When Gardner Dozois asked me to write something for an anthology of dragon stories that he was editing with Jack Dann, I realized it would be a good chance for me to explore more about one of the dragons of Luster. The story became the background for Graumag, and she tells some of it to Cara in THE LAST HUNT. But if you'd like the full story as I wrote it for the anthology, you can now get it in e-book form from either of the sources below.
Now up at both Amazon and Smashwords, this is the strange story of Nils, whose father was a Hunter, but who follows his own strange path to try to make peace with what his father has done. It features a brief guest appearance from Ivy Morris, the Wanderer.
I've been working to make some of my short stories available on for download. Among the first ones that I've posted is "Homeward Bound" which I wrote for my anthology The Unicorn Treasury. You can get it for 99 cents at either of the links below: "Homeward Bound" for Kindle
Please note: This story is not set in the world of the Unicorn Chronicles. Even so, I do think any unicorn lover will appreciate it.
Thursday, September 16, 2010
I'm going to be in Denver this weekend, to speak at an SCBWI Conference. That's a closed event, BUT . . . I'll be doing an open presentation at the Boulder Public Library on Sunday afternoon, September 19. Here's the info:
The local "alternative" weekly just did a really nice article about your
humble obedient servant. If you'd like to take a look, here it is: Mr. Fantasy
I have to say, I do like the headline. And the photo doesn't make me
twitch, which is good, though oddly enough I have no idea when it was
Wednesday, September 08, 2010
Hey, Gang -
I'll be reading (or just chatting) and signing books at The Story Book House in Dallas on Saturday, September 11. A good chance to get autographed copies of the Unicorn Chronicles, as they're supposed to have them all on hand. (You can call the store to check for sure.) If you're in the area come on over and say hello!
Here's another lengthy interview about writing the Chronicles. This one also has some writing tips in it, something a lot of you guys often ask about. It's on a terrific website called YA Fantasy Guide. If you want to know a bit more about the Chronicles and where they came from, I think you'll enjoy this. Here's the link: Unicorn Chronicles Interview
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Hey, Gang -
I'm going to be doing a signing at Books of Wonder in NYC on Saturday, July 17, from noon to 2 PM. You can find details here: Bruce at Books of Wonder
Come on down if you get a chance!
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
Hey, Gang -
The folks at Scholastic have just posted an interview I did for them, mostly about the writing of The Last Hunt but with lots of other stuff included as well. I think it's pretty fun.
Our office copies of LAST HUNT have arrived and we've been shipping out preorders for the last two days. Every order will be in the mail by tomorrow afternoon.
Early readers are starting to check in, and they seem very happy - which makes me very, very happy!
What a joyous relief it is to have this book finally out in the world!
Wednesday, June 02, 2010
IT'S A BOOK!!!
Reports are coming in from around the country that THE LAST HUNT is showing up in bookstores.
If you've picked up the book and read it, please feel free to comment on one of the many online review sites. I'm dying to know what you think of it.
To all of you who have waited so (sooooooooo) long for this volume, thank you for your patience. I hope you think the payoff will have been worth the wait. But if you don't, please feel free to tell me that, too.
Tuesday, June 01, 2010
Tomorrow is publication day for THE LAST HUNT (though word is out that some people have already been finding it at their local B&N stores). So here is the last of the snippets, a fairly lengthy one featuring a meeting between two dragons . . .
approached Firethroat’s cave cautiously. Other than a dragonmoot
once every five years, the dragons of Luster did not usually visit
each other. Territory was territory, after all, and not to be
transgressed upon lightly. She was glad it was Firethroat Amalia had
asked her to call upon; that venerable dragon was the closest thing
Graumag had to a friend among Luster’s great beasts. Though she
never, these days, thought of herself as anything other than dragon,
Graumag took some pleasure in this semi-friendship. There remained a
human element of her heart that longed for companionship in the way
dragon hearts did not.
she reached Firethroat’s mountain she flew back and forth in front
of the cave, waiting to be invited in, though in truth she could not
be sure that the lady was even at home. But at last a voice boomed
out, “What is it, Graumag? Why do you come uninvited to my lair?”
but not unsent,” replied Graumag. “The unicorn Queen has asked me
to speak to you.”
I guess I must hear what it is she has to say. You may approach.”
was not actually an invitation to enter, but it was a first step.
Graumag threw back her head and blew out a gust of flame, as was
proper. Then she dropped to the ledge that fronted the cave. She
perched there, her great tail dangling down, until Firethroat said,
“How is it with you, Flame Sister?”
am affrighted by what is happening to the land. And you, Flame
scowled. “I, too, am gravely concerned.” She paused, then said,
“You may enter.”
Sunday, May 30, 2010
If you're just coming in . . .I've been posting snippets of the soon-to-be-released The Last Hunt on an (almost) daily basis since the beginning of May. The last will be on May 31, as the book will be unleashed on the public on June 1. (I CAN'T WAIT!!!)
We also sell directly from my website. These copies are not discounted, but they are autographed. (And if you pay attention to the form, you can even ask to have them personalized.) Here's the link for that: Last Hunt - Autographed Copies
For a really rich listening experience, you can get the audiobook version, which is narrated by me and performed by a full cast. At 14 CDs, it's fairly expensive, but we're offering a half price pre-order special. You can find it here: The Last Hunt - Pre-order on audio
For a fun look inside the studio while we were recording, here's a link to a three minute video that shows some of the actors, and also has some interview material with, well, ME! Studio Session for LAST HUNT audiobook
Sunday, May 30, 2010
In the delver world . . .
you have a knife?” asked M’Gama.
looked at her, puzzled. “What for?”
mind what for! Do you have one? If not, help me find a sharp stone.”
another word, she began searching for such a stone herself. The dim
orange glow of the lines that ran along the corridor was sufficient
for her eyes, which were long accustomed to low light. As she
searched, she realized something she had previously noticed, but that
hadn’t completely registered because she had been focused on so
many other things: the delver tunnels were beautifully crafted. She
would have found no sharp edges, or even any loose stones, if the
tremors had not done so much damage. As it was, she crossed to a pile
of rubble where part of the ceiling had collapsed and quickly located
a shard about a foot long. Running a finger over it, she murmured,
to the outcropping over which she had found Rocky weeping, the
Geomancer knelt in front of it. She held out her left arm and drew
the sharp edge of the shard across the soft flesh. Blood welled out,
scarlet against her ebony skin. She turned her arm so the blood would
drip onto the stone outcropping, then closed her hand into a fist and
clenched it. She repeated the action, the blood flow increasing each
time she did. When she was satisfied she had enough, she relaxed her
fingers. Then she used her right hand to pinch the divided flesh
together, chanting in a low voice until the wound had sealed itself
shut. It was not healed, and would not be for some time, but the
bleeding had ceased.
took a deep breath, then placed her hands upon the bloodied stone.
Turning to Rocky, she said, “What is his name?” When the delver
hesitated, she snapped, “If you want me to bring him back, I need
his name! You must know that much.”
Saturday, May 29, 2010
Medafil and Graumag . . .
had been flying in the direction Cara pointed him for about an hour
when he saw a something moving through the air in his direction.
“Prat-spakkle it,” he muttered to himself. “Can’t be alone
even in the sky!”
himself to take evasive action if necessary, the gryphon continued on
wasn’t much longer before his sharp eyes identified the approaching
figure as that of a dragon. Within another few minutes he saw that it
was, as he had hoped, Graumag. “And thank the poot-doodled powers
it’s not Ebillan,” he murmured.
two beasts continued toward each other. When they were within hailing
distance Graumag called, “Greetings, Air Brother!”
Sky Sister!” replied Medafil. “It is good to see you again.” He
actually meant this, mostly.
good to see you. However the truth is I would be even happier to see
young Cara. I was separated from her, and have not been able to find
Friday, May 28, 2010
Here's a bit of Cara and Medafil traveling . . .
before noon of the second day of their journey Cara and Medafil came
to an extended wetland.
Tamoran Marsh,” said Medafil. He turned his head to speak over his
shoulder rather than shouting to her as he usually did while flying.
“If we weren’t in such a hurry I’d go around it instead of
place is filled with strange creatures. You never know what’s going
to come slithering out of that murky water.”
that he pumped his wings, shooting forward over the dismal landscape.
It took them nearly an hour to cross the swamp. Once clear of it they
flew on for another several minutes before Medafil called, “I’m
going down to that clearing for a rest.”
as the gryphon glided toward the opening in the trees, Cara spotted
something that filled her heart with fear. Leaning forward, she
cried, “Not here, Medafil! Fly up, fly
questioning her, the gryphon changed course. Beating his wings madly,
he soared into the sky. When they were far enough from the clearing
he turned his head and, panting from the exertion, demanded to know
what was going on.
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Here's a behind-the-scenes look at the recording process for THE LAST HUNT. You'll see me narrating, along with the actors who play Ian Hunter, Martha Hunter, and Fallon.
I think it's kind of fun. Hope you enjoy watching it.
PS: If you want to get the audiobook version of it, we're offering an advance-order discount of 50% on the library edition. (Normal price $85 for the 14 CD set, advance order $42.50). You can get it here: The Last Hunt - Pre-order on audio
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Cara and Graumag . . .
the thought, she stepped forward. As she did, she was startled to
hear a small voice chitter, “Hotcha stinky firenose dragon!”
had been so focused on Graumag she had forgotten the Squijum was
clinging to her neck. Reverting once more to dragonspeak, and hoping
Graumag hadn’t actually heard the Squijum, she said, “Do you mind
if my smaller friend accompanies me?”
nodded. “That is acceptable. Now hold still so I can pick you up.”
herself, Cara heard a flapping sound, then felt a rush of wind. As
another burst of lightning erupted overhead, the girl saw Graumag
spread her batlike wings and launch herself into the air. As the
thunder, which had followed uncomfortably close to the lightning,
began to diminish Cara felt another rush of air from the darkness.
With no more warning than that, Graumag grabbed her by the waist and
soared into the obsidian sky.
cried the Squijum, tightening his grip on Cara’s neck.
surged upward, gaining speed. The lightning that strobed around them
made Cara flinch with each blinding flash. She knew the jolting
shards of electricity were close, for thunder followed every flash
almost instantly, the mighty sound waves pounding against her.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Back to the centaurs . . .
Arianna stood halfway up a low mountain. Ahead of her was a
little-used path that would take her to the top of the southwestern
rim of the Valley of the Centaurs. She placed a tentative hoof on the
path, but then turned to look back. In the dim, pearly light that
precedes sunrise the valley below was painted in of shades of gray.
She gazed at it lovingly, trying to make herself believe she was
studying the land, and not looking for Arkon. As her eye traced the
outline of the familiar hills something twisted in her heart. She had
been happy here, and did not relish leaving.
air was still; no breath of wind stirred the thick, chestnut hair
that flowed nearly to the place where her human form merged with the
horse portion of her body. That stillness seemed right. In this hour
before dawn all the world should have been quiet and unmoving. Alas,
it was not; though there was no wind, the very ground beneath her
hooves was troubled. The occasional tremors that shivered through the
stone made Arianna shiver as well.
was happening to Luster?
turned to look at the path ahead. She would have to start, and soon,
if she wanted to pass over the valley’s rim before the sun rose.
Oh, where was Arkon? Was it possible he wouldn’t come?
Saturday, May 22, 2010
Missed last night (Friday night, kind of a night off) so here's a fairly long snippet to make up for it:
was in his second day of writing, and deeply absorbed in recording
the tale the Chiron had told about the birth of the Whisperer when a
bell rang, informing him that the Queen wished to speak with him.
it,” he muttered. “Can’t a fellow ever be just left alone to do
a summons from the Queen was not something to be ignored, especially
since, as Chronicle Keeper, he was a pledged servant, and also
received a nice living. So he left his work and made his way to the
place in his complex of caves where the scrying pool was always ready
to reveal the Queen’s messages.
many of the caves in his home, this one had been left in its natural
form. Three small cauldrons, each suspended from a tripod, lit the
cave with a soft orange glow. Centered between the tripods was a
stone basin. Usually the water it held was dark and cold looking, but
now, with a message coming in, it, too, emitted a soft glow.
the surprises and shocks of his recent journey, Grimwold did not
think he could be startled by whatever this message might be. Yet
when he went to the edge of the basin and saw that the image in the
water was not a messenger, but Amalia Flickerfoot herself, he braced
Friday, May 21, 2010
A bit more about Cara (posted Thursday night, slightly after midnight...)
struggling!” whispered Elihu. “I got you out of there just in
heard a cry of rage from the distance, followed by a deep-throated
roar, and the screams of men in pain. “It
sounds as if your dragon friend didn’t appreciate having those men
try to take you,” said Elihu, not slowing his pace. He tightened
his grip, pulling her closer to his broad chest. His body was warm in
the moist, chilly air. “Now, no more talk. There were a lot of
them, more than even your dragon friend could fight off, though
she’ll doubtless do some serious damage in the process.
Nonetheless, it’s a certainty that some are still after us.” As
if to prove his words, moments later Cara heard the sound of men
crashing through the bushes not far behind them. Elihu
picked up his pace. Despite his bare feet, he ran swiftly and
silently through the misty gloom, dodging between trees, leaping
roots and stones, never slowing until the sound of pursuit finally
faded. Only when he stopped to let Cara slide to the ground did he
begin to pant for breath. “Thank
you,” she whispered. “But what about —” He
pressed a finger to her lips for silence.
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
A bit about Belle . . .
Belle wandered aimlessly for much of the day after the Whisperer first spoke to her, terrified that the voice would return even as she feared that it would not.
She had known fear before — she considered it a natural part of the life she led. However what she felt now was something different, a fear not for her body, but for her deeper self, which she had thought was secret, but had clearly been seen by this strange, invisible being. Worse, what he found in her was something she had been trying to deny, even to herself. But it was true — she did feel she was better suited to lead the unicorns than Amalia Flickerfoot, who had been absent for many tens of years, and had returned to unicorn form only weeks ago.
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
Introducing a new character . . .
Feng Yuan sat silently beneath the strange tree, enjoying its odd fragrance. She was not astonished to be in another world; astonishment had left her life the day Wu Chen had rescued her from the hillside where her father had abandoned her because the family could no longer feed a useless girl. She was five at the time, and had expected to die in a few days. Given the pain that twisted both her heart and her stomach, death would have been a welcome relief. But then Wu Chen appeared, seemingly from nowhere, to ask if she would like to go live with a woman named Beloved, who would feed, clothe, and educate her.
In return, all she had to do was help the sons of Beloved lure unicorns to their doom.
Better doom for a unicorn than for me, she had thought, with the cold practicality that comes from fear and hunger.
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
I've just listened to the first three hours of our audio version of The Last Hunt. Okay, as writer and narrator, I probably shouldn't be the one to say this, but I think it sounds fabulous!
It's going to be huge (14 hours!) but it looks like we'll actually have it ready to ship on June 1, same day as the print version releases. At worst, it will be within that week.
For a real deal, you can pre-order at a 50% discount - $42.50, rather than $85 (remember, that's for 14CDs. After pub the discount will be 40% for the first three or four months, and then it will rise to full price. So right now is the best time to buy!
Skipped last night because I was busy having a birthday party ;> Here's today's snippet:
darkness of the cave seemed to invite a closeness, an intimacy.
Gathering her courage, Cara said, “I already know that most of
Earth’s dragons went to a different world. How is it that you are
one of the seven who came to Luster?” Graumag
sighed heavily, causing the flames at the edges of her nostrils to
flare a bit. “That is a long story, Cara Hunter.” “We
have time between now and morning,” replied Cara softly. “And I’m
not sure how much sleep we’re going to get under the
is that?” asked Cara, who was well used to not fitting in. Another
long silence followed. Graumag’s voice, when she did finally did
begin to speak, was soft, as if the memories were hard to pull up and
painful to recount.
Sunday, May 16, 2010
(Posted an hour past Saturday midnight....)
was growing late when Medafil, Cara, and the Squijum reached the line
of clouds that marked the edge of Graumag’s territory. No sooner
had they crossed under that line than a jagged streak of lightning
split the sky off to her left. Moments later its thunder rumbled past
them, so powerfully Cara felt as if she had been struck.
we had better walk from here on,” she called to Medafil.
it! We don’t have time for that!” bellowed the gryphon.
won’t have any time at all if we get fried by lightning!”
Medafil could reply another bolt of lightning sizzled down,
terrifyingly close and filling their nostrils with the metallic smell
of ozone. “Gaaaah! All right, we’ll grum-dingled walk!”
Saturday, May 15, 2010
(Posted slightly past midnight on Friday)
through the space, Fallon realized that neither it nor the
bedchambers above showed any signs of having been modernized. It was
not just the lack of plumbing in the tower; he saw no electric
lights, nor any sockets in the walls. He moved quickly to the great
doors at the front of the room. The one on his left stood slightly
ajar and he pushed it with his foot. It opened onto a large courtyard
where two things immediately caught — and warred for — his
first, and by far the more spectacular, was an oval opening, a good
ten feet high, that seemed to have been carved out of the rough wood
of the castle gate. Gazing into it, Fallon saw a thin, swirling mist.
Beyond the mist a tunnel led to a forest of silver-trunked,
blue-leaved trees. He felt a lurch in his chest as intuition and
something deeper — some heart-connection for which there was no
name — informed him that the one he had sought for so long was on
the other side of that opening.
ached to plunge through it.
the boy . . .
Friday, May 14, 2010
(Oops! Missed Wednesday while I was out traveling for speaking engagements. Sorry! This one posted slightly past midnight on Thursday.)
The others looked to Rocky, as they had so often when they were young. It was Rocky — Nedzik then, of course — who always had the best ideas for games and pranks, the best ways to annoy the adults, and could find the most satisfying mischief.
Rocky looked at them for a moment, then said, "My name is gone, taken by the king. Yet in my heart I know that I am still myself, and he had no right to do this. I say, do not surrender your names, my cousins. I say take new ones to spite the tyrant!"
"But you said the name must be given to you," protested Razka.
"Then I give you the name Diamond," replied Rocky instantly. "For you are hard and sharp, and you have secret fire in your depths."
"Diamond," murmured his cousin. "Diamond. I like that!"
"What shall I be?" cried Erkza, the elder of the twins.
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
hissed Cara. “Medafil, wake up! We’ve got company.”
felt gryphon stir behind her, then heard him mutter, “What the
rat-gaddled, burk-spiffled midnight nonsense —”
broke off as another flash of lightning revealed the enormous form of
a dragon crouching about twenty feet away.
darkness returned. It didn’t matter. The image had seared itself
into Cara’s brain.
the thunder had faded to silence the dragon said, “What are you
doing on my mountain?”
Monday, May 10, 2010
I took yesterday off, so I might - might - post two snippets today. Here's the first:
blinked and sat up. The unicorns — and Alma Leonetti, the only
other human present — were all looking in her direction.
am sorry to wake you, granddaughter,” said the Queen. “But we
need you to join this discussion.”
scrambled to her feet, embarrassed to have fallen asleep when so much
was at stake. “Sorry,” she said quickly. “Sorry!”
need to apologize,” said gentle Cloudmane. “Your sleep is
well-earned. It is we who are sorry to wake you. However the
conversation now concerns you.”
you have something for me to do?” asked Cara. “Just tell me. I’ll
do anything you ask!”
Saturday, May 08, 2010
Here's a bit about Cara and her grandmother . . .
Her grandmother shook her head, causing her mane to ripple like silk spun from moonlight. "The regrets are all mine, dearest. You have already done far more than was fair of me to ask. And now you and Medafil have accepted yet another task. This means a great deal to me, though my own wish is that I could shield you from all this."
"You shielded me all my life, Gramma!" cried Cara. Then, unable to resist, and a bit more sharply than she had intended, she added, "Longer than you should have, with some things."
Amalia Flickerfoot sighed, knowing what she was referring to. "I learned my lessons as a human all too well, granddaughter. Stealth, slyness, deceit — they are not the unicorn way. And yet — "
Cara gasped. "And yet they may be just what we need!"
Friday, May 07, 2010
Here's a hefty bit to take you into the weekend . . .
(for those of you just tuning in, from now until pub day on June 1 I'm posting daily snippets from LAST HUNT)
the centaur stood just outside his cave, honing the edge of his
sword. The metal of his blade glistened in the light of the
bracket-mounted torches — as did the sweat that coated his muscular
arms and chest. He was calm, despite what lay ahead. He was
confident, too. Though there had not been a combat to determine a new
Chiron in the hundreds of years since the centaurs had come to
Luster, Arkon had been studying the rules — and the necessary
fighting skills — from the time he could leave his mother’s side.
With his friend Basilikos he had sparred and jousted and tussled
through all the years of his youth, readying himself for this time.
was grateful that the old Chiron hadn’t died too soon; otherwise
he, Arkon, could not have been part of this great event.
he felt a flash of guilt for this thought. The old Chiron had been
wise and good. Unfortunately, he had also been tired. That was
natural enough, given his oddly extended life, but it had meant that
the centaurs, as a people, had been stagnant ever since they came to
Luster. Now that the girl, Cara, had provided the old Chiron with the
death he so deeply desired, it was time for a new leader, with new
ideas, and fresh energy.
Arkon, sliding the whetstone along his blade again, time
for us to move beyond the restrictions of this valley and take a
larger place in Luster . . . no matter what the unicorns say.
Friday, May 07, 2010
A little late posting today's snippet. I was in a school all day, and in the studio directing all night. But couldn't go to bed without meeting my promise . . .
had been pondering all this as she made her way back toward
Autumngrove. Then, on the night of her third day of travel the
Chiron’s story was confirmed in the most horrifying way possible.
voice began to speak to her.
Wednesday, May 05, 2010
Here's today's tasty tidbit: Cara
yawned and rolled out her blanket. As she did, she said, “Medafil,
there’s something I’ve been wondering about.”
Luster is the world of the unicorns. But I know there are seven
dragons here, and a whole population of centaurs. And you told me
yourself there are merfolk off the coasts.”
but true. Fribble-brained water people are a bit too given to jokes
for my taste. Anyway, what’s your question?”
there are lots of all those other creatures. So, what about gryphons?
Are you the only one?”
I’d rather not talk about that.”
sorry. I didn’t mean to offend you.”
not offended, nud-splorkle it. I just don’t like to talk about it.
But if you must know, there’s a fairly large flock of us in the
Grand Aerie. It’s in the mountains northwest of Autumngrove.”
But you don’t stay with them?”
savages? Can’t stand the mub-fuzzled ignoramuses."
Tuesday, May 04, 2010
The snippet du jour . . .
leaving the Valley of the Centaurs, the delver who Cara had nicknamed
Rocky spent the better part of two nights wandering in a vaguely
homeward direction. He traveled aboveground, partly because the
tunnels of Delvharken would be dangerous for him. He was, after all,
still supposed to be locked in the king’s dungeon, and he was
fairly certain his fellow delvers all knew it.
other reason to stay aboveground was that he was deeply confused by
what he had learned about the origins of his people, and could not
decide what, if anything, he should do with the information.
he would have taken the story to King Gnurflax. But since it was
Gnurflax himself who had stripped Rocky of his true name and then
sent him to the dungeon, that didn’t seem like a good idea right
thought several times about trying to contact his teacher but feared
that even the attempt would endanger the old delver, whom he loved
and honored above all others. Not that danger wasn’t all around now
anyway. But his teacher would be in no position to help when things
got worse — as they were sure to — if the king had already
disposed of him.
Rocky decided to act as any proper delver would, and seek out a cave
where he could think in peace.
Monday, May 03, 2010
Here's today's snippet:
delvers carried M'Gama into a room-sized cave lit — barely — by the
same orange stripes that ran along the passageways. Without comment,
they chained her to one of the walls. In an odd way the imprisonment
was almost kind, for they secured only one ankle and one wrist, both
with chains of sufficient length for her to sit on the stone
outcropping to her right, even to lie down if she wished. Not only
that, there was a small pool, fed by a trickle of water, in a
declivity to her left. So, she would not want for something to drink.
She suspected they might even provide food, though she also suspected
it would take two or three days of hunger to make whatever they gave
her seem edible.
Monday, May 03, 2010
It's a book! I just got an early copy of The Last Hunt from the publisher. Oh, it is a thing of beauty.
Less than a month to go before it's unleashed on the world at large!
Sunday, May 02, 2010
Here's today's snippet. I got carried away and decided to send four whole paragraphs! ;>
was the Queen who answered. “We make the request of you for two
reasons, granddaughter. The first is speed. None of the dragons are
close at hand, and it would take days for any of us to reach them.
However Medafil has offered — with much fussing — to fly you to
the dragon’s lair. Which means the journey will only take a couple
the second reason?”
should be obvious,” said Moonheart, never one to phrase things
gently. “You have the gift of tongues, and can speak to the dragons
in their own language. They respect this, and will be more likely to
respond as a result.”
which dragon would you like me to visit?” asked Cara.
Saturday, May 01, 2010
As promised, from now until the day LAST HUNT is released (June 1!), I'll be posting snippets to whet your appetite. This is the opening paragraph of Chapter Two:
Diana Hunter edged closer to her grandmother, Amalia Flickerfoot,
Queen of the unicorns. Neither girl nor Queen were able to keep their
eyes from the sky, where the scarlet circle of the Blood Moon was
rising higher and higher.
Friday, April 30, 2010
"Continuing a series practice, this finale substantially tops the previous volume's page count as Coville draws all his characters and plot lines together in a mighty cascade of short chapters to a climactic battle on the alternate world of Luster. Even readers new to the epic will have no trouble following along . . . Audiences fond of tales festooned with words like "ensorcelled," lines like "Halt! Who seeks to enter the Great Hall of Gnurflax, King of Delvharken?" and names like "Amalia Flickerfoot"—plus magical figures from a comically monkey-like pet and a gryphon with a tender ego to angels (thinly disguised as "Great Powers"), centaurs and, of course, shining, magnificent unicorns aplenty—will be swept along to the grand, hard-fought resolution."
— Kirkus Reviews May 1, 2010
Friday, April 23, 2010
COUNTDOWN TO HUNT
Starting on May 1 we'll have a countdown to the publication date, June 1. I'm planning to post here a snippet - anywhere from a sentence to a full paragraph - each day. (Though I have to confess I may miss on some of the days that I'll be out speaking.) I think it will be a fun way to get ready for the book's release.
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
It's a book!
I got an email from my editor yesterday to tell me that she was holding a bound copy of LAST HUNT in her own two hands. Happily, it has some nice frills I thought we had lost to make up for the extra cost created by the book's length. To be specific, there's foil on the cover, and they were able to use the same sepia ink they used in DARK WHISPERS.
I'm hoping to actually hold a copy myself sometime soon. For now, it's just nice to know it exists!
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
The first review for LAST HUNT is in, and it's a winner! From the notoriously cranky Kirkus comes this: "Even readers new to the epic will have no trouble following along….and will be swept along to the grand, hard-fought resolution."
"Grand, hard-fought resolution." I like that -- it gives a sense of not only of the conclusion of the book, but what it took for me to get there!
Tuesday, April 06, 2010
We found our Rajiv! An amazing young man who has a remarkable gift for mimicry, he worked with our dear friend Binaifer Dabu, who coached and modeled his accent for him. I had begun to despair of this, but I'm thrilled with how it finally worked out. There is still a lot to do on this recording, but that was the last major hurdle. We're working desperately to make it available on the same day that the print version of LAST HUNT goes on sale.
Regarding that, I've been tracking it on Amazon, and the presales are looking very good. Don't forget you can also preorder a copy directly from us if you want to have one autographed.
Thursday, March 18, 2010
We've finished principle recording for THE LAST HUNT. The last session involved picking up some solo sections from me, and all of the lines from the Squijum, since Lauren Synger, the actress who voices that role, was not able to be in the main sessions. It was quite charming to see her at the microphone, since she was holding her hands up in front of her, bent down from the wrists, and after a moment I realized she was creating paws for herself! Some performers really do get into character...
Monday, March 01, 2010
We're in the studio now, recording THE LAST HUNT with a full cast of actors, and I have to say that I'm completely thrilled with what I'm hearing. This is a gargantuan project, one of the two longest books we've recorded in the nine years since I started Full Cast Audio, and we're going to try like crazy to have it available at the same time as the hardcover book releases (June 1). The only real problem we have right now is that we have no Rajiv! The wonderful young actor who took the role in DARK WHISPERS has returned to his home in Mumbai, and we are desperately seeking a replacement.
Friday, January 08, 2010
NEW SNEAK PREVIEW FOR LAST HUNT!
We've just posted Chapter IV (the first M'Gama chapter) for your reading pleasure. Click the "Previews" tab and you'll find it there.
Hope you enjoy it!
Friday, January 01, 2010
Best wishes to all my faithful readers for a grand and glorious, peaceful and prosperous, happy and healthy new year. May it be a better year for all of us!
Wednesday, December 30, 2009
I feel like a college kid. I pulled an all-nighter last night, working on the copy edited version of LAST HUNT. Answered all of the copy editor's queries, a large number from the main editor, and massaged in a fair number of my own tweaks before hitting SEND at 6:35 am.
Our son's wedding on December 19, then Christmas, a bevy of guests, and revising a 600 page manuscript in seven days on top of it all. I think I'm going to go lie down for a while!
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Should you care to hear me shoot off my mouth, here's a radio interview coming up on December 17 - if you don't catch it when it airs the first time, it will be archived for later listening . . .
Wednesday, December 02, 2009
C'est Fini . . .
Just an hour or so ago I pressed SEND on an email that zapped the revised version of THE LAST HUNT off to my editors and the copyeditor. So it's done. Tinkering, minor tinkering, will still happen. But for the most part it is, like a pint of Ben & Jerry's Wavy Gravy, frozen.
Oh, there is so much more I would like to do. But that is always the case.
I read the last twenty pages to my writer's group today, and their reaction was very heartening, convincing me that I am on the right track.
You have all been so loyal and faithful, I am desperately eager to reward your patience with a book that lives up to your expectations. I hope . . .HOPE . . . I have come somewhere close to that dream.
Friday, November 27, 2009
Now here's something cool - two young ladies have come up with their own tune for "Song of the Wanderer" and recorded it - along with some very apt pictures - to make a video for YouTube. You can check it out here: Song of the Wanderer
Happy Listening - and Happy Thanksgiving!
Monday, October 12, 2009
By the way . . . for those of you who have been hoping for a long book - the manuscript is 597 pages!
Sunday, October 11, 2009
THE LAST HUNT IS FINISHED!!!
I wrote the final words of the first full draft at 6:45 AM, October 10, in Dhaka, Bangladesh. (Most of the book has been through twelve drafts at this point.)
It's been sent to the editors. Now I wait for the response . . .
Friday, September 25, 2009
Closer and closer. . .
I've passed the 530 page mark, and written several key scenes. I'm starting to believe I can actually finish this thing!
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Barreling Toward the Finish Line!
Okay, so the idea that I was going to finish that other weekend was a little premature. Life kept getting in the way. So I've gone on retreat again. Only I can't go out of town, so it's a home retreat. I'm referring to it as being in lockdown.
I wrote 10 pages on Saturday, 5 on Sunday, 5 on Monday, and this morning I launched the final battle. (It's not going to be pretty . . .)
Tuesday, September 01, 2009
I'm just back from what was supposed to be my annual vacation but was, instead, an extended writing retreat. I bore down hard on LAST HUNT, and I'm nearing the 500 page mark. This week I intend to write the final conflict (it's going to be HUGE!) and, if I survive it, I should have a finished full draft by next Monday.
Wish me luck!
Sunday, August 09, 2009
I just crossed the 450 page mark. I figure I have at least 50 pages yet to go, but I can feel the end getting closer.
The chapter I just finished nearly did me in. Sad stuff.
Monday, August 03, 2009
I just returned from my second writing retreat in (mostly) July, and I'm happy to report that it was the most productive month - in terms of page count - that I have had in NINE YEARS!
THE LAST HUNT now stands at 445 pages. That's the exciting news. Somewhat more scary is the fact that I don't feel a lot closer to the end than I did when I went off on this retreat. There is a lot still to happen!
The cool thing is, I've already written two of the most important final chapters, so I know at least some of how this is going to end.
Now if I can just pull all the threads together . . .
Wish me luck!
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
That's the mark that I just passed. I went away for a week on a "writing retreat" and made enormous progress - best week of writing I've had this year.
I'm going to do the same thing later this month. With luck, I'll have a finished draft by the time the month is out.
I had a blast on this retreat, and found a lot of great (well, I think it's great) new stuff!
Monday, June 08, 2009
Back in the Saddle! (So to speak . . .)
Spring was tough this year. I had a serious travel schedule, but managed to keep working on HUNT, if only a little bit, through most of it. That "little bit" is actually important, since it means you don't "fall out of" the book, and it's much easier to swing back into action when you do have time again.
Alas, just when I did have time coming up we had a family medical emergency. It was pretty scary, but things are - happily - much better now.
The good news is that my wonderful editor went to bat for me to get me some extra time. And, I am happy to report, this weekend I was finally able to really bear down on the story again. It was great to be back in Luster!
"The author as narrator is not always a good arrangement. Given Coville's wide-ranging experience in the world of audiobook production, it works flawlessly in this case. His reading is effortless and natural. His voice is perfectly suited as the story's narrator. The cadence and rhythm shift subtly as the mood and tone of the scenes warrant. The full cast includes an astonishing variety of voices from that of a young Indian boy, to unicorns and delvers and other unusual creatures, to Cara and Ian whose journeys are at the heart of this adventure. Each voice seems well matched to the character."
— VOYA December, 2008
"Music (Indian folk music when the setting is Delhi, and classical violin accompaniment in Luster, for example) heightens and complements the suspense and helps transition listeners. Subtle touches include one character's voice fading into another's. Author Coville, who serves as the main narrator, maintains a steady and consistent reading, and Becca Wemesfelder perfectly captures the tones and inflections of adolescent Cara. This fast-paced audio works well for both new and old series fans."
— Booklist 11/15/08
"Coville and a full cast of narrators do a splendid job, giving each character just the right voice, and sound effects and music add to the atmosphere of the tale. Listeners will eagerly await the fourth book in the series."
— School Library Journal June, 2009
"Cara Diana Hunter is on a quest for a critical story, and her father is on a journey in search of his wife. Transitions between the two tales are signaled by musical interludes that are helpful in keeping the listener grounded. The cast is strong, with a wide range of voices."
You'll find a couple of sample clips on the website, if you want to hear want to hear a bit of what it sounds like. Dark Whispers Audiobook
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
INTO THE LAND OF THE UNICORNS is now available on audio!!
Ever since I started Full Cast Audio 8 years ago, and we released SONG OF THE WANDERER, people have been complaining because we didn't also offer INTO THE LAND OF THE UNICORNS. But there was a reason for that - I had already recorded it for Listening Library, and they still held the rights. The problem was, they never released it on CD.
Last year I got the rights back, and we rushed the book into production. It's ready at last, and sounds really, really good (even if I do say so myself...).
IN THE CENTER OF LUSTER STANDS AN ENORMOUS TREE CALLED
THE AXIS MUNDI, THE HEART OF THE WORLD.
now that tree is wounded, pierced by magic. Through that wound marches an army
of Hunters, led by the sinister and vengeful Beloved. And they are all
determined to destroy each and every unicorn.
unicorns gather to defend their lives, the human girl, Cara, is sent on a
mission to meet a ferocious and mysterious dragon. Faced with perilous danger,
Cara must make a desperate decision that will change her life forever.
With a deft hand
and keen imagination, master storyteller Bruce Coville brings this riveting
epic fantasy series to a rousing conclusion as the secrets of Luster are
finally and satisfyingly revealed.
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Work continues. Scholastic is preparing the cover - which is sensational - so they're clearly excited about bringing this out next spring.
I'm pushing through a ninth (!!) draft of the first 3/4 of the book. Once that is cleaned up I hope to blaze through the final section.
Monday, February 23, 2009
I just spent a week on a "writing retreat", plugging away at LAST HUNT. Progress, progress, progress. (Not as much as I want, but progress nonetheless!)
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
I just saw the initial cover sketch for LAST HUNT, and all I can say is "Wowza!"
I showed it to Tammy Pierce, and she called me a bad name. This is actually a very good sign, since it indicates great jealousy.
Onward and upward!
Thursday, January 22, 2009
I spent last week in hiding, trying to get away from the world so I could totally focus on THE LAST HUNT. I wasn't entirely successful in escaping from the world, but I did get nearly thirty pages written, so overall I'm pretty happy with the week. I'll be doing this again in February - though, of course, I'll still be working while I'm here at home, too.
The new pages included a centaur chapter, a Beloved chapter, and some interesting (at least I think they're interesting) new developments regarding Belle.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
SNEAK PREVIEWS AT LAST!
As of this morning you can now read the Prologue and First Chapter of THE LAST HUNT here on the website.
These may change some before the book is published, of course, but this is how they stand right now.
Hope you like 'em!
Sunday, December 14, 2008
In case you've been wondering - yep, I'm hard at work on Book IV. Happily (unlike Book III) I know where I'm heading with this one. I can't wait to write the ending, actually. It's getting there where most of the work lies right now.
This morning I wrote a section about the delvers, who are becoming more and more important to the story.
My goal is to have a full first draft by the end of January, 2009. And Scholastic's plan is to publish the book in spring of 2010. (Yep, they really do take that long after I hand a manuscript in. That's partly to allow plenty of time for revisions, but also so that the sales and marketing departments can do theri jobs.)
Monday, September 08, 2008
In addition to reading DARK WHISPERS, you can also listen to the unabridged audio version of the book. It's from Full Cast Audio (of course) with me reading the text and a terrific group of actors playing all the parts.
If you click on the link above you can listen to a couple of samples from the recording. The first sample is 6 minutes long, and features Grimwold reading "The Legend of the Hunt"
We also have Song of the Wanderer available as a Full Cast recording. Audiofile Magazine gave this one an "Earphones Award" and wrote: "This superb production will enthrall young readers and their parents alike."
You may be wondering why we don't also offer Into the Land of the Unicorns as an audio book. (People have been asking about it since I started the company.) The answer is simple: I actually did record Book One, back when I was working with our friends at Listening Library. But that meant that they owned the rights to that one. And because they never put it on CD, it became, essentially, unavailable. But I have good news!! A while ago I got the rights back and we re-recorded it this summer. We're rushing it through, and it should be available in early winter.
Friday, September 05, 2008
Here's a link to a fantastic fan video , created by Cassie Giauque, that looks like a film preview for INTO THE LAND OF THE UNICORNS.
I've watched it three or four times - it's really cool!
Friday, July 11, 2008
Though the official pub date for DARK WHISPERS is August 1, it appears that Amazon.com is now shipping the book. And a friend of mine found it on the shelves at his local Barnes & Noble last night.
You know what to do!
Sunday, June 22, 2008
In DARK WHISPERS we get to know a little more about the world of the delvers. Here's another little sneak preview for you . . .
Chapter 4 Gnurflax
The musicians of Delvharken were trying their hardest. The drummers had worked themselves into a frenzy pounding on the carefully hollowed stones arranged in half-circles around them. The delver playing the skerzil bones had composed a new tune specifically for the king. The strange twang of the lizard gut harps tied the music together.
None of it distracted King Gnurflax; after a time he waved his hand to dismiss them. Ignoring the worried looks of his queen and Namza, his court wizard, Gnurflax left the great cavern and headed toward his private caves. But he did not enter those caves. Instead, he walked past them, to another cave, a cave forbidden to all but himself.
It was dark there, but delvers can deal with darkness.
It was silent, but silence in the underground world of Delvharken is not unusual.
He waited for something to break the silence, waited until it seemed every nerve in his body was strung as tightly as the lizard gut harps. Finally he whispered, "Where are you, friend?"
Today I received my first advance copy of DARK WHISPERS, all 464 sepia toned, gorgeously jacketed pages of it.
Not long now, gang. Not long now!
Friday, June 06, 2008
DARK WHISPERS: the Audiobook!
Last night I listened to the final CD of our recording of DARK WHISPERS "and even though I say it as shouldn't" (as the saying goes), I think it's pretty dang fabulous!
We're sending it off to repro next week, and it will be available the same time as the print version. I'm not sure if we'll have it up on Amazon right away or not - there's a big internal change going on at Full Cast Audio that might slow some things down. But you'll definitely be able to get it from the FCA website. (www.fullcastaudio.com - it will be posted in a couple of weeks.) We're also sending it off to Audible.com and Playaway next week, so it will show up in those formats, too.
And there's supposed to be an actual bound copy in the mail to me right now. I can't wait to hold it in my hot little hands!
Sunday, April 27, 2008
Covers Up on MySpace
I just posted the covers for all three of the books over on my MySpace page. The covers for Books 1 and 2 are the new paintings, but without the type or design work done. Even so, you can get a sense of how wonderful they are. The cover for book 3 is fully designed, but does not feature the final painting, as the artist did a revision of the way Cara looks.
Sunday, March 30, 2008
WANT TO SEE THE COVER?
If you want to get an early look at the cover of DARK WHISPERS, here's the link to Amazon where you can find it:
(Hmmm. I tried to make that clickable, but couldn't manage. You'll have to cut and paste. Sorry)
I say "early look" because the painting was actually revised after this version. The basic set-up is the same, but they changed the look of Cara. (I didn't think that was necessary, but, well . . . publishers.)
I'm really happy with the look overall, and delighted to announce that Scholastic has commissioned the same artist to do new covers for the first two books. In this regard I think I'm pretty lucky - this will be the third cover for INTO THE LAND OF THE UNICORNS, and I have liked every single one of them!
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Best wishes for a wonderful holiday season to all you unicorn fans out there!
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
DARK WHISPERS: The Audiobook . . .
Full Cast Audio (which I happen to run . . .) will be making an unabridged recording of DARK WHISPERS. We've just cast Cara and Lightfoot, and we're going to start rehearsals later this month. This is going to be a huge project. What's going to make it more complicated - but also more fun - is that I'll be able to continue to make edits while we're in the studio.
Just so you'll know, in the twelve years that I've been recording books - and working with some of the best authors in the business - we have never had an author in the studio who didn't find things in his or her published work that he or she wanted to change. But because we are completely true to the book, this can't happen (except in the case of flat out errors.) However since DARK WHISPERS will not be totally finalized, I will be able to make changes even while we're recording!
My pal Tamora Pierce did this when we recorded her new novel MELTING STONES - in that case because she wrote the book specifically for us to take to audio first. She was directing, and happily making changes all the way through. I can't think of anything better for an author than hearing a full cast of talented actors reading your book while you still have a chance to fix things. You just hear - and catch! - things in a different way when it's being read to you.
Can you tell I'm excited about doing this?
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
I have seen the cover for DARK WHISPERS, and it is a thing of beauty!
If I can figure out how to post it here (or get my webmaster in gear) I will. I really think that you guys are going to like it.
Pub date is solid for July. Length - about 450 pages!
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
To whet your appetites . . . below is the official catalog copy for DARK WHISPERS (another sign that it really IS going to happen!) ===================================
The Unicorn Chronicles #3:
By Bruce Coville
Keynote:At last—the long awaited third volume of the
is a riveting tale of two quests. In the first, Cara Diana Hunter searches for
an ancient story that may unravel the secret of a long enmity between the
unicorns and the monstrous delvers.In
the second, Cara’s father journeys to free her mother from the Rainbow
Prison.As Cara travels through the
strange and terrifying underground world of the delvers and to the court of the
centaur king -- her father travels from mysterious India to the depths of the
Rainbow Prison itself. Who can be trusted? Who is the enemy? Readers will be at
the edge of their seats with this multi-stranded story filled with wonder and
BRUCE COVILLE received over a dozen Children’s Choice
Awards, and has written more than 90 books, including My Teacher Is An
Alien, Into the Land of the Unicorns,
Song of the Wanderer, and The Monster’s Ring.He lives in Syracuse, New York.
Excerpt From Dark
The Dimblethum was passing beneath a quilpum tree when a low
voice whispered, “I know what you want.”
stopped, looked up. There was no one in sight. Even so, the voice spoke again.
“I know what you want.”
“Go away!” growled
the Dimblethum. He shook his head and started forward.
“I can go a world
away and I would still be close by,” whispered the voice. “And no matter where
I go, I’ll always know what you want. The question is, do you know what you
would give to have it?”
“Go away!” roared
wisssssh,” sighed the voice.
heard a rustling sound, then nothing. He waited in the silence for a long
moment, then leaned against the tree, covered his face with his paws, and began
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
Here's a brief bit from DARK WHISPERS:
Nedzik the delver
trotted unhappily at the rear of the cove he had been assigned to travel with.
The creature was a little over three feet tall, with a bulging head over which
scraggled a few strands of hair. His eyes, made for seeing in the dark, were
enormous. In contrast, his nose was a thin, upthrust thing that displayed two
large, gaping nostrils. His arms and legs were lean, but corded with muscle. He
wore a green tunic, and a grey, hooded cloak.
In these things,
he looked like every other delver in the cove. Where he differed was in his
feelings. While they were all confident in their task, Nedzik was swamped with
confusion — something delvers rarely experienced. The fact that the cove was
moving so rapidly toward its destination only made things worse, since he could
not decide what he should do when they reached it. Even worse, his time for
thinking was running out.
Of one thing he
was certain: The attack they were planning was wrong. No, more than simply
wrong. If they obtained what they were after it would allow King Gnurflax to
help the Hunters enter Luster, and that was a thought that filled him with
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
Too long, too long since I've posted here!
There's a lot of news, so I'll spread it out over a few postings.
First, I had a meeting with the in-house editor while we were both in Washington DC for the ALA (American Library Association) conference. She LOVES the manuscript! (Sigh of relief.)
So, that's the big news.
I'm going at the revisions hammer and tongs right now, and really enjoying myself. I love this stage of the work, when the story is worked out and shaped and now I can concentrate on honing it and making it better. (I used to feel exactly the opposite - loved writing the first draft, hated doing revisions. I think a lot of writers go through that transition.)
I may post some more previews as time goes on . . .
Sunday, December 10, 2006
I'm going to be meeting with my editor tomorrow. I hope to have some information then on actual publication plans for DARK WHISPERS.
Actually, first I have to find out what she thinks of it. I'm not sure she's even had a chance to read it yet. I'm trying not to fuss, but I am wildly eager to get her response.
Wish me luck!
Thursday, November 23, 2006
A Very Happy Thanksgiving to you all!
Tuesday, July 04, 2006
June went very well, until the last week when I had to go to New Orleans for the ALA (American Library Association) conference. It was a great conference, but it stopped me dead in my tracks as far as writing goes.
Whenever this happens it slows me down in two ways -- first, the days that I can't write, and second (and more frustrating) the days when I am trying to find my way back into Luster. There's a certain rhythm, and immersion, that occurs when I can work steadily on the book. Every time I have to break away for a while it takes me some time to get back into that mode. Still, I am moving again -- just not as fast as I would like.
Thursday, June 08, 2006
Progress, progress, progress! I'm up to page 392, and I think I've got a good chance of crossing the 400 mark by the middle of the month.
Of course, the important question is, "400 out of HOW MANY?" I mean, there's a big difference between getting to page 400 in a book that's going to be 410 pages long, and getting to page 400 if the manuscript is going to top out at 750!
The answer, naturally and alas, is: "I don't know." At a guess, I think I'll be able to wrap it up at about 500 pages, but that's just a guess. The thing is, having been stalled so long, getting to page 400 has a kind of milepost sense that I think will help keep me going. It feels like major progress to me.
The progress isn't just in the page count, either. I have an increasingly clear sense of how this is all going to draw together. It's not going to be easy -- the tapestry I'm weaving has become increasingly complicated, and pulling the threads together to tie them off is going to stretch me to the limit. But I do begin to see how it can happen.
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
Yay! I got two pages this morning, important new material in the second section of the book.
Monday, May 08, 2006
Though I've been so busy I haven't had a chance to post here, I have actually been making progress on the book. In fact, last weekend I finished the fourth draft of Part 1, which is called "The Anchor."
(At the moment, the book is divided into three sections: "Anchor" "Amulet" and "Axis Mundi")
Working on these revisions is absolutely necessary, of course. It also helps me move more deeply into Luster, so I can move forward in the story as the spring travel season winds to a close.
Saturday, April 29, 2006
Back at work at last! Only a page today, but I've begun the process (yet again!) of re-entering the world.
As I type these words, Perdita, the wicked office cat (as adorable as the Squijum and even more mischievious) is lying beside the keyboard, occasionally licking my knuckles.
Why the long lapse since I last posted -- or wrote? Basically the spring travel schedule has been extremely intense. And it's not over yet. I do a book signing today, then fly to Chicago for IRA on Monday. I fly home on Wednesday then leave early Thursday to drive to Pennsylvania to appear at the state library conference, where I'll be through Saturday.
All important things, but not, alas, conducive to lots and lots of writing.
Monday, February 27, 2006
Got another 3 pages this morning.
It's a relief to be back at work on this. I've had a particularly heavy travel schedule this month. That, combined with our work on recording WILL OF THE EMPRESS, has made it hard to get much writing done.
Today's work was not entirely new: it's an important scene I had deleted, and finally figured out how to work back in (which made me happy, because I didn't want to lose it!) The scene is in the first third of the book, in a section I've been trying to revise for some time. I've almost got it now, there's just one thing I still need to add. I think I'll postpone that, though, and try to push on toward the end.
I'm actually working on the fourth draft of the story. That may seem odd, since the book is unfinished, but often -- especially in a long book -- I'll get partway into a story, then back up and start again. The good part about that is that when I finally get a completely finished draft, the first part is pretty well polished. (Of course, even then there's still a lot of work. I did 8 or 9 drafts of WANDERER to get it right.)
Anyway, this is one more stumbling block out of the way. Now it's back to the final section of the book.
Monday, February 06, 2006
Got another 2 pages this morning. I'm not quite sure where I'm going to put them; I have several strands of the story going, and I just need to catch up with some of the characters.
I must admit to some pleasure in getting anything done right now. We're in rehearsal to record Tamora Pierce's WILL OF THE EMPRESS, and I usually don't manage to write during rehearsal and recording periods, since there is so much else going on. Knowing that I'm going to have to report in here makes a nice spur.
Next challenge is travel, since I head off on Wednesday for a four day trip to the Educational Paperback Association. If I can keep working on this while I'm on the road, it will be a very good sign indeed.
Sunday, February 05, 2006
Got a page done yesterday, but the page count for the day was actually negative, since I also cut three pages of a chapter that I had started that just wasn't working.
This morning I got a page on one of the Dimblethum chapters (there is a whole strand of this story that deals with the Dimblethum) and then got back to work on an early section of the book that I am expanding and redoing. Once that's in place, it will be easier to move forward. And this afternoon, I'm going to spend some time working on the map of Luster that I should have done two books ago.
(When I told Tammy Pierce that I didn't have a map, she was unable to speak for several moments, which doesn't happen often, let me tell you! It was a silence of pity, I think . . . )
Friday, February 03, 2006
This morning I finally managed to finish rewriting a chapter that has been standing in my way. I've got Cara heading off in a new direction, that will lead her to some of the final meetings that will bring this book to its conclusion. Progress!
Thursday, February 02, 2006
So, here it is February, and I've managed to get some work done on HUNT for both days of the month so far.
Yesterday I spent the day with my wonderful writer's group, who have been listening to the book in bits and pieces over the years, and giving me good advice as I go along.
Anyway, added two pages yesterday, and another page today. When I get some of the "repair work" I'm doing on an earlier section finished I'll come up with a current page count, and then start posting updates so you can see how the book is progressing.
Monday, January 30, 2006
My wonderful webmaster has provided me with something I've been wanting for a long time -- a way to post here on a regular basis and keep you updated on the long, long, long, long, long overdue third book of the Unicorn Chronicles.
Okay, the bad news is, it's still not finished. (SORRY!)
The good news is, the work is moving ahead. I now have about 360 pages, which means it is considerably longer than SONG OF THE WANDERER already. The bad news is, I still have a long way to go! The good news is, that means it's going to be a nice, long book, for those of you who like that sort of thing. There are some new characters I think you'll really enjoy, and some strange discoveries that I'm only beginning to understand myself.
Now that I have this tool for communicating, keep watching this space for regular updates. I'll tell you how much I've written, when I've written it. (For example, I got two new pages this morning.)