First Story to Latest Release
Originally posted at Emotion in Motion in October 2018.
Good day folks!
Thanks for joining me to celebrate my newest release, Leopold (Saga of the Bold People 1). It is an m/m romance sci-fi epic, and it’s the first book of a 6-book saga. I am super excited to finally release this bad boy that’s taken me around eight years to revise and edit.
Leopold might have been one of the first true stories I wrote and certainly my first novel. But he—obviously—wasn’t my first to be released. That honor goes to the novella, “A Giant’s Friend.” It was released by a publisher that has since shut down because of shady financial practices and shall remain nameless.
I’ll be honest and say that “A Giant’s Friend” wasn’t ready to be published. I was proud of it but it wasn’t up to snuff to be seen by the reading public. However, the publisher saw potential in it and released it anyway. Then some reviewer left a rather nasty review of it that was completely uncalled for—you’d think I had just personally insulted her or something—and it crushed me pretty hard. I kept publishing in spite of her and eventually had “A Giant’s Friend” removed with the intention on rewriting it and re-pubbing.
Years went by. Other books were released but I never forgot my first book. Then last year the time rolled around for me to yank it back out and read it over. Yeah, it was bad and could be so much better! I loved the characters, the setting, and the plot, so I rewrote it completely and it became the story it should have been in the first place. I released it in an anthology titled “Guardians of a Giant’s Treasure” along with two short stories that were a part of two other multi-author anthologies by the same nameless publisher.
It was amazing to realize how much I’ve grown as a writer since those early days. After re-reading “A Giant’s Friend” I was blown away how well I could fix and flesh out a story I thought was finished years earlier.
The same thing happened with Leopold. The first draft sucked. The second draft sucked. Every other subsequent drafts became slightly less sucky until finally, in the last two years, I mercilessly slashed and cut and burned and realigned many details and events until I pummeled out what is now available for purchase. I bit off more than I could chew years ago, yet now I feel far more able to handle this bad boy and the five books to come after it.
So there you have it, folks. You never stop learning. You shouldn’t stop learning. Every new book is an opportunity for me to flex my writing muscles and challenge myself. To risk. Sometimes you’ll go down in flames. Sometimes you’ll fly. Sometimes both. I truly hope Leopold will fly and that I can continue his story. Though it’s hard to give him up. I’ve been tweaking him for nearly a decade now. But no more. Now I need to move on.
I am currently working on four series simultaneously (because I am a glutton for punishment, apparently) and several stand-alones with plans for a couple of trilogies.
I have three stories contracted with Dreamspinner Press for 2019: a vampire story, the latest shifter book (#13), and the prequel to “On Wings of Thunder.”
Until next time,
May dragons guard your dreams,