The WuFluBlues

This is an expanded musing on an email that I have sent out to my readers who have subscribed to my newsletter.  There’s a bit more on here than in the email, because, frankly, I don’t want to bore them.  However, you can avail yourself of all the contact routes I outline here.

I’ve got the WuFlu Blues.
     No, I’m not positive, nor have I been around someone with the virus.  But something’s eating at me.  One of you needs my help, and I can’t shake that feeling.  I’m certain someone’s also got the WuFluBlues.

You mean a lot to me.

This is some serious business.  But I’m not going to dwell on that.  Enough people and companies are sending you serious email.  You don’t need another one.  Instead, I’m going to talk about you.

How are you doing? 

You’re probably in the same boat.  You might be in a place where you’re basically stuck at home.  And you’ve run out of quarantine snacks.  And that playlist and TV just isn’t cutting it anymore.  How are you getting along during the present crisis?  Are you coping?

Why do I care?  You are my readers.  I am one of your authors.  I write stories because I must write them.  To me, people like McCrary and Lisa Daniels and Celine Greenfield and Panjar are not creations, they are friends that showed up in my head to talk to me.  They are the ones in danger, they are the ones I have to figure out how to rescue.  I help them figure it out.  They do the heavy lifting.  They win.  Sometimes, they lose (I hated what happened to Commander Jeng)  But their stories demand to be told.

So I tell their stories.  I offer them to you to read, because I like them, and I think you will, too.  That means we’re connected.

So, how are you doing?

“Any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind…” wrote John Donne.  I know many, many writers who ‘trunk’ their work because they fear something is not good enough to be read: their technique, the story, the characters.  But since you miss 100% of the shots you do not take, I took a flier on my works.  You, dear readers, have responded well.  I’m not a bestseller–in fact, I’ve still not made back the money I put out on editing and the cover.  But I am happy with where I am.

But your well-being, both you (general) and you (individual), does concern me.  Ask yourself these questions:

  • Am I doing OK with this enforced isolation?
  • Am I sick with worry, but have nowhere to turn?
  • Do I need a chat with someone?
  • Do I need a small story to lift my day?
  • Do I have someone I would love to see as a character in one of Bill’s novels?

I’m actually dead serious about all of these questions.  I am happy to chat with as many people as possible.  I know and work with many introverts.  I don’t take ghosting personally.  I’ve dialed a lot of people and hung up before the last four digits.  But I know how much I’d love to talk to a Larry Niven, or Allen Steele, or any number of authors that I admire.  So here’s your chance.

My little bit.
     In this time of enforced isolation and unknown danger, we all called to lend a hand.  This is my little bit.

How can I help?

  • Email me (WDPatterson over at the yahoo dot com domain)
  • FB Messenger as Bill Patterson
  • Skype (better email me first)
     …it’s all good.  Want to name a character after someone special?  contact me.  Do you need to vent about something, and need a sympathetic ear?  Got one here.  Lonely?  I know how that feels.  Did someone do you dirt, and you want a villain named after them?  Oh, I can help big time.  Who doesn’t want to punch out Subby or Duran?  Just get in touch with me.

What if you’re good?  You can work from home, you’ve got two months of toilet paper saved up, twenty liters of chicken stock in the basement freezer, and you’re thirty and healthy.  You don’t need me, you say.  Congratulations–I mean that sincerely.  Then I ask only two favors from you.  First: would you mind leaving a review on Amazon for something of mine you’ve read?  Second, would you consider assisting me with other readers who need assistance?

And that’s it.  That’s all this email is about.  What cops call a ‘welfare check’–seeing if you’re OK and need anything.  No sales, no push to buy this or that.

As a Roman Catholic, I do pray for the welfare of my readers.  I want you all to get through this WuFlu without permanent problems.  I feel very strongly called to write this email to you, my readers, because I am certain that I can assist at least one person who needs a helping hand.  Please reach out to me, if you need to.  I know that some of you will unsubscribe (I lose about 1% with every email I send), but I am willing to lose those potential sales if I can help one person who needs it.

Just hit reply.  Send one line: “Help, please”  That’s all you have to do.

So many things…

Yes, yes, I know.  I want the next book published, too.  But Tropical Storm Isaias roared through, and there’s a tree down in my backyard, and it’s chainsaw time tomorrow.  But I am working on it.  Really.

Also working on Mohs 5.5 Anthology series volume 2–MARS.  You wouldn’t believe the sheer number of things that have to get done on that.  But I am hopeful that this anthology will verify the audience for hard science fiction.

So, yeah, it’s a touch busy here.  Just wanted to let you know that I’m still alive, still intent on getting work out.

He’s alive!


Well, yes, I am.  I only have a moment for a quick note.

OK, I’ll give you a little history, too.  Since my last post

(yeah, 13 months between posts.  This blog is like, vibrant)

I’ve been consumed with cleaning up all the effects of two deaths in the family.  My mother’s was particularly difficult.  But I finished the last official action last week, now all I have to do for her is wait for the tax folks to finish squinting at the returns and give me their OK.

The writing, alas, has suffered.  But no more.  I have released two prequels for my new series, VectorShip Archives, and they’re available for free at my Wall of Covers.  Check them out.

More, of course, later.  Be of good cheer.


The incomparable Jessica West has taken my second submission and attached about 120 comments to it, and sent it back for repair.  I’ve been working on it for about a week, and I’m about two-thirds done.  Targeting Saturday the 15th for the final pass.  After that, publication!  Looking for 12/28, so if you’re getting a new ereader for Christmas, you’ve got something to load into it!

Yup,  I got it done.  Finally.  It’s a bit of a mess, naturally, that is why I pay the incomparable Jessica West well-earned bux to whomp the draft into some semblance of shape.  It’s been a week now, and no word.  I am beginning to fret.  Is it that much of a mess?  Or is she waiting until my check clears?  (she’s a steely-eyed businesswoman, I suspect the answer is ‘both’)

Depending on how much red ink has been poured on the manuscript, I have no idea when it will be ready for publication, but it will come out before Christmas.

Now, to go hit ‘refresh’ on the email client…..

Three weeks from today, I have to submit an 80k manuscript to my editor for the final book to my Riddled Space series. I have….11.5k.

I’m gonna need a bigger cup of coffee….

—————————WHAT THIS MEANS TO YOU—————————

The final chapter in Riddled Space will be written by 6 October.  The edit process will last until approximately October 30th.  Cover art will be added, the files uploaded to Amazon.

Tears of Selene will be released in mid-November, just in time for you to load it into your eReader so you have something interesting to do during Thanksgiving.

Quick note.  Yes, I am way far behind in updating this blog.  There’s a reason (isn’t there always?)

The biggest reason is that I was writing fiction faster than I could blog about them.
I was trying very hard to determine if I could write and publish a book every 8 weeks.  That worked (mostly) for the first two books (Riddled Space and Come In, Collins), but I fell badly behind with Dead Men Flying.  Not so much for the third book, which took me fourteen weeks to finish.  Now, there’s Book 4, which I haven’t started, despite eight weeks having passed since Dead Men Flying was released.  What’s the problem?

In a nutshell, a death in the family.  My mother passed away at the age of 87, back in January.  I am the next of kin, and I was named executor of her estate.  It takes more work that you could imagine.  I am, essentially, running two households, while at the same time, trying to sort through 60+ years of family memories.

It’s ruining my productivity, as you can imagine.  But I’ll get past this in a couple of months, and get back on the production train.  I apologize to my followers for my absence.


I really do have to apologize for a couple of things:

  • I didn’t keep up this blog, because, well frankly, I’ve been killing myself cranking out Riddled Space and Come In, Collins.
  • I didn’t keep you abreast of the progress of Come In, Collins.  Suddenly, poof, there’s a whole novel, two months after I launched the first one.

But Come In, Collins is here, and in celebration, I’ve discounted Riddled Space, the first book, to 99¢ for you folks that didn’t pick it up the first time.  Here’s your chance to snatch Book 1 for a song.

I’ll generate a more detailed post later on today.

NaNo 2017

If you’re doing NaNoWriMo, you might want to check out my Quick & Dirty 3-Act Plotting Guide.

Just a quick note that RS1 has launched.  More to follow, including the link to Amazon where you can find it!  Amazon can take a couple of days to actually be able to sell a book once you press ‘Publish’.  Thus, the short note.
Time for bed!