I started this post back on April 9th and I kept getting side tracked. Now, of course, most of what I was going to post is outdated. That’s what I get for procrastinating.
So let me start over again…
Streets of Payne is off to the Red Adept for editing! After a few rewrites, and going through a couple of beta readers, I finally turned it in for the professional hack-n-slash. Then the real work begins. In the meantime, I’ve been working with Glendon Haddix at Streetlight Graphics on the cover art. After my extreme disappointment with my previous cover artist, Glendon has been a pleasure to work with. He’s very professional, communicative, and prompt with his replies. In fact, it’s usually him waiting on me for information, rather than the other way around. He’s already sent me preliminary concept pieces for the new cover, and I think we’re rolling right along. I can’t wait to see what the final artwork is going to look like.
In the meantime, Edward Lorn and I have begun our collaboration novel, Chucklers. This one is starting out to be an incredibly exciting undertaking. Ed and I get the unusual experience of feeding off of each other’s writing, as each of us pens the story from the POV of a different character. He writes a chapter from the perspective of Character 1, then passes the manuscript off to me. I follow with a chapter from Character 2’s perspective, and send it back to him. We have our main plot in mind (insofar as we know where we start, what the main crisis is, what we want our characters to do in a broad sense, and where we want them to end up), but as for how we get from A to Z… well, therein lies the story.
Something I noticed right away is that working with a co-author allows me to avoid the author’s enemy, writer’s block. It keeps the story fresh in my head, especially since I never know for sure how Ed is going to react to what I’ve written. If I have my character decide to take the interstate to get to location XYZ, Ed might decide that it could be fun for his character to get lost and end up fifty miles away when his car breaks down. It’s a subtle thing, but can change the whole dynamic of the story. Another big plus is how quickly the writing goes. With two of us writing various interlocking pieces, we’ve managed to write more than twenty-one thousand words in less than two weeks! At this rate, we should have the first draft done in a few months.
Assuming we actually manage to meet that relatively optimistic goal, that would mean I get to start Y12 (my planned HPM sequel) around July or so. I’ve had several people ask me in various venues when the next HPM book is coming, and I’ve never really been able to say. So here it is. Third quarter of this year will begin my journey back into the world of Half Past Midnight. And if it flows as well as I hope, I should be able to finish the first draft before the end of the year. Much of the story is already laid out in my mind, though there are admittedly some key plot elements that seem to be missing (or maybe they’re already there, and it’s part of my mind that’s missing).
At any rate, that’s the quick update. Now to get back to work.
Stay safe, everyone!