For what I want to do, I do not do….
That’s an incomplete and out-of-context quote from a 1st-century Roman Jew named Paulus. But it fits. At the very least, it speaks to an insolvable aspect of the human condition. We so often know what good we need to do but can’t get ourselves to do it.
Lots of existential dreck bound up in those thoughts. But I don’t have the energy to delve into it all and make something brilliant out of these ruminations BECAUSE IN CASE YOU HAVEN’T NOTICED THE WORLD’S ON FIRE
(how ’bout yours?)
La la la.
I have a lot to do and not much year left to do it in. If you recall, Gentle Reader, Constant Reader, Faithful Reader, I’m putting together the 10th anniversary omnibus author’s preferred edition of my first two Light-Walker novels, Rethana’s Surrender and Rethana’s Trial. I’m tightening up the writing, finding errors we didn’t find 10-11 years ago, and *gasp and pearl-clutch* retconning a few things. I have my woes and increasing doubts about self-publishing, but the one massive benefit still remains: I get to change and fix things as I feel I need to. Creative control is a beautiful thing.
Currently, I’m about three-fourths finished with the final edits. Then I gotta put the whole thing together: Book 1, Book 2, and the “Rethana’s Tower” short story. I won’t be calling them “Books 1&2” in the text, but I’m considering revamping them as “Part 1: The Captive” and “Part 2: The Something I Don’t Know Yet Placeholder.” Or maybe I’ll just leave out the split and mush them both together the way they were originally. I suspect I’ll leave that decision until the last minute because I CAN. Boom.
I want to wrap up all interior text by November 30th so that on December 1st, I can turn my entire focus to painting the cover art. Yes, I am doing it myself, and yes, I am capable. It’s just that a painting of this type takes a metric feces-ton of work, and I won’t have enough time to fix things if something goes massively awry. Which let’s face it, tends to happen on a frequent basis in this universe.
And IF IF IF I can possibly manage it, I want to make a couple more maps to include in the book. Ideally — and this is the pipe dream — one of the new maps will be a comprehensive one of the entire Light-Walker universe during the era I’ve set most of the stories in. Keep in mind, I know nothing about mapmaking beyond what I’ve gleaned here and there by virtue of being obsessed with the fantasy genre for the past 35 years. Being an artist doesn’t hurt either. But I’m by no means a pro, and I really should hire someone to do this stuff.
Speaking of, I really need a cover artist, a mapmaker, a line editor, a copy editor, and a trade dress artist person, I forget what that’s called.
Anyway, I wanna hit “publish” on Rethana no later than December 31st. Preferably sooner than that because [see above paragraph about feces and universal hooplas].
In related news, UPCOMING PROJECTS.
As previously noted (I think, but I’m not gonna go back and check because you all know how to use a search function and I’m 45 and tired), as of this blogging I have five book-length Light-Walker works in at least 1st draft form: The Flight of Elfled unBlessed, Return of the Pelegrin, The Priestess Murders, Malefactors, and The Perset Pack.
As soon as the Rethana book is done and out the door, I plan to start getting Malefactors ready. Beta reader feedback has not been great: either I’ve gotten no response or I’ve gotten negative response. At least the negative feedback has given me something to work with so I can make changes. Plus, I haven’t looked at the text myself in at least a year, so I’ll be coming to it with fresher eyes and will find plenty to revise and rewrite, damn my eyes.
I want to do Malefactors first, because it kind of feels like a cloud of doom hanging over my head. It contains some very dark stories, so it’s not just the unpleasant/nonexistent beta feedback getting me down about it. I love my malefactors, but they’re not exactly happy folk to keep in the forefront of my head and I would like them out of my house.
After Malefactors, I want to release into the wild either Elfled or Priestess Murders. Probably Elfled, as that one’s much closer to being ready. It’s also been around the longest, and I adore Elfled with all my heart, and she deserves to get dusted off and sent out to play. She’s perky and plucky, she’ll be fine.
I’m thinking Mals and Elfled should keep me busy for the first half of 2023. After that, I plan to focus on something I never thought I’d do: penning a complete guide to my Light-Walkers universe.
In going over Rethana’s story and retconning things here and there, I discovered that I’d forgotten a lot about her particular section of the world. Flora, fauna, dialects, architecture, geography…. I had a lot of it stored in my head, but inevitably bits and bobs had gone missing. I had to hunt up notes I made 20 years ago. I x-refd with other novels, published and un-. I peered at and pored over hastily scribbled maps and gained confirmation that it’s probably time for bifocals.
The crux of it is that over the past two months, I’ve spent a lot of time foraging for deets, time I could’ve spent working on the actual book. I don’t wanna hafta do that again. Hence the brainworm of putting it all together in one coherent, gargantuan, easy-to-refer-to doorstop. Which will probably never make its way out into the galaxy unless it executes a jailbreak and makes a mad dash across No-Book’s-Land.
So. Rethana’s omnibus (not the title), Malefactors, Elfled, and Complete Guide. Voy-oh-lay.
Also, I want to blog more.