Ishta’s Companion/Relics of War: Progress Report Twenty-Three

Hello, folks!

Relics of War is published!

If you’re a donor to the serial and entitled to a copy of the ink-on-paper edition, you should have received e-mails (yes, plural) nagging you to confirm your mailing address. If you have not received such e-mails, please contact me. I’m in the process of mailing out the donor copies, and would really like to have it done by Christmas without getting any returned as undeliverable.

E-books haven’t been sent out yet, but should be soon.


Oh — and I still have no plans for further serials.

The End of An Era (or at least a serial)

Well, so much for that.

I have received and approved the contracts for Relics of War, a.k.a. Ishta’s Companion, and will sign them when I find a pen. This means I need (per Wildside’s request) to shut down the online serial.

Said serial got twenty-two chapters into a twenty-four-chapter novel; very disappointing. I think this pretty much settles the possibility of doing any more serials this way; they aren’t worth the trouble anymore.

I’m not sure yet what this means for the future of Ethshar, or my writing career in general. Given the way things have gone for the past five years or so, I think I’m effectively retired as a novelist, whether I want to be or not. Not that I’m going to quit writing, but I’m no longer necessarily going to consider it my full-time job. I’ll continue writing as a hobby. Haven’t yet decided whether to look for another job or not — I have enough investments that I don’t really need to work anymore, though money will be tight if I don’t. (I’m not counting my wife’s income in this calculation; with that, we’ll actually be quite comfortable.)

I’d be interested in feedback, folks — suggestions, advice, comments, anything.

Ishta’s Companion/Relics of War: Progress Report Twenty-Two

To my astonishment, Chapter Twenty-Two is now online.

I fudged a little, actually; it’s really about $5 short, but come on, it’s just five bucks. Close enough.

That leaves two chapters (and the free epilogue) to go.

Meanwhile, I’ve delivered the finished (I think) novel to Wildside and am awaiting the contract. One way or another, this one’s almost done, and I have serious doubts about whether I’ll bother with another serial.

Thanks to everyone who’s donated!

Ishta’s Companion/Relics of War: Progress Report Twenty-One

Look! Up in the sky!

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s Chapter Twenty-One!

Yes, Chapter Twenty-One — strange visitor from another reality, gifted with powers and abilities beyond those of ordinary prose that it uses to wage a never-ending battle for truth, justice, and the Ethsharitic way!

It did get completely paid for, but there’s only about a buck and a half over toward Chapter Twenty-Two.

Three chapters to go, but only if they’re paid for before I sign the contract. Which I don’t have yet, because I wanted to finish the second draft first, and I’ve only just started on it.

Ishta’s Companion/Relics of War: Progress Report Nineteen

Thanks to one very large donation and a few smaller ones, Chapter Nineteen is now posted for all to read, and Chapter Twenty is paid for but not posted yet. (I’m thinking I’ll probably post it Tuesday.)

The serial might yet be finished. We’ll see.

Not much else to say; I haven’t started work on the second draft yet. Wildside says I can have a contract whenever I’m ready, but they aren’t in a rush.

Oh, they also mentioned that the sell-through for The Sorcerer’s Widow in bricks-&-mortar Barnes & Noble outlets has been disappointing; if you happen to see copies in your local B&N, do whatever you can to help them find homes. Returns won’t help Wildside’s bottom line or my prospects of getting future titles into real-world stores.

(Online sales have done just fine; it’s only traditional bookstores where it hasn’t moved.)

Thanks for your support, everyone.

Ishta’s Companion/Relics of War: Progress Report Eighteen

Chapter Eighteen of Relics of War, a.k.a. Ishta’s Companion, has now been posted. I’m actually still $1.04 short, but there’s no point in being obsessive about it.

I’ve also posted an announcement concerning the serial.

The first draft is completely written; it runs twenty-four chapters and a brief epilogue, totaling 73,115 words. I haven’t started the second draft yet; been busy with non-writing stuff.

Can’t think of anything else that needs mentioning. Thanks to everyone who’s donated!

Ishta’s Companion/Relics of War: Progress Report Seventeen

Chapter Seventeen is posted, at long last.

I’m a couple of pages from finishing Chapter Twenty, and I estimate the novel will run about twenty-two chapters, give or take. I should be able to get the rest written in a few days if I stop letting myself get distracted.

Of course, then it will need to be revised and all the usual stuff.

You know, folks who donated $20 for the paper edition are getting something of a bargain — it’s running longer than I expected. I cut it from $25 to $20 because I thought it would only run about 50,000 words, and it’s going to be well over 60,000. Absolutely not a problem, though; thanks for the support.

I think that’s about it, really.

Ishta’s Companion/Relics of War: Progress Report Sixteen

I am pleased to report that Chapter Sixteen has finally been posted — we hit the magic number at 10:15 last night. I hadn’t been expecting it, so I didn’t have the files ready to go, but they’re up now.

(I had somehow recorded three donations in the wrong category in my records, which I caught last night when I realized the totals didn’t match my memory, but it wouldn’t have much affected when the chapter went up — those three would not have put it over the top without yesterday’s contributions. But if I’d had them right I might have realized how close it was and had the files ready.)

Chapter Eighteen isn’t finished yet; we were on vacation last week, so I only got a single page written, and before that the holidays and illness were delaying things. I’m hoping that now all that stuff is out of the way I’ll be more productive.

Meanwhile, Tor has been reissuing my books in trade paperback. The new edition of A Young Man Without Magic has been available for a month, and I’ve received my author copies of the new edition of Dragon Weather, which should be out next week.

Hope all of you who were in the area affected by last week’s “polar vortex” are okay; we missed it. By pure luck, our Caribbean vacation took us away from all that record cold.

(For those of you overseas, or who live in the unaffected portions of the U.S. and somehow weren’t paying attention, last week brought most of the U.S. and Canada several days of arctic conditions, with record low temperatures.)

Anyway. It’s a new year, and it’s started well for me; I hope it’s as good for all of you.

Ishta’s Companion/Relics of War: Lack of Progress Report Three

We’re still $61.00 short of posting Chapter Sixteen, and what with the holidays, house guests, and health issues (I’ve had a series of colds and bugs for almost a month now), I’m still only partway through writing Chapter Eighteen. This is further complicated by the realization that the ending in my original outline (there’s half a page of outline left to cover) isn’t very good, and I’d like to devise a better one.

But I’m going to finish this, and it probably won’t take too much longer. Posting it all… well, we’ll see, but I’m not optimistic.

I’m going to be doing some traveling, and while I’m taking my computer with me, I probably won’t have time to get all that much work done. If we do get that $61.00 in, I still may not get Chapter Sixteen posted until I get back on the 12th. We’ll see.

A minor bit of Ethshar news: The new edition of Ithanalin’s Restoration is scheduled for June.

A less-definite bit of Ethshar news: I’ve been plotting the next Ethshar novel, Stone Unturned, when Ishta’s Companion is being uncooperative. It’s beginning to feel as if it wants to be three or four separate stories instead of one big one. There would still be a novel with the main plot, but a couple of subplots don’t seem to want to merge in and might wind up as separate novelets, novellas, or even novels in their own right, though they’d still intersect the main story for a couple of chapters. It’ll be interesting to see how it all works out — but this means I probably can’t do it as a serial, even if I wanted to.

And I need to finish Ishta’s Companion first, anyway.