>”Reaper” the new Soul Screamers online novella will officially be out in nine days, and my plan was to post one short quote a day on Twitter and Facebook until the release. But (surprise!) there is no need for that now. It looks like my publisher and Books on Board have teamed up to offer an early look (read: the entire novella). So “Reaper” is now available for free in PDF format from Books on Board.
They’re currently charging for the other formats (as was everyone else, when I last checked) but my understanding was that it was going to be free everywhere for at least a little while, so I’m still checking on that. But for now, you can read it early by clicking on the link above, though I think you need to sign up for a Books on Board account to do so.
In other news, I’m continuing to tap away at the new adult manuscript. I’m pleased with how it’s going so far, but in nearly every chapter, I’ve had to leave myself a note to go back and establish another little bit of worldbuilding earlier. This is frustrating, but normal in the first book of a series, because I’m actually learning about the characters and the world myself, throughout the process of writing this first manuscript.
During the rewrites, I’ll go back and incorporate the bits I didn’t know yet when I wrote the manuscript, then, during critiques and revisions, my critique partner and editor will let me know whether or not my worldbuilding is clear and interesting. They will also point out the parts that are rough or confusing.
This is one of the most difficult manuscripts I’ve written, because it doesn’t rely on any established creature lore. When you pick up a vampire book (for example–I’m not writing vampires), no matter what liberties the author has taken, you know that at its heart, it’s a story about one person (kind of) who feeds off other people. That goes for literal vampires, psychic vampires, and even real-world social parasites, like the family moocher. The reader goes into the story with some idea of what to expect.
But in my new series, there’s no mythology to use as a basis, which means that readers will pick up this book with absolutely no idea what to expect, other than what s/he reads on the back cover. On one hand, this is good: no preconceived notions.
On the other hand, it’s quite a challenge. Since the reader brings no foundation of knowledge into the story (for example: the universal understanding that vampires eat people), s/he will know only what I tell him/her throughout the course of the book. My job is to make sure this new world makes sense, is fun to read about, and fleshes out the story, rather than defining it.
No pressure, right?
And, of course, that brings with it a whole new set of worries, which I’ve already analyzed ad nauseum. I figure some people will say I’ve successfully avoided writing the same story and characters over and over. And others will say that this series isn’t enough like the Shifters series, and therefore isn’t what they expected/wanted from me. And yet others will find small similarities between these characters and any other characters I’ve ever written (after all, they all have EYES! and NOSES!) and decide that means that I can only write one kind of story/character.
Wow. With all that rolling around in my head non-stop, it’s a wonder I’ve written as much of it as I have. Fortunately, most of the time, these
bits of insanity dripping on me like Chinese water torture doubts don’t usually hit while I’m actually writing. They wait until I’m eating, or watching TV, or trying to sleep to drive me nuts.
But for the record, here’s where the book stands:
And here’s where my November writing goal stands:
Click the image below to see how my CP Rinda Elliott is doing on her November goal. We’re keeping each other company and keeping the craziness at bay.