Deadline Day

As you can see, today is March 31. As you may also see, Conventions is not out today. However, I knew a few weeks ago that the deadline was going to have to give – by a few days or weeks.

I had set “March 31” as publication day in my head sometime late last summer. If I may offer one piece of writing advice based on my own experience, it is this: you must give yourself a deadline that you take seriously. It focuses you on finishing the work. Without one, I assure you that you will drift – and may never finish your book.

Screen shot of Kindle site.

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Around The Canarian Pool

Returned from our tiring, dusty Tenerife cliff walk on Thursday, we’d decided a plunge in the apartment complex pool was called for. And it was perfect. Indeed, just what we needed.

Free Stock Photo: Swimming pool.
Free Stock Photo: Swimming pool.

After, refreshed, we’d taken a few moments drying off poolside. A short while later, we started the stroll back up to the apartment. We had only planned on popping down for a dip.

“Don’t tell me you didn’t see,” my wife chuckled as we approached our apartment door. “Yep, definitely not the norm in America.”

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When You Write Of Family [UPDATED]

The idea for this hit me last night [October 7]. It’s a tiny personal tribute to my (now late) mother’s cousin, who died unexpectedly on Sunday evening in Albany. She isn’t fictionalized in my novels; but “Doreen” is inspired by and combines a variety of relations, and that cousin was one of them.

So if you’d like to download the opening Atlantic Lives novel for free on Kindle, it’s here at and

The back and front covers for "Passports" - the print version. [Copyright Β© 2013, R. J. Nello.]
The back and front covers for “Passports” – the print version. [Copyright Β© 2013, R. J. Nello.]

It’s free as well at all the other Amazon international sites too, of course. It will be until March 12. If you do download it, I hope you enjoy it. πŸ™‚

UPDATE: March 10:

1) We attended the funeral yesterday. It was as funerals usually are – you wish you were somewhere else. The one positive since my mother’s death is many of us younger, distant cousins, have become closer than in decades.

2): About future free promos. The 2nd and 3rd novels, Frontiers and Distances respectively, will never be available for free on Kindle. I think one 100,000 word novel, the first (over a year’s work), is enough. Don’t you? πŸ˜‰

E-Books Are Here To Stay

Have you read any good books lately (besides any of mine)? πŸ˜‰ If so, on which “platform?” E-book or paperback?

Screen capture of Twitter.
Screen capture of Twitter.

Thus tweets the editor of the New York Times Book Review. Some replying have questioned it, pointing out for instance that it is just one year, and also that many e-books are “overpriced” by large publishers while many paperbacks are “priced to sell.” Yet it does once more address that tantalizing question: E-books or paperbacks?

I hate talking money. However, occasionally we do all alas have to nod to it in life. Many readers might not know: Kindle and other e-readers have been a real boost for us lesser-knowns and those looking to break into authoring, who often indie publish to get a start.

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And Enjoy The Read

Good morning (again) from upstate New York’s chilly (24F/ -4C overnight) Catskills:

Catskills view. [Photo by me, 2015.]
Catskills view. [Photo by me, 2015.]

Days from publication, I was re-reading parts of Distances in paperback last night. (I’m not entirely sure why: I’m not changing anything at this point!) As I’ve said before, I do find there is some intangible difference between following a novel on paper as opposed to on a screen. A paperback is a better read in some ways, while the ebook is in others, and I have found that again.

Having done it three times now, I find wrapping up a novel to be an emotional letdown as well. It marks an end of a long journey. There was a time that there was NOTHING on the page, and that seems such a long time ago now.

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“Passports”: Free For Five Days

It’s just a little something. It’s hardly a huge deal. But in memory of my mother (she as you know died on October 26), and my novelist uncle (he as you know died on October 12), the first novel, Passports, is free on Kindle for five days – through November 7.

To get it, click on the link (that applies):

It’s at all the other Amazons, too.

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On Which Shelf?

Yesterday I received another one of those Amazon marketing emails. Once again Passports was at the top of the list. Obviously, Amazon knows I have looked at that page.

Naturally, more of “the competition” follows:


I screen captured the long page in two sections. It can be intriguing to see where your novels end up “shelved.” Originally I saw them mostly as “general fiction,” but subcategories are inevitable and eventually I found that “romance” had to do as a major one.

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Six Words Never To Ask A Novelist

….but they are employed regularly anyway. And as the Daily (w)rite wonders, how often is the question answered this way?:

Screen capture of Daily (w)rite.
Screen capture of Daily (w)rite.

Once you get beyond the “blank page,” the problem then turns into that question not being easily answerable.

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Who Doesn’t Love A Pre-Order Discount?

Ah, social media. If you are here now, chances are this isn’t your first visit: you’ve probably been here before – and perhaps quite a few befores. You deserve SOMETHING for that. πŸ™‚

Free Stock Photo: A beautiful woman acting surprised.
Free Stock Photo: A beautiful woman acting surprised.

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The Catalog To Date

All of the mornings that started at 4 am. All of the times you shook your head as you typed away, alone, struggling to get that perfect paragraph, perfect sentence, perfect word. Through the untimely death of a dear friend. Through all of the self-doubt and gazing at the screen and wondering, “Is this worth doing?”

But there is a point to it all. Here’s the “R. J. Nello” Kindle titles listing on

Screen capture of’s “R. J. Nello” Kindle page.

Three nearly 100,000 word novels each in 3 years has been a massive intellectual and life challenge. It began in late 2012, when I was feverishly tap, tap, tapping the first brainstorms of Passports sneakily on my laptop while sitting in front of the TV in our old house in Christchurch. (The first chapters I recall writing were the World Trade Center and subway chapters.) Because I wanted a “full book” well underway before I wanted to risk revealing to anyone what I was doing (in case nothing came of the initial writing), I told no one what I was up to for about six months.

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