the rest was completely and pleasantly unexpected, which brings me to the final genre element that I love. 

This isn’t simply a story about the trials and tribulations of the crew and passengers of the Sedulity. Forsyth’s vision extends far beyond my simple assumption, and promises to deliver an incredible post-apocalyptic series on par with Lucifer’s Hammer. I eagerly await the second installment.”

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Review

My name is Steven Konkoly—

And I have Amazon Infatuation Syndrome.

It started nearly four years ago, when I decided to forego sending query letters to agents, after reading Joe Konrath’s blog from top to bottom.

I independently uploaded my first novel to Amazon’s various retail platforms and sold 5,000 copies (with minimal marketing) within 6 months. I quickly decided that self-publishing through Amazon presented a viable path to becoming a full-time writer. I published my second book (in a completely different genre) one year after my Amazon debut, selling 8,000 copies in six months. A new book followed every six month—all while I worked a lucrative day job and dreamed about the day I would resign to pursue full-time writing. Each book brought me closer, until I finally developed enough sales and readership velocity to escape the gravity of an easy, six figure salary job. Amazon didn’t write my books, but they played a more than nominal role in my quiet success. For that, I’m a little infatuated with Amazon.

Nate Hoelfelder at The Digital Reader thinks I’m deluded because I’m happy with Amazon. Read his article. His blog post is the latest reaction to the ongoing corporate negotiation battle between Amazon and Hachette Publishing. In essence, he says that corporations only care about the bottom line and cannot be your friend. Friend? How about business partner? How about EXCELLENT business partner? Then, he goes on to say that Amazon’s words are meaningless, because they are a corporation spewing PR desperation that should be taken for face value.

I understand the concept of “acta non verba,” which is why I judge my friends and business partners by their actions more than their words.

Here’s a run down of the actions Amazon has taken to earn my trust and friendship.

- They promptly (every month) and transparently  pay 70% royalties on my titles. I can see my sales figures and calculated royalties through an always-accessible, near real-time sales report system).

- They allow me to control pricing, so I can optimize product performance based on market conditions. They also provide me with real-time analytics to decide the best price point. 

- They don’t require onerous contracts or knee-capping non-compete clauses. I can terminate my contract at any time. The most “draconian” non-compete measure implemented by Amazon’s Kindle Direct Program requires 90 days of exclusivity, in exchange for enhanced marketing tools. Kindle exclusivity has netted me over $35,000 since its inception in late 2012. I’m feeling dewy-eyed.

-I retain the necessary rights to expand in all media, like audiobooks, foreign sales, movie/TV rights. I earn a significant portion of my income from these media, and plan to expand my presence further.

-Friendly and responsive customer service across all platforms. They’ve quickly resolved every issue I’ve brought to their attention

-They’ve provided marketing opportunities that have allowed me to grow readership drastically.

-They market my book every second of every day through customer emails, matching preferences on related books’ sales pages, and search algorithms. I didn’t sell 5,000 copies of my first book in six months through any genius marketing plan of my own.

-I’ve sold 55,000 books over the past 12 months, all through Amazon.

-They’re nice! I’ve personally met everyone directly involved with the different Amazon platforms. No evil smiles. This crew genuinely cares about authors, and we all share a common vision. To sell more books! As an author, if you’re suspicious of that sentiment, you have a serious problem on your hands.

BUT I DON’T JUST LIKE THEM AS AN AUTHOR!

As a customer:

-They shipped a basket ball stand (60lbs at least) for free because I paid roughly $80 to be a member of Amazon Prime. I recoup at least five times the cost of membership in free shipping every year.

-They provide hassle free returns on nearly every product I’ve purchased. I don’t hesitate to order an item. If I don’t like it, I print a return label, tape up the same box and get a refund immediately. I’m lazy like that. Beautiful!

-The only items I can’t find on Amazon are ammunition, guns, cigarettes, booze, and pornography. Apparently Hachette’s parent company, Lagardere, had a tough first quarter this year due to the loss of cigarette sales in Hungary. Now that’s a company to be proud of! Sorry, that’s my AIS shining through. Forgot my meds.

If supporting Amazon as an author and customer means I suffer from Amazon Infatuation Syndrome, then so be it. I’m infatuated.

To read more about this curious syndrome label, and how it is utterly preposterous, please check out Hugh Howey’s most recent post and David Gaughram’s guest post at Words with JAM.

 

 

and Amazon qualifies as a good friend. Will that change?

15 Comments

Filed under Writing

Point of Crisis Arrives

1114 Steve Konkoly ebook POINT OF CRISIS_4_Lon thousands of Kindles across North America and the UK! Yes, I did have nearly 50 pre-orders from eager readers across the pond. Paper versions will ship today and the audiobook should be available in late August or early September.

If you haven’t purchased a copy, may I direct your attention to this link? Purchase Point of Crisis

Don’t forget to join my mailing list. I just uploaded an exclusive Black Flagged short story, available for download to members of the mailing list. Other perks include exclusive sneak peeks at upcoming work and exclusive discounts. Sign up here!

3 Comments

Filed under Book Launch

PRACTICAL PREPPING: NO APOCALYPSE REQUIRED arrives in September!

1165 Steven Konkoly ebook PRACTICAL PREPPING

UPDATE 7/30: Jeroen ten Berge has graciously stepped in and designed a most fitting cover for PRACTICAL PREPPING. Once again, I’m simply blown away by his work. Thank you, Jeroen!

PRACTICAL PREPPING: NO APOCALYPSE REQUIRED, is a light-hearted, instructional look at the basic steps ANYONE can take to prepare for a disaster. From a foreign invasion to the zombie apocalypse—just kidding. We included No Apocalypse Required in the title for a good reason. This isn’t a book about ditching the suburbs for a heavily defended, self-sufficient compound in rural Minnesota. We explore real-life concepts and solutions to REAL-LIFE problems.

Disclaimer: This is not a “HOW TO” manual for every scenario. Sure, you’ll find a few lists, and a number of highlighted suggestions, but the bulk of our book focuses on practical readiness steps you can take or tactical concepts you can embrace, without interrupting your life or breaking the bank. Randy and I offer a layered, foundational approach that can be tailored to YOUR circumstances and motivation level. Let’s face it, few people want to spend an inordinate amount of time, effort and money preparing for something that may not happen. ME INCLUDED. We’ll discuss what you can do to prepare for what will likely happen. I think you’ll be surprised by how little time, effort and hard-earned cash you’ll need to put into PRACTICAL PREPPING.

You’re probably curious how we’ll pull this off. Will it be a didactic lecture, broken into boring chapters? NO. We decided specifically to avoid that format. Randy and I have identified roughly 20 topics worth addressing, from obvious stuff like FOOD, WATER, and FIRST AID to harder topics like HOMESTEADING, COMMUNICATIONS and POWER. Each chapter will contain an excerpt from one of my books that relates to the topic, followed by two essays (one written by each of us). Randy and I share the same philosophy, but we may have a different approach. That’s what will be unique about PRACTICAL PREPPING…if I’m boring, you can switch to Randy’s essay and learn from a real expert!

Who is Randy? Randall S. Powers of Practical Tactical, a personal readiness consulting business based out of Georgia. Randy has been a consultant to The Perseid Collapse series from the start, reviewing my prepper/survival based concepts and keeping me somewhat in line with reality. I considered starting most of my essays with “Whatever Randy just said.”

With that said, I’ll leave you with a sample chapter from the book. Keep in mind that his is un-edited. The typo police have not paid this manuscript a visit. Chapter 4 contains a few great examples of the foundational elements applied throughout the book. ENJOY!

Sample Chapter (Word)

Sample Chapter (PDF)

5 Comments

Filed under Book Launch, prepping, survival

The Black Flagged Series gets a facelift by Jeroen ten Berge

Published nearly three years ago, Black Flagged’s cover has morphed to reflect the ever changing Technothriller market. Check out the evolution of Black Flagged’s cover, followed by Jeroen ten Berge’s latest design concept. I’m beyond thrilled to share these.

0440 Steven Konkoly ecover Black Flagged

81LA0IEDWjL._SL1500_

1142 Steven Konkoly ebook Black Flagged_2

 

 

 

 

 

2014 Redesign:

1142 Steven Konkoly ebook Black Flagged_21142 Steven Konkoly ebook Black Flagged_REDUX_21144 Steven Konkoly ebook Black Flagged_APEX_51149 Steven Konkoly ebook Black Flagged_VEKTOR_2

5 Comments

Filed under Cover Art