There's a lot on my to-do list (I feel like there's always a lot on my to-do list), but this week I've found myself focusing on two specific items. The first is, of course, the edits for If A Butterfly Don't Fly. I'm making progress, but as usual it's slow going. The editor has again requested that I rewrite large portions of the story. I understand why, but a) it's painful to do, and b) it's ridiculously time consuming. Still, I want to try to get it done quickly so I can really start digging into the second thing I've been working on this week.
Dragon Spy, the seventh book in my Supernatural Consultant series, has been languishing for far too long and I've finally taken the time to get some work done on it. Chapter One is from Nickel's perspective, which is always a bit more serious, but Chapter Two has decided it wants to be from Lumie's perspective instead. There's a bit more levity when Lumie is around and causing problems. I can't say it's more fun to write Lumie instead of Nickel, but it's easier to find the right flow. This means I can finally start figuring out the second half of the blurb for Dragon Spy. It also means that I'm planning for a future book to be in Platinum and Goldie's perspectives. Admittedly, the main characters of that future book will depend on who is speaking to me at the moment, but I'm having fun planning ahead.
The two additional books on my radar right now are still Ge-Mi: Part Two and Ground of Resurrection. Part Two is at the halfway point and I'm having a bit of trouble getting it over that hump and into the start of the build up for the final battle scene. I'm hoping to take some time to refocus the plot and get it moving again. Resurrection, on the other hand, is just waiting for me to have time to return to working on it. I only need to write about 5k more words and the story will be complete, which is basically the last battle and the romantic conclusion. When I finally have some free time to devote to writing, I'm hoping to get Resurrection completed.
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.
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!
It only took me an extra three weeks, but the edits for If A Butterfly Don't Fly are finally back with LT3. They need to go back to the editor for another round, but I think (I hope) I was able to make a lot of progress this time around. We'll see how I did when I get round two in a month or so. Right now I'm going to take a deep breath and try to let the stress of overdue edits finally fall away.
Of course, now that those edits are done for the moment, I'm sure the second round for Ground of Insurrection will arrive. Insurrection is starting to head quickly towards release day, and getting the edits complete is a big step towards making sure June 13th happens. I'm not expecting anything too crazy for this second round, so it'll hopefully go quickly. Don't forget, for the rest of April LT3 is having a huge birthday sale and you can pre-order Insurrection for 40% off: https://lessthanthreepress.com...
With editing done for the time being, I can finally turn to writing again. There are so many stories to work on, but right now my muse has the next scene planned for Dragon Spy, book seven in my Supernatural Consultant series. Lumie decided he needed to come say hello and I have a hard time saying no to Lumie. It should be fun to write and I'm hoping that will also help me get further along with planning out this story. It's been stalled for a while because I'm not entirely certain how I want to organize it all. I also want to get back to finishing Ground of Resurrection, but I've lost the momentum I had a few months ago. Basically, whichever story grabs my attention and keeps moving forward is the one I'll be working on.
When I'm writing a book, a lot of the time the ideas for the sequel start popping up. I usually shelve those ideas until the current book is complete, and then pull them back out to start work on the sequel. Except, by that point those new ideas are dusty and sometimes difficult to work with because of the amount of time they've been sitting (which has sometimes been years). That was the case for Ground of Resurrection, the second book in my Wizard Wars series. It took me years to write book one, Ground of Insurrection, and all the ideas and plans for book two got warped and messed up. I've scrapped and restarted the first 1k words in Resurrection at least three times, just trying to get the pieces I shelved to work with what actually wanted to go onto paper. The story was stuck around 1k for a few months, but then I received the first round of edits for Insurrection.
Somehow, reading through Insurrection reminded me of those original, shelved ideas, and reordered them until they finally started to come together in a story that makes sense. Writing Resurrection suddenly became a process of getting the words onto paper fast enough before my brain moved on to the next scene. Resurrection has just passed the 10k words mark. (I've also started shelving ideas for a potential third book in the series that will likely be called Ground of Defection.) 10k words is the halfway point for the books in this series, which are all only about 20k in total, and I know the basic layout of the rest of the story. It's just a matter of finding the time to write it all down, but I'm really hoping Resurrection will be completed soon.
On another note, thanks to all your advice from my last posting I have decided to go with Dragon Spy as the title for book seven in my Supernatural Consultant series. I hope regular readers of my blog will understand that I am recycling a previously scrapped title. I have also come up with the first paragraph of the working summary for Spy, which you can read HERE. I'll be able to add the second paragraph and smooth out the first paragraph once I've fleshed out the story a bit more, but at least now you can get the basic gist of what I'm going for in this story. I haven't made a decision on what to do about the title for my coliseum story, but I'll let you all know what I eventually decide.
I have been working on my untitled coliseum story off and on for about a year now. It's purely fantasy with a type of dragon character I haven't utilized before. Writing it has been fun even though it hasn't been smooth sailing. I am finally approaching the climax of the story where the hero must fight the bad guy and I realized I needed to come up with a title. The problem is that the only potential titles I could think of were 'Dragon Sands' or 'Dragon Moons'. Both would fit with the story and I'm leaning towards the former, however I realized that the title is far too similar to that of my Supernatural Consultant series. Every single one of those titles are two words and start with 'Dragon'. The last thing I want is for someone to spend money on what they think is the next Supernatural Consultant book, only to be greeted with a vast desert and a cave full of dragon eggs instead. I don't know what to do. Should I use 'Dragon Sands' anyway? I could use your advice, so please let me know what you think!
Speaking of Supernatural Consultant, despite not being on the short list I mentioned in my last post, book seven is the story I started working on. I've added about .5k words, which was enough to set the next scene and build some drama for what's coming next. Which brings me to my conundrum about this story as well. I originally settled on 'Dragon Trick' for the tentative title because it fit with the rough outline in my head. As the story continues to expand on paper, I'm realizing that 'Trick' is not the right fit after all. In fact, I think I might be leaning towards resurrecting 'Spy', which was scrapped as the title for book six (Dragon Lesson). Do you think if I started calling book seven 'Dragon Spy' I would confuse readers who associate that title with Dragon Lesson?
Three day weekends with very few plans are a wonderful thing when you've got edits that need to get done. I spent just about every free moment this past long weekend editing Ground of Insurrection and was able to finish it early. I've just sent it back to LT3. They do need another round with the editor, but I don't foresee any serious difficulties arising. Additional news about potential release dates, covers, and everything else will hopefully be forthcoming at the end of the month. I'll keep everyone in the loop as I learn more.
I was checking the links on my website this past weekend and I realized the Satisfaction Guaranteed Anthology is no longer. According to my records it went out of print this past September. I totally missed this fact. Heartbeat, my story from the anthology, is actually the prequel to my Trickster's Eye series. I gave it a read-through, fixed a few small issues, and have resubmitted it to LT3. I hope they will accept the story a second time.
I don't know how long I'll have until the next round of edits appears, but I'm hoping to get some writing done in the interim. I have three stories open on my computer right now: Ge-Mi: Part Two, Ground of Resurrection, and my untitled Coliseum Story. I have plans for what happens next in all three and all three are clamoring for me to write them. Whichever one screams loudest at me will win, but any writing at all is good progress. I'll be sure to let you know how it goes.
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!
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.
October 3, 2018
If A Butterfly Don't Fly
November 14, 2018
The Coup and the Prince
December 12, 2018
Mell Eight is an author writing with LT3. For more information about Mell and her writing, please visit her website: http://melleightfiction.