So I’ve been tagged in the Next Big Thing blog hop that’s been going around, by the marvelous Catherine Lundoff – who you should really be paying attention to. I just finished her novel Silver Moon and enjoyed it hugely (menopausal werewolves; you can’t imagine what a breath of fresh air that is).
So here’s me.
What is the working title of your next book?
There are two, one in a vastly different stage of completion than the other. The title of the book I just finished the first editing pass on is A Murder of Crows and I don’t see that one changing. The other is Fall and Rising for now, though that’s likely to change once I and my co-author sit down and hammer things out. It’s a sequel to Line and Orbit.
Where did the idea come from for the book?
A Murder of Crows came from, if you can believe it, the title itself. One day I was just like “I’d really like to write a book with that title. What would it be about?” and it grew from there. I knew right off that I wanted it to be dark fantasy, and I’ve always been interested in the idea of certain birds as having a close connection to death, so it was a very short jump from what the title evoked in me to those themes and concepts.
Fall and Rising came from a desire to continue the story that began in Line and Orbit, and will pick up shortly after the first book left off, though focusing around secondary characters from the first book (though Adam and Lochlan will make an appearance). I and my co-author explicitly left things open for sequels while wrapping the main storyline, but besides that we just love our characters enough that we wanted to continue to do stuff with them. It’s a rich universe that we built and there’s a lot to be done with it.
What genre does your book fall under?
A Murder of Crows is, as I said, dark fantasy. Fall and Rising is space opera/science fantasy, continuing in the vein of Line and Orbit.
What is the synopsis or blurb for this book?
A Murder of Crows: Turn, a Psychopomp in training and an orphaned member of the Crow tribe, seems to have her future all set for her: she’ll finish her final term of training, receive her charge, and spend her days guiding mortal souls into the lands beyond death and living a quiet life with her lover Sene. But when she’s sent early into Sol, the Land of Dreadful Day and the home of the souls she’s meant to guide, a chance sighting of something very suspicious causes things to unravel. Disgraced and banished to the Shadowlands, the abode of the mysterious Ravens, Turn struggles to piece the remains of her life back together. But her betrayal haunts her, along with dark dreams of buried history, and a coming catastrophe that only she might be able to prevent.
Fall and Rising: Six months after the devastating Battle of the Plain, Kyle Waverly and Eva Reyes are in desperate circumstances. The Bideshi and the Protectorate remain in violent opposition to each other. The genetic disease that the Protectorate has so desperately hidden now threatens to overrun them, despite the Protectorate’s best efforts to contain it, and human society itself is teetering on the brink of total collapse. There are frightened rumors of quarantine, mass deaths – and whispers of an underground resistance gaining strength on Terra itself. In the midst of all of this, Kyle and Eva are struggling to do what they can to prevent the outbreak of full-scale war, to find and aid the mysterious resistance, and to hold onto each other. But when Eva begans to sicken and the two find themselves thrown into a dangerous uprising on a distant planet, things become more desperate still. And behind the scenes of the increasingly repressive Protectorate government a new power is rising, one that seems determined to set the powder keg alight…
What actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
I’m so bad at this.
A Murder of Crows: Not sure about most of this, but I will say that I had Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander somewhat in mind when I imagined what Turn might look like.
Fall and Rising: When I cast Line and Orbit, I had Chiwetel Ejiofor in mind for Kyle and Mabel Pantaleon in mind for Eva.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
I’m hoping that A Murder of Crows might snag me an agent; I’ll definitely be shopping it around. Samhain Publishing is releasing Line and Orbit, so they’ll get first crack at Fall and Rising and hopefully they’ll want it.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
A Murder of Crows took slightly less than a month, mostly because I plotted it extensively beforehand. Fall and Rising… I dunno. It’s roughly plotted, it should be plotted in much greater detail in a week or so, and after that it hopefully won’t take more than a few months at most.
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
See above, pretty much.
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
I think I’m doing something interesting in A Murder of Crows with gender and a female protagonist that will catch people’s attention. One of my major secondary characters is genderqueer, which was interesting to write. I think I’m taking a lot of other tropes and bending them slightly; I was trying to take them somewhere new and hopefully I succeeded.
With Fall and Rising I’m clearly hoping that people will have liked Line and Orbit enough that they’ll want more as much as I do. Like I said, I think the worldbuilding in that book is very rich, and I hope people will respond really positively to the characters. If nothing else, as I said, we left things sort of open-ended, and I don’t think the story feels over yet, if that makes sense.
So that’s it. Thanks very much for reading! And now I will tag the wonderful: