I hope everyone had a happy holiday season and a good new year. So far, my new year is starting off well. I have lots of news to share, but first I want to tell you my new years resolution for writing: Get all my edits done on time! Conversely, if I'm struggling with the edits, contact LT3 well ahead of the deadline so we can work something out before it gets away from us both. I'm not going through that again this year, and it's not right that I put LT3 on the spot like that. 2019 is a new year with a new start where I will juggle my real life and my writing life competently.
With that out of the way, on to my news:
Edits have returned. The Sentinel's Prophesy has arrived in my inbox to start the editing process, which I'm super exited about. There's always a lot to do for the first round of edits, but nothing crazy jumped out at me after a quick glance through. I started working on it already and I hope to get a big chunk completed this weekend. By Sunday night I should know how crazy this round will be, and how many rounds of edits this particular story will need. I want to get Prophesy back to LT3 quickly because I'm expecting edits for the two postponed stories to appear at any moment. Both If A Butterfly Don't Fly and The Coup and the Prince went back for more edits. I don't know what the timeline is for either story, which means I don't know when to expect them back, and in the interest of avoiding overlapping edits (which is one of the things I had issues with last year), getting Prophesy completed soon is a high priority.
Two of my stories have had their contracts renewed. Road to Home, book two of my contemporary spy thriller series, will continue to be sold through LT3 without interruption. I will not be making any edits or changes, so if you own the book don't worry, and if you don't own the book, you have plenty of time to get your copy.
The other renewed contract belonged to Wings of the Stars, a short sci-fi story I wrote for LT3's A Loose Screw collection. Wings of the Stars is technically the second story in a series I've always loosely called Space Stars. The first book in the series, My Truest Love, was written for LT3's Rocking Hard anthology, and it went out of print a few years ago. Therein lies the dilemma. If I wanted to renew Wings of the Stars, I needed to do something with My Truest Love. I spoke with LT3 and they have accepted My Truest Love again. I would like to have new covers made for both stories that reflect the fact that they're in a series together. I'm looking forward to seeing how it goes.
The last bit of news is that the voting for M/M Romance's Best books of 2018 closed. I have to wait until next weekend to learn how Ground of Insurrection did. There was a lot of competition, but I'm still hopeful. Thank you to everyone that took the time to vote.
I am home sick today. Sore throat, low grade fever, cough. Ugh. I keep waking up from a nap and wondering when I can take another nap. It sucks. Even if I had the energy to write, which I don't, I can't use my leave from work for writing purposes. Instead, I'm hoping to read a good book. Since I didn't have edits this past weekend, I got to read Mercenaries of the Stolen Moon by Megan Derr, which just came out. I enjoyed it so much I went and reread the rest of the series...again...and bought Mercenaries in print. Now I need something else to read in between my naps today. I've got an overstuffed bookshelf in my apartment and a bunch of ebooks on my computer, so I'll figure something out.
Here's some super wonderful good news: Ground of Insurrection has been nominated in the Fantasy category in M/M Romance's 2018 Members' Choice Awards on Goodreads! The last book I had nominated was Hadash Aviv back in 2013. Given I only have two books eligible for nomination this year, having even one of them chosen is amazing. Voting opens next month and I'll post all the links you'll need then.
I don't have any news to share about my upcoming books. If A Butterfly Don't Fly and The Coup and the Prince are still in process, I know that much, but I don't know anything else about them just yet. The Sentinel's Prophesy is also going to start the editing process sometime soon. Ground of Resurrection has been submitted, but I won't hear whether it's been accepted for a few more months.
As for writing, I've had a good week. Ge-Mi: Part Two is almost there! I've had to pause actually writing in order to organize and plan the final battle scene, but that's led to good progress. I am hoping to have it completed by the end of the year. Wounded Alpha, my story for LT3's Bound by Nothing call, has been sitting for long enough. I'm thinking if I have some energy tonight, I might start giving it a final edit. I've decided it would be better to get it done and submitted sooner, just in case I get drowned in edits again. The last thing I want is for the submission deadline to arrive while I'm busy with other things. This way it's one less thing on my plate.
For now, though, it's time for another nap.
The release dates for all of my books coming out in 2018 have been decided. The Coup and the Prince was pushed back, as I thought it would have to be, and I have the official date for Heartbeat:
I would say these dates are not going to be changed, but I'm still working on the second round of edits for Butterfly and am expecting to have to deal with the second round of edits for Coup fairly soon. If I can get the second round of edits for Butterfly back to LT3 within the next week or so, that story will be in good shape. Heartbeat, on the other hand, will only be getting a quick edit. It's a reprint, so it's already gone through the editing process once. The plan is to clean up anything we might have missed last time, which won't be a difficult lift. (I'm kind of looking forward to an easy round of edits, to be honest.)
LT3 accepted The Sentinel's Prophesy! The contract is signed, so in about nine months I'll start seeing edits and such. What this means for me (besides the fact that I'm excited to have the story accepted) is that for the first half of 2019 I won't have ANY edits at all to deal with. None! I'm going to have to take a mental health deep breath first, but once I'm centered again I will be able to devote all of my writing time to actually writing. With no edits with their due dates hanging over me, and no stress from having to take an axe to a story I've worked so hard on, I expect to be able to finally start making real progress on my to-do list. Ge-Mi: Part Two is at the top, but I also really want to get my fairy tales completed, and it's been far too long since I've played with Lumie and the rest of my Supernatural Consultants. It's a lot to look forward to, which is one of the main things pushing me through getting all the editing completed, and I can't wait to be able to get started.
I have so much news to share. Some of it's good news and some of it's bad news, and I'm really hoping you and LT3 will forgive me for the bad news. Let me get all of the bad out of the way first.
I am a very, very bad author. I struggled so much with the edits for The Coup and the Prince. It was ridiculous considering how short the story is, but for some reason those damned edits just wouldn't go. I finally got them back to LT3, but I was beyond late. There is no way Coup will be released on time and it's all my fault. I'll let you know what LT3 decides to do about it, but for the interim I will continue to wallow in misery for my incompetence.
The next bit of bad news is that the audio book for Supernatural Consultant: Volume Two will be delayed indefinitely. I know some of you had expressed interest in Volume Two, which is why I reached out to LT3 about it. Sales for Volume One just weren't high enough to justify putting Volume Two into audio. LT3 is still interested in doing it, but it's been pushed back to the bottom of the to-do list. The second that changes I'll let you all know.
The last bit of bad news is Paint, Guns, Money, & Love is out of print. It wasn't selling well and it wasn't my best work, so it was decided to let it go. I have a feeling it won't be missed, but I'm still sad it's gone.
And now, finally, on to the good news!
The response for Ground of Insurrection has been phenomenal. I haven't seen a single negative review! A few bits of constructive criticism, but overall everyone has really enjoyed it. Reading all those wonderful reviews really lifted my spirits when I needed it most, so thank you to everyone that read and reviewed.
The Coup and the Prince is available for pre-order at LT3 for a 15% discount. You can get your copy reserved today: https://lessthanthreepress.com/books...
I have been working on Ge-Mi. No, part two hasn't grown, but I finally started organizing book two. Each book in this series will be split into two parts and Di-Na, the second book in the series, not only has a name, but it has its two main characters. I hope you'll love Kay and Sierra as much as Taylor and Nevada. Now that I've gotten all of that figured out, I'm really hoping to return to finishing Ge-Mi: Part Two. Feel free to check out the summaries and such on my current projects page.
I have seen the first draft covers for The Coup and the Prince and for Heartbeat and they are perfect. I'm really looking forward to sharing the final versions with all of you, so check back for a cover reveal post soon!
All I have left on my to-do list this weekend are the edits for If A Butterfly Don't Fly. I put them off while I was figuring out Coup. I'm hoping because this is the second round, the edits will be easy. We'll see, but I'm going to start working on them as soon as I finish giving The Sentinel's Prophesy one last check. I am going to get Prophesy submitted to LT3 today.
And that's it for all my news. I'll keep you all appraised as I learn more and I'm hoping next time it will be all good news.
I had a conversation with LT3 about the release date for If A Butterfly Don't Fly and the decision was we ought to push it back. I expected this to happen once I saw the scale of the edits and LT3 came to the same conclusion. This was a mutual decision that takes a lot of pressure and stress off of both of us, and allows us to properly prepare Butterfly so we release the best possible product to our readers. Trying to force a July release date would not have been fair to you.
The reason I only glanced through Butterfly instead of delving right in is I am behind on the edits for The Coup and the Prince. My goal is to spend this entire weekend getting Coup completed. It's doable as long as I can stay focused. Wish me luck!
If I need to step away from edits for a moment, I might take a few hours to finally read through The Sentinel's Prophesy and get it formatted for submission. I think I was able to smooth out the transitions the last time I looked at it, so this time is a last check for anything that jumps out at me.
Plus, don't forget Ground of Insurrection comes out next week! You only have a few more days to get it for a 32% discount (LT3's having an amazing sale right now!). It should be up on Amazon soon too. I'm really excited for the start of this new series and I hope you'll enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it!
Given the number of questions (and quite a few demands) regarding when Ge-Mi: Part Two is coming out, I know many of you are anxious for the second half to be in your hands. My answer for the last few months was "I'm working on it", but progress has been painfully slow. That's finally changed. I wrote 6k words this month and have planned the next part out. The story is basically at the halfway point where all the set up is complete and now it's time for the drama to really begin. Drama isn't easy to write because of the complexities that go into it, but it keeps my interest better than set up. If I can keep the momentum going, I can really make a lot of progress in this story.
Last month I went through The Sentinel's Prophesy one last time to try to smooth out some of the bumpy bits and set the story aside. The plan was to pick it up mid-May--so as soon as I get a free moment--and give it one last thorough edit. I'll get it formatted for submission and then I'll see whether LT3 will accept it.
The problem with continuing work on Ge-Mi or Prophesy is that I got more edits and those take precedence. Instead of going for round two, it appears Ground of Insurrection went directly to copy edits. That makes sense, given most of the questions I had were simple ones that could be answered by any editor. I've started going through them and it's fairly straightforward. I've made a lot of progress so far. They're due at the end of this week, and I should have them completed on time. Ground of Insurrection is coming out really soon, so make sure you get your pre-order in before June 13th: https://lessthanthreepress.com/books...
I also received the first round of edits for The Coup and the Prince. I wrote the story to be short and sweet, but apparently I was a little too short and not quite enough sweet. There are four or five places where the editor recommended I add scenes and there are a couple of other significant changes I need to make. These edits are going to take time and a lot of work. Luckily there is still plenty of time before this story is slated to come out in September, but given I know the second round of edits for If A Butterfly Don't Fly will be coming my way very soon, there might still be a bit of a time crunch.
Speaking of Butterfly, it is now up for pre-order at LT3. You can get it for a 15% discount: https://lessthanthreepress.com/books... I have seen the first draft of the cover, which is lovely and I can't wait to share it with you. Butterfly is also up on Goodreads for those of you that like to mark books as "want to read".
In my last post I stated I had a great new scene planned out for Dragon Spy and I wanted to restart working on Ground of Resurrection. I literally had both manuscripts open on my computer and after I posted my blog, that scene in Dragon Spy began to take shape. I wrote a few hundred words of good stuff (Lumie is making a mess, which is a ton of fun to write) and I was excited about where it was taking me, and then oddly, I paused. I went into the depths of my computer and for some reason I dug out The Sentinel's Prophesy.
Longtime readers of my blog will remember a few years back (to 2014) I had a good idea for a side story in my Oracle series that I felt would give it the extra bit of world building the series was missing. That side story is The Sentinel's Prophesy, but despite my really wanting to write it, the story never really came together. It has been sitting on my computer, untouched, for over a year now. In the past week I have added over 10k words to the story and it is now complete! After over four years of working on this story (a story that shouldn't have taken me more than a few months to write), I have finally finished it. Of course, I do still need to reread it and give it a first edit. The section I wrote a while ago and the section I just finished are a bit separated, so I need to smooth that out too. Otherwise, I'm going to leave the story to sit for about a month before I pull it out for final editing and to get it ready to submit. Hopefully, LT3 will accept it.
What does this mean for the rest of the series? Well, the contract for the first book, The Oracle's Flame, was just renewed. I feel like that's a good sign that LT3 will be interested in also renewing The Oracle's Hatchling, book two, when it comes up for renewal in September. I am really hoping it will not take me another four years to write the final book in the series, The Oracle's Current, but I am very stuck on that story and am wondering if it might be better to completely scrap what I have and start over. Either way, Current will need a while yet before it starts chugging along again. Until then, I'm going to remain happy over finally getting Prophesy complete!
Passover kicked my butt more than I thought it would. During the week itself I was too busy to get any writing done and the week after I was so exhausted I needed every moment to recover. Then I had to drive home again, which killed any weekend writing time for this last week in April. Basically, I was successful at my goals for the first half of the month, but the latter two weeks were a wash. Here's how I did:
It's been about a year now since I put together a proper goals list that I knew I could keep to. My life has started to gain stability and my writing time has settled down to a proper schedule, so I would like to try setting these goals again.
Some considerations for April that I will have to keep in mind are 1) Passover, which will take away a few days from my writing time, and 2) Editing, since I'm expecting the copy edits for Dragon Adventure, the second round of edits for Justified, the first round of edits for Dragon Home, and all the edits for The Dragon's Hoard series and Short Stories.
With all that in mind, here are my goals for April:
If I can confine my writing to just those stories, I could very well be able to complete one of them and make a lot of progress on the rest.
A Little Fairy Dust
January 4, 2021
March 1, 2021
Mell Eight is an author writing with NSP. For more information about Mell and her writing, please visit her website: http://melleightfiction.