A quick update on EIDOLON

It’s near the end of spring break here at Casa Draven, and while I actually did get writing done despite having 3 kids in the house 24/7 (along with a husband and his gimp ankle), I’ll be glad when school starts up again.

As I’ve received a few e-mails inquiring about EIDOLON’S status, I thought I’d post an update here.

The manuscript will be finished by March 31st, and one of my two editors has already edited the first 53k words.  Feedback from her so far has been that it’s a clean manuscript with only a few minor issues and two larger ones, which we’ve already resolved.  I just need to get in there and revise.  I’m hoping she says the same about the second part.  Once she edits that, and I make revisions, I’ll send it on to my second editor.  Afterward, more revisions, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed they’ll be light.  Both of my editors are fast and thorough, but I am, as usual, sending them stuff at the 11th hour.  I’ll compare their notes to anything my beta readers point out, and if there are differences, I may or may not make additional changes.  Then it’s proof-reading, formatting, blurb-writing (my least favorite thing in the whole process) and upload.  So hopefully by the 31st, and if not, then maybe a week later (guesstimate – give or take a few days).  I sorta like the idea of uploading on April 1st.  :-)

I’m taking my first editor’s advice to heart.  According to her “…we want this book to be right, not necessarily on time. It has the potential to knock the socks off Radiance...”  Motivational words from a wise woman.  :-)

In the meantime, I want to direct you to a pre-order button currently available on Amazon for a title by one of my all-time favorite authors.  Intisar Khanani writes YA fantasy.  I don’t typically read YA, but I’d read Khanani’s grocery list if she published it.  I fell in love with her work when I read her short story THE BONE KNIFE (permafree read on Amazon).  I then read THORN and SUNBOLT.  Her latest, MEMORY OF ASHES, is the second book in her Sunbolt Chronicles and priced at .99 cents.  SUNBOLT is  also currently .99 cents.  I definitely recommend the first book and can’t wait to get my hands on the second.  Hell, I recommend all her books.  She’s just a fantastic writer.

http://www.amazon.com/Memories-Ash-Sunbolt-Chronicles-Book-ebook/dp/B01CX5G3OG/

It’s Friday, and while a weekend is like any other work day for me, this one is one step closer to the end of spring break, so I’m celebrating.  I hope you all have a great weekend.

Grace

 

A little something extra in the monthly newsletter

February has been a rough month here at Casa Draven.  Spouse broke his ankle in three places and is bed ridden, and I have an elderly parent in decline, so things are a little chaotic these days.

Goodreads has listed EIDOLON with a new release date of March 31st, and I’m still shooting for that despite the unexpected issues that popped up this month.

My newsletter is going out tomorrow (February 29th) and will include the first four chapters (Prologue – Chapter 3) of EIDOLON.  Caveat lector – these chapters are rough drafts, therefore they are unedited, unbeta’d and mostly uncorrected.  What I always like to call the bedhead versions.  As such, be warned there will be typos and hiccups galore, and I can’t guarantee that some elements existing in the rough draft will still be there once my editors give it the once-over and I put in the necessary revisions and corrections.

These first four rough draft chapters will only be available in the newsletter (okay, the prologue is also on my blog, but we won’t count that), so if you’d like to read them prior to the final version of EIDOLON going live next month, please subscribe to my newsletter here:

Grace Draven newsletter

Best,

Grace

 

 

BENEATH A WANING MOON now available in audio format

I’ve been chomping at the bit waiting for it to go live, and it’s finally up. BENEATH A WANING MOON in audio format and narrated by her awesomeoness Gabrielle Baker of Gabrielle Voices is now available over at Audible.

If you’re unfamiliar with this title, BENEATH A WANING MOON is collaboration between Elizabeth Hunter and me (our second one) that was released in October 2015 in digital and print format. It contains two novellas, one from Elizabeth’s Elemental Mysteries series called A VERY PROPER MONSTER and a stand-alone by me called GASLIGHT HADES. That story is now actually a gateway story into more books, with the second tentatively titled GASLIGHT VIDUUS.

Anyway, if you like audio books and narrators with buttery voices, then I believe you’ll like listening to BENEATH A WANING MOON.

http://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/Beneath-a-Waning-Moon-Audiobook/B01BHB1M48/

 

EIDOLON – delayed

Okay, so when folks first asked me when EIDOLON was coming out, I told them very end of 2015 or very beginning of 2016. Then I got a little more specific and said very end of January 2016.

Unfortunately, as much as I’d like to meet that date (and believe me,much celebrating goes on in this house when I write “End”), it isn’t happening. Here’s why.

-poor planning
-bronchitis
-holidays
-self publishing
-fear
-life

The temptation is to go into details and give a lengthy explanation that expands the above reasons, but I figure you aren’t too interested in all the baggage. I’ll just reiterate what I said in my previous end of year blog post: I don’t want to f*ck this book up, so I’m taking my time (and probably being overly cautious). I figure you’ll forgive me faster for putting out a good book late than putting out a crappy book by a deadline that I self-imposed and honestly guesstimated.

I will tell you that I have a concrete deadline to complete the draft by January 27th. That’s an outside deadline to meet the requirements of another party. However, that still means additional weeks for edits and revisions. While my editors tell me I write clean copy and edits and revisions have been fairly quick in the past, I’m not my editors’ only client, so I’ll need to reschedule time with them to go over my manuscript since I missed the date I was originally planning to turn it in to them.

This is getting too long. So to sum up, I haven’t yet made a complete liar out of myself yet. I originally said very beginning of 2016, and I’m still on target for that, just not January 31st.

My apologies and thanks for your patience.

WHY ALL MY FB POSTS HEAD STRAIGHT TO HELL IN THEIR BASKETS – an end-of-year post

So, the obligatory Year-in-Review post.

Unlike the great end-of-year post Elizabeth Hunter posted on her blog (and if you haven’t read it, you really should), with its insight, information and organized construction, this post will be a meandering mess of things that strike up my brain spark as I write this.

I recently posted on my personal FB page, asking for suggestions on what to write for this kind of post.  Responses were interesting to say the least.  Everything from:

  • Favorite creatures from various cultures
  • Writing sex scenes vs. battle scenes
  • My New Year’s resolutions (shortest article ever consisting of one word – none)
  • Unladen swallow air speed velocity
  • How do I plan out a story arc

to:

  • Ways to combat writer’s block
  • How the romance novel has evolved over the past 100 years
  • Are publishing houses doing away with Urban Fantasy
  • Merkins (let me save you the trouble of Googling this term if you don’t already know it.  A merkin is a pubic wig.  That set off a huge thread of commentary which inspired one of my editors, Evil Editor Mel, to say I should title this post WHY ALL MY FB POSTS HEAD STRAIGHT TO HELL IN THEIR BASKETS.)  Winner, winner, chicken dinner – hence the title of this post.

Believe me when I tell you that the folks who visit my pages and blog and interact with me are a lot more interesting than I am.  :)

Honestly, as much as I hate to admit it, I’m a fairly dull person.  I write books while sitting in an old desk chair with my smelly dog stretched out under my feet.  Unless I have errands to run or am expecting visitors, I tend to write while comfortably dressed in 20+ year-old concert shirts, lavender pajama pants with the fashionable pattern of cartoon cats and fish skeletons on them, and my favorite pair of Vans which have holes in the toes and look like they’ve been gnawed on by a shark.  Glamorous, eh?

Anyway, as this is a Year-End post about 2015, I’ll focus on some of the things for the year and what to expect in 2016.

2015:  What a helluva ride.  I started serializing RADIANCE on my blog in 2014 as a way to drum up some interest in my brand-spanking new website put together by the lovely Ilona Gordon.  RADIANCE was supposed to be a short story of 12k words or less–a straightforward tale of a marriage of convenience between two people of different species with different ideas of what constituted physical beauty.

That remains the core of the tale, but at some point RADIANCE grew beyond the constrictive confines of a short story, hit puberty in novella-length and shot right on past that mark to become a full blown novel.  While I wish I could say I was surprised that happened, I’m not.  When I first told my editors, Lora and Mel, that RADIANCE would be a short story, Mel replied with “Are you suuuuurrre?”  She knows me well.  :)

When the story went live in January 2015, it had some legs on it thanks to the serialization, word of mouth from readers, reviewers and fellow authors (thank you Elizabeth Hunter and Ilona Andrews!), and a support structure from a very small back catalogue of previous works like MASTER OF CROWS and ENTREAT ME.  Thanks to Jill Smith, reviewer at Romantic Times, who reviewed ENTREAT ME in 2014, my name went in front of a wider national audience.

A lot of good stuff had positioned RADIANCE for a healthy start.  But dayum!  That little book shot out of the gate, all thrusters burning, and is still running the track at a healthy speed.  What started as a little tale to show off my new website became the novel-length gateway book to a 6-book series.  Now THAT did surprise me.

My books wouldn’t come together the way they have in their various formats without a ton of support from an awesome team of folks, so shoutouts and hearts to my editors Lora Gasway and Mel Sanders, my artists Louisa Gallie of The Art of Louisa Gallie and Isis de Sousa of Helheimen Designs, my narrator Gabrielle Baker of Gabrielle Voices and future narrator Jay Britton of Voice of Jay Britton, my cover model avatars Nora, Jeffrey and Emma, my personal assistant Kimberly, and my website guru Kathryn of Overmountain Studios.

I’m crossing my fingers that 2016 will be as breathtaking and as fun as 2015 was.  It will be a hell of a workload, with more books planned in the Wraith Kings series, a revamping and expansion of an earlier short story of mine, THE KING OF HEL, which will go into a duology with a story by the fabulous Jeffe Kennedy called CROWN OF THE QUEEN, a story (not yet sure of the length) about the Bonekeeper named Gideon whom you met briefly if you read GASLIGHT HADES, and who knows what else on the roster for 2016.

And while I thought it might never happen, it looks like MASTER OF CROWS will go out in audio format by spring of 2016.  I can’t even begin to describe how excited I am about this project.  Jay Britton of Voice of Jay Britton is spearheading the narration for this book, and what a golden voice he has, perfect for this book.  Other audio stuff:  EIDOLON will be available in 2016 in audio format (not yet sure of the exact date) as will BENEATH A WANING MOON (duology with Elizabeth Hunter). Both are narrated by Gabrielle Baker of Gabrielle Voices.

While I have you here, a quick note about EIDOLON:  I’m working fast and furious on it to meet my self-scheduled January 31st go-live deadline.  However…I’m not giving a guarantee.  This is why I don’t put up pre-orders.  This has been a difficult book to write for various reasons, not the least, the fact it has a high bar to reach.  I never expected RADIANCE to be as popular as it has been or for EIDOLON to be anticipated to the level that it is.  Don’t get me wrong.  I’m thrilled.  But I’m also scared shitless I’ll screw up Book 2.  With that being said, I’m taking my time and being careful.  If I feel the story isn’t where it should be by the deadline date, I’m moving it (the beauty of being a self publisher).  I’d rather put out a good story late than a crap story on time.  I owe that to myself, the book and to you, the reader.

So, that’s a wrap.  My sincerest thanks to you all for reading my flights of fancy.  I hope they’ve given you a few hours of entertainment.  Raising a toast to each of you for a healthy, happy and prosperous 2016.  Be kind to each other.  Slainte!

Grace Draven – December 31, 2015

EIDOLON book trailer

First off – a huge and heartfelt THANK YOU to Isis Sousa of Helheimendesign Vuttudal for creating the illustrations and putting together this book trailer. Had I put it together in Power Point, it would have been excruciatingly simplistic. She went above and beyond and far exceeded my expectations for this trailer, including adding additional music and sound effects that I didn’t even consider. Magic doesn’t just exist in fantasy worlds. It lives among us, residing in people like Isis.

See the link below for the book trailer to EIDOLON. You’ll see on the page the playbox for the video under Author Updates. I hope you like it as much as I do. If so, please let Isis know here in the comments. She busted her ass on this book trailer.

http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B005E9VYRK

Best regards,

Grace

Check out an awesome new book and get a chance to win a MASTER OF CROWS ornament – giveaway now CLOSED.

ETA (Monday, 12/21/2015) – CONTEST NOW CLOSED

Thanks to everyone who participated in the giveway/contest I posted about earlier for a chance to win a MASTER OF CROWS ornament. Mel Sterling randomized the selection via Randomizer.org. The two winners have been notified.

Again, thank you all very much for participating!

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So I’m really jazzed about Mel Stirling’s book TRUEHEART coming out in January (it’s currently available at Amz, B&N & Nook for preorder). I was chatting with her yesterday, and she was all calm and collected about it being out there, and I was the exact opposite—chatty and hyper and jumping up and down. You’d think it was MY book out there.  Anyway, on to the subject at hand.

Here’s a picture of an ornament I had made a couple of years ago with the MASTER OF CROWS artwork by Louisa Gallie on it (I have full unrestricted licensing and authorization from Lou to do this).  The ornament is porcelain or ceramic (I can’t remember which) with a glossy finish and is 2.75″ in diameter. 

MoC ornament

 

Today, I’m giving away two of them—one to a domestic (U.S.) winner and one to an international winner. If you’d like a chance to win the ornament, here’s whatcha gotta do:

Head on over to Mel’s website (points down to link), leave a comment for her (say hi, ask a question about the book, send her congrats for taking the plunge into self publishing, ask her about her neighbor’s alpacas visiting her garage, etc.) and let her know what country you’re hailing from. Mel will randomly pick a winner from the domestic group and one from the international group and let me know who the winner is. I’ll mail out both ornaments then. Contest ends Sunday evening at 6:00 p.m. U.S. pacific standard time (PST). You don’t have to pre-order her book to enter, but we’ll be high-fiving and cheering if you do.

Here’s the important part–You must comment on Mel’s site for a chance to win. You’re more than welcome to comment here too, but if you only comment here, you won’t be in the running for the ornament.

http://melsterling.com/?p=239

 

Best,

Grace

 

A cover reveal for a fellow author

Friend, editor, and fellow author Mel Sterling (fondly called Evil Editor Mel by me) has a new book coming out in January 2016. TRUEHEART is a fantasy romance that centers around a couple who challenge the malevolent Unseelie faery court. These aren’t Disney fairies of sparkly wings and magic that can make you fly. This is Faery, red of tooth and claw, complete with a goblin market, kelpies who drown people and eat their livers, redcaps who dye their haberdashery in blood, and the primal Wild Hunt with its powerful deer-headed Huntsman and hounds that are more demon than dog. I loved this tale so much and can’t wait for the book to go live next month. Until then, I’ll leave you with a cover reveal of TRUEHEART. In addition, when my newsletter comes out (hopefully by next week. My hardworking assistant Kimberly is putting it together), I will include the first chapter of TRUEHEART (with Mel’s permission) for you to read. I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I have.

Trueheart-frontdraft81

 

Cover design by Skyla Dawn Cameron of Indigo Chick Designs

Here’s the back-cover copy for the print version (coming spring, 2016).

Loyalty. Desperation. Grief.

Eight months ago a mysterious drug killed Tess Gordon’s brother, and now it’s spreading through her rehab counseling clients. They all claim they’re not addicted, the drug leaves no trace except its drained victims, and the cops aren’t interested. Aching with loss, Tess vows to find the source. What she finds instead is Thomas.

Slavery. Duty. Enchantment.

Thomas, the half-fae guardian of the goblin market, has plenty of problems—and just got another one. Pressed into the service of the Unseelie Queen, all he wants is his freedom. But Tess won’t go away, and the human girl is in way over her head.

One perilous late-autumn night, the fae and human worlds collide. Tess’s and Thomas’s separate tasks are inextricably tangled. Now, a half-fae and a human rehab counselor must walk the knife-edge of obligation, love, death and transformation–with the entire Unseelie Court, including the malevolent Wild Hunt, out for their blood.

Welcome to Portland, After Dark…

TRUEHEART COVER REVEAL!

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