Those who follow my Facebook page might have seen this already, but I ran into a spot of trouble concerning Hunting in the Shadows‘ Kindle Select status. Long story short, it seems that Kobo Ebooks failed to take it down after I unpublished the Smashwords version (though all the others are down). I’ve contacted Smashwords about it; they have contacted Kobo, and hopefully this will be getting sorted soon. I also contacted Kindle Direct Publishing, explaining the situation, and HitS has a bit of a reprieve; I’ve now got 30 days to make sure Kobo gets their act together. Considering that Kobo’s website has no contact portal for anything but troubleshooting their ereaders, I’m going to have to rely on Smashwords for it; fortunately, Smashwords got back to me within a couple of hours, so that’s a good sign.
Kill Yuan has now been out for two months, and a few people have asked about the next Praetorian book. Lex Talionis is coming, and I’ve started to do a little bit of groundwork for it. I’d hoped to see it out the door by the end of the year; however, depending on how things go over the next couple of months, it might get pushed into early next year.
Here’s why: I just finished a 22k word short story that should be coming out on a major publisher’s website in a couple of months. I can’t say much more than that, but it’s pretty cool. It’s my first collaborative fiction project, and my first time playing in somebody else’s sandbox.
I’m also working on a novel for (hopefully) the same publisher. It’s not sold yet, but the editor has read the pitch and the first chapter (of an early version) and said that she wants to read the finished manuscript. I’m told, by no less a figure than Larry Correia, that this is a good sign. Of course, the overall novel has changed a bit since the initial pitch I sent in. Some of this is because I’ve been working on it off and on since last summer, having put it on the back burner for Kill Yuan, and then again for the short story (which I actually had a hard deadline for). Every time I’ve come back to it after back-burnering it, I’ve been dissatisfied. Some of that is because I need to just knuckle down and finish it. Some of it is because with the initial version, I had two major stories happening in the same novel, and the first one was getting rushed. So, after talking to Mike Kupari about it, the realization came (with Mike’s prompting) that there were actually two separate books there, and the whole thing needed to be expanded into a trilogy. After tearing my hair out with the words, “Dammit, Mike! See what you’ve done!” (to which he laughed and said that spreading discord and making life more difficult for people is just what he does), I outlined the trilogy, threw out a good deal of what I already had written, and got back to work. Hopefully I’ll have the first draft finished and ready to turn in by mid- to late-September. Then I can get working on Lex Talionis.
I can say this much about the fifth Praetorians novel; it probably isn’t going to make me many friends on the political front. A lot of threads, particularly from Alone and Unafraid and The Devil You Don’t Know are going to be coming together and the war is going to come home to the Praetorians in a new way. Those who study classical history and can take a cue from the company name might get a bit of an inkling of what’s coming.
Now, back to work.