Tomorrow will see the trade paperback release of A Plunder of Souls, the third book in my Thieftaker Chronicles (written under the D.B. Jackson pseudonym). For those of you who read that and feel as though you’re caught in a time-warp, yes, I understand. The hardcover edition of the book came out sixteen months ago. The FOURTH Thieftaker book, Dead Man’s Reach came out this past summer. So why would the trade paper of A Plunder of Souls come out now? It’s a good question, and all I can say is that this is a strange business.
Here’s the thing, though: Currently Tor Books has no plans to come out with a paperback version of Dead Man’s Reach — not in mass market (the small format), not in trade. The only way we’re going to convince them to change their minds is through sales of the paperback of A Plunder of Souls. If you have been a fan of the series, but have not yet read that third volume, this would be a great time to pick up a copy. If you have read it already in hardcover, thank you so much. Maybe you have a friend or a relative, someone you think would enjoy the series — the holidays are coming up and books make great gifts. You get the point. I’m asking for help here. I want the series to go on, but for that to happen, the publisher has to believe that the books are going to sell well enough to justify more volumes. And we need to start proving that to them right now.
A few weeks ago, around the time of the release of Dead Man’s Reach, I broke down the opening paragraphs of that fourth Thieftaker novel, to give you some sense of what I was trying to accomplish on the first page of the book. It was a fairly standard start — effective and, I think, nicely written — but not all that different from past Thieftaker openings.
I’d like to do something similar today with the first few paragraphs of His Father’s Eyes, as a way of contrasting this opening with that other. You’ll see immediately that the first page of this book is very different. The opening is the least conventional of any I’ve ever written. In fact, it breaks many of the rules I usually encourage aspiring writers to follow.
The 2015 Summer-of-Two-Releases Virtual Tour returns to Magical Words for another post about openings. In this one, I break down the opening lines of His Father’s Eyes, the second book in my Case Files of Justis Fearsson series, which just came out last week. You can find the post here. Enjoy!
I discovered worlds there. As a kid, I was fascinated by nature and the Apollo moon missions, and so I took out every book I could find on birds and mammals, rockets and space. Thanks to the librarian — I’ve forgotten her name, but I remember that she learned mine right away, and welcomed me every time I walked through the doors to the Children’s Room — I was introduced to the charming stories of Sterling North, and found countless books about baseball (another of my passions).
After a brief break, the 2015 Summer-of-Two-Releases Virtual Tour resumes today with a post over at the Word Nerds Review site. Bethany and Stacie, who run the site, are both strong advocates for public libraries, and they asked me to write about what libraries have meant to me. It was an easy and joyful piece to write. You can find the post here.
As writers we should be deliberate in choosing the proper voice for each story. We shouldn’t choose third person simply because the market might prefer it, as once it did, nor should we automatically gravitate toward first person just because that voice is in vogue right now. Rather, we need to consider several factors in choosing the right POV voice and, for that matter, the correct point of view character.
Today’s installments of the 2015 Summer-of-Two-Releases Virtual Tour take me to the blogs of two dear friends.
Lucienne Diver is not only a wonderful writer, she is also a fantastic agent, and I should know, because she has represented me for about fifteen years now. I am at her blog today with a post about point of view, and its uses as a narrative tool. Using the examples of Dead Man’s Reach, the fourth Thieftaker novel, which came out a couple of weeks ago, and His Father’s Eyes, the second volume in the Case Files of Justis Fearsson, I discuss how I choose the correct voice for a novel. You can read the post here; I hope you find it helpful.
Brandy Schillace, author, academic, blogger, reviewer, friend extraordinaire, has been kind enough to host me again on her Fiction Reboot. Today, I answer questions about the Thieftaker books, writing, history, and magic. You can find the interview here.
Surely there is room in this genre for quiet stories and loud ones, for the old-fashioned and the new-and-weird, for space opera and epic fantasy, for military SF and urban fantasy, for writers of all races, religions, sexual orientations, and gender identities. If you don’t want to read all of these stories, if you don’t want to follow all of these writers, you don’t have to. No one is forcing anyone to do anything.
But it is one thing to choose. It is something else entirely to dismiss. It is time that we as a community recognize the difference.
The day after the release of His Father’s Eyes, book II in the Case Files of Justis Fearsson, I continue the 2015 Summer-of-Two-Releases Virtual Tour with a couple of online appearances. The first, excerpted above, resumes the conversation on genre and community that I began two weeks ago at SFSignal. This new installment can be found here.
And later this afternoon, I will be back at Bitten By Books for a launch party celebrating yesterday’s release. We are giving away a $40.00 gift card to some lucky reader, and right now you can increase your chances of winning by RSVPing for the event here.
Choosing three books that changed my life, even if it’s just for the purposes of a blog tour, is a little like choosing “Three Meals That Helped me Grow Big and Strong.” Sort of. Actually, no one would ever accuse of me of being either big or strong. But you get the idea.
To be clear, I’m not so much talking about books-with-mermaids, but rather I am talking with mermaids about books. In a manner of speaking. Today, on the 2015 Summer-of-Two-Releases Virtual Tour, I visit the Mermaids and Friends site, hosted by, among others, my dear friend Alethea Kontis. As you might gather from the excerpt above, my post is about three books that changed my life, and the choices might surprise you. You can find the post here.
“We are, in many respects, the most egotistical people in the world. I mean it; it takes some serious sense of self to be able to say, “I just made up a story, and it’s so fucking good that you should pony up some money to read it. Not only that, but it’s around 500 pages long, but that’s okay, because reading it is the best use of your time I can think of.” Wow. That takes serious nerve. And I should know, because I’ve done it, like, eighteen times.
And yet for all that ego demanded by our profession, we writers are remarkably fragile creatures, subject to the dreaded “impostor syndrome,” and other maladies of mind and spirit.”
That’s an excerpt from today’s post on the 2015 Summer-of-Two-Releases Virtual Tour. I’m back at Magical Words today, talking about the vicissitudes of the writing life. Sure, I’m still promoting Dead Man’s Reach and His Father’s Eyes. But also looking beyond these releases to the next project, whatever that may be. Check out the post here. And enjoy!
Interested in seeing how characters might wreak their revenge on the writer who creates them? Then have I got a post for you! The 2015 Summer-of-Two-Releases Virtual Tour makes several stops today, including one at the SciFiChick.com, where I interview Ethan Kaille and Justis Fearsson, the lead characters from the Thieftaker Chronicles and The Case Files of Justis Fearsson. The two of them make it clear to me that they’re not entirely satisfied with how I’ve been running their lives. You can find the post here.
The second post, which was originally supposed to go up yesterday (things don’t always go as they’re supposed to on these virtual tours) can be found at All Things Urban Fantasy. It describes the political transformation of Ethan Kaille through the books of the Thieftaker Chronicles. Ethan started as a Loyalist, an opponent of Samuel Adams and the Sons of Liberty, something that bothered some of my readers. But his political evolution is a central theme in the series. You can read more about it here.
I am also at the blog of my friend and fellow writer, Bradley Beaulieu. Brad, the author of Twelves Kings in Sharakhai and The Winds of Khalokovo, is a terrific writer in his own right, and has been kind enough to interview for the blog tour. You can find the interview here.
Finally, my friend Karen Miller, a wonderful writer and former bookstore owner, who I first met when I lived in Australia, hosts me for an interview on her blog. You can find the Q&A here.
The 2015 Summer-of-Two-Releases Virtual Tour starts back up again today much the way it finished last week. I have two posts going live this morning. The first is at ISmellSheep.com, and it includes a giveaway of a signed hardcover edition of Dead Man’s Reach, the fourth novel in my Thieftaker Chronicles. The post begins as a serious essay, but deteriorates quickly when I am interrupted by none other than Sephira Pryce, Ethan Kaille’s lovely nemesis in the Thieftaker novels. Read the post here.
The second post is up at Literary Escapism. This post (which I complete without interruption) is called “The Geek in Me,” and it is all about my inner geek and how my two releases this summer, Dead Man’s Reach and His Father’s Eyes, the second volume in The Case Files of Justis Fearsson, feed my geeky passions. You can find the post here.
I hope you enjoy them both, and good luck in the giveaway!
The 2015 Summer-of-Two-Releases Virtual Tour winds up a busy week with appearances at the blogs of two of my writing friends. A.M. Dellamonica, author of Blue Magic, Indigo Springs, and Child of a Hidden Sea, interviews me about Dead Man’s Reach, His Father’s Eyes, and the challenges of writing under two names in two series for two publishers. You can find the interview here.
And Harry Connolly, author of Child of Fire and The Way Into Chaos, is hosting me for a post about the ways in which we writers define success. That’s a more complicated issue than some might imagine, in an industry that imposes its own definitions of what it means to succeed or fail. You can read the post here.
I hope you enjoy both the interview and the post, and I wish you all a wonderful weekend.