The answer is that he prepares things he’s already written so you can get to read them!
So while I might currently be in lazy-mode when it comes to finishing off SNIDE, that does mean I can do some stuff with getting Lore and Order ready for you all. Largely, in this case, it means getting the print version all formatted and everything, which is a longer job than it sounds. To be fair, most of the job is waiting to get a prototype in my hands so I can see it for myself and know that it’s ready, but even then, I can’t release it right away. Once that’s all ready, then the real work begins.
And by real work, I mean someone else’s. That’s when all the PR mumbo jumbo can happen. I’m pretty sure it takes longer to put a book out than it does to write the bloody thing, but I’m also sure that it’s well worth it.
I’m pretty excited to see the cover on an actual book too. It’s such a beautiful cover on a screen, it can only be better on a book!
I did a bit of writing, but I’ve found myself slightly burned out. Not that this is an unexpected thing.
Normally, the books I write have a large gap in them somewhere. More often than not, I write the first chapter or so, and then it sits untouched for a few weeks while my head fills in the gaps. Then, when I come back to it, I’ve got most of the rest scribbled down inside my head. Of course changes happen and the story wanders off on its own, but I have plenty of stuff to work with.
I think that what has happened with SNIDE is that, as I didn’t do that this time, I’ve hit the limit of what was already sorted in my head. So, the simple solution is to slow down for a couple of weeks. Instead of 10k per week, perhaps two weeks of 5k. Let the well refill.
Besides, I have other things to do this week too, like get a haircut and get some photos done. These things clearly require my full attention…
And here it is!
It’s been a long time coming, but finally I think I’ve got something I can run with. Now, to work out release dates and all that business.
Having not done a series yet, I’ve not had to tackle the idea of a rotating cast. With each book being a one-off, the cast is the cast is the cast, but I’ve been reading the Fables comic books again recently, and that’s been going on for long enough that rotating the cast happens organically.
When this sort of thing happens in TV, it is almost always awful. Rarely does it happen because the story demands it, more likely it’s because the actors had better jobs to go off to. The replacements show up and something just doesn’t feel the same.
Maybe this is one of those things where stuff just works differently in TV than in comics or books. Or maybe it’s a problem in all media if you put more effort into the characters than the world. The reason the changing of the guard works in Fables is because the world is so rich, there’s room for infinite numbers of stories and characters. It feels like a world that would go on without a specific character. If your world is centred entirely around one character, the world is going to collapse when you remove him.
I’d quite like to craft the sort of story that can keep going even if I change the guard a little. Maybe I already have.
We all know that we’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, and we all do it anyway. And quite right too – you might not get a completely accurate impression of the book from its cover, but you get an inkling. If, say, it’s done in MS Paint, you can be reasonably assured, for instance, that the author may not have taken the correct care and attention.
Whether this is true or not doesn’t matter, it’s the perception. This is why I like my covers to look good. I couldn’t release Diplomancer without a cover that I thought stood out – which, if statements from many people are to be believed, it does – and the same is true of Lore and Order. The book is ready to go, but it needs the bow atop the package. I’ve got the same guy who did Diplomancer’s cover working on it, and I’m excited to see what he comes up with.
So excited, in fact, that this entire blog post is really just a clandestine way of nagging him.
I watched Starship troopers and Reign of Fire last night. One of those is a very good film. I’m going to talk to you about the other one.
I’d not seen Reign of Fire before, and I was genuinely confused how such a dull film could have such an amazing cast. The entire time I was watching Christian Bale do an English accent – which is weird enough in itself – I was wondering about how, exactly, a man who was in this film gets other jobs.
Don’t get me wrong, everyone in the film acted their hearts out, but surely when that resume comes across your desk you must think what, the guy from that awful dragon film?
There have been films that have killed entire careers, and watching Reign of Fire made me wonder exactly what it is that makes a film one of those. What are the qualities a career derailing film must have over, say, just a bad film?
And then… then I opened TV Tropes. So begins the tale of my eventual death, malnourished and wide-eyed, page after page of trivia being burned into my eye sockets.
It’s not necessarily wise to believe everything you are told on twitter, but I’m only little so I don’t have to be wise. When someone says they’re going to put your book in a library, you tend to believe them.
I’m not going to speak for all writers, because that would be daft, but I will say that I hold a library as more or less the ultimate form of acceptance that, yes, you are a proper writer now. I’m very much on the “libraries are good” bandwagon, as you might guess.
The news also came at the perfect time to re-motivate me to work on SNIDE. I’m writing a lot of dialogue right now, and I always find it difficult to want to do that. It is extremely important that dialogue flows well, which tends to mean lots of rewriting as I go, which I am not happy about. My preferred method is to get it all down and then rewrite it at the end.
But, well, if Diplomancer is going to be in a library, I had better get to work on more things to join it. Can’t have it being all lonely on the shelf now, can we?