Story Day!

Dec. 1st, 2015 09:00 am
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (nocturnall)
I am very pleased to report that Nocturnall, the coda to my River of Souls trilogy, is now officially released. It's available on Amazon, Smashwords, and will be on Barnes & Noble as soon as the hamsters powering their computers wake up Barnes & Noble.

Speaking of venues other than Amazon, I've also released The Ghost Dragon's Daughter on Smashwords and B&N.

I'm delighted with how both stories turned out, and I'm doubly pleased to share them with the rest of the world.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (book fin)
...but the end of several projects.

The Ghost Dragon's Daughter was released last week. E-book only for now, and for now, only on Amazon because I've submitted the story to Amazon's Kindles Singles program as an experiment. If that doesn't work out, I'll publish to all the rest of the usual places. I might even release a print edition, but that comes much, much later.

Speaking of print, I mailed out the print copies of Nocturnall to my Kickstarter supporters today (Monday). The ebook itself went out to them last weekend. I still have three critiques to deliver, but the really hard part is done and over.

I also completed the Writing the Other class this weekend. Amazing lectures, useful and thought-provoking homework, lots of links and reading material. I highly recommend it. (Even if the timed in-class writing exercises made me cry.)

So now what?

First of all, there's the follow-up workshop for Writing the Other. We get several weeks to apply what we've learned to a story or several novel chapters, then our teachers and classmates critique what we've done. The results of that will likely occupy me the rest of the year, if not longer.

After that, who knows?
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (squee!)
Guys! Guys! Guess what today is!!

(Okay, the title of this post probably gave things away. *g)

In case you haven't read my posts and tweets from the past couples weeks, today is Book Day for the paperback edition of Allegiance, the third novel in my River of Souls series. The series itself isn't over, but this is the last book for Ilse and Raul in this lifetime.

To celebrate this milestone, I wrote a coda story, then ran a Kickstarter to commission artwork for the cover and interior. It was a lot of work, but I am sooooo very happy with the results. The e-book went out to my supporters over the weekend, and the print copies just arrived here. Once I check them over, I shall sign and mail those out.

But this wasn't enough, I decided. I wanted to do something for the day itself. So....

I've spent the last few weeks on a different story, The Ghost Dragon's Daughter, which is set in the same world as Fox & Phoenix, but with an entirely different set of characters. This is my geek girl story, about Jun, Mei, and Lili, and their senior year project, which they call the monstrosity machine. To quote from Delia Sherman's shiny blurb:

"There's magic and mathematics, spirit animals and science, and an intelligent young girl who is finding her path to university and love both longer and rockier than she’d expected."

So one novel, two stories. Both Allegiance and The Ghost Dragon's Daughter are available for purchase even as you read this. Nocturnall comes out in December, but you can pre-order it now.







beth_bernobich: alice (alice)
...so I can send two copies to work, assign chores and errands to a third, and have at least one copy to handle the administrative overhead and general flailing that comes along with publishing. The real me would get to have fun. (That includes the writing itself, of course.)

I don't have a cloning device, alas, but I do the best I can. So, things accomplished since I last posted. The latest editing pass for The Ghost Dragon's Daughter. The acknowledgments, cover design, and interior design for Nocturnall. I'm also talking to an artist for cover art for The Ghost Dragon's Daughter.

And at long last, I have resumed edits for The Edge of the Empire. One chapter reworked, and a few pages of the next. Twenty more to go.
beth_bernobich: alice (alice)
The final version of Nocturnall's cover art arrived this weekend, and it is omg scrumptious perfect. As soon as I have the completed cover design, I will share.

Meanwhile, I have finished entering the proofreading changes for my geek girl story. On the one hand, the story is now too long for most markets. On the other hand, I have the option of publishing the story myself, which means I can release it a couple weeks before Nocturnall.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (cat on a wire)
Nocturnall Kickstarter: Things are going very well with this project. The cover artist and I worked through a couple rounds with rough sketches until we had the right look for both the story and the series. She then sent me a detailed drawing that had me dizzy with delight. We've now moved on to the color sketches. I've picked a color scheme from the three she sent me. The next step is the final version.

Current Novel: Out on submission. *fingers crossed*

Geek Girl Story: I've read and marked up the document for the next round of edits. The story grew quite a bit in the last round, and I suspect it will grow a bit more.

Edge of the Empire: Once I finish the GG story, I want to dive back into revisions for this novel. With the change in my dayjob, I no longer have any writing time in the morning, but I do have more time after work, so I want to experiment with short sessions in the evening.
beth_bernobich: Crab (Crab)
This past week was a busy one. I finished up in fine style at the old job, which pleases me. I have (almost) a week before the new one starts, so it's time to play catch up. A bit more gardening. Miscellaneous chores. Writing summaries for possible sequels to Current Novel. Finishing the latest round of edits for my geek girls story. Petting the cats.

misc...

Jun. 15th, 2015 08:30 am
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (umbrella mushrooms)
Last week at the old job. I've finished a number of tasks far ahead of schedule, so I'm using these last few days to tackle some issues that we've always wanted to address.

Latest round of sketches from the cover artist have arrived. In the next day or two, I need to sit down with my cover designer and get his input. Guys, this is going to be such a great cover.

Agent loves the latest version of Not!Sherlock. She has proposed a short list of publishers to me, and the manuscript will go out Real Soon Now. *cue excitement*

And to scratch my writing itch, I am slowly working through my geek girl story. When I first wrote it, I thought it was the best thing ever. I still love the story all to pieces, but I know I can make the execution better.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (book fin)
...and off to my agent.

Just in time for me to dive back into Nocturnall. The artist and I are now exchanging emails about the concept sketches she sent me. (I LOVE them.)

I am also poking at my geek girl story. Plans are to make another editing pass before I send it out again. This will scratch my writing itch while still being low-key. Just what I need after the intensity of Not!Sherlock.

Oh, and I am now back to full-time work as well. More details about that later.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (cat on a wire)
Nocturnall Kickstarter: E-book gift codes all sent. Thank-you tweets all sent. Spreadsheet updated. I've been researching printers for the limited print run, and so far the front runners are Lightning Source and Createspace. LS has a reputation for somewhat higher quality, but Createspace is somewhat less expensive and appreciably easier to work with, according to all my sources.

Edge of the Empire: On the back burner for now. See next item.

Not!Sherlock: I need to make another editing pass to address two minor issues and one medium-sized issue that my agent pointed out. I had hoped to finish this pass by today, but a few other obligations popped up last week. Once the edits are in place, I want to read through the whole thing one more time to make sure they work with the rest of the story.

And at home, my flowerbeds need some attention—we're still rehabilitating them from their years of neglect before we bought the house—but like the pirate novel, they are on the backburner until Not!Sherlock goes out on submission. Once that happens, I shall descend upon the local garden center with visions of annuals and perennials dancing in my head.
beth_bernobich: petal twigs (petal twigs)
It's been a busy, productive week.

I've started to send out rewards for my Nocturnall Kickstarter—gift codes for the trilogy e-books, the signed hardcovers, and lots and lots of thank-you tweets. I've also set up a giant spreadsheet to keep track of expenses and rewards and such.

I also had a long talk with my agent, who had just finished reading Not!Sherlock that morning. She is even more excited about the book than I am, if that's possible. She did have a couple suggestions, which I agreed with, mostly minor things, so while she researches submission strategy, I will make these tweaks to the manuscript. Our goal is to get the book out on submission by early June.

There are also a few interesting developments in the works, outside the world of writing, which I'll share once they get further along.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (book fin)
In a burst of editing energy, I ripped through the last 50 pages of Current Novel. The second draft is done and out to readers.

*pause for writer victory dance*

I finished just in time, too, because my Kickstarter for Nocturnall launches on Thursday. I'll have a more detailed post once the campaign goes live, but for now, let me just say there will be all kinds of rewards for pledges, including an e-bundle of the River of Souls trilogy, a limited print edition of Nocturnall, and writer's specials. And of course, everyone gets a thank-you tweet with a pic of Fig or Octavia:



Oh, wait. Wrong cat. Here they are:



(That's Octavia on the left, Fig on the right.)
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (mad scribe)
This last section for Current Novel is 70 pages long. I finished reading and marking up the pages and was delighted that 15 pages only needed a couple typos fixed. I was less delighted (but not surprised) to confirm that the middle section needs serious editing. Plot details need to be wrenched into shape, and the prose needs more emotional and sensory layers.

So far, I've edited 19 pages, with a net gain of two pages. (Lots of cuts, but lots more additions.) The details are falling into place, the emotions are bubbling to the surface, and I continue to be stupidly happy about the book.

In other news, I finished my Kickstarter video and with some excellent feedback from friends, I've tweaked and project description and rewards. I'm now aiming to launch on March 19th.
beth_bernobich: Crab (Crab)
...writing and editing. I made my first reading pass through the new chapters for Current Novel, but I won't start revisions until next weekend. This is the part I hate the most. Well, not hate, but I find it extremely frustrating. I want to dive into the story again, but I need this small break to create distance between me and the text. Because right now, I am just stupidly in love with the book. It needs editing—yea, gods, it needs editing—but these characters and this story? They get me excited all over again.

Luckily I have this Kickstarter project to keep me busy. I have the project info filled out, the reward levels set, a logo, and a script and storyboard for the video.

Here's the logo my husband created for me:

logo-small
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (cat on a wire)
Way back in 2007, I landed my first novel sale—a three book contract to Tor Books for Passion Play and two sequels. Passion Play came out in October 2010 and, to my eternal delight, won the RT Reviewers' Choice Award for Best Epic Fantasy. Queen's Hunt and Allegiance followed in 2012 and 2013, with lots of shiny reviews.

After I finished the initial draft of Allegiance, back in 2012, I wrote what I call my coda story. Nocturnall takes place 35 years after the end of the trilogy, with a much older Ilse and Raul. My editor loved it, and suggested we include Nocturnall as an epilogue to Allegiance. I felt that would muddy the ending of the book. Better to publish the story later, as a stand-alone.

Well, later has arrived. This October, the paperback edition of Allegiance will be released. My plans are to self-publish Nocturnall as an e-single in December. This will be my celebration of the trilogy and my good-bye to Ilse and Raul. I want to make it a good one, so I want to give the story the professional treatment, including custom artwork. (Raul! On the cover with Ilse! At last!)

The professional treatment costs money, of course, so to raise funds, I will be running a Kickstarter campaign. There will be rewards, including thank-you tweets with cat pics of Octavia and Fig. There will be a limited edition print version of the story. And signed copies of the books. And more.

The estimated launch date for the campaign is March 12th. I'll post more details as they come up.

update

Aug. 31st, 2014 09:04 am
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (blue woman)
allegiance... latest news says the paperback version will appear next october.

coda story.... might appear in that same paperback. or not. but there are possibilities under discussion. one concern i have about adding it to the paperback is that it then won't be freely available to those who already bought the e-book or hardcover.

geek girl story.... alas, the very shiny anthology that bought this story got shelved. sooooo, story is currently in a slushpile, awaiting its turn.

edge of the empire... revising because i need to. i first wrote this novel seven years ago. it sold four years ago. i'm a better writer now and i think i can bring the story up a notch or three.

the time roads... six weeks to book day! i have guest blogs posts scheduled for the magical words blog. tynga's reviews will interview me during their paranorm'all hallows eve celebration, plus hold a giveaway for the time roads.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (japanese paper)
...was a week where I made almost no progress on Current Novel. But! I made a polishing pass on one short story, and I finished another round of revisions on my River of Souls coda story. Story #1 is now sitting in a slush pile, waiting its turn. The coda story...I don't know yet. I have to read it through one more time to see how I feel.

Meanwhile, reviews for The Time Roads have started to appear. Publishers Weekly did not care for the book. Skiffy and Fanty, however, did. Other reviews have been just as polarized. I suspect this will be a book that you either love or hate.

And about Current Novel. I currently have nine chapters written, for about 28K words. This week promises to be another hectic one at the dayjob, so I've set myself a smaller goal. Go through my notes for the next two chapters. Tweak them a bit if necessary. Set up my files for next weekend when I can dive into the prose itself.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (blue woman)
Still no sign of copyedits for THE TIME ROADS. I've been told that, once they get scheduled, I'll hear when to expect them.

Progress on Current Novel is agonizingly slow. Weekdays are consumed by the dayjob. Weekends are for writing, but other activities and writing obligations eat into that time. However, the central mystery is taking shape rather nicely in my brain, if not on paper. My goal is to finish the synopsis by early April, or if copyedits for THE TIME ROADS show up before then, by early May.

Alas, my Nocturnall story, which I call my coda to Ilse and Raul's trilogy, is currently in limbo. The editor loves it, but thinks it's too soon for the story to appear. I'm thinking I should write a couple more Ilse/Raul stories and publish them along with Nocturnall as a small collection. Once I finish my chapters and synopsis, I'll spend some time story noodling.

Dayjob continues to be absorbing (good) and frustrating (mostly because of our feckless newbie).

What with the snow and the cold weather, the cats are ready to destroy each other, or my new rug. Spring can't come soon enough.

But! We are planning a vacation in London, in early October, with a possible side trip to Bath. Tickets are bought, apartment rented. I'm excited.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (Rose Fractal)
2013 was an interesting year, in both the good sense and the interesting one.

Starting off the with good...

Queen's Hunt made the 2012 Locus Recommended Reading List. The NPR Books Tumblr gave a lovely shout-out to Thief of War, which was also selected for Some of the Best from Tor.com, 2013. Reviews for Allegiance overall were quite good, and I am delighted the conclusion to the trilogy left readers satisfied. I also participated in John Scalzi's Big Idea series, SF Mind Meld, Mary Robinette Kowal's My Favorite Bit, and 3 Good Things, and Liz Bourke interviewed me for her Sleeps With Monsters column on Tor.com.

The interesting part included a number of changes in publication schedule. The Time Roads is coming out much earlier than previously expected, which made for some exciting deadlines. Edge of the Empire and the rest of the River of Souls series are on hold for now. And the Firebirds #4 anthology, with my story The Ghost Dragon's Daughter, has been delayed to 2015.

All these delays mean I'm no longer under a crushing deadline. Which is both a relief and a little unnerving. I've decided to treat this an an opportunity and make this year the year I write for fun. Of course I want to sell more books to my publisher, but I also want to satisfy my own itches. My project list for the next year is, therefore, a mix of old and new.

So. To summarize last year, and give a peek into the next...

2013 Publications

Queen's Hunt, River of Souls #2, paperback reprint
Allegiance, River of Souls #3, hardcover
Thief of War, a River of Souls novella
The Science of Magic, flash fiction for Tor.com's Writing Prompts feature

2014 Publications

Allegiance, River of Souls #3, paperback reprint (rescheduled to July 2015 in tradepaperback)
The Time Roads, alternate history with mathematics and time travel, hardcover

2014 Projects

Nocturnall, a short story set 35 years after Allegiance (written in 2012, in rewrites)
Edge of the Empire, a prequel to the River of Souls trilogy (written in 2007, needs revision)
In The Presence of Her Enemies, Valara's return to Morennioù, (a draft exists, but it needs a complete rewrite)
St. Brendan's Isle, my Not-Mansfield-Park novel, with magic and polyamory

These projects might change depending on what happens through the year, but at the least, I will get the short story out to markets, and a proposal package for St. Brendan's Isle to my agent. From there, we'll see what happens.
beth_bernobich: red mushroom (collage)
I'm in between publishing deadlines at the moment, which leaves me both relieved and a bit disoriented. But I can tell my writing brain has recovered from the push to finish THE TIME ROADS, because all kinds of story ideas and images have been popping into head. Oh, but which one? Which one to choose?

A mix of three, I think.

One is a short story I call my coda to the River of Souls trilogy, which takes place thirty-five years after ALLEGIANCE. A draft is done and currently with a couple kind and generous readers.

One is EDGE OF THE EMPIRE. I wrote this novel back in 2007 and it shows. I want to revise the whole thing thoroughly—push the characters harder, follow through on consequences, get rid of the nice.

One is my Not-Mansfield-Park novel, which I'm tentatively calling St. Brendan's Isle. My plan is to write the first three chapters and a synopsis and see where to go from there. (The synopsis exists, but it's already out of date.)

And if I end up having more time, I also want to write the first three chapters to IN THE PRESENCE OF HER ENEMIES, which is the story of what happens after Valara returns to Morennioù.

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