MATT: We realized after writing Volume 2 that Volume 1 needed desperately to be not only revised but rewritten. It’s not easy to begin an epic story (7 volumes are planned) such as this, and as you move along you realize a lot of changes that need to be made retroactively. Also, Volume 1 was the beginning of our collaboration, and so the writing is not up to par with Volume 2, written after we’d had more practice. However, we’ve just posted the first few chapters of Volume 1 to Book Country, recently revised.
GREGG: We’ve just about finished rewriting Volume 1, though, and are beginning the editing stages. It took us a while to get where we are with it because rewriting is just not as fun as writing, even if it is essential! But at the same time, we’re brainstorming and fleshing out the plot and characters of volume 3, which is a lot more exciting for us. Continue reading →
We are really excited to introduce Ace and Roc editor Danielle Stockley. Danielle has been a trusted counselor to us over the years and is our go-to science fiction and fantasy fiction expert. (She also edits Book Country member Kerry Schafer‘s the Books of the Between!) It is our pleasure to have her answer questions about her work at Penguin Random House on Book Country today. Read on for great tips about the craft of writing—and editing—in those genres.
NG: What are some of the clichés in science fiction and fantasy submissions that make a manuscript an automatic “pass” for you?
DS: I hate to declare anything an automatic pass, because inevitably it will show up in something that I’ve published. There are definitely things that make me wary, though. Plots involving mind control; protagonists who are constantly developing new powers just when they are needed most; character “development” by way of sexual assault; and evil, monolithic corporations with seemingly limitless resources don’t feel especially fresh to me.
I feel a responsibility to tell the truth as I experience it. –Shannon LC Cate.
Shannon LC Cate
We’re happy to welcome Book Country writer Shannon LC Cate to the blog. Shannon’s debut novel, Jack, is forthcoming from Musa Publishing in September 2013. She’s also been writing about family, parenting, politics and religion since 2000. We sat down to talk about Book Country, the writing process, and getting published.
Nevena: Congratulations on selling Jack to Musa Publishing! Can you take me through the publishing deal?
Shannon: I had submitted Jack to a handful of literary agents. (I workshopped my query here at Book Country.) Three requested the manuscript in full and one of those wanted a revise and resubmit. I did the revision but still got a final “no thanks.”
“If I go several days without creating something, I feel incomplete.” –Angela Martello
Angela Martello is a science fiction writer from Philadelphia who’s been working in the science and medical publishing sphere for more than twenty years. The name of her dog, Ben, is also the name of the protagonist from her Kaliphian Matter trilogy, the first and second of which you can read and review on Book Country. I’ve come to know Angela as a voice of reason, and I’m really excited to welcome her to the spotlight.
Nevena: Thanks for joining me, Angela. When did you start writing?
Angela: I wrote a children’s book, complete with illustrations, when I was in high school for my sophomore year English class (even tried to get it published). That’s the earliest project I can remember, but I think I was writing as far back as grade school.