One 2021 goal down…

Back in 2020, I purchased a copy of Vellum and started re-issuing all my books. Most had no substantive changes, but this was an opportunity to clean up the back and front matter on some, add maps to some, change out covers, and basically try to make the format of each one look more professional.*

This morning I finally uploaded the last of them: Iron Shoes, The Dragon’s Child, and The Sparrow in Hiding.

One of the nice parts about self-pubbing these is that I can do this whenever I wish (although it is -very- time-consuming.)

But I’m glad that’s done, and I (currently) like all the new covers. I cleared up some typos, which is always nice, but somehow I fear that other typos will have crept in to replace them. Like vermin.

I’m still uncertain what I’ll do with all my old stock under the old covers. I’ve got them all for about $1 each at my Storenvy store, but… people still have to pay postage. Eventually I’ll have to figure out somewhere to donate some of them, I suppose, but that’s maybe a chore for after I get all the other stuff done.

Now I will return to the editing of Mary Quirk 2 and Beneath the Waves, but this week I need to get my Patreon post ready for Feb. 1, so that will take precedence. I’m also trying to get started on Princess, Empress, and Amazon again, although that’s also of lesser importance.

*FWIW, I have been told by a reader that if one already owns any of these re-issued books, but wants the newest version, they can talk to Amazon CS (in chat), an Amazon will send the updates through to that reader.

Soldiering on…

It’s been a few months since my last post, but I’m trying to get things under control here. We had a rocky December, including a death in my family, and that made for difficult times getting anything done. January was complicated by the sudden need for foundation work for our house, but we’ve only got one more related workman to come out and we’ll be done with that.

I do have plans to publish a couple of books this spring and summer. The final novella in the Golden City setting should be coming out in May (subject to change). This will be Beneath the Waves, formerly serialized here as O Submarino.

(More info if you scroll down to the very bottom of the Golden City page.)

I will also have the second book in the Mary Quirk series coming out this spring, although the date is still undecided (hoping for March.)

(More information about that book here!)

After these two, the remainder of the year will be dedicated to

a) Finishing up the fourth (and final) Palace of Dreams book: Twilight of Dreams. I hope to have this one out before Christmas, but Book 3 was exceedingly difficult for me to write, so I’m not going to make any promises.

b) Reissuing all my current books (basically cleaning up some typos and updating the front and back matter.) I have reissued all of the King’s Daughter series, the Books of The Horn, and all the Golden City books. That leaves a clean up job for Iron Shoes, The Dragon’s Child, and The Sparrow in Hiding.

c) Rough draft work for Mary Quirk and the Endless Summer.

If I can get all that done, I will be super happy!

Sale on The King’s Daughter novels…

Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve been uploading new cleaned-up versions of the first three books of The King’s Daughter and On Common Ground. In addition, the first three books have gone on sale:

The Amiestrin Gambit: now 99 cents

The Passing of Pawns: now $2.99

The Black Queen: now $2.99

And of course, Knight and Nightrider is now available here, only $4.99

And for those who are following Anna St. Vincent, Mary Quirk and the Secret of Umbrum Hall is now available as well.

Coming 9/15, The King’s Daughter: Book 4

Book 4 of The King’s Daughter will be available on September 15th!

Amazon/ Others

A country braces for war…

The former cadets of the war college of Amiestrin know their king isn’t just royal. He’s a Seer of profound talent and, quite possibly, a madman as well. But for years now, the king and the other Seers have been predicting war, and they’re the ones who will have to fight it.

Llelas Sevireiya has spent the past year preparing his home province for that war. When a young Seer shows up at his door with orders for him to take time out to seek out a wife, he travels to Perisen and brings one home, not one anyone expected.

Thomas Farrier has plans for his life, but the marshals seem determined to upend them. Now he must adapt to a political role helping refugees who are fleeing over the border into Jenear. That assignment takes him to Sandrine, the home of his friend, Llelas.

Ellis Dantreon serves as a member of the King’s Bodyguard, guarding her own father. When the king decides to visit the border, the only question he has for his daughter is whether she’s ready. Now she, Thomas, and Llelas must become what the Seers expect of them: the princess, the knight, and the nightrider.

Now Available!

The third book in the Palace of Dreams cycle is now available in ebook and paperback.

I’m hoping to have the fourth (and final) book out next summer, although life hasn’t been entirely cooperative here in the last year, so… please don’t be upset if I’m a little off.

And I hope you all enjoy it!

Check it out on Goodreads.

Read an Excerpt.

Almost there…

The third book (of four) in the Palace of Dreams cycle will be coming out August 13th. (Click here for preorder links.)

DreamsfromtheGrave_ebook

Mikael Lee has dreamed of death for a decade now. He shares the last moments of murder victims, usually ones he’s later fated to investigate. But one death has always eluded him: his father’s murder.

Now he’s dreaming his father’s murder again, an old and powerful dream that can drag him to the brink of death. This time, though, he has a witness who can help him find the truth: Shironne Anjir. She’s been dragged into Mikael’s dreams for years. As much as Mikael does, she wants this dream put to bed, the deaths in Mikael’s memories solved once and for all.

And more than that, Mikael wants to uncover his father’s greatest secret—the identity of a half-brother Mikael has never met.

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I honestly think this has been the hardest book I’ve ever written, and… I’m not even certain why. That does, however, offer an explanation for why it’s taken so long to get this one from the computer to the page.

Oddly, the main plot of this book was written back in 2004 or 2005, but because of various life incidents, publisher incidents, and changes made to the first book, it’s had to be totally rewritten.

I have already started on the fourth and final book in this sequence (Twilight of Dreams), and hope to have that out next year, although I have a lot of work coming out between the two.

And there is a possibility of a separate book about Sera… but right now I’m not committing to that.

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And I do have a book coming out later this year under the Anna St. Vincent name.

I am working on editing Knight and Nightrider, but I am not sure whether I’ll publish it this year or not. (Ideally, I’ll hold K&N and PEA until The White King is finished, but… that may be some time.)

industrial

Much of this slowness is related to family life issues. My in-laws have been living with us for most of June and July, and we’re having some renovation done to make it easier for them to live here, so that’s been eating away at my writing time. I’m hoping that life will return to normal eventually, but this year has been… a difficult one.

But here’s to getting a single book out this year!  Mejor que nada.

One Terrible Month

Well, I wanted to have so much more done in the month of June, but life intervened.

My in-laws spent most of the month living here in my house. My father-in-law had a health crisis that provoked 6 Emergency Room visits, 2 planned hospital visits, and two visits from Paramedics here at the house. My mother-in-law also had a planned surgery amid that, so… it was clear they couldn’t keep on top of all that alone.

Therefore, much of my time last month was diverted to in home care, and stress took away a lot of other time that I could have spent writing. Between this and the pandemic, I’m surprised I got much of anything done. (We’re in a state with rising hospitalization numbers, so all the above hospital visits were full of additional challenges.)

As a result, Dreams from the Grave didn’t get sent to the editor yet. In fact, I haven’t even gotten to my final edit pass, although the editor has set a slot side for me in August.

I did almost get my end-of-the month Patreon posts done, and I am still working on the edit of Mary Quirk. I’ve also started a series of blog posts over on my Dreamwidth about why writers quit publishing, which is a thing that’s been on my mind for a few months now.

Anyhow, pushing on, which is the best I can do with all the issues.

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Slow Progress

I want to apologize for not updating the various series lately. I’ve actually finished the first drafts of two novels over the last two months, and I’m currently working on editing those into shape.

The first (and one I’m currently editing) is the next book in the Palace of Dreams series: Dreams from the Grave, wherein Shironne and Mikael try to decipher what he is supposed to learn from his own father’s death, but the only tool he has to do so is his dreams.

I’m hoping to have this one off to the editor by the end of May, although I’m not quite on track. I must work faster!

DreamsfromtheGrave_ebook

The second book I finished (last month) is intended to be published under a pseudonym, and is rather different in texture from the above work. It’s been fun to work with this one, although who knows if it will sell?

Mary Quirk 1

This is a young adult novel (as one might guess from the title) and I’m still working on a marketing plan for it. I have been publishing chapters of the ROUGH DRAFT on Wattpad, though, if you’re curious.

(ROUGH DRAFT means that it still needs editing, just like the chapters that I post here. That’s also a tentative cover, along with a horrible horrible series name!)

Anyhow, I hope to get back to regular posts on the serials next month, although no one can be sure how things will pan out, then!

I hope everyone is staying safe and being cautious!

 

 

 

Working away… and the new map

I’m still working on getting The King’s Daughter Book 4 out, although I suspect it will hit in either late September or early October.  (Mary Quirk will be out 9/8

The fourth KD book (Knight and Nightrider) is a bit of an odd duck, mostly because the content of the first half and the back half are quite different. So the book is neatly cut into two parts under one cover, just to make that plain. 

And, since I’m going through with republishing all my self-done books (which will take months), I will be adding a map to all the King’s Daughter books: 

 

It’s not unusual for a writer to have a map in their book, and I did have an older one, done years ago (2005?) in Campaign Cartographer. This new one was done using my friend Photoshop, and I’m happy with it. It’s not perfect (and I always struggle with straight lines), but this should do for another 15 years.

And back to edits now…

Things an Author Doesn’t Actually Control

J. Kathleen Cheney

It’s interesting (and sometimes infuriating) to see some of the things that fans blame on authors. Authors who are traditionally published often have little control over their published properties. That’s simply part of the way that the business runs.

But authors still take heat for some of these things. Recently an author had a book released, and for some reason, Amazon didn’t release the ebook on time.

And fans sent hate mail to the author.

Can you really call those fans?

So I’m going to put down here a list of Things that Traditionally Published Authors Generally Don’t Control.*

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The Release Date

Yes, we don’t have much say over when our next book is coming out. Our publisher sets up a scheduled date and everyone races toward getting things done on time, but if we miss a crucial part in the publication process (say, for example, edits just take too…

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