This is the official blog of Scott Swift. Here I will be discussing my stories, the writing process, ideas, etc.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

I just started working a new tale yesterday.  I have it all in my head, now I have to figure out which parts to tell and which parts to leave out! 

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Well, we were FINALLY able to get The Tears of Mars into publication. It should be available on the Nook and Kindle in the next few days. Paperback in a week or so.

We hope you'll find it worth the wait!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

The Tears of Mars is DONE!

Finally, after a year and a half, I was able to type "The End" this morning.

I apologize to all my readers who have been eagerly awaiting its completion, but sometimes life makes demands on you that you have no control over.  In my case, I had to do quite a bit of traveling this past year, including a 5 month stretch in which I flew over 80,000 miles to places as far away as Thailand.  But I never stopped working or thinking about the story, and believe it or not, more than half of this book was written at 30,000 feet!

It really turned out to be a wonderful story, and I'm sure Salesman fans will enjoy reading it as much as I've enjoyed writing it.  Look for the eBook versions to go on sale by the end of the year, and the paperback version shortly after that. 

On to the next Salesman tale!!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Free Kids Books for the Kindle!

I just wanted to let everyone know that starting tomorrow through 12/29, we will be making TWO of my stories available for FREE on the Kindle!  "The Red Queen and the Eye of Divination" and "The Swamp Dragon and the Lake of Fire" will both be available for FREE to all the kids who are lucky enough to recieve a Kindle this holiday season. 

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Darktime Tales Thanksgiving Reading!

I just wanted to let everyone know that Kids Kart Radio will be featuring my reading of "The Red Queen and the Eye of Divination" tonight at 8PM on their Kids and Tween stations.  If you have young kids, be sure to tune in!  

Friday, October 28, 2011

Darktime Tales on KART Kids Radio!

I just wanted to let everyone know that KART Kids Radio will be featuring my reading of "The Werewolves and the Sword of Medusa" at 8PM on Halloween. 

Be sure to tune in for a scary, spooky story! 

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Tears of Mars

Ok, so I've been working on this really great new story called "The Tears of Mars".  Like most of my stories I know all the basic elements, but something I didn't expect is happening - it's sort of turning into a continuation of "The Wizard's Tontine" (one of my favs!).  I had planned on revisiting that tale one day, but certainly not in this story! 

I like how it's turning out so far (not that I have much choice - the story is kind of just finding it's own way), and I know how all the original elements fit in, but it's just not what I expected when I sat down to write.  In many ways I think it's better than the original idea I had, and it definitely helps to bring closure (for me at least) to Tontine. 

I'll be sure to let you all know how it turns out!

Friday, August 12, 2011

The Pirates of the Gargoyle Valley is in production!

It took a little longer than I wanted, but the The Pirates of the Gargoyle Valley has finally been released into production!  It should start appearing in the various distribution channels (Amazon Paperback, Kindle, Nook, iPad and Sony eReader) over the next few days to weeks. 

I hope you all enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


About two months I was interviewed by KidInterviews, a Youtube channel run by kids who do interviews with authors and other famous people.  They just posted the video yesterday.  Check it out! 


Sunday, May 22, 2011

The Pirates of the Gargoyle Valley

Well, I just finished writing my most recent book, The Pirates of the Gargoyle Valley.  I just love it when a good story comes together and I get to type "The End". 

In this tale the Salesman finds himself in a hidden valley ruled by gargoyles.  They are intent on keeping their existence a secret from the world, and as such, make anyone who enters the valley a prisoner.  The pirates wandered in several generations ago, and have been kept there by the gargoyles ever since.  Now the Salesman shows up, and the gargoyles think they can keep him prisoner too! 

Those of you who know the Salesman, know that's never going to happen! 

It's a fun story with lots of adventure, magic and humor.  There's even a romance between one of the pirates son's and a gargoyle princess!

Several of my test readers recieved their copies of the story today, and I'm looking forward to their feedback.  Then starts the whole editing, proofing, cover design, conversion (for ebook readers) and promotion process.  Not as much fun as writing to be sure, but still an important part of getting the story from me to you. 

If all goes well, the book should be available for purchase sometime over the summer.  I'll be sure to let everyone know when that happens!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Mrs. Toole's Class

Wow!  What a wonderful day!

I was invited to read to a class of students in Park Ridge N.J.  I've done readings before, but this was the first time reading to a group of kids who were familiar with the salesman and his tales.  Their teacher, Mrs. Toole, has been reading them stories from the Anthology all year, and invited me to come in and read a bit from my new book, The Innkeeper's Vampire. They loved it! 

They were so full of questions I could barely keep up!  I answered them as best I could, and promised them I would answer more up here in the coming weeks. Mrs. Toole also had them write book reports on the stories, and a few of the kids stood up and read them aloud!  I really had a terrific time, and even let them in on a few clues as to why the salesman is sending his wife money (they're buying land, lots of land).  And no, I didn't tell them (nor will I tell you!) what they plan on doing with it.  You'll just have to wait until I get around to writing about that part of the salesman's life. 

Here's a picture from today's reading (I had to block out some of the kids faces for obvious reasons):
Thanks again Mrs Toole, you have a great bunch of kids there!

Monday, April 11, 2011

"Where do your stories come from?"

Ok, one of my test readers saw the blog and sent me a question via email (he's too young to have an account on blogspot so his parents forwarded me the question). 

"Where do your stories come from?"

It's a pretty simple question, and one I planned to get to eventually, so here goes...

I can't speak to how other writers get their ideas, but for me at least, the stories have always kind of just "been there". I'll see something like a cool picture, or even an ad on TV, and BAM!  The story is there.    

I do have some control over how things play out (the sequence of events for example), but major plot elements (a tiny house on the outside with a huge inside, who lives there, a magic birdcage, and a warning) are all "written in stone" for me so to speak. I’ve tried changing them but it just never works. 

When the salesman walks into a room, I know exactly what it looks like. I can see what color it is, what the furniture looks like, how many windows it has, and so on. I even know what it smells like. Same with the characters. I know exactly what they look like, what they sound like when they laugh, etc.

You might also be surprised to learn that even though I don't give the characters names, I do know their complete histories. I know the backgrounds of every character I've ever written about, even if they only appear in the story briefly. I know how many brothers and sisters they have, did they grow up rich or poor, how educated they are, etc. The whole she-bang. Again, all this information is just "there" for me. I do get to pick and choose how much of it to tell, which is a good thing I suppose because if I included everything I "know" about all the characters I'd never get to tell the story!

One last thing - I'm always learning new "stuff" about the salesman's world from the stories. It's probably the part of the writing process that I like best. For example, if you asked me last year "How do gargoyles have kids?" I would have said, "What the heck are you talking about??" But now that I'm writing a story that includes a bunch of gargoyles, I know *exactly* how they have kids (in case you're wondering, they have litters of 4-6 offspring like cats or dogs, but only once every 10 years). Now that bit of information might or might not make it into the story you read, but it's a "fact" about the salesman's world I know nonetheless.

Well, that's it for now. I hope I answered your question B----.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Opening Day at the Blog!


It has been almost a year since I published the first of the Traveling Salesman's Darktime Tales, so I thought it appropriate that I start my much requested blog at this time.  I hope to make this a place where my readers can engage me in discussion, learn a bit about the writing process, and talk about the characters found in my stories. 

For those of you who don't know, The Traveling Salesman's Darktime Tales are a series of children's stories, books, ebooks and audio books meant for kids 8 and up.  They are based on bedtime stories I told my own children for years about a mystical, magical Traveling Salesman who is also a wizard of sorts.  He sells magical items (which sometimes come with warnings), travels around, has adventures helping townspeople, fighting werewolves, witches, dragons and all sorts of magical creatures.

The stories are exciting and engaging, but not too intense for younger kids. While they do include some violence, you'll never find any gore or horror.  For example, in my latest book, "The Innkeeper's Vampire", I never once use the word "blood" and no one is actually bitten.  My wonderful test readers (a group of about a dozen kids) don't seem to mind, and their parents really appreciate it.

The salesman himself is never given a name, nor is he described physically.  I know what he looks like to me, but to each reader he's different, and that's part of his magic. He could be of any race, any background, and for the most part the stories could be taking place anywhere in the world.  I deliberately write the stories this way so kids can determine for themselves who he is, what he looks like, etc.  He has a history, and I leave clues about his life away from his travels throughout.

The stories range in length from about 1,500 words (for the younger kids) up to around 15,000 words (for everyone else).  The audio books (yes, that's me reading them!) run from just over 10 minutes to almost 40 minutes.  I like having a mix of lengths like this because it gives kids an opportunity to read a story in a night or two, although my more recent stories are trending a bit longer (can't help it, that's just the way they come out!). 

I thoroughly enjoy bringing these tales to kids all over the world, and sincerely hope that you and your family will join me on this exciting adventure!