So, so, SO thrilled to share the full cover for the AUS/NZ version of WHISPER, releasing internationally in May 2018!
How stunning is it!!!!
And, even cooler, for a side-by-side look at both covers, check this out:
I am honestly SO EXCITED for this book to be released next year! You have NO IDEA!!!
I’ve decided that I’m going to attempt a monthly “This is what’s been happening in my world” update (mostly sticking to writing stuff, but also anything else exciting, too). So to kick this off, here are some of the things I got up to in the month of September:
First off, and VERY exciting, was that I got to announce that I have not one, not two, but THREE books coming out next year. Graevale (the fourth book in The Medoran Chronicles) will be coming out in February, Whisper (the first book in my new YA series) will be coming out in May, and We Three Heroes will be coming out in September — kind of a #4.5 book for The Medoran Chronicles (three novellas told from the perspectives of the main character’s best friends, D.C., Jordan and Bear). If you missed it, you can watch the trailer here:
Soon after being able to share about We Three Heroes, I had another exciting announcement — the US cover reveal for Whisper (which you can find on Goodreads here)! I’ve been working with the incomparable Kate Egan on this one (the editor of The Hunger Games) and I’m SO EXCITED for May 1st when it will be releasing simultaneously in US/CAN (through KCP Loft) and AUS/NZ (through Pantera Press). The AUS/NZ cover reveal is coming soon, but for all my US/CAN readers, here’s what you can expect to see in bookstores:
Other than sharing exciting news, this month has been crazy-busy when it comes to actual writing work. Not only did I go through the first round of typeset proofreading on Graevale, but I also completed the structural edits for We Three Heroes. On top of that, I’m pretty sure it was early September when I did my final read-through of Whisper, too. So I’ve been juggling multiple projects and it’s been INSANE (but in the BEST way).
Also! Another seriously cool thing that happened this month (and admittedly, other times besides) is all the INCREDIBLE fan art that was sent my way. If you follow my social media (especially my Instagram account), you’ll see that I often re-post fan art in bundles once it’s started to build up a bit. But here are just a few that I want to show from an artist named Jodie in Western Australia who has been having some fun with my characters. *Please note that only some of these scenes have happened in the books, while others are more wishful thinking and at the artist’s discretion:
This is a scene from Raelia where Kaiden and Alex are dancing at D.C.’s birthday:
This is also a scene from Raelia (after Sir Oswald’s disastrous dinner party):
HOW AMAZING ARE THOSE PICS!!!!! If you want to see more from Jodie, then be sure to follow her Instagram account (@jmaz_art). She also has a Red Bubble page where you can purchase some of her pics (or request others) and/or have them put on mugs or pillows or phone cases or stickers, etc.
Truly, I’m so honoured and humbled whenever ANY artist takes the time to bring my characters to life (whether in wishful or actual scenes), so THANK YOUUUUUU to all the amazing people out there who do so!! (FYI, I can barely manage a stick figure, so my envy knows no bounds!!)
I think that’s about it when it comes to writerly updates. As for any actual reading, as you can see, I’ve been a tad busy with multi-book editing, so there hasn’t been that much time to enjoy any other books. BUT I also had my birthday earlier this month and took a few days off, which meant of COURSE I had to read a book (or three). My favourite would absolutely have to be Sarah J. Maas’s Tower of Dawn, for a lot of reasons, but partly because I’m a critique reader for Sarah so I actually read ToD about 6ish months before it was released, so it was just an absolute pleasure to re-read it and see how the final version came together. This book — I have no words. I loved the early draft (which is saying a lot since, going into it, I wasn’t a huge fan of the main character that ToD focuses on) and I can honestly say the published novel is beyond 11/10. If you haven’t tried any of Sarah’s books yet, I can’t recommend them highly enough!!
Other than reading, if I had the chance for any downtime, I found myself watching the last few episodes from season 5 of Chicago Fire (THAT ENDING = GASP!!), the second season of Killjoys, the oddly addictive (and oh-so-fascinating on a human behavioural perspective) Lucifer, and the seriously awesome second season of Shooter.
As for movies, I watched The Shack (omigosh the tearrrrrrsssss — Sam Worthington and Octavia Spencer are BRILLIANT in it!!) as well as The Mummy (erm, no comment other than to say I MUCH prefer the original), Snatched (which was actually super entertaining, and I’m not usually a huge Amy Schumer fan), and Hidden Figures (which was just perfect). OH! I also watched A Dog’s Purpose, from which I’m still traumatised, and Baywatch, which also left me traumatised (but for different reasons).
Jeez, it looks like I did a LOT of watching this month — but, again, I took a few days off for my birthday, so most of all that was earlier in September. The latter weeks were basically spent in front of my laptop, buried in words, or walking up hills, mountains, and staircases in preparation for doing fun things like hiking the Tongariro Alpine Crossing on my upcoming epic NZ holiday in 4 weeks! (EEEEE, so excited!!)
Until next time!
This is an appreciation post to highlight the wonderful work of my Australian proofreader, Desanka Vukelich, who I’ve worked with on three of my four Medoran Chronicles books. I’m currently going through her edits of Graevale, the fourth book in the series, and gah, she’s just so amazing!
The thing is, when you write a novel, there are a LOT of words involved. Sentences, paragraphs, sooooo many places where mistakes can slip by unnoticed. And truthfully, there’s probably not a book in existence that doesn’t have some kind of mistake (the trick is to have it be so engrossing that readers don’t notice those mistakes, or if they do, they don’t care). But while errors in printed books are almost always inevitable, you still want to have as few as possible. That’s why authors really need to be able to trust their proofreaders, since those proofreaders are, essentially, the final line of defence.
To be perfectly honest, it actually scares me a little every time I receive a proofread manuscript and see just how many mistakes Desanka has managed to uncover. I mean, she only ever sees the manuscript AFTER all the editing stages (structural edits, copy edits, line edits, ALL THE EDITS), so in most cases, many eyes have already checked (and re-checked) for problems. So when there are STILL problems, it just really brings home how integral it is to have a professional (and experienced!!!) proofreader checking things right until the very end. (She even looks over my ‘Acknowledgements’ section!)
Will there still be errors in the printed version? Probably. I mean, hopefully not, but when we’re playing with around 130,000 words (give or take), the chances are pretty high that something might still slip through the cracks. But just think of how many more mistakes there would be WITHOUT an amazing proofreader?
All I can say is that I’m so incredibly grateful to Desanka and her meticulous eye when it comes to my books, and I hope I get to work with her on many more projects in the future!!
I wish I could give multiple examples of the (sometimes hilarious) mistakes she’s found, but for fear of revealing Graevale spoilers, I’ll just share this one. It’s only a simple typo, but I actually laughed out loud when I realised how it would have read if she hadn’t flagged it:
… Because everyone wants their clothes to be insulted, right? LOL! (And oops!!)
As far as I’m aware, Desanka actually works freelance, so for any writers who might be on the hunt for an amazing proofreader, be sure to check out her website here.
SURPRISE!!! Next September WE THREE HEROES will be released — three novellas in one bound, full-sized paperback! (Also will be available as eBooks!)
I’ve kept this a secret for soooo long and I’m ridiculously excited to be able to share it now! D.C., Jordan and Bear were pretty much screaming at me to write their stories, and I can’t express just how many feels I experienced as these novellas came together!
To give a little more info, D.C.’s story (CROWNS AND CURSES) is an origins story — how she came to be the girl we know. Jordan’s story (SCARS AND SILENCE) follows him as he deals with the aftermath of DRAEKORA. And Bear’s story (HEARTS AND HEADSTONES)… well I can’t say anything about Bear’s story yet since I don’t want to give away any spoilers for GRAEVALE!
Sooooo much stuff happens in these books and they’re integral to Alex’s overall series, so they’re essentially Medora #4.5!!! I absolutely can’t WAIT for you to get to know these three special characters more and experience their own individual stories!!! PLUS, this means that I have not one, not two, but THREE books coming out next year!! SO INCREDIBLY EXCITING!!!!
Oh, wow! I just saw that I have 10,034 followers on my website/blog!!!!! That is absolutely INSANE!!! You guys are the absolute BEST and I’m so ridiculously honoured (and humbled) to have so many people interested in the words I share! HUGS FOR EVERYONE!!! xoxo
I’ve had a bit of a week, as they say.
Normally I try to keep this blog about book- and/or publishing-related things. But every so often I have a moment where I remember that I’m human, and that you are too. And just maybe you need to be reminded that you’re not alone, and me sharing parts of my non-author life with you may offer some encouragement.
So this is one of ‘those’ posts—the kinds that are impossibly difficult to write, but therefore all the more important to share.
As I said at the beginning, I’ve had a bit of a week. At the end of last year I wrote a post that revealed how I don’t deal well when it comes to anything medical. What I don’t think I said is that I actually have PTSD-inspired health anxiety. It’s not fun, especially since I can’t take meds lest I risk them messing with my creativity (or so I’m told). But unless something triggers my fear into panic-mode, I can generally get by dealing with just a low level of awareness 24/7.
But last week—well, there was a trigger.
It likely comes as no surprise that I’m not wonderful when it comes to making decisions. I mean, there are just so many options to consider, even with things that should be simple, like being asked my favourite colour. (Am I wearing it? Looking at it? Is it for a car or a house or for something artistic? What mood am I in, or what mood do I want to be in? Etc., etc., etc.)
Due to my inability to give a straight answer, the following video clip with me responding to a “This or That” game (filmed while I was at Sydney Writers’ Festival last month), is somewhat hilarious. You’ve been warned!
While I was at Sydney Writers’ Festival just over a week ago, the lovely Kaysia (@bookskay) interviewed me, asking all kinds of questions about The Medoran Chronicles, Whisper, future projects, and random author-y stuff. There’s also a bloopers section at the end, which is hilaaaarious. Honestly, this interview was so much fun — enjoy! xx