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Doing some tidying up, both physical and virtual, and came across the email conversation with my editor discussing the recently submitted draft of Lord and Master 2, and my plans for the third Lord and Master book. *Detailed* plans, and whether what I had in mind would fit in with Loose Id. But with a comment that if a job resulted from one of the interviews that week, it would take a while to write.

That conversation was five years ago this week.

It wasn't just the new job that resulted from one of those interviews, although that basically chewed up six months of all of my time and energy. A lot of it was one medical issue after another over the last four years, starting with the vicious viral infection that started a couple of weeks before Redemption 2009 and wouldn't go away.

At least now I'm back to being able to write reasonably consistently for stretches of several weeks at time, and did actually manage to complete the first draft of a short novel over the last 7 months, in spite of a couple of interruptions. That doesn't mean L&M3 is going to get worked on any time soon -- it's a complex story that needs to be very carefully managed and will take some time to write even if I'm fully fit and can give it my undivided attention. Realistically, I'm better off doing another one-off short novel I'd outlined last year, and getting Nice Tie up to submission standard. Any serious work on it is at least a year off, I suspect. Bit I do still intend to write it some day.
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I generally don't point at reviews of my books, even the good ones, unless it's one where I personally asked the reviewer to look at the book. But every so often there is a review that makes an author think, "Yes! They got what I was trying to do! It worked!" And Jenre has just posted such a review of Lord and Master.

[exit, bouncing]
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Sent a review request off to Rainbow Reviews a while back, and now have a review of Lord and Master:

The review mentions the cover art by Anne Cain. There's a CafePress shop for Lord and Master, and another for the Taking Work Home cover art, also by Anne. I don't make any money off these (I'm not allowed to by the terms of my contract with Loose Id) -- they're there mostly so I can get odd bits of promo stuff to use at cons. But a couple of people have asked about teeshirts and prints, so that's where you can find them.
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Had an email from Loose Id today saying the renewal contract for Lord and Master is in the post. I thought it was already on the auto-renewing contract, but since I'm a couple of hundred miles from my hardcopy files I can't check. Hard to believe it's almost two years since the book first went on sale. It's now making me feel guilty about the utter lack of progress on the current WnotIP, which is L&M3. I did a few hundred words a couple of days before Christmas, and have done nothing since until this morning when I opened the file over breakfast to see if the new section makes sense when I read it cold.

I'm also a couple of hundred miles from my home net access, which means I'm still not getting a chance to do anything more than a quick skim. I *have* seen the posts about a potential nine-and-sixty-ways setup, and am interested but will get to them when my access is more reliable.


Dec. 19th, 2008 11:29 pm
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Just finished the first draft of the first two chapters of L&M3, which are Steven's and Mark's POV on Steven's 50th birthday. Which is very appropriate, as when I first outlined these two chapters six months ago, I decided to set Steven's 50th birthday on the last Friday before Christmas -- which is today.

Of course, if I hadn't started a day job around the same time as I was doing that outline, I might have a complete rough draft by now. I feel somewhat aggrieved that it's taken me this long to get back to writing, when I consider that I used to come home from work and turn out a few hundred words of fanfic every night. On the other hand, I was some years younger, and had a rather shorter commute...
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My latest book, Lord and Master 2: Taking Work Home, is now also available at Fictionwise -- with a 15% discount in the first week. There's an excerpt at Fictionwise, but you can also find more excerpts and free short stories from the series on my website.
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Brain now only 10% mucus rather than 90% mucus, so I can more or less think again. But I'm inclined to leave the writing alone for at least another day, as I'm probably still in a state where I'll end up ripping half the words out again once I'm compos mentis.

Instead, some thoughts on developing the WIP, L&M3.
Read more... )
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Lord and Master 2 cover art - gay romance novellaIt was just an office affair, with wonderful sex. Young scientist Mark Paulson liked older men, especially tall, dark, and very handsome men like his new boss. Self-made millionaire Steven Frost had no trouble finding sex, but what he needed was a friend who shared his interests; someone like the young assistant he'd just hired. What started as simply great sex between friends has become much, much more, and now they're engaged.

Life's never that simple, of course. Other people have an interest in Steven's welfare and Steven's money, and they're not about to let the pretty little PA half his age take control of either. There's a reason why Steven was still single at the age of forty-four, and some of his family are intent on ensuring that Mark finds out about it the hard way.

But Mark already knows -- true love is about more than champagne and roses.

To read an excerpt, visit: http://www.loose-id.com/JJLoAMa2ex.aspx.

Genre: LGBT Erotic Contemporary
Length: Novel
Price: $5.99

More excerpts and a free prequel story at http://www.julesjones.com/fiction/details/takingworkhome.html
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This weekend's project was updating the website for the forthcoming release of the new Lord and Master novel. If you find any broken links or other glitches, please let me know. New material added:

free novelette Old Age Creeping Over Me

details page for the new novel, Taking Work Home:

three excerpts from the novel, linked from the details page

series information page, with a timeline, some background information, and links to the CafePress shops for the cover art:
(I'll probably add more information to this over time.)

And I created a CafePress shop for the new book's cover art, which is probably mostly of interest to me, but if anyone else fancies teeshirts or prints of that pretty cover art, that's where you'll find it. I've also created a cover art calendar that uses the three pieces of cover art [livejournal.com profile] annecain has done for my books (L&M, L&M2 and Dolphin Dreams). It is very, very pretty and I am regretting that postage to the UK makes it impracticable to get myself one any time soon.
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Lord and Master was only supposed to be one book, my take on the classic tycoon/secretary romance with the classic HEA ending. Except, as so often happens, I then had a few ideas about what happened next. After all, they had to wait nearly two years between Steven's formal proposal and the day they could legally get married.

I ended up writing a trio of linked stories about the year after Steven proposed to Mark, looking at how they learnt how to make the relationship work outside the office, and the way Steven's family reacted to their relationship. The second and third stories, about Steven's family, are to be published by Loose Id in late August as Lord and Master 2: Taking Work Home.

Old Age Creeping Over Me is the first story of that set. It has rather less plot than the other two, which is why it's not in the published book. :-) But several people had asked to see something from Steven's point of view, so I wrote this for them. It's set on Mark's 26th birthday, two months after the end of the main story in Lord and Master.
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Just finished going through the first round of edits on Lord and Master 2. Not a huge amount needed, but it shows very clearly why having a fresh pair of eyes is A Good Thing. Raven caught several places where it would be either confusing or outright off-putting for an American reader, and pointed out the places where it needed some more tightening and some repetition removed. I *knew* it still had a bit of waffle where I'd said the same thing one or two times too many, but I was too close to the story to see where cutting was needed and which one should be cut. As for the tightening -- I may flinch as I do it, but I follow my editor's advice and murder my darlings [sigh]. If she makes me cut the curtain scene any further, I will put the original version in a friends-locked post for the amusement of my fanfic friends, who can then roundly mock me for my curtainfic.

Job to do over the next couple of weeks, when I get time -- self-edit on the piece that will be going up on my website as a giveaway.
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The cover art for the Lord and Master sequel arrived today. Copy under the cut, as it's rather more NSFW than is usually the case with my cover art. [livejournal.com profile] annecain's done another lovely job.

cover art )
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No, I'm not telling you what it is other than it will soon be Soon(TM). Mostly because I'm not sure what the current policy is at LI on telling the readership exact publication dates, and I'm too tired to trawl through my mailspool looking for clues. However, I assume that it being included in an email listing forthcoming release dates means that it is well and truly officially contracted, even though the contract hardcopy hasn't made its way back across the Atlantic yet.

I have also seen a very early draft sketch of the cover art. *I* like it.


Jun. 30th, 2008 09:23 pm
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Only a couple of hundred words over the weekend, but this morning I started putting together a timeline for the Lord and Master series, and then got carried away and started doing the character sheet as well. This was in lieu of actual word count, but it wasn't pure cat-vacuuming. The time line is moderately important in this series, and if I write the third book I will need to refer to the timeline for the existing two books, and keep a careful check on what I'm doing with the new text. There are also enough minor characters that I really need to keep track of names and relationships and relative ages somewhere other than inside my head, so that I don't end up having to skim the previous 120 kwords to double-check the continuity.

On the other hand, it has not so far been necessary to add detailed descriptions of body parts. Madame Editor fell over laughing when she was presented with the character descriptions for the Syndicate series. Apparently it was the first time she'd had a character sheet that specified cock length and comparative ball size. Well, two authors, and we needed to make sure we didn't lose track of who was the bigger man in various departments...

In spite of which, added another 500 words after lunch, and the count currently stands at 2438 words. A chunk of that is likely to end up deleted or moved to another place, but it was a chunk I needed to write to establish stuff in my mind, even if it doesn't make it as far as the final draft, so I'm pleased with it anyway. After which I got tired and wandered off to watch a Dr Who DVD over dinner (the only episode from series 1 I hadn't yet seen, plus the other half of the two-parter). I'm now looking at the file and finding that I really am stalled, so this is probably a good point to leave it at for the moment. I need to tinker with the plot concept for a bit and just jot down any ideas before having another crack at serious wordage on this one. Which is good timing -- tomorrow is a new month, and time to start on a new project. I've been working solidly on contemporary romance for nearly a year, and I want to switch back to cross-genre for a bit.


Jun. 27th, 2008 11:32 pm
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Back to work, with 1700 words on the opening scene of a new book. Which is a sex scene... I don't normally open a book with a sex scene, but in this case it's the third book of a series, and they've already had some 120,000 words of story prior to this scene. In fact, they've been very happily married for a couple of years at this point.

Don't get too excited, [livejournal.com profile] growlycub. It's just that I had the idea for the opening chapter of the third book, and thought I might as well get it scribbled down while it's there. Once I've got this chapter out of the way, I'll probably go back to the urban fantasy that got interrupted last year, and let the main plot idea of this one ferment for a bit before trying to write it.
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It's taken me since yesterday, but I have just finished the book description and cover art forms for Lord and Master 2, and emailed them back to the relevant person at my publisher. I hate doing this bit of paperwork, because it's like writing the synopsis, only with added trauma. But it is done now, and I think the only remaining item is to check and post the hardcopy of the contract. That's for tomorrow, as I've been at this so long today that it's past closing time at the post office. And after that I can stop worrying about it until the edits show up.

A cheery bit of paperwork arrived, in the form of this month's royalty statement. A brief glance shows that I finally have numbers for the initial Fictionwise sales of the first Lord and Master book, and Dolphin Dreams. I think I shall spend a bit of this evening number-crunching.


Jun. 22nd, 2008 04:28 pm
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I suck at titles.

The working title of the Lord and Master sequel is "Another day at the office". This title sucks for a variety of reasons, not least being that a title for a romance ebook should ideally be four words or less.

I am currently wrestling with the "about this book" paperwork required for the book production process at my publisher, and Mistress Allie would doubtless like the paperwork returned to her this weekend. I need to produce an actual title if I don't want to see the working title on the cover, or worse yet be prodded by my publisher on the subject of sucky titles. Thus, the ritual whine on LJ and/or usenet in the hope that detailed whining about being stuck will free up the gears in the confabulator. (As the other rascafarians will confirm, it's surprising how often this works.)

I do hope I don't have to repeat this process later this afternoon when I get to the cover blurb. I thought I'd scribbled some notes, but as usual I can't find them.
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Lord and Master cover artThe new short story about the characters from Lord and Master is now available on my website. It's set on Mark's thirtieth birthday, about two years after their wedding, i.e. some time after both the original novel and the forthcoming sequel. This is a standalone and you don't need to have read the novel first, though obviously you'll get more out of it if you already know the characters. For those who wanted to see something from Steven's POV, here's your chance. Around 7100 words, contemporary m/m romance, one sex scene.

Flight of Dreams

Comments on the story are welcome. Comments are also welcome on any broken code on the page, as I'm still getting to grips with CSS. :-)
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First draft of the short story just finished, at 7167 words. I shall now go and make a cup of tea, and then come back and run the spell-checker before putting it up for the crit group to tear apart. Should have it ready to post in public later this week.

Of course, I still need to come up with a title. I suck at titles. :-(


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