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Category: Marlaverse

A Much-Needed Void

New story online: “A Void Wrapped in a Smile” at Basement Stories. A novelette! Meant to be a standalone, though also sorta kinda a Marla Mason story (though she’s only in a scene or two) — it’s about Joshua Kindler, a character from my novel Poison Sleep. (Thanks to Arachne Jericho for asking me to write a story about Joshua. I’m not sure I managed to make him sympathetic, exactly, but I tried to make him comprehensible.)


Speaking of Marla, Grim Tides made the front page of Kickstarter today as the featured fiction project. Sweet!


We got a final copy of the trade paperback of Briarpatch at A Certain Magazine today. Holy crap, is it gorgeous. I’m so happy.


I thought I had another novel to announce imminently, but the publisher has asked me to keep the pseudonym a secret until after it comes out, so, uh, I’ll tell you in a year or so? This will be the fourth separate byline I’ve had on a novel (counting T.A. Pratt), and my fifth byline total, including the ‘nym I use for porn short stories. I don’t really mind; at least I’m working. And I have a few books coming out under my own name next year anyway. I remain a Man of Mystery.

Ill Met in Ulthar

After a month of Being Lazy, I’m gradually ramping back up to productivity. I wrote a story, and I’m researching a novel project, and I did copyedits for Venom In Her Veins. I’m about to dive in (ha, ha) to Grim Tides. (Speaking of, the Kickstarter fundraiser is running for a couple more weeks. There’s still time to sign up and get e-books, a chapbook, a sketch, signed copies, Tuckerizations… And if I break $10K, I’ll commission original cover art. Tell your friends! And your generous enemies. For those who’ve already donated, thank you! And I’m trying not to mention the fundraiser every day, so consider this me showing restraint.)


So that story I wrote: I did it mostly over the weekend, and it’s called “Ill Met in Ulthar”. About 7800 words. It’s a Marla Mason urban fantasy story that’s also a sword-and-sorcery story. It’s partly an homage to the great Peter Phillips story “Dreams Are Sacred” (which was simultaneously science fiction and sword-and-sorcery), and I name-dropped a character from that story to make the inspiration clear to Those Who Know. (I’m making it sound all esoteric and recursive, but it should be perfectly understandable even for people who haven’t read Leiber or Lovecraft or Phillips — I just put in some small markers to let my fellow hardcore fans know where my influences and inspirations came from.) Let’s hope the editor likes it!

Alternate Donation Methods for Grim Tides

Some people have said they want to donate, but don’t want to make a Kickstarter account to do so. Since I’m already funded at Kickstarter, it doesn’t much matter at this point — if you’d rather donate directly to me, I’m happy to accept, and I’ll make sure you get your prizes! (See Grim Tides kickstarter page for the prize list.)

(Click image above to donate by PayPal, or contact me if you’d rather send a check/money order)

New Dos Santos Art

Artist (and current Hugo Award nominee) Daniel Dos Santos has given me the go-ahead to post the new artwork he did for the upcoming audiobook editions of Bone Shop and Broken Mirrors. (The audiobooks aren’t available for download yet, but rest assured, I will link them vastly once they are.)

Bone Shop:

Bone Shop cover

Broken Mirrors:

Broken Mirrors

That Bone Shop image in particular will haunt my nightmares. In a good way. My thanks to Steve Feldberg of Audible for commissioning this cover art, and to Dan for painting them!

ETA: Dan just wrote to let me know his assistant Lindsey Look helped paint these (they had a short deadline, so collaboration was the only way to get them done). Lindsey is an awesome artist too — check out her work!

Grim Tides Kickstarter Launched (and Funded)

This entry is going to have a slightly different tone than I’d anticipated…

Yesterday I launched a Kickstarter fundraiser for Grim Tides, the proposed sixth full-length Marla Mason novel. I didn’t do an entry about it yesterday because I just didn’t have time — I was at the doctor with the kid until early afternoon (he got a checkup for his glaucoma, and everything looks great), then playing catch-up at work. I figured I’d tweet about the fundraiser and write to my mailing list of past donors on the first day, and just do a journal entry on day two.

The fundraising goal was $6,000. (Not an entirely arbitrary number; it’s about what I could get for doing another work-for-hire book or pseudonymous novel, so it was the amount I needed to justify writing a Marla book instead of chasing down another job.)

I got fully funded in just about 13 hours. So the book is definitely happening; I hope to begin serializing chapters very early in the new year.

The fundraiser is running until September 15. (I did not expect to meet my goal in a single day.) I am still happy to accept donations, of course, and there are various neat prizes to be had, as you’ll see if you check out the Kickstarter page. So while I’ll still exhort you to tell your friends, and donate if you can, it doesn’t have quite the sense of urgency I’ve anticipated.

I get to write this book. It will be awesome. Full of monsters and heroism and betrayal and sand and sharks and lava and resort hotels and possessed people and dispossessed gods. Thanks to everyone who made it — who are currently making it! — possible for me to continue this series. I couldn’t be happier.

Voids and Briars

It’s been a busy year. I’ve written 210,000 words since January 1 — that’s two full novels (City of the Fallen Sky and a pseudonymous book), plus a story or two and some miscellaneous non-fiction. I can take off most of August without needed to feel guilty about it. Though in practice I don’t think I’ll actually be lazy for more than another week at most. I like writing; once my brain is less exhausted, it’ll start generating ideas again, whether I want it to or not.

Let’s see, some things on the horizon. I signed the sig sheets for the limited edition of Briarpatch — the most times I’ve consecutively signed my name in my life. The limited is no longer available, I understand, but the trade paperback is available for pre-order: you can get it at Amazon, or via Powell’s, or from a whole slew of places listed at the publisher’s website.

I also have a story coming out in newish online magazine Basement Stories at the end of the month. “A Void Wrapped in a Smile” is a standalone story, but it’s also sort of a Marla Mason story (though Marla appears in only one scene, and is a very minor character here). It’s a story about the villainous lovetalker Joshua Kindler. “Void” doesn’t necessarily make him seem any less villainous, but it does, I hope, make his villainy more understandable. (This story was originally written for a very generous Broken Mirrors donor who gave me a lot of money in exchange for writing a story about a character of their choice. They got a limited-edition-of-one chapbook containing the story. We were both pretty pleased with how it came out, and I’m glad the rest of you will get to read it soon!)