Up, up, and away! SUPERPOWERED release!

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SUPERPOWERED has been live in both Kindle edition and paperback for four days now, and I just realized that in all my social media blitzing and marketing, I somehow forgot to mention it on my blog!

My bad. But I’ll redeem myself by saying, “It’s only $0.99 during the special release period!” so that should help, right?

So, grab a copy, tell a friend, and please leave a review. Many promo sites have a minimum number before a feature, so it would really help me out to keep the momentum going.

And look! It’s doing great so far!

Not sure how I'll ever compete with the lady-porn titles, but being the only actual superhero book in the top 5 ain't half bad!
[Click to expand] Not sure how I’ll ever compete with the lady-porn titles, but being the only actual superhero book in the top 5 superhero books ain’t half bad! 
That’s it for now. I’m working on the next book in the series, but more about that later. Make sure you sign up for my new release mailing list so you don’t miss out.

PS — MURDERED is on sale for $0.99 right now as well, so if you haven’t tried to solve the mystery, I suggest that you….

Murdered (0-00-34-20)


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Book Trailer Easter Egg

The official book trailer for SUPERPOWERED launched last week. It’s an interactive trailer, where you choose your viewing experience. I’ve also added a sample decision-point for the book on its sub-pages.

And I’ve hidden an Easter egg.

If you’ve read any of my Click Your Poison titles, you know I love hiding things in my books. Well, I did the same thing for my new trailer. Through some ninja-like coding, the team at PixelTwister Studios has made the trailer more interactive. You can watch both the Hero and Villain perspectives simultaneously with something we’ve called DoubleTube.

Be a hero, be a villain, or be both?
Be a hero, be a villain, or be both?

Click the picture above, or the hyperlink here, to watch the video. Then, choose either Hero or Villain. Once the stream starts playing, you can press the V key on your desktop keyboard to cycle from the Hero video into the Villain stream, or press H while watching the Villain video to peek over at Hero side. This will only work through this Easter egg link, and will not work on the regular YouTube site.

I hope you enjoy this hidden gem as much as we did creating it! And don’t forget, SUPERPOWERED is still on pre-order for only $0.99. It’ll be here in a month!


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SUPERPOWERED now on Pre-order for only $0.99!

If you’re subscribed to my new release mailing list, then you got word this morning. SUPERPOWERED is now available on pre-order! And it’s only $0.99 until release day, when it’ll fly back up to $3.99. Go to Amazon now and Get SUPERPOWERED!

Official release date: 5/10/15
Official release date: 5/10/15

Excelsior! 1st Draft of SUPERPOWERED: Complete.

So, I broke the news on Twitter last week, but now I’m making it official.

Cover? Check.

First draft? CHECK.

It took a year, literally. The document creation time-stamp shows 16 January 2014. Almost poetic if I hadn’t originally planned on finishing last summer, but this book has taken on a life of its own. I’ve lived in Mercury City for a year! And I can’t wait to share that place with you.

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Here’s the setup: You’re in an experiment with two other volunteers, and you get one of three superpowers. That means the three paths are the powers (you “play” each one). You can be a hero or you can be villain, and you can win each way with each power. That means SUPERPOWERED will be the first Click Your Poison book to have six “Good Endings” (in quotes because half of those are, you know, Evil Endings).

What’s next? Editing. The first draft came in at 138,000 words, and I’d like to trim that down to under 120k. Sheesh. Drinking before noon is rarely acceptable, but when you’re editing, it’s required! Kidding. Mostly.

After that, it’ll go off to my trusted Beta Readers (other writers and friends well-versed in story). Then my professional editor, my formatting team, and finally on sale. I’m also working on a book trailer.

Plenty to keep me busy, but the end is in sight! After beta, I’ll have a release date. Stay tuned!


So, what do YOU think? About damn time?

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SUPERPOWERED Cover Reveal

Artist Brian Silveira delivered the goods on the SUPERPOWERED cover. And it’s Bam! Pow! Incredible.

Superpowered Final
Click me. See my stunning details.

Yes, this means we’re getting closer to having a book. No firm release date yet, but I’m nearing the end! Stay tuned.

Meanwhile, Brian is working on a landscape promo graphic (all the better to social media with, my dear), and happy to return to his graphic novel (Bun). I’ll totally post info on that when he releases it. Oh! And we may collaborate on future projects. An interactive graphic novel, perhaps?


So, what do YOU think? Intrigued? Dig the cover? Tired of waiting for the book?

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Celebrating Heroism

I’ve had this image in my head for a few years now, and as I’m writing a superhero book this year, I thought it an appropriate time to post on my blog for Patriot Day.

Now, I’m not normally one to reminisce or to be filled with sudden bouts of patriotism just because it’s a holiday. I spent nearly a decade in the military (9/11 was a big reason I joined), so I probably see these days of remembrance a bit differently from the general public. However, as part of writing SUPERPOWERED, I’ve been analyzing the nature of what it means to be a hero on just about a daily basis. Maybe that’s why the sacrifice of our first responders and soldiers has hit home a little more this year.

I’m not sure how many of you have seen the above picture before; probably quite a few. But take a look at it again, and maybe give a few seconds to consider what it means to put a total stranger’s well-being above your own. On my more cynical days, I tend to think the simplistic “Women  and Children First” should be updated to “Cancer Researchers and Nobel Laureates first” but there’s something powerful in putting value in another human being, simply because of that shared humanity. You don’t have to make the ultimate sacrifice to be a hero. Everyday heroism can be just as inspiring. And today, I hope to inspire a few of you to make a difference in everyday life.

Here’s how:

A while back, Amazon introduced their Smile Program.  Basically, whenever you shop on Amazon, if you enter “smile” instead of “www” in the web address, you may select a charity and Amazon will donate a small percentage of your purchase to that charity (at no cost to you). I use The Wounded Warrior Project for my purchases and I encourage you to do the same! This may only be a small “thank you” to those who’ve sacrificed their health for our freedoms, but if every Amazon shopper chooses to use the Smile Program, it can make a powerful difference. Obviously, there are numerous other ways to support charitable organizations, or even volunteer in your community, but I do most of my bookselling on Amazon so I wanted to help spread the word on this program.

I’d also like to take the opportunity to thank those of you who read my blog and books. After my time in the military I figured out what I wanted to do with my life, and it’s truly a gift to be typing away at my dream job day after day. I can’t say it enough: I’m only able to be a writer because you choose to be a reader! Thank you!

-James Schannep
11 September 2014


 

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Holy Batman Day, Batman!

Today, Batman turned 75 years old. The Caped Crusader’s impact on pop culture is undeniable, especially as one of the few “everyman” superheroes that can stand their ground amongst those who might otherwise seem like gods.

Old Man Batman by ArtOfWei on deviantART.

In honor of the Dark Knight’s birthday, I wanted to share an update on my own cape & cowl project, SUPERPOWERED. As the third Click Your Poison book, you’ll be Mercury City’s scourge or it’s redemption with your own set of super-human abilities. After a move to the Denver metro area, writing life has been a bit hectic, but I’m back chasing criminals down dark alleys and inventing new ways to take over the world. Right now I’m looking at a fall/winter release.

How about a birthday present? Below you’ll find a raw and unedited sample of SUPERPOWERED where you’re able to save a damsel in distress just like good ‘ol Bruce Wayne himself. Minor Spoilers follow, in that it reveals a bit about one of the three powers you can inherit in the book. This comes from a scene where you’re playing darts at a bar, right after you discover you’re able to affect the darts’ trajectory with the power of your mind…


 

…a crash from behind draws your attention back to the bar. There’s a couple deep in argument, and a broken pint glass on the floor. It’s the girl from the shuffleboard table and a man who must’ve arrived just after you.

“I said, ‘no!’” she shouts. “Leave me alone or I’m calling the cops.”

“C’mon,” the man says, just before clamping a meaty hand on her bicep.

“You’re drunk and embarrassing yourself. Shut up!” he continues, trying to pull her away. Despite his accusation, it’s he that’s slurring his words.

“Leave her alone,” you find yourself saying.

The whole bar stops to look at you.

“You—you heard what I said, and I suggest you go now if you don’t want any trouble.”

Despite the man’s imposing size and his dock worker’s strength, you’re feeling confident. The man pushes the woman off to the side, then steps towards you. It’s obvious from his body language that the time for talk has passed.

He brings a fist the size of your head in towards you and you duck in for an uppercut to his abdomen.

Here’s what would have happened before you got your powers: Your blow lands harmlessly against his barrel chest, while his own strike connects to the side of your head. He then proceeds to beat you senselessly while everyone watches, thinking, that’s why you don’t get involved. If you’re lucky, the bartender will tell him that’s enough and he’ll drag his woman from the bar, leaving you bloodied on the floor.

Now here’s what actually happens: You use the same blend of physical and psychic movements you’ve just been practicing with the darts, except now you don’t hold back. Your fist connects with his ribcage, and then your mind blasts him away, sending the hulking man over the bartop and smashing against the shelf of alcohol. You just knocked him back fifteen feet, most likely shattering his ribs and possibly collapsing a lung.

“Are you okay?” you ask the woman.

She nods, terrified. Tears and mucous stream past her tremulous lips.

You look around the rest of the bar and all the patrons shrink away from your gaze. The bartender puts a shot on the counter for you and says, “On the house.”

Like a boss, you down the alcohol, give the man a knowing nod of thanks, and leave the bar.

 

Go back and sleep it off.

 


Just a small sample, but I hope you like it! For now, I must go seek fear and injustice in the night. Happy Batman Day!