This just in: SWORN IN STEEL is slated for a U.S. release date of May, 2014.
But wait!, I hear some of you say. What about a release date for the U.K.? Australia? Poland? Germany? France? Bulgaria? That, I’m afraid, I don’t know. I wish I did, but those are things that can’t be determined until we have a U.S date. Now that we have one for SIS, my foreign publishers will start fitting the book into their catalogs and timelines as well — but that may take a bit, especially if we are talking translation. And I don’t always hear the release dates right away. So the best I can tell you that is everything is in process for everyone else to start figuring out release dates as well.
On the plus side, the book doesn’t need a lot of editing. We’ve by-passed structural editing (that’s where my U.S. editor sits down, reads the finished manuscript, and then tells me where all the plot holes/confusing bits/parts that could use polishing and/or rewriting are) and have gone straight on into the copyediting phase (which is where they catch all they typos and fiddly punctuation bits and continuity errors–you know, where “Angus” on page 24 suddenly becomes “Andrew” on p. 128 and “Angie” on p. 376…or something. There’s no Angus or Andrew or Angie in this book but you get the idea). This means my editor and publisher think the manuscript is clean enough to go straight into production, which means less overall time getting it from me to you.
Which, by the way, is both cool and scary from my side of the keyboard. Cool in that they think the book is good enough “as is” to jump that particular hurdle and rocket on towards print. Scary in that, as the writer I tend to sit back and go, “Really? Because, um, that one part with the thing? Where Drothe does that other thing with the people? And then the plot’s all like ‘ka-pow!’ later because of that other thing? I was thinking that if I just tweaked the part with the whatchamajigger and added a tiny scene with this other bit and then tweaked this other section where…” until my wife kindly walks into my office and smacks me in the back of the head and says, “LET THEM PUBLISH THE DAMN BOOK!” Even after the smack and my acceptance that, yes, I need to let this (especially this) book go, part of me still sees all of the other things I wanted to accomplish with this book that never quite worked or never quite made it on the page.
But that’s the nature of art, isn’t it? It’s never truly finished, but at some point it has to be done. The reality at the end never meets with the vision you had at the beginning. At some point, you simply need to step away and trust yourself (and others who believe in your art) and let it go.
And so I am one step closer to letting the book go and out into the world. May 2014. Look for it. And watch this space for updates on other release dates.
As for me? I need to start thinking about research for the third book because, as much I may sometimes wish otherwise, these things still don’t write themselves….