I’m happy to say that work on the next Alice Long book, Merciful Troubleshooter, is well underway. I’m currently finishing up chapter 9, and tentatively looking at a release sometime in late summer or early fall. You can expect to see some previews from that here in a few months, and since it’s going to be a longer book than Thrall I may end up previewing more chapters.
In other news, I’ve decided to get off of the Patreon platform. They’ve apparently decided it’s okay to play thought police by banning anyone who dares to voice an opinion they don’t approve of, even if it’s published on a different platform. To me that simply isn’t acceptable behavior for a private company, so I’m not going to be supporting them anymore. Instead I’m moving to SubscribeStar, where I’ll continue to offer bonus chapters and sneak peeks to fans who are interested.
Good news, folks. I’ve finally finished writing Thrall, and the Kindle ebook is set to go on sale December 1. I’m not sure about the audiobook version yet – we’re about to start production, but I probably won’t have a date from the guys who do that for another week or so.
As for the previews, yes, I’m late with the next snippet. When I started doing editing I found a lot more revisions in the early parts of the book than I’d originally expected, and I didn’t want to risk publishing a passage that later got removed or substantially changed. At this point I’ve finished all the changes, and I’m just going to be doing proofreading, so previews will resume in a couple of days.
Those of you who are impatiently waiting for Thrall will be happy to hear that I’ve just finished chapter 19, so things are still on track for a fall release. I’m still projecting that the book will be about 23-24 chapters long, so I’ve only got about four chapters to go.
My plans for Alice have undergone substantial revisions, because I finally have a plot for a real sequel to Perilous Waif. Merciful Troubleshooter is going to be a door-stopper of a book, but it should be fun to write. We’ll see a lot more of the weird societies and advanced technology of the 26th century, and explore what it’s like to work security for a crew of shady characters when their past comes back to haunt them. The events of the novella I’d been planning will end up being worked into the latter half of the book.
Finally, I’ve decided how I’m going to handle preview content for my books from now on. I like to post the first few chapters of a novel here before its release date, so readers can get some idea of what to expect. But my books sometimes undergo major revisions as they’re being written, and I don’t want to post a chapter and then discover I need to completely re-write it before publication.
Luckily I’ve also decided I need to move to a more professional pre-publication process, including using a proofreading service to help rid my manuscripts of all those little typos and grammatical snafus that tend to sneak past me. That adds a few weeks between finishing the first draft and actual publication, which gives me an interval where I know there aren’t going to be any more major changes. So what I’m going from now on is post the first preview chapter as I wrap up the end of a book, and then post another preview every couple of weeks during the editing process.
At my current rate of progress, that means you can expect the first public preview of Thrall in early August.
I see it’s been a while since I did a status post, so I suppose I’d better give an update.
I’m just finishing up chapter 14 of Thrall, the next Daniel Black novel. My current outline has the book being 23 chapters long, so the end is in sight on this one.
The next Alice Long story is a novella that’s currently at 4 chapters, out of an expected 12 or so. The way things are going it will probably be done around the same time as Thrall.
I’ve been doing some outlining and background work on the sueprhero story that I’ve mentioned before, but that’s defintiely on the back burner for now. I’ve also been considering a military SF concept set in the same universe as Alice Long’s story, but that’s a lower priority project at the moment.
So it looks like I should end up having two releases this year, but they’ll probably both be in the Fall.
Another month, another status post.
I’ve been a bit more focused since the last update, finishing two more chapters of Thrall. So far my inspiration seems to be holding steady, and if I can manage the same again next month I’ll be about 2/3 of the way through the book.
I’ve gotten a decent bit of writing done since the last update, although by efforts have been a bit unfocused. Another chapter of Thrall is done, along with a couple of chapters of the next Alice Long story. I also have another two chapters of the superhero story I mentioned in the last status post.
Letting myself switch stories when inspiration strikes seems to be working better than trying to chain myself to a single book, so I’m going to continue to experiment with it this month. I can live with having a longer delay between books in the same series if it means I get more total work out the door. But I’m going to give this new method anther month or two before I call it a success, so we’ll see how it goes.
I’ve moved since the last update, and the inevitable hassle of packing, unpacking and dealing with unexpected problems ended up consuming a lot of my month. But everything is back to normal now, and I’m finally making progress again.
Thrall has undergone extensive revisions since the last update, to address some major plot issues that have been bothering me since I started writing it. The original version had a major problem with a shortage of interesting antagonists, but thanks to a suggestion from my beta reader that’s no longer going to be a problem. I had to switch a lot of scenes around and drop a few plot threads that no longer lead anywhere, but all that work is now finished. I’m finally feeling good about the flow of the narrative, so with any luck that will be the last major revision.
Meanwhile, I’ve written a couple of chapters of that superhero story I mentioned last time. My muse seems to be pretty interested in the idea, so it may end up being the next thing I publish after Thrall. But as usual, I’m not going to make any predictions until I’m a lot closer to publication.
Well, I’m officially never going to publish any guesses about a release date again. I’m not a particularly fast writer to begin with, and trying to rush only makes things worse.
At the moment the next Daniel Black book, Thrall, is about half done. This book really didn’t want to be written, and I’ve spent quite a bit of time trying to iron out various problems and get the plot to behave. It’s still my major project at the moment, but it will be done when it’s done.
I’ve also done a bit of work on an Alice Long novella, which will probably end up at 30,000 words or so. This may or may not end up being finished before Thrall, depending on what I feel inspired to work on.
Several other projects are on the back burner. I’ve done a bit of preliminary work on a Horatio Alger story set in the Aliceverse, a superhero trilogy that would be something of an answer to Watchmen, and an extremely smutty alien invasion story. But those are long-term projects that may or may not ever come to fruition, and certainly aren’t going to get much attention this year.
As you can see, I’ve decided to re-launch my blog on a new platform.
Writer’s blogs don’t seem to be very effective as marketing tools, and for several months I’d been considering just letting mine go dormant. But the continued stream of queries has convinced me that it serves a useful purpose despite the relatively low traffic level, so I’m going to give it another try here.
Here’s what you can expect to see:
- Monthly updates about the status of my writing. Generally these will be posted on the first Sunday of the month.
- A monthly writing snippet from my upcoming works. These will be shorter than the chapters I post for my Patreon supporters, but still generally 1,000 – 1,500 words.
- Commentary on the publishing industry, my own writing and related topics, including occasional answers to questions posed by fans. I don’t plan to be one of those guys who writes daily blog posts, but I’m going to try being a bit more active than I have been in the past.
My current plan is to try this out for the rest of the year, and evaluate the amount of effort involved compared to the readership the blog attracts.