Welcome back loyal readers!
It's a gorgeous time of year, isn't it? Everything's still lush and green and yet it's cooled off and dried out and there's just a nip of fall in the morning and evening air. It's perfect weather for outdoor barbecues, Big Ten college football (go Gophers!), and a WIP update from yours truly!
You may recall this post back in February where I said I'd finished my rewrite of To Kill the Goddess. Now I can one up that because I've just recently finished my Beta Draft! That's six months of work for those keeping track. Six months where I edited the heck out of everything, rewrote a few chapters, and generally holed up inside my room for hours on end and disappeared from my wife's life.
Thank God it's over!
I mean seriously, it was a frakking death march.
So what am I up to now? I have to admit, there's a little bit of relaxing going on. One of the big reasons I was making a big push to get done was so that I would have time to watch a bunch of college football without feeling guilty. So I'm doing that. (How about that Jerry Kill, eh?)
I've also been doing some writing. Something new. Something without all the fighting and biting that takes place at the end of a good sci-fi/fantasy novel. It's a little something I've tentatively entitled, "A Red Blooded American Guy and Gal Get Stuck in an Elevator." Yes, it's a little outside my usual genre, okay a lot, and I won't be querying it, but damn is it nice to write something different for once. It's like standing up and stretching after sitting at your work desk for hours on end, only just a wee bit different.
Of course, all this begs the question: Shawn, what are you going to do with this fancy pants novel now that it's done?
I've written a lot of posts about self-publishing, and many of them have ended with me saying how happy I am I am I don't have to decide whether I want to self publish or not. Well, time's kind of running out on that.
So here's what I'm thinking. I'm going to query TKTG. Yes, I'm going to take the plunge, but like everything else I seem to do, I'm not going to do it the traditional way. My query letter is going to say something along the lines of: “Yes, I'm seeking agent representation, but I don't really have any interest in signing a traditional contract with a traditional publisher. I want to self publish, or I want to publish through a publishing house that puts e-book distribution before physical book distribution.”
Yeah, clearly I have to wordsmith that, but you get my drift.
So am I crazy? I don't know. What I do know is that every day I see new tweets about some bookstore or another closing and about how e-books are taking a bigger and bigger slice of the traditional market and that just isn't good. The way I see it, it's simple economics. An industry based on physical book distribution can't exist in today's environment, not without change, and I just don't see enough of that happening. Don't get me wrong, it would be a dream come true to publish with somebody like TOR, but I just don't think I can take that risk right now. Like I said here, my worst fear is that I would sign a contract and then in the 18 to 24 months it would take to get my book on shelves, the industry would fall apart and I'd be left with my book rights wrapped up by a company that was either severely wounded, bankrupt, or worse.
I'm just not gonna do it.
So there you have it, folks. Maybe I'm crazy, but maybe I'm not. All I know, is that I feel like I'm standing at the entrance to a long, dark tunnel that has no visible end and I don't know where I'm going to end up, but it's COOL. I feel like somewhere inside that tunnel is a door and just like Roland Deschain, I'm gonna open it, and it's gonna take me to places I've never been before.