Confessions Of A Freelance Penmonkey

Coming Soon:


A big fat book of essays about writing, freelancing, and storytelling found originally here at terribleminds. Over 50 essays, all revised, all featuring new content in the form of addenda / commentary / random thoughts / additional profanity / poopy handprints on the walls of my plexiglass enclosure.

It’ll be popping up on Kindle… well, let’s just aim for “in the next two weeks,” as I have some of the additional materials to finish. Further, it’ll be available as PDF directly through terribleminds.

I’d also like to get it on the Nook. Taking advice on that should anybody have it: I found the process to get to ePub and the B&N store a not-entirely-pleasant one, and will accept any and all tips.

At present, I’ve no plans for a print version, but I’ll take opinions on that, too.

Smashwords I’m thinking can, I dunno, go suck an egg.

That lovely cover is done by the inimitable Amy Houser (her website here). Amy also did the cover for IRREGULAR CREATURES, a cover which still makes me squee with delight. We had a different cover initially, which I still love (maybe Amy will give me permission to show it to you), involving a froth-mouthed monkey about to throw a typewriter at your head. But this design she did feels like it really popped and contained a lot of the little nibbly bits that go into the writing life (chief amongst them: weeping, booze, coffee). Plus, c’mon: a sugar skull monkey? With a beard? This totally sucks unicorn.

Anyway. Keep your grapes peeled, word-nerds, inkslingers, and penmonkeys.

You’ve been asking for this book. So buckle up, here it comes.


45 responses to “Confessions Of A Freelance Penmonkey”

  1. Beard the fuck on. This unicorn sucking book will go right next to my Big Red fantasy reference and copies of “Characters and Viewpoint”. In spirit, at least, since I can’t get a physical copy.

    Now would be a great time to yell “to the cloud!” and expect results, but since I am neither a) magical or b) stuck in a Microsoft commercial, I will just say that you are one hoopy frood.

  2. *throws up the horns* BTFO, indeed. You heard I just got a Kindle machine and decided to release this. Chuck, it’s flattering, but I’m a married lady and you’ve got a kid on the way. :-p

    Still, this is going right into my collection on release day.

  3. I was so going to steal this artwork and just photoshopcrop your name right on outta there. But since it’s Amy’s artwork, I can’t do that. I curse you for telling me.

  4. Sweet baby unicorns that a hella good cover! That makes me want to pick that cover right up, even if I didn’t know what was in it (drunken profanity goodness, that’s what)!


  5. Publishing on the Nook is a PITA, no doubt.

    Does it have any special formatting like bullet points, etc? If not, it should be much easier. But the Nook converter is still very tricky. I just wrote a book on publishing & marketing realities with a section on eBooks, and now I offer consulting services for such things. I use Sigil to edit the ePub, and it seems to help.

    Email me if you’d like, and I’ll get it up there for you. Gratis. Just because you’re so fucking awesome and such a continuing inspiration.

    • @Christine:

      Rock-sauce. Thanks for that (and thanks too to the mighty James Meltzer who offered me some PubIt advice earlier via Twitter). I may take you up on that, we’ll see. 😀

      — c.

  6. Looks good!
    For print, you might check out I’ve heard good things about them on that. Martha Wells redid one of her out of print books through them.

  7. You mean all of your fabulous advice compiled in one easy to read book-type thingy? Very cool. And the artwork is very Dia de los Muertos. Which I love. So…can there be a Dia de los Monos? 😀

  8. I need a cover this awesome. The one for my upcoming book is a spoof of the Phelps
    “Gays ur Gay” family signs. I just can’t draw, and I’m a web designer.

  9. You need help getting this bad boy into an ePub that can pass preflight and all that jazz? Drop me a line. I haven’t tried uploading stuff through PubIt! yet, but I’m DAMN good at making clean ePubs, which should be all that matters for Nook…

  10. Yes, I have been asking for this book. Every night, on my knees. I think the neighbors are getting a little sick of the shrieking.

    Oh, fantastic cover!

    Bring it forth, sir, bring it forth.

  11. Nook would be great! I uploaded Irregular Creatures onto my Nook as a PDF and reading it that way…works well, but of course, full Nook format would be the Llamas lips!

  12. When I sent my first novel, Burritos and Gasoline to Kindle as an e-book, I thought that would be it for me. But a woman I know from a neighboring town put a post up on the fan page asking if it would be available for her Nook.

    I’m a capitalist, so I hate to pass up a dollar that’s laying around loose. But I also hate to disappoint a potential reader. So I looked into the process of uploading to Barnes and Noble so that my book would be available for the Nook, too.

    I found the process to be surprisingly simple. The page I went to, and ultimately uploaded my files through was located at:

    The entire process took less than half an hour. However, although my e-book showed up on the Barnes and Noble site within a matter of hours, it was two days or more before the book could be downloaded. I will admit that I found that waiting process to be frustrating, and at least a little embarrassing, because B&N made it possible to purchase the product. You just couldn’t actually download the full file. Gulp!

    Ultimately it has worked out well, however. And I’m happy to say the book has been selling for the Nook better than I anticipated. So the upload was worth it.

    Follow the directions on the website EXACTLY – and you should be fine.

    Good luck all around. May you sell millions.

  13. Wow! What a cover. Looks great, Chuck. I’m sure it will be hilariously informative, and no doubt one I’ll happily recommend to clients. Count me in.

  14. Slightly unrelated question here uncle Chuck, but what’s the dealio with using the pen-monkey cover art as a tattoo design? I’m in the process of assembling a collection of images to have worked into a sleeve – stuff that has relevance to me and my life – and that image is just so….right! I’m not about to start ripping other people’s designs and would only use it it I had permission, so if you could let me know whether or not it’s doable, I’d be uber-grateful.

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