Wednesday, July 29, 2015

A Late Breaking Review

It's interesting to me as an observer to this whole blog roll/blog tour thing as to when and how the blogs come out.  As the authors we have access to a list of who has agreed to review the books and what days the blogs are scheduled to appear.

So, here's one that popped up since the last time I checked the schedule:  "My Writer's Camp."  Here's some of what he had to say in his 'good' column:

 The characters in this book are fabulous. Their flaws and talents are doled out with a pace that does not overwhelm the reader, but makes the characters feel so very human and familiar despite their supernatural gifts. The tension between them, both sexual and emotional, is perfect and enhances the story without becoming a dramatic focus that takes away from the adventure. The villains are despicable and the supporting characters are unique without overwhelming the story....

If you're blinded right now, that's because I'm over here BEAMING with pride.  I'm so, so gratified every time people point out how fun an interesting the characters are in Song of Secrets.  As a reader myself, characters are the thing I latch on to more than anything else.  I can be impressed by a good world-build, but if the characters are only 'meh,' I'm far more likely to bail.

In fact, my friend (and fellow writer)  Naomi Kritzer have been talking about some of the books that are up for the Hugo this year, as we're both voting members this time around.  I admitted to her in email (and now to you all on this blog) that I had ended up giving up on Ann Leckie's Ancillary Sword and Three-Body Problem by Lui Cixin entirely because I never really cared all that much for the characters in either.  Both those books are really deep in when it comes to world-building and plot... but I just never latched on to anyone (because I will keep going if there is a side character I'm interested in.)

At any rate, this is a yay!

An Interview

Today, I have something slightly different for you!  One of our blog roll/tour folks did a joint interview with Rachel Calish and me:

Also, I'm not sure that I've ever mentioned it here at this blog, but I've been doing a book review gig myself over at Bitter Empire.  Today, I talked about The MartianDuct Tape and Math for the Win


Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Roll, Roll, Rollin' Along

The reviewer today (another Rachel) didn't have a lot to say, but it's still a very nice review:

A lot of the reviewers are anxiously waiting for Book 2.  I certainly hope that Rachel and Level Up Press will be able to give it to them.  For myself, I've had to take a step back. I won't be involved in subsequent books in the School for Wayward Demons series.

As I have said many places, I really enjoyed the writing process with Rachel, particularly when we were collaborating on the plot-light web version of this story.  I can not even tell you how much joy (and hope) that brought me.

But revising was a particular nightmare, in part because we were constrained by having to follow the structure of what we'd already published on the web.  And, as happens with two strong personalities with very different writing styles, there were also creative differences... and I left that process feeling that Rachel and I had very different values when it came to storytelling.  We're both award-winning authors. so it's impossible to say that one of us is right and the other wrong. In fact, I think the fact that we're both so passionate for our art is the reason we had so many difficulties.

This was not an easy decision for me to make, especially given that my current publishing prospects are fairly bleak and, as I said, the initial process of writing with Rachel was so tremendously fun and valuable for me.

On the other hand, I know there are plenty of you out there who might be just as happy at the idea that I plan to use this opportunity to focus more on my own writing.  I have UnJust Cause to finish, and there are other novels and characters in my head who are dying to get out and onto the page.

So, while I am saying goodbye, I wish Rachel and Level Up Press the very best of luck in the future.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Reviews Keep Rollin' In....

As the blog roll/blog tour continues, we now have two more to check out:  Reading with Pixie, which of course is my favorite because the character they most related to was Gabe, and For the Love of Fictional Worlds.

Rachel contacted the people involved with setting up the blog tour and the issue of crediting everything to Rachel alone seems to be resolved, at least somewhat.  So that's a big yay!