Department of Lost Souls

Half a dozen of the address-verification e-mails bounced, and I don’t have alternate addresses.

I don’t want to post full names here, to respect donors’ privacy, but I’m looking for:

Steve S.

Stephen G.

Matt W.

Emmeline S.

Shawn R.

Peter R.-S.

If one of those is you, please e-mail me at


Note to Donors

If you contributed $25 or more to The Vondish Ambassador, you should have received an e-mail from me today, asking you to verify your address and a couple of other details.

If you didn’t, these are the most likely explanations:

It got caught in your spam filters; you might want to check that and see if it’s in the junk folder, assuming you have one. If it’s gone forever, drop me a line and I’ll send a fresh copy with your name in the “To:” line, which usually gets it past filters.

You made partial payments from two different e-mail addresses, and I failed to notice and add them together. If that’s the case, please e-mail me and let me know.

You made multiple payments and I screwed up and didn’t record one of them.

You’re one of the two people (hi, Josh and Richard!) who paid by check and never, so far as I can determine, gave me an e-mail address. If you’re one of those two, I have your addresses here and will assume they’re still good, and that you don’t care about having your book autographed, unless you tell me otherwise.

If you made a donation of less than $25 and would like to add to it to bring the total up and get a copy of the first edition, you have until Friday, December 14th.

The first edition will be limited to 400 copies. It will be the only edition for at least the next six months, and quite possibly a year or more. It’s even possible there will never be another edition, though that seems unlikely.

I’m hoping to ship it out by the end of the year, but can’t promise I’ll make it.

Latest Word…

The Vondish Ambassador goes to the printer tomorrow.

I don’t know when I’ll have finished copies in hand, but it shouldn’t be all that long.

This is the Misenchanted Press trade paperback edition, with cover art by Kiri Evans. It’s a limited edition — there will only ever be the one printing. I don’t know yet about any future mass-market edition; I’ll be talking to the publisher from Wildside on Friday, and may have news after that.

Once I have a delivery date I’ll be e-mailing all donors to (a) verify that they want a copy of this edition, (b) make sure I have a current shipping address, and (c) ask whether they want it signed.

There exists a short Ethshar story, “The God in Red,” that could accompany this edition in chapbook form, the way “Sirinita’s Dragon” accompanied The Spriggan Mirror, but frankly, producing the chapbooks is a pain in the butt, so I’m not sure whether I’ll be doing that. I’ll see how the finances look, and the time constraints.

Sorry this has taken so long. Happy holidays!

As It Stands Now…

Here’s the situation:

Wildside is interested in doing a mass-market paperback edition of The Vondish Ambassador through their Cosmos Books imprint. However, they aren’t interested in doing a trade edition — the trade edition of The Spriggan Mirror didn’t make them any money.

I don’t expect anyone to accept a mere mass-market paperback as adequate compensation for a $25 donation.

Therefore, Wildside and I are creating a joint venture called The Misenchanted Press which will produce a trade paperback edition of The Vondish Ambassador. It’ll probably (but not definitely) be limited to no more than 500 copies, most of which will go to contributors; I do expect to have a few left over.

The Misenchanted Press edition is edited and typeset; right now we’re working on cover design and discussing whether or not to include an “Author’s Note” at the back. Once everything’s done it’ll be off to the printer, and I should have copies in hand in a couple of months.

The paperback, if all goes well, will be published by Cosmos Books in 2008 or early 2009, but as yet there are no contracts and it’s not definite. Lots of things could still go wrong.

Assuming this works out, though, and the paperback sells decently, I hope to follow this same model for any subsequent Ethshar novels.

The Next Step

I mailed the manuscript of The Vondish Ambassador to the editor yesterday.

No contract as yet, though — Wildside was not happy with sales of the trade paperback of The Spriggan Mirror, which complicates matters.  (None of the big chains wanted to carry it.)

The regular-sized paperback from Cosmos Books is just now shipping, and we’ll see if that helps.

We’re Getting There…

I’m sure many of you are wondering what’s happening as far as getting the finished novel done and delivered into your eager hands. Well, I’m working on it.

I had two other books under contract, which took priority. One of those, The Summer Palace, has now been completed, delivered, and accepted and will be published in 2008. The other, a non-fiction project, is written, but it still needs some updating — but for technical reasons I can’t do that updating until September.

Which means I’m midway through the second draft of The Vondish Ambassador. I should have it done in a couple of weeks, whereupon I will send it to my chosen editor and negotiate a contract with Wildside Press. (Yes, I’m using my own editor, as well as theirs.)

I’m sorry it’s taken so long.

Incidentally, there have been a few latecomers donating money toward The Vondish Ambassador, as recently as this past Saturday. I’ll probably send them copies of the finished book, but if you give me money at this point there is no guarantee you’ll get anything for it. All further donations are entirely at your own risk.

And donations directed to The Spriggan Mirror at this point receive nothing but a thank-you e-mail and my sincere gratitude.

In other Ethshar news, The Spriggan Mirror is still available in trade paperback and e-book editions, and the limited hardcover edition wasn’t yet sold out last I checked. The rack-sized paperback from Cosmos Books is scheduled for September.

The new Cosmos Books paperback of The Misenchanted Sword is scheduled for January 2008. No dates yet on any other Ethshar books.

The next Ethshar serial — and I may do a non-Ethshar one first — will probably be The Final Calling, just to get it over with. I’ve recently worked out a lot of plot details on it. I have no idea at all when I’ll get to it, though.

Thanks again for all your support!

News & Updates

First, no, I haven’t written the final draft of The Vondish Ambassador yet. Haven’t even started it. We were traveling out west for a week and a half, and I’ve been working on The Summer Palace, third and final volume in the Annals of the Chosen, which is very late.

But I will get to it soon.

Wildside will get The Vondish Ambassador out in a print-on-demand trade paperback edition as soon as possible once it’s finished, and the regular offset edition will appear several months thereafter. Yes, a mass-market paperback edition is planned for somewhere a year or two down the road.

You can still claim a copy of the first edition by donating $25, but this offer expires April 10th.

Meanwhile, Wildside has also decided to publish a limited-edition hardcover of The Spriggan Mirror. This will be a 500-copy edition, $35 a pop, not signed or numbered. It wasn’t my idea; it was a whim on publisher John Betancourt’s part, as enough people had asked about one that he thought it would be worth doing.

I believe a mass-market paperback of The Spriggan Mirror ought to be out some time in 2008.

The next serial is still undetermined — don’t know what it’ll be, or when.

Anything else anyone wants to know?

Chapter Twenty-Six has been posted

Chapter Twenty-Six is up.

The current system is that the remaining two chapters will be posted as soon as they’re paid for, and the epilogue will be posted with Chapter Twenty-Eight.

I have $65.95 toward Chapter Twenty-Seven; another $184.05 will do it. $434.05 will finish the first draft.

However, even if I finish posting the whole thing tomorrow (which seems unlikely), I will continue taking donations and counting them as advance orders through March 31st. $25 will get you a copy of the finished book if you’re in the U.S., and $30 will cover it anywhere else, and all donors of any amount will have access to the two bonus maps.

In other news, I’ve talked to the publisher at Wildside Press, and we have a verbal deal for Wildside to publish The Vondish Ambassador. This won’t be final until there’s a signed contract, of course, but it’s a start. We’ve also agreed that rather than me doing a privately-printed first edition, Wildside will do a small first edition (maybe print-on-demand) as quickly as is practical, and then release their regular edition next year — they really don’t like the idea of a non-Wildside edition existing, but they need about a year of lead time for their regular one. This means a lot less hassle for me, and I hope will suit everyone.

Wildside should also be offering their e-book edition of The Spriggan Mirror fairly soon; they have the rights now.

Thanks to all of you for your support!