While Shadesbreath may be one of HubPages’ most popular and beloved writers, there is more behind this Hubber, whose real name is John Daulton, than meets the eye!

On his profile, John shares that Shadesbreath is but the sarcastic alter ego of his fantasy and science fiction writing self. This sci-fi-fantasy writer has been quite busy as of late, and has just released his first novel, The Galactic Mage, a magical space epic.

To get a more thorough update on the project, as well as some tips for those on HubPages interested in executing a similar feat, we asked Shadesbreath for an interview to which he obligingly agreed. I hope the following exchange inspires you to develop additional writing ambitions of your own!

So, your novel is officially out! How do you feel at this point? Euphoric? Tired?

Yes. Euphoric and tired sums it up pretty nicely. It’s been a lot more work than I expected, especially this last week, tying up the loose ends, but the experience and learning is great. As far as the euphoria goes, it really is exciting. These characters have been in my head for so many years, like little people locked up in the pickled cells of my brain, but finally they are free. They get to go meet the rest of the world, make friends in a way, and take on an existence of their own. I hope people will love them as much as I do. It’s a little scary, honestly. But very cool.

For how long have you been working on The Galactic Mage?

I wrote it… the first time… eight or so years ago. I sent out queries to publishers until finally one publisher asked to see more. They even asked for the synopsis of the whole trilogy (which I had in great detail). Months later, they wrote back and told me “we love the story, but the writing isn’t what we’re looking for.” I heard that as, “You write like a two-year-old.” I’d already started back to school to get a degree in English and that letter cemented the deal. Rather than feel bad, I realized I had a good story, but I just didn’t know how to tell it well. When I finished my BA, I threw out the old manuscript and started over from scratch. I’ve been polishing it since.

Is this your first novel?

In print, yes.

The Galactic Mage will be published as a trade paperback and Kindle e-book on Amazon.com, and as a Nook e-book on Barnesandnoble.com. How did you choose your publishing formats, and was it much work to offer the book in so many forms?

I picked them based mainly on marketing factors. Amazon is the big dog in the universe, and success with Amazon comes with monster benefits. Cracking 1000 sales on Amazon is a threshold goal for me. From there, I believe the recommendations feature they have—you know, the thing that says, “people who bought this book also bought these others”— can really start generating unit sales. But, you have to get that first 1000 to really have statistical relevance for their system. I realize 1000 is a big number, but I’m aiming high and, well, we’ll see how it works long term. Uhh, by the way, how many copies can I put you and your family down for?

How have you been getting the word out about your work?

HubPages and Facebook are my main platforms. Facebook is fantastic for spikes of traffic and viral buzz. I’ve got a page set up just for the book, you can check it out (you’ll love the video. I’m very proud of the video trailer). Plus, Facebook ads are amazing, almost evil, in how narrow you can target niches. I’ll be working that pretty hard.

As far as HubPages goes, HP is just a rockin’ platform for me. I get about 40,000 page views a month, and while I know some of the hardcore folks like Patty Inglish or Habee would probably cut themselves if that’s all they got, I’m stoked to have access to that many pairs of eyes. My website and blog get consistent traffic from readers who find me through HubPages, and I’m counting on HP to keep delivering readers going forward. The three years I have spent here—even though I mostly write satire and pedantic sounding flatulence jokes—continue to be time extremely well spent for my writing career. And that’s not even counting the network of people I’ve met who help me constantly or any of the friends I’ve made.

Do you have any other books in the works?

I’m in final revisions of a novel titled A Fish Story, and I have a novelette called “Auction Yard” for which cover art is being finished as we speak. Probably out in February on that. Also come February, I’ll be writing book two in The Galactic Mage series, called Rift in the Races. With luck, I can have it out in time to sell for Christmas, but I at least want it out by this time next year.

Amongst all this novel writing you have been doing, what role does HubPages play?

Hubpages is my release valve. I know I’m supposed to write useful articles about stuff that is, uh, useful, but I don’t know anything useful. HubPages gives me an outlet for my writerly spasms, typically of the sort that look like grammatical outrage, social commentary, the aforementioned pedantic flatulence pieces, and whatever satirical something or other I can’t help but write. Amazingly, I get a check every month from you guys for that. I’m still not sure how that works, but I ain’t complainin’.

What advice would you give to other Hubbers who would like to publish books of their own?

Stop dreaming. So many people out there “dream” about being “a novelist someday.” Writing isn’t a dream. It’s a discipline. Make a plan and then do it.

Posted by:HubPages Admin

20 replies on “Shadesbreath Has Published a Novel!

  1. Congratulations on several points – storyline, art, introductory video on your attractive blog! Science fiction is awesome and your contributions are likely to raise the bar. I cannot imagine writing enough on one topic for a book, but you are encouraging!

  2. Shadesbreath, I am pleased for you in the way that only someone eaten up with jealousy and envy can really be pleased. It’s a writer’s (sort of) pleasure in another writer doing something rather very good.

    But seriously. Best wishes and all that – you put a lot of hard work in.

    At least I hope you did. Don’t tell me this came easy for you.

    Alright. I’ll lay off the cheap shots for a moment.

    Shadesbreath was an inspiration to me when I joined. The skill, the quality, the freshness, the freedom – I hate him.

  3. Congratulations to the fellow hubber for the great achievement. It also boosts the confidence and gives motivation to many writers to continue writing and expressing their ideas and thoughts to the great mass. HubPages is truly a great platform to give and gain wisdom from people all around the world. Shadesbreath, I would love to read your novel buddy. A huge round of applause for you! You set as a doctrine to many hubbers to continue their writing and endeavour to achieve wisdom. Well done!

  4. Congratulations John. I have always wanted to write a novel, but have never written anything that long, never mind had anything ready to send to a publisher. Perhaps some day when I have enough money saved up that I can afford to take the time required to write and edit a novel, I will do it. For now, it isn’t cost effective for me.

  5. Congratulations! I know that was a lot of hardwork and you have more ahead with marketing. Best wishes on your success!

  6. So you’ve been holding out on us Shade, I got hip to your book on Face Book, and I love Sci Fi so I will be buying it.

    Good Show

  7. Congratulations! I’ve already purchased a copy of this book, and I’m hoping to receive it soon. You’re an inspiration to us all!

    I’ve always wanted to write a book, but I lack the discipline to write something so extensive. 🙂

    I’m sure you’ll reach 1000 sales in no time!

  8. Even without having read it, I see no reason why this novel should not be a success. Shadesbreath writes with conviction, authority and considerable style, whether on a serious topic or merely venting for fun. In particular, he never forgets that he’s writing to his readers, and is one of HP’s best communicators as a result.
    I’m delighted by this release and look forward to hearing news of burgeoning sales!

  9. Shadesbreath…or Mr. Daulton…CONGRATS! I envy you as I have those characters in my head. I will take your advice and just get to it and stop dreaming! Thanks for the terrific insights! I look forward to your success!

  10. Congratulations! I am sure, this will adopted as sci-fi movie, ASAP! Calling the attention of movie producers out there! I’m a fan, Mr. John!

    Thanks for the tips. 😀

  11. Congratulations! I am intrigued by your story and journey. To query a group of publishers, then to take the feedback and complete a BA degree in English and turn around and REWRITE the entire novel? ! Wow-that is impressive.

    Best sales wishes to you. The cover is very cool.

  12. Wow!! That’s really exciting – Congratulations!! I am discovering that hubpages are a great place to explore ideas and learn and become better at what we do. There’s a lot of talent here 🙂

  13. Just got to love technology sometimes, just popped over to Amazon and downloaded a copy for the Kindle software for my iPhone. Now I have a novel to read when I get on a plane tomorrow from Thailand to Australia.

    Thanks John. Oh got a discount buying through Amazon as well. Look forward to the read.

  14. I don’t even understand how I stopped up right here, but I thought this publish was once great. I don’t realize who you might be however definitely you’re going to a famous blogger if you happen to are not already. Cheers!All About Pure Acai Berry Reviews recently posted..1

  15. I checked out the video trailer. Well done -it’s a great way to promote the novel. I never would have thought of using a video for book promotion!

  16. I’m intrigued from your story and journey. To question several marketers, then to accept feedback and finish a BA degree in British and switch around and REWRITE the whole novel?

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