My new action-adventure e-zine, Hatchet Force Journal, went live on Amazon.com a week ago. I've been averaging a few sales a day, enough so I know it's not just a handful of loyal readers who're always commenting on this site. It's an exciting but nerve-wracking feeling to know that people you've probably never even corresponded with are now buying your product, but that's what happens when you take the Big Leap and click "Save and Publish".
So far the responses I've gotten have been great. Jim Cobb over at Survival Weekly declares that HFJ is "...awesome drenched in win". Jim makes an especially insightful comment about my essay, The Children of Vietnam, noting how I discuss "...the interesting dichotomy of being part of a generation who grew out of the hippy and counter-culture movements, yet became fascinated with violent movies, gory books, and really what should be considered to be the early days of torture porn."
Adventure and westerns author James Reasoner writes over at Rough Edges that HFJ is "...a fine piece of work". James was, as best as I can figure, the second person to purchase the Journal, and he was kind enough to give me a lot of good advice in private about what can be done to make it better. I'm currently reading one of James' e-book westerns, The Hunted, and it's a lot of fun.
Special Forces veteran and weapons expert Jack Murphy, who can now add "Self-Published Badass" to his resume, gave a review of HFJ over at Reflexive Fire, noting "Overall, Issue One is a solid effort and much more worthy of a periodical reader’s time than what is frequently available on physical news stands". Jack's new paramilitary action novel Reflexive Fire went on sale the same day as the Journal, and if you're a fan of action, intrigue, and conspiracy, you need to check it out.
Paul Bishop over at his super-cool blog Bish's Beat put up a promotional post, and over at Amazon he was kind enough to give me a concise and almost embarrassingly good review. Bish says HFJ "...kicks off a whole new world, not only for Men's Action and Adventure novels, but for the whole concept of fan-type zines for niche interests. That said, The Hatchet Force Journals is one of the most professional entries in the field. Good articles, great interviews, and strong reviews". Bish has just re-released a couple of his own book as e-books, namely Hot Pursuit and Deep Water. Do the man a solid and check 'em out.
I've received a number of other positive responses, both public and private, and they have all been very encouraging. I've requested from a number of professionals that they give me an "extraordinarily blunt" critique of the first issue, and even when there were a number of suggestions for improvement, as well as praises for what definitely worked, all have said they thoroughly enjoyed the Journal's debut.
With Issue #1 barely out the door, I'm already planning #2. From here on in, every issue is going to have a featured theme, plus a number of regular columns focusing in various topics. The theme for Issue 2 is going to be "21st Century Action & Adventure" and will focus on movies, books, and other adventure media from the last 10 years. I'm aiming for a release date some time in the second half of August.
Thank you all again for your support!