Yes, I’m well aware that no plan survives contact with the enemy and that fate laughs at us puny humans planning for the future – nowadays more than ever. But here goes anyway.
The first item on the list is completing and publishing Ashes of Empire: Imperial Echoes. I’m past the one-third mark and progress is steady, but not as quick as I’d hoped, which means it’ll probably come out in February and not January. That always happens when I’m deep into world building and in this case, it’s intensive since the story concerns Lyonesse’s soon to be nemesis, the Wyvern Hegemony, which took a different path over the many generations since the empire’s collapse.
Then, I’m looking at the third Ghost Squadron and the third Constabulary Casefiles. I don’t know in which order I’ll work on them just yet but I have the high-level story concepts, and since I like playing with graphic design, I have the covers done up as well.
Finally, there might be a new Siobhan Dunmoore story fermenting in the back of my mind. I’m not sure yet, but there are stirrings. In any case, I have a cover idea already done up, though the title might change as the ideas take shape.
Four books in 2021? Not impossible, provided life doesn’t throw me any nasty surprises. After all, I managed three in 2020, and the first of those three took almost six months. And since we can’t travel to our usual destination over December and January, I’ll be here, at my desk, putting in productive writing time instead of pleading with underwater critters to pose for artistic photographs.
My editor has done her thing with A Colonial Murder (Constabulary Casefiles #2). It will now undergo proofreading, and should be ready to publish next week. The paperback cover, hardcover dust jacket and ebook cover are ready to go. I’ve not put it up for pre-order this time around because my schedule and my editor’s were a little more uncertain. But keep an eye on this space, or if you subscribe to my mailing list, your email inbox next week.
In other news, I’m two-thirds done writing Deadly Intent (Ghost Squadron #2), meaning it’ll come out in October, and our new fence – very nice looking, by the way – is up. Since it’s made from PVC, that fence will outlast Mrs Thomson and me. The squirrels, on the other hand are finding its slick surface a pain after years of running along gently decaying wood. I’m not sure, but I think a few of them scolded me yesterday. I guess you can’t please all creatures great and small all the time.
The summer is already almost two-thirds over. And what a weird summer it’s been so far. Still, there’s more to come. Our twenty year old cedar fence, which remains standing mainly out of habit is coming down at the end of the month, replaced by a PVC fence that should outlast me. It’ll be an interesting week around the Casa de Thomson, followed by another interesting one 3-4 weeks later, when the house’s outside envelope finally gets replaced after almost fifty years – new siding, soffits, fascia, gutters and downspouts. That’s the upside of the travel ban: we can redirect our disposable funds to home renovations that were coming overdue.
Edited to add: Heh! No sooner did I publish this that the fencing company contacted me to see if we were ready for them tomorrow. That, friends, is 2020 in a nutshell: adapt and overcome. Our neighbours on one side are away on holidays. They’ll find the new fence in place when they return. Surprise, surprise!
In other news, my editor is still busily working on A Colonial Murder (Constabulary Casefiles #2). Initial feedback is good, which means I shouldn’t face much work in terms of finalizing it, so I think we’re still on track for a late August release date. In the meantime, Deadly Intent (Ghost Squadron #2) is more than halfway written, so I think an October release date is feasible.
Finally, since humor is important, I leave this sign of the times for my fellow Army veterans, who’ll get the joke. Those who don’t can look up “Claymore Mine” on infogalactic.com
I just emailed A Colonial Murder, the second Chief Superintendent Caelin Morrow investigation to my editor. Provided she finds no major issues, I think a release date at the end of August is in the cards. In the meantime, I’ll be working on Deadly Intent (Ghost Squadron #2) whose first three chapters are already written.
The dust jacket for the hardcover is already done, as you can see below:
I finished writing A Colonial Murder (Constabulary Casefiles #2) earlier today, and like the previous Caelin Morrow adventure, nothing is as it seems. But she has friends in strange places these days, so things don’t turn out the way the bad guys planned. Intrigue, corruption, murder, and an old threat await her on distant Mission Colony where shadowy commercial interests are spinning a web of lies and deceit. Will Morrow solve the riddle of who is honest and who is on the side of darkness before she’s off the case? Stand by. It’ll take me at least until the end of July before it’s ready for my editor. This one is an interstellar anti-corruption case for the ages, with hints of military action. If you liked The Warrior’s Knife, you’ll love A Colonial Murder.
There’s nothing quite like a sunny summer Sunday to lift one’s spirits. Cold, gray winter is about as far away in the past and future as it will ever be during the course of a year. Since both our spring and summer trips to dive coral reefs have been cancelled, this is about as close as we’ll get to our favorite climate. The odd BBQ meal prepared with spices from the islands also helps. But the money we’re not spending traveling will be spent carrying out a lot of maintenance on our almost fifty year old house, so there’s practical good coming out of the suspension of international travel. Still…
In other good news, I’m two-thirds done writing the second Chief Superintendent Morrow investigation, A Colonial Murder. As things progress in my twenty-sixth century interstellar Commonwealth racing headlong to ruin and the birth of empire, Morrow’s current story line is intersecting with that of Ghost Squadron, something which will likely happen more often than not. It’s one of the reasons why I rebranded the Morrow series as Constabulary Casefiles, since I’m writing about more than just internal affairs investigations at this point. The rebranding also allows me to explore the broader Constabulary role in the collapse of the Commonwealth. I’ve told my editor she can expect A Colonial Murder sometime in early August, which could mean an early September publication date. Then, it’s on with Deadly Intent (Ghost Squadron #2) which takes place, chronologically speaking, immediately after A Colonial Murder. I’m hoping to get that one out by December.