Characters in Fiction

As most of you know I like to get readers engaged with my characters early in my books.  I want the readers to have a reason to empathize with not only the heroes but also their adversaries.  For those who have read some of my work, you have seen main characters who are not just cookie cutter “good guys” but have at least some skills, interests, and/or behaviors that are interesting and perhaps extraordinary.  And not all of my anti-heroes are despicable though some actually are.  Often I give the reader an insight into why a character is doing what they are doing even if it is evil and disgusting.  Anyway, I have started posting short videos on YouTube, Instagram and TikTok discussing my thoughts on the subject and will be posting more detailed explanations and examples as time goes on.  You can check them out at my pages:

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCvUwg0EQ6PDhFpaNcEScKg 

Instagram: https://instagram.com/jdrewbrumbaugh 

TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@authorjdb 

On a separate note, the ebook edition of Bula Bridge will be on sale for 99 cents beginning August 14 through the end of the month.  Most of you that follow these posts have probably already read it, and if you did, please post a review.  This book currently has so few reviews on Amazon that many promotional sites will not accept it for an ad.  In case some of you haven’t read it and would like to grab a copy here are links:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07QFS85PJ 

Almost everywhere else: https://books2read.com/u/mKxWgv 

And for all the books you read, please remember to post a review, especially if the books are indie published.  Reviews are important.


Indie Novels – Good or Bad?

These days almost anyone can become indie published.  Well, you do have to write a book but after you have a manuscript, publishing can be done without the benefit of a single gatekeeper; no editor, no agent, no publisher, no one to read the book ahead of time and provide criticism.  Naturally that leaves the doors open for a wide variety in the quality of indie published works.  There are some really good indie books.  There are also some really bad ones.  Fortunately, from my experience, there are a lot more good ones than poor ones.  Still, how do book buyers know the difference?  Reviews can help.  Bloggers too if they post honestly about books they’ve read.  Readers can look through social media for author readings to get a sample of an author’s work.  Word of mouth is one of the best ways to learn about a book that fits reader interest.  The point is if you read an indie published work tell your friends what you thought of it, post reviews, let the world know.  Especially if you liked the book.  It can really help the author find an audience.

One other note, Shela has been on a great run this month selling more books than ever.  Being on sale for 99 cents certainly helped.  That sale only runs until the end of July so if you were thinking of buying an e-copy, now is the time.  Several readers have commented that they think it is even better than Shepherds.  Let me know what you think.

You can get it at Amazon:

Or lots of other retailers: 



Sale Announcement and Book update

The ebook addition of Shela, the sequel to Shepherds, goes on sale today for 99 cents and will remain at that price through the end of July.  In this sci-fi action adventure, Olga, a genetically engineered cowboy, and her husband, Toivo, are bound for Hawaii to have their first baby.  Their tuna school and the dolphins who help them herd the fish are left in the care of Shela, another genetically altered person.  But she is captured by human traffickers and it falls to Olga and Toivo to forgo the trip to Hawaii and do whatever they can to save their friend including having a baby in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.  The only help they will get is from their faithful dolphins.  Even if they catch up to the slavers’ ship, what can they do against armed thugs?  It is a rollercoaster ride that rushes to a heart-pounding conclusion.

Update note: the second fantasy novel in the pending trilogy that details the origins of Tirumfall Tower and the wizards who built it, has finally crossed 50k words.  Progress has been slow of late but does continue.  At some point, I’ll post a short excerpt on the website as a free teaser.  Look for more info to show up here when that happens.

In the meantime, I hope everyone finds great books to read.  And while you’re looking around, see if you can find and indie author that fits your tastes.


Indie Author Good Day

#indieauthors work almost entirely alone.  We write, run the promotion department, act as publisher and media person.  Most days there’s little newsworthy to report.  We write, draft blurbs for ads, maybe put out a newsletter that we hope someone reads, revise our latest WIP, without benefit of coworkers.  We often don’t have editors to talk to about our latest book or promotion managers who want to discuss the next campaign.  Most of the time we just soldier on with nothing to buoy our spirits never knowing if we are getting anywhere worthwhile or not.  Today has been one of those rare days where something positive actually happened.

First, I registered for the Fairport Harbor Library Arts and Crafts Day, June 11 from 9 am to 3 pm at the library.

Second, I sent off a box of my books to Spine Bookstore and Café in St. Louis where they will have them on the shelf.  And they are scheduling me for a Writer’s Spotlight on Friday, June 3rd where I’ll be given time center stage to talk about my books.  Check out Spine online, they are more than just a bookstore.

I’m excited to be a part of both of these events.  If you are in either area, drop by and say hi.  Or bring your copy of any of my books and I’ll be glad to sign it for you.  As always, wishing everyone great books to read.

#writingcommunity #readingcommunity #amwritingfiction #amwriting #readers


What’s Up?

Hi.  If you were expecting exciting updates, I am sorry to disappoint everyone but things have been progressing slowly.  Book 2 in the second fantasy trilogy continues to move forward.  The first draft is about halfway done.  But now other projects have moved ahead of the novel.

The first project is thanks to my writers’ group, Club Ink.  We’ve all been assigned to pick a publication to submit a manuscript to and then actually produce a manuscript worthy of submission.  I’ve chosen to write, or re-write, a science fiction short story about a man imprisoned alone on a desert planet and what he does to stay alive and maintain his sanity.  The first draft is done and set aside before I do an initial revision.  And then it goes to the group for critique.

The second project I’ve decided to tackle is to write a script for one of my books.  I always wanted to see one of my novels made into a movie.   Finally, I’ve decided to do something about it.  I am told that I need a script to send around if I want something to happen.  So, I’ve selected War Party and given that I have no idea how to write a script, this project requires lots of research.  I hope I can get help down the road from someone who is an accomplished script writer.  I know someone who knows someone, that sort of thing.  We’ll see how that goes.

In the meantime, stay well and I hope you find great books to read.  If you do, post reviews and tell your friends.


Authors Fair Report

The Authors Fair at the Chardon Library turned out to be a lot of fun with twenty-three authors on hand.  While it was a pretty busy event for me, thanks to a few friends who showed up unexpectedly, I still took time to wander through the event site and talk with a couple of other authors.  There were some really good books and enough people to keep most authors busy, though honestly, I think most of the people who came were friends and family of the authors.  Thanks to the Geauga County Library and especially Chardon branch for putting on the event.

I admit that I was a bit anxious about this, since I hadn’t been to an in-person event in a couple of years, but thanks to the friendly people at the library who helped me get set up, the congenial attitude of the other authors, and the warm reception I received from those who were browsing the tables, it was a fun day.  Almost makes me want to attend another event somewhere.  

In the meantime, the work on book 2 of the second fantasy trilogy continues to move along.  At some point I may post an excerpt from book 1 if anyone wants to check out a sample.

For rest of April, all my e-books remain discounted by $1 so if you’ve been thinking of buying one, do it before the sale runs out.Wishing everyone great books to read.

J Drew Brumbaugh’s table at Chardon Library Authors Fair.

Event, books on sale & progress report

Along with a number of other local authors, I will be at the Authors Fair at the Chardon Library on April 16, 2022 from 1 to 3 pm.  I’ll have all my books available for sale at reduced prices from any bookstore or website, so if you’ve ever wanted a print copy (signed if you want) stop by the library.  And who knows, maybe you’ll find another author that interests you.

To celebrate this first in-person event for me in two years, all of my ebooks are on sale for the entire month of April for $1 off the normal price.  

And finally, the first draft of book 2 in my second fantasy series (the Tirumfall prequel trilogy) continues to move along. At the moment it is perhaps a quarter done and growing.  All three books in this new series explain the history of Tirumfall Tower, who were the wizards that built it and what happened to them that caused the tower to remain abandoned and locked for centuries.

Stay well and good luck finding great books to read.  And don’t forget to post reviews of the books you do read, especially if you liked them.

#readingcommunity #ebooks #writingcommunity #indieauthors


Breaking News

No, this is not about Ukraine though I certainly am praying that they will be able to keep their country free from the Russians.

So, while anything I say won’t be nearly as important to the world, maybe there are some of you who need a respite.  In many ways, finding an escape from the stress of the real world is what good books are supposed to do.  If you’re still reading this, here’s what I’m doing as far as my writing.  

The first draft of book 1 in the new fantasy trilogy is done, not good but then first drafts aren’t expected to be good, just finished.  I’ve started book 2 and am happy to say that I’ve got a little over 10,000 words so far.  A long way to go, but it is taking shape.  I have no titles only calling them “Second Trilogy Book 1 or 2”.

Sales of the #GaliweeVisionSeries that was on sale during the month of February went well.  Thanks to everyone who bought a copy of either book and double thanks to anyone who bought both.  Even more thanks to those of you who posted a rating or review.  If you liked what you read, please tell your friends.

Lastly, Club Ink had their say about my FTL sci-fi submission this month.  My choice of AI geometry inspired a great cartoon and got me thinking about the interactions between AIs and the people that they have to interface with.  This is pretty sharp bunch and they made several really intriguing suggests.  More notes to put in the “What about this” folder.  But then back to the fantasy novel.

As always, I hope everyone stays well and finds some really great books to read – suggestions always welcome.


News Worth Knowing (Maybe)

First, a blatant plug.  Both ebooks in the #GaliweeVisionsSeries are on sale this month for 99 cents at numerous distribution sites, including Amazon (links below).  

Book 1: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00BKMFNCM

Book 2: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07QFS85PJ

In other news, the first draft of my next fantasy book is nearing completion.  It is the story of Koronus, the second son in a noble family who is not going to inherit anything and being weaker than most of his contemporaries, he is having a hard time adjusting to a life that shows no promise.  That is until he meets Fairwind who gives him a book that changes his life.  

What I have so far is still rough but at least soon the first draft will exist.

And I’m working on one more thing thanks to a challenge from Club Ink, a local writer’s group.  I am revisiting a FTL sci-fi novel I worked on several years ago and am determined to breathe new life into it.  I want a setting that’s more “futuristic” than what I’d envisioned originally.  I mean really, 200 years from now what will the technology be?  Any suggestions?

I hope you find some really good books to read and when you do, you’ll tell your friends.


Writing Update

As most of you know, Shela is out, published, and the ebook is currently on sale.  Thanks to everyone who has read it and especially thanks to those who chose to post a review.  Ratings and reviews are appreciated.

On another note, the Tirumfall Trilogy continues to be my best selling collection, regularly garnering more reviews and positive reader comments.  

That’s all history and as they say “what have you done for me lately?” So, what am I doing?  I am working on the pre-prequel to the fantasy series.  If you read the complete trilogy, you know that there are serious ties to the tower that was built long ago by a group of wizards that has been sealed for centuries.  Who built it?  Why was it locked?  What happened to those wizards?

All that was left unexplained in the current trilogy and is quite a story in itself.

And that’s what I am working on.  It is the fascinating story of a young man who though born into nobility had no future until he discovered magic.  It is the story of how he managed to find his way to the Tirumfall Wizards Guild and through hard work and struggles, earned his place as a wizard. Eventually he becomes the Master Wizard who despite open opposition from some of the more unscrupulous wizards, unites most of the guildmembers to build the tower that finally got Gwen and Isabella into the mess that reaches a climax at the end of Key to Tirumfall.

I hope this (no title yet) will be even better than the books that precede it.

In the meantime, I hope you all stay safe and find some really good books to read.