Archive for category Writing Updates

What I’ve Been Doing Lately

Anyone who has been following my work for the past few years knows I’ve been writing YA novels for my Nanotechs and Animus Saga series.  Lately, however, I have taken a break from that—aside from trying to find someone interested in representing the latest one—to work on my other long-term writing project: an original drama pilot for television.  Focusing on the era of the Opium Wars in China, the script grew out of my interest in that period that began with Lin Zexu’s “A Letter to Queen Victoria,” which I assigned to my Academic Writing students.  I joined the Black List website and ran my script through several evaluations, rewriting and revising, discovering how much I really needed a professional opinion to make my work stronger.  And that brings me to my next point.

If I choose to release The End Starts Here myself, it will only be after a professional editor has a chance to evaluate it.  I previously released three novels without much professional oversight, and in the end I regretted certain aspects of each book because of it.  As I’ve grown as a writer over the past few years, what I once saw as the best I can do no longer seems adequate, so I have to set them aside until I can once again be proud of the finished product.  Proving Ground is a notable exception; aside from recent tweaks to make it work as a sequel rather than the first in the series, I remain confident in its quality.  I just need its new lead-in to measure up.

So for those of you still waiting for the next Nanotechs book, please have patience as I take time to revamp the series.  I take the quality of my work very seriously and I want to ensure my readers receive the best books I can create.

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Nanotech Series Update

For those of you waiting for the next installment of the Nanotech series, there is good news and bad news. The good news: I have passed 20,000 words on the new book (Proving Ground is 82,000 for comparison). The bad news: that book is not the sequel, Silver Maiden, but an untitled prequel.

Why would I stop working on Silver Maiden to jump backward? Well, there’s the creative reason and the practical reason. The creative reason is that I always envisioned Proving Ground as a pre-dystopian story that showed how oppressive regimes were created. While I still feel this is the case, I want to show how Quinn’s quest for power really began and the path Leon was forced onto as a result. I also wanted to show what Byron was like before he became a Nanotech without resorting to a long flashback that would likely disrupt Silver Maiden‘s narrative flow. The practical reason—and this is the one that really pushed me to write the prequel—is that I have spent over two years trying to find an agent who would take Proving Ground on and find it a home in the publishing world. Dystopian and dystopian-influenced YA books have so overwhelmed agents that despite some early interest from a few agents, everyone ultimately passed on representing my book. While I’m grateful to everyone who has supported the book in its self-published form, I really need to find this series a publisher so I don’t have terribly long gaps between books as I struggle to find time to write. I also think some professional guidance would benefit the series and ultimately improve the reading experience for my fans. All of this had led me to the conclusion that if I want the Nanotech series to stand out from the crowd, I need to begin with a book that is distinctly not dystopian but rather contemporary sci-fi action centered around a teen love story.

For those disappointed by this news, please give the new book a chance. Many of Proving Ground‘s characters make an appearance and you will learn new things about them. I also believe you will like the newcomers, as I have really enjoyed writing Delia so far. For those of you excited about this news, thank you and I will work hard to make it worth the wait.

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Silver Maiden Update

Anyone who has read Proving Ground knows that its sequel, Silver Maiden, was supposed to be released in 2013.  That was my projected date for completion and release, but it was a bit shortsighted because I actually write two YA series: the Nanotech series and The Animus Saga.  Book II of The Animus Saga took quite a bit longer to finish than I predicted, thus pushing back the release of Silver Maiden.  I apologize for the inconvenience and I hope to have the book done by the end of 2014.  Whether or not that happens depends on a number of factors, some of which I cannot control.  If you loved Proving Ground, please spread the word and share the love and stay tuned for more updates.  Thank you for your support.

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