Realms of Light: Progress Report Twenty-Six

Okay, the first draft is written, though I’m going to go back and revise a little before I let anyone else see it.

It runs twenty chapters — well, nineteen and a half, really, because Chapter Twenty is just a couple of pages long. It’s 60,300 words. That means the final draft will probably be pretty close to the same length as the original Nightside City.

I’ll be sending donors who asked to receive the chapters as they’re written a single file of Chapters Sixteen through Twenty some time this week. I’ll also be sending them a small file of the notes I’ve written to myself about what needs to get done in rewrite, as a sort of extra glimpse into the project.

There are two obvious questions about where we go from here: What’s going to happen with the web serial? What’s the schedule for the finished book?

The web serial will continue as money continues to trickle in; I have some hope that it will be completed eventually. I’m about halfway to posting Chapter Thirteen. Chapter Twenty will be a freebie, included with Chapter Nineteen; it’s too short to require full price. That means my total take for the serial will be about $4,500 gross; since I need to pay for copies for donors out of that, the net will be much less. This is why serials are a relatively low priority for me; it’s just not a cost-effective use of my writing time.

If the serial is never completed, well, that’s just too bad.

As for turning the first draft into a finished book, it’s going to be a spare-time project for me, but I will get a final draft done some time in 2010. FoxAcre Press intends to publish it, though we don’t actually have a signed contract yet — we have a fairly detailed verbal agreement. I can’t speak for FoxAcre as to when the finished book will be available, but I can and do promise that it will be printed and mailed to donors before it’s offered to the general public, and that if I do put together an accompanying pamphlet about designing the Eta Cassiopeia system, it will only be available to donors to the serial.

It’s been suggested that FoxAcre might do a combined edition of Nightside City and Realms of Light in a single volume; the publisher has turned that idea down. However, donors who don’t already have a copy of Nightside City and want one should contact me by e-mail; we can arrange something, though it won’t be an omnibus volume.

Now, regarding future serials: I’ll start a new Ethshar story sometime in 2010. I don’t know when. It will probably be The Final Calling, but that’s not 100% certain — if I develop a sudden wild enthusiasm for The Sorcerer’s Widow or Azraya of Ethshar or A Feather from Her Wing or At the Sign of the Crimson Wolf, I’ll do that instead. (I don’t think there are any contenders other than those five.)

If it is The Final Calling, it will start with a short story, “The Warlock’s Refuge,” which will be posted as a teaser instead of Chapter One — the story will eventually be either a prologue or Chapter One, but it will also a complete story in its own right. No, I haven’t written it yet; it’s just an outline so far.

There may be other, non-Ethshar serials as well, depending how my career is going elsewhere and how productive my writing time is, but I’m not going to try doing any more sequels to twenty-year-old novels. This means The Exile and the Empire is not going to happen. Probably just as well, as the outline’s awfully skimpy and I’ve forgotten a lot of stuff I never bothered to write down. Silver Stars is right out, too.

I don’t expect to do much of anything on any serials for the last two months of 2009; I need to focus on more lucrative work for awhile, and of course the holidays are a big distraction.

So — there you go. Comments and questions are very welcome.

16 thoughts on “Realms of Light: Progress Report Twenty-Six

  1. Sounds good to me. As for the next one, as long as the Final Calling does get done sooner or later, I’m fine with whichever one of the Ethshar novels comes next.

    As a suggestion, when you get ready to start the next serial, how about an e-mail to donors from this serial, advising that the new serial is starting. (I.e Time to pony up for ht enext go round for those of us who pay one shot for our copy of the finished draft)

  2. Oh, I’ll e-mail everyone on the various serial-related lists I’ve compiled.

    (Didn’t I do a mass e-mail for Realms of Light? I thought I did, but that was thirteen months ago so I’m not sure.)

  3. I, for one, would like the next Ethshar serial to NOT be The Final Calling. I thoroughly enjoy the Ethshar books and am a touch concerned that people might lose interest somewhat after that book is finished. I would find a return to Valder refreshing. I would also love to read The Sorcerer’s Widow.

  4. Oh, I don’t think readers will lose interest; it’s not as if the whole series has been about warlocks. And I’m tired of being nagged about it.

    But we’ll see. I’m not going to worry about it for at least another few weeks.

    As for Realms of Light, I sent the last five chapters out to donors last night, so naturally I woke up this morning realizing there’s a paragraph that should have been in Chapter Twenty that isn’t. Sigh.

  5. I’ve just started re-reading the early chapters, getting ready to read the last few.

    What about have a post here with a comment thread for donors who’ve read the whole book to discuss it with possible spoilers?

  6. I’m with RM…personally, I’m looking forward to At the Sign of the Crimson Wolf the most. But, on the other hand, The Final Calling kind of needs to be written, just for the sake of completeness.

    I’m glad Realms of Light finally got done; I like the universe that it’s set in I regret that it hadn’t done better so we could see Carlisle again.

  7. As you said, 13 months ago….. I can’t remember last week half the time.

    Anyway, I put what you sent into an acrobat file for you to distribute (already set up for downloading to acrobat on PDAs. If you send out an additional parapgraph I will alter it and resend it.)

    Now I have to go find my copy of Nightside City (I think I know where it is….)

  8. I enjoyed both NightSide City and Realms of Light, good to see the sequel complete at last.

    And to make everything complete I suppose I have to vote for the next book I’d like to see: Azraya of Ethshar…

  9. Was a sequel to The Blood of a Dragon ever planned? I like all three of the major protagonists of that book quite a bit. Will Teneria pop back up again in a novel (as a character)?

  10. Sure, Dumery of the Dragon. It’s still on the list, just not near the top.

    Teneria’s turned up in very small roles a couple of places, actually — she’s in The Vondish Ambassador, though I’m not sure her name is ever given.

  11. Another place Teneria was (if I recall correctly) was in Spell of the Black Dagger.

    My preference for the next Ethshar book? One which *you* (LWE) want to write, because then it’ll be done faster and it will be less time until the next next Ethshar book is done. 🙂

  12. I second Goljerp, but in case you’ve got a bunch of choices tickling your writing fingers, I’d like Dumery, Crimson Wolf or Final Calling equally as much.

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