After *mumble* years, a whole lot of swearing at my characters, and at least three halfway-through rewrites, the current draft of Blood on the Snow is actually finally finished. Which, in practical terms, means we’re about a third of the way through the actual plot of Argentum – curtain down on Act One, go stretch your legs/buy a tub of very overpriced icecream with one of those tiny wooden spoons in the lid, and then come back and wait for the start of Act Two and everything, in the grand tradition of trilogies everywhere, getting a whole lot worse.
And, given the intermission is a useful point to do this, when we come back to start Silver in the Ashes, we’re coming back with a new update schedule. Specifically, updates from now on will be on alternate Saturdays at 1pm GMT/BST, starting on February 20th 2021.
The main reason for this is practicality – when (when) everything starts getting back to normal, your author has a set of weekly commitments which mean an update schedule which goes by day of the month as opposed to day of the week is going to end up being more trouble than it’s worth. It’s also (I hope) going to make updates a little easier to read for folks, since it means that they’re coming out over the weekend rather than randomly in the middle of the week.
The eagle-eyed among you might’ve noticed that this looks like it means you’re going to get the first chapter of Silver in the Ashes a couple of weeks sooner than you otherwise would, and I’m happy to confirm that that’s the case. This is for two reasons: first, it picks up a couple of hours after the end of Blood on the Snow and I’m very conscious that I left the last chapter of that book on something of a cliffhanger, and second, I like even numbers and 20, 6, 20 is a more synaesthetically pleasing progression than 27, 13, 27.
This does, however, mean that my current backlog will run out somewhere around the beginning of May, so there may be a slight hiatus at that point if my dayjob and the current everything have conspired to eat enough of my spoons that I’ve not managed to write another couple of chapters by then. I’m hoping that won’t be the case, but I figured I’d give folks a heads-up on the basis that ‘and now a sudden un-warned-for hiatus’ is generally something to be avoided if at all possible.
And now, some answers to questions that nobody was actually asking, but that I felt like answering anyway:
What about [insert plot thread here]?
This is the end of Act One, not the end of the play – sit tight and all will become clear. (If it helps, think of this as a trilogy in the same way that The Lord of the Rings is a trilogy [though, I hasten to add, I am not in any way comparing my writing to JRR Tolkien’s])
If I start reading at the beginning of Silver in the Ashes am I going to understand what’s going on?
Short answer: Unfortunately, no.
Long answer: you’ll probably get the gist, but it’ll take work – starting with Blood on the Snow would probably be a better idea.
Why the hells are you posting a draft anyhow?
Honestly? Because I’m a morbid bastard sometimes and I don’t want to die with half a million words on a harddrive and all my hard work seen by all of two people. (For clarity: I’m fine, and I’m not going anywhere any time soon. But back at the start of all this, when we didn’t know exactly how deadly this pandemic was going to be, I sat down and had a long think about what I wanted done with my writing if the worst happened, and the answer was ‘I’d really bloody like folks to get to meet my characters and my world rather than have them disappear’, so).
Morbid thoughts aside, the other reasons for posting it are, in no particular order: so I get off my arse and actually keep writing the damn thing, because this project is very much my baby and I know full well I’ll likely end up self-publishing anyhow as a result, and ‘hey, you try selling an exceptionally long foul-mouthed queer multiple-POV fantasy trilogy to a traditional publishing house as an unknown and let me know how that works out’ (no slur on traditional publishing houses or traditionally published authors – hells, I have a passel of ideas I want to actually sell traditionally. I just don’t think Argentum is one that anyone in that market would buy right now).
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