Category Archives: State of Monday

The State of Monday – July 1

Welcome to July (also known as, “shit, how is it July already?”)! Last week was pretty good for the writing. I had a very useful phone conversation with my editor (the great and powerful Anne Sowards) in the middle of the week.

Maybe it’s a little bit of a power move that she insists on using this thing whenever she talks with me, but, hey, whatever works.

Maybe it’s a little bit of a power move that she insists on using this thing whenever she talks with me, but, hey, whatever works.

We talked about where I’m planning on taking Book 3. This was a pretty important phone call, since when Roc bought the three books, the purchases on #2 and #3 were based on a set of proposals, plus an over-series arc document. Iron Night is similar in most major points to its proposal, but the problem is that there are a few really BIG events that were in the Book 3 proposal that I just didn’t feel should happen yet. They needed more prep before I could get to them.

How big are these events? Well, about as big as the giant balloon that Anne Sowards does all of her business travel in. It’s slow, but she gets great mileage.

How big are these events? Well, about as big as the giant balloon that Anne Sowards does all of her business travel in. It’s slow, but she gets great mileage.

Anne agreed with me, and I had a really productive week of outlining. I’ve cleared up one of the thornier areas of the main plot, and now I’m just figuring out how some of the ongoing plots will fit in around it. The timing is going really well on this, since on Saturday I’ll be heading down to one of my favorite places in the world for a six-day solo vacation – can you guess the place?

Newport, RI. My family starting going down for a week every summer when I was about 4, and I actually lived there for a full year on my own. Newport is both one of my favorite settings in the Fortitude Scott books and a really important place in its creation. I finished the first draft of Generation V in Newport in the summer of 2011. In the summer of 2012, I’d just sold the series to Roc, and I thrashed out the full outline of Iron Night during my time there. This summer I’m hoping to get a chunk of writing done on Book 3.

Here are two pictures from last summer. Isn’t it great?

Here are two pictures from last summer. Isn’t it great?

My schedule in Newport is pretty basic – I get up in the morning, eat breakfast and read on the porch. Then I come inside and write for a few hours, breaking for lunch. In the early afternoon I take a break and head down to the town – I walk all over, looking in shops, checking out what has changed, until I’m exhausted and sweaty. Early dinner at the Newport Creamery (greasy spoon diner and decent eating for a writer on a budget – plus, Awful Awfuls!), then back to the keyboard. Time out on the porch to enjoy the sunset. Work until I’m tired, then to bed. Repeat until vacation is over.

It’s wonderful – though my brother usually calls me a few times to make sure I haven’t gone all The Shining on my own.

This year I’ll be leaving Newport on a Friday – the same Friday as my first convention! I’m really excited to be attending ConnectiCon – I’m on two panels, plus I’m going to get a chance to sign copies of Generation V! Plus I also get to attend a convention – yay! If you’re planning on attending ConnectiCon, drop me a note so that we can meet up!

So that’s what’s going on with me (and why there won’t be a State of Monday next week), on to the important stuff – what’s going on with the books! Firstly, Generation V is up to 22 reviews over at Amazon. Amazon also has a new format which I’m not especially thrilled about – I find it really visually annoying, and it kind of pisses me off to have to click on something to see basic book info like where something was published. But, hey, I guess when I’m a global conglomerate with billions in assets, I can complain then, right?

Two really great reviews of Generation V – one from Kristin over at My Bookish Ways, and the other that I found over at bookistry. Also, Candace from Candace’s Book Blog is having a guest post and giveaway extravaganza, and she was nice enough to ask me to add a post. I had a lot of fun doing it, so check out My Top Ten Favorite Books So Far This Year — because, really, I’ve never been able to do a Top Ten list of favorite books of all time. I remember getting really frustrated over that once back in 8th grade, and let me tell you, I’ve read a *shit-ton* of books since then. It’s not getting any easier. But favorite books read in a six month period? That I could get a fun handle on. Oh, and you should also check out my list because Candace is running a giveaway of a signed copy of Generation V. So, free stuff!

I’ll be guest blogging tomorrow at That’s What I’m Talking About for their Urban Fantasy Summer Reading Celebration ) — they have a pretty great lineup of books to raffle off, and they’ll also be talking about some of my favorite authors.

Speaking of summer fun – check out the Blogger Summer Circus Giveaway Hop. There are a lot of great blogs involved, but start off at one I like very much – Danielle at Coffee and Characters is the ringmaster, and she also has a lineup of cover reveals, and I’m *very* flattered that she included Iron Night as one that she’s really looking forward to! Believe me, I’m *dying* to find out what people think of it, and January feels like forever and a day, but it’s with the copyeditor now, who will no doubt point out about fifty problems that I was completely unaware of. (last time favorites included the fact that the gun Fort was using held about four more bullets than I thought it did – so the final version ended up with four more shots to explain how he emptied his gun)

Speaking of the Iron Night cover….

…my own… my precious…

…my own… my precious…

…it was included in the All Things Urban Fantasy Cover Art Coverage! They had 36 covers to get through (whoa!) but were nice enough to include Iron Night. The entry is worth checking out on its own (I love reading their cover art posts), but here’s what was said about Iron Night:

Chris says:

The covers for this series suck. A lot. They’re boring as all get out. That’s especially sad since this is a tremendous series.

Did you hear that? Chris says that this is a “tremendous series”! Woo!

Kristina says:

While I will always applaud sensible clothes and just plain clothes on a model this is kind of boring. He looks like he’s just taking a stroll with his gun.

“Taking a stroll with his gun” would be the best kickoff to an animated Disney song EVER! (wait, didn’t that already happen in Pocahontas?) But, yes, I am continually relieved at Fort’s state of dress on these covers – ie, his commitment to wearing shirts. Actually, this cover got even safer, since he now has a tee *and* a long-sleeve shirt! That’s smart layering, Fort!

Jennifer says:

The V in the background is why I’m giving this cover the middle. My interest is peaked by it alone.

I’m a huge fan of that background V. Yes, it has flummoxed a few people, since the official series name is American Vampire, not Generation V, but I was seriously worried around title time that my series didn’t have themed titles, and I think that the artist did a fantastic job of using that V to tie them together. Bravo!

Fun side story – I was on the phone with my brother last night, and I asked what he thought of the new cover. Typical brother, he didn’t even know I *had* a website (right on the book! Argh!), but it turned out to be a win, since then I got to listen in realtime to his cover reaction! (once he scrolled past last week’s fluffy dog – not my cover, btw). It was hysterically funny, and I wrote it down to share with all of you:

My Brother says:

WHAT? He went from film theory geek to Die Hard! And why is he carrying a sawed-off shotgun?!

I’m going to call that a thumbs up.

That’s about it – but remember that tomorrow is the debut of Django Wexler’s The Thousand Names (#5 on my list of books I read this year, btw). According to SF Signal:

I would wholeheartedly recommend The Thousand Names, not only to fans of fantasy but also to fans of military fiction of all types. Fans of Steven Erikson, David Drake, Glen Cook, Naomi Novik, Tom Kratman, Jack Campbell, David Weber, and John Ringo take note – there’s a new military fiction cowboy in town and his name is Django.

Django Wexler. The new military fiction cowboy in town.

Django Wexler. The new military fiction cowboy in town.

And if you’re buying The Thousand Names, why not take the opportunity to pick up Generation V as well?

After all, mine has more cats than Django does.

After all, mine has more cats than Django’s does.

The State of Monday – June 24

The Iron Night edits are done! Now the manuscript is in the hands of the copyeditor. I don’t know whether it will be the same copyeditor who handled Generation V (Dan Larsen), but I’ll probably see it back in maybe 1-3 months. The good thing is that all of the major plot events are now basically locked in, so I can move forward to work on Book 3 and not worry about anything from Iron Night suddenly changing.

It was a mostly quiet week – one great interview was posted at Fantasy Book Critic – this is a great interview to check out. Mihir read and enjoyed Generation V, and he put together some absolutely fantastic questions, several of which I’d never been asked before! Lots of fun. Danielle over at Coffee and Characters did a great cover reveal for Iron Night. It’s very exciting and gratifying to know that people are looking forward to the Generation V sequel!

I also set up a Goodreads giveaway for one signed copy of Generation V — the hope there is that some people will learn about it from the Goodreads giveaway page and be interested enough to want to buy it if they don’t win the copy (or, even better, be so interested that they can’t even wait for the contest to end, and must get a hold of it immediately).

Great news from Amazon! Generation V is now up to 21 reviews! That’s really great, since it puts it past that 20 marker that I was told was really important. Thanks so much to everyone who posted a review!

Speaking of Amazon – an interesting article here is making the rounds on Twitter today. I’m certainly a fan of brick & mortars bookstores, and I actually worked for two years in a really lovely independent bookstore, so I do understand how important it is to support places other than Amazon. But at the same time I’m also very aware of how important Amazon is for my books. It’s an interesting conundrum. However, I can quite certainly do better in posting book links that aren’t solely to Amazon – so here is where you can buy Generation V from IndieBound and I’ve added that to the main book info page as well!

That’s just about all the news I’ve got, so back to work!

This is one of my reference photos from when I was writing Iron Night. Look at that adorable little Bichon Frise – it wants you to buy a copy of Generation V

This is one of my reference photos from when I was writing Iron Night. Look at that adorable little Bichon Frise – it wants you to buy a copy of Generation V