Well, I figure it’s time I sit down and lay down an update for those of you who are interested. It’s been a while since I’ve talked about my own books. I am TERRIBLE at self-promotion.
As you may or may not know, Of Honey and Wildfires dropped in April, and it’s going well. It’s taking a bit of time to get its feet off the ground, but I expect that with everything I write. Anyway, here’s the obligatory awful looking promotional thing I made for this book.
Now, for future projects:
I think I have enough of An Elegy for Hope written to be able to say that I have a baby book on my hands. I hit 30k words this weekend, which is just past the point of no return for me (it takes me about a thousand tries to land the start of a book.)
An Elegy for Hope had me stumped for a long time, which is, as it happens, why Of Honey and Wildfires was written. I was completely and absolutely lost as to how to approach the second book in my Bloodlands Trilogy (starting with Seraphina’s Lament). I figured the best way to get a bead on how to approach this second book in the trilogy was to actually step away from it completely, and immerse myself in something radically different. Give my brain some time to breathe, and puzzle over this in the background while I did other things.
Ultimately, this ended up delaying the book, but I do think, now that I’m writing it, this was a smart move on my part. Now, I feel like I have a direction. I have my entry point down (which, as I’ve said before, is the hardest part for me to write) and I’m feeling really good about where it is and where it’s going. This is not something I could have said a few months ago, or even a year ago. I was so frustrated about a year ago, I was honestly about ready to give up on the trilogy as a whole. Now, my time away has refreshed me, and I am all sorts of energized and really enjoying revisiting this world.
As always, it’s not typical. I decided that since I have a weird habit of bucking norms and trends, why stop now? So An Elegy for Hope is starting out at a different point than I’d expected, but I think it’s necessary, and, as luck would have it, I’ve got the third book, A Requiem for Fate, mapped out in my mind as well. I’m trying to be smart with this third one, and making notes as plot points come to me so I don’t forget anything. Hopefully this will help me write the next book with less of a delay.
Glass Rhapsody is my other work in progress. Since both books I’m working on are so dramatically different, I’m writing them both at the same time, switching from one to the other, depending on my mood.
My original intention with Glass Rhapsody (set in the same world as Of Honey and Wildfires) was to have it be a standalone book set in the same world, with the magic system basically being the only thing binding the two, but that’s really not how it’s ending up.
I’m a pantser, and this is both why these surprises keep happening, and why puzzles like An Elegy for Hope land in my lap. I do not plan anything before I write. I have a vague idea, and then when I sit down, the idea either unfolds or it doesn’t. With An Elegy for Hope, the idea was there, but I couldn’t ever find the right approach to it (until now), and now the story is flowing. With Glass Rhapsody, I had a pretty good idea of what I wanted the book to do, but when I sat down to write it, everything I’d wanted to write was basically turned on its head, and I spent about three days going, “Where the hell did that come from and what do I do with it?”
There is some unfinished business between Arlen, Cassandra, and Elroy, and apparently my brain decided that this book was the place for this unfinished business to be… finished. So, while we have brand new characters in this one, the thread that binds this book to the last book is a bit more than just the magic system. Elroy McGlover has a point of view, and Shine Company plays a big role. The world is a bit larger and a bit more complex and diverse, and still full of corporate interest and “shine” tycoons. It’s a whole lot of fun to write, and I’m really enjoying weaving these stories together. I’m also enjoying expanding the world. I’m adding a bit of the Industrial Revolution and my own version of “Manifest Destiny” to this one, which has been a whole lot of fun to research, and is also fertile ground for the direction this book is going.
So, that’s the other thing happening.
My biggest issue with Glass Rhapsody right now is that I obviously need to think of a title for the series (I have a third book in this series in idea form right now, too) since this world is huge, and the magic system is great and I’m having so much fun playing with both.
Lest you’re like “wow, that’s a lot, what else is going on?”
I’ve got another book heretofore unnamed, stewing in my hindbrain, which I’m guessing I’ll attack somewhere after An Elegy for Hope and Glass Rhapsody. It’s a completely different world unlike anything I’ve created before, largely dealing with hunter-gatherer groups of uh… well, I’ll leave it there. Go Paleolithic or go home, I guess.
When I start writing it, and get past my “point of no return”, I’ll let you know.
So, the TL/DR version of all of this is, I’m hoping to have two books to drop on you people very soon, maybe by the end of the year if I bust my butt, but more likely, probably January/February. My hope is to have both Glass Rhapsody and An Elegy for Hope ready to drop at nearly the same time. We’ll see how that works… but that’s my goal for now.