Realms of Light: Progress Report One

Chapters written: Five out of an estimated twenty-five to thirty.

Chapters posted: None.

Anticipated start date: After Hallowe’en but before New Year’s.

I have things pretty much ready to start the serial of Realms of Light, but I’m holding off for a couple of reasons.

First and most importantly, I’m waiting to hear back from my editor at Tor regarding A Young Man Without Magic. If that needs revisions, those take priority; I don’t want to start the serial and then suddenly stop because I need to rewrite a chapter of A Young Man Without Magic.

Why does it get first priority? Because it pays a lot better than a serial.

Second, I’m hoping to coordinate this serial with some other authors, such as Sharon Lee and Steve Miller. We’re planning to establish a central site for online serials on this model at I’d like to have that up and running when I launch.

Besides, I have a speaking engagement in Kansas next week, and there are other distractions I’d like to get out of the way before I start. I also wouldn’t mind having Chapter Six written, maybe even Seven, just to have a buffer.

Which brings me to another issue I want to discuss, just to keep everyone’s expectations realistic. Realms of Light is a science-fictional detective story. Both previous serials were Ethshar stories. I’ve had a lot more practice writing light fantasy of the Ethshar sort, and I think it’s generally easier to write straight through in the first place; I haven’t written anything about Carlisle Hsing and her world in close to twenty years. It’s entirely possible that despite my best efforts and a reasonably complete outline, Realms of Light will hit snags along the way that will necessitate backtracking, revising, and so on before I can continue.

If that happens, I may not be able to stick to a strictly weekly schedule, even if the money’s there. I may also need to delete, insert, or rearrange pieces.

Any such changes will be included free, and I’ll let you know they’ve been made — that is, if I decide Chapter Thirteen isn’t working and throw it out, the new Chapter Thirteen, when I get it written, is already paid for. If I decide, in the middle of writing Chapter Twenty-Three, that it won’t work unless I go back and change something in Chapter Eight, then I’ll make that change, and it won’t be counted as something that needs to be paid for. Revisions will be announced here, and marked — that is, the corrected Chapter Eight would be headed “Chapter Eight (Revised).”

I’m working up a page that will explain how everything works, same as I have before, and I may post that a couple of weeks before actually starting the story.

So — any questions?