23 July 2023

by | Jul 23, 2023 | Random Thoughts, Writing | 2 comments

Good morning?

I’m writing this at 1:22am, the morning of Sunday the 23rd. I always struggle with the salutation for this time of the day. ‘Good night’ seems more like a goodbye, even though it is most assuredly night outside. ‘Good morning’ feels better, even though I feel most people might not see half-past one in the morning as actual ‘morning.’

The main thought on my mind as I write this post is the announcement that I’m closing my Patreon at Midnight tonight, which will technically be Monday the 24th. Patreon has been a fun experiment, and I’m grateful for all the support people have given me through that.


More than once, I have taken time away from my writing, simply because I realized that I was behind on posting chapters. The most recent time it happened, I decided my Patreon page should augment or support my writing, not my writing supporting my Patreon page.

My writing is one of the most important parts of my life. That will not change, not unless there is a substantial change to who I am (which I do not foresee), so I feel the time has come to end the Great Patreon Experiment. I have already removed the link to it from the main page of this site, as well as removed the references to it from the new titles that had it (Cole & Srexx – The Complete SeriesThe Fall of Skullkeep).

Speaking of which, The Fall of Skullkeep goes live in something like nine (9) days: the first of August. It is my first major publication since Consular Times back in September of 2021, and I have to say that it feels very good to be writing and publishing again. I have a lot of stories in progress, including Tempus (Primogenitor Saga #4). Yeah… I know I said I didn’t want to write it yet in a post a while back… but… things change.

Publishing it will give me a little breathing room to focus on other stories for a few months… like the shared world I’m working up or the new Sci-Fi I started on my mom’s birthday last year. Releasing Tempus before the end of the year will also give me time to figure out where to take the Primogenitor Saga from there.

Oh… and while I’m thinking about it…

*** Important Note ***

I have received a couple emails lately asking about Ursus. This is an excellent case of how I learned not to announce titles before I’m actively writing the story. It is highly unlikely that I will ever write–let alone publish–Ursus (Primogenitor #4), because Primogenitor #4 will be titled Tempus as the above paragraphs indicate. A few chapters into the story, I realized that Ursus was not the correct title for it. I have since updated the Consular Times eBook, but if you haven’t updated it since you first downloaded it, you might not have seen the change.

*** End of Important Note ***

Right, then… moving on!

On second thought, I’m not quite sure where to move on to, at this point. I started this post to announce and explain the closer of my Patreon page, which I have done, and jogged my memory to make a clear statement about Ursus versus Tempus, which I have also done.

I think this is a good place to end the post, so I’ll wish you well and get back to my stories.

I hope the days treat you and yours well. Stay safe out there… at least safer than me.  😉


  1. Mark Robeson

    Question for you, the stories that you call your Newsletter Stories (Lone Wolf & Ships in the night), would those be considered “short stories” or would you classify them as something else?

    I enjoyed both of them, and as you’ve mentioned recently about writing short stories I was curious. Both were fun and I can see that as a writer you sometimes might have ideas for side stories, but they just don’t fit into the current book so they could be like Lone Wolf, short side stories.

    • Rob

      Hi, Mark,

      I classify anything under around 17,000 words as a short story. The Fires of Aurelius, at around 32k, is a novella. Some people call those short novels, though.

      Traditional Publishing uses word counts to classify fiction thus:
      0 to 1500 words: Flash Fiction
      1501 to 7500-ish: Short Stories
      7500 to 20,000: Novellettes (but often only Sci-Fi uses this one)
      20,000 to 40,000: Novellas or Short Novels
      40,000+ words: Novels

      I personally prefer this classification:
      0 to 15,000-ish words: Short Stories
      15,000-ish to 40,000: Novellas
      40,000+ words: Novels

      Ships in the Night is 6,293 words. Lone Wolf is 10,941 words. Mistaken Identity, Sam Colton Mysteries #1, has 6,915 words. The Key to Happiness (Sam Colton #2) has 11,291 words, and A Ghost After Sis, which will join my Newsletter Stories next month (August 2023), has 4,265 words. Everything else I’ve written and/or published is a novel, as Fires is the only other title under 70,000 words.

      Back in the Pulp and Paperback eras (think 1900 to roughly the 1970s) the average novel length was around 40,000 to 50,000 words, and people loved them. However, I think it was in the late 70s to mid-80s that Trad Pub started wanting their writers to write larger novels… which eventually became the doorstops of Science Fiction and Fantasy that I grew up reading. I didn’t even know the short story markets existed until I was in my twenties, and by then, I was so used to reading novels that short fiction just wasn’t as satisfying to me.

      Damn… this reply is almost a post on its own, if you only go by length or word count. 🙂

      Hope this answers your question!

      Best wishes to you and yours.



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