Update 05/27/23: Type-in for Trial of the Ornic 2 Finished!

That’s right! I finished the type-in for the sequel to The Baker’s Wife, Trial of the Ornic #2, this past week! I’m so happy. It’s been a long time coming, and now, though there’s probably still some bugs to work out (there’s always bugs to work out), the core of the story feels right.

Uploading it to the various retailers is still a ways away, but I’ll give you a definite publication date as soon as I have one.

In other news, I’m moving along on the rough draft for Trial of the Ornic #3. I’m about a thousand words in and I’m really pleased with where the story is beginning and how well it’s flowing from the events of the previous book. I’ll try to post updates on that as I can, but as we get closer to the publication date for Trial of the Ornic #2, this blog is going to have more and more promotional news on it. Just so you know.

Thank you for reading. I’ll post again soon.


Progress Update and Statement on AI Use in My Publishing

Not much progress this past week, though yesterday and today weren’t too bad. I’m currently 65% of the way through the write-in for the final part of this sequel to The Baker’s Wife.

(That’s a mouthful. Really looking forward to finalizing the title, lol.)

On a completely different note, there’s been some talk and quite a bit of controversy regarding AI in the online writer spaces I visit. I’m not going into the details here. All I’m going to mention in this post is that some writers are using AI in their writing now, and publishing what they’ve built using that technology. And some self-publishers are talking about using AI to make their covers.

I’ve looked into it a little. I’ve played with an AI art generator, but haven’t messed with ChatGPT or any other AI writing app. I’ve only heard the results of other writers’ experiments.

So far, I see AI, in the future, becoming indispensable for those who already know their craft. I don’t see a reason for me to use it now. The tech isn’t nearly mature enough.

And even if it were, I don’t currently see how it would benefit the way I approach writing. Those writers I respect who are using it say it’s like working with a co-writer, and right now, that doesn’t appeal.

Not to mention AI, when it comes to writing, still has one fatal flaw. Computers can’t grasp emotions and the nuances that come with them.

So, up to this date and for the foreseeable future, I will not be using AI to write my books.

This includes character generation, mapmaking, plot discovery and outlining, as well as the actual writing.

This applies strictly to me. I’m not going to judge any writer who finds AI helpful and uses it, even to help write books.

I also have no intention of using AI generated art to create my covers. However, I do use stock photos, which sometimes includes illustrations, and I’m aware that some stock art out now is AI generated. Because the legal aspects of AI still haven’t been worked out, I am going to do my best to avoid any artwork that looks like it might have been AI generated.

For now, I’m going to continue using stock art and designing my own covers until I can afford to pay a cover designer and/or illustrator.

What about you? What are your thoughts on AI?

Brief Progress Update: May 8, 2023

I’m still working on the write-in for the sequel to The Baker’s Wife. Right now I’m over a quarter of the way through the changes in part three (the last part of the book) and feeling more than a little amazed at how close I am to finishing this section of the story, and the sequel overall. It’s slow going but that there’s progress at all makes me very happy.

Looking forward to finishing it so you can see some of my favorite scenes.

I hope life is treating you well. I’ll post another update as soon as I have something worth talking about!

Storytime Blog Hop: A Different Kind of Raise

Hey everyone, this is my contribution to the Storytime Blog Hop. Hope you enjoy it.

Check out the links at the end for other stories in the tour. We have some fantastic authors in this group.

A Different Kind of Raise

By Amy Keeley

Elisa raced toward the advancing demon army, sword glowing bright. A demon swept up to her, talons outstretched.

Whoosh! A spear knocked it out of the path of her sword.

The warrior who had done this smiled brightly, as if doing her a favor.

She watched as the demon scarred the warrior’s leg. Frustration nearly made her scream.

What would it take to get a decent battle scar?

Those with scars got three times the pay and life in the protected world of the Sphere, where they and their families could spend the rest of their lives in peace, safety, and luxury.

All because they had proven their bravery.

But had she gotten this yet? Noooo. Not a scar anywhere on her and it had been three months. Three months of other warriors stepping in, protecting her, even though she had the most demon kills of any in her unit.

Hang it all, she was going to prove her bravery if it killed her.

Sensing another demon, she ran toward it before it landed. This time she saw a scrawny warrior heading to intercept.

This time, she didn’t back away.

This time, she leaped onto the demon’s head, accidentally kicking the warrior in the shoulder.

Apologies later.

Her sword slid through the demon as if it were air. And killed it instantly.

No scar.

“What do I gotta do?” she shouted. Looking at the man she’d kicked out of the way, he annoyed her with his wide-eyed stare. “Got something better to do?” She scanned the battlefield for yet another target.

“You’re really good at this,” the man said. “I mean, they said you were good but I had no idea.”

She didn’t see any more demons. She began walking toward the Boundary where this round of demon army had come from. There were sure to be more there.

“Hey, can I follow you?” the man said. “The name’s Derek. I was told that, even though you don’t have a scar—”

She whirled on him, this scrawny guy who looked like he should be in a library, not a battlefield. And then realized who he was. Derek, son of the best demon fighter around, Chason Demondeath.

No snapping. “Okay, but stay silent. Got it?”

He nodded enthusiastically.


Ten minutes later, a demon surged at them from behind a bluff. “I got it!” Elisa yelled. “Stay out of my way!”

“Okay !” Derek called back.

She leaped up. Using a nearby tree to gain more leverage, she flew above the demon. Sword out, she got ready for the kill.

Not too fast this time, though. Need the scar.

“Behind you!” Derek yelled.

She whipped around just as the demon tried to whiplash her with its tail.

It would hit right on the leg. Ooo, good. Very good.

A body barreled into hers, knocking her out of the way. Derek. He turned and faced the demon.

“Oh, no you don’t!” She yelled.

No one was taking her scar this time. No one!

Derek threw a small sphere along the ground. It rolled up under the demon, then surged outward with a million divine threads, blue radiance nearly purple against the demon’s red skin.

Then pulled the demon into it.

“Ha, it worked!” Derek grinned as if he’d gotten a million scars. “I was hoping there might be a way to reduce injuries during battle but—”

Elisa balled her fists. “You took my scar!”

Derek frowned in confusion, then simply frowned. “I kept you safe.”

“Safe? My mom and other farmers like her are in danger every day. I get a scar and we get to live safe and free for the rest of our lives within the Sphere. And you took it.”

His jaw set. “That hit would have destroyed more than you realize.”

“I don’t care, as long as my family is safe.” She scoffed. “You shouldn’t even be here.”

“No, I shouldn’t. I should be in R&D, researching ways to keep hotheads like you from sacrificing themselves. The only reason I am here is because of my dad. I live in that place you want to send your family. I’ve seen the ones with demon scars. Demons poison us if they hit us, did you know that?”

She froze. No one, at any point in her training, had mentioned that.

“The ones with scars,” he continued, “live just long enough to see all those promises be given to a very small percentage in the Sphere. Any family they bring with them become servants of people like my dad. And nothing stops anyone from sending their brothers and sisters back into the war.”

The bottom dropped out of her stomach. “It’s a lie?”

“To keep you eager to fight. And take enormous risks.”

She sniffed and looked at his sphere, her hopes gone. “Wait, if this is true, why did you want to follow me?”

He looked at the sphere as well. “You’re a fantastic fighter with an enormously high kill count, and yet you still haven’t gotten a scar.”

She waited, curious now.

“I don’t belong here, but I’m going to take this as a chance to test my devices. I need someone who’s exceptionally good without being suicidal, someone whose abilities I can count on so I don’t have to focus on more than the tech. It’s not three times the pay and a life of peace,” he smirked briefly, “but you and I might change this war into something that can end without destroying most of us. What do you say?”

Poison. Lies. No hope. She scoffed and turned away, a smile starting to form. “You coming? We’ve got some non-scarring demon killing to do.”

Thank you for reading! I’d love to hear what you thought of this story in the comments below.

And don’t forget to check out the other stories in the blog hop! We have some great writers here!

April Storytime Blog Hop Participants

Royal Assassin by Vanessa Finaughty

The Big Bad Wolf and the Easter Hare by Katharina Gerlach

Earthquake Aftermath by Bill Bush

The Gynnos Seeker Project by Juneta Key

Cursed by Barbara Lund

A Different Kind of Raise by Amy Keeley

Night At The Museum by Vanessa Wells

Flowers For Angela by Curtis Phills

Ninea by Chris Makowski

Archive by Gina Fabio

Quick Update: 4/15/23

Sorry it’s been a while since my last update. Life has been crazier than usual.

I haven’t had nearly as much time as I’d hoped to work on the write in for the sequel to The Baker’s Wife. I’m barely at the end of part one. Hoping to get more time in this week.

However, I have been able to get some of the notes together for work on book three in the series. I’m looking forward to finishing the write-in so I can actually start writing the next book in this series.

Will update again when I can.

Update on Sequel to The Baker’s Wife; Discounted Books at Smashwords

Finally finished the read-through for the sequel to my romantic fantasy (?) The Baker’s Wife. A very enlightening experience since it’s been about ten years since I published the first part of that sequel under the title, The Lord’s Tale.

The title will change a little when it’s republished with all three parts in one book. And I’ve changed a few plot points, but nothing too big. Mostly, the changes are little things for the sake of clarification.

Anyway, the next step is to type in the changes I’ve noted. After that, the book goes through a copyedit and proofreading, then I publish it.

The story feels solid enough, I’m going to start working on book three of this series, title TBD. Looking forward to continuing Zhiv and Krysilla’s journey!


The Smashwords Read an Ebook Week site-wide promotion starts today and I’m in it!

All my books are on sale at a discounted price, with one exception. Plus, there’s some great authors offering some great books as part of this event.

Here’s the link to the promotion page, if you want to check it out.

Read an Ebook Week Promotion Page

And here’s the link to my author page, which lists all my discounted books.

Amy Keeley’s Author Profile at Smashwords

I hope you take a moment to look through the books on the promotion page. I’ve found some wonderful stories through this promotion and recommend at least taking a glance at what’s available.

You might find yourself pleasantly surprised!

Have fun! I’ll update you again as soon as I can.

Update and Storytime Blog Hop

I didn’t make nearly as much progress this week as I’d hoped. I’m almost at the halfway point in this re-read of the last part of the sequel to The Baker’s Wife (geez that’s a mouthful).

I’ll see what I can do over the weekend. My current goal is to be finished with the re-read before February. I may have to adjust that.

On a different note, the Storytime Blog Hop for January is up. The blog hop is a collection of stories written by various authors and posted on various blogs.

This time around has a dragon who can’t figure out how to breathe fire, a guy who swears he saw a mermaid and is dead set on proving it, a Reaper with a soul-collecting assignment that goes pear-shaped, and more.

It’s a good collection. Here’s the link to the first story if you want to take a look.

Fishing Expedition by Laurie Hicks

Back to reading/writing. Talk to you soon.

Quick Update 1/24/23

Still doing the re-read of part three. About a third of the way through. Hope to have the reading part done by the end of the week and the write-in part done the week after that. We’ll see.

On a different note, I’m changing my approach to social media, and will be changing the sidebar on this site to reflect that. More on that later.

Hope all is well with you. Will update again soon.

Quick Update 1/7/23

Finished re-reading The first and second parts of the sequel to The Baker’s Wife. Not many notes needed for part one but part two is going to have a couple of major changes.

Began part three’s re-read yesterday. Bracing myself for an avalanche of notes as I read, but I’m thrilled at how close I am to publishing this sequel.

Once I’ve finished part three, the copyedit begins, and I start work on the first part of Trial of the Ornic #3!

(For those who are wondering why the sudden focus on a series I’d put on hiatus years ago, there are three main reasons.

First, I’ve been learning just how frustrating it is for a reader to start a series that doesn’t look like it will ever end. I began this series back in 2013. It’d be nice to give those fans, however many there are, some closure.

Second, I’ve never finished a series before. I’d like to see if it’s possible and my favorite characters right now are in Trial of the Ornic.

Finally, in the time since I first started this series until now, I’ve become very aware of just how short life is. I know I should be writing to market, treating this like a business, and so on, but, given life, who knows when any of us are going to move on, you know?

I’d rather write the things I love and market them as best I can. So yeah. I’m back to this series. I’m going to finish this series, and then I’m going to see what project I want to do next.)

See you next week!

New Year; Quick Update

I’m not at all ready for the new year to begin. No black-eyed peas made, nor collard greens. It’s been a long year, and I’m hoping 2023 is better.

I don’t remember what my goals were at the beginning of the year and don’t want to spend the time looking. But here are some of the things I’m going to work on this year:

  • Publish the sequel to The Baker’s Wife
  • Draft the next book in the series (Trial of the Ornic #3) with an eye on wrapping things up in book #4 (if a fourth book is even necessary).
  • A print version of Loki, Son of Laufey. Sales are good enough it’s worth the effort.

If I just get those three things done, I’ll be very happy with my productivity for the year.

Speaking of, I’ve finished re-reading The Baker’s Wife, added all the tweaks that needed to be added, and uploaded the most recent version to most major retailers. Amazon already has the updated version available.

I’m halfway through the re-read of the sequel and I’ve found a number of points where the story was not as good as it could be. Looking forward to fixing them and getting this story done and out.

I’ll update again in the next week or so.

Happy New Year, everyone!