is up for pre-order! I submitted cover and files to kdp Amazon the first day they allowed me to (and still keep a publish date of Feb 1st). Part of me feels super prepared. Parts of me feel overly nervous because book 2 isn’t as ready as book 1 was at this point, but I am setting aside more writing time than I was a year ago. So, here goes.
Oh, and check out the lovely cover art!
I spent an entire week fine-tuning the blurb (and sleeping off a cold, but still). That seems like a lot of writing time (and begging-friends-for-advice-time) to spend on 130 words, but it’s worth it. The blurb is much better than it was a week ago, and I have lots of people to thank for that (little brother at the top of the list!).
And, because I find this fascinating, you get to see the comparison. Here’s last week’s blurb:
After royal tragedy, Lana, Symon’s childhood friend, is thrown into court life. Deadly enemies surround her on every side and watch her every move. High Lord Ozar persecutes animal shifters openly, and he lets Inurites have free rein in the kingdom. Now the heir, Lana will have to keep from drawing fatal attention to herself while she tries to protect the citizens of Arton. She can rely on no one but herself, but will she be enough?
Meanwhile, on his own and pursued by assassins, Symon will cross the land of Barido in search of a haven and answers. Can he survive in foreign lands? Now a beggar, a thief, and an outlaw, he uncovers secrets about the whole land. Despite facing pirates, thieves, and slavers, Symon’s biggest struggle will be learning to forgive himself.
Not awful, but not great. It mostly only speaks to people who’ve read the first one. Here’s what I have today:
He never wanted to kill the King. She never wanted to be Princess.
After the death of his father, the King of Arton, Symon is on the run from his own people. He forges a new identity for himself as an outlaw who opposes the persecution of animal shifters. Despite facing pirates, thieves, and slavers, Symon’s biggest struggle will be forgiving himself.
As Arton’s new heir, twelve-year-old Lana is thrust into court life. She mourns for Symon, but she soon realizes that his loss puts her, and the kingdom, in danger. When Regent Ozar threatens animal shifters, Lana goes undercover to protect citizens of Arton.
Both Symon and Lana will have to decide whether justice is worth fighting for . . . or even killing for.
I love the parallels with the first book’s blurb, too. The four paragraphs are one way the blurbs are similar. Anyway, notice that I basically only have two sentences that survived the editing process. The “thrown/thrust into court life” and “Despite facing pirates . . .” sentences.
This is typical of my storytelling and editing process. I literally cannot think of a single scene from 2009 (second year of writing the story) that made it into Royal Deception as a published book. There are lines of dialogue that I kept, and ideas, but no scenes made the cut (the bandit attack is the closest, but originally that happened when Symon was 8, and Lana wasn’t there). Am I that bad a writer? Can I not put down a decent first draft? Or am I that picky? Probably a bit of both. Even Brandon Sanderson says he doesn’t write good first drafts, so I don’t feel too bad about it. It is more time consuming, though.
Advice for today: kill your darlings. (This means to edit out the scenes and paragraphs you are in love with. When I find myself wanting to keep a scene for one piece of well-said dialogue, I know I need to kill the scene. *sigh*)
PS, the book match game has over 300 titles. It’s not done (nor will it ever be), but I am ready for suggestions.