April 12th, 2008

writing gorey earbrass unspeakable horro

brave and restless dreams are both won and lost

maryrobinette and jaylake and stillsostrange are talking about writing and selling novels. I can do that.

Novel 0: Seabird, juvenilia. Interminable Quest Fantasy with new extra added plot coupons. I have recycled several elements of this story elsewhere--Gavin, Kasimir, and so on. I wrote the first completed draft in fifth grade or so, and rewrote it over and over again afterwards.

Novels 00-00000: Several uncompleted juvenilia projects, ranging in length between 10K (a Mary Sue spy book called Belladonna I was working on in high school) and 40K (No More than a Star, a police procedural vampire novel started and abandoned in the early 90s. Several of the better characters from this--Don Smith, Geoffrey and Jewels, Daniel Tescher (You haven't met him yet: he's in Patience & Fortitude)--have been recycled into the Promethean Age books.

1. All the Windwracked Stars. Edda of Burdens #1. I started the first stories that would eventually become this novel in 1992 or so, as character contributions for a role-playing game. Having filed off every conceivable serial number, I eventually finished a Very Different first draft in January of 2002. My now-agent, who was not my agent then, rejected it. A very, very, very different version sold to Tor in... early 2007? Or late 2006. Must have been late 2006, along with the two related books. After being rejected by Roc and Bantam.

2. The Sea thy Mistress, Edda of Burdens #3 a sequel to ATWS, written in 2002. Still needs to be revised extansively (like, complete rewrite) for 2010 publication.

3. By the Mountain Bound, Edda of Burdens #2, a prequel to ATWS, written in one month spanning June and July of 2002. Has been completely rewritten, needs another round of revision for 2009 publication.

4. Hammered, Jenny Casey #1, which I started in a very different form as a short novella in 1994 or 1995. Finally finished a draft that was recognizable as the story that finally saw publication in late 2002. This was the book my agent signed me on, and the first book she sold--in late 2003. Published in very early 2005, along with its two siblings. Before Keri Arthur and Naomi Novik came along and kicked my butt, I was the Random House record holder for speedy delivery and publication of a trilogy from sale to last book on the shelf.

5. Blood & Iron. Promethean Age #1. Originally titled Daoine, then Shadowhand, then Bridge of Blood & Iron. This started off as a graphic novel script when I was in high school, and then this Matt Wagner guy came along and did something very cool and way too similar, so fifteen years later I made drastic changes and turned it into a novel. Funny thing is, some of the lines have stayed word for word the same since that very first scribbled in a notebook draft. Matthew Szczgielniak did not exist in the very earliest versions of this novel. I finished a complete draft of the book that would eventually become published as Blood & Iron: A Novel of the Promethean Age, in January of 2003. It only had one POV, and was even more airless and claustrophobic than the eventually published version. This sold to Roc in.... 2005, if I recall correctly, after being rejected by Bantam.

6. Scardown: Jenny Casey #2, written in early 2003. Sold, with Hammered, in November 2003.

7. The Cobbler's Boy: I started writing this one with Sarah Monette while she was working on her dis and I was writing the book that was at that point in time known as The Stratford Man. We finished it, as I recall, before either her dis or my novel. Still unsold.

8. Ink & Steel (and)

9. Hell & Earth: Promethean Age 4 & 5, formerly collectively known as The Stratford Man and then individually by various other titles. Started in very late 2002, finished in very late 2003, revised extensively and repeatedly since, sold in 2007, being published in 2008.

10. Worldwired: Jenny Casey #3, sold in 2003, written in 2004. The first book I wrote after selling it.

11. One-Eyed Jack & the Suicide King: Written in early 2004. Not yet sold. Promethean Age 5

12. A Companion to Wolves: With Sarah Monette, again. I think we wrote this one in about a month of frantic effort in 2004, and after it was rejected by both our publishers, sold it to Tor at WisCon or World Fantasy in a breakfast pitch meeting.

13. Whiskey & Water: Promethean Age 2, sold as a package with Blood & Iron, and actually the last completed PA novel written, though the second one published.

14. Carnival: the first novel I sold on a proposal, 100 pages plus synopsis, rather than as a complete manuscript. Sold and written in 2005, published in 2006. 

15. Undertow: The "and an additional novel" in the two-book deal for Carnival. Sold 2005, written 2006, published 2007.

16. New Amsterdam: A mosaic novel, composed of interlinked novelettes and novellas written between 2002-2006. Sold and published in 2007, if I recall correctly.

17. Dust: Sold from a proposal in late 2006, completed in the first two months or so of 2007, published in January of  2008.

18. Refining Fire: A short Shadow Unit novel written with Emma Bull in 2007, which we will be web-publishing in May. (That's right: I wrote a novel with Emma Bull. And we are giving it away free, except for the ever present guilt looks of hungry writers, and a tip jar.)

19. Chill: 2/3rds written. Was supposed to be delivered next week: I am asking for an extension.

20. Grail: Under contract, not yet started.

21: Patience & Fortitude: This will be Promethean Age 6, if anyone buys it. Started, not yet sold or written. But I have fifty pages or so.

22: A Treachery of Princes: This could be Edda of Burdens #4, if the first three do all right. I have about 20K of it, but it's not sold, and I fear what I shall find when I open the file.

23: Between the Bones: This could be Edda of Burdens #5. I have maybe a half-chapter written.

I also have two novellas that will be published as stand-alone books sold. One, Bone and Jewel Creatures, is complete in draft except the scene that makes it all make sense. The other, which is the Sebastien and Abby Irene novel, has no title yet, but needs to be written next month.

froud tapestry

For everybody who asked/commented

Here's the website of Jean-Sébastien Rossbach, who is the cover artist for All the Windwracked Stars. stillsostrange, you want to go look at this magazine profile where he has creepy stuff  in addition to the illustration work.

He seems to have done a lot of book covers in France, and I am pleased to death with the look-and-feel of his work as selected for the Eddas covers. (I'm taking a leap of faith here and assuming he will be doing the covers for By the Mountain Bound and The Sea thy Mistress, too, because publishers usually like a unified cover feel.)

His blog/newscrawl is here.

Nice stuff.
comics invisibles king mob

with one fist clenched in anger with one foot in the fire

In the last two days on my morning constitutional, the signs of spring are everywhere. Yesterday I heard a woodpecker playing "Moby Dick" up by Elizabeth Park (both coming and going; she must have found a good spot). I've seen fat squirrels playing tag, people exercising dogs large and small, roofers and lawn services, a sparrow disappearing into the eaves of a lovely Victorian bearing a flowering twig in her claws, another sparrow puffed up fat in a small bare tree. The maples are covered in a red froth of tiny blossoms. Today two magnolias are starting, one pink and one snow-white, neither fully open yet. Soon, I must extend my route to take me through the park, because soon the park will be flowering.

It was rainy overnight, but it's lightly overcast with gray sunlight now.

Speaking of said constitutional, I can call it a run without irony today, as I jogged the whole two miles (sparing a two-block warm-up and cool-down.) On the way out, I hit a nice sustainable easy lope and just stuck with it (never underestimate the importance of finding your stride.) I felt good enough at my turning point that after I stretched out and breathed for five minutes, I ran back the same way. I'm adapting--my left knee twinged for the first half mile, but I ran it out, and I felt good enough in terms of cardio to have kept going at the end, but my arches had been killing me for a quarter mile so I gave it up. Still, the shoes are finally breaking in, thank God, and my feet are getting used to it.

16:40 on the way out, 16:06 on the way back. 221.7 mile to Lothlorien.
Go team me.

In other news, very nice Washington Post review of Dust.