Progress Report

My part of the second round edits for All the Paths of Shadow is nearly done.  I'll be shipping it off in a day or two, much improved I hope.

I really like this book.  It's a complete departure from the Markhat series, but I think it has a charm all its own.  I hope readers agree, when it hits the stands later this year.

The target audience for All the Paths of Shadow is young adult, and believe me, that's a tough crowd.  I'll be competing with a wild variety of flashy electronics and social media for their attention.  I think I would have loved the book, as a kid, but then I was a pretty weird kid so my opinion is almost certainly worthless in this regard.

I tried to make my characters strong ones.  I think that's one aspect of the Harry Potter books that made the series such a commercial juggernaut.  Harry and Ron And Hermione are loyal and brave and true to each other.  Hermione is a wonderful female character, too -- she's smart, tough, and self-assured.  Contrast Hermione with Bella from Twilight, and I think you'll see what I mean.  Hermione will never let her self-worth be dependent on some dude, vampire or other.

I'm not directly comparing my book,  All the Paths of Shadow, to the Harry Potter series.  They are wildly different; mine has elements of steampunk, for instance, and my protagonist is 18 when the story begins.  I didn't set my book on Earth.  My magic is a lot more like electrical engineering.  Heck, at one point Meralda the heroine even does math as part of the magic.  She also invents the electric light shortly before the book begins.

So I guess I'm hoping geeks like me will flock to the book.  Ladies too.  I purposely put Meralda down in the middle of a grumpy, bearded Old Boy's Club setting so she could set out to prove she was as smart as any of them.

But I should shut up about Paths of Shadow now.  Readers will vote with their wallets when it's released, and no amount of blathering on my part will affect that event in the least.

In other news, my persistent post-pneumonia cough is nearly gone.  I can breathe again without sounding like a mortally wounded bagpipe.  I feel ready to take up the chainsaw again, and start whittling away at the storm debris still lingering in the back yard.  Maybe this weekend.

One final note -- if anyone out there is on Google+ and feels like adding me, I'd be very grateful.  I need to keep up with the latest things you crazy kids are doing on there here Interwebs.

So email me!