Looking Back on 2016 and Looking Forward to 2017

It’s been a heck of a year, hasn’t it folks? Don’t worry. This isn’t a post about how awful 2016 was. There are plenty of those to go around. Instead, I’m going to talk a bit about what this year looked like from the point of view of my writing and self-publishing journey. First let’s look at the new releases.

In 2016 I put out four full length titles: Temporal Contingency (Big Sigma 4), Ichor Well (Free-Wrench 3), The Redemption of Desmeres (The Book of Deacon 3.5), and Between. I can’t say any of them were blockbusters, but those of you that have read them all seem quite satisfied. The reviews I’ve gotten are positive, and while they haven’t all made back their cost, they’re still earning, so it’s just a matter of time.

Aside from my direct releases, there are also a few supplementary releases to talk about. I self-financed a reading of The D’Karon Apprentice (Book of Deacon 4). It’s the second audio book I’ve done via ACX, and though I’m thrilled with the narration and the quality of the result, it looks like it’s going to be a long time before I earn back the cost. A good performer costs money, and as it stands right now, the demand for audio editions of my stories doesn’t quite justify it.

Meanwhile, Books in Motion picked up several of my other stories for publication. This year Bypass Gemini and Unstable Prototypes released. Since they paid me an advance, technically I’ve already made a profit on those. Neat, huh?

The Great Convergence was released in Germany and has been quite successful, might I add.

In non-book news, the Science Fiction and Fantasy Marketing Podcast, which I co-host with Lindsay Buroker and Jeff Poole, passed the 100th episode. We’re developing quite a following, and I’ve heard from a number of people that it has been extremely helpful, and ranks among their favorite author podcasts. Its humbling to be of value to my fellow author types, and though Lindsay is unquestionably the driving force of the podcast, I’m happy to add what value I can.

Whenever I commission a piece of art, particularly figurines, I always get a bunch of people asking me where they can buy one. In 2016 I decided to give people that option, if they had deep enough pockets. The figurines I commission cost at least $100 a piece (often much more) but thanks to the sculpting prowess Leilia Clay and the digital artistry of Liz Landis, I was able to make Solby/Squee and Myn available in full color or one color 3D prints via Shapeways. You can also get a nifty Myn Pendant and some other stuff, if you’re interested.

While we’re on the subject, I also had some neat stickers printed, and I’ve still got some bookmarks and bookplates. You can only get those by sending me a self-addressed, stamped envelope (international folks, email me to figure out the postage alternative). Send your letters (and goodies, why not?) to:

Joseph R. Lallo
PO Box 190
Colonia, NJ 07067


So that’s the year that was. Now, let’s look ahead.

I’ve got a few things already finished and either awaiting an edit or a cover. There’s The Big Sigma Collection: Volume 1, which will release next month (hopefully). I’ve also completed Free-Wrench 4, and a story called Pizza Dragon. There’s also a short story collection called “Lone Wolf” that will include two stories, one of which is in the Book of Deacon series.

Thanks to a vote, at least Book of Deacon 5 and probably The Rise of the Red Shadow 2 will be written next year as well.

There are some new things I’m trying for 2017, too. For the first time, I’m writing something in someone else’s setting. Lindsay Buroker opened up her Fallen Empire series for Kindle Worlds, and I’ve thrown my hat in the ring to write something. I wrote the first words in that project today and I’m going to try my darnedest to get it released for the official launch in April. I’ve also written a children’s book that is being illustrated as we speak.

You can also expect to see Artificial Evolution become an audio book, as well as at least Free-Wrench, if not Skykeep as well.

Aside from the writing, what are my plans for 2017? Well, like everyone I’m hoping to get a little healthier. I wasn’t as disciplined as I’d like to be in almost any way this year, and I’m hoping I can improve that next year. That means higher word counts, and more books overall. Hopefully I can get on a better schedule, too. And frankly, the time has come to start reading more regularly. My brain needs feeding.

That’s about it for me! Hope you had a good 2016 and here’s hoping for an even better 2017.