Hey everyone! I'll keep it brief this month, as we're right at the beginning of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), and I've got a lot of writing to get done!
Thank you to everyone who's been reading these monthly chapters! It truly means a lot, and I don't think you'll be disappointed with where the story is going. The plan for now is to continue releasing chapters at the current rate of one per month, but next year I'll speed up publication as I get closer to releasing the novel in its complete form.
I made a huge push to get those last couple of chapters done in October, because now that NaNoWriMo is here, it's time to start working on a new project!
Second Dance of the Sibling Suns (a.k.a. Sibling Suns 2)
That's right, it's finally time to jump back into the mad, mad mind of Grim (and some others you'll recognize from An Ocean of Others, though they haven't lost quite so many marbles as Grim). The goal, as is tradition, is to hit 50,000 words by the end of the month. I think I have a good shot at it this year – the whole novel is planned out already – but it's a tough goal. I'm not a particularly fast writer, opting for relatively clean first drafts instead.
Still, I'll give it my best. And if I don't hit the goal, that might mean good news for some of you. I'll leave it, rather cryptically, at that.
If you'd like to follow along with my progress, I'm keeping track of it in this Twitter thread:
Each night, I'll post my daily word count, some thoughts about how the day went and where the book is going, and occasionally, some photos I'm using for inspiration while writing!
Just four days into NaNo and two-and-a-half chapters in, I'm already loving this story. I learned so much writing Grave of the Waiting, and now I'm applying those lessons to make Sibling Suns 2 a bigger, better, and more emotionally impactful story than I've ever written before.
My motivation for writing has never been higher, so I should have some good news for you about my progress in the final newsletter of the year next month.
Looking back at last year's NaNo, I finished the first 30,000 words of Grave of the Waiting and had all kinds of excuses about why I didn't write every single day of the month. I'll reiterate what my uncle used to say:
Excuses are like butts. Everyone has 'em, and they all stink.
No excuses this year.
An Ocean of Others Update
One of the things motivating me most is the reception to An Ocean of Others.
Sales have been a steady ~3±2 copies per day, but there are two huge bumps. The first is the book's release, which I was already really happy with! But that got blown out of the water last month when I ran the book's first price promotion and we hit #5 and #6 in the Free Kindle Store for the Dark Fantasy Horror and Epic Fantasy categories.
Kindle Unlimited readership has been very good as well, equivalent to about 35 people reading the book from cover to cover.
The numbers are unbelievable. Like, I'm still stunned by how many copies are out in the world. Not just stunned, but incredibly humbled by and grateful for everyone's interest in the book.
I'm sharing all this only in the interest of transparency, so you know a bit of where my mind is at. Lest we ever forget, I don't know what I'm doing. I'm still on a path of learning, and I hope by sharing my experience, some of you can learn with me. To quote the Stranger from LOTR: Rings of Power (which I seem to have enjoyed more than most people!):
Alone, it's just a journey. Now, adventures? They must be shared.
Thank you for joining me on this adventure, stumbles and missteps and all. With the First Dance of the Sibling Suns in nearly 1000 peoples' hands, I admit I feel some not-inconsiderable pressure to make sure Sibling Suns 2 has an extra layer of polish. I don't want to let anyone down. I also have a fairly tight, no-longer-just-self-imposed deadline. It's going to be an exciting and challenging (and probably terrifying) year, and it all begins with NaNoWriMo.
If you missed your chance to download a copy of the book for free, fret not! You'll have another opportunity from Nov. 15 to Nov. 17, when I'll be running the second and final price promotion of the year. I won't be sending out any more emails until our usual bout in early December, so be sure to follow me on a social media site of your choosing for a reminder when we get closer to the sale.
Speaking of sales...
The Legend of Black Jack - On sale for $0.99
Fellow author A.R. Witham put out his debut fantasy novel, The Legend of Black Jack, in May this year, and the Kindle version is currently on sale for $0.99. Featuring 21 full-page illustrations and rave reviews from literally everyone I know who's read this, you'll definitely want to pick this up while it's discounted!
The Chronicles of Narnia meets Pirates of the Caribbean as a foster kid from Chicago is whisked away to the magical world of Keymark, where he discovers a world of samurai, necromancers, elves, talking animals, and dragons.
Jack Swift remembers everything—even the horrible things he’d like to forget. To keep his guilt-ridden memories from haunting him, and to dodge his abusive foster mom, he buries himself in any book he can find, dreaming of his ultimate escape: becoming a doctor.
But fate has another escape in mind.
At 3:33 am on his fourteenth birthday, Jack is kidnapped by a monstrous talking rhinoceros and whisked away to another sphere of existence: the land of Keymark. Though this world is filled with pixies, monsters, pirates, knights, and mythical wonders, it is without healing magic—that magic was stolen by an evil, immortal prince hell-bent on domination. With no understanding of medical science to heal their wounds or illnesses, Jack’s kidnappers ask the impossible of him: use his knowledge to save a life…or be trapped in this bizarre world with no chance of rescue.
Jack doesn’t have secret magic, a great destiny, or any medical experience.
Why do they all expect him to become a legend?
Last time I highlighted an indie author in the newsletter, it was a few days too late, and we had missed the sale. This time, you still have a chance! I don't know how long A.R. will be running it for, so you'd better not wait.
New Release - Strangers in the Promised Land
Finally, my friend Jim Wilbourne has just released a novella that continues the chronicle of The Continua Chronicles, started in his epic debut, The Seventh Cadence. I really enjoyed The Seventh Cadence, and love a good quick read, so I picked up a signed copy, which came just in time to be included here!
A tense and suspenseful sequel to The Seventh Cadence
After the battle at the Shadow Peaks, Amie and Mara Kruv are left with nothing but the scant clothes on their backs and an injured horse. Thinking that they’ve finally struck a bit of luck, the sisters run into three soldiers who agree to escort them home. But there is more to these soldiers than they realize, and they find themselves as the unwitting accomplices to three deserters of the Deseran Dominion army.
You can pick up your own signed copy (which comes with some cute stickers!) from the author's website below, or you can grab a copy from Amazon.
That's it from me this month. Wish me luck in hitting 50,000 words, and I'll see you in December! As always, thanks for reading!