Monday, November 2, 2015

Happy Book Day--Remembering the last 13 years of Obloeron

Update: The Nook link is at the bottom. -- SMS

When I was in the closing stages of this renewed edition of THE OBLOERON SAGA, I had promised myself that I wouldn't cry. I didn't cry when I finished the final edits (both times). I didn't cry when I finished the first drafts, save the first one--and there were plenty of emotional moments during those two-plus years, let me tell you. I don't cry often (at least that's what I tell you here).

So you may be a bit shocked to hear that I cried the other day. Yup. I did.

I was in the office upstairs, getting everything finished and nice and tidy for you. I had all of my files, all four of them, formatted. I had inserted Deborah Levinson's wonderfully written Foreword into all four files. I had the blurb and all the details about the SAGA ready. The cover? Ready to go.

I uploaded to all four simultaneously (Nook, however, wouldn't process until this morning). Kindle and Kobo went straight to publishing for pre-order.

Smashwords... ah, Smashwords. It was while Smashwords' famed "Meatgrinder" went about its business of getting the book out there that all the memories of the last 13 years came whizzing through my mind......

The memory of wanting to write a simple story about a halfling. I had percolated in my mind for a few months while I sold cell phones at the mall. I then recall sitting down in my bedroom on Jan. 4, 2003, my first Gateway computer fired up. I had named the initial file YanosKingsfoil.doc. The first four chapters came formed, and I wrote them in a few weeks. I had the first line of what was then chapter five written... and then I stumbled.

I eventually finished chapter five some six months later, in between dad's funeral and his burial.

Dad, I hope you're watching. I hope you're proud of the author I have become. I did it.... and I miss you.

I had put those first five chapters on the shelf afterward and let the story marinate a bit. It wasn't until I heard R.A. Salvatore speak at the Westminster Public Library a year or so later did I decide to return to the novel--I had told my mom as we left the library that I would finish that book after I heard Bob say that "There is no such thing as writer's block." Less than a week later, I had my brainstorm about Krampel Paddymeyer. It was just an idea and didn't come fully formed at the time. I pressed myself to write those last 80,000 words or so in THE QUEST FOR THE CHALICE; I celebrated hard when I made it to 100 pages of manuscript.

I had wept Christmas Night 2004, when I thought I had lost the entire manuscript (friggin' 3D models of the save icon). I breathed a sigh of relief when I had recovered it.

I worked and worked and worked until I had my manuscript. I got right to work on book two.

I wrote book two a little faster than book one. I wrote book three, and I had my trilogy. After a few other books, I started writing my prequel stories. I wrote a series of short stories in 2009. I remember family of friends taunting me for my weird-sounding character and places names.

I published the original trilogy shortly thereafter. I felt so proud of what I had done. I did the same with more books, and more books. My skills improved.

I recall re-reading it in 2013 and discovering that it was crap. I shelved it. I removed it from sale.

I didn't want it to see the light of day again.

And then... I decided, with my present skills, to return to Obloeron. It was time. I took the short stories I had written and figured how to weave them into the story. There was a question of taking one and attaching it to the end of the third--then unreleased--prequel, but instead I decided to use it as a connecting piece. I took another, polished it up, and attached it to the start of my first novel from nearly 13 years ago.

I started re-writing the novels where they needed re-writing. That took a few weeks, before I started to salvage (and as I've already noted, that was a good thing).

I let them sit for a while. I returned to them in July of this year, then again in September.

And now... they're back. Six books, including the previously unseen third prequel novel, KRAMPEL'S REVENGE. Happy Book Day, Sean. Happy Book Day.

If you pre-ordered the box set, thank you. If you're thinking about buying it for only 99 cents, know that you're buying a project that has touched my heart and my life more than any book series ever should.

If you're new here, enjoy the ride.

At the moment, this is the only available edition of Obloeron: On Friday, I took down the two existing individual prequels for the time being: I need to update the covers and re-brand, and right now is not the time, financially-speaking, to do that. Besides, you're getting all six books for .99 cents instead of paying $2.99 each. Doesn't exactly make sense to have them all up right now, does it?

Here are the links:

US Kindle
UK Kindle


And now, a quick word about the future of this particular world:

The last short story in this series was intended, in 2009, to be the jumping-off point for a sequel series; obviously, I took the George Lucas approach with this entire saga, writing the second three books first, then go on to write the first three books second, then drop the series entirety. It was completely unintentional.

Once I started writing the AGENT series some seven months later, I put the sequel series of Obloeron on the shelf. I started enjoying a great deal of success as a thriller author (I still do), but there is a part of me which would love to go back to that world and cause a little damage. And seeing that I'm currently in the first draft stage of an unrelated fantasy novel (more on that next week, I think), there is a desire in my heart to go back to Obloeron and write a few new books in the world.

But--and this is a pretty huge but here--I will only do so if there is a call for it. If the SAGA sells well and it is well-received, I'll start brainstorming next month. We'll get a cover made, and we'll get the book out.

Only if there's a call for it.

Let me know.