Currently 53% through the Beta and reading/editing like a madman. Cover work progressing. More news soon.
That’s right! It’s time for news about Jungle! LOTS of it!
There’s not even any point to holding back or writing a preamble, so I’m just going to dive right in. Partially because I’m pretty tired, but also because this news is just exciting. So are you ready? Here goes.
Jungle is currently on track to release in November of 2019. That’s right, next month. Likely before Thanksgiving. I do not have an exact date for you yet, but in the weeks ahead, there will be one, and Jungle will go up for pre-order.
Now, with this news out in the open, Alpha Readers and Beta Readers both! Feel free to talk about Jungle now. I would ask that you not spoil it for folks (please don’t be that person in Sitka, Alaska who got the first copy of The Half-Blood Prince and spoiled it for everyone) but other than that, feel free to talk about it! You’ve gotten the early look! Let people know what you thought!
Now, with the news that Jungle will be releasing in November, I’m sure some of you are wondering “Yes, but what will it look like?” Well, while the final cover isn’t done yet, I have a test work in progress to give you all a pretty close approximation. You ready? Here goes …
Apologies for this post being a little late today, but I wanted to get some other writing stuff done first. This week has been … chaotic.
But now it’s here. So then, what’s that title all about?
Well, I’d be lying if I said there wasn’t a bit of self-serving logic behind this. Because, after all, I am an author, and yes, I do like to see support!
But it’s a question I’ve not just heard from my own readers, or mused on my own about. I’ve heard folks in person talking about their favorite book saying “Well, I read it, I bought it, so I don’t know what else to do.”
It’s a legitimate question! After all, unlike musicians, authors don’t go “on tour” in the same way, doing “writing concerts” and mosh-pitting. And when they do go on book tours, they’re something that is free to attend. At most, people buy a new book to get it signed, but many of the people that show up already have a book they want signed.
Same with panels or conventions. The authors that come to those do so out of their own pocket. They may sell items in a vendor hall, but no one pays them for paneling or putting in appearances. It’s all voluntary.
The point I’m making here is that authors aren’t like a lot of other celebrities or purveyors of the arts. They don’t get paid for public appearances, they don’t get paid for gigs … They make money from their books, and their books alone. Maybe some movie rights if they get lucky. Or merchandising. But you’ve got to be big for those to happen. Big enough that the money is just extra on top of a very stable income.
They’re not like musicians where you can buy an album, then a t-shirt, then go to a concert … Authors, basically, just don’t have the same avenues of support other artists have.
Sands, we’ve almost come to expect that too. It’s just become the culture of our society. Who would pay money to see an author in person? For that matter, just look at this site. No ads, each Monday a new article on writing going up, all for free. Because that’s just how authors are in society.
Okay, I don’t honestly want to delve into that too far. The point I wanted to drive home was, as I said, that authors are kind of in a tricky space, insofar as fans “funding” them. There’s not much to it but book sales and merchandising.
This is why, I think, you have so many people who read a good book, enjoy said book, and then think to themselves (or say aloud, as I’ve heard it before) “I really liked this author, but what else can I do besides enjoy them?
Again, this makes sense. If you read something you enjoy, chances are you’d like to read more of it. Which means you want there to be more created, so you want to support the creator and let them know “Hey, this is good, make more of it!”
But with authors, those avenues are slim. So, how then, do you support an author you enjoy?
Well, there are ways. Let’s look at a few.
Oh yeah. You’ve been waiting for this one. The moment has finally come.
Beta Reader invites for Jungle have just gone out.
That’s right. It’s here. It’s happening. We’re close baby. So very close. Jungle is almost upon us!
Which means that if you’ve really been holding out on reading Colony, now is your time. Grab a copy! Be ready when Jungle hits!
In the weeks ahead, meanwhile, look forward to the cover reveal and then the release date!
Okay, so the bad news is there’s no normal weekend post today.
But that’s because I’m hard at work on finishing the Jungle Alpha. There are only a couple of chapters left, and then I’ll make the final blitz pass on Monday to finish off any loose ends (ie areas that I fixed that were awaiting feedback that got it, I just had already moved on to another chapter, etc). Once that is done …
Well, I’ll start uploading chapters for Beta. Beta invites will go out.
Yes, you read that correctly. Beta read invites will go out next week! And then while that takes place, I’ll start work on the cover and well … Jungle is getting close folks. Really close.
So those of you that have been Beta Readers in the past? Get ready! It’s coming! Those of you that are fans, also get ready. And anticipate a serious ride. Because Jungle is coming this fall. And if you thought you had a handle on things after Colony … Let me tell you, you’re in for a ride.
Anyway, I need to get to it so that the Alpha is all but done by Saturday night. I’m pulling some long hours getting this one ready folks. So be prepared! It’s coming! The trio, Jake, Anna, and Sweets, is BACK!
All right readers! Update here! So, many of you may recall a few months back at the beginning of summer how I spent two weeks working on an unsolicited Halo manuscript sample? Which I fired off at the 343 folks?
Well, as of yesterday, I have an official response. They’re passing on it. In fact, they’re not even open to looking unsolicited manuscripts. Their process (mostly) is to tell their current publisher they want a book, wait for that publisher to pick an author from their internal stable, and go from there. So they automatically deny unsolicited manuscripts.
Why post about it if it’s just (effectively) a rejection? Because I know from comments that a number of you were really curious about it and looking forward to news on it. Well, I’m sorry to bring sad news to you, but the offer has been passed on. The rights holder isn’t interested, and that’s that.
Which does, sadly, mean that the sample manuscript will likely never see the light of day. Granted, I could always do the “file off the serial numbers” thing but … No. There are people that do that, simply re-purposing something written for one work and setting into another, but … I’ve got to be honest, that wouldn’t sit well with me. It’d just be an obvious mirror, and that’s not my style. Plus, writing a whole book in that mirrored style? I’m sure you guys would rather see [REDACTED] all the sooner.
So yeah, those readers that were excited by the idea of me maybe having my name on the cover of a Halo book, well … That’s publishing. At the very least, you guys have got Jungle coming this fall (look for a cover coming soon, by the way), and Fireteam Freelance plus [REDACTED] coming after that. So I hope you stay excited for those. And don’t stop reading some of those Halo books, because a lot of them are quite fun (as is the setting, part of the reason I wanted to contribute to it).
So yeah, they’re passing, which means the manuscript goes into that quiet, sunless vault of “stuff you won’t see.” At the very least, I got a fun week out of writing it and my Alpha and Beta readers got to enjoy a neat jaunt through a different setting from Colony, Jungle, or Shadow of an Empire.
So, now you fans know it’s not going to happen. I’m still working on Jungle, which is definitely looking at a fall release now, as summer is almost over. This one is going to rock your minds, folks. Look for more on this one soon, and even preview material to start the hype train rolling before long.
That’s it, the news is up. Gotta get back to work on Jungle. Also, if you’re a Dusk Guard follower, note that the new chapter will be up in a few hours, since it’s Tuesday!
Honestly, I was going to hold off on a second post this week until Thursday (I’m blitzing through edits on Jungle right now) but this post had already been on my mind, and then a discussion yesterday online regarding MacMillan’s continued crusade against libraries basically poured gasoline over the spark and, well … Here we are.
Look, something that I see brought up constantly online, including in the very post that kicked this whole chain of thoughts off, is the price of books. It’s a hot topic anywhere. There are a lot of people who see them as too expensive, to overpriced, whether digital or not.
And you know what? I think they’re wrong.