Q: What is the working title of your book?
A: CURSE OF THE FALLEN or CURSE OF THE ALBEN, not sure which. What do you think? Is CURSE OF THE ALBEN confusing?
Q: Where did the idea come from for the book?
A: Short answer: This is book 4 of my Blood of the Kindred series, inspired by my short story, "Kind Hunter" (which you can read at Book View Café - it's the free sample from the anthology DRAGON LORDS AND WARRIOR WOMEN).
Q: What genre does your book fall under?
Q: Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
A: Well, Orlando Bloom is the quintessential elf in my eyes, so I'd cast him as Turisan. For Eliani - yanno, Zooey Deschanel might work! For Shalár, I think Kaley Cuoco would do a very good job. And for Luruthin, perhaps Matthew Gray Gubler.
Q: What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
A: As war with the alben intensifies in Fireshore, Eliani and Turisan return to Highstone, where the Ælven Council must decide the future of the Lost: will they be exiled like the alben, or will they become allies whose aid might tip the balance in the war?
Q: Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
A: Well, kind of neither. Since the series was dropped after book 2 by the original publisher, I have elected to continue publishing it with the help of the wonderful publishing cooperative Book View Café. Book 3, Swords Over Fireshore, came out in 2012. Oh, and this book should be out in spring of 2013.
Q: How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
A: About a year.
Q: What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
A: It's my take on a Lord of the Rings type of fantasy.
Q: Who or What inspired you to write this book?
A: Tolkein, of course. I've been a fan of LotR since I was around 12, I guess, when I first read it. I especially love elves, so my own stories are about the Ælven. Also, see question 2.
Q: What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
A: The Blood of the Kindred series is my exploration of the question posed in "Kind Hunter," namely: what if elves and vampires were originally the same race?
Book 1: The Betrayal
Book 2: Heart of the Exiled
Book 3: Swords Over Fireshore
And now, here are some other writers who are playing this game:
Patricia Burroughs http://planetpooks.com/the-blog/
Jeffrey A. Carver http://starrigger.blogspot.com
Katharine Eliska "Cat" Kimbriel http://alfreda89.livejournal.com/
Steven Harper Piziks http://spiziks.livejournal.com
Deborah J. Ross http://www.deborahjross.blogspot.com/
Laura Underwood http://laurajunderwood.livejournal.com/
Edited to add:
Kelly A. Harmon http://kellyaharmon.com/work-progress-
Cindie Geddes http://cindiegeddes.com/2012/11/29/the-
And here's mine:
“So sorry to hear about the tragic event, Ms Rosings. Do you have a few minutes to tell us about it?”
“Out on the porch would be best, I think,” said Gina, shepherding us outside to where two young men waited next to several cases that probably held electronic gear.
“I only have a few minutes,” I said. “We open at eleven.”
Ms Algodones smiled. “This won’t take long.”Next?
I'm going through and revising now, and remembering how much fun I had writing it. Looking forward to launching it into the world at the end of July.
It was a good run and I'm not upset. At times it got to be a grind, so I'm taking this opportunity to take a break and focus on some editing I need to get done. I'll probably start up with 2 pages a day again in December. Might give myself weekends off this time.
Today my first original novel ebook came out from Book View Cafe! First as in the first to come out first as an ebook. There will probably be a print edition later this year.
The novel is IMMORTAL, an urban fantasy. Here's the cover, and here's a description:
What do you do if the most gorgeous guy you've ever seen asks for your help?
No brainer. Len Whiting is smitten from the minute she sees the stranger's amazing eyes. She agrees to help Caeran find the healer he's been seeking in rural New Mexico. What Len doesn't know is that neither Caeran nor the healer is human: they're immortal ælven, and they're locked in an ancient struggle with the vampires who are their kin. Len wants Caeran’s love, and wants to help the healer find a cure—but first they must cope with the bloodthirsty vampire who's got his sights set on them all.
So - what character would you like to see tweets from?
(and if I hear nothing but crickets chirping, I'll...I dunno. I guess I'll go cry in private or something.)
BREWING FINE FICTION, Advice for Writers From the Authors at Book View Café (ISBN 978-0-9828440-3-8). BVC’s members include international bestselling authors and winners of the National Book Award, the Hugo Award, the Nebula Award, and many others. Most have sold multiple novels to major publishers. Many have taught writing at workshops around the world. The knowledge of these professional authors is gathered into one volume, edited by Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff and Pati Nagle, that will help both new and experienced writers cope with the creative challenges and the nuts-and-bolts business issues of a career in writing fiction.
“Check any bookstore and you'll find a host of titles on writing. Some are good, some not so good. Every author has his or her own strengths and weaknesses. But in BREWING FINE FICTION: Advice for writers from the authors of Bookview Café, you get a smorgasbord of professional advice and expertise. From the plausibility of fantasy, by Ursula K. Le Guin, to Deborah J. Ross's comments on reviews, you'll find every facet of the craft and writing life covered. For the wealth of information, experience, and diversity, all under one cover, you can't beat it.”
--Mary Rosenblum, Compton Crook Award winner
Contributors to Brewing Fine Fiction include: Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff, Amy Sterling Casil, Brenda W. Clough, Lori Devoti, Chris Dolley, Laura Anne Gilman, Sue Lange, Ursula K. Le Guin, Vonda N. McIntyre, Nancy Jane Moore, Pati Nagle, Steven Harper Piziks, Irene Radford, Patricia Rice, Madeleine E. Robins, Deborah J. Ross, Sherwood Smith, Jennifer Stevenson, Judith Tarr, Gerald M. Weinberg, and Sarah Zettel.
In celebration of the launch, BVC is giving out free copies of WAYS TO TRASH YOUR WRITING CAREER. This ebook is a collection of humorous stories posted to the Book View Cafe blog by the BVC authors describing the fastest ways to bring your writing career to a screeching halt. The compilation is available free of charge to anyone purchasing a copy of BREWING FINE FICTION through the BVC website. It is also for sale as a stand alone for $.99 (http://www.bookviewcafe.com/index.php/
BREWING FINE FICTION is available at the Book View Café website (along with WAYS TO TRASH YOUR WRITING CAREER) for $4.99 in pdf, epub, mobi, prc, lit, and lrf formats (http://www.bookviewcafe.com/index.php/
Sample BREWING FINE FICTION: http://www.bookviewcafe.com/index.php/
First post (read the 90-odd comments):
Second post (read the comments here too):
And an unrelated tidbit for ebook fans: all four of Sarah Zettel’s popular Paths to Camelot series are on sale for $1.99 from now until Sunday Jan. 24.
Paths to Camelot on Book View Cafe: http://www.bookviewcafe.com/index.php/
Paths to Camelot on Smashwords.com http://www.smashwords.com/books/search?
Excerpts are available at Book View Cafe and at my new website for this fantasy series, aelven.com.
I'm also doing a guest blog today at Literary Escapism, talking a bit about how I came to write this novel.
And for those in New Mexico, I've got a couple of appearances coming up. All that info is on my calendar page.
It's the equinox. Time to pause and look at where we are in the season.
To me, this is not the first day of Autumn, but the middle of Autumn. Weather is decidedly cooler; we haven't used the air conditioner for a couple of weeks. Days are just about perfect, nights beginning to be cool. The hummingbirds are still around and there are lots of robins in the bird bath. Pansies, nasturtiums, petunias, bachelor's buttons are blooming happily. Tomatoes are ripening in the garden. It's time to harvest herbs.
And the piñons! We have a good crop going this year, as evidenced by the dozens of cars alongside the road. Families come to pick piñon (pine nuts) wherever the trees grow--which around here is pretty much everywhere. We have quite a few on our land, and I went out and gathered a couple of handfuls of nuts already. Must get serious about it and bring in a good harvest, but I've been busy with revisions.
My fantasy novel, The Betrayal, launches in six months, on the Spring Equinox. In honor of that, I've posted a free read to my website: "Kind Hunter," the story that sparked the novel.
I planned to plant flowers and herbs today. (I bought a lunar gardening calendar--much fun!) Looks like the rain has paused so I'm off to do it now.
Then back to the copyedits that arrived earlier this week.
Last weekend I attended the Novelists, Inc. Conference in New York. I am still processing all the great ideas and information. What a fantastic conference, and well worth the time and money!
This was my fourth NINC conference, and the first one I've been able to get to in New York. All of the conferences I've attended have been great. I think this one beat the rest, though. They just keep getting better every time. For someone who intends to make a career out of writing novels, this is a terrific group. Not only do you get to meet lots of wonderful writers (like Mary Jo Putney, Rebecca York, and Laura Resnick), you also meet industry professionals who have great information to share.
I had the pleasure of meeting my editor, Liz Scheier, who is lovely and gracious. Six degrees of separation came into play when I discovered she already knew my travel buddy and roommate, Pari Noskin Taichert, from a Southwest Writers Workshop conference years ago.
Theresa Rebeck was our keynote speaker, delightfully entertaining. She talked about her own writing experiences, and boy could we relate! (There's a fun interview with her on the NINC website.)
Sessions included panels with agents, publishers, editors, and publicity professionals. Writer and publisher Lou Aronica gave a fantastic presentation to cap the conference. He brought some things into focus that I had been trying to understand for years. I'm still absorbing what he talked about, and I'm going to be making some changes here in the blog because of it.
This is not a conference for aspiring writers. It's for experienced writers, and that makes all the difference.
Recently I passed the three-year mark on the 2+ pages challenge. I got this from Julie Hyzy, who's been doing it way longer than I have.
Simple idea, really. Write two manuscript pages a day. More if you want, but at least two.
Rain or shine, sick or well, disaster or no.
I wrote on the Katrina days. It helped me remember the world beyond the horrible sadness of that time.
Two manuscript pages equals about 500 words. Some writers have asked me how I manage to write so much every day. Others I know would laugh at how little that is.
What matters is the "every day" part. I learned about this idea long ago. Roger Zelazny used to require himself to sit down three times a day and write at least one sentence. The idea was that at least one of those times, he'd get caught up in the writing and do more. Regardless, even three sentences a day adds up surprisingly quickly, and what's perhaps more important, it keeps the writing fresh in your mind.
Some writers work in spurts, producing many pages in a short amount of time (like a novel in a month, or in a week), and then take long breaks, maybe a month or two or more. Me, I have trouble getting started again after that long away. If I need a break from one project, I find it's better to write on a different project for a while than to stop writing altogether.
So I write two pages on weekends, on my birthday, my anniversary, and when I'm on vacation. On regular work days I try to write more.
Two pages a day = 730 pages a year = 182,500 words which is about two novels or one really big one. Again, some writers can't fathom writing that much in a year. Others write a lot more than that in a year.
The point is, find a process that works for you and stick to it. Two pages plus has worked pretty well for me for three years.
Wrote 5 pages today (got inspired)
Points in The Race:
25 for short stories
32 for novels
This story has its own story, which will come as no surprise to you writers out there. I wrote it with the intent to submit it to a specific magazine (they were doing a Valentine's issue), but the magazine folded before they even read my story. Needless to say, the Valentine's issue never materialized, and I thought I'd wasted my effort. I sent it out anyway, remembering my mentors' advice (thank you, Kris & Dean), and lo and behold, Cricket liked it. Voila, happy ending!
4 pages written today
Points in The Race:
22 for short stories
32 for novels
Today I received a contract in the mail for a two-book deal with Del Rey. They announced it a while back in their July Internet newsletter, but I've been waiting for the contract in hand before yipping.
So, yip! I am very happy. The novels will be fantasies. I'm delighted to be working with editor Liz Scheier on these books. More news as it comes.
2 pages written today (then I drove a truckload of mead from Santa Fe to Bernalillo for the Wine Festival)
Points in The Race:
25 for short stories
16 for novels (down 16 points the good way--through a sale!)
Lots going on in the garden these days. My patio pots are blooming nicely. Petunias and lobelias, also salvia that I grew from seed this year for the first time. Very proud of those.
The veggie patch is not so photogenic, but still wonderful. I have four varieties of tomato, all doing well though the clear winner is the Sweet Million, which was recommended by the local nursery. Before I got those I had planted a Sweet 100, and two Oregon Springs which are supposed to be good for higher altitudes, and a Big Boy that was in with the Sweet 100's and that I bought by mistake. Even it is happy. All the tomatoes are blooming and several are setting fruit, and the Sweet Million has a couple already ripening.
Chives are coming into a second bloom. Parsley (grown from seed) is doing well. I started a big bowl of mixed lettuce for microgreens last week, and they are now coming up.
This year I'm growing nasturtiums for the first time. They're fun! And edible. I understand the leaves taste like watercress. Maybe I'll try an egg-and-nasturtium sandwich with my tea. They are also good companion plants and repel squash bugs, according to the Wikipedia entry. That's terrific! Those squash bugs are terrible pests. I'm going to grow nasturtiums every year!
One plant that was here when we moved in is pink yarrow, which I had never seen before. Here it is in its bed, along with some spearmint. I also have white yarrow and moonshine yarrow (yellow).
This morning when I was tying up the tomatoes, I heard an owl. Nice moment.
Dean Wesley Smith has made a great blog post about The Race, which he invented. Really interesting history, and some names you'll recognize.
4 pages written today, plus 3 chapters edited of a completed novel.
Points in The Race:
25 for short stories
32 for novels