Mirror of Heaven

I have happy news to share! Well, sort of. Now that I think about it, it’s probably happier news for me than my fans, since it’s really just a teaser as far as you guys are concerned. At any rate, I’ve turned in the edited version of The Starless, my stand-alone novel coming out next summer. I know, I know, I wish I could tell you it was coming sooner, but Tor Books has chosen it as a focus title for the season, and that’s the slot that was available in the publishing schedule.

And it’s good to have plenty of lead time for this book in order to figure out how to best package and market it. I haven’t written a lot about it yet. There are a couple of reveals that could make for great talking points… but they could also diminish the experience of discovery for the reader. So I’ll probably wait to see what direction the sales and marketing team takes, and go from there.

For now, I’ll describe it thusly: “Epic fantasy with a dash of pulp horror, The Starless is set in a vast archipelago where the children of heaven—the fallen stars—walk the earth in the form of strange and fantastic gods. It is the story of Khai, trained in the arts of killing and stealth by a sect of warrior priests in the deep desert, destined from birth to become the protector of Princess Zariya in the Court of the Sun-Blessed.”

This image on the homepage, a photo of the world’s largest salt flat, located in Bolivia, served as inspiration for a pivotal scene. If I recall correctly, this was actually brought to my attention by a reader who posted a link on my Facebook fan page , saying, “This seems like the sort of thing that might interest you.” It was!

In the meantime, I’m pleased to announce a couple of upcoming appearances. I’ll be at Motor City Steam Con in Detroit on July 14-16, and the Myths and Legends Convention in Denver on August 4-6. I hope to see some of you there!

So what’s next? Right now, I don’t know yet. I’m trying to take some downtime, to actually read books for pleasure and refill the creative wells. It’s hard to remind myself that this is an important part of the creative process, especially during such a weird and tumultuous time in our nation. Sometimes it feels more productive to hunker down in front of my computer and scroll through Twitter.

It’s not, though; that’s just an illusion. I will try harder. And speaking of reading for pleasure, since we’re coming upon the summer season here in my hemisphere, allow me to suggest that if you haven’t read the Agent of Hel trilogy, check out Dark Currents which is the first volume and a fine beach read. My local library’s book club is currently reading it and planning to meet to discuss it a nearby vineyard.

I think that’s an excellent idea!