Solo motorcycle travel has been a part of my life since 2007. I began writing my first fantasy novel in 2011-ish and published it in 2013. (I’ve been writing fiction since I was in junior high school.) The overlap of these two activities is not coincidental. Travel, especially solo, has always been an inspirational activity to me, even as a kid.
Seeing new scenery, from the topography and way the land flows up and down and along rivers and shorelines, to the flora of an area be it sparse and blanched or lush and green, to even the weather as it changes as you crest a hill or as the sun rises or sets, has been a constant source of creative thoughts and ideas.
I can look at a wooded hillside and imagine a troupe of orcs living in a cave amidst the trees, or I can see in my mind’s eye a dragon perched atop a rocky vista surveying its hunting grounds. Hiking trails inspire thoughts of a fierce battle to the death between a man and the beast that pounced upon him from behind a tree.
If you read my books, you may notice that weather and terrain get a little extra descriptive boost amidst the text. The lay of the land and the foliage as well as the skies above are almost another character unto themselves, playing out their impact on the activities — or even survival — of my characters.
It’s surprising that when I travel and meet new people, they have a minimal impact on my creative muse. Sometimes I’ll hear a line of dialogue between people sitting near me in a small town cafe, or I’ll catch a glimpse of someone’s face as they struggle through a personal trial or endeavor. Or occasionally a stranger-that-becomes-a-friend lends inspiration in the unusual spelling of their name.
People rarely inspire me, though, but the places I go and see when I travel never fail to juice my muse to new heights.
Take a look at this photo of an abandoned church I took during a recent road trip. What does it inspire in you? Who utilizes that structure in your creative mind? What role does it play in your story’s possible evolution?
This article describes the methods I use and the steps I follow that have proven to be very effective at avoiding writer’s block and at meeting deadlines. This process is efficient, methodical, and productive. If you follow this approach, it is very reasonable to expect that you can write an 80,000-word fiction novel from concept to publication-ready in less than five months.
Prepare to be Creative
When the muse hits, be prepared. Keep a notebook or note-taking app handy (personal preference) at all times. Jot down even the smallest ideas that come to mind, whenever they happen — don’t rely on your memory alone.
I keep my notebook nearby when watching movies or listening to music. These activities give me ideas for character names or traits. I also find my muse when traveling. Seeing diverse scenery and meeting new people often provides inspiration for my biggest and best ideas.
Find your muse and keep your notebook handy for when creativity strikes.
Allow Creativity to Happen – Creative Place and Mindset
Find a place where you can focus on creativity without distractions. It’s not as important to find a particular day or time, as that is often out of your control. If you know that you only have an hour a day, or a few specific hours on a weekend, allocate that time and keep it sacred.
Get into your creative space and remove every distraction possible. Are you familiar with the way your brain says “Let’s talk!” as soon as you crawl into bed at night? That’s because your brain has your undivided attention. Use that technique to let your creativity be in charge. Simulate (metaphorically) that state of being under the covers, the lights off, comfortable — and free of distractions.
If you get your best ideas lying in bed, keep your notebook nearby. It’s not uncommon for nocturnal ideas to disappear by morning; don’t rely on being able to remember them.
Write down what comes to mind. Don’t filter yourself. Don’t worry about punctuation or spelling or anything formal. Just get your thoughts down on paper. Use position on the page to your advantage if the juxtaposition between ideas means something to you. Draw doodles if that helps. The whole point is to get a raw capture of what’s in your brain without imposing the distractions of formality.
Tip: I prefer a quiet room with a paper notebook rather than a computer, because it’s too tempting to check email or social media.
Give Shape To Your Ideas
The next step is to go back into your creative space but be ready to be slightly more organized. This will be a bit more of a problem-solving session rather than a purely creative time.
Read over your captured ideas and start to think about these things:
Characters — Who is your protagonist and who is your antagonist?
Events — What are the key, high-level events that will happen to your main characters?
Locations — Where will these events occur?
Spend a bit more care writing down your ideas. Don’t be afraid to use short sentences or even paragraphs if the mood strikes, but avoid being completely random or needlessly verbose. The point of this session is to give your raw ideas some initial shape and flow.
The whole purpose of this phase is to flesh out your raw ideas, with the end goal of turning it into a plot event list (an outline).
Define your Characters
This phase of the process is reiterative. I will often spend a few sessions focusing just on character development. I want to really get to know my characters and will write 1-2 page biographies about them. These bios will include physical descriptions, noteworthy events from their history, and personality traits. I’ll define their fears, ambitions, passions, aversions, likes and dislikes, enemies and friends, relatives, etc. Any detail about my character that might come up in the story ahead is noted, as well as anything that will inform how I write them — their mannerisms, way of speaking, etc. This character development is much like an actor getting into the head of the role they will portray. The only difference is you are creating that character from scratch, not mimicking an existing person.
Location, location, location!
Locations are like characters. I write descriptions of where they are located in my world and any pertinent or likely facts that may come up, such as population, elevation, climate, and prominent historical facts. I also like to define the location’s character. Is it lawless or does it have authoritarian policing? Does it have the smell of nearby swamps or industry? Are the residents matter-of-fact or carefree and joyous? Great writers let the environment their characters dwell within have a personality of its own, taking on its own character. It’s like the seasoning you add to a dish to make it taste that much better.
What Happens to Whom
Events are the things that happen to your characters as they move about in your environment. It also represents the order of things as they occur. Not every story is linear in how events are presented, so pay attention to the order of events as they actually happened. It’s okay to reveal events in a non-sequential order if you have a reason for it — does it serve the story? See the Tarantino film, “Pulp Fiction” for an example of non-linear storytelling.
Continue to flesh out your characters, locations, and events until you have an adequate amount of detail for your story.
Plot Event List
The purpose of this phase is to create a plot event list. It is a series of statements that describe each scene of your book, listed in the order they will appear in your manuscript.
Review your notes from the previous phase, paying special attention to your events. Write each event as a single sentence with a brief supporting paragraph to provide a little extra detail.
These sentences and paragraphs will become your scenes. You will write your book one scene at a time, helping focus your mind on what is at hand without being distracted or intimidated by the overall scale of your story.
Each scene statement and supporting paragraph should contain enough information to get your brain focused on what needs to be written. The scenes you write can end up being as short as a few paragraphs or many pages. The point is to keep each scene self-contained and about a single event as much as possible. It is reasonable to have between three and eight scenes per chapter, but don’t sweat it too much if you intentionally go above or below that number if it makes sense to do so.
The primary purpose of scenes is to break the book into manageable chunks as an aid to writing.
The final step is to organize your scenes into chapters. Although you may not have a specific number of words or pages per scene, try to accomplish these two objectives:
Keep chapters at roughly the same length.
Phrase or arrange your scenes in the order that makes the most sense for the story.
Once you have your plot event list completed and organized into chapters, it’s now time to start writing the book itself. You should already have bios written for each of your main characters, your locations are well laid out and adequately described, and you know all the key events that will occur and the order they will happen — and the order they will appear in your story.
Start with your first scene. Read your scene statement (single sentence) and supporting paragraph. Read the bios of the characters that will be acting in this scene and review them. Like an actor preparing for a scene, get into the mindset of the characters and understand their motivations.
Without trying to edit on the fly, begin writing the scene. Don’t worry too much about the overall story — you already have that figured out.
A great tip is to compose the first scene of the book to be something that is short, snappy, and catches the reader’s attention without being overly informative. Raise questions but provide no answers, only hints. Give the reader a reason to read the next scene.
Now that you’re started, you will discover how all the prep work and processes really help you become a productive writer.
Hone Your Process
Find specific days and times during the week when you can write. Be as consistent as possible. I personally write on weekend mornings before the rest of the household is awake. I am focused, not distracted or worried about things, the house is quiet, and I don’t run the risk of other events during the day ruining my schedule.
If you only have an hour to write every other Thursday evening, so be it. Do what works for you, but be consistent. Set that time aside and make sure everyone who might take you away from it knows that you are unavailable and not to be disturbed. Period. Non-negotiable.
Even though you are properly writing your book now, this phase is equal parts creativity and production. You’ve already done a great deal of the legwork on your story. You know what’s going to happen to whom and where it will take place. All you’re doing now is filling in the details.
Because you are only writing one scene at a time, you’ve taken a huge undertaking and broken it down into manageable, easy to chew tasks.
How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.
Avoid the urge to edit yourself as you go. It’s not uncommon for writers to spend a needless amount of time writing and rewriting their opening paragraphs over and over again, spending more time working the backspace key than any other. Don’t do that. It’s like driving with the emergency brake on.
Our brains work in different ways depending on the circumstance. You will learn — if you don’t already know — when you are most creative, when you are most productive (they aren’t always the same), and when you are the most critical. These can take place at completely different times of day or days of the week, or even in different locations. I like to take a notebook to pubs and jot down my brainstorming ideas, but would never take my laptop to the same place for primary composition or editing. It just wouldn’t work for me.
Write in one session, and set aside another session to go back and read what you’ve written and give it a brief edit. Make them separate efforts. I’ll usually spend Saturday morning writing, often 2,000-5,000 words, sometimes more. I’ll then spend Sunday morning reading over what I wrote the day before. Sometimes I’ll review and edit on weeknights, but not often and not usually for long periods of time, typically an hour or less.
The following writing session, skim over the previous scene or two just to get a sense for where you left off. Read your next scene’s statement and supporting paragraph, read your pertinent bios and location descriptions, and start writing.
This is a highly productive process and you’ll be amazed at how many words you can write per week. It can be easier to produce six scenes of 8,000 words total than a single chapter of the same length. It’s a psychological thing, where you get mini-rewards throughout your sessions rather than bigger but delayed gratification at some seemingly distant point on the future.
Editing and Post-production
You have an editor, right? You’re not editing your own work, are you? Sure, you’re reviewing your scenes as you go along and making changes, but that’s not what I mean by editing. An editor is another person who’s sole job is to help your writing be the best it can be. They don’t write for you, they refine you.
Editing is a different skill than writing. The best athletes don’t always make the best coaches, and the best coaches aren’t always the best athletes. Editors are similar to coaches in that regard. Writing the story is your job. Making sure your story is conveyed in the best way possible is your editor’s job.
There are different types of editors, and there are different ways to work with them.
I break down editors into two types, and yes, they can exist in the same person. I call them story editors and line editors. I’ve been fortunate to work with an editor that performs both functions remarkably well.
A story editor makes sure your character development maintains the best flow and pace, and they keep you from changing the rules without realizing it. For example, a good story editor might say something like, “In chapter 17, scene two, you have the main character wielding their sword in their left hand, yet back in chapter 3, they held it in their right. Are they right- or left-handed? Ambidextrous?” They keep you on track. (This may seem like a trivial detail, but readers pick up on little things like that and will ding you in reviews for it.)
Story editors will also let you know if you are being overly expository (you’re telling the reader what’s going on instead of showing them) or if you need to expand what’s happening in a scene. They have opinions about what’s lacking, what’s glaring, and areas that could use improvement, but they often leave it to you to figure out how to solve these problems. Remember, the story is your job, they’re just helping you make the expression of that story the best it can possibly be. You won’t always agree with your story editor, but never do or say anything that might discourage them from being able to be honest with you. You’re paying them for their honesty. Value it.
Quick note:Editors are people, too, and some people are jerks. There’s a difference between giving honest feedback and being an asshole. Make sure you get along with your editor and don’t compromise your emotional health over it, even if they’re technically good at what they do.
Line editors will review your grammar, sentence structure, spelling, and other mechanics of your words, but won’t get involved in story or plot or how things feel.
Now that I’ve described the two types of editors, and hoping that you can find both skillsets in the same person (it’s cheaper that way), how you work with your editor is important.
There are two main ways to work with your editor. You can work a few chapters at a time, or write the whole book before your editor sees a single word of it.
As I mentioned previously, I write on weekends. I compose on Saturday, then review and refine my work on Sunday. I then pass along to my story editor everything I’ve completed over that weekend. They have the week to review what I’ve written and give me feedback. They often will send me a Word document with annotations noted within either through Track Changes functionality, or color coding/highlighting. They don’t correct my spelling or grammar, unless I am using an odd spelling or capitalization for something, in which case they might ask if it’s deliberate.
I’ll either spend an evening late in the week making any changes based on their suggestions, or I’ll spend the first part of my Saturday morning on rewrites if their suggestion warrant it.
This often equates to one to three chapters being written, reviewed, edited, and revised per week.
There are some benefits to this stepped approach. If my story editor has strong feelings about where things are going with a character’s development, or a side character has a lot of unfulfilled promise, they’ll often point this out. It can make me stop and think about my original story idea, and based on their feedback, I may decide to alter the planned events or character development points. I’ve also dropped entire chapters before because, based on my story editor’s feedback, they either weren’t adding anything to the story, or they just didn’t make sense. Changing the order of events can come up, too.
It’s important to keep in mind that I don’t share my plot event list with my story editor ahead of time. I want to get their feedback as a reader of the story, with their opinion fresh and untainted by me spoiling the story ahead of time.
“I really look forward to seeing what happens between Jane and John in the next chapter,” is something you want to hear from your editor.
Remember, give your reader a reason to turn every page and see what happens next.
Congratulations! After repeating this process chapter by chapter, you have completed the first draft of your story. You should not anticipate any significant rewrites, only minor revisions that don’t affect the plot much, if at all.
Once I have iteratively worked with my story editor through all the chapters, I will often leave my book alone for a week or two and not look at it or touch it. This is to give myself a sense of fresh eyes. I will then begin reading through my completed draft from page one. If I see misspellings or weird grammar, I’ll fix it, but otherwise I’m trying to get a reader’s perspective of the story as a whole.
Pay attention to the song, not the notes. Does it make you tap your feet or want to dance?
I will make notes about character development and key events, and decide as I go along if I feel they are serving the overall story that I wanted to tell. Is the story eliciting the emotions I hoped to create in my reader? Is it boring me? During this read-through, you should get a sense for parts that drag or go too fast.
Sometimes removing something can be just as useful as adding something new.
Once I have read through the entire manuscript, and made any revisions that I felt were necessary, I’ll turn the book over to my story editor for their full read-through.
I’ll review their suggestions and make any changes I feel necessary, and will communicate any things I disagreed with and why. They often give suggestions or feedback that can help me find a better approach to further improve the story.
Once those changes are completed, I’ll hand the entire manuscript over to my line editor (or the same editor if it’s the same person). This is where they fix all the typos and grammar and make the story mechanically sound. They will not be giving advice about plot, character development, or anything like that. Unless you have a very specific and deliberate reason not to, accept their edits. It is their job to focus on the notes and make sure a B-flat sounds like a B-flat; they won’t be focusing on the overall song.
Converting your story into an eBook or formatting it for paperback publication is beyond the scope of this effort. But, I will remind you that once you’ve got your book into Kindle or Nook format, or get your first proof copy in paperback, give it another read. Pay the money to get your line editor to review it in those formats as well. Trust me, you’ll still find a typo or two, and you don’t want a stranger who paid to buy your book to let you know in their Goodreads or Amazon review.
Tip: Hire a cover designer. Unless you’re a graphic designer, don’t cheap out by designing your book cover yourself, even with those widgets offered by Amazon and the like. Cheap covers make readers think the book is unworthy of their time.
Using this process, I have written four novels between 65k and 105k words in four months, each. I spent roughly the same amount of time in the three phases of planning, composition, and editing/production. In one case, the primary composition phase was the shortest, taking only 30 days.
I want to point out that I am describing here the process that has worked best for me. Everyone is different and you should expect to find your own changes and tweaks to this process to make it work best for you. If you’re one of those people who write on a daily basis, you can expect to reach your goal of a completed manuscript in a shorter amount of time (depending on the availability of your editor, of course).
Be open to various ways of working, but ultimately do what works best for you. Find your own rhythm and path. Writing a book is hard. Selling a book is even harder, but that’s another topic for another day.
I’ve met people that could sell sand to someone dying of thirst. They thrive on the engagement and hunt of getting other people to buy what they’re selling. I’m not like that. The idea of selling raises my anxiety and discomfort level and it is something I unconsciously and consciously avoid.
On the other hand, one of the most common reactions I hear from people who found out I’ve written a novel (four novels, actually, with a fifth in the works) is, “Wow, that’s amazing. I could never do that.”
There are a lot of things more difficult than writing a book — getting a college degree, moving across country to live in a new state, getting married, getting divorced, coming out of the closet, etc. Although difficult, these things seldom get the same reaction. “I could never do that.”
Writing books is easy. Selling books is hard. I repeatedly struggle with the “Author as Brand” role I must play as a self-published author. The constant presence on social media, blogging, self-promotion through speaking engagements, pursuit of book signings, etc. is an ongoing and tiring activity. It drains me and feels Sisyphean in scale and scope.
Many also are under the impression that if you get a traditional publishing deal, the publishing company does all the marketing for you. All you have to do is cash your advance and royalty checks and show up to book signings and guest appearances on The Today Show. The sad truth is, even traditionally published authors have to maintain their own author brand and handle the bulk of their marketing effort.
If you are one of those rare few who feel like you have the motivation and energy to write a book, be warned that writing a book is easy compared to selling a book.
My advice is to partner with someone who likes to sell, someone who lives to market. Someone who does it in their spare time simply because it’s fun. Link up with someone who can sell snow to a Minnesotan and has done so repeatedly in the past. Find someone who believes in your vision and talent and writing prowess and becomes your champion.
There are probably more 7’+ centers in the NBA than there are people who are equally and adequately skilled at writing and marketing. They are entirely different disciplines and it’s best to find out which you’re good at and focus on that, delegating the other to someone else.
That is a phrase I never anticipated uttering until recently. I’ve always wanted to be an author, even when I was a kid. But it had been a sort of lofty dream without real expectations, kind of like hoping to win the lottery or being able to fly like Superman.
That dream came true, though. And it wasn’t that difficult, either. How?
“Putting a man on the moon wasn’t a miracle, we just decided to go.”
Me writing a novel — or five — wasn’t a miracle, either. I just decided to do it.
This fifth book continues my Taesia series. As a reminder, my vision is to write nine books, all connected, in the form of three trilogies. The first trilogy, The Taesian Chronicles, is completed. This new book will be the second book in the second trilogy (“The Pillars of Taesia”).
Don’t. Just read the books in order and you’ll be fine.
My goal is to get this book completed and available for sale by summer of 2020. Stay tuned.
I’m not sure if it’s a ‘thing’, along the lines of Imposter Syndrome and its ilk, but the drive to do something epic, and to be epic, can get in the way of doing anything at all.
They say the hardest part of a journey is taking the first step. For the most part I don’t have that problem; I can start a book easily enough. Where my challenge comes is when finalizing the plot.
I follow a methodical and phased approach to writing novels. I begin with brainstorming, typically with a pint of beer in my hand (“Beer for creativity, coffee for productivity”). I jot down notes in a composition book in a sort of controlled stream of consciousness. If an idea pops into my head, I write it down after a brief second of “Will this work?” review.
As these ideas flow, they start to form a theme or continuum. They also form into groups. I modify them slightly. I’ll write down an idea, then add, “What if the character did X instead of Y?” Yes, I’ll actually write down those kind of questions.
Like I said, it’s a controlled stream of consciousness.
The brainstorming part is easy, and one of the most enjoyable phases of my writing projects.
My challenge comes when I go back and review my brainstorming notes and start to refine that into a plot event list. This is when I start to second-guess myself and doubt creeps in.
Is it epic enough?
I want my stories to ‘wow’ my readers, not just give them a way to kill time. I also want to write stories that I would want to read. They all do that, I make sure of it. The problem I face is that once I’ve figured out the plot, I know how the story ends. It has lost its sense of surprise and wonder, and as soon as that happens, the story can lose its appeal.
At least to me, anyway.
A part of my emotional hardwiring is to never be satisfied with my creations. There is always room for improvement and refinement. This is something I’ve learned about myself as Director of Product Development at eRep.com, a provider of the Core Values Index psychometric assessment. My CVI profile is Innovator/Banker, and Innovators are notorious refiners. One of our biggest flaws is to keep working on something until it’s perfect, which it never is.
Good enough today is better than perfect tomorrow. And perfection is never achieved. There are people who aren’t impressed by J.R.R. Tolkien or Led Zeppelin or Steven Spielberg. And I’m none of those, but apparently I’d like to be based on what I’m describing here.
I am proud of the books I’ve written. Each is more solid and enjoyable than the last. Perhaps I should do my best and stop worrying about being epic. That is a subjective measure and is purely in the eye of the beholder (or eyes, if you’re a D&D fan).
I’m a little late to the game, but I’m just about to finish watching season 8 of Game of Thrones. After I finished watching episode 4, I wondered if the consumption of a popular fantasy franchise like Game of Thrones would influence my own writing?
Soon I will begin the brainstorming phase of my fifth novel in my Taesian Chronicles series. I typically spend a month, maybe two, writing down creative ideas for plot and characters, then I spend another month refining that into a plot event list (outline). Primary composition usually starts about 4-5 months after the initial ideas start percolating in my brain.
Once I begin writing, I avoid watching TV shows or movies in the fantasy genre, and I read only non-fiction until the book is completed. This is to ensure my creativity is not tainted or unduly influenced by the creative work of others.
Imagine trying to think of one song while listening to another.
Obviously, my creative ideas are influenced in a general sense by the TV, books, and movies I’ve consumed in my life. This is unavoidable. Sometimes I add elements to my stories that are deliberate homages to beloved books or characters from my past. Other times, I knowingly take inspiration from other author’s or filmmaker’s works. My first book, Ohlen’s Arrow, has a particular pace that I felt inspired to honor from Gayle Rivers’ The Five Fingers.
If you are a writer, have you found yourself being influenced by popular media like Game of Thrones? What do you do to fight off unwanted influence by the creativity of others? Or do you knowingly embrace — and perhaps extend — it?
As mentioned previously, I’ve been working on my fourth novel, A Riddle of Scars, since the first of the year. I’m nearing the end of primary composition and hope to have it completed within the next 10 days or so.
My goal is to have the book published and ready for sale by the middle of June, 2019, and so far that goal is very realistic.
In other news, I’m participating in a book signing at Goin’ Gaming in Troutdale. The owners and my friends, Becky and Allen, are hosting the event. It is Saturday May 4th, 2019, beginning at 1 PM. I hope to see you there!
The writing methods of John Irving (The Door in the Floor) and Stephen King (The Shining) couldn’t be more different. Both seem to have strong views about the right way to write. Last year I read King’s, Stephen King on Writing and was blown away when he talked about his writing process, but was even more impacted by how strongly he feels about it.
According to King, organization kills creativity.
John Irving, on the other hand, takes an approach that would make King’s eye twitch in barely contained rage and frustration. Irving’s first action is to write the last line of his book. He then outlines and defines every step that will be taken to lead the reader from page 1 to that culmination.
I developed my own writing style before I knew anything about King and Irving’s methods. In fact, I had never heard of John Irving until I’d already published my second novel. I ran across a YouTube video of a speech he gave where he described his writing process. It almost perfectly mirrors my own.
Later, when I read Stephen King on Writing and I learned how the master does it, I found myself asking, “How is that even possible?” (He starts with a blank page and just writes.) Of course, Stephen King is a writing savant. He could write a 1,000 page novel with one thesaurus tied behind his back.
My process can best be described as organized, linear creativity. I invent my characters and the things that happen to them in a series of brainstorming sessions, then I use an organized, methodical approach to refine those broad ideas into specific details.
When discussing my writing approach with readers and budding authors, I describe it by saying, “I don’t write novels, I write scenes.” This is because I outline my ideas down to the scene level during my planning and organization phase. Then, when it’s time to start cranking out the prose, I only have to write one scene at a time. It is specific, finite, and relatively small. I’m not overwhelmed by the intimidating scale of several hundred blank pages and the pressure of having to come up with a novel’s worth of creativity on the spot.
Most importantly for me, though, is I don’t have the fear that I’ll start down a creative path without knowing it will end well. Because I’ve already determined the plot, sub-plots, character development, protagonist-antagonist conflicts, setting, etc., I can write one scene at a time knowing it will all fit together in the end.
I apologize to my readers and followers for my lack of communication in the last two months. I bought a house and moved, and that has taken up all of my free time since mid-October.
The weather where I live has also been a factor, disrupting schedules and plans and being downright inconvenient.
Now that things are settling down and getting back into a routine, I will be re-engaging in writing activities. I have a fourth book to write, and two existing books to release on paperback. Stay tuned, and thank you for your patience.
After a summer break to refill my muse, and many many hours spent designing and conducting a Dungeons & Dragons campaign to play-test a plot idea, my creative fuel tank is full and I’m ready to get back to writing.
I have begun the conceptual phase of my fourth novel — holy shit, I can’t believe I’m writing a fourth book! — I hope to get my plot event list finished by Thanksgiving at the latest. I’ve confirmed my editor, Alison, will be on-board for the story editing phase, but I will likely need to hire a new copy editor; Alison’s schedule will likely keep her from being available for that phase of the project.
As with my other projects, my target for publication is in Q1 of 2017.
In other news, I am strongly considering releasing each of the first three books in the Taesian Chronicles trilogy as paperbacks. Currently, the only way to get those words in a dead-tree edition is to buy the whole trilogy, The Taesian Chronicles. Stay tuned for updates on this effort.
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Like many fantasy authors, Steve Williamson was introduced to the genre when he played his first game of Dungeons & Dragons. It was during a family camping trip in May, 1980, and as he and two friends sat inside a travel trailer rolling dice and fighting orcs, the air outside became gritty and hard to breath. It was permeated with the fine gray ash spewing out of Mount St. Helens which was erupting just sixty miles away.
Steve now lives in Western Oregon in the shadow of another active volcano, Mount Hood.