It's been a very long February for me. Some unhappy family issues pulled me away from writing for about two weeks, and I'm only now caught up. That said, a lot has happened recently that I want to fill you in on, so I'm going to write another long post full of fun information. Read on:
Submissions to NineStar Press:
That's it for news for February. I know there's a lot going on, and it's probably going to continue being a fire hose deluge of things to do until at least this time next year. I'm enjoying it, though, and I'm so glad you're all sticking through it all with me as we all patiently wait for all my books to become available again.
I can't tell you how many blog posts I've written this month where, just before I was ready to post, I got more news and had to rewrite. I think this is my third or fourth attempt to get out a blog post, but there's so much to tell you I'm just going to post what I have, and I may end up writing another blog post tomorrow. Either way, this post is really long, but I promise there's exciting stuff inside. Read on:
Submissions to NineStar Press:
This past month has been a bit crazy, so I haven't been able to keep you all updated with news as I learn it. I do have a lot of fun things to share! First, I have potential release dates. They're subject to change, but as long as I get all my edits done on time (which as you'll see below I'm not doing too well at) they shouldn't change too much. Mark your calendars:
Insurrection has already gone through one round of edits. I'm expecting the second round to appear sometime this month, which should finish up the editing process for this story. Insurrection is now available for pre-order at LT3 for a 15% discount (plus more because of LT3's birthday sale), so you can get your copy now. It's also been listed on Goodreads if you want to add it to your to-read list: https://www.goodreads.com/book...
I received the first round of edits for If A Butterfly Don't Fly, so that story has started moving forward too. At first, the edits for Butterfly didn't seem to be too bad, but then I found where the editor asked me to add in a new chapter. The reasons for that new chapter are solid, so I started writing it, but it's been fighting with me and now the edits are late. LT3 was kind enough to grant me an extension for the edits, so I'm hoping to have them done really soon.
The reviews for Kelpie Blue have been beyond stellar. Everyone that has left a comment has agreed that Blue, my lively Kelpie with the sharp teeth, is adorable and the story itself is a ton of fun. If you've read Kelpie Blue, it would be awesome if you could pop over to Goodreads or Amazon and leave a quick review.
As for writing, unfortunately edits take precedence. That means I didn't finish writing Ground of Resurrection in March like I had hoped. However, that doesn't mean I can't plan the rest of my stories out mentally. The main characters in Codified, the third book in my Magnified series, have been stuck in the basement and I've been struggling to figure out how to get them out. I think I've come up with an idea, but until I see how it flows on paper I don't know whether the idea is a viable one. In Ge-Mi: Part Two, they've all arrived at the graveyard, but I need to figure out the ceremony there in order to get them out of the graveyard and into the scene that really starts the romantic drama. I think I'm starting to get a good idea of how to move it forward, but until the edits are out of the way I can't work on it.
I know it's been a while since I've posted anything, but I have a good reason. The third round of edits for Kelpie Blue arrived and I had to focus on getting those done. There were a lot more edits than I expected for a third round and the due date came and went far too quickly. I have finally gotten the edits back to LT3. Kelpie Blue comes out in less than a month and I can't wait! Make sure you pre-order your copy today so you can get a 15% discount: lessthanthreepress.com/books...
Heartbeat, a story I submitted to LT3 as a reprint, was accepted for republishing. It was previously published as part of LT3's Satisfaction Guaranteed anthology and is the prequel to my Trickster's Eye series. I don't know what the editing process will bring, but as of right now I can say nothing substantive has changed from before. I can't promise it will stay that way as edits always tend to be more involved than I expect. I will keep you updated as I learn more.
I am in the process of renewing the contract for The Oracle's Flame, the first story in my Oracle series. It would have gone out of print next month, but now the run will be extended. There shouldn't be any changes to the cover and I don't know if there will be any edits completed. I recommended a round of edits for Road to Revenge when that contract was renewed, but I haven't heard anything about that happening. I don't know that it will happen for Flame either. I will let you know as I learn more.
I don't have any news about any of my upcoming stories. I'm expecting the second round of edits for Ground of Insurrection and the first round of edits for If A Butterfly Don't Fly any day now. I also don't have any potential release dates to share, although I expect Insurrection to be scheduled for May or June, Butterfly for sometime from June to September, and The Coup and the Prince for fourth quarter 2018. I'm hoping LT3 will be able to give me more information soon.
I have received the first round of edits for Ground of Insurrection. A glance through says they'll be very straightforward, so hopefully I'll have them completed and back to LT3 for a second round quickly. The editor said the story was "fantastic", which I was overjoyed to see. This story gave me some trouble as I was writing it, trouble that is unfortunately repeating itself as I'm trying to write the sequel, so hearing it did turn out well after all that was really wonderful. Now that the edits are moving along, LT3 can start planning release dates. I expect to learn a tentative date for Ground of Insurrection sometime after I return the edits, so I had better get to working on them now because I'm as anxious to learn the release date as I'm sure you are.
I don't really have all that much else to share with you today. It's been a while since I posted anything so I wanted to say hi and to let you all know that I am trying to work on some of the stories you're anticipating. Mostly I've been planning, which doesn't sound super exhilarating, but is absolutely necessary to move my stories forward. For example, in the next Supernatural Consultant book (tentatively titled Dragon Trick, but that might change) I know the ultimate goal of the story, but I haven't quite figured out how to get the characters there yet. I can't start writing again until I figure that bit out.
I've been plucking away at Ge-Mi: Part Two as well. I've said it before in regards to this story, but I'll say it again anyway: it's slow going. I'm setting up so many little things right now that will have an impact all the way to the end and I really want to get them right. That means the story is only growing by a few hundred words each time I work on it. That's better than nothing at all, but it's not a lot in terms of how much I still have to do.
Aside from that, I'm patiently waiting for the next round of edits for Kelpie Blue to appear. I'm hoping they'll wait until after Ground of Insurrection is back with the editor, but as March and the imminent release date looms closer, I know they'll have to appear soon. We're also nearing the time when If A Butterfly Don't Fly should begin the editing process (especially since it was accepted for publishing at the same time as Ground of Insurrection), so I expect that story will also appear in my inbox sometime in the near future. There's so much to look forward to!
LT3 emailed me to let me know Road to Revenge, the first book in my Road To duology, will be going out of print on January 1, 2018 (tomorrow). They asked if I was interested in renewing the contract, to which I immediately replied yes. This isn't going to be a huge rigamarole like with Dragon's Hoard. Road to Revenge will get shined up a bit with a quick edit, but it shouldn't even have an interruption in sales. Dragon's Hoard was down for weeks while it went through editing and getting new covers, which Road to Revenge honestly doesn't need. Still, it's nice to see Road to Revenge getting a bit of spotlight for once.
On another note, I completed the second round of edits for Kelpie Blue mostly on time. They are headed back to the editor for another round, but I can really see the improvement in the story so far. It's far smoother to read through and now that the edits aren't making me want to tear my hair out, I'm relearning to love my crazy kelpie. March seems so far away, but it will come soon enough, and then all of you will be able to read it too. I can't wait.
I have written over 1k words in Ge-Mi: Part Two today and I hope to continue adding more to the story the rest of this long weekend. It's not even close to being complete, but I'm liking where it's going. I'm building up right now to introduce a new character that will add some tension to Nevada and Taylor's relationship. I am also working towards getting the plot reintroduced, which requires setting up some twists and turns that I hope readers will enjoy. There's a lot of little things to get right, so it's slow going, but it is going and that's what's important.
The reprint of Hadash Aviv, my short story crime thriller, is coming out next week! LT3 is having an amazing sale, so make sure you pre-order your copy soon. I'm super excited about this story coming out as a stand alone. It may be short, but it's definitely one of my favorites. That's why I was so happy LT3 agreed to reprint it. I hope you'll like it too!
I'm still chugging away at the edits for Kelpie Blue. The hardest part is that the editor pointed out something that I completely agree has to be fixed, but getting it fixed correctly is proving to be quite a challenge. I think this time I may be able to get it right, but there's still so much to get done and the due date is coming up fast. I still absolutely love the story and the characters I've created for this unique world of the fae, but I know I will love it even more once the edits are done and gone.
The Coup and The Prince was accepted for publishing at LT3! It's a cute stand alone story that I've been working on for the last two years and I'm super excited to see it heading towards publishing. Hopefully it will tide you all over until I am able to complete Ge-Mi: Part Two and/or the next Supernatural Consultant book (which I know you are all waiting for).
Speaking of writing, I've been a very bad author. Instead of working on anything on my to-do list (which is far too long), I started writing a contemporary story. It's about soccer star with a serious injury, the nurse caring for him, and the gang trying to extort them both. It's an idea I've had in my head for a while now, but I never actually wrote it down. I went on a trip recently and while I was bored on the airplane I couldn't help typing up the first 4k words. It's not anywhere close to being complete, so I've added it to my to-do list. My plan is to put that story aside to work on something else, so presumably my next blog post will have some good writing news.
What is it about getting a big stack of edits that makes me want to run the other way? I don't know if this is a me thing or an authors in general thing, but edits suck. They're this necessary evil staring at me from the abyss. I know I have to work on them, but I can't help putting them off. What this means is I took one look at the edits for Kelpie Blue, gulped, and then scurried back to the safe realm of writing. I have completed writing The Red Apple Witch when I should have been working on my edits.
Those of you that have been following me for a while know that The Red Apple Witch is a fairy tale I started writing soon after Cinder-Elle came out in 2012. Every once in a while I poked at it, but for the most part the story lay stagnant in my computer. Then I had the idea to combine a bunch of my fairy tales into one compilation and I said to myself, I have to finish this one too. Well, I've finally done it. The Red Apple Witch still needs a lot of editing, especially the older parts of the story, but I am so glad to finally say it's complete. This means I have five fairy tales complete and just about ready for submission, one tale that I need to rework the ending (Thunderbird), and two more that I need to write. I recently read through A Heart's Dream, which I've been stuck on for a bit, and realized the reason I was stuck was I was trying to force the story to be 30k words when it was really only calling for 15k. The other story I need to work on is Trip Trop Trail, which is a Billy Goat Gruff retelling with a twist. I have the main points figured out, but I can't decide whether I want it set in the modern day (which would be the only one of my fairy tales in that setting) or if I should do a more fantasy-like setting instead. Once I figure that out, I'll be able to start writing.
Supernatural Consultant, Volume Two came out recently. This is the second print compilation of the series and it picks up where Volume One left off. It includes Dragon Detective, Dragon Soldier, Dragon Adventure, and Dragon Home. You can buy your copy at LT3 today and it's also available at your favorite print retailer (but it's cheaper for you to buy from LT3).
Kelpie Blue is also available for pre-order at LT3. They're having a very nice sale right now, so you can get it for 32% off: https://lessthanthreepress.com/books... It comes out on March 21, 2018, which will be here soon. (And, yes, I have been working on those edits. Don't worry.)
There are so many wonderful authors out there participating in NaNo. I see them posting their word counts for the day/week/etc and I am very impressed by everything they've accomplished. I wish I could emulate them, but I've tried and in the end I decided that NaNo just wasn't for me. Being on a specific schedule where I have to write X number of words per day with the intention of completing a story by the end of the month doesn't work for me. Having that much structure instead stresses me out. I see how much I didn't get accomplished the previous day, add that word count to the amount I didn't get finished that day, and it all starts piling up. In the end, all I get out of NaNo is stress-induced writer's block which translates into equally ineffective December writing.
At the same time, I can't say that I've managed to significantly increase the word counts of any of my stories even though I haven't been doing NaNo. I've done some planning for my stories, including the final fairy tale story I need to write. I have also read through my currently out of print story Heart's Tournament. I gave it a minor edit and decided to resubmit it to LT3, but then I came to a dilemma. The reason I didn't immediately resubmit it when it first went out of print is that I had always planned to write the sequel. I still haven't written said sequel, but I have started planning the prologue. The question becomes, do I resubmit now in the hopes that I'll actually write the sequel this time, or do I write the sequel first and then submit them both together? There's pros and cons to both options, but what it really boils down to is that I already have too many ongoing projects on my to-do list. Until I finish a few more stories, I really can't start writing this sequel. Either I have to resubmit and (if LT3 accepts it again) hope I get the sequel completed before it goes out of print again, or I have to hold off for what could be a few years before I resubmit with the sequel attached. I'll let you all know what I decide.
I started working on The Red Apple Witch after that and I was just getting into it when I got an email from LT3 with the second round of edits for Kelpie Blue. Turns out that while some of the things I fixed last time worked, a number of the changes I made either weren't right or didn't change enough. Technically there's less to do this time around, but it's still a big project. The sooner I get it done, the sooner I can return to writing. Please wish me luck.
Ge-Mi: Part Two
May 18, 2020
Mell Eight is an author writing with NSP. For more information about Mell and her writing, please visit her website: http://melleightfiction.