January 5

Next update January 25

Happy New Year! I’m off to a great start in 2013 – already a day late with my first update.

In my defense, I’m still fighting a wicked cold I brought home from Canada. Honestly, I don’t do well when I’m sick – I get grumpy and depressed and I sit around and watch bad TV instead of doing the things I should be doing like working out and writing.

So my plan for this weekend is to take it easy, watch some NFL games and hopefully by Monday I’ll finally be feeling well enough to start making a dent in 2013.

This year should be an interesting – and hopefully fun – one for me. 2012 was a good year. I did leave BioWare, stepping away from the best job I’ve ever had, but it was so I could move onto what I hope will be bigger and better things. I was lucky enough to find an agent and an editor who believed in me enough to give me a contract for Children of Fire, my original fantasy trilogy, and I finished the manuscript for the first book in the series. Now in 2013 I need to step it up another notch.

Like most of you, I have made some New Year’s resolutions. Like always, I’m vowing to get in better shape by working out more regularly and I’m planning on bringing my golf handicap down a few strokes. Those are the standard resolutions for the past decade, and progress has been minimal. This year, however, I have a couple other resolutions that are much more important.

First, I have to finish book two of my trilogy. I don’t want to be one of those authors who makes readers wait years between books; I want to buckle down and get the story written. The first book was easy to deliver on time; I’d been working on it off and on for several years, so most of it was done even before I signed my publishing contract. The second book, not so much. It still exists mostly as a rough outline, so I need to get off my ass and start working on it. The worst thing I could do would be to procrastinate and force myself to rush to meet a deadline.

Children of Fire, the first book in the trilogy, is probably the best thing I’ve ever written by a long shot. I’ve poured more of my heart and soul into this novel than anything I’ve worked on before. I’m not a mercenary gun for hire on this one – I *own* this story in a way I didn’t own my Star Wars or Mass Effect novels. I need to make sure the second book (The Scorched Earth) measures up. It’s a lot of pressure, but I think it’s a good kind of pressure.

My second resolution is also tied in with Children of Fire. When we release the first book, probably later this year, I obviously want it to do well. I know there are a lot of fans out there who enjoy my Star Wars and Mass Effect novels. But will I be able to draw them in to something else? I know if people read it, they’ll like it. But there are a lot of products out there competing for your entertainment dollar. You only have a limited amount of time. Sometimes it’s hard to bring people into something new. So I need to promote the hell out of Children of Fire to make sure as many people as possible know about it.

To accomplish this, I’m resolving to go to as many conventions and expos as possible this year to get the word out. Seems like spring and summer are the busiest times, so I anticipate doing a lot of traveling, a lot of talks and a lot of signing events. I’ll try to make sure these are posted here on the website well in advance, and I’ll also be mentioning them on my Twitter feed.

Speaking of my Twitter feed, that’s also where I tend to mention any interviews or stories about me that get posted on the web. I used to try and mention all those here in my blog, but I’m doing more and more of these, so it’s hard to keep track of what I’ve mentioned and when. I’ll still try to bring it up when I remember, but Twitter makes it so much easier because I can just post it right away. Twitter’s also a good way to keep in touch with the fans, though for some questions you need a longer answer, and in those cases I still think e-mailing me is a better way to go.

Okay, I guess that’s it. Sort of a rambling update, but as I mentioned before, I am sick, so cut me some slack.

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