Of course, the biggest doing of this last month was the announcement of our Five Enchanted Roses winners . . . .
We are so excited about these stories and this collection as a whole. If you read the descriptions, you'll see that the premises of these tales are all much spookier than our Cinderella collection last year . . . which is only to be expected, as Beauty and the Beast is a spookier fairy tale. However, while all of the stories will give the readers little chills as they read, none of them are horror stories. They are wonderful adventures, and they all go together beautifully.
I'd also like to point out, for those of you who entered the contest but, sadly, did not win this year: Three of the authors who won places in Five Enchanted Roses submitted excellent stories last year for Five Glass Slippers, but did not get in. So let them be inspiration to you, dear aspiring novelists! Sometimes, it's not a matter of whether or not you were a good enough writer or whether or not you wrote a great story. It's the individual contest that makes the difference. And you truly never know when you will pen the right story for the right contest at the right time. All you can do is keep on writing the best stories you can!
While we're on the subject, let's not forget Five Glass Slippers and the excellent news pertaining to that collection! Which is excellent indeed. Rooglewood Press tried an experimental marketing venture last month, the results of which were . . . Five Glass Slippers shot to #1 Bestseller status, not only in the USA, but also across the globe. We were completely thrilled. I am so proud of the great marketing team we've got working together, figuring out new and exciting ways to get this collection out to a bigger and broader reading audience. This was but one step on a road we hope to continue walking for many years to come!
I have other fun and exciting news concerning this particular collection as well . . . but, it's still secret for a little while yet. Stay tuned for updates!
In case you haven't noticed, Rooglewood Press has a newsletter now, for which you can sign up to receive periodic updates on sales, promotions, new releases, etc. Do take a moment to add your name to the list!
Anyhoodle, those are all Rooglewood Press related updates . . . what about Drakenheath? Well, there is fluffiness to be had at Drakenheath:
Here's a photo of my new writing study in Drakenheath. This is the view from my desk:
I do love all my kitty-babies.
So, how is Poison Crown coming along these days?
It's also long. Very long.
Which means I am waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay behind my deadline of finishing a polished second draft by the end of February. It is physically impossible for me to meet that goal at this time. Even writing at my most frantic pace, it simply cannot be done. So I have set the deadline back to the end of April. If I manage to meet that deadline, we should still be on a good track to get the book itself launched in late November. If I don't meet that deadline, we may be looking at putting off the release by a month or two.
However, while I know that would not be your preference, please know that this book, whenever it does release, will be by far the longest, most epic, most exciting, most page-turning, most complex and compelling story I have ever written, complete with, I think, the most interesting cast of characters. Most of whom you have not yet met, though there are a few favorites tucked away in these pages (i.e. Eanrin, Rogan, and Imraldera).
For the fun it I thought I'd give you a few tiny, tiny, tiny, spoiler-free peaks at the manuscript. At random I picked page 36, seven lines down, and selected five complete sentences. Here you go:
Could Earl Dian imagine the horror an immortal must experience upon finding himself trapped in a decaying realm of mortality?
Rogan shuddered. Here alone in the snow-covered city center he felt all the eyes of the city turned upon him with such loathing. The earl himself must hate him now, even as he hated all Faerie-kind. And the memory of their many adventures—the memory of escapes and rescues and deeds worthy even of minstrel’s song—were already forgotten.
Terrible sores blistered Rogan's skin where the iron touched him.
Also at random, I picked page 100, twenty lines down, and selected five complete sentences:
The fire must have only just been lit, however, for when the castellan opened the door and ushered her in, she found the room itself was equally as cold as the passage she’d just vacated. Someone—presumably the queen—sat in a chair drawn up close to the fire, silhouetted against its light. She leaned in toward the warmth, her arms wrapped about herself, and seemed totally absorbed in discerning the secrets of those flickering flames.
“My queen,” said Calytrix, curtsying with great dignity despite her rags.
“Are you the herbalist?"
And, one last one . . . I picked page 71, twelve lines down, and selected five complete sentences:
He moved like a drunken man, his footsteps stumbling in the dark even as he mounted the steps of the Prince’s Tower and at last achieved the solitary quiet of his own chambers. Here, perhaps, he might shut out all else and, casting himself upon his bed, slip into unconscious peace for a few stolen hours.
But this was a forlorn hope. For now, in the darkness of that winter’s night, with no holy songs of the priest to sooth his spirit, with no tirades from his grandmother to occupy his mind, without the relief of his knights and their coarse conversation to distract his thoughts, he found himself suddenly obliged to look into his soul.
And he shuddered.
All right, that's enough for today! Moving on . . .
We had a little design glitch which became apparent during this first round of galleys, which sent us scrambling back to the "drawing board" temporarily. But, after a few hours of recovery work, we've got it looking spiffy once more. And I still say this is the most beautiful interior design for one of my books yet.
Oh, and in other fun news, the audio recording of Goddess Tithe is now complete and has been sent off for production! I am so excited to see this project launch. It hit a few bumps in the road during the recording stage, which slowed down production unexpectedly. But those issues have been resolved, and the end result that I got to listen to was very beautiful. I hope to see it up for purchase in another two weeks or so. And to celebrate I may just host a giveaway, offering a few copies to lucky listeners.
Would you like to hear the opening credits? Click this link!
Have I forgotten anything? Probably, but I can't think what. Oh well. I hope you enjoyed reading about the February Doings. What are you up to this month?