I have some news. I finished the first and second drafts of a new short novel. It was supposed to be a long novella but clearly I have a hard time writing them now. It is something entirely new.
It is currently 73,000 words. It is set in medieval France. It is told from only one point of view character, has two named swords, has three light-weavers, four major deaths, five fellowship companions, six dukedoms… and a whole lot of conflict. It is the closest thing to grimdark I will likely ever write. Author Anna Smith Spark called it a “dark love letter to high fantasy.” I think that is about as perfect a description as I will get.
Who will publish it? Who knows? It is a strange little book written for a major Hollywood studio, but we have not signed a contract yet. Everything hinges on that contract when it comes to who will publish it. What’s the title? I can’t say. I have two in mind — one better suited to TV adaptation, one better suited for only a book release. Yes, I wrote this book with an 8-10 episode TV adaptation in mind. Just in case lightning strikes, ya know? When will it publish? No idea, but I would like the Kickstarter to launch in August, with books to ship after the New Year. Got cover art? I sure do, a wrap-around painting done by the amazing Magali Villeneuve. And it is stunning.
What’s the next step? The book is with Betsy Mitchell, former Del Rey Books editor in chief. She will edit it and return it by the end of June. I’ve hired a cartographer for one map, with a potential for two city maps. I’m speaking with several illustrators for interior art. And I’m preparing a chapbook as we speak, one that features the first three chapters. If the Hollywood contract happens, I’ll be giving away chapbooks at SDCC, ECCC, and Rose City Comicon. I will make a handful available online too. More on that in a month or so.
What will I work on now? I have a 8,000-word short story I owe an animation studio who is creating a shared world situation with several bestselling authors you know. Shouldn’t take me long to figure that tale out. Then I’m back to The Everwinter Wraith, with an aim to finish that overdue book this summer.
I’m busy elsewhere too. The Kickstarter for Digger Unearthed by Ursula Vernon will launch on June 1st. Patrick Rothfuss and I have one last meeting today to finalize itty-bitty type stuff and that project will be fully wrapped under the new Underthing Press imprint. More news coming on that front later this week when we reveal the Kickstarter, its tiers, etc.
It’s looking like I’ll be attending Dragonsteel Mini-Con in November in Utah. They invited me and I think it will be great fun. That’s the Brandon Sanderson release party for his new book. I’ll have a booth and will be selling books and chatting up anyone who approaches. Hope to bring some friends. More news on that when I have it.
That’s about it for now. Just trying to maintain self-care and my sanity. Oh, and if you looking for S&N and/or S&L editions of Antiquity Grey and Jak Dreadth, the remaining copies I have will be posted on The Signed Page after I finish shipping out the last 140 Kickstarter pledges this weekend. Be on the look out!