Tuesday, November 3, 2015

A Six Year Evolution #amwriting #scifi #romance

How long does it take to get a book from the first words to publication? Well, I've done it as quickly as six months, though that's exceptional for me. But the longest has taken over six years...

Just lately both Laurie and I have been in a fun place called editing hell. For me, it's been round two on Keir's Fall - a sequel so overdue that even I'm tired of waiting for it. Keir's Fall has been through a long and  protracted evolution since I first started writing it back in 2009. Yeah, that's slightly more than six years from the first words to the hopeful release date (as yet still unconfirmed but it's looking like the end of this month. Um, yay?). 

So why has it taken so damn long? Well, Keir's Fall started life as part of the original draft for Keir (book one) back in August 2009. But as I began the first of many revisions on Keir, I quickly realized it was two very separate stories. I split out the second and put it aside, and only after Keir had undergone several rewrites, revisions and critiques, and gone out on submission did I return to book two.

By the time I completed the first full draft of what would become Keir's Fall toward the end of 2010, it was 110K, had 10 POVs, a secondary romance, and the title of Lost Serenity. It was also a complete and utter mess. I didn't realise how much of a mess until I'd been through my first professional edits on Keir with Danielle Fine under Lyrical Press Inc. Boy, did I l learn a lot during those! Even then, I wasn't very confident that Lost Serenity worked as it stood. Over the next couple of years, I stripped out the secondary storyline (thereby halving the number of POVs and intending to one day publish the secondary storyline as a separate book. For those interested and who've read Gethyon, that secondary storyline follows Kauri - his niece and Quin's granddaughter). That cut the total word count to 70K. By this time Dani had left Lyrical Press, but wanted to stay in touch, so I ran Lost Serenity past her and she helped me fix some of the worst of it.

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With Keir now in the wild as of 7th May 2012, I submitted Lost Serenity to Lyrical. Apparently their one remaining SciFi romance editor wasn't interested (not a straight out rejection, but not a 'hell, yes please' either) and with Keir tied to Lyrical, I wasn't sure what else to do. I wasn't confident enough to self publish (aside from not having the money to edit and cover art it) and couldn't imagine another publisher willing to take on a sequel. Keir hadn't been marketed or even labelled as book one of a series. So Lost Serenity sat gathering dust on the virtual shelf. 

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Meanwhile, Gethyon (set in the same universe and featuring Quin, but some twenty years before Keir timewise) released, as did my SFR short Imprint in the Tales from the SFR Brigade. I also self published a SFR short - Terms & Conditions Apply - and tried to find a home for my SFR novella Tethered

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Then my editor and a mutual friend/fellow author decided to start their own publishing house, and wanted both Lost Serenity and Tethered. I was more than happy to sign them up. Unfortunately they were forced to close just a few months later. In the meantime, Lyrical Press Inc sold out to Kensington Books, and I chose not to sign the new contract, receiving my rights back to Keir in January 2014. I decided then I was going to re-release Keir myself and so keep control of my series so I wouldn't be stuck in the same situation of having subsequent books rejected. It meant Lost Serenity, moldering away for so long, could finally go out. By now it had also had a title change, since part of the fix meant 'Serenity' was no longer 'Lost', and to pair it more aptly with book one. So Lost Serenity became Keir's Fall - a 70K trimmed and polished version of its former, convoluted and chaotic self. And now you'll finally get to read it. Well, soon. >_<
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Status Update

Due to a change in circumstances, I now have two novels and one novella in edits with Danielle Fine (my January project got pulled forward). Yeah, I'm a glutton for punishment! Keir's Fall is with Dani after I finally crawled through the second round edits (getting there!), Reunion (the Redemption side story due for release in May 2016) is still currently with me for round one, and the January project is in first round edits with Dani (due for a June release including print). So Keir's Fall will release this year, with the side story releasing May 2016, a novel in June 2016, and another unrelated novella sometime in 2016. Aside from those, I'm currently refusing to even sketch out other plans at this time.

I've decided not to do NaNoWriMo this November due to the amount of editing I have. Once those are done, I have three short stories to finish and another novella to edit and release. 


I'm part of an alien invasion at Allie Ritch's blog HERE on the 7th. Read a snippet from Keir's Fall introducing my antagonist Tyra-Lee.

I'm also one of several authors taking part in a fun event over at Liza O'Connor's blog on the 8th of November - Earth Girls Love Blue Men

To celebrate one year since publication, a print edition of my superhero romance - When Dark Falls - is up for giveaway at Goodreads.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

When Dark Falls by Pippa Jay

When Dark Falls

by Pippa Jay

Giveaway ends November 30, 2015.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter Giveaway
Pippa Jay signing off...

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