It's been quite a while since I posted a blog, but in the meantime, I've been quite busy. The end of last year was crazy, between Thanksgiving and Christmas, traveling between NH, MD, and NY, and the fact that Josh works for a giant retail company and had to work a bajillion extra hours. Then when the new year rolled around, I went all in, head down, on my newest project, Land of Szornyek, Book 1: Tentacles and Teeth. I'm really excited about it, and I'm thrilled to finally be sharing it with you!
Watch out for monsters.
So, where to start? Usually I start with monsters, because that's pretty cool, so, here's a monster pic:
A couple of years ago I came up with this idea: what if the apocalypse were caused by the sudden and inexplicable appearance of crazy big and terrifying monsters, unlike anything humans had ever seen before? What would that look like? How would people survive? It contains all of the traditional aspects of an apocalyptic tale--mass population die-off, struggling to survive off the land, raiding cities and towns for resources, trying to rebuild despite the new challenge, etc., but with monsters.
So I started writing. I finished the rough draft of the first book a year and a half ago, but I couldn't do anything with it because something was wrong with it, I just didn't know what. So I set it aside and continued working on my other projects (All In: A Prequel, and The Polylocus Problem) and then came back to it. Then, it hit me (like a boomerang).
Guess what the problem was.
I had written the wrong book! I accidentally wrote Book 2 of Land of Szornyek (Called City of Dod) instead of Book 1. Oops, lol. (Fun fact: this is a common problem for me.)
So I went back to my desk and started at the actual beginning, this time finishing up Tentacles and Teeth in a surprisingly short amount of time.
But I had a new problem: it was weird. Each chapter had a new monster and its own complete story, and I wanted to do something different with it, as opposed to just releasing it like I do every other book.
Patreon is a really cool new platform, designed to allow regular everyday people to become patrons of the arts. Its set up to be extremely affordable, but so that artists and authors and musicians can rely on a certain amount of money each time they create something new.
It had other benefits too. For example, during my writing process I had created myriad world-building materials--sketches of monsters, characters, and scenes; maps of the world I was building; plot maps, a guidebook of monsters for the curious, plus I was working on the audio versions. I wanted a way to share all of this with the people who were excited about the project, and Patreon offered that as well--a members only space to get access to new content, free fun stuff like drawings and whatnot, discussions about the work, and more.
So that's what I've done.
You can check out the Patreon page here and take a look at the different levels of patronship available.
Now, I recognize that this kind of thing isn't for everybody, so never fear. Eventually, once the entire serial has been released, I will be re-releasing it as an omnibus so that everyone else can read it as well (in the written and audio formats). That probably won't be for another year, though, so you'll have to hold your horses :)
I'm really excited.
I just want to end by saying (again) that I'm really excited about this project. Like, Josh is kind of tired of me talking about it constantly (though endlessly supportive), and I have monster drawings all over my house, and I'm even thinking of having a party about it, I'm so excited (and I'm not a party person). I really, really, really want to share an excerpt too, but I can't, because patrons get to see it first!
But keep your eyes peeled: I'll be doing a bunch more talking about it on social media; in particular, on Wednesday, May 9th at 6:00 PM EST, I will be doing a Facebook Live video (click here for link), so you can come chat me up, ask questions, and learn a bit more about the project!
Below, I've also pulled in the video I made to explain the whole Patreon thing, so check it out :)