rolanni: (booksflying1.1)
So everybody knows the story, how 'way back in twenty-aught-oh-six our publisher of dern near a decade stopped paying us and we were Forced to Improvise like mad, improvisational things. It is well here to pause and recall that writers are people who live by their wits. For good or ill.

So, the combined wits of Steve and myself revealed that Maine gets damned cold in the winter and that we would object to living under a bridge in Maine winter conditions almost as strenuously as the cats would object to the loss of their floofy blankets and penthouse catboxes. This meant that we needed -- anyone?


We needed A Plan.

In fact, we needed A Two-Pronged Plan, and Four would be better.

The prongs we came up with were: (1) Write a Liaden story and give it away on the web for free, while asking those who had a little change jingling in their pockets to donate, and (2) Get a day-job to keep the cash flowing and the health insurance covered.

That met the minimum, Prong-wise, and so we started.

A couple months into 2007, Madame the Agent produced Prong the Third -- a contract for two dark fantasy novels, Duainfey and its sequel, Longeye, to be written on really short deadline.

Nothing we had discussed between us said that the Plan had to be easy, and, we knew that, if we were going to rescue our careers as writers, we had to start building a new backlist right now, so we took the contract, and we wrote the books, which made three in 2007 -- insanely quick for us.

Baen did its part by editing, promoting, publishing -- all those things that publishers do, and in September 2008 Duainfey hit bookstores in hardcover, followed by Longeye, in April 2009.

The mass market edition of Duainfey was published in February 2009, a little more less than a year after the hardcover, and today I see that Amazon is shipping the mass market of Longeye.

And there we are. This is the backlist that we started growing anew, right now in 2007.

Raises a glass to Becca and to Meripen Longeye.

Fair seeing, the both of you.

Early Release Day!

Saturday, February 14th, 2009 07:35 am
rolanni: (duainfey)
Word is that Baker & Taylor sent the mass markets of Duainfey to the bookstores without an embargo notice. Y'all know what that means, right?

Right! Early release party!

We are Reliably Informed that Constellation Books in Reisterstown, Maryland has Duainfey in hand. has it, including one doughty fellow selling a "used" copy for $9.40 -- roughly a buck-forty more than a new copy, which his is, unless he reads really fast. Check your favorite local and/or indie bookstore; chances are they have it, too!
rolanni: (duainfey)
Thanks for the good wishes on Re-release Day. If you're still on the fence about this whole Liaden Universe® thing and not sure you want to commit to one of those Unending Series, [ profile] ysbetwordsmith has a review of the first three books (Agent of Change, Conflict of Honors, and Carpe Diem) here, which may help you make up your mind.

In other news, I have finished going through the page proofs for the Duainfey mass market. Remarkably few marked-up pages will go into a FedEx Letter Pak this evening and start their journey to North Carolina tomorrow, projected arrival date: Black Friday. Ahead of deadline. Wow.

I note without comment that I counted 30 pages of "sex scenes" in this 455 page book.

Among other things, the finishing of the page proofs means that I'll get those four writing days this weekend. Yes!

In day-job news, the students, and apparently most of my faculty, have fled for the holiday. I need to go in tomorrow to turn on the lights and make sure the furnace is set so the pipes don't freeze. The English secretary and I discussed the viability of playing ping-pong in the hallway. Maybe I'll be able to finish reading the book that I've been carrying around with me for three weeks. I remember having time to read for pleasure...

The wind, it is blowing something Terrible and Fierce and has been all day. It's also been raining. Had it been a few degrees cooler and we'd've had a blizzard on our hands. As it is, we're under a flood watch until 4 p.m. tomorrow, and it is now ten degrees warmer than it was when I left work this afternoon.

Well, it's interesting weather...
rolanni: (Flying Monkey!)
So, today, as part of the Outcome of yesterday's acrimonious meeting in which it was Revealed that my boss and I are blockheads bent upon Inconveniencing the Princess of the Galaxy, who has -- wait for it -- A Book to Write...Today, I did a mountain of data entry. It took me every single minute of my work day; which meant I have a Whole Buncha Ketchup tomorrow, doing my Regularly Scheduled Work, which of course had to be ignored today, so that the PotG will no longer be Inconvenienced. About this. Until it's Revealed that I Did It All Wrong.

But, that's tomorrow. Or possibly, Monday.

Today -- in fact, this evening -- there was a (scarily brief) edit letter for Longeye waiting in my inbox. I think we've resolved everything that was asked. It took, like, an hour. Um. Eep.

Steve is making Good Smells in the kitchen. Rolls, he says. They're not ready yet, he says. They sure smell ready...

I suppose I ought to pay these bills; they're due soon, and there's money in the checkbook. After I do that, I'll get back with the page proofs for Duainfey.

Evil Roy Slade has arrived from Netflix. Just sayin'...

OK, that was brutal

Wednesday, November 19th, 2008 05:18 pm
rolanni: (Eat Drums!)
Breakfast with Steve at Tim Horton's, then early to work for a full day, to wit:

Early meeting, followed by two hours of intensive hole-punching and three-ring binder filing, followed by a confrontation, an extremely acrimonious meeting, and Even More Data Entry. For the record, I am a blockhead. And so is my boss.

Stopped for milkshakes on the way home -- good call. Talked to Steve -- very good call. Did dishes. At Management's urging, bought another year for the Theo Waitley LJ. Will now update the firewall, and go curl up again with the page proofs for the Duainfey mass market. One hundred fifty pages in and no sex yet. Maybe my hands won't fall off tonight, but I kinda wish they would.

Eyes, Please!

Wednesday, August 27th, 2008 05:25 pm
rolanni: (duainfey)
If, in your travels up and down the internets, and in the Real World, you find a review of Duainfey, would you please let the authors know, and provide either a link or the name and issue date of the magazine?

Also! If you see Duainfey on the shelves of an actual bookstore, could you please let us know which store, where, and when?


Saturday Notes

Saturday, August 23rd, 2008 07:04 pm
rolanni: (Fledgling from Sam Chupp)
Sometime in the last couple of days, I caught up the orders for Saltation. I note that we now have less than 400 books available for adoption.

I see that Duainfey is continuing to move out into the world, showing a ranking in the 4,000s last I looked, fwiw, and opinions vary.

Perfesser Wranglin' has been ...challenging this past week, even though I only worked three days. Monday starts the first full week of the academic year. Pray for me.

For those in the area of Albany-Rensselaer, we -- Sharon Lee and Steve Miller -- will be signing at Flights of Fantasy on Thursday evening October 9, for a pre-Albacon warmup.

Steve is working on some Interesting News. Watch the skies.

I've been so much enjoying the Abney Park, Garmarna and other recently purchased CDs, that I have committed more Abney Park, which catches me right up, dammit. This is new musical territory for me -- what else is there Like This that y'all would recommend? Remember that I'm an Aging Rock and Guitar Ghod Listener here, just easing my way into strange waters.

Still not entirely free of the Con Cold, alas. Today was spent on the sofa, with Mozart, Fledgling, a notepad and a red pen. Still lots of work to do there and I could use a couple weeks off from the day-job to do it.

Oh, wait...

Someone had asked -- no, the icon above is not taken from the Baen cover (which is being painted as we speak). It was made by Sam Chupp, who narrated the Fledgling podcasts.

Hark! The phone!
rolanni: (duainfey)
Remember how we used to sign pre-ordered hardcovers of our Meisha Merlin editions and mail them to y'all?

We're not doing that with Duainfey.

But! Mysterious Galaxy has named Duainfey its September Signed First Speculative Fiction Pick! Don't take my word for it -- here's the newsletter, with mini-reviews.

Mysterious Galaxy happily does mailorder, so if you need that signed copy, for your collection or for a gift, this is your go-to indie bookstore. Maryelizabeth and her crew are super-helpful booklovers, very knowledgeable in SF and mystery. While you're over there reserving your signed copy of Duainfey, browse the rest of their stock -- you know you want to! -- including even more signed first editions

Duainfey shipping

Monday, August 18th, 2008 05:45 pm
rolanni: (duainfey)
For those who pre-ordered from, watch the skies! Duainfey is reported as In Stock and the page is now open for reader reviews.
rolanni: (shigure)
Yes, I'm still sick. Let us speak now of pleasanter things.

Many thanks to the Alert Reader who sent along the link to the hot-off-the-press Library Journal review of Duainfey, and a lovely surprise it was.

Despite, yanno, the Aftermath, I had a wonderful time at Denvention. It was personally quite the best WorldCon I've attended in years. Mind you, I've missed the last three WorldCons, so perhaps absence has made the heart &c, but still -- I had a blast, in a mostly non-frenzied, and relaxed sort of way.

Part of this absolutely had to do with the fact that I was not over-programmed. Some pros certainly were -- Wil McCarthy flashed me the back of his badge and I've gotta tell you, I felt faint -- but personally, I thought that the level of programming in which I was enlisted could not have been better.

Denvention was also the first WorldCon out of the last six I've attended in which I wasn't expected to be behind the Meisha Merlin table during those hours when I was not wanted elsewhere -- which was a huge lightening of the load.

Another thing that made Denvention pleasant was the simple greeting, heard over and over: "I'm glad to see you." I like this tradition and hope we can make it a staple of all future cons, World or Regional. It's a gentle reminder that we gather together in this peculiar manner because we are a community and without each other we're only Odd.

Being pleasantly programmed meant I could explore the neighborhood surrounding the convention, which is something I can't recall ever having had time to do at a WorldCon. I took several pleasant strolls down the Sixteenth Street Mall and got quite used to having a variety of restaurants and delis within a few blocks' walk. Cook's Fresh Market was a particular favorite, as were our old friends the Corner Bakery, and Johnny Rocket's.

The Sixteenth Street Mall is also home to a number of stores, of which one is the Tall Girl Shop. I raced in one afternoon in a panic, having miscalculated the number of party clothes I would need at the con. To say that they fixed me up with something is to do less than justice to the experience. The whole store got into the project, putting together a series of outfits until the perfect one emerged. I've never had so much fun shopping in my life.

Victoria's Secret, my next stop, was not such a pleasant experience, alas. I explained to the (young, lithe, golden) sales clerk which garment I wished to obtain. She stared at me and asked my size. I confessed. She shook her head. "I'm sure we don't have anything here that will fit you," she said. I nodded and walked over to the rack where the desired items were hung, flicked through and found my size in the color I wanted, filed correctly. I handed it to her on my way out. Not that I do much business there in the usual way of things, but VS has lost even that slender custom.

Veering back to pleasant things and the first panel was The Storyteller's Bowl, with Steve Miller moderating, and fellow panelists Phil Foglio, Lawrence Watt Evans, and Don Sakers. This was a great panel; the panelists swapped around experiences and ideas, shared what worked and what didn't, came up with ways to adapt useful techniques to their particular genre -- it was more like a brainstorming session than a panel and it was great for us. I hope it was great for the audience, too.

In the audience of that panel, in fact, right there in the front row, was a young man we'd met at Penquicon -- Howard Tayler -- assiduously taking notes. Wow, I thought, Howard's really serious about this.

Well, it turns out that, far from taking notes, Howard was drawing. Figures, eh? And one of the things he was drawing I've never had a portrait done, so I forgive him. In fact, I'm delighted. He gave me permission to show y'all the picture, so here it is )

Everybody have a nice day. I'll check back in, after breakfast and a nap.


Thursday, July 31st, 2008 05:28 pm
rolanni: (Dr. Teeth)
I have here in my hand -- a copy of Duainfey in hardcover.'s... pretty!

Where was I?

Saturday, February 9th, 2008 06:49 pm
rolanni: (duainfey)
Oh, right.

Yesterday was Friday. We handed in the revisions to Duainfey at a couple minutes shy of 5 o'clock EST. And in this morning's email, there was a note from our editor, saying that we have fulfilled our mission. This is when I love the internet -- and a speed-reading editor, too, yessir.

This morning, we arose early in the minus-single-digits(F), went out into the delicate blue-and-pink morning, motored through the misty curtains of ice-fog, and sat down to breakfast at the South Side Diner. After breaking our fast, we achieved long-overdue haircuts, picked up prescriptions and other needed things at the drugstore, came home to find the Boskone schedule, and more or less got to work.

It's ridiculous how hard it is to remember that today is Saturday. Not that I'm complaining, mind you.

Oh! And in a completely unlooked-for development, we're expecting snow, total accumulation 4-8 inches. We start watching the, in fact, and expect to be off-watch around 10 p.m. tomorrow.

Everybody keep warm.

Progress on Longeye:

33575 / 100000 words.
34% done!
rolanni: (walk in the snow)
Have I mentioned that the day-job has been a cesspool of insanity lately? Sigh. Also? If you -- yes, you over there under the coffee table -- are ever in the position of supervising someone? And your supervisee says they need lead time to do event posters, and gives the date by which information needs to be received in order to become posters? And you blithely let the deadline go by, only to demand several days later and one supervisee-work-day before the first event in the series that posters be produced on the instant? And the supervisee says, "I told you I needed lead time, not lead minutes?" The proper answer to that is NOT, "I don't care if they're ugly."

Of course, there is no win for the supervisee in this case, but to do the impossible. So, four posters (for the record, they are kinda ugly), and buncha other stuff that could've been done in January had-I-but-known-later, I crawled home and declared to Steve that I felt like I had been beat with a two-by-four, whereupon he wisely produced a glass of wine and "After the Thin Man." And that's how I spent my mini-vacation.

On today's schedule, my pass (following Steve, who has already done the heavy lifting) through the Duainfey revisions, then on to Longeye, while the snow flutters prettily out of the sky and I do not access the day-job email account.
rolanni: (Default)
The Duainfey e-Arc has been posted.

No, I don't know why the publisher is listed as Meisha Merlin.

ETA: And now the publisher is properly listed as Baen. Thanks, Arnold!

Eye Candy

Friday, November 23rd, 2007 01:46 pm
rolanni: (Duainfey)
The cover painting for Duainfey, by Tom Kidd. Scroll down to the November 8 entry.

Many thanks to Tom Peters for pointing us the way.
rolanni: (Them 1980)
So, it stopped raining. Finally.

[ profile] kinzel is on his way to the crepuscular and brooding southern estate where he spent his childhood moments like so many bright silver coins -- ahem.

To continue, [ profile] kinzel is on his way down-coast to a sudden family conclave. Mozart, having seen The Suitcase safely out of the house, is in his hammock, sleeping the sleep of the justly exhausted. Scrabble has been into my office twice since 7:30 to go over the schedule for the next couple of days with me, and to assure herself that Necessary Duties Relating to Cats and Their Comfort are adequately covered during this unprecedented time of Staff Shortage.

Last evening, I mentioned that the mass market edition of Crystal Dragon is now available for pre-order. [ profile] keristor promptly saw me and raised me to the tune of Duainfey, scheduled for release on September 2, 2008. Just in time for my birthday.

It's awfully pretty outside right now...I'm thinking I'll sneak out and go to Belfast for a couple hours; get a little salt air into the system, blow the cobwebs out of my alleged brain. Get some sun. Yeah.

What're y'all doing this weekend that's fun?


Sunday, October 21st, 2007 04:20 pm
rolanni: (Duainfey)
Duainfey final draft

Zokutou word meter
101,000 / 100,000
rolanni: (Yay!)
My (third in as many weeks) cellphone works! Yes! I actually completed a call.

Mind you, I had to make said connection through a "call forwarding" protocol (which is automagic, so All Good), nor do I know what my own phone number is, but -- progress has been made in a forwarder direction!

Went to bed last night at eleven, fell asleep around two. At five, Mozart woke me up by alternately licking my nose and chirping joy! and happiness! Sigh. So nice to be loved. I note that he is back in bed, partaking of a Very Substantial mid-morning nap.

Since I was up, I did an email and LJ check, drank coffee, ate half a bagel, coffee, shower, coffee, minor house-straightening, ate the other half of the bagel, discovered it was barely seven and went to work. On the positive side, I've made Real Progress on the final pass of Duainfey. On the not-so-positive side, I've had to strap my right wrist into a brace for the first time in years, and am mainlining aspirin. Gah.

Steve reports that there's a con happening over yonder in Montreal, and that he's greatly enjoying himself.

And that's the timer to end this goof-off session.

Back to work, me.
rolanni: (Caffeine Deadline)
Steve handed Duainfey back to me last night. I've printed out the manuscript and related paperwork (the list of Names, Places and Weird Words for this one seems...lengthy), sharpened my red pen, and rustled up a yellow pad. If you need me, I'll be on the sofa, reading.

Ebooks: Head's up

Wednesday, September 26th, 2007 06:39 am
rolanni: (booksflying1.1)
Fictionwise has begun releasing Sharon Lee ebooks here, starting with "A Matter of Ceremony" and Barnburner. There's also a place on that page to sign up to receive an email notice when new books are available.

In other news, Duainfey is in Steve's hands for the second pass, so I'll be doing the next chapter of Fledgling -- talk about creative whiplash -- which I will commence upon Real Soon Now, right after I get enough sleep.

Oh. Wait.

In other news, it was Hot yesterday -- 90F according to the thermometer at Fred's Coffee, though the Official Waterville Temp only tapped 85. Today is supposed to be more of the same, with a possibility of thunderstorms. I could do without the heat, but I adore thunderstorms. In a way, I hope we get a window-shaker; the view from the new office is sublime and I haven't had a Really Good thunderstorm in a long time...

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