It’s been a couple of months since Sync City has gone out into the wild, and I’ve been getting some fantastic feedback – thanks very much.
To celebrate, and hopefully get some wider exposure, I’m doing a giveaway on Goodreads. If you follow this link you can enter to win a signed copy of Sync City (scroll down below the book cover and click on Enter Giveaway): https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33377334-sync-city.
It’d be awesome if you could dive on in and take part. It would be even better if you could share this link with your friends and family. Head on over to Goodreads! Jack is waiting for you!
Dear Sparked reader,
Thank you so much for your amazing support during our preorder campaign last fall. You might be wondering where the heck your copy of the book is, and why we’ve taken so long to update you.
Good news! We have a publication date: October 3, 2017. Your book will be mailed (or become available as an e-book) on that date. And the reason we’ve taken so long to update you is that we’ve been working hard on making Sparked completely ready for your eyes.
We thought you might be interested to hear a bit about that process and the lessons we learned, especially if you’re a writer yourself or interested in writing.
Lesson #1: Don’t shut down when you get feedback, even if you THINK you’re done.
When someone gives you feedback, it’s human nature to focus on the negative, and it’s a writer’s nature to blow the negative wildly out of proportion. After Sparked achieved its preorder target, a developmental editor gave us a—gulp—twenty-page letter that sent us into a tailspin. The word “overkill” jumped out and something about how we should remove every reference to zombies. We’d already revised Sparked countless times. In despair, Helena couldn’t even bring herself to read the whole thing, while Malena lost herself in cat videos on Youtube.
But when we forced ourselves to read the letter line by line, we were shocked at how positive it actually was. It was like realizing that the mean girl at school, muttering insults under her breath, was actually complimenting your fashion sense (and giving you some useful pointers too). If we’d received that feedback with an open mind in the first place, we would have gotten the revision done a lot sooner.
Lesson #2: Thinking your book is done is usually a clear sign that you need to do another draft.
You should never tempt fate using the word “final” when naming a draft of your book (as in “SparkedFinal.doc”). Just as we were treating ourselves to a celebratory lunch, we received notes from editor number two, our line editor. More changes were needed, including more “sexual tension.” Believe us, it is not easy to find a way for the hero and heroine to make eyes at each other while also trying to prevent the end of the world. But we set to work again.
In the end, both editors were totally right and we’ re grateful to them for their brilliant insights and even more grateful the book is finally finished (or at least going to press. If you see more that we should have changed, maybe keep it to yourself at this point). We’re also excited that the book is coming out in October because it’s a spooky book that takes place in the week before Halloween, and…
Well, after all that work, we don’t want to spoil the story, do we?
We will update again when there’s more concrete news to share (readings! parties!) but for now, we are deeply grateful for your support and your patience and we can’t wait to send our book to you.
I have lots of great stuff to share today!
First and foremost – The Bones of the Past eBook is ready and available for download for those who pre-ordered through Inkshares!
To grab your copy, just go to the book page here: https://www.inkshares.com/books/the-bones-of-the-past
After you log in, there should be a ‘Download’ tab under the cover image. The book is available in both EPUB (Kobo/Apple) and MOBI (Kindle).
This should be available to you if you ordered an eBook or if you ordered a hardcopy. If you haven’t received a notification email from Inkshares about it, and the download tab isn’t appearing for you, a quick note to Hello@inkshares.com will get it sorted out quickly.
Second - Paperbacks should start going out sometime next month. I’ll be down in the San Francisco area signing the backer copies on May 8th. Your books will start shipping out shortly thereafter!
Third – For anyone in the Ottawa area (or willing to travel!), Chapters Rideau will be hosting a launch event for the book on May 30th from 6-8pm. Come join us for a reading, coffee, and swag, as well as some appropriately themed baked treats from Lolai’s Yummies! For those who asked – there will be lots of paperback copies available in the store that night :)
Full details are here: https://www.facebook.com/events/126870887829199/
Thank you all again and again. I cannot express how grateful I am for the support you’ve shown me, and the help in getting my story out into the world!
Great news today! I received the Rites of Passage syndicate award! This syndicate supports first time authors, and I couldn’t be more proud to be recognized this way.
I’ve submitted my manuscript markups to my development editor, and I like to imagine her pouring over them this week. Once I’ve heard back from her, I’ll move on to reworking sections of my manuscript, adding and deleting scenes, and changing back to the original point of view. It’s going to be a lot of work, but well worth it in the end. :)
Apparently, it’s been a good four months since I gave an update about Tantalus Depths, which, frankly, is inexcusable. Particularly given that I’d said my next updates would have come by the end of the year. Turns out I am really bad at setting deadlines for myself, and this is something I am going to work on fixing going forward.
Yes, after far too much deliberation with my personal final round of edits, I have finally submitted my manuscript of Tantalus Depths to Inkshares, along with the various other paperwork necessary to get the production process going. My last round of feedback from my beta readers gave me a lot of ideas for things to work on, and I’ve incorporated lots of changes into the book that greatly improve the pacing and tension.
Technically, Tantalus Depths was more or less submission-ready as soon as the pre-order campaign ended, and I could have sent it in right then. I’ll be getting extensive help with editing as a part of the production process, with professional editors, so I could have thrown my manuscript to them right at the beginning for them to sort out. I could have done that…but I really couldn’t have done that. This story is too important to me, and I feel that you, as my supporters, deserve a book that is as good as it can possibly be. I’m confident that the extra time and effort put into the manuscript before submitting it to Inkshares will improve a story that I’m already proud of, and I think you’ll be really pleased with the result.
Now, because people are going to ask, submitting my manuscript does NOT mean it’s going to be published immediately. Technically, the production process hasn’t begun yet. It’s going to be a while before Inkshares has time to devote to Tantalus Depths; other excellent, well-deserving books are ahead of me in line, and Inkshares can only work on so many projects at once. What this DOES mean, though, is that the timer has officially started. I have personally done everything I have to do to get the production process started; the ball is in Inkshares’ court now, and they’ll get it rolling as soon as they can.
The production process for a book can take a year or longer, so realistically, don’t expect Tantalus Depths to come out until sometime in 2018. I can promise you, though, that I will update you on its progress in production as soon as I’m updated myself (realistically, there’s no possible way I’ll be able to keep quiet when I hear the news that they’ve launched production)
Do expect to see more other Tantalus Depths-related content in the future. I haven’t forgotten my campaign promise to release an Inkshares-exclusive prologue to the book (I temporarily tabled it to focus on the book people paid for), and I have many other irons in the fire. I look forward to bringing them all to you before too long.
Strap yourselves in, folks. Our voyage is just beginning.
Hey, everybody. It’s been about a month since I submitted the manuscript and wanted to dash off a quick note. I’ve yet to hear from the publisher, but when Disintegration’s moment comes up in the production queue, they’ll surely be in touch.
In the meantime, please check out Integration. Spend a little time in utopia before it all goes to hell. ;)
April 18, 2017
Hello, everyone! Just a quick update on a few things going on.
First, I’m happy to share that I am currently the "featured blogger" on John Robin’s "Epic Fantasy Writer" blog. Check out my post on lessons I’ve learned about world-building...
I’ve also set up my GoodReads Author Page. Right now it only features "Darkstar Rising," the first novel I published a few years back through Xlibris. "Shadow King" will be joining it as soon as it is ready.
And speaking of... "Shadow King" is still in the queue waiting for the project to kick-off, and once it does, I’ll be sure to let you all know right away. Sales are holding at 291 right now, and I’d definitely like to push past that 300 mark and beyond (and my birthday was earlier this month, so breaking that barrier would be a pretty great be-lated b-day gift!!).
And last but not least, I’ve given my own web site a complete overhaul, so you can check that out here: www.susankhamilton.com. I still need to make a few small adjustments (like figure out how to make it look the way I want on mobile devices). Like most web sites, it is a work in progress.
That’s all for now; I’ll send more news when it is available!