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becke_davis
Posts: 35,755
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


EdKovacs wrote:

becke_davis wrote:

EdKovacs wrote:

becke_davis wrote:

Ed - When you were young, is this the career you envisioned for yourself? (Both as a writer, and with your day job.) If not, what did you plan to be when you grew up?


Becke,

 

When I was very young I waned to be a policeman.  I have come close to that profession!

 

Later I wanted to be a radio announcer.  Goal achieved!

 

Then in college I decided I wanted to be a writer. 

 

So I suppose I have achieved 2.5 out of three. :smileyhappy:


2.5 out of three is pretty darn amazing! 

 

How did you get into your current line of work?

 

How (and why, I might add) did you decide to write a book - and then find time to write it - when you were already so busy with this stressful and time-consuming job?


Becke,

 

Back in the 1990s I started writing a novel--my first attempt--but didn't finish it.  It was a mystery with a surfing PI based in Redondo Beach, California.  Since I had always previously finished what I started, it kind of spooked me and kept me from wrting novels until UNSEEN FORCES, which came out in late 2004.

 

When you come back tomorrow, can you tell us more about UNSEEN FORCES?

 

Now I can say that working on a novel is the most natural and satisfying feeling I have ever had as a writer.  Puzzling out the plot of a mystery or thriller or action adventure story is challenging, surprising and ultimately very satisfying, although my ex-wife was always unnerved by the inordinate amount of time I spent thinking about fresh ways to kill people.

 

I think that's a problem endemic to all mystery writers!

 

Anyway, if you get hold of a story, or a story gets hold of you, what difference does it make what your day job is, right?  One simply has to press ahead.

 

Soooo true!

 

STORM DAMAGE is unusual because it took me three years to finish it.  I worked 12 hour shifts, six or seven days a week for different security companies over that three year period.  I never had a chance to just write full-time.  I spent two and a half years in New Orleans and seriously started working on the book in 2007, the same year I co-founded a security company that specialized in providing training, including to local SWAT teams.  So I was pretty busy.  But if I worked nightshift, I could usually spend a couple of hours each shift writing, while still fulfilling my duties.

 

It sounds like STORM DAMAGE was a true labor of love!

 

In early 2009 I was working a security job on the most heavily drug-trafficked stretch of the Mexican border.  I’d been re-writing whenever I could and finally felt that STORM DAMAGE was finished.  I e-mailed it to three people for feedback.  None of them responded or acknowledged even receiving it.  I waited months and began to believe that the book must be terrible, that these people were too uncomfortable to tell me how bad it was.

 

They never even acknowledged receiving it? That's awful! Did you ever find some reliable critique partners? It's great to have someone you can rely on for honest feedback.

 

Late in 2009 I was working a security contract on the French Riviera and reread the manuscript on my notebook computer while drinking café crèmes on the Med.  I thought it read pretty well, but then, I sold my gold coins when gold was $350 an ounce, so what do I know?  

 

LOL!!!

 

I decided to hire a real editor and get an unbiased take on whether I had pearls or swine.  Thank God for the Internet and Pure Dumb Luck.  Through the search-engine-whose-name-shall-not-be-spoken, I located a gentleman, who seemed like he might be okay.  It was kind of like ordering Viagra online from Surinam; maybe you’re getting the real thing, maybe it’s baby laxative.

 

 

  I initially had no clue that his clients included major heavyweight super-talented authors.

 

For some reason—probably because he felt sorry for a clueless dolt like me—he reluctantly agreed to read my first 50 pages.  He was loaded with other work, and when he finally got back to me, he said he would edit my manuscript and that if the rest of STORM DAMAGE was as good as the first 50 pages, he would do his best to help me get a literary agent.

 

WOW!!! That's fabulous! (And so, so rare!)

 

His subsequent editing was trenchant and invaluable, and within a very short time—I was in Thailand by then for the anti-government rioting in spring of 2010—I not only had a great agent, but a two book deal with St. Martin’s Press. 

Many of us here have a special fondness here for St. Martin's Press because Paul Hochman, formerly my supervisor at BN.com, started working there around January of this year. You may come across him sometime - I think he's working behind the scene on their blogs (like Criminal Element).

 

Moderator
becke_davis
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


EdKovacs wrote:

Sorry about the time zone difference, but I'm all in and have to crash.  If any of your readers gets in to a bookstore (Barnes and Noble, of course) maybe they could take a snap of my book?  And post it?

 

Cheers,

Ed


I was at a big Barnes & Noble book signing all day Saturday - I checked to see if your book had come out early by any chance, but no such luck.

 

My schedule is booked solid for the next several days but if I can get to a B&N store next week (there's not one close to my house, unfortunately) I'll take a picture and email it to you. (And post it here as well!)

 

To our participants: If any of you see Ed's book at a B&N store, please take a picture of it and let me know. I'll have to post the picture here for you since B&N only allows moderators to upload pictures from personal computers. Thank you!

Author
EdKovacs
Posts: 60
Registered: ‎09-12-2011
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Thanks in advance for any help with the photos, Becky.  My nephew got hold of one, I'll email him to take a photo.

 

It's early in the morning here and we have another slam bang day on tap, so I won't be able to post until I get back "home" tonight.  I have many stories to tell about UNSEEN FORCES!

 

cheers,

Ed

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leisure_reader
Posts: 236
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Good Morning, Evening, Afternoon (pick one) Ed

 

Welcome to the forum.  Congrats on release day.  It seems after reading everything here on the forum, I have determined that your life must be far from boring.  I look forward to picking up your latest

 

J

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
- Eleanor Roosevelt

Moderator
becke_davis
Posts: 35,755
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


EdKovacs wrote:

Thanks in advance for any help with the photos, Becky.  My nephew got hold of one, I'll email him to take a photo.

 

It's early in the morning here and we have another slam bang day on tap, so I won't be able to post until I get back "home" tonight.  I have many stories to tell about UNSEEN FORCES!

 

cheers,

Ed


Ed - I feel bad taking up so much of your time when you are obviously working every waking hour!

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becke_davis
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Ed - I've got a question for you, whenever you check in. (Hopefully I haven't asked it already - I'm a tad frazzled right now, trying to meet garden writing deadlines while also keeping up with Christmas-related chores.)

 

Anyway, here's the question:

 

What were your favorite books when you were growing up? Which books inspired your fondness for mystery/thrillers/suspense?

Author
EdKovacs
Posts: 60
Registered: ‎09-12-2011
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


leisure_reader wrote:

Good Morning, Evening, Afternoon (pick one) Ed

 

Welcome to the forum.  Congrats on release day.  It seems after reading everything here on the forum, I have determined that your life must be far from boring.  I look forward to picking up your latest

 

J


Thanks!  Yes, I'm seldom bored.  I'll post some stories about my research for UNSEEN FORCES and you might get an idea of how interesting things can get...:smileyhappy:

Author
EdKovacs
Posts: 60
Registered: ‎09-12-2011
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


becke_davis wrote:

Ed - I've got a question for you, whenever you check in. (Hopefully I haven't asked it already - I'm a tad frazzled right now, trying to meet garden writing deadlines while also keeping up with Christmas-related chores.)

 

Anyway, here's the question:

 

What were your favorite books when you were growing up? Which books inspired your fondness for mystery/thrillers/suspense?


Becke,

 

In high school I read Ian Flemming's books, and they got me hooked on espionage thrillers.  I remember some old TV show from WAAAAY back, I think it was called "Assignment: Danger" or something like that.  I became entralled with the notion of the old colonial cities/capitols and wanted to visit all of them in the Far East: Manilla, Rangoon, Singapore, Bangkok, Phnom Penh, Saigon, Hong Kong, Shanghai...

 

I have now crossed most of them off my list.  I've lived in Phnom Penh, spent a lot of time in Bangkok, Tokyo, Seoul, Ulan Bator, and Hong Kong.  Love Saigon and Singapore.  I've been to Burma, but still have to get to Rangoon.

 

I remember seeing a Bond film set in Japan, back when Sean Connery was Bond.  I loved the exotic locales and the the whole action/adventure experience.  It's one of the reasons I am wanting to do the sequel to UNSEEN FORCES, because I really like espionage action thrillers set against a global backdrop. 

Author
EdKovacs
Posts: 60
Registered: ‎09-12-2011
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Here is some of the advance praise I got for UNSEEN FORCES:

 

ACCLAIM FOR ED KOVACS’

 

UNSEEN FORCES

 

“Indiana Jones on steroids.  Kovacs adroitly embroiders an intellectual tapestry encompassing geography, history, and phenomenology all accented with action and intrigue.”

-Col. John Alexander, author of Future War, and The Warrior’s Edge,

 

“Kovacs makes fine use of his screenwriting background – weaving Egyptian mythology, psychic spying, and a quest for the secret of eternal life into a spellbinding thriller that will keep you riveted well past midnight.  Unseen Forces seems destined for the big screen… but we all know the book’s always better than the movie.”

              -Terry Perkins, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch

 

“Ed Kovacs wrote the first movie about the U.S. military’s secret psychic spy unit.  He knows his stuff, and his novel, Unseen Forces, is a helluva thrill ride full of conspiracies within conspiracies.  It’s Indiana Jones meets Jason Bourne.  He owes me a night’s sleep, because I couldn’t put it down.”

                   -Bob Misiorowski, producer, Tombstone

 

Unseen Forces is about a modern day spy agency race to solve an ancient Egyptian riddle, and it will keep you up nights with feverish anticipation.  Ed Kovacs’ novel is destined to become a classic in the action/mystery/quest genre!”

          -Randall Fitzgerald, author of Cosmic Test Tube

 

“A real page-turner rivaling The Da Vinci Code.”

                                      -Phenomena Magazine

 

“I couldn’t wait to get back to it after I put it down.  Kovacs covers some serious philosophical questions within the framework of a potboiler.”

-Paul Smith, Major, U.S. Army (retired), former military remote viewer in a secret unit funded by the Defense Intelligence Agency.  Author of Reading The Enemy’s Mind

 

 

Becke,

 

UNSEEN FORCES is out of print, but I think used copies are available online.  I own all of the rights, and will probably get around to doing a revision and releasing it as an e-book.  Does it sound like something you'd want to read?

 

(I must be boring--almost no one else has commented in this thread!)

Inspired Wordsmith
eadieburke
Posts: 1,925
Registered: ‎01-27-2007
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

[ Edited ]

Ed:

 

I just finished reading STORM DAMAGE. I started it last night and finished reading it this morning. It was awesome! 

 

It was a fast-paced page turner thriller. At the end of each chapter, I couldn't put it down. I was reading last last night and was so tired but I just had to read one more chapter. I couldn't wait to get up this morning and finish reading your book. I actually got up at 5:30 AM, fixed a cup of tea and read until the end.

 

It was fascinating reading about the aftermath of Katrina (even though you don't mention Katrina by name). Loved reading about the history of Mardi Gras and The French Quarters. Your characters and story were very solid and believable. 

 

Looking forward to the next Cliff St. James novel, GOOD JUNK!

Eadie - A day out-of-doors, someone I loved to talk with, a good book and some simple food and music -- that would be rest. - Eleanor Roosevelt
Author
EdKovacs
Posts: 60
Registered: ‎09-12-2011
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


eadieburke wrote:

Ed:

 

I just finished reading STORM DAMAGE. I started it last night and finished reading it this morning. It was awesome! 

 

It was a fast-paced page turner thriller. At the end of each chapter, I couldn't put it down. I was reading last last night and was so tired but I just had to read one more chapter. I couldn't wait to get up this morning and finish reading your book. I actually got up at 5:30 AM, fixed a cup of tea and read until the end.

 

It was fascinating reading about the aftermath of Katrina (even though you don't mention Katrina by name). Loved reading about the history of Mardi Gras and The French Quarters. Your characters and story were very solid and believable. 

 

Looking forward to the next Cliff St. James novel, GOOD JUNK!


Eadie,

 

Wow!  And thanks for your kind words and for buying my book!  I'm so glad you liked it.

 

It's late here, the Internet is slow, and if I sack out I can get 5 hours sleep.  I'll post some material about GOOD JUNK tomorrow, but meanwhile, here's a synopsis of UNSEEN FORCES:

Cheers,

Ed

 



Maverick archeologist Dr. Sky Wilder has never been able to prove any of his outside-the-box fringe theories... until now.  When he breaks what had been an impenetrable code, he unearths a long-buried Egyptian stone tablet in Arizona’s Red Rock country.    

 

But he forgoes validation and peer acceptance to keep his discovery secret, for the ramifications of possessing the tablet will surely be deadly. Whoever possesses all three hidden tablets holds the key to locate an ancient alchemical text containing a formula for physical immortality. The bodies pile up as Wilder realizes he’s been set-up as a pawn, caught between opposing covert agencies and secret brotherhoods that have been warring for centuries.

 

Tasked with keeping Sky Wilder alive at all costs, Captain Diana Hunt, the U.S. military’s most accurate remote viewer – a psychic spy – knows that the players in this deadly game are not what they appear to be. As the trail leads to Asia and with a political assassination looming, Sky and Diana confront powerful forces of Nature and Man as they unravel the conspiracies and expose the true unseen forces behind their opponents – and allies.

 

Sky suffers from claustrophobia and achluphobia, unfortunate traits for a man who constantly faces the unknown blackness of the netherworld.  Sky must overcome his debilitating phobias and Diana must confront her dark past as they challenge Simon Forte, a billionaire occultist, for possession of the Book of Spells. 

 

Unseen Forces has suspense and action peppered with humor and romance, and thematically riffs on the notion of hidden power -- as exercised by nature, by corporate and governmental corruption, and by the unexplained mysteries of our collective past. 

Inspired Wordsmith
eadieburke
Posts: 1,925
Registered: ‎01-27-2007
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


EdKovacs wrote:

eadieburke wrote:

Ed:

 

I just finished reading STORM DAMAGE. I started it last night and finished reading it this morning. It was awesome! 

 

It was a fast-paced page turner thriller. At the end of each chapter, I couldn't put it down. I was reading last last night and was so tired but I just had to read one more chapter. I couldn't wait to get up this morning and finish reading your book. I actually got up at 5:30 AM, fixed a cup of tea and read until the end.

 

It was fascinating reading about the aftermath of Katrina (even though you don't mention Katrina by name). Loved reading about the history of Mardi Gras and The French Quarters. Your characters and story were very solid and believable. 

 

Looking forward to the next Cliff St. James novel, GOOD JUNK!


Eadie,

 

Wow!  And thanks for your kind words and for buying my book!  I'm so glad you liked it.

 

It's late here, the Internet is slow, and if I sack out I can get 5 hours sleep.  I'll post some material about GOOD JUNK tomorrow, but meanwhile, here's a synopsis of UNSEEN FORCES:

Cheers,

Ed

 



Maverick archeologist Dr. Sky Wilder has never been able to prove any of his outside-the-box fringe theories... until now.  When he breaks what had been an impenetrable code, he unearths a long-buried Egyptian stone tablet in Arizona’s Red Rock country.    

 

But he forgoes validation and peer acceptance to keep his discovery secret, for the ramifications of possessing the tablet will surely be deadly. Whoever possesses all three hidden tablets holds the key to locate an ancient alchemical text containing a formula for physical immortality. The bodies pile up as Wilder realizes he’s been set-up as a pawn, caught between opposing covert agencies and secret brotherhoods that have been warring for centuries.

 

Tasked with keeping Sky Wilder alive at all costs, Captain Diana Hunt, the U.S. military’s most accurate remote viewer – a psychic spy – knows that the players in this deadly game are not what they appear to be. As the trail leads to Asia and with a political assassination looming, Sky and Diana confront powerful forces of Nature and Man as they unravel the conspiracies and expose the true unseen forces behind their opponents – and allies.

 

Sky suffers from claustrophobia and achluphobia, unfortunate traits for a man who constantly faces the unknown blackness of the netherworld.  Sky must overcome his debilitating phobias and Diana must confront her dark past as they challenge Simon Forte, a billionaire occultist, for possession of the Book of Spells. 

 

Unseen Forces has suspense and action peppered with humor and romance, and thematically riffs on the notion of hidden power -- as exercised by nature, by corporate and governmental corruption, and by the unexplained mysteries of our collective past. 


Ed: Thanks for the info about UNSEEN FORCES. I'll have to check it out!

Eadie - A day out-of-doors, someone I loved to talk with, a good book and some simple food and music -- that would be rest. - Eleanor Roosevelt
Moderator
becke_davis
Posts: 35,755
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


EdKovacs wrote:

becke_davis wrote:

Ed - I've got a question for you, whenever you check in. (Hopefully I haven't asked it already - I'm a tad frazzled right now, trying to meet garden writing deadlines while also keeping up with Christmas-related chores.)

 

Anyway, here's the question:

 

What were your favorite books when you were growing up? Which books inspired your fondness for mystery/thrillers/suspense?


Becke,

 

In high school I read Ian Flemming's books, and they got me hooked on espionage thrillers.  I remember some old TV show from WAAAAY back, I think it was called "Assignment: Danger" or something like that.  I became entralled with the notion of the old colonial cities/capitols and wanted to visit all of them in the Far East: Manilla, Rangoon, Singapore, Bangkok, Phnom Penh, Saigon, Hong Kong, Shanghai...

 

I have now crossed most of them off my list.  I've lived in Phnom Penh, spent a lot of time in Bangkok, Tokyo, Seoul, Ulan Bator, and Hong Kong.  Love Saigon and Singapore.  I've been to Burma, but still have to get to Rangoon.

 

I remember seeing a Bond film set in Japan, back when Sean Connery was Bond.  I loved the exotic locales and the the whole action/adventure experience.  It's one of the reasons I am wanting to do the sequel to UNSEEN FORCES, because I really like espionage action thrillers set against a global backdrop. 


Wow, Ed, you've seen waaaaay more of the world than I have, although I'm guessing you didn't visit all these places as a tourist. What places are left on your list?

 

How cool that you got to see a James Bond set! Did you take pictures? (Email me any pictures you'd like to share with us.)

Moderator
becke_davis
Posts: 35,755
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


EdKovacs wrote:

Here is some of the advance praise I got for UNSEEN FORCES:

 

ACCLAIM FOR ED KOVACS’

 

UNSEEN FORCES

 

“Indiana Jones on steroids.  Kovacs adroitly embroiders an intellectual tapestry encompassing geography, history, and phenomenology all accented with action and intrigue.”

-Col. John Alexander, author of Future War, and The Warrior’s Edge,

 

“Kovacs makes fine use of his screenwriting background – weaving Egyptian mythology, psychic spying, and a quest for the secret of eternal life into a spellbinding thriller that will keep you riveted well past midnight.  Unseen Forces seems destined for the big screen… but we all know the book’s always better than the movie.”

              -Terry Perkins, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch

 

“Ed Kovacs wrote the first movie about the U.S. military’s secret psychic spy unit.  He knows his stuff, and his novel, Unseen Forces, is a helluva thrill ride full of conspiracies within conspiracies.  It’s Indiana Jones meets Jason Bourne.  He owes me a night’s sleep, because I couldn’t put it down.”

                   -Bob Misiorowski, producer, Tombstone

 

Unseen Forces is about a modern day spy agency race to solve an ancient Egyptian riddle, and it will keep you up nights with feverish anticipation.  Ed Kovacs’ novel is destined to become a classic in the action/mystery/quest genre!”

          -Randall Fitzgerald, author of Cosmic Test Tube

 

“A real page-turner rivaling The Da Vinci Code.”

                                      -Phenomena Magazine

 

“I couldn’t wait to get back to it after I put it down.  Kovacs covers some serious philosophical questions within the framework of a potboiler.”

-Paul Smith, Major, U.S. Army (retired), former military remote viewer in a secret unit funded by the Defense Intelligence Agency.  Author of Reading The Enemy’s Mind

 

 

Becke,

 

UNSEEN FORCES is out of print, but I think used copies are available online.  I own all of the rights, and will probably get around to doing a revision and releasing it as an e-book.  Does it sound like something you'd want to read?

 

(I must be boring--almost no one else has commented in this thread!)


Ed - This is normal, don't worry. A couple hundred people usually view the threads during the week our featured authors visit, but that count continues to go up - sometimes astronomically - over the weeks and months. 

 

Part of the problem is our glitchy sign-in process - it's necessary to sign in before you can comment, so some people just give up and read the posts instead. On the plus side, our lovely lurkers buy a lot of books!

 

Since people do continue to view these threads, please come back any time you want in the future. You're always welcome to share new information with us - a new book cover, an e-release, an award nomination - anything you like! This is "your" thread now, and we'd love to see you back here again.

 

You asked about UNSEEN FORCES - definitely let me (and the rest of us) know if you reissue it. That's another difference with the Mystery Forum - it's not like a traditional book club where people read the books in the advance of an author's visit. Here, people read the posts and (sometimes) ask questions (mostly they leave that to me), and then they go out and buy the book if it sounds interesting.

 

Oddly enough, our participants seem to like it best when debut authors join us. Brand new authors often draw a lot more interest than the big names!

Inspired Wordsmith
eadieburke
Posts: 1,925
Registered: ‎01-27-2007
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

[ Edited ]

Unseen Forces  

 

Ed:

 

I checked out UNSEEN FORCES and it's selling in paperback for about $74.43, so I think you should reissue it so we can afford to buy it. I guess it was so good, everybody who bought kept it on their "keeper" shelf.

Eadie - A day out-of-doors, someone I loved to talk with, a good book and some simple food and music -- that would be rest. - Eleanor Roosevelt
Scribe
optic_i
Posts: 750
Registered: ‎06-26-2011
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

 Hi Ed, 

 

 I also looked up Unseen Forces in book and nookbook format. I would like to read it, but like Eadie

Scribe
optic_i
Posts: 750
Registered: ‎06-26-2011
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Hi Ed, sorry for my last post, I am my own gremlin today ! 

 

 I saw the book price like Eadie and wanted to ask if the book was out of print. It looks like one I would like to read if you were to have it reprinted.

 

Also, Ed, I didn't know that you could find gold and silver by dousing. I found that very interesting because a friend of mine taught me how to pan for gold in some streams. No gold was found but it was an adventure for me, anyway!    :smileyhappy:       

 

Optic

Moderator
becke_davis
Posts: 35,755
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


eadieburke wrote:

Unseen Forces  

 

Ed:

 

I checked out UNSEEN FORCES and it's selling in paperback for about $74.43, so I think you should reissue it so we can afford to buy it. I guess it was so good, everybody who bought kept it on their "keeper" shelf.


Good grief!

Moderator
becke_davis
Posts: 35,755
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Hi Ed - I'm trying to think what questions I've neglected to ask you. Here are two kind of random ones:

 

1) What do you do when you Really Should Be Writing?

 

2) Would you share some little known facts about yourself with us?

Author
EdKovacs
Posts: 60
Registered: ‎09-12-2011
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


eadieburke wrote:

Unseen Forces  

 

Ed:

 

I checked out UNSEEN FORCES and it's selling in paperback for about $74.43, so I think you should reissue it so we can afford to buy it. I guess it was so good, everybody who bought kept it on their "keeper" shelf.


$74!  Ouch!  I suppose I will have to talk to my agent about what to do.  I, of course, want to keep St. Martin's happy, so I would not release UF as an ebook without conferring with them.  I'll get on it next year!