Ishta’s Companion: Lack of Progress Report

Chapter Fourteen has not been posted, as we aren’t even close to having it paid for. I’ve e-mailed it to contributors, and will continue to do that with new chapters as I finish them. I’ll post them as they’re paid for, but it appears that won’t be anywhere near weekly.

If anyone wants to talk about Chapter Fourteen, here’s a place to do so. Spoiler warnings might be nice, but really, I don’t have a great deal of sympathy for anyone who comes here and hasn’t kicked in a few bucks who then encounters spoilers.

Ishta’s Companion: Progress Report Thirteen

Yeah, yeah, so this is late. There’s a reason I don’t schedule updates for Saturdays.

Chapter Thirteen was posted around lunchtime on Saturday. It’s there for your enjoyment.

I’m about halfway through writing Chapter Fourteen, but since it’s less than 20% paid for I’m not particularly worried.

I’m in the final phases of sending out Kickstarter rewards, so that’ll be out of the way soon, and I can then give Ishta’s Companion/Relics of War more attention.

Incidentally, in case anyone’s wondering, the Wildside edition of Ithanalin’s Restoration is making progress at last. Two different cover artists disappeared without warning, which delayed everything by months, but a third artist, Charles Bernard, has delivered some sketches, which I’d have gotten a look at tonight if the e-mail had arrived intact… sigh. So maybe it’ll finally see print soon.

And if the money comes in, I should have Chapter Fourteen ready by Wednesday.

Ishta’s Companion: Progress Report Twelve

Chapter Twelve is posted. It was actually paid for a couple of days early, unlike the previous two chapters.

Chapter Thirteen is nowhere near paid for, but it has a small start. And Chapter Thirteen is nowhere near written, but it has a small start — I only finished writing Chapter Twelve on Tuesday afternoon, as I’d spent the weekend at Capclave and have been horrendously busy dealing with Vika’s Avenger, which is done, but I still need to send out a couple of hundred rewards. The first batch of finished books is sitting in a box, waiting to go to the post office.

I talked to John Betancourt, publisher of Wildside Press, at Capclave, and we settled on Relics of War as the eventual title, replacing Ishta’s Companion. I’m not going to change anything in mid-serial, though.

Let’s see, was there anything else? Nothing comes to mind. Hope you guys like the new chapter.

Ishta’s Companion: Progress Report Eleven

Chapter Eleven is now posted; it wasn’t paid for until about noon. I was dealing with my lunch and with computer problems, so it didn’t get posted until forty minutes later.

A little more has come in since, but Chapter Twelve is still a long way from being paid for. It’s also a long way from being written — I’m only a page or two in. The next scene will be very easy to write, though, so I should be able to get it done in time with no problem.

In the past I’ve always maintained a margin of at least a couple of chapters, usually four or five, but this time I haven’t managed that. I’ve been over-committed, what with wrapping up the Kickstarter campaign, and publishing Stuart Hopen’s Warp Angel, and family trips to New England and Canada, and assorted other distractions. After Capclave this weekend, though, I should have everything except the holidays out of the way and be able to catch up on writing.

The slow income is more of a problem, really. Many readers don’t seem to be enthusiastic about this story, and others don’t seem to even be aware of it, though I’ve been making announcements everywhere I can think of. Where do fantasy readers hang out that I haven’t hit?

As for the story, I don’t see it as slow-moving because everything so far has been establishing the characters and their situation, and it’s not intended to be action-adventure — most Ethshar stories aren’t. The pace should be picking up soon, though.

Someone commented that we’re ten chapters into a story that I said would run twenty, and not much has happened; leaving aside any quibbles about whether much has happened, I really don’t know how long this one’s going to be. That twenty chapter estimate may turn out to be way low. Or not; I really don’t know. What I think of as “Part One” will be wrapping up in a couple of chapters, and I have no idea how long Part Two (of two) will be.

Well, anyway, Chapter Eleven is up.

Ishta’s Companion: Progress Report Ten

Okay, I’m back from vacation and once again have full computer access, rather than a slow and balky wi-fi connection on an ancient laptop. I did get Chapter Ten written and posted; it went up a few hours late because it wasn’t fully paid for until Wednesday morning, but it went up.

I wrote slightly less than half of Chapter Eleven while on vacation, mostly on the train on the way home, and you may be concerned that it’s less than half, but then, it’s slightly less than half paid for, as of a few minutes ago. I still have a couple of days to get it done.

This serial does not seem to have evoked the same enthusiasm as the earlier ones; I’m not sure whether it’s because the novelty has worn off, or because this story isn’t grabbing readers, or because I’ve somehow failed to reach readers to let them know it’s going on, or some combination of the above, but it’s not taking off. I’m therefore coming to the conclusion that it may be time to give this system up, and switch to one of the more direct crowdfunding methods, such as Kickstarter.

Or maybe give Ethshar a rest for awhile. To be honest, while I have several more Ethshar novels plotted out, none of them feel like anything I must write. There’s plenty of other stuff I want to work on.

I expect that I’ll come back to Ethshar eventually, though. And of course, I do intend to finish this one.