After another spate of readers hating the ending of the Emperor’s Pet, I have rewritten the ending. In the published book, I put in an excerpt from the next book, The Misplaced Prince. After receiving a lot of flack from the ending, I merged the excerpt into the Emperor’s Pet and extended the excerpt scene so the ending is no longer a cliffhanger, but a transition ending that begins Pol’s adventures in the next book. I hope this is a more comfortable ending for those readers who absolutely, positively HATE cliffhangers. To those of you, I yield to your sensitivities, which I actually do share.
After a few reviews and readers pointing out some typos, I decided to put the Disinherited Prince Series under another set of eyes. That’s a gruesome thought if taken literally. It turns out that I read fast and write fast and that technique churns out lots of errors.
One editor was not enough, so all four books plus the Demeron novella have been read again by another editor who takes pride of reading a word at a time. I generally do a markup on a hardcopy proof, but I must have been introducing more mistakes. There were twenty to thirty errors per book, but less for Demeron. Most of those were left out articles (a, an, the). Any words not spelled correctly were the kind not caught by spell checkers (for example, their instead of there)
I am happy to say that the process is over. The books have been corrected. I made no additional writing changes (other than rearranging a few clunky sentences), so I don’t count these as new editions, just cleanup. I did modify the cover titles for A Sip of Magic and The Sleeping God to match the rest of the series.
So, hopefully I’ll turn out better edited books in the future. I always appreciate feedback if readers find errors. I had a review where the reader spotted an abduction that didn’t happen. I reread the book and couldn’t find what they referred to. It’s really hard to spot your own errors, since you generally fix the errors in your mind.
Anyway, I thought you might like to know…
A Sip of Magic has been sent to editing. Pol has a lot of challenges in this story, but he finds new friends amidst the ones he already has. Here’s the cover blurb:
Expecting to resume his studies after a long absence, Pol Cissert is disappointed when he is drafted by the Emperor’s Seeker to infiltrate into Tesna Monastery. His mission is to verify rumors of a new army being raised by the South Salvan King, a man he perceives as an enemy. Pol will face new challenges, not the least of which will be figuring out the mysterious roommate that arrives not long after he learns about the Tesnan’s plans to take over the world.
And here is the cover! The release of A Sip of Magic is targeted just before Christmas.
I finished the first draft and the story came out just fine. I’m now in edit mode and have tweaked the ending and am going through my normal rewrite process. When the draft is done, I like to let it settle a few days and begin to bring the next book into focus. The working title of Book Three is A Sip of Magic, A Taste of the Sword. I know, I know it’s a bit long, but it is what Pol does as a pattern-master.
I intended on having Pol spend a few years in the monastery after each major adventure, but that’s not working out. Pol will just have to remain precocious for a few more books.
I’m anticipating a mid-October release for The Monk’s Habit.
I am making progress with getting Sunstone and Bloodstone out. Sunstone is ready to go. Got the final proof today. Perhaps there might be the first chapter of Bloodstone inserted at the back. Still thinking about that.
I’ve just about got the cover of Bloodstone finalized. I’ve got a couple edit runs to go and that one
will be ready. I’m afraid I’ll need it because Darkstone is likely to get a very thorough examination.
Anyway, here is the Bloodstone cover. I like it and I don’t think there will be much change before the third book in the Warstone Quartet is finished. The Bloodstone is a teardrop (or a blood drop, if you will) shape. Of the two swords, one is polished and represents youth and the other is well worn and represents age.
So I had problems getting Quest of the Wizardess turned into an epub. It turns out that the recommended method for creating an acceptable document for Smashwords doesn’t work with simple epub conversion tools. The primary problem is creating a table of contents using bookmarks and hyperlinks.
I ended up buying a epub creation and editing tool called Jutoh. It was recommended at a writers conference I attended last fall (IndieReconLive). I had to pick apart all of the bookmarks and blast through all of the hyperlinking. Along the way, I eliminated drop caps, which also got in the way. After I did all of that work, I was rewarded with a clean epub file which I was able to upload to iBooks.
Since I do my own publishing through CasiePress, I’ve had to learn to create job streams to accommodate various input engines. So now, I create in Scrivener. I export that to MS Word and use their spelling and grammar checker. Then I export that into InDesign for the creation of my print file for Createspace.
For ebook distribution, I’ll now export back to MS Word (Jutoh likes .docx files) and reformat for ebooks. That becomes my gold standard for input into Jutoh. For Smashwords and Amazon, I’ll create a separate file that has the bookmark/hyperlink table of contents and input .doc files. For Kobo, Barnes & Noble and iBook, I’ll create an epub in Jutoh and submit that.
Lots of work, but I do that to have better control over my distribution.
I ended up in a stall getting Quest of the Wizardess out. It needed a few more edit passes. I tried to generate an acceptable epub for iBooks, but failed. So I’ve got it out on every outlet except iBooks. That will come in January after I get some epub editing software.
I have a proof copy of Moonstone in my aged, wrinkled hands and am over halfway through. It looks like it will emerge into the world in the first few weeks of January. Then it’s on to Sunstone. It’s been a while since I have touched the draft, so it will be fun to edit.