Welcome to the official blog of Robert Stanek. Robert Stanek is the author of more than 100 books and is best known for his Ruin Mist novels. You can find older blog entries by following these links:
Current blog entires are here.
Lots of exciting news to share! First, the new Bugville audio books finally are available. All 15 of the new stories are available individually and in special collections. Last time I gave a sneak peak at collection 1. The other collections are:
Second, I'm in the process of launching the Bugville Superstars books, which are part of the Bugville Learning Adventures. These 108-page books focus on core skills for reading, writing, and arithmetic. Here's the cover for the first book:
Third, Into the Stone Land has an official publication date: May 5, 2011. Into the Stone Land is the second Magic Lands novel. It can be read on its own or as part of the series after reading Journey Beyond the Beyond.
It's been a busy time the past few months preparing and launching Bugville Jr and Bugville Learning Adventures. The fifteen original books are now releasing and becoming available just about everywhere. As of today, I also just finished reviewing the related audio books. I adapted each original picture book specifically for audio, ensuring each was a standalone production that worked well in the audio format.
Adaptation was necessary as the original books rely heavily on a visual theme. With a book like Buster's Undersea Counting Expedition 1 to 10, which uses the theme of arriving undersea life to encourage counting, this meant reworking the text to help readers better imagine a journey under the sea based on audio cues and to encourage young listeners to participate interactively in the adventure as they listen.
Bugville Jr and Bugville Learning Adventures audio books will be available separately and in special collections of multiple titles. Here's a sneak peak at the cover for the first audio collection.
Bugville Jr officially launched (before the holidays too) and debuting in e with 11 titles in full-color. Bugville Jr. is an imprint of developmentally appropriate, interactive books designed to instruct and entertain children ages 6 months and up.
Sneak peaks at the covers follow. Note that "Under Sea 2, 3 with Buster and Friends," "Under Sea 4, 5 with Buster and Friends," and "Under Sea 6, 7 with Buster and Friends" also pictured here are Bugville Learning Adventures (meant for slightly older children than Bugville Jr. books).
Here's the sneak peak:
November, 2010 (Early :-)
An early launch for the continuation of the "Bugville Learning Adventures" series! These are stories and concepts I've used to teach my own children for many years. The series kicked off in audio with the release of "Adventures with Letters and Words." The follow ups were "Every Letter Has a Sound," "Every Number Counts," and "The BIG Number Count Down." So far only "Letters and Words" is in print. The others will follow.
Before those are released though, I'm releasing the stories featuring Super Buster, including "Racing Super Buster Counts and You Can Too" and "Racing Super Buster Letters and You Can Too" debuting in December. We were going to wait until next fall to release, but the stories are finished and just waiting to be read. Out of all the "Buster" books these have always been the kids favorites and my second youngest still reads them from time to time just for fun.
Every year RP and I giveaway books to schools. About $25000 last year including books to schools in the Bronx NY, Puerto Rico, Guam, and an entire 2nd grade that had never before had books of their own. It's a good feeling to give, and letters from kids and teachers really mean a lot.
2010 was to be the last year of the giveaway program, but I'd like to try to keep it going. Also, as the year end approaches, we still have quite a few of this year's allocation on hand. My goal was to make this year the best year of the giveaway program. You can help by reposting and telling others. Visit http://ow.ly/2LNui to learn more. Thank you!
Also, still trying to get Go Indie moving forward.
It is with great pleasure I let you know that I'm putting the finishing touches on Discord, A Daughter of Kings Comic #4. Discord should be out in December, following the release of Rebirth in October. Betrayal and Deliverance have been well received, especially in digital where we are pioneering full-color releases. The four comics will be collected in the 128-page graphic novel, A Daughter of Kings, which I hope will have the A, B and C alt covers from the short printings of each comic collected at the back along with some other cool extras. All copies of the short runs are signed and numbered: 100 A cover, 100 B cover and 250 C cover of each comic. It'll be the same for Rebirth and Discord when they are released. And they're all priced at $6.75. That's a bit higher than many comics, but these are printed on premium paper with a perfect binding at a deluxe, full-size.
I'm also really pleased to let you know Reagent Press has re-priced the re-releases of most of my books. For The Kingdoms and the Elves of the Reaches, the Reader's Choice editions, which are fully illustrated and have 2 full-color covers, are $8.99 now, the Special Illustrated Editions are $9.99 now, and the Signature Illustrated Hardcover Editions are $19.99.
Barnes & Noble does the best job of making it easy to find the various editions. Since Amazon has made it impossible to find the Reader's Choice editions, here are links:
You'll find paperback editions of In the Service of Dragons for $7.99 and hardcover editions for $19.99. Wondering about Bugville Critters books? Well, the standard editions now start at $3.99 for 24-page books and the premium editions now start at $8.99 for 24-page books. Picture books are expensive to produce, so the price increases as page count increases. For example, Explore the Solar System is 42 pages, the standard edition is $5.99 and the premium edition is $11.99.
Hopefully better pricing will make the books more affordable and also improve sales. Higher sales are needed to offset the lower per-book receipts.
I hope faithful readers will continue to let others know about my work. It would be great to see sales levels return to normal levels from the doldrums they've been stuck in. 2011 is the 10th Anniversary of the original e release of the Ruin Mist books. Reagent Press and I are working on some new 10th Anniversary designs, which will include full-color releases from our nearly 500-canvas full-color art library.
I've been working on Bugville Critters for the past 15 years, and finalized the last of the original 28 books a while back. I now have some official publication dates:
· Start Summer Vacation #16 is being released on 9/6.
· Save Their Allowance #17 is being released on 9/15.
· Visit the Library #18 is being released on 10/4.
· Remember Their Manners #19 is being released on 10/18.
· Go to Camp #20 is being released on 11/4.
· Explore the Solar System #21 is being released on 11/15.
· Every Day is Different #22 is being released on 12/2.
· Catching a Cup of Sunshine #23 is being released on 12/14.
After 15 years of hard work to get the books written, illustrated, voiced (for audio), and produced it is exciting to finally be finished with this extended project.
My 100th book was published in 2009. It was a huge milestone for my career, but I feel this accomplishment is an even more important one--at least it is for me personally. When it comes to Bugville Critters, my kids are my biggest fans. They've been listening to the stories most of their lives, and my two daughters continue to listen to the stories almost every night before bed time.
Some good news for fiction fans as well. Since Betrayal, A Daughter of Kings Comic #1, was released on May 17, I've also completed Deliverance and Rebirth. Deliverance's official release date is 9/27. Rebirth's official release date is 10/18. Both are already available in e in some limited outlets as well.
Some Magic Lands news too! Into the Stone Lands, the long awaited sequel to Journey Beyond the Beyond, is working its way through editorial at long last. No official publication date yet, but looks like the beginning of 2011.
Taste Freedom, the tentative title for Ruin Mist: Dawn of the Ages, Book 2, is written and in the draft stages. I'm hopeful that this will be ready for Winter 2011 release. In Bugville news, I have tentative dates for the upcoming releases:
Explore the Solar System (October
Rise of the Fallen (Ruin Mist: Dawn of the Ages, Book 1) is out. Finally! In print, the best value is the $8.99 US paperback, released on June 22. Most ebook editions should be priced at $7.99 US. You can read a free excerpt at http://dragons.reagentpress.com/.
My work on the Ruin Mist comics and graphic novels is progressing well. Betrayal, the first official Ruin Mist comic book, was released at the end of May. It's a full-color comic printed in a deluxe size with a perfect binding at $6.75 US and is the first in the A Daughter of Kings series. In July, the follow up, Deliverance, will be released. I'm on track also for the September release of Rebirth and the November release of Discord. These four comics complete the story of Delinna Alder's journey into exile and in 2011 will be collected in a 124-page graphic novel titled A Daughter of Kings.
Wondering what's next for Ruin Mist comics and graphic novels? Well, I've completed the storyboards for a multiple comic arc that tells the story of two reader favorites: Ansh and Emel Brodst. Readers join Ansh and Emel as they leave Imtal on separate missions. As the story is drawn, inked and colored, I'll begin to add the dialogue and story text. I'm hoping to have the first comic completed for release in Fall/Winter 2011.
In the meantime, final work on Into the Stone Land continues. This long-awaited sequel to Journey Beyond the Beyond returns readers to the world of Doamanse where they join Ray and Kerry as they flee into the stone land to escape the wizard's army. The book is on track for a Winter 2010 release as is the first of two books in The Mynd Star Duology, with the second book likely to be published Spring 2011. Both are completed and working their way through editing and final.
Thank you for reading,
I've been writing stories most of my life, had my first book published in 1995, and writing is my life. It's what I do as both a job and as a hobby. Most people know I also write nonfiction as William Stanek. The William Stanek books are my job, and I love writing them. The Robert Stanek books are my hobby and I love writing them too. It's a strange marriage of two passions.
Although writing the William Stanek books requires my days, my nights, my weekends, and my holidays, I've always kept writing the Robert Stanek books. I steal quiet moments to write a few sentences at a time, work in the wee hours of the night or morning. Whether I'm sitting in my easy chair or out and about, I'm always writing, always scratching out new ideas. The creative process renews me. It helps me think in new ways; it helps me stay fresh; it helps me keep focused--and creative thinking, staying fresh, and keeping focused are important for all writing.
Now on the news Ruin Mist readers have been waiting for:
My books from Reagent Press are available in multiple print, ebook, and audio formats, and are successful across all of these formats. Because of this success, you can enjoy my books whether you want to read them on Ripple Reader, listen to them on OverDrive audio, or enjoy them on Playaway. Ditto for your Android phone, Apple iPhone, Apple iPad, etc.
Here are some links for the print editions of Rise of the Fallen:
Thank you for reading. Take care,
Continuing with the
tradition started with the original Bugville Critters books, the newest
Bugville books were released first in audio. The twelve new adventures for
Buster and his pals are:
Some cool facts
My children are the ones who urged me to get the Bugville Critters books published and that is what I set out to do in 2004. It took nearly four years to get the first set of books into print.
To bring the books to
audio, I began working with voice artists in 2005. It took four years of
work with multiple voice artists to get to the release of all 28 Bugville
Critters audio books.
Bugville news. Reagent Press has released all 16 of my original Bugville Critters books now. The latest releases are small format starting at $5.99. These small-sized editions don't have the bold, beautiful paper of the large, premiums starting at $9.99, but they have the same stories and illustrations. Received another large batch of Letters to Buster (over 100!) recently from classrooms in Vermont, California, Delaware, and Texas. Buster will be sending personal replies to every student!
Ruin Mist news. Most readers know I finished the writing for Ruin Mist: Dawn of the Ages (four books) and Ruin Mist: Battle for Ruin Mist (four books and companion graphic novels) some time ago. I should have official news to share soon and I hope publication dates as well.
Magic Lands news.
Journey Beyond the Beyond was the first Magic Lands books I wrote. The book
was first published in 2002 and readers have been clamoring for the second
book for years. Into the Stone Land (book 2) and Wizard's
Stronghold (book 3) have been completed for some time and I hope to have
some official news to share soon for this series as well.
Hopefully, my last post on this subject, as I really want to return to focusing on positive issues. Many, many readers wrote in to name names, provide source materials, and on and on. A few readers have been tracking these activities for years. They want me to name names, especially with regard to those authors and friends of authors who have been actively involved.
Addendum: So far not a one man (or woman) enough to mea culpa. Instead more shenanigans when my books started outselling theirs on Amazon's kindle. The comedic results here. Genius points though for getting Amazon to fall for one of their old standby shyster tricks yet again. (In case you're wondering, it seems to be a variant of old standy by #2 according to reliable sources. Sure, sure everyone within 1000 miles of where I live knows me; we're all connected and our evil plot is to make people love good books. ;-) Just imagine if they used these bizarre powers for good. Over the past decade, they might have cured cancer or solved the problem of world hunger.
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