Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Even More Covers...

One of the funnest parts of being an author is getting fancy book covers. My publishers in the UK must've understood this, because they gave me not one but two different covers for each book in the Trylle Trilogy.

I'm going to be posting them in a second, because they're awesome and lovely, but first I want to explain to you what they are. These are the covers for the Trylle Trilogy editions that are coming out in the UK, Australia, India, South Africa, and Asia. Below each cover, I'll also be putting the release dates, since it's slightly different than the US release dates.

So... here they are!

These are the "adult" covers for the trilogy:
Coming January 5, 2012

Coming March 1, 2012

Coming April 26, 2012

These are the "young adult" covers for the trilogy:
YA Edition Coming January 5, 2012

YA Edition Coming March 1, 2012

YA Edition Coming April 26, 2012

You may ask yourself, "adult" version? I thought these were all young adult books? They are, kinda. But my publishers in the UK came up with the idea to add different bonus content the adult books geared more toward adults and different content for young adults. Both versions include the brand-new bonus short story, but in addition to that, they also have different interviews with me and a few other things.

I do want to clarify that when I say "adult," I don't mean x-rated. It's just information that adults might find more appealing than young adults. But no matter which edition you get, the story will be the same, the bonus story will be there, and the extra content will be fun and informative. And the cover will be pretty.

So what do you guys think? What's your favorite cover? Mine is probably the YA one for Switched. Or maybe the YA one for Ascend. But I don't know. They're all lovely.

Monday, November 21, 2011

UPDATED (AGAIN) (AND AGAIN): Important Information

UPDATED 2/16/15 (with just this clarification at the top).

I want to clarify the scenario. Imagine you are a paraplegic who desperately wants to walk but you are unable to. Now imagine that people are always saying to you, "Why aren't you walking? It's been ages since you've last walked. You're just lazy. You should be walking! And you're still using your arms. If you cared about me at all, you'd be walking, but I know that you don't since you're still using your arms."

This is me with the MBA series. What happened is that initially, when I was first writing, I would hop from one series to another. I did this because I felt frantic. I felt like if I didn't try everything and have multiple series going that I would fail. I felt like I had to write everything all at once or I'd lose readers, and I'd lose my momentum and everything would come crashing down.

I know realize this was a mistake on my part, and it's not when that I plan to make again. (I do now finish series in their entirety before I begin to publish them).

But what happened is that as I wrote more, I grew and changed as a writer. And as I grew, I grew away from the MBA series and the characters. I no longer enjoyed them. And I want to enjoy them. I wish that I loved them the way I once did, and that the book would flow the way it did.

But whenever I sit down to write it, I just have this nagging feeling that it's not good, that the characters aren't good, and I'm terrified that you (the reader) will sense the disconnect and be left with something that is overall disappointing to you.

Much like the paraplegic who can't walk but can use their arms, I can still write other series, because these are new characters that I don't have the same problem with with the MBA series.

And it's also not an issue of not knowing the plot - the book is already outlined. So again, like a paraplegic who  knows how to walk but isn't capable of it, I'm just not connecting with the characters.

It's not that I don't care about readers or the MBA series, or that I don't want to write. I would LOVE to be able to write it. To just have it finished for everyone. To be able to move on from it and have it complete.

It is just not something that I feel capable of doing right now, not in a way that I believe readers would truly want. I know that that sucks, but that's just what the situation is right now, and I'm sorry.

UPDATED 1/19/2015: (new info right here at the top)

I'm basically updating this to say that I haven't forgotten about you or My Blood Approves. I get the question a lot (like A LOT), "Where is the final book?" And I think part of the reason I get a lot is because people are afraid that I've forgotten about the book or the readers.

I have not. I don't think about daily, but I would say that I do think about weekly. I do have a fantasy in my head, a very exciting one, where I re-edit the first four books and the novella, and get new covers, and release Swear at the same time in a big exciting flurry for all the fans of the MBA series.

That is something I would like to do someday. But unfortunately, that day is not today. I promise it will be a day, but right now, the obstacles I have to overcome with the series haven't resolved (and believe me when I say, I have been working to resolve them).

I also promise you that as soon as - and I mean the very second that Swear is ready for publication - I will tell everyone everywhere. I will post about it nonstop. I haven't forgotten about you, and I won't forget to tell you. That's all I can add to this right now.

UPDATED 10/3/12 (new info at bottom of post)

I've been writing this blog in my head for a few weeks, trying to figure out how I was going to break the news to you guys. That's when I made the decision, but I wanted to wait until I'd figured out how to tell you before I told you.

And I want to preface this by saying I know it sucks. It does suck. There's no denying it. But sometimes the suckiest road is the still the best one to take.

So here's the news: I do not know when Swear, the final book in the My Blood Approves series is coming out. But it won't be anytime soon.

Now let me explain why: I can't write it. I published Wisdom over 14 months ago, and I've been working on Swear on and off since then. But everything I write feels wrong. I feel disconnected from the characters. It feels rushed and empty.

I started writing it three different times, each time deleting what was already written. I set it aside to work on different books, hoping when I came back to it I would feel differently. But so far I haven't.

A few weeks ago, I was trying to come up with different options just so I could put something out for you guys, but in my heart, I felt like it was terrible. I was trying to rush out something terrible because I wanted to meet an arbitrary to deadline that I'd given to you.

And that's when I decided I couldn't do it. It would be unfair to you to put out a book just to put out a book. It's a series that a lot of you have come to really love, and it's disrespectful to you, the characters, and the series itself if I don't put out the best final book that I possibly can.

Right now, for whatever reason, I can't.

I am sorry that I didn't tell you sooner. That's my biggest regret. That, and ever setting a release date for a self-published book. But I kept thinking that any moment, I'd be able to just get it, and the story would flow, the way it did with the other books. But it hasn't.

I do have the outline written for the last book, and I considered publishing that (for free), but I still think there's hope for me writing the final book. And publishing the outline would be the last ditch effort to give you closure. One way or another, I guarantee that you will find out how the series ends.

I do apologize, but I honestly think this is the best thing I can do for fans of the series. I would much rather not publish anything than publish a book that doesn't live up to your expectations.

Also, to prevent this from happening again, I will not be setting any future release dates for Swear. I won't talk about it at all - not until it's actually ready and about to be published. I don't want to get you hyped for something until I'm absolutely positive it's going to happen.

I am really sorry, and I know it sucks. I'm mad at myself too. But this is honestly the best I think I can do for you.

UPDATE #1: I think I need to clarify the following things. My problems with writing Swear aren't because a lack of ideas, writer's block, or because of my publishers. I know exactly how the book ends. I don't believe in writer's block. And I'm actually in trouble with foreign publishers for not writing it.

I don't know how to explain it to you any better than I already have. I feel completely disconnected from all the characters.

One of the biggest issues I have is the that love triangle is over. It ended at the end of Wisdom. Alice made her choice, once and for all. The fifth book for Swear would be about wrapping up some loose ends. But there is no love triangle. Alice chose very clearly at the end of Wisdom.

Below I am going to offer a SPOILER filled explanation of a the love triangle. If you wish not to read it, you have that option. If you wish to, just highlight it.

What about Jack's one? Alice was meant for Peter. - No, she wasn't. Elise was meant for Peter. When Jack was turned into a vampire, he died. He was technically dead. That screwed up everything. The blood bond that was meant for him - namely, Alice's - crossed over to Peter. She was actually always meant for Jack. The whole point of their love story, however, is that Alice and Jack fall in love with each other before the blood bond kicks in. They got to know each other, then fell in love. 

This was my intention all along, and the whole point of the series actually was free will. Alice loved Jack because she wanted to, not because of fate. It eventually turns out they were fated anyway, but that's not why she fell in love with him. 

But for those of you filled with rage now at this, shouting what? I love Peter! You'll understand why I didn't write the book now. Writing a book is hard work and I put my heart and soul in it. I have no interest in working hard on something to have people send me hate mail.

You may be saying, well, then why don't you just change the ending? Because I can't. That would be a lie. I can't write things I don't believe in, that I don't care about it. You may not like my writing or agree with my choices, but I do. That's what makes it work. I believe in and am passionate about what I write. I knew from the first book that Alice would end up with Jack, and I can't change just because it would make people unhappy

But I also can't bring myself to work so hard on something that I know will only make people unhappy. When I think about it, it makes my chest tight and my stomach twist up. It's made me hate the series and hate all the characters in it, which makes me further disconnected from the story.

That's where I'm at. That's why I'm stuck. And until I can find a way to write a book that I believe in, that lives up to the expectations that people have for the series, that's where I'm at.

UPDATE #2: I would like it if you all read the post called "Ideas vs Things." This lays out why I'm not talking about Swear and I will not even comment on the status of Swear until it's written, edited, and about to be published. Me not talking about it doesn't me I'm not thinking about or working on it (although, it doesn't mean I am working on it either). It just means that I'm not comfortable saying ANYTHING about it until I am absolutely 100% when the book will be out.

I have not forgotten about it. I will not forgotten about it. I want to finish it. Yelling at me, swearing at me, threatening me will not make the writing process go faster. In fact, it slows things down a lot because I get upset and distracted when people yell at me, and that means I'm less likely to write anything.

I know most of you have been incredibly patient, and I want to thank all of you that have been reasonable and sane about this whole thing. I know it sucks (it sucks for me, too).

But in reality, it's only been two years since Wisdom came out. Two years. That's not a very long time, even though I know it seems like eternity between books. (But I had to wait four years for The Dark Knight Rises after The Dark Knight, so I get it).

I'm just asking you to be patient. I will write it. I'm just not going to talk about it until it's finished. And then when it is, I will scream it from mountain tops and take out ads and throw a parade. I will let everyone and everything know, and you won't be able to miss it. Thank you.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Hollowmen is For Sale!

Yay! Hollowmen is now for sale for both the Kindle and the Nook! It's not yet out in paperback, but I'm hoping to have that in a few weeks.

It's already ranked at #93 in the Kindle store and #50 in the Nook store. And it has three 5-star reviews on Amazon. So, that's a good sign.

If you want to get it for the Kindle, you can get it: here. If you want to get it for the Nook, you can get it: here.

Sorry the blog is so brief. A camera crew is coming over today to film a little web piece for the interwebs. I'm not sure exactly where it's going up at, but as soon as I know the details, I'll be sure to post them.

Thanks to everybody for all the support and words of encouragement in the last blog, and I really hope you enjoy Hollowmen

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Hollowmen News!

Good news, everybody! I have published Hollowmen for the Kindle and the Nook! They should both be for sale within the next 24-72 hours.

And because I know I'm going to get asked this a lot, and probably still get angry comments and emails demanding to know why people can't get the book yet, I'm going to bold this part: From this point on, I have absolutely no control or idea when the books will be published. It's up to Amazon and Barnes & Noble, and it should be sometime in the next 72 hours.

I'm very excited about this. I worked very hard on this book, and I hope that you'll all enjoy it. I definitely think this book is a bit more R-rated than its successor, so that's something to keep in mind if you're purchasing it for your children. As always, I recommend that parents read books before and/or with their kids so they can decide what's appropriate for them.

As soon as the book does go for sale, I will post links on where to get it at. People are usually pretty good about letting everyone know when they find it, so you can also check out my Facebook and Twitter, because things tend to pop up there before my blog.

And as excited as I am about all of this, I feel like I need to get something off my chest. I want to preface this by saying that I love you guys and I appreciate you and I know that I wouldn't be here without you. But lately, I've been getting more and more feedback stating that you don't think that's true. And I've also been getting yelled at more because I'm not doing things how or when you wanted me to.

And here's the thing, guys. I love you. Really I do. And I show that love by always trying to do the best I can for you. Writing the best possible books I can for you. I'm not a factory, though. I'm a person. And sometimes things take longer than I mean for them to, just because that's how writing goes or sometimes because things happen in my personal life.

This doesn't mean that I don't love you. I don't delay the release of a book to piss you off. In fact, I try to never set particular release dates for books so I can't disappoint you, yet somehow, for reasons I don't know, I hear things like, "Hollowmen was supposed to be out on October 19th! Where is it?!" When I have never, ever, ever issued an exact release date for that novel. Never. So I don't know where people heard that date, but then they were mad at me because I hadn't delivered on something I'd never even promised.

I try really hard to make everybody happy, but that's impossible, and as a result, I'm giving myself an ulcer and developing an aversion to blogging. Because inevitably a blog will lead to comments about how I'm making someone very unhappy in some way. And I don't want to make anyone unhappy. I want to make you all happy, and not just because of what you've done for me, but because I like to make people happy.

I am currently incredibly stressed out by a multitude of things going on my life. Not all of them are work related, but some of them are. And it's because of this I find it so upsetting when people are all, "You don't even care!" Because I care very much. Too much in fact, and it's probably this excessive amount of caring that is ruining my life.

I guess what I'm saying is that I do care. I am doing the best I can for you. And things might not always get done as soon as you want them, and I'm sorry about that, but things don't always get done as soon as I want them too, either. I wanted this book published in October. But it wasn't ready then, and I'd rather wait a month and publish a better book then rush through something and publish a piece of crap so you can have it sooner. I think that's far more respectful to you the reader.

Friday, November 4, 2011

New Cover Reveal!

I have an awesome new cover to show you guys, and I will, but first:

Thanks to everyone for participating in Zombiepalooza. The winners from all the giveaways have picked and notified, so watch your email ;)

Hollowmen is back from the editor, but I'm still editing it. I'm hoping to publish it early next week.When I publish it, I'll post some more info about the book. Until then, Hollowland is free for the Kindle, if you haven't checked it out yet. The first un-edited chapter of Hollowmen is still up, if you want to check that out: here.

Now to the cover. As you may know, I have a new four-book series entitled Watersong with St. Martin's. The first book Wake will be out in 2012. The photographer for the cover is James Porto, my favorite photographer ever, and it really was a fantastic honor to work with him. His work is amazing. As is this cover. Don't believe me? Take a look:

I love it! I got to pick out the model, and the clothes she's wearing, which was fun. I think there will be also something extra with the cover when it comes out, but this cover is divine enough as it is.