Writing & Life Update: July 2020

I hope you all are doing okay! Today I’m sharing another update. If you’re looking for updates on my writing, check out my last blog post for updates on my next spin-off series (including progress on Finn & Arianna’s Brazenbourg duet, though I’ll also talk a little bit about it here too). Today, I’ll share some of my plans for the rest of this year and talk a little about 2021.

THE REST OF 2020

Trying to plan during the chaos of 2020 is certainly tough. So many plans have already changed (including publishing-wise) and so many plans are still up in the air. Based on where things are now, I think I MAY be able to publish the Brazenbourg duet (both books!) this year. I’m still debating it a little bit because it’s looking like a November/December release, and that’s always a tough time to release books generally because the holidays (for those who celebrate) take attention. It’s even tougher during election years (at least here in the US) and, of course, there’s the pandemic, so I’m still going to play it by ear and see how things go. I checked my journal recently and realized I started writing the Brazenbourg duet in May of 2019 (yes, over a year ago!) and I can’t wait to share it with you, but I really want to make sure Finn and Arianna get the attention they deserve. More info to come soon!

WHAT ABOUT 2021?

Looking ahead to 2021 (yes, I’m already planning – or trying to plan – for next year), there will be the release of the first 2-3 books in the Vollywood series, though likely not until later in the year. I’m still toying with writing/releasing another Royals book, but I haven’t decided yet. My muse is silent right now or, really, she’s devoting all her energy to the Brazenbourg books, so once I get through that I’ll have a better idea where my creativity is flowing. More details later this year.

WHAT ABOUT PRINT & AUDIO?

In regards to print, things are progressing! I’m currently in the middle of cleaning up all the files (proofing, fixing inconsistencies, etc.) in prep for the print versions and audio production. As I’ve been re-reading the books, I’ve stumbled across so many little moments I’d forgotten. Would it surprise you to learn that authors forget A LOT about their books and characters? As a reader, I remember minute details, but as an author I remember so little. I’ve actually been creating a massive ‘series mapping’ document (sometimes called a series bible) that I’ll use to keep track of everything. I’ll also be updating the ebook versions, too, and those will roll out later this year (hopefully). The next big challenge is getting the covers done. I’ll be redoing ALL the existing covers so this is a big project since I’ll also be making print and audio covers at the same time for 14 books (11 Royals books, plus the 3 ebook versions of the boxed sets) at least to start.

Speaking of audio, I’m now onto the stressful part of choosing a narrator! This is stressful mostly because I’m trying to decide on the accents I want in the books. I’ve tried a narrator with a French accent for the Royals and that didn’t quite sound right. Should I try Italian next? Or just go with a British accent for our Royals? While Valleria is set between France and Italy, I’m still struggling with this. Audiobooks are very expensive to produce, and I’d like the same narrator for all the books, so I’m taking extra time to get it right at the start.

What do you think? If you listen to audiobooks, what accent would you like to hear in the Royals audiobooks? Italian? French? British? Something else? Leave a comment and let me know!

I hope you all are safe and well. I’ll be back with another update soon.

4 thoughts on “Writing & Life Update: July 2020”

  1. I love your books and can’t wait to find out more in the further series! I understand the location of Valleria, but honestly in my mind I imagined the hot British accent!

  2. Shalom,
    First. Thank you, thank you, thank you for looking into putting your stories on audio.

    Just a thought but while interviewing narrators, ask their opinion on the accent, they may come up with one that is slightly different from the norm.

    I listen to a lot of audio stories. Some of the narrators stand out are you interested in knowing some or looking into other avenues? It is unfortunate ghe a narrator can enhance a story so much or ruin the entire experience. It is good to be sure.

    1. Thanks for the comment! With the service I use to find a narrator, you don’t get a chance to interview them, but you can hear them record a sample of your book. The French accent didn’t sound quite right, which is why I wanted to poll readers to see what they’d prefer. I’m sure I’ll find the right one though!

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