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Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Book Signing and Book Status



new reader DawnNew Reader Diana Blossom HillDanielle Blossom HillNew reader Troy BN Spokane

New Readers:   Dawn B&N Northtown                                                  Diana & Danielle B&N Blossom Hill, San Jose, CA                                             Troy B&N Spokane, WA


Book Signing Notes


Between November 10th and December 16th, I signed copies of my books at Barnes & Noble Bookseller stores at the Northtown Mall, Spokane; Eastside store, Spokane Valley; and the Blossom Hill store, San Jose, California. Other stores where I signed included: Yoke's Fresh Market, Liberty Lake, Washington; Liberty Lake Chevron, Liberty Lake, WA and EntertainMART, Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. As always, the Barnes & Noble signings were very successful. Liberty Lake Chevron and Yoke's were so-so (nevertheless, both stores want me to return). 


Once again, EntertainMART gave me another big surprise. Besides selling many books, they had paid me for in advance at the last signing, (They paid me for twenty-one on October 7th), they paid me for an additional ten (The Broken Lance and The Wolf of Britannia, Part I) when I conducted another signing at their store, Nov. 18th. Book manager, Marie, said, "We know you will return at future dates until you've sold them all." Needless to say, I will return for another signing, Saturday, February 3rd, 2018. I will also be returning to the other B&N stores as well for encore signings.  Management in each store was pleased with my efforts and numbers sold.


During 2017 I conducted more than forty book signing events (several were not listed because I added them at the last minute). By far the most successful signings were at a select number of Barnes & Noble Bookseller stores. Management at those particular locations have very supportive allowing me to return just about as often as I want. EntertainMART has shown similar support. Although I have not sold as many books at Yoke's Fresh Market and Liberty Lake Chevron, management in those places have been just as supportive wanting me to return as well. This will carry over into 2018 as I am in the process of lining up more events. It will be even better when my next historical novel, The Peacekeeper, is released sometime this Spring.


The Peacekeeper Status  Roman Soldier with Sword Shield


Once again I will be working with Sunbury Press Editor, Janice Rayhem, who will be editing my forthcoming historical novel, The Peacekeeper. This is the second half of the duo-logy featuring The Broken Lance. She edited three of my other novels: The Wolf of Britannia, Part I & II, and The Broken Lance. She will begin work on it in January. At this point I don't know how long the process will take as it usually means at least two-three reviews before the manuscript is finalized for publication. So, it will probably be ready sometime early Spring. You will notice that above is a picture of a Roman soldier kneeling. This is the  photo that will used for a painting of the same one. This in turn will be the book cover.


Return to Britannia (Working Title) Notes Overview Roman London

                                                                   Overview Roman London



Work continues at a slow pace as I fill out my first three chapters and work on chapters four and five. The main character, Macha (The Sign of the Eagle) is attacked by a lone assassin in chapter 3, but she escapes unscathed. She has accompanied her husband, Titus, to Britannia, who is investigating a triple homicide. It turns out there are other people out there who want Macha dead for reasons unrelated to her husband's investigation. As the story proceeds, all hell will break loose. It will take approximately two years to complete this next book.


New underwater discoveries in Greece reveal ancient Roman engineering Underwater Corinth Greece

                                                                                                              Roman underwater Corinth, Greece



New archaeological excavations at the ancient port of Corinth have uncovered evidence of large-scale Roman engineering. Named Lechaion, the port was one of a pair that connected the city of ancient Corinth to Mediterranean trade networks. Lechaion is located on the Gulf of Corinth, while Kenchreai is positioned across the narrow Isthmus of Corinth on the Aegean Sea. These two strategic harbours made Corinth a classical period power, but the Romans destroyed the city in 146 BC when conquering Greece. Julius Caesar rebuilt the city and its harbours in 44 BC, ushering in several centuries of prosperity. Recent excavations by the Lechaion Harbour Project have revealed the impressive engineering of the Roman Empire. 


For further information see link: Discovered Underwater Ancient Roman Engineering



Roman Holiday - Saturnalia 


This is a repeat from last year, but it is worth re-running again. 


December 17th - The "Saturnalia" Roman Holiday Saturnalia


This day is for special religious observance, being the first day of the Saturnalia, the Roman festival that honors Saturn (Cronus), and which is one of the most festive and uninhibited that the ancient Romans celebrated.

The holiday began celebrated with a sacrifice at the Temple of Saturn in the Roman Forum and a public banquet, followed by private gift-giving, continual partying, and a carnival atmosphere that overturned Roman social norms: The poet Catullus called it "the best of days." For further reading go to the Ancient World Notes page for the complete article.


Personal Notes - Two




Thoughts on Being a Writer Thoughts on being a writer




Below is an article I originally posted on Face Book about being an author. I have revised it a little but the main essence is still present.


Many of you know me as a writer of historical novels. You may also know I am one who likes model railroading, Roman history, horses, weight lifting, etc.


For many years my first passion has been writing. I realize a lot of you have no interest in that or any other literary activities. I respect that, we all have different interests. But at age seventy-five, like my other activities, it gives me reason to live and keep going on, I'm not one to sit around doing nothing.


I have a confession to make. I am not a natural-born writer. Every page I write is a struggle of creation. Every page means re-writing and more re-writing. And I am not the most eloquent writer. I am slow; a plodder. It takes me a long time to produce a compelling (I hope), readable work. It is why I continue to attend the writers support group, Red Ink Fictioneers, for so many years. This group of established authors keeps me honest; learning about writing fiction.


Over the years I have observed many perspective writers who were endowed with far greater talent than mine, who gave up before completing what would have been great books. Why? Because they were quitters, they lacked self-discipline and persistence.


In the meantime, I kept plugging away, continuing to learn from my mistakes, despite one set-back and rejection after another.

I am grateful to have found a publisher, Sunbury Press, a traditional small press, who believed in me, and gave me a chance to succeed. Even then, the editors assigned to my novels, made sure to get the best out of me. In each one of my four published novels, I did major rewrites of chapters, added new chapters and changed endings. The goal was not a good novel but a great novel.


Whether or not I have succeeded, I am not sure. However, I will continue to promote my novels (some of you FB friends find it boring) and will to continue to write. This is my passion, and this with the support of my wife, Liz, an my other interests keeps an old guy like me going.


I know the writers out there will understand, if no one else does.


Note Number Two - A New Horse in the Family (Rescue Horse) LizandZiggy.jpgSteve with new horse Ziggy

                                                                                                                  Liz and Steve with Rescue Horse Ziggy


On December 13th, Liz received her new rescue horse, Ziggy  This horse was scheduled for a slaughter house down in Mexico when Liz learned about her from a friend who did the actual rescue. Liz visited the horse and immediately purchased for a very minimal price. He is underweight and needs more work done on his hooves (our farrier already did a lot, but more will be done), but otherwise he is in good shape. He is twenty years old. He has found a good home with us. We now have three horses. The other two are Annie, a registered Dun paint mare and Darby a bay registered Quarter horse. Ziggy will fit right in be spoiled rotten like the other two, the way we like it.


That's it for now. I want to wish you all the Happiest of Holidays and very prosperous New Year! Until next time, Salve Atque Vale! Hail and Farewell!


--Jess Hughes







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