New York, New York

A week ago, I was packing for my first business trip–itself a strange experience, and another of those sure signs that I had left my childhood behind (another being how my birthday on Wednesday being a thing entirely devoid of pomp, circumstance, and cake). The experience was perhaps made a little stranger by the fact that I had compounded my work trip with another work trip, because such is my life.

I’d been flown up for a publishing sales conference–a surprisingly brief affair–in which we made the Simon & Schuster sales force aware of the titles coming out in our Fall season (between September and December), they made some suggestions about branding and marketing for said books, and I kept my mouth shut. I’ll be putting together a video for my notoriously spotty YouTube channel on the trip soon, but that piece will be a deal more meditative than informative, I think, and so I thought I’d enumerate the hard facts here for those curious about such things.

1. I do not have a release date for Empire of Silence just yet, but I can tell you that the earliest it can be out now is June 2018. DAW has its Spring schedule filled out already, and due to delays beyond all controlling, I did not make the cut. My suspicion is that the release will actually be closer to the start of Fall 2018, perhaps in September, but that’s just a gut feeling. That may actually be ideal, as I will certainly be at Dragon Con both this year and next, and launching AT Dragon Con would be positively righteous.

2. I will know more about the release schedule for certain come the end of June. My new editor, Katie, said she has another book to finish editing first and then it’s my turn! That does mean I have a little time to wait, and April always was the cruellest month, but that’s all right. Waiting will give me more time to finish playing Breath of the Wild, and honestly the fact that I haven’t finished it already is a badge of shame weighing heavily on my soul.

3. That being said, Katie and I spent about 7 hours on Sunday talking though the series as a whole and getting a plan sort of worked out, and I couldn’t be happier. I’ve every confidence that we’re on the right track now to deliver the very best version of the story, and if that takes a little more time to prepare, then it takes a little time to prepare. I’ve been waiting for this since I was 8-years-old. I can wait a little longer. Still, having one’s first book come out when one is 25 is slightly less awesome than 22, but I WAS 22 when I sold it. #NeverForget.

4. I also have permission to start working a bit on book 2, and my aspiration is to have book 2 finished and delivered to my publisher well in advance of the release of book 1. I don’t want to get stuck in a rut and leave everyone hanging. Besides, I’m happiest being productive, and the 10000 words I’ve already written in the sequel are all pretty glorious so far. I think it’s off to a really great start.

5. On a tangential note, I can 100% confirm that the short story anthology I’m editing with Tony Daniel, Star Destroyers, will be out in March of 2018, on the 6th to be precise. It’s shaping up to be quite a fun little collection, with stories from David Drake, Michael Z. Williamson, Sharon Lee & Steve Miller, Jody Lynn Nye, and myself–along with several other Baen mainstays. My short story in there, “Not Made for Us,” will give us a ground-level view of the Empire’s war with the Cielcin, as a Legionnaire is thrown into battle with those monstrous xenobites without any warning at all. So 03/06/2018, Star Destroyers, mark your calendar.

6. I haven’t started sending out that other short story I mentioned–the one with the Catholic priest and the android. I’m waiting to get some fresh eyes on it first, because I don’t want to bungle it. I’d love to actually sell something to one of the magazines.

7. It may well be that I’ll be editing at least 2 more anthologies with Baen Books in the coming year/year and a half. More on that as it develops.

As a final note, I’m absolutely thrilled to have met everyone: Betsy, Katie, and my agent, Shawna. The whole thing feels more real now than it did before. I’m really going to be an author. It wasn’t all some sort of dream I was having. I have to wait a little longer than I’d thought, sure, but that’s a small price to pay for ensuring the book’s release is as well-planned and felicitous as possible.

That’s all I know, friends! The YouTube video won’t be out today–it usually IS the first–but it will be along this week.

Stay human!

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