Lots of stuff

Hello my Imaginary friends,

I love Autumn! Halloween, cooler weather, PUMPKINS, and everything else that goes with this season. (Although this year I’m seriously missing the conventions and the parties.)

It’s a good thing I love this season because mentally and physically, it sucks. I’ve always thought it was stress that made this time of year hard, but I’m starting to realize it’s allergies and season changes.

Spring and Fall are the hardest on me. My hands ache, I feel anxious and weak. Then there’s my allergy symptoms which include fatigue, coughing, stuffy nose, nasal pressure, and trouble sleeping.

I’m seriously looking forward to snow. The snow covers the ground and freezes the allergens and reflects more light. Overall, when nights freeze and snow comes, I start feeling better. Until the melt anyway.

Book 2 of the Gates of Westmeath is cruising by. We’ve been writing since early October and have already finished the first third. I’m hoping we’ll be done the book by Christmas.

I’m impressed by how easy it has been to write this book. Hopefully that holds out for the next two thirds.

It’s hard sometimes, realizing the authors and creators who make things you love are human. Sometimes not very nice humans. I wrote about my disillusionment before.

So it was nice to get a reminder that there are good people in the world when I saw this facebook post:

Thank you Tamora Pierce for being an awesome person. If you haven’t read anything by her, I highly recommend all her books. We named our daughter after one of her characters.

Completely unrelated I have the most adorable cape:

Thank you for reading.

Stay safe and be kind,

Éric

Writing is Hard, Publishing is Harder

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

I’m not asking for help or for advice, I just need to vent.

I’ve been writing my whole life. First novel was started when I was ten. I started writing seriously (meaning I actually finished my novels and stories) a dozen years ago. My first book was published in 2016 after 6 years of rewrites and re-submits.

My sixth book has just come out and I’m feeling a little frustrated. I feel like every book I publish is getting less readers, less reviews, and less interest. I have a lot of little easter eggs and details that cross between books and I’d love to hear someone geek out about them. (Other than my wife, mother-in-law, and daughter.)

I know part of it is caused from not seeing anyone, other than family, since March 2020. I miss talking to other authors, readers, and fans at conventions and in person.

My last two books have been launched digitally and it doesn’t give me any time to chat with one person at a time.

So I guess I’m both sad that my books aren’t reaching more people and that I can’t talk with people.

There’s hope for both cases; my publisher has recently gotten a distribution and promotion deal for all their books. And Health Canada is currently reviewing Pfizer’s vaccine for 5-11 year olds and they say that 4 and under isn’t far away.

I have high hopes for Assassins! Accidental Matchmakers (the book Jen and I co-wrote) next year. It’s set to be released in Fall and hopefully we can have an in-person release party. I’ll also hopefully be able to attend Can-Con that year.

Part of the distribution of new releases for my publisher means that some of the the books get placed in bookstores. The most recent wave, several amazing authors have had their books in stores. (Mine isn’t because it’s part of a series and they don’t put book 3.5 when they don’t have 1-3.)

I look forward to seeing Assassins! Accidental Matchmakers in bookstores. I hope it gets all the attention it deserves. It’s a fantastic book.

Thanks for reading.

Stay safe and be kind,

Éric


Here We Go Again

Hello Readers,

In case you missed it, Jen and I wrote a book together called Assassins! Accidental Matchmakers. It took us two and a half months and was a wild ride. Renaissance Press loved it and will be publishing it in Fall 2022. It’s the first in a trilogy or quadrilogy, called The Gates of Westmeath.

I took some time to finish Elizabeth 4 and now Jen and I have started writing book 2 of the Gates of Westmeath.

We finished the first two chapters this week and I’ll be starting on chapter 3 today.

We’re super excited and can’t wait to share the first book with you. So excited we made shirts for the whole family.

It’s had the adorable (and awkward if in public) side effect of having the kids screaming “Assassins family!”

Well as they say, I should be writing.

Stay safe and be kind,

Éric

Books, Beards, and way too much face

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

At Renaissance CON (June 2020), S.M. Carrière noticed my beard that I started growing out in January 2020. She mentioned it was an impressive COVID beard and I said, “It’s a novel beard. I’ll shave when I finish this darned book.”

Fast forward to last week and I finally finished the darned book.

Here are pictures of a wild bearded author who just finished his book (and received another):

And now here are the pictures of a newly sheared author who has much too much face for his own liking:

You can get any of my books at your local bookstore, or if you’d like, you can buy them on our website under the header of books.

Thank you!!!

Be kind and stay safe,

Éric

It’s all done except the crying.. uhm editing

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

The Mystery of the Dancing Lights is done. Now comes my least favourite part of writing, editing. Yuck.

Thankfully my awesome Weditor has been through the book and I’ll hopefully be able to apply her edits by the end of the week.

That means if all goes well by end of the week, I’ll be able to submit my book to my publisher.

I made a promise at last years Renaissance Con to shave my beard when I finished this book. It’s gotten a little unwieldy, so I’m looking forward to that. Expect some before and after pictures soon.

That’s about it.

Off to the editing mines for me.

Stay safe and be kind,

Éric

Almost Done

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

When I returned to work after Dragon was born, I tried to finish a novel and gave myself until December 2017 to finish it. I failed and put that novel away for future writing.

In January 2018, I started writing The Mystery of the Dancing Lights, my fourth Elizabeth novel. I worked hard on it and it changed from a simple summer camp story to a time loop novel. I’ve re-written my outline for this book a dozen times.

I decided I needed to dig deep and finish it after Jen and I finished Assassins! Accidental Matchmakers. Somehow I managed to get this far.

I’m now writing the last chapter and hope to be done the writing of the novel by the end of the weekend or next week.

I’m hoping to submit it to my publisher by the end of the month and get it in for 2023 with my publisher.

Okay well, I suppose I should get back to it.

Thank you for all your support!

Stay safe and be kind,

Éric

Process of writing

Kennedy and Jason, in their first iterations, appeared in our D&D game in 2010. Kennedy Fairfield was Kennedy Lake, and she was a kindergarten teacher who had an affinity for guns. Jason Johnson was Giles Momoa, and he was a Mafia leader that the player characters had to interrogate. Kennedy rolled a natural 20 and did something fancy, getting his attention, and they flirted and eventually became romantically involved. The other players liked him too, and he kept coming back into the game. When that game ended, we played a superhero game, and Jen played Giles’s niece, a 6 year old water creator named Chelsea who couldn’t control her creation. She appears in our book as Brooke, Jason’s niece. After that game ended, that was it; we put them all aside.

Fast forward ten years, and we didn’t really remember the storylines from the game, but the characters really stuck in our heads (although we had forgotten most of their names, other than Kennedy’s first name). And then we started discussing potentially writing a book about them, together.

We started off by talking about it A LOT in Fall 2020. Then on Jan 1, 2021, we sat down and wrote jot notes for the first Act. We split the book between us by main character and alternated chapters (minus a couple places in Act 2). When we finished the first Act, we made jot notes for the second. And again for the third.

We have a separate document for the cast of characters and important locations, with descriptions about each so we could stay consistent.

We wrote in Google docs. After each chapter, the other person edited, and then Jen read it aloud to Keladry (4.5yo). She picked up on a lot of repetitive words and typos that way…

It worked really well for us, but we understand why it wouldn’t work for everyone.

We finished the first draft on March 14, 2021.

More than half of the words Jen wrote were written on her phone while nursing Adrien (18-20mo) to sleep!

Lots of writing late at night happened. Éric would bring his laptop to bed and write while Jen was nursing Adrien (when it was his turn to write). Occasionally, we’d get a nice chunk of time in the middle of the day when the kids were playing well together, and we could write.

One memorable occasion, Jen wrote 4k words during our daughter’s virtual school day while she (Dragon) was paying attention to the teachers. :O

11 Years?

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

Yesterday was the 11 year anniversary of me finishing my first ever novel. Viridian Skies was poorly plotted, filled with contradictions, and the only thing more cringy than the sex scene are the fight scenes. Its very much written like a D&D game and not like a proper novel.

I’d like to revisit the core concept of the story someday, but for now it’s locked in my writing folder.

I have to give the novel credit though, it taught me a lot about how to write and helped me start to develop my style. It also taught me to avoid three-chapter fight scenes.

Most importantly it taught me that I was able to to finish a novel and that gave me the push I needed to do NaNoWriMo and write a novel called The Mitten Wizard (Available now from your favourite bookstore as A Study in Aether.)

Since 2010, I’ve finished another 6 novels on my own and co-wrote two.

One Wednesday, I reached a milestone of 2/3rd done in my current writing project. I started it in 2018 and I’m so close I can taste it. I’m hoping to have it done by mid-September to submit to my publisher for a spot in their 2023 catalogue.

So if all goes well, I should have another 2 novels completed by the end of the year. (Jen and I are writing the sequel to Assassins! Accidental Matchmakers in October and the last one took us 2 & 1/2 months.)

The world might be shit right now and I’m feeling like crap (I hate ragweed season), but I’m proud of the writing I’ve done this year.

I hope your creative endeavours go as well or better than mine have.

Stay safe and be kind,

Éric

Publishing, Co-writing, and Life

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

As you may have read in yesterday’s post, the book Jen and I wrote in winter 2021 has been accepted by a publisher. Renaissance Press is growing fast, lots of amazing authors, anthologies, and books. I wasn’t sure they’d have room for us.

This is going to be my 7th book (Book six Coffee Shop Between the ‘Verses comes out on September 15th.) and I’m always nervous about submitting. This is the first novel that I’ve submitted only to Renaissance, normally I go through the motions of sending them to agents, editors, and contests. I submitted Everdome to a dozen agents and twice as many companies. I received two nice rejections and a lot of silence. I realize that’s what it’s like to be an author. So glad Renaissance accepted this book and that we didn’t need to try to get it out to other, less open, publishers.

One of the joys of this book is the enthusiasm and excitement of my co-author. Her enthusiasm keeps me on track and excited while her excellent writing forces me to up my game. We each have strengths that compliment each other.

I assumed it would be very easy to tell who wrote what parts, but our styles must mesh well because most of our beta readers couldn’t tell which sections were mine and which were hers. I think that’s really cool and I look forward to writing more with her.

Now that this book has a contract we’re hoping to start work on the sequel soon. I’d like to get a little further into Elizabeth 4, which is taking me forever. So I’m hoping mid September or early October. Meanwhile, Jen has started a spin-off novel and we’ve written a short story collection.

Things are about to get really hectic here. Dragon and Jen have decided that it’s best for the kid to go to digital school full time in the Fall. That means a complete change in bedtime schedule for both kids. I foresee a lot of meltdowns and lack of sleep in late August and early September and that’s just for me.

Hopefully we’ll all be vaccinated by Christmas and Dragon can do her last semester of Kindergarten in person.

Stay Safe and be kind,

Éric

The Last Three Books of Everdome

Hello Everdome Historians,

All my novels are connected. One of the threads that connects them is the fictitious books called The Everdome Series.

In canon, the characters only know about the first ten books.

  1. The Skies of Everdome
  2. The Children of Everdome
  3. The Heroes of Everdome
  4. Demetrius of Everdome
  5. The War of Everdome
  6. The Eagles of Everdome
  7. The Thirteen Gods of Everdome
  8. The Wilds of Everdome
  9. The Beasts of Everdome
  10. The Fate of Everdome

These are Jason’s favourite books.

Everdome is available as an Ebook or Hardcover at Renaissance Press’s Website. It’s Also available as an ebook at AmazonIndigo/Chapters, and Kobo.

In my novel, Everdome, it’s discovered that there are 3 more novels:

  1. The Shame of Everdome (unpublished in World)
  2. The Lost Dome (unpublished in World)
  3. Everdome (unpublished in World)

Now before you ask, yes, I do have plots and synopses for all of the other books. I hope to someday turn them into shared universe multi-author books. I also plan on writing a campaign setting for my RPG FADDS set during the time of the books.

For now, however, you can read more about the world of Everdome at your favourite bookstore.

Thank you,

Éric