Howdy, folks. Just a quick note to confirm that the Editorial Letter is in my hand and first round revisions have begun in earnest. My intention is to turn around the new draft of BoAT by Christmas. Only then, when Inkshares can assess how well I have executed on said revisions, will it be time for a serious conversation about a release date.

But a wordsmith can dream, can’t he? My hope would be a release for the fall of 2020, but we will see. I REPEAT – that is my hope, not a given. It may even be wildly unrealistic, but we will see where we stand in the new year.

What is the significance of next fall? Each October, Ottawa plays host to CAN•CON – the Conference on Canadian Content in Speculative Arts and Literature. This is the place to cross paths with authors, gamers, poets and illustrators of fantasy, science fiction and horror. The creative community of the National Capital Region turns out in force, joined by colleagues and special guests from across Canada and the U.S. I support CAN•CON on the media relations side as a volunteer and am also a recurring panelist.

It would be fantastic to have a launch event for BoAT at CAN•CON 2020!

But before we get there, there is lots of work to do. For Inkshares, it’s not just about how quickly we can arrive at a strong and polished product, but when it makes the best business sense to launch it into the market.

For now, my focus must be on taking to heart the awesome insight that my editor, Sarah, has provided on the manuscript and forging ahead with those revisions. She has made great observations about some things I need to work on with character and pacing and effectively getting the reader oriented and grounded in this world that I have created.

But while there is still much work to do, Sarah’s overall assessment of the manuscript was as follows:

“Bane of All Things is an exciting, rich novel that creates a truly vivid and complex world that is original and interesting. Obviously, comparisons will be drawn between your novel and A Song of Ice and Fire and perhaps An Ember in the Ashes, but it is a unique entity. Your novel is engaging because the fantasy realm that it draws us into is intricate and compelling and the themes of loyalty, faith, and loss help you to tell human stories in a fantasy setting. You’ve created a fascinating cast of characters and creatures.”

That works for me.

Howdy, one and all. Four months have already passed since the Inkshares crowdfund campaign for Bane of All Things ended in success so it’s time for an update.

Things move slowly in the publishing business and that’s just par for the course. As much as I can’t wait to have the finished product in my hands (and in yours), it takes time and plenty of sober second thought to polish a novel from a debut author, and develop its marketing plan, to ensure it has the best chance of standing out from the crowd and doing well.

My editor at Inkshares continues to work on my Editorial Letter. This comprehensive assessment of BoAT’s strengths and weaknesses will give me a handle on what edits and revisions I must make to ensure this story is the best version of itself that it can be. The plan a couple of months ago called for me to have my Letter by now, but it’s taking a little longer than first expected.

In the meantime, Inkshares has already set up my Properties page. Properties is the side of the Inkshares platform reserved for talent agents, other publishers and movie and TV producers. This is where they come to scout out interesting books they may want to licence in some way, or even opt for the Hollywood treatment. So who knows what could happen there!

Also, I vowed as part of the crowdfunding campaign that I would donate one dollar from each copy pre-ordered to non-profit Autism Ontario on behalf of my autistic son and nephews. That donation has been made, rounded up to a nice even $500.

Thanks again to each and every one of you for making all this possible. Stay tuned for further updates as the production process for BoAT moves ahead!





Valiquette 10 22 18 028 copy Leo Valiquette · Author · added 5 months ago
Thanks, Ferd!
098de134cf14fc66a9c66b4f51abf753 Ferd Crôtte · Author · added 5 months ago
Congratulations, Leo! In Production!!! :D


Howdy, Folks. It’s been six weeks since I announced the success of the campaign for Bane of All Things and I finally have an update to share. 

The next step in the process is the Editorial Letter. This will be an exhaustive evaluation of the manuscript’s strengths and weaknesses in all dimensions – character, plot, pacing, tone and all that subtle stuff that most readers probably don’t want to know too much about because it’s kind of like pulling back the curtain on the Wizard in Oz. But damn, doesn’t a story sing when the author gets it right. 

I found out yesterday that my Editorial Letter will be coming in mid-August. Once I have this in hand, the revision process will begin in earnest.

Not that I have been sitting on my hands in the meantime. On the suggestion of Inkshares CEO Adam Gomolin, I have been digesting two classic works on the craft of writing that I hadn’t yet added to my reference library, John Gardner’s The Art of Fiction and Madison Smartt Bell’s Narrative Design. Taking the time to reflect on the current draft of BoAT will reading through these has given me some ideas for tweaks and refinements. I have until mid-July to make those changes and resubmit the manuscript to Inkshares so that only the latest best version goes under scrutiny for that Editorial Letter. This will certainly keep my nose to the grindstone!

Those giveaways and prizes I promised

Now I must apologize for being slow with those campaign mementos and prizes I had promised – the signed posters and canvas prints. I have started getting those out, so if you were a prize winner for a canvas, or a supporter who qualifies for a signed poster(s) for having pre-ordered multiple copies of BoAT, rest assured they will soon be on their way. If you live in the Ottawa area and I haven’t asked for your home mailing address, it’s because I plan to either mail to your workplace or drop by and deliver in person.

Other great Inkshares projects you may want to check out

Lastly, I want to give a shout out to a few fellow Inkshares authors currently in funding:

Ricky Ruszin has only nine days left on the campaign for Showtime! and is hoping that getting past the 400-pre-order mark will be enough to earn a publication offer from Inkshares as I did. Showtime! Is a spooky tale about the boob tube described as “America’s Got Talent meets Timeless with a dash of Carrie.”

Jacqui Castle is already a published Inkshares author and has launched her campaign for the second book in her series, The Seclusion. This is one of those cautionary tales about a dystopian future under a total surveillance state that’s looking all too likely these days.

And then there is Allison Basile’s The Little Book of Bad Intentions, described as Jane Austen meets The War of the Roses, in which an aging playboy races against the clock to murder his ruthless trophy wife—before Alzheimer’s sets in, and he can’t remember where he’s stashed the body.

And, again, thanks much!

Once again, my deepest thanks to each and every one of you for making all this possible. 




Howdy! I just got off the phone an hour ago with Adam Gomolin, CEO of Inkshares. 

He didn’t call to talk about the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Inkshares will publish Bane of All Things.

I can’t say when yet. There is still much work to do. The Inkshares team and I are in wholehearted agreement that BoAT be the best version of itself that it can be before hitting bookstores. Debut novels face a tough battle to get noticed these days, what with Netflix, HBO and everything else on a 55-inch flat screen competing for people’s attention.

We don’t want to just publish a novel, but a novel with the best chance of success.

So, it will be back to school for me and BoAT for the next several months. I will get the paperwork tomorrow that will begin my “enrolment” in Inkshares’ Inkubator Program. Consider it the literary version of the incubator that a tech startup would go into, with the nose-to-the-grindstone revising and editing that I expected would follow a successful campaign. 

I will keep you up to date as this moves along. Hopefully before too long, I can give you news about an actual publication date and when you can expect the copies you have pre-ordered.

For now, let me say once again, “Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!”

It is not an exaggeration to say that this could not and would not have happened without the patience and support of each and everyone one of you. My deepest and sincerest thanks. I will be reaching out to everyone who ordered two or more copies individually for your mailing addresses to send those signed souvenir posters.

The reality of this might finally be starting to sink in :).



Hey, folks. I hope everyone had a great weekend and stayed dry, depending on where you are in relation to spring floods. A sincere thank you to everyone who has come on board since my last update on Friday.

Further to that update, here we are, with now only a day and a half left on the campaign. If I don’t hear from Inkshares this afternoon, I will be reaching out for tomorrow morning.

To help ease the nail-biting suspense in the meantime, why not go for an epic finish and aim for 500!

I have said before but can’t stress enough -- any and all last-minute support DOES matter to help swing a decision by Inkshares editors in my favour. Surely you have a friend or family member who appreciates the gift of a good (fantasy) read. Why not bump up your pre-order total with another copy for them as a gift?

Remember, there will be thank you gifts for everyone who has ordered two or more copies if this campaign succeeds. And if it doesn’t, you get a refund on all your pre-orders, no strings attached. Either way, I am making that donation to Autism Ontario on behalf of my son and nephews of one dollar for each pre-ordered copy.



Good morning, dear supporters.

Well, we have been in this spot before – only a handful of days before the campaign for Bane of All Things expires, waiting for word on whether or not it’s made the grade.

Have you ever been in that situation where you’re waiting to find out if you’ve gotten that dream job, desperate to know but afraid to ask? 

Trust me, this is that times 10.

Who knows where this might go if Inkshares decides to publish BoAT? Take Tal M. Klein’s sci-fi novel, The Punch Escrow. To date, this novel has sold almost 22,000 copies through Inkshares. But that isn’t even the big news – before The Punch Escrow even hit bookstores, Inkshares had secured a 7-figure movie deal for the book with Hollywood studio Lionsgate.

I can only hope. It’s your support that will help make something like that happen.

As you know, when we crossed the 400 pre-order mark back on April 1, Inkshares editors committed to review the manuscript. I expected to have their decision by now, but these are busy folks with a lot on their plates. They may even be waiting to see how much higher that pre-order total can climb by Tuesday’s deadline before responding to me. 

What makes Inkshares so great is that it will support authors who are still diamonds in the rough. The editors will invest considerable time to help authors up their game and produce a strong novel that’s ready for the big time. 

But their willingness to commit to BoAT and to me, and invest that time and effort, very much depends on how much community support I have been able to muster. It’s your support that tells Inkshares my work, beyond its own merits, is worth their time.

After working on my own dime with a great developmental editor up here in Canada before ever launching BoAT’s campaign on Inkshares, I can only hope that this diamond shows some polish. But still, it is you who ultimately holds the power to swing that vote in my favour.

On Monday morning I will reach out to see if the editors have arrived at a decision. If I can beg your patience one more time, let me again ask that you pre-order another copy this weekend, if not for yourself than for someone else. If you have already done that, fantastic, and thank you very much.

Let’s get that pre-order total a little higher before I bite the bullet and send that email on Monday.



Well, here we are into a long weekend and Bane of All Things’fate remains undecided. That’s the way it often goes in the publishing world. Editors are busy folk. It’s usually the busiest who are the ones an author wants to work with most. 

Getting a novel published and levering that into a career is a long game that demands patience and persistence. In the meantime, here is Smokey and Snowbelle to wish you a Happy Easter, even if neither of them was willing to play along and stay in that basket this morning for the photo opp ;)

Enjoy your time with friends and family this weekend, however you chose to observe it.

I will just leave you with the usual thought – so long as the jury is still out on BoAT, additional pre-orders continue to matter to help influence the editors in our favour. We are at 425 now, let’s nudge that total a little higher!



Good evening. Well, this coming week may be the one we have been waiting for -- I might hear from Inkshares with their assessment of Bane of All Things and whether it has made the grade for publication. Stay tuned with fingers crossed!

Whatever the outcome, know that each and every one of you has my deepest thanks and appreciation for all that you have done and the patience and support you have so graciously provided.

Bane of All Things is of course not the only title in funding on Inkshares. Another is Steve Hermanos’s baseball/time travel mash up Going, Going Gone!, in which a trio of over-pampered, modern-day baseball players are thrust back in time to the 1906 San Francisco earthquake.

Today, Steve hit the 750 pre-order funding goal, which immediately put GGG! into the production pipeline for publication! It’s a huge accomplishment and a testament to his hard work. Steve is a baseball guy and well tapped into that community. He’s done an excellent job of mustering support from baseball fans and the results speak for themselves.

As I have said before, many titles are selected for publication by Inkshares without hitting that 750 pre-order target and I am hoping BoAT will be the next one.

Until the very last minute before I get that fateful email from an Inkshares editor, every additional pre-order does count to help swing the vote in my favour. So, if you have any inclination at all to order another copy (or your first copy) of BoAT, now is the time! Right now, before you go to sleep tonight!

Happy reading.



Notable Readers

Kelsey Rae Barthel
Dsc00487   copy
Craig A. Munro
Portrait 21 dave
Dave Barrett
1929742 524949699820 1875 n
Stephen Carignan
Ferd Crôtte
Adam Gomolin
Author photo bw
Mike X Welch
Eric H. Heisner
Mike midshot
Mike Donald
Batten003 web400px
Robert Batten
Christopher Huang
Kendra Namednil
Profile pic %283%29
Wamuhu Mwaura
B. brewer
William Schiele
Louise Lindell
Valkyrie2 %282%29
Tahani Nelson
Andy L. Kubai
Roman Colombo
Dsc 00352 square
Kaytalin Platt
Userphoto1 original
Alec Saunders