Hi again. Been awhile since I did a regular blog so here we go. I’m so glad you all love the cover for Bone Magic—I’m over the moon ecstatic about it and so happy. It’s perfect, and fits the mood of the book so well.
Next: for my Facebook friends, please do not IM my assistant when she’s taking care of my account. I’ve instructed her to ignore any IMs because her time is to be spent helping me, not chatting. Please leave all questions on the wall or in a message for me and she’ll relay them to me for answering in blogs.
Which brings me to: I’ve reached a point again where I’ll be answering most questions I get from MS, Twitter, and FB on my blog. Please rest assured, I’ll see them, and answer what I can here. I’m exhausted from finishing NightMyst and the Demon Mistress promo, and need to consolidate time, and time is a valuable commodity for me anymore. Also: there is far more information on both my website and the fan site than you will ever, ever find here, on MySpace, or Facebook or any other social networking site so always check if you don’t know. Check before asking simple questions like ‘when is the next book out’…and if you look on my MySpace profile—really look at the banners—you’ll see the dates there.
So yes, I did finish Night Myst, and it’s on my editor’s desk and I so hope she likes it because I love it. I’m going to start work in about a week on Harvest Hunting—Delilah’s third book.
Time for Reader Questions:
First: rumor control time again!
No, the OW series is NOT ending with book number 9, not if everything falls into place when it comes time for a new contract. Just because I’m only contracted through book 9 doesn’t mean that’s the last one. Please, sign up for my newsletter on the front page of my website and you’ll get current news each month, plus a few little extras. Or check my website when in doubt. If the news doesn’t come through me or official channels such as Samwise or my assistant Justine, then don’t repeat or believe it until you find out for sure.
And no—Bone Magic is not going to be hardback—it will be paperback. Yes, I’d love to go HB—it’s such a cool thing to hold a HB in hand (I love them and buy my fave authors in them), but that is not what’s planned for me at this time. It’s up to the publisher, not the author, and I asked and they said paperback so yes, you’ll be able to pick up both Bone Magic and Inked instead of thinking about one or the other.
And no, Demon Mistress was NOT a standalone book in the OW series—it was definitely in the story arc and was book 6. Bone Magic is book 7, and follows on the heels of Demon Mistress.
Now to reader questions:
Question: When will you put your Sims characters/houses up through Sims Exchange?
Answer: Well, I’ll at least do screenshots as soon as I recreate them in Sims 3. The one problem I have is that sometimes, they don’t have the variations I really need, but with Sims 3, it will be much easier to make them. And I’ll think about the Sims Exchange in the meantime.
Someone on Twitter asked Delilah (yes, the sisters have an account there): What’s your favorite catnip toy?
Answer: I can tell you that Delilah’s favorite toys are catnip fuzzy mice, and bugs that are crunchy and oh-so-good-to-munch! ~grins~
People have been asking how Morgana’s doing. Our vet agreed with me that she was a good three weeks younger than we were told when we got her, which would have put her at around the tail end of 5 weeks when we picked her up. I figured that—she was soooo tiny and still looking for Mama. She’s blossomed out over the past month since we brought her home. She’s happy and perky and loves her sisters, and she follows them everywhere. Everybody’s accepted her now—I even caught Meerclar and Morgana (whom we call Morgan for short) playing the Chase-Me—Chase-You game today! It’s wonderful to have a full house again. I put together a slide show the other day of the Gurlz. Enjoy!
I’m on the last mile, the last gasp. Somewhere, ahead, is the buried treasure and I’ve got to get there and rescue it by deadline or I’m in trouble. Along the way, I’m fighting off the Maleficent Seven—Exhaustion, Temptation, Backache, Eyestrain, Tendonitis, Sleep-Deprivation, and Self-doubt. Yep, we’re meeting at the corral, and it’s either me…or them.
So yes, once again I’m down to the wire with a book. No matter how much time I have, I seem to fill it with the current project. Although to be fair to myself, this was the first book in a new series and they always take longer—in my opinion—because of the worldbuilding and finding the new characters’ voices and so forth. Especially when you’re an organic writer and you don’t really follow an outline or much of a synopsis.
I’m at the end, though, of Night Myst, the first Indigo Court book, and am just finishing up final revisions before I send it to my editor. At this point, sleep becomes moot, my mind is totally filled with the book, and I'm going through looking for everything that could jar the reader out of the world. I'm fine-tuning, editing, revising, nitpicking...making sure the damned thing works, and I'm working a good 14-16 hours a day on it.
And I’m proud of it so far—it’s what I wanted it to be, though not what I expected it to be. How’s that possible? Because I go in with a mood in mind, a vision of a painting or scene and the basic knowledge of the main characters, and I try to create that mood, the ‘feeling’ that the idea tackled me with. And even though along the way all sorts of characters join the dance, and events happen that I never planned to happen, if I come out with a story that’s solid and strong and where the mood resonates with my initial vision, then I know I’ve done my job.
Each book I write has a playlist and that begins before I even put one word on the page. The playlist is usually long, and built around the mood I was talking about, and it too, evolves, through the writing of the book. Songs are deleted, songs are added, one or two songs will come through as the theme songs for the book. You can find the playlist for every book that I’ve written since Witchling on my website, by the way, under the individual book’s description. Before Witchling, I didn’t write much to music—I wasn’t writing in a genre in which I was all that comfortable with and couldn’t focus on music and the work too. But over the past few years, that’s all changed.
For Night Myst, the three main ‘theme’ songs became:
Half Light by Low and tomanandy (the main song from the Mothman Prophecies, a freaky-assed movie I saw that has a similar mood to what I wanted to evoke from the book)
The Angel Wars by Gary Numan (my fave singer of all time…sigh….)
When I get to this point in the book, I want it done. All done. And yet, I inevitably begin to cry when I’m finished and press that ‘send’ button and ship off the manuscript to my editor. It’s like opening the door and kicking your baby out into the wide, big world and you pray that you’ve given it all that it needs to not only survive, but thrive.
And since I make it a rule to write clean, I want my editor to call me after she’s read it and say, “Great job! I love it!” This happens each time, each time revisions are few, but it’s because I’ve worked my butt off to make sure that I write tight, that everything is consistent, that I’ve caught as many of the potential gaffes as possible.
And then, I play for a little bit. Because facing the Maleficent Seven isn’t easy, and by the end I feel a little like a punching bag. My back hurts, my arms ache, I have the concentration of an ADD kitten on espresso, I want pampered, I’m lonely for my characters and missing them already (which goes away the moment I start the next book on the other series), and I desperately want to get out of my head—take me away, anywhere but where I have to make decisions that can shatter worlds and lives. At this point, I just want to spend my time watching movies, gaming, eating chocolate and comfort food, dragging my husband into the bedroom--all activities where I can feel but not have to really think.
So yes, I’m almost to the end of revisions on Night Myst, book one of the Indigo Court Series, and I’m going to be desperately frantic till my editor reads it and tells me I didn’t miss the mark. And I’m going to play hard until, about 7-10 days from now I suddenly realize the voices in my head are speaking loud and clear, and there’s a new deadline on the calendar, and it’s time to dive back into the sisters’ world and begin Harvest Hunting, the 8th OW book--Delilah’s new adventure…and then, once again, I’ll immerse myself in words and worlds, and I’ll make lives and shatter lives, and lose myself in a different reality for another few months.
Good morning. Okay, a few things for the blog today.
First: I’m on major deadline crunch now—down to the wire, so this is short.
Second: thank you again, everybody—you’ve all been so enthusiastic and supportive about me hitting the short list of the NYT. And yes, I most definitely DO have a goal of hitting the top 10—but that takes a widespread audience, and I’m knocking wood it’s not too far in the future. ~grins~
Third: I’m so glad you guys love Demon Mistress! I was hoping you’d have fun with it. I’ve heard one or two grumbles about it not being as intense as Darkling, and I’m sorry that the readers felt that way, but here’s the facts: my characters evolve.
They don’t stay the same. And Menolly shed a huge chip on her shoulder when she offed Dredge. So, she’s free to move forward and make her life more than just a dark, angry existence. All the characters evolve and grow in my books—or at least, I hope they do, because for me, it keeps the storyline active and thriving. I’d be bored writing the same exact mood over and over.
Fourth: A rumor came up and someone left me a note that she heard Bone Magic would be hardback. As far as I know, this is false.
Bone Magic will be paperback like the others, unless something drastically changes. I checked on this and want to quell the worry now. Of course, as an author I’d LOVE to have hardback releases—I love hardback and buy my faves in hardback whenever I can. But for my books, that’s not the case right now. (And no, authors don’t have control over getting into the book clubs where you are released in hardback editions).
Fifth: Don’t forget my party/contest on my contest blog! It’s going on till July 5th.
Question: Why do publishers have to release books on the same day? Seriously. All I can think is Demon Mistress or Skin Trade. How do you choose which book to read when the authors are both your favorites?
Answer: Because it simply is easier for the publisher to release books in groups. I believe each imprint has a specific ‘day’ when their books for the month are released. For Berkley—the house I’m in—it happens to be the first Tuesday of each month. My advice would be to read Demon Mistress, of course. *grins* But in actuality—it comes down to what you want to read most at the time, or buy both and read both simultaneously. My TBR pile keeps growing and growing and I just add the books on as they come out.
I’m having a party with the D’Artigo girls to celebrate our jump onto the short list of the NEW YORK TIMES!!! It’s going to be a blast, and you’re all invited. And because the actual list will be printed in the paper on the 21st—Litha, the Summer Solstice, and since Demon Mistress takes place right around Litha—we’re having a theme party with one hell of a great door prize.
Why a prize? To thank everybody who helped me by buying the book when it came out—because y’all are the reason I HIT the short list. And to thank all of my readers over the years who’ve stuck with me, through the various genres, watching me slowly manage to find my way into the genre I love and have wanted to be in. And to thank my new readers, who read the latest book and ran out to buy the others. So yeah, a party and a contest. ~grins~
Now, the actual contest takes place on my contest blog because this is for one hell of a cool prize—and because the contest will run from now through midnight July 5th. So hop over to my contest blog to enter. And enjoy Demon Mistress—and when you see Bone Magic, it should have “New York Times Bestselling Author” above my name, which is something I’ve been working toward for so very many years. (Remember: do NOT enter here, go to my contest blog)
*Dances off singing “We’ll be dancing in the streets…..”* ~the Painted Panther~ ~Yasmine~
So my editor calls today and says, “Are you sitting down?”
And then proceeds to tell me that Demon Mistress is #16 on the New York Times short list!!!! I’m now an NYT bestselling author, people, and I have my loyal readers who buy my books to thank for it. The print list will be in the paper on June 21st, 2009.
So here’s to you—when I’m celebrating tonight, I’ll be raising a toast to all of you—because I couldn’t do it without you!
If you've friended me at MySpace and are waiting, be patient. We've had one hell of a week and are finally getting things sorted out. And if you won a contest or something from the Diabetes Auction--I'll be getting it out ASAP over the next week.
Okay, so last week, my computer decided to start turning itself off. When it wanted. Barring the off chance I had a ghost in my house, I decided that it was time for a new computer—I’d been planning on a new one later this year and the fact that I lost half a chapter of work and my computer had developed a mind of its own, well, that upped the schedule.
So, a little frantic due to being on deadline and facing possibly having lost all my work since I didn’t know whether the computer had fried or not last time it turned off, off we go last week to the computer store. Buy new system (and might I add, it’s a kick butt one), and take old computer in.
They figure out that apparently there was such a build up of dust and cat fuzz in my computer that, yes, it had either overheated or something. Whatever the case, they managed to clean it and save everything on there and now my old computer is spare—just in case. I also bought an external hard drive for backup.
Spent days loading programs, and part of Friday and all day yesterday loading data from old computer onto new one. Still a few things to tweak, but essentially, here I am.But you can tell we got hit by the last wave of Mercury retrograde as it vanished. My mother-in-law (whom we both love dearly—Sam’s stepmom) is visiting. Her plane was delayed in Hilo, which meant that she missed her flight to San Francisco, and when she got there to SF, she was wait-listed TWICE (this woman is very smart, very sharp, but she *is* a senior citizen and that is just wrong), and finally got her around 1:00 yesterday. We picked her up and by then, my back was aching from stress and trying to write on a laptop.
So we stopped at Whole Foods to grab some lunch, I take three steps away from the car and promptly go skidding across the sidewalk when my foot moves but my shoe didn't.Skinned one elbow, have a nasty huge bruise across my left palm, strained (but not sprained) right ankle, and mostly--threw left hip out so it hurts like hell. Going to call chiro today and see if he can take me in on an emergency appt. Nothing a little time won't heal, except to my dignity, but man, it was *not* fun and I ache. Need backrubs. Need warm baths. Need lots of kitteh love.
So, people, I hope you’re enjoying Demon Mistress—and now I just wait to see about lists and reader reaction, and all sorts of stuff like that.
First: I hope you’re enjoying Demon Mistress! I’m crossing my fingers it’s showing up in stores now (yesterday was the release date) and will let you know if there’s good news when I find out (as in: making lists, etc.).
Second: one last contest here, though I do plan on holding a special contest if Demon Mistress hits the lists big (and I mean the ‘short list’ by that). But tomorrow, I will be over at Bitten By Books answering questions and comments. You need to RSVP before then, and follow their instructions. I’ll be giving away a $50 online BN gift certificate and a $25 online BN gift certificate. So some good swag there!
Third: I’m in deadline hell as well as waiting-for-the-lists angst. *grins* Oh yeah, it all comes at once. So this is shorter today.
I promised I’d blog about Morgana and let me tell you, she IS a cutie. Still not fully socialized but we are making headway and she just adores her sisters. I’ve got some great pictures and I’ll probably blog about her next week when things are back to “normal”…whatever that may be! LOL
It’s lovely here, warm (almost too warm and yeah, here in the Pacific Northwest we complain when it’s too cold and when it’s too hot *grins*). My mother-in-law is coming in this weekend and I’m happy, she’s a peach and we love her dearly. And other than that, I’m just trying to maintain an even keel until next week. ~smiles~