Creative Aces Publishing Is Live!

Publishing news isn’t rare, but making an announcement yourself is, and I’m so thrilled to say I have some news today!

Creative Aces Publishing was a brainchild I first had in 2015, and thanks to other aces over the years we published two community projects: What You See, an art book featuring two dozen aces, and Unburied Fables, an LGBTQ charity anthology benefiting The Trevor Project.

If you heard of us before, here’s how we’ve changed since then. Unlike other indie publishers, we seek to build from a community standpoint. Not only saying we put authors first, but also paying them a highly competitive rate unheard of for a group so small. Offering upwards of 50% royalty, and sometimes even an author advance.

As a full-service publisher, authors can also expect a professional looking cover design, comprehensive editing, a personalized marketing plan, training and support as an author from signing and beyond at no cost.

All made possible by a slow and steady mentality that makes sure you don’t get lost in a sea of other authors. Because of this, we aren’t currently open for submissions, but already have signed authors and will be making more announcements soon.

If you have any questions please contact us at info@creativeacespublishing.com.

Here’s what this means for anyone who knows me personally, I’ve been dealt a hand of cards that allows me to take the project to a level I always wanted and make it a full-fledged publisher.

I’ve been working for various publishers since 2015, and love helping authors. But I also see areas where many barely even get a chance because of factors around their disability or identity. As the company’s co-founder and creative director, I can’t fix the industry as a whole, but I can set a standard I believe in. One who’s core goal takes pride in creating art and supporting those artists.

What A Joke

I’m going to talk about strong writing today, but first, I have a joke for you. So a white comedian walks into a bar. He steps on the stage and says: Racism! The racists and white allys™ laugh, no one else does. In the news that night, the white comedian is applauded for his progressiveness.

I first heard of this idea when watching a documentary. I forget what it was, but it stated that if a comedian tells a racist joke that everyone in the audience laughs. Those who aren’t racist, understand the context and that it was “just a joke”. But the racist in the room hears everyone is laughing and believes everyone thinks the same as them. And why not? Everyone is having fun right now. Right??

A lesson from my favorite editor is that words have a weight on the page. I don’t mean socially, I mean for readability. If you can say something in fewer words and still convey your meaning you’ve done your job. You actually don’t need much more advice because that one suggestion covers a lot of it.

Which brings me to my point today. To have strong and diverse writing you can’t just say haha racism! And leave it as that, because the people experiencing it don’t find it funny. Nor do LGBT+ people when they are included, but killed off or made the joke. Nor do rape victims when they have to explain to you why something is bad, because haha rape sucks, obviously? Oh, that didn’t come off on screen that way? Oh well, there’s no more time! 

Mirroring a trope is not changing the trope. It is not calling out the trope. And we as writers, cannot assume we are better or greater than every writer who has done it before. If you are going to have homophobia, or racism, or sexism, etc in your narrative you need to not only spend the time and words on that, but also the time to draw a huge circle around it with shining lights that flash bad, bad, bad.

I see so many TV shows lately getting applauded, and congratulated for “facilitating the discussion” when in reality the show didn’t do anything. These “discussions” have been happening for centuries. And while I can’t stop TV studios from doing these things, I can tell you that strong writing comes from the puzzle you assembled. Not the pieces laid out so your readers can collectively put together.

Nor as consumers, should we agree that they are doing anything remarkable either. That’s a lie we tell ourselves to make enjoying something that would otherwise hurt our conscience.

And as writers, let’s do this soon, because the people hurting the most aren’t laughing.

#WattpadBooksAreRealBooksToo

#WattpadBooksAreRealBooksToo started with a misplaced and insulting internet comment, as many hashtag movements do these days. If you didn’t know, my co-author and I write a science fiction series on the free to read site. It’s a video game inspired novel called Bone Diggers. Since I have one foot in the publishing world, and another in the Wattpad camp I feel like I’m qualified to weigh in on the subject. But, I’m not here to talk about Bone Diggers today, at least not directly.

There are obviously many differences between the two paths, just like how a serialized newspaper story in the old days was different than a novel. But these differences don’t matter. Writers put in as much heart and soul into their Wattpad stories as any other writer does. All writing is an act of creation, and that creation has value no matter where you end up posting it.

I’m thrilled to announce that Bone Diggers has recently been handpicked to be featured on the site, but that doesn’t mean it was any less real before this. Just like how a any well written novel that isn’t widely known isn’t less meaningful. Wattpad specifically has given me countless things that my publishing deal can’t. It’s a trial run in ways, and very real in many others.

Last year, I posted a chapter of Bone Diggers every single week. It wasn’t as spotless or query tested as Hello World which is going to be published with Pandamoon, but I was given something I never thought. Each week I felt progress, I felt that I was building to something great. Bad weeks had a beacon of hope at the end of them thanks to Wattpad.

We all quickly learn that the traditional route is slow. It can take years to get a book deal, and while Wattpad books might not be traditional, they have as much hope and longing from the writer to share and connect with people as any other piece does. Wattpad books are as real as the writers creating them, and can sometimes give a momentum like nothing else can.

What do you think? Does the platform where something is posted dictate value, or does writing always speak for itself no matter where it is found? And remember you can check out all of Bone Diggers over on Wattpad!

2015: 50% Complete

Today rings in the half way mark of the year, which also makes this Friday the 6 month anniversary of Bone Diggers being available on Wattpad! I’m so excited to see the ever growing following this story has. It’s been something hugely important to Andy and I for years, and it’s really amazing to be able to share that with everyone. To see the tweets, comments, even worry over the characters is really what every writer wishes for.

So on this anniversary of sorts, I have a few announcements today. The first, welcome to this brand new site! You’ll still be able to follow along with us on social media, but now we can connect in a new way too. Another new feature is that freelance services are also for the first time being offically offered. You can check out more infomation about that under “Design Services.” The last announcement today to celebrate the 6 month mark is to show our appreciation with a giveaway another video game book and some extra goodies from me!

 

Giveaway Includes:

  • Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
  • Three Chapter Critique
  • Space Invader Stickers

    Stay tuned for more giveaways in the feature!