March Update: Launch Day and Everything After

Here is a picture of me on release day morning for my debut novel, ‘Will You Still Love Me If I Become Someone Else?’ (still need a copy, click here). I didn’t know what to expect (like a ballon drop when the clock struck midnight or something), that didn’t happen, but it was exciting to get congratulations from friends and family.

It is often hard to take time and appreciate all of the hard work, dedication and sacrifice that goes into writing, editing, and marketing a book. And after all this effort I was holding my breath waiting for reviews. Did I have a typo? Did I tell the best story that I could? Will people get all the twists, turns, and clever writing that I put into the story? Did I— I had to stop and enjoy the moment and accept the fact that my baby is out in the world being read. I finished my coffee, didn’t set anything on fire, and went to work.

By the time I got home, my wife and boys had planned a surprise dinner and carrot cake (my favorite). I also promised myself a glass of Writer’s Tears Whiskey. I have saved this bottle to open once my first novel was published, and I’ll not have another drink until my second (It was delicious). I was all smiles as I reclaimed some of my tears on this long journey from idea to 406 page novel! Cheers!

Launch day was very different than I imagined. I had planned to throw a party and sign books, but that didn’t happen (you know—Covid and all). I am still waiting for my books to arrive from the printer so I can sign them and send them to folks who would have been at the launch party book signing event (the delay is all Covid’s fault). I am sure many creatives had to change their plans and release their work in the electronic vacuum of Zoom congratulations. I am thankful for all the friends and family that made the day special.

I thought the anxiety had been released, but the strangest thing was the next day, self-doubt and imposter syndrome started to creep in. As I held a copy of my book in my hands I felt overwhelmed with dread that people are reading this thing. Is it a good book? Will people like it? Will they throw tomatoes at me? Why is my Amazon sales rank going up and down like a yo-yo? What, I’m 9th on the New Release Metaphysical Fiction list? Is that good? What does that mean? Arghhh—

All day Wednesday I was tormenting myself with these type of thoughts, even as the congratulations were rolling in. It all came to a head on Thursday morning as I was waiting in my car for my dental checkup and cleaning. My phone dinged with notifications that 2 editorial reviews from Readers’ Favorite had arrived. My heart thumped loud in my chest and the voice of self doubt was screaming between my ears, preparing me for one star reviews and negative comments. My trembling finger pressed the link and all the air in the car was sucked into my lungs—I saw the reviews—Both 4 stars and gushing with praise on the construction, the story, how the characters moved them. I had to stop reading the reviews because my vision blurred with tears, and, thankfully, I started breathing again. I wiped my eyes with the heel of my hand and the call for me to go into the office came—

Why was I so effected by this? I had dozens of friends and advance readers already tell me the story was good. My publisher and editors said the story was good. And I knew I had written and put the effort in to craft a great story I’d be proud to release to the world. But in that moment in the car, holding my breath, that was the sum of my anxiety—

I am still waiting for more Editorial reviews to come in, I’m not holding my breath, but breathing easy and getting started on the next projects—details on these soon!

Also, my mom read my book and sent me a text with her review of the novel (it has some spicy parts in there), but she really enjoyed it, here is part of it: “…found your novel intricate and sultry…With a touch of interludes of one’s mind…your novel…is mind boggling and Captivating… I couldn’t put it down till I reached the end…Congratulations!!”

And now I’m really breathing easy! Am I the only one that feels this way? Let me know, send me a note, I’ll write back!

Not to fear, Rabbit Hole of Research will be dropping on March 20th! Also, the back issues of Rabbit Hole of Research are posted on my website, and If you missed an issue (or you are new to my newsletter) go check them out here. They are a fun take on the quirky science in Fiction books and movies. And I’ll be back in March with an exciting new episode. I have gotten a few reader requests—plasma arrows, Independence Day, Tenet—I am making a list and checking it… You have an idea of quirky science in fiction, let me know


Personally, I never imagined that my writing career would start to lift off as it has, and I’d be worrying about marketing, Newsletters or launch dates for novel’s and stories. Thank you all and Hopefully one day soon we can all hang out and chat over beverages! Until then—

Follow me on the internet for updates: Social Links

February Update: Snow, Snow, more Snow and the Release of My Debut Novel

Since the last time we chatted it has been nothing but snow, snow, snow, and more snow. My trusty yellow snow shovel has gotten a lot of work in the last couple weeks. I hope everyone that’s been getting snow and cold are staying safe and healthy.

In all of this wintery wonderland fun, my debut novel, ‘Will You Still Love Me If I Become Someone Else?’ releases on February 23rd. Click here to check it out!


I have realized that once I start shoveling and am half way through clearing the driveway an idea for a story, a scene, or a great thread of dialogue between two characters pop up in my mind. And by the time I’m finished shoveling, the idea is—poof—gone to the wind!

Does this ever happen to you (shoveling, in the shower, landing a rover on Mars)? Let me know!

The Rabbit Hole of Research, will return next month, and I’m cooking up something special for these Modern Times!

Print by atomicnumber14

Not to fear, the back issues of Rabbit Hole of Research are posted on my website, and If you missed an issue (or you are new to my newsletter) go check them out here. They are a fun take on the quirky science in Fiction books and movies. And I’ll be back in March with an exciting new episode. I have gotten a few reader requests—plasma arrows, Independence Day, Tenet—I am making a list and checking it … well that’s a different story. LOL

Debut Novel Released on February 23rd 2021

The official release of my debut psychological technothriller novel, “Will You Still Love Me If I Become Someone Else?” is less than 2 weeks away—FEBRUARY 23rd!!

Preorder ebook version from major retailers around the world (only 99 cents, the price will go up after release):

Preorder Here

I will have paperback copies and bookplates that I will sign and ship off to you for sale on my website soon!

Keep your eyes out for a virtual launch party, where I’ll read an excerpt and you can ask me anything.

Check out my author website for preorder links, updates, events, links to my books and newsletter signup.

If you have read an advance copy of “Will You Still Love Me If I Become Someone Else?” —thank you for taking time to read it—You can start posting a review on Goodreads and BookBub, I’ll be sending a reminder email to ya with links to add your review.

I’m super excited to finally get my novel into your hands! Thanks for your continued support!

Picture of bookcover with illustration of a man’s face sith interconnected faces erupting from the top the title is in red brushstroke font that reads will you still love me if I become someone else? And author name Jotham Austin
Preorder Here

How Big Did You Say That Arthropod Was?

Here are some of the largest Anthropods roaming the Earth today according to the internet

1. giant stick bugs can reach 2 feet long (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phasmatodea)

2. Giant weta, 4 inches long and weighing in at 2.5 ounces, the heaviest insect in the world (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giant_wētā)

3. Goliath Beetle can grow over 4 inches long and 3.5 ounces (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goliathus)

4. Atlas Moths are bird sized insects. They have a wingspan of 1 foot in length. The cocoons of Atlas moths are so large they are used as purses in Taiwan. (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attacus_atlas)

5. Tarantula Hawk are wasps that are so large they feed on tarantulas. They are 2 inches long with a stinger that is 9/32 inches and can deliver one of the most painful insect stings in the world. Luckily, they are docile unless disturbed. (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tarantula_hawk)

6. Giant Burrowing Cockroach, also called the rhinoceros cockroach can grow over 3 inches long. They can live up to 10 years and make good pets. (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giant_burrowing_cockroach)

7. Titan beetle is one of the largest beetles in the world reaching lengths of 6.6 inches long. Know for their short, curved and sharp mandibles that can snap pencils in half and cut into human flesh. (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Titan_beetle)

8. Giant water bugs, also know as toe-biters and alligator ticks can reach lengths of 4.5 inches. They get their name because they are known for their powerful bite. In Thailand they are considered good eating, and black lights, which draws in the insects, are used to harvest them. (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belostomatidae)

9. Queen Alexandra’s Birdwing is the largest butterfly in the world. It has a wingspan of over 1 foot. It was discovered in 1906 and the first specimens were collected using shotguns. (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Queen_Alexandra%27s_birdwing)

10. Actaeon Beetle, another giant beetle, can grow to lengths of >5 inches and 1.5 inches thick. It has thick armor and almost no natural predators. (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Actaeon_beetle)

11. Brazilian salmon pink bird eating tarantula have a leg span of 11 inches, and the largest spider in terms of leg span (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lasiodora_parahybana

12. Goliath bird eater, also in the tarantula family and is the largest spider by mass (6.2 ounces) and up to 5.1 inches in length. Bird-eating derives from an early copper engraving that shows it eating a hummingbird, but they rarely prey on birds. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goliath_birdeater)

13. Heterometrus swammerdami and the African Imperial Scorpion (both scorpions) have a length up to 11.5 and 9 inches respectively. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heterometrus_swammerdami) (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emperor_scorpion

14. Archispirostreptus gigas and Scaphistostreptus seychellarum (Millipedes) can reach sizes exceeding 11 inches. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archispirostreptus_gigas) (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spirostreptus)

15. Horseshoe crabs can grow to 24 inches. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horseshoe_crab)

16. Coconut Crab are the biggest Anthropod living on land. They can grow up to 3 feet and 9 pounds. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coconut_crab)

17. The Japanese spider crab is the biggest Anthropod. It has the advantage of living underwater where it’s weight is supported (more on that later). They have a leg span of 12.1 feet from claw to claw, a body size up to 16 inches and can weigh 42 pounds. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_spider_crab)

December: Holiday Update

Happy Holidays!

Happy Saturday! Hope y’all are having a good day.

Before we get going, I want to take a few words and thank you all for trusting me with your time, reading my words, giving feedback and encouragement. Hopefully, I can continue to entertain you all. Have a Healthy, Safe and Happy holiday season.

It has been a long and crazy year, and the one thing I tried to do is maintain balance. For me that’s balancing my science research work life, writing life, and family life. Exhausting just writing it!
I was working hard to get you the next edition of the Rabbit Hole of Research, but it’s not quite finished. A number of things came up at work and family, and I didn’t want to send out crap. I would never send out anything that I didn’t feel was worth your time reading. I do put a lot of effort into the research and the writing of the Rabbit Hole of Research. I hope you have been enjoying then and the next edition should be ready next weekend, a nice holiday read.

If you missed an issue (or you are new to my newsletter) go check them out here. They are a fun take on the quirky science in Fiction books and movies.

I have been busy with other projects and marketing. Marketing is the thing no one talks about when you are writing your novel. But, building platforms, like this newsletter, Twitter, Instagram, etc, becomes very important as book launches approach. Also, marketing efforts take up more time than you think. The more you put in the more you get out. With that said I wanted to get this special edition newsletter off to you because I am working with some other authors to share our stories with our networks of readers. So please click on the links below and check out their stories.

Personally, I never imagined that my writing career would start to lift off as it has, and I’d be worrying about marketing or launch dates for novel’s and stories. 2021 will be a busy year with the two releases, January and February, and I will also be working on several new stories. I have been accepted into three anthologies:

1) Moonlight Anthology— A paranormal Romance novella— if you remember a few newsletters ago I was researching werewolves—“Finding Light on The Dark Side of The Moon”—released October 2021

2) Emerging Worlds Anthology—an after isolation novella—“The Cure”—released November 2021

3) Virus Apocalypse Anthology—a horror pandemic Anthology (yes a fictional story)—“Long Way Back Home”—released March 2022

Also, I have been working on a new novel, ‘The Cost of Us” that I will be querying to agents soon and a graphic novel script. And, as early reviews about my novel form Advance Readers come in, I have started to outline a part 2!

And you will be getting your monthly fix of Jotham via the Rabbit Hole of Research Newsletter. I have been contemplating also using YouTube, Twitch, TikTok or Podcasts to bring you more Rabbit Hole of Research. What do you think?

I know this year has been crazy, but are you looking forward to any holiday traditions? Email me and let me know!


This year we put 20 of our favorite holiday movies into a tin Star Wars can (5 movies each) and we have been randomly drawing them:

So far we have watched 5:

  1. Nightmare before Christmas
  2. Let it snow 
  3. A Christmas Carol (1951)
  4. Daddy’s Home (questionable Holiday movie, there was a Christmas in April scene, but…)
  5. Klaus

Follow me on the internet to see what other movies are on the list! Will your favorite make it on our list? Social Links

Where’s the Book?

4 drafts and the outline of Will You Still Love Me, If I Become Someone Else?

So, after I told everyone that I signed a contract to publish my novel—everyone started asking about how the book was coming along, and when they could buy it?

I’d say, “It’s with the editors … or I’m revising.” Their response was, “But, you signed with RhetAskew Publishing in January 2019, where’s the book?”

Frustrated, I’d reply, “It’s coming along I promise.” I love you guys but a lot goes into getting a book published (more than I realized and I was getting into the trenches).
..
I snapped this picture to show a bit of the editing work that goes into the novel after you sign a contract. There are four printed manuscripts in the photo, each representing a major round of editing and/or revisions. Based on editor’s suggestions, beta-reader comments. Since January I have read my manuscript over 7 times (I still get chills when I get to the last few chapters).


So, how’d all this happen, you ask? In January 2018, I started to send queries and hashtag pitches on Twitter—out to agents. Here are the stats: The book was considered a mismatch (I like saying this versus rejected) to 15 agents and 3 publishers. I had two partial request and 4 full manuscript request.


While the manuscript was being considered by the agents and publishers that requested it, I got that email! Late December 2018, RhetAskew sent the best Christmas present, an email offering to publish “Will You Still Love Me, If I Become Someone Else?” I was at work and asked a co-worker to read the email because I couldn’t believe it. Now, a year later, I’m only months away from a long time dream—2020 is going to be fun!

Recently, I signed another contract to have my Romance Comedy Novella included in a Box Set, coming December 2020!

The journey is long and at times arduous, but always keep moving forward. Please stay tuned as the books move closer to production, cover reveal, release dates, book launches, contests and more about the process.

If you want to be in the know, sign up for my newsletter!

Remember the three P’s of writing, Practice, Patience and Persistence! We’ll talk more about these!

Happy writing!
Cheers,

JRA, II

What’s That You Say

Hey there. Thanks for stopping by and spending some time with me. I will try to give a little insight on publishing, balancing work with writing and even some science stuff I do at my day job. I’m not the only one trying to write, publish, market and work full time. Let’s spend some time sharing stories, tips and tricks to make it across that finish line. For all the non-authors, I will break down acronyms writers use like MS or ARC or TBR—that way when you see posts from favorite authors you can follow along.

So, a lot has been happening on the writing front. Punchline: I will publish my novel and a novella early 2020! Read on for details.


1. I sent my proofed Manuscript (MS) back to the publisher a couple days again. This means that my debut psychological thriller, “Will You Still Love Me, If I Become Someone Else?”, is going into production. You’d think it would be an easy street now that the writing, editing, and revising is done, but you’d be wrong. I have learned that marketing and promoting is a huge part of the publishing game. So, I’m learning the end and outs of building a platform and brand. So, please follow me on your favorite social media platform (links in the sidebar or I’m @jomega22 on everything) and sign up for my newsletter (I’m aiming for monthly, but if something exciting happens, like a give away, you may get an extra one). This is a big help to a new author (any author).


2. Since my novel is going into production this means that the Advance Reading Copies (ARCs) are coming soon. My publisher, RhetAskew, gives these out to readers about 90 days before publication to get reviews and blurbs and get the hype machine going. If you are interested in being added to the ARC list, subscribe to the newsletter or send me a DM on a social media platform.


3. So, the rumors are true; I am working on a Novella (a story in between a short story and a novel) to that will be published as a collection in a Romance box set early next year. Yes, you read right, my novel is a psychological thriller and now I’m writing a romance novella—okay let me explain, it’s not as big a leap as you think.

So, in college I was writing short-literary fiction and poetry, dealing with relationships and self reflection. After graduate school, I didn’t write much as I focused on my science career. After 6 years not writing, I got a journal and started writing, and a year later, I had a novel (it would be my second novel 3 years later that is getting published). “Write what you know—” is what they say, and I am a scientist, I mixed my literary-poetical style with a bit of sci-fi and I got ‘Will You Still Love Me, If I Become Someone Else?’

My novel has a lot to do about relationships, but layered into a twisty thriller plot with a dash of sci-fi.

Moving from that to writing a romantic comedy wasn’t difficult. I watch (it’s a little know fact about me) a ton of Rom-Coms, from ‘Christmas in Connecticut’ to ‘Always Be My Maybe’, and the hardest part was doing the actual writing (but isn’t that always the case). Also, I have added romance novels to my To Be Read (TBR) pile. I have already sent a draft of my novella, “Tomorrow May Be Too Late”, out to romance beta readers (people who will read the story to give feedback to help with revisions)–I’ll write a post about this process later. Besides thinking of ways to expand my romance novella, I’ve already starting to work on another Romance novella—maybe Novel (You Can Be My Wind Up—working title).

Okay, that’s all for now. If you have any questions or comments, post them here or on a social media platform. I’ll catch you on the Flip—

Happy Writing!

Cheers,

JRA, II

Big News!

Recently, I singed a contract with RhetAskew Publishing to publish my debut Science Fiction Novel, “Will You Still Love Me If I Become Someone Else?” Stay tuned for more news, and the process. Follow me @jomega22

Cheers,

Joe