Yeah, it's been quite a while since I wrote a blog entry. It's not because I've stopped writing either—believe me, I have been very busy at the keyboard. My time continues to be impacted by babysitting the small fry grandchildren: Zack who is a year and a half old, and Terralyn is now 4 months. I commute to their house 4 days a week, and my day starts at 5:30 AM here, and ends sometime in the late afternoon/early evening when I get home. By then, I desperately need a nap. My evenings are abbreviated, with an early bedtime.
But I still write.
Currently I am working on two projects for next year, filling out an anthology for my Pro Se Press imprint, HANSEN'S WAY, and working on the second novel in my Jezebel Johnston pirate series for Airship 27. The first JJ pirate tale, titled JEZEBEL JOHNSTON—DEVIL'S HANDMAID is supposed to be out later this year. I've seen proposed cover art, and another artist whose work I also admire has been lined up for what might be 9 interior illustrations. This book is going to be awesome!
The second JJ is tentatively titled JEZEBEL JOHNSTON—QUEEN OF ANARCHY. The books are titled for the main character and whatever ship she serves on. I'm approaching 6000 words into this one now, and just ended the first chapter (there is a prologue). That's close to a 10th of it written in five sessions. Yes, it is coming far more easily this time. I still need to do regular research, because this is a historically based series. The characters are primarily inventions of my imagination, but the backdrop is based on the 1650s colonial Caribbean and the European political machinations that drove economies in that hotly contested area, and the buccaneers who plied their trade on the seas. I've had somewhat of a crash course in sailing ship technology for that era. There's so much to learn! It's fun, fascinating, and frustrating all at once. While I'm still learning the sails and how to set them for certain situations, terms like capstan, beakhead, hawse, slow match, scuppers, cathead, careening, orlop deck, and marlinspike all conjure up visual cues. Those my friends, are the kinds of details that make a story feel authentic. Not bad for a landlubber lass, eh?
I've also sent in another Sinbad tale for Airship 27s hot series SINBAD THE NEW VOYAGES. I think they are up to 4 volumes out, and a 5th one on the way. I will let you know when I hear something definitive about when the volume with my latest tale might be out. I did have a story in the initial offering (cover of that below), along with two other very talented gents. This is a great series folks, and a lot of fun to write!
Now, for the recent release announcements. I have two new things in print I want to talk about...
First out, was MONSTER ACES 2 from Pro Se Press. This is a multi-author written anthology conceived by the ever-creative Mr. Jim Beard, and yes, he has a story in both volumes. The premise is the adventures of a monster hunting team from the late 1930s through mid 1940s. Fun reading and writing. My tale, "THE SWARMING" takes place mostly up here in New England, and involves insectoid nasties trying to get a solid toehold in North America. What they feed on, is us. It is creepy, with a capital C. Plenty of good reading in this one.
My other release is one many of you have been impatiently waiting for: MASTER'S ENDGAME is finally out! I have probably gotten more fan input on this series than anything else I've written. Yes, you will all find out what happens to Callie, who will give birth at last, and catch up with all your other favorite characters as well. There's a big battle brewing over a portal between the world of the living, and the shadow world of monsters. If those evil things get through, there will be no place safe on the Light World side, and Callie and her baby are not all that far away. In fact, her location has been discovered, and she's in imminent danger, with little to protect her. While the battle rages, and forces to reckon with align themselves on either side, it will be a true showdown at the end to see who gets that definitive final move.
Whew, that's a lot of happy dancing for me.
I should have a couple more releases this year, because I've turned in both a third Keener Eye story for the Pro Se Singleshot Kindle-only Series, and Pro Se also has the first Sudarnian Chronicles novel—FORGED BY FLAME. This book takes place in the same over-arching world as my other imprint stories, but a different setting and time. This one is a bit more kid-friendly too, all but the youngest will be able to enjoy it. I'd suggest ages 10-12 and up, but it could be read to younger kids. The violence is not graphic, and there are no adult situations, since much of the main cast are children. Similar to the WINDRIDERS OF EVERICE, if you've read that, where there is an appeal to adults as well as advanced younger readers. Nice to have books you can read and hand down to children and grandchildren.
I should have a short post on the COMPANION DRAGONS TALES blog as well. It's been ages since I've updated that. With one release a year, and three busy people working on the series, news does come more slowly. My current schedule isn't helping me get the word out either. That said, our commitment to the series goes on, and we're scheduled for a third release this year. Those are all ages books BTW.
The whole purpose of writing for me is to please readers by providing them with some solid entertainment. I'm a lifelong reader too, so I know how books and stories help transport you out of your everyday world, so that you can kick back and just let things go. I hope I've done that.
I think Emily Dickinson said it best...