The sales figures aren’t bad today, but I don’t have a single customer review on amazon.com and therefor have absolutely no idea of how my book has gone over with the reading public. In fact, I probably can’t prove there is a reading public.
Behold! in Kindle format will cost you $4.99. In paperback (so you can read it in bed, like I do) it’s an exorbitant $18. I think that’s less than it costs to go to the movies anymore. Yeah, that’s another nice little amenity in life that’s pretty much vanished. Unless you don’t mind shelling out for yet another comic-book movie with a wokie subtext… but I digress.
So how about it, Ms. and Mr. Public? Do you like the book? Don’t worry about crushing me by saying “no, it was bloody awful.” ‘Cause I know it isn’t!
Our landlord saw me doing something yesterday which made him look twice.
“You’re reading your own book–that you wrote?” he marveled.
I could’ve said, “Oh, how about that! I thought there was something familiar about it!” But instead I just explained, “When you write a series of books, like I do, it’s so easy to forget details as you go on from book to book. You’d be amazed by the things I forget.”
That’s all true.
Now jump ahead to the next book, The Ocean of Time. For that book I tried something very challenging and only rarely seen–a double climax. In fact, I can’t think of any examples of one, just now. So part of the job of Behold! was to set the stage for events covered in the next book–
Which it does! And don’t ask me how, because when I was writing Behold!, the next book wasn’t even a half-formed thought. And yet the one book flows beautifully into the other. I really have no idea how that happens. Give God the glory.
(After Ocean of Time comes Ozias, Prince in Peril. That would be 2,000 years before the present time in Obann.)
Ah, there it is! Kirk DouPonce’s wonderful cover for the next Bell Mountain book, Behold!
Those fearsome-looking men are some of King Ryons’ chieftains, former Heathen who are now servants of the true God. But who’s the old lady? And how has she provoked such an alarmed reaction from the chieftains? A few of you will be able to guess rightly; but if I’ve played my cards well, most of you will be surprised!
I must resist the temptation to spoil the surprise by telling you what it is.
Hopefully we can get Behold! available to you in time for Christmas. But that’s not in my hands.
I’ve been very busy this afternoon. I have to edit Behold! and provide some material which our artist, Kirk DouPonce, can work up into a cover.
But we do have a hymn request from Susan–Speak to the Mountains, by Chris McClarney. You might find the lyrics reminiscent of a Psalm.
Above is pictured one of the critters encountered by Helki the Rod in Lintum Forest: it plays an important role in Behold!, Book No.14 in my Bell Mountain series. I lost a lot of time to illness, but today I’ve finished the first round of editing–and contacted our cover artist, Kirk DuoPonce. Let’s see what he can come up with.
What would happen if a piece of advanced technology from an extinct civilization fell into the hands of people living 1,000 years later? What if the finders wished to use it–although they have no understanding of such things?
And then there are those ships, the first to cross the ocean from the west since Obann’s Empire was destroyed. Will they bring some new disaster with them?
I hope we can get this book on the market in time for Christmas. Next year, maybe The Witch Box will be ready, double climax and all. And I’m looking forward to warmer weather so I can start writing the life of King Ozias. If you like these books, there’s a lot of fun in store for you.
We have no plans to add Oy, Rodney to our schedule. My wife would like to see the adventures of Abombalbap in book form, but I think that might be beyond my powers.
I can’t take any more nooze today. It makes me feel like crying. I just want to get back to work editing Behold!
But first another hymn: Gloria in excelsus Deo, sung by the Libera Boys’ Choir.
“Glory to God in the highest…” Amen.
Okay, it wasn’t quite that cold yesterday. But it was cold enough.
Last year I finished writing Behold! on literally the last day I could have finished it–no more good weather until the spring.
Looks like I’m in the same boat this year.
Yesterday it threatened rain all day and was just too cold. Under 50 degrees, the ink just won’t come out of the pen. Today it’s under 50, but maybe I can find a sunny spot.
Some of you wonder why I have to write outdoors. Well, there are too many distractions indoors. The worst are those nuisance phone calls: “Hello! [in thick Indian accent you could cut with a knife] This is Brian O’Shaughnessy from Acme Spindulators…” Those just wipe out my concentration. Conversely, I find the trees and the sky and the birds good for my concentration. They help me see the scenes I’m writing about.
But I am definitely running short of days, so one more blog post and then maybe the sun will be high enough to create a warm spot for me somewhere. I’m dealing with a ship that’s been at sea for 40 years and I have to do something about it.
Well, saddle up, we’ve got a ways to go…
Okay! I’ve written the first few pages of my new book, as yet untitled–although I do have a chapter title: “The Blow Will Fall on Durmurot,” the most indefensible city in all Obann.
I do need a book title, but that, I pray, will come. I worked outside until it got too hot: indoors, we get too many nuisance robo-calls. I will soon know how many times I can say “Bite me” to a robot. Not much point to that, although I do need to vent from time to time.
Poor Durmurot. All they want to do is produce enough copies of the Scriptures to distribute all throughout Obann–and across the mountains, too, if possible. General Born refuses to send any more military aid to Durmurot, and he may be acting wisely. We shall see.
But what’s going on in Lintum Forest might be an even bigger danger. Wish I knew exactly what it was! But that’ll come, too.
Meanwhile, Chalcedon’s crack editorial staff has begun work on Book No. 14, Behold!, and No. 13, The Wind from Heaven, is being printed and will go on sale any day now.
How many books will there be in the series?
As many as God gives me. That’s all I know about it.
Ah! I’ve finished that book review. And The Wind from Heaven, I’m told, is at the printer’s–so it’ll go on sale any day now.
Now I want to start a new book! Patty says, “There’s nothing that says you have to write a book a year.” But I want to write one. I love writing these books. Such a welcome break from the nooze! Besides which, I want to know what happens next.
But I need a title, and I need some kind of opening scene to link the new book to Behold! I am waiting for the Lord to give me these blessings.
No, I won’t mark time by writing “The” Calecktid Wizdumb of Joe Collidge… Don’t want to drive myself bonkers, do I?
Well, I just can’t handle any more nooze today. I’m going back to re-reading Behold!–because I want to start writing another book soon, and I need to find a hook to hitch it onto the last one. It’s back to Obann for me, as soon as I can swing it.
In addition to a plotline trailer hitch, I also need a title. Years ago, when I was writing horror novels–and I got four of them published–I could never come up with a decent title. The publisher always had to change whatever title I submitted, and I have to admit that their titles were better than mine. Anybody’s titles were better than mine.
I thought, back then, that a title could just be tacked on after I’d finished writing the book. How wrong I was. A good title helps the writer steer the plot. It’s sort of what the book’s supposed to be about. You wouldn’t believe how easy it is to go off on tangents, once you lose sight of your theme.
But live and learn. I want a title and I want a hook, and I know I have to wait until the Lord provides guidance.
Because He’s a much better writer than I am.