Charred Roots is done, and boy am I happy about that. This book has taken for-ev-er. +2. Erik and I are diving in to get book 7 out as soon as possible, though probably not this year.
In the sixth installment of this sprawling, epic story, Chavali has to grapple with the most unpleasant annoyance of all: Colby’s feelings.
I jest. Sort of. Not really.
This book takes us to a tropical city nestled high in the mountains. It’s fantasy. We can do that. *sprinkles magic all over the entire city*
The location was inspired by a trip I took to Belize and Mexico a few years ago. Much like that region, it’s hot and humid, and festooned with flowers and foliage. And sandals. Lots of sandals.
Fun fact! I had to train autocorrect to fix “sandlas” for this book because that’s how my fingers insist upon typing it.
If you have no idea what I’m talking about, go check out book 1, The Fallen! It’s only 99 cents (USD) on all platforms. Meet Chavali, a woman who lies, steals, cheats, and disdains with the best of them. She’s a fortune teller, a seer, and a pain in the ass.
Now that’s out of the way…
Why, Lee, did this book take so long? It’s been two years since book 5!
There are many reasons.
Storytelling is hard work. It really is. This stuff takes years of learning how to word. We have to understand at least basic human psychology. Research is essential even for the wildest, most fantastical stories. There are conventions (some call them “rules”) to writing, and you can’t break them effectively until you understand them.
Stories aren’t just piles of words arranged in a way so you can understand them. Anyone who’s read an objectively bad story or a textbook knows that.
Creativity is an important part of storytelling. You know what stops creativity? Stress. Depression. Anxiety. You know, all the fun stuff that makes most people gain weight, lose sleep, and grumble about everything.
Obviously, if you’ve been around with me for a while, you know I’ve had my share of issues and yet still keep putting out books. Since the release of A Curse of Memories (book 5 of The Greatest Sin), I’ve churned out…crap, don’t make me go back and count. Let’s just call it “a lot” and leave it at that.
I’ve put a great deal of energy into other projects.
If you’ve seen me at a show over the past year or so and asked about TGS6, you know how frustrating this book has been.
Now, I will not accept the full raft of blame for the delay, of course. You know how some people are more sensitive to stress, depression, and anxiety than others?
Erik had a fair amount of health problems over the past year or so, which didn’t help anything.
DO NOT PANIC. HE IS NOT DYING. EVERYTHING IS FINE. WE WILL FINISH THE SERIES EVEN IF I HAVE TO GET OUTLINES FROM HIS GHOST.
His outline segments sometimes came when I couldn’t hack this book. My good times for this book sometimes fell when he couldn’t hack it.
We didn’t mesh well, basically. But now we’re over the book 6 hurdle. Each of us learned many valuable things about process. As soon as I’m able to fit it into my (somewhat ridiculous) schedule, we’re going to get you two books in one year to make up the lost time. It won’t be this year, and probably won’t be next year, but it’ll happen.
Thanks for reading. Next week, I’ll have another new release to talk about. One that’s been planned for months instead of one that happened by surprise.
Surprise! Charred Roots is now available. 🙂