Right now I'm part of an all-genre sales bundle for April. All books are $2.99 or less. The sale even includes non-fiction and it's a grab bag of interesting books that might not appear in other, more specialized genre promotions. There are many gems in here, including more cross-genre or unusual books. It’s a very entertaining bundle! My book is Consuela and it is priced at $1.99. There's no pressure to buy (although all the authors would love it if you did) and it’s a great way to find samples of the books on retailers, and scout out authors you'd like to bookmark or follow. Follow this link!
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My next book will be an anthology of shorts—a couple of funny fairy-tale stories, some screenplays satirizing popular entertainment, and an adventure novella about homeschooled kids, called “Movies at the Beach,” which never made it into any other publication. All but one of these have not been published before, though a few were linked as files in blog posts years ago and circulated among friends. (My blog was a very informal affair back then!) The little pieces are roughly middle-grade or younger YA, and just good clean fun. I would think if I was very fortunate they might remind you of the mixture of zany humor and strong emotion in L.M Montgomery’s Chronicles of Avonlea.
After this book, I have three ideas for the future. I'm just not yet settled on the publicaton order. The first is another historical project, this time set in Scotland. When I found all the stuff I’m putting in the upcoming anthology. I also realized I had many uncompleted, rather crunchy story bits drifting around in manuscript form. These little drafts never went anywhere because they lacked a final element. Something about them just wasn’t coming together. But the Scottish setting (which is a really neat one to work with) gives them the missing piece, which is a strong location in which to place the new story that is exploding on a sudden tangent out of those old scattered bits.
I’ve been up in the air about whether to do a third Palladia book. (To turn City of the Invaders and Consuela into a trilogy.) These two stories were written very close together—6 to 7 years ago. A third book would be written years after the others and my life and audience have changed so much this book might not have consistency. However, the main pro for the idea is that trilogies have a finality that two stories just don’t provide AND that authors do sometimes work on a book in their series much later. These books usually have a different “feeling” to them, but that’s not necessarily bad. So we’ll see.
The third idea is for a Christian fantasy book, for adults. I’ve tried the “Christian” genre label with some of my books before, but they are now happily settling into other genres. One of the reasons several of them lost this label is that they were for young audiences. Many readers of the Christian genre want to read about flawed characters and spiritual themes in books for adults. Writing this genre or reading it does not make you more or less Christian. Many Christians prefer mainstream fiction and those who write Christian fiction want it to be meaningful to non-Christians too. It’s about a particular type of story. And I’ve always wanted to broaden and find the characters in that story.
And there will be more updates.
During the last 2 1/2 years, I’ve steadily blogged and posted on social media about working on all my previous material. My goal was to develop a coherent label, something people could recognize and feel confident about reading. They would know who I was and what I “offered,” a connection that was lacking in my early publishing years. Everyone drifts at first until they get a handle on something new, including publishing. At least, I really hope this is true—otherwise, I was just a super-clutz at first. 😊
While this was going on, I didn’t put out any additional books. My most recent book, A Year with the Harrisons, was just an older story that got delayed in publication. So after Bellevere House, which was part of a group project in 2017, I went on creative shutdown and into branding mode. Every time I would try to work on new ideas, I had to return to what was already out there and make it better. As a result, these earlier books became continually NEW as their audiences and marketing grew more structured to get them in line with a developing brand of low-key, pleasant fiction.
Working on all 9 books at once involved a bit of rewriting, some editing, a lot of new cover design, and major analysis. Lots and lots and lots of analysis of the story components and how they measured up. I became a one-track feedback machine, from my own perceptions to the reactions of other people. And as those books got whipped into shape, it was pretty full-time, you might say. It wasn’t possible to add a tenth—a really new publication—to the list yet, much as I wanted to.
But I am creating new ideas and I hope to move forward this year into the next phase—a new book!
And there will be more updates.
There are still a few loose ends that need to be tied up with my other books. But I’m starting to look ahead to working on Temmark Osteraith. I wanted to do that months ago, but things can get set back. It’s important to lay a solid foundation and getting all my books in order was an essential part of that. It’s actually building a house to last instead of throwing some sticks together because you need shelter in the moment.
The world of Temmark Osteraith used to be the “Milland” world and appeared in a couple of stories about a girl named “Alyce” who got into all kinds of trouble. So it feels long ago—but also moving forward in an important way. I finished most of the story of what will now be Temmark Osteraith fifteen years ago and I’m such a different person now, in a lot of ways, that I think the audience attitude to the book now will be quite different from the audience for Milland. Or even for some of my other books published more recently.
Temmark Osteraith has maybe a bit of a wilder aspect, if you’d like to call it that, than the old world of Alyce’s Milland. It was this very off-beat, funny, kind of adventure in a period-historical type of world. Whereas in Temmark Osteraith we have a futuristic world, characters that aren’t even human, and a house that still a bit resembles an old mansion, but with an unpredictable personality of its own. A lot is different now from that original draft—setting, character names, some of the plot, you name it—but it still has things that are similar too. A bridge between the past and where my writing is today, to the extent I think it actually brings out the story that was always underlying Milland instead of replacing it.
And there will be more updates.
Author of Science Fiction, General Fiction, Historical Fiction, and Anthology Fiction
Always looking to better my craft.
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Bellevere House has been featured on Ezvid Wiki video "10 Wonderfully Inventive Retellings That Interpret Classic Stories in a New Way." Click to see the video.