18 Apr

Progress Report: It’s all over but the screaming

We’re whizzing toward preorder time!

Editor Angie has done what she can. I have addressed her recommendations.

The sad placeholder text on the cover has been replaced.

Silent Song Cover

We tried a dozen “realistic” options for the claw-mark tattoo, and the cheap “suggestion” looks less obnoxious, so that’s how it will stay.

I’m looking at the book file like a reader will be looking at it soon.

Silent Song loaded on my Kindle.

The copyeditor will get it tomorrow, but first I have to do the writerly equivalent of tidying up before the maid comes so she can concentrate on the really messy parts.

The plan is to have preorder set up by close of business Friday. If I somehow miss the preorder cutoff for a May 1 release, I’ll release it immediately rather than make you wait longer for such a stupid reason. WE HAVE ALL WAITED LONG ENOUGH!

ETA 4/19: Proofreading is done. Amazon is loaded.

Preorder for Silent Song set up for Amazon

If I fuck it up, they’ll revoke my preorder privileges for a year, so I wouldn’t have gone forward if I wasn’t absolutely 100% ready to go. They have THE FINAL FILE, not a placeholder.

I’ll format for the other vendors and upload to them tomorrow. I’d like to get it done NOW, but I’ve put in a 14-hour day and I’m about to drop.

ETA 4/19, Later: Okay, I wasn’t going to be able to sleep, so it’s all done and trickling through the system. Links will go up as they become available!

Amazon  |  Google  |  Kobo  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Apple

I’ll work on the paperback tomorrow.

ETA 4/20: One of these days, I’ll remember to design a paperback cover FIRST and chop it down to an ebook cover because it is always SUCH a drag trying to make a wraparound cover out of the front only.

Silent Song print cover

Now that I look at it here, my name on the spine is too big. If I shrink that, I can move everything toward the center.

This whole finishing stretch is like that. Stare at the text or the graphics for 12 hours and think it’s fine. Look at it on another device and immediately find 10 things wrong with it.

ETA 4/22: Ebooks are where they belong. Paperback is formatted and awaiting approval so I can order proof copies. Copyright is filed. New-release-and-nothing-else newsletter is scheduled to go out on release day, May 1. I have a couple of ads to design, and then I can stuff this book in a box, forget everything about it, and start cluttering up my desk with something new.

ETA 4/27: The print proof arrived, and the cover is blacker than a politician‘s heart. I knew there were color issues between screen (illuminated) and print (opaque flat), but it hasn’t been a problem with bright-colored covers. I upped the brightness by 20% and the contrast by 10% and sent the cover file back for review.

If you want a paperback, sorry about the extra delay. I just don’t want anybody getting a book as ugly as the one I got. Fingers crossed this round of adjustments is the last.

28 Sep

Temporary Description for Silent Song

Silent Song Cover

“Whatever it looked like from the outside, there’s only ever been one woman.”—Lex Perry

I had it all. Fame. Fortune. A once-in-ten-lifetimes love with a brilliant, beautiful, battle-scarred goddess. And an addiction that was done sharing my attention. I survived. My fall from grace never stopped fans from throwing money and panties at me. All I lost for my weakness was the heart Gin—the woman, not the booze—took with her when she left.

“His recovery began the moment I walked out of his life. He’s thrived without me.”—Gin Greene

I pushed the man I loved to the brink of death and abandoned him there. Now, I want to exploit his extraordinary talent to boost my career. In his shoes, I’d tell me to go to hell, but Lex charges to my rescue as if he’s been waiting for me to need him. As if there are no hard feelings. As if what I did to him can ever be forgiven.

The old walls between us crumble as our relentless attraction pulls us back together. But he’s not the only man from my past who wants a second shot at me, and that unfinished business could destroy us both…

I may completely trash this before publication, but it’s what I’m working with for placeholder purposes. The Good: It’s within the 200-word limit and hits key points (they used to be together, why it didn’t work last time, why they’re reuniting, and the danger element, which is why I mentioned she has preexisting scars). The Bad: Everything else. Writing descriptions is the worst, and screwing it up can kill a book. But no pressure!

The format nods at a pull-quote scheme I aspired to in the early days of writing this story, which I subsequently abandoned because (a) it was hard to come up with enough of them that were chapter-relevant and (b) I don’t want to interrupt your reading flow with a gimmick. Chapter numbers are practically invisible. Pull quotes make you stop and read and wonder how/if they’re going to matter, and meanwhile, you’ve lost any enthusiasm you had leaving the previous chapter. Since I abandoned it inside, I don’t necessarily love it here.

There are so many wrong impressions to be made at the description stage, I can’t even distinguish legitimate issues from paranoia anymore, so I’ll open the mic to you in regard to my first-person description (I, I, I) concern.

[poll id=”2″]

UPDATE: Thanks to everybody who participated. Though the results skewed overwhelmingly toward “It’s all good, baby,” the more I thought about it, the more unnecessarily misleading it seemed. Why create a wrong impression for anybody? So I’ve changed it to third person to accurately reflect the POV in the book. If you’re interested, the result is on the Books page.

22 May

Crap Draft Accomplished!

I had my doubts this day would ever arrive (it’s been a rough seven months in many, many respects), but I finally scrounged up enough oomph to blast through the last 20,000 words or so and reached the finish line of the first full draft of New Book.

(I wrote a similar post about 10KH on May 13 of last year, so despite what has often felt like backward progress, I’m actually not that far behind where I expected to be.)

Back when I started with 40,000 words of partial scenes and dialogue snippets, I predicted this draft would be about 80,000 words, and I was pretty darn close.

Considering I barely write full sentences on the first pass, that’s a lot of words. Some of them will get cut, but I’ll have to add a lot more to put some meat on the bare bones.

What now? Well, right now, it’s late and I’m having the book shakes, so after I post this, I’m calling it a night. Tomorrow, I’ll overheat my printer and use up a toner cartridge printing out the manuscript because I prefer words I can touch to words on a screen. Then, I’ll let the story rest for a few days while I reread my craft notebooks and my go-to how-to-write books to refresh my skills and jog loose ideas for the work that lies ahead. Then, armed with a stack of notes, a plan, and a mighty pen, I’ll rewrite until the story is as good as Ren 2017 can make it. (After that will come editors and more revision and proofreading and formatting and the boring parts of publishing. The cover, at least, is pretty much done already, so that’s one less thing to extend the delay.)

Let’s see, what can I tell you about it without violating my NOBODY LOOKS AT THE PRECIOUUUUUUUUS policy? I already gave you one hint in an earlier post.

So… Hint #2: Being in the public eye carries with it an element of risk, which adds a suspense subplot—not enough that I’d dare categorize it in Romantic Suspense, but there’s definitely some physical peril in addition to the emotional ups and downs.

AND THAT’S ALL YOU GET OF THE PRECIOUUUUUUUUUUS FOR NOW! If you have any questions about this book or writing or menstrual cups or whatever, drop them in the comments. I’ll only evade and hiss at some of them.