A couple quick updates!
The first draft of the sequel to Sufficiently Advanced Magic is completed.
This draft is 214,500 words, which is just a smidgen shorter than the final version of SAM (which is 218,000). This could get longer or shorter based on beta reader feedback, but I suspect it’ll stay somewhere in the same range.
I’d expected this to be a much shorter book, which is part of why it took a bit longer than I expected. For the future, I’m just going to plan around all my sequels being this same length.
The current working title is Wish Upon a Scar, but I’m still debating if I’ll go with that as the final title or not.
I’m currently doing a little bit of self-editing. After that’s done, I plan to send out copies to beta readers on Sunday. I’ll be giving my beta readers a few weeks to read it and send me notes, then it’ll be off to my professional editor.
I’m still aiming for a release in paperback and Kindle formats in March or April. At this point, I’m guessing it’ll be late March, but it really depends on how many notes I get from beta readers and the editor.
For those of you who are curious about my writing pace and process:
The writing on this took me roughly 10 months (from approximately March of last year to now). I did some other writing during that time frame as well – about 20,000 words on Defying Destiny, and a little less than that on a Keras spin-off (tentatively titled Six Sacred Swords) and a LitRPG.
I also wrote a short story for the Art of War anthology, which is out next month. I strongly recommend checking it out – it has some other great writers involved, and the proceeds go to Doctors Without Borders.
All in all, I probably wrote about 280,000 words between March and now, which puts me at just under 1,000 words a day (assuming writing seven days a week). That’s not a terribly fast pace if you look at it in terms of daily word count, but the actual writing output is good enough that it would translate to about three “standard” length novels.
I also have a tendency to accelerate toward the end of a project. Of those roughly 280,000 words, I wrote about 70,000 of them during December. This was partially because I was close to finishing the book, and partially because I shut myself off from all my outside distractions.
I also wrote quite a bit for non-novel projects, which slowed my pace a bit in ways that are harder to quantify.
For example, I’ve written about 30,000 words for a rules set for a War of Broken Mirrors tabletop game, and a greater amount for an Arcane Ascension LARP rules set. The LARP is harder to quantify, because a lot of it is updating rules and lore documents that I’d already written, but I’d ballpark the range at somewhere around 100,000 words of work on it.
So, that’s basically another novel worth of work. Maybe more, if I’m being honest. I consider that time worthwhile, though, and not only because it’s fun. Working on the tabletop and LARP rules helps me flesh out my settings and systems further.
For example, working on the games gave me the chance to flesh out all the foreign attunements, make the runes for each of the levels of each attunement in advance, and write up a formal timeline of events for everything that happens in between the War of Broken Mirrors and Arcane Ascension books.
That’s just a small fraction of it – it’s basically another novel or two that’s entirely world and system building. And I make use of that in the books. Not every game mechanic translates into novel format, of course, but things like schools of magic, major historical events, factions and organizations, and that sort of thing absolutely do.
Stabby Award Update:
I won the Stabby Award for Best Self-Published Author. It still feels surreal.
This is my first writing award, and it means a great deal to me.
There were numerous times when I was collecting rejection letters from agents and publishers with my earlier books that I considered quitting. I pushed through that sadness and self-doubt, but it wasn’t easy.
Sufficiently Advanced Magic is the eighth book that I’ve written. The first five were never published. It’s taken a lot of work to get to this point.
But it’s been worth it.
Thank you to everyone who has supported me, either through voting, just reading my books, or giving me words of support over the years. I’m extremely grateful.
I’m hoping to make the next book even better.