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Posts Tagged ‘onyx court’

all the audio that’s fit to hear

I’ve managed to accumulate a small pile of audio news for y’all!

The big one is that at long last, the Onyx Court series is getting an audio treatment, courtesy of Blackstone Audio. Midnight Never Come came out last week; you can pick up that one from Apple or from Audible. The rest of the series will follow in due course!

I’ve also been doing a pile of audio stuff with Serial Box, starting last year. So far they’ve put up ten of my short stories and novelettes: “Daughter of Necessity,” “Coyotaje,” “Love, Cayce,” “Once a Goddess,” “The Genius Prize,” “At the Sign of the Crow and Quill,” “Mad Maudlin,” “A Mask of Flesh,” “What Still Abides,” and “Nine Sketches, in Charcoal and Blood.” But the big news here is that they’re going to do some of my novellas, as well! Deeds of Men was already done as an audiobook some years ago, and I don’t hold the rights for The Eternal Knot, but they’ll be recording audio versions of Dancing the Warrior and the two Varekai novellas, Cold-Forged Flame and Lightning in the Blood. I’ll announce those here once they’re done!

Who left this thing on?

Going into 2020, I set myself a lower goal for short stories than before, because I suspected the election might cut into my creative energy. (Hah, what an innocent lamb I was.) But when I decided to participate in the Clarion West write-a-thon — you can still sponsor me, by the way! — I included among my goals “finish two short stories,” because I didn’t want to lose momentum on those entirely. I chose my phrasing on purpose: finish two short stories. I had one partially written, and another which in theory is done, but the first draft is so meh that it needs a white-page rewrite anyway.

Right now I’ve got three finished stories, none of which are those two. Also a semi-outline for a fourth, and a nascent concept for a fifth.

It feels like the valve labeled “Short Fiction” has somehow gotten jammed in the “open” position. It started in early June, when I went to add an idea to my file of short story concepts, and my eye happened to fall on one I’d completely forgotten about. A quick dash of research later, I had a story.

Then I turned my attention to an idea that’s been in my head for over a decade, ever since I ran the Changeling game that gave rise to the Onyx Court novels. The big stumbling block on it — as with many of my short story ideas these days, honestly — was the research; I needed to find a suitable book or two to read before I could write it. But I figured, hey, I might as well look for such a book, right? Well, I found something . . . and then I read it . . .

. . . and I was halfway through a draft when a different short story idea mugged me out of nowhere, in response to an anthology call. And let me be clear: that isn’t how this usually works. I’ve written to themes when actively solicited for an anthology, but my brain is not very good at coughing up themed ideas the rest of the time; it would rather work on the two dozen ideas already in existence. In this case, though, the theme touches on a different bit from that Changeling game — something I never brought up in the Onyx Court books, but which I’d always figured was true somewhere off in the background.

Roughly twenty-four hours after reading that anthology call, I had a draft. A couple of days after that, I went back and finished the other story I’d been working on.

Oh, and that “semi-outline” for a fourth story is entirely the product of me being in the shower and then suddenly BOOM, a three-word elevator pitch grew into scenes and a conflict and I could pretty much write this one as soon as I nail down the specifics.

So yeah. I now have “999 Swords,” “Oak Apple Night,” and “This Living Hand.” (Internet cookies to anybody who can identify what those titles refer to!) I have written my first new Onyx Court fiction since “To Rise No More” in 2013, and I’ve ordered a book that might help me nudge another one toward the finish line. Not to mention that I still have those two things that are what I expected to be working on during the write-a-thon, which I can probably finish this month.

I’m not sure what’s happened, but I like it.

Soundtracks on Spotify!

Last weekend @hannah_scarbs asked on Twitter whether I had the soundtracks to my novels on Spotify. To which the answer was no — but now it’s yes, because that made me realize that putting them up there is an eminently sensible idea. Of course not everything is available on that service (in particular, all of the Battlestar Galactica scores are absent, and I’ve drawn heavily on those over the years), but the vast majority were there! So if you want to know what my soundtracks sound like, now you can give ’em a listen. And if you want to know what each track maps to, I’ve also linked to that information for each book.

The past and the future

cover art for ARS HISTORICA by Marie BrennanThe past: Ars Historica is on sale now!

The past is prologue . . .

Kit Marlowe. Guy Fawkes. Ada Lovelace. Kings and sailors and sainted nuns populate these seven stories of historical fantasy by award-winning author Marie Brennan. They span the ages from the second century B.C.E. to the nineteenth century C.E., from ancient Persia to the London of the Onyx Court. Discover the secret histories, hear the stories that have never been told — until now.

The future: if you are able to vote today, please do.

Ars Historica is now available for pre-order!

In ye olden days of publishing, short fiction tended to have a half-life of about .17 seconds. If you didn’t read it in the magazine issue where it was published, too bad; the issue went off the shelves, and unless you stumbled across it later or the story was reprinted in a “best of” or single-author collection, you might never see it again.

cover art for ARS HISTORICA by Marie BrennanBut with ebooks, that doesn’t have to happen, because collections are so much easier to do now. I’m pleased to say that Maps to Nowhere has been selling splendidly since it came out last month; next month it will be joined by Ars Historica, which collects my historical fiction and historical fantasy. I have more of these planned, too, but they’ll take a while — I have a wordcount range I’m aiming for in each collection, in order to make them roughly novella-sized, and the other three I’ve got planned all require me to sell another two stories or so (and then wait for those stories’ exclusivity periods to expire).

In the meanwhile, here’s the Table of Contents for Ars Historica, which you can pre-order from a variety of places here!

Table of Contents

WITH FATE CONSPIRE now out in the UK!

If you’ve ever wished you could have a matched set of all four Onyx Court novels, now you can!

UK cover for WITH FATE CONSPIRE

Midnight Never Come, In Ashes Lie, A Star Shall Fall, and With Fate Conspire are all out now in the UK, in a lovely set of matching trade paperbacks. They’ve also had a few errors cleaned up, the dates reformatted to British style, and the spelling Anglicized, so on the whole, I feel comfortable in calling this the author’s preferred edition. 🙂 Get ’em now, while the getting is good!

UK covers of all four Onyx Court novels

Available now: IN LONDON’S SHADOW, an Onyx Court omnibus

It’s out!

cover for IN LONDON'S SHADOW: AN ONYX COURT OMNIBUS

For centuries a faerie court has lain hidden beneath London: a place of shadows and intrigue, where the city’s immortal inhabitants can watch and manipulate the mortals above. Through two royal dynasties, through rebellions and plots, through war and plague and fire, the Onyx Court endures.

Now the court’s first two centuries are collected in a single book. This omnibus contains the novels Midnight Never Come and In Ashes Lie, as well as the novella Deeds of Men, the novelette “And Blow Them at the Moon,” and the short story “Two Pretenders.”

You can buy this from fine e-tailers all over the internet, chief among them Book View Cafe, but also Amazon US or UK, Barnes and Noble/Nook, Google Play, iTunes, Kobo, or (for the Canadians among you) Indigo.

Now available for pre-order: IN LONDON’S SHADOW

cover for IN LONDON'S SHADOW: AN ONYX COURT OMNIBUS

For centuries a faerie court has lain hidden beneath London: a place of shadows and intrigue, where the city’s immortal inhabitants can watch and manipulate the mortals above. Through two royal dynasties, through rebellions and plots, through war and plague and fire, the Onyx Court endures.

Now the court’s first two centuries are collected in a single book. This omnibus contains the novels Midnight Never Come and In Ashes Lie, as well as the novella Deeds of Men, the novelette “And Blow Them at the Moon,” and the short story “Two Pretenders.”

This is my latest (or rather, next) project with Book View Cafe: an omnibus of the first half of the Onyx Court series, short fiction as well as long. It will be out next Tuesday, at which point you’ll be able to obtain it from BVC or Barnes and Noble; right now you can pre-order it from Amazon (or Amazon UK), Google Play, iTunes, or Kobo.

And I have to be smug for just a moment . . . because that cover image? That’s a photo I took, when I was in Switzerland earlier this year. So hey, this particular hobby has a practical side!

It’s a twofer day: COLD-FORGED FLAME and A STAR SHALL FALL!

cover for COLD-FORGED FLAME

It’s out!

PLEASE NOTE: this is a novella. Which is shorter than a novel. I already anticipate there will be reviews to the effect of “I thought I was getting a whole book but I wasn’t” — novellas are making a comeback, but they’re not yet so widespread that the occasional reader won’t be blindsided by the shorter length.

But if you want a whole novel’s worth of stuff, I got you covered there, too!

UK cover for A STAR SHALL FALL

That’s right — at long last, A Star Shall Fall is out in the UK! Unlike the previous two Onyx Court books, this one has never been published in that country before. Only one more to go, and you can collect a full matched set . . .

(And if you think this is a big day, wait until April 25th of next year, when you’ll get Within the Sanctuary of Wings [Memoirs of Lady Trent #5] and Lightning in the Blood [Varekai #2] on the same day!)

All the news that’s fit to print

I have survived our housewarming party, and with that in my tail-lights, let me catch up on a few things. And by a few, I mean a lot.

Like my newest Onyx Court story! “To Rise No More” is the tale of Ada Lovelace’s childhood friendship with faeries, and also her ambition to build herself a pair of wings to fly with. No seriously, I didn’t even make that part up. (The wings, not the faeries. But she did also refer to herself as “Babbage’s fairy helper,” so, y’know. Maybe not that part, either.) It went up at Beneath Ceaseless Skies on my birthday, which I found to be excellent timing.

Shifting gears to a different series, the Barnes and Noble blog has just revealed the cover to Lightning in the Blood, which is the upcoming sequel to the still-upcoming-but-will-be-out-next-Tuesday Cold-Forged Flame. As I said on Twitter, I didn’t know until I saw it that one of my life goals was to get a Giant Hunting Cat onto a book cover, but I can check that off my list now!

And while I’m at it, I’ve finally gotten an excerpt from Cold-Forged Flame posted to my site. One week — one week and it will finally be out . . . .

Also, I’ve been busy with the Roundtable Podcast, hosted by Dave Robison and Marie Bilodeau. And I do mean busy, as I’m in not one but two episodes. The first is part of their “Twenty Minutes With” series . . . which, with the introduction and everything else, wound up being more like Fifty Minutes With. But dear god, the introduction alone is worth it: Dave Robison has a habit of describing his guests in epic terms. I have never heard my own life sound so much like a superhero origin story.

So that’s the first episode; the second is part of their “Workshop” series, wherein a writer (or in this case, a writing pair) describe a project they’re working on and then get feedback from the assembled hosts. We dug into an urban fantasy premise for this one, a setting where a new drug is causing people to develop magical powers, and had lots of thinky thoughts on both the way the drug fits into the world and how to write the “psycho ex-girlfriend” trope in a sympathetic and complex manner.

And finally, I’ve got myself a brand-new setup on Imzy. Where by “brand-new,” I mean “there’s basically nothing there yet” — but I figured I should mention, for those who are busy exploring this new site. Then, having done that, I decided to spend my other community-creation slot on putting together one called Dice Tales, which is a spin-off of the blog posts I’ve been doing at Book View Cafe. Speaking of which: the most recent installments there are “Keeping Up with the Joneses,” on power escalation over the course of a campaign; “With Great Power,” on the GM’s ability to screw players over and responsibility to use that wisely; “GNS,” on Ron Edwards’ old Gamism-Narrativism-Simulationism framework; and then a two-parter that consists of “Game Planning I – Arcs, Acts, and Chapters” and “Game Planning II – Sessions and Scenes,” which are pretty much what it says on the tin. But the Imzy community is not just a place to reblog those posts; I’m hoping it will become a great discussion of storytelling in RPGs more broadly. So if you’re on Imzy and you find that kind of thing interesting, come on over!