Two Signings and a Deadline
The Facefaker’s Game has been out in the world for 50 days!
That’s a weird sentence to look at, because it feels simultaneously like too much time and not enough. Too much time because it’s been an incredibly busy month-and-a-half — and not enough because it’s been so long since I actually worked on that book. I submitted my last draft November 2015; I submitted final changes in April; I held the advance reader copy in my hands in May. So, to me, it feels like Game has existed for ages.
It’s just weird, I guess. I knew, in a very shallow sense, that books have a weird relationship with time. Experiencing that firsthand is disorienting.
Anyway. It has been busy around here. At the start of November, I answered a bunch of questions on Reddit’s fantasy forum, which was immensely fun. Talking about myself and my work, at length and uninterrupted, is the kind of thing that I can do forever without thinking about other, smaller concerns, like hunger and sleep. That I got to do it in the same virtual space as some of my heroes was gravy. (If you have questions that you didn’t get to ask, my Goodreads Ask the Author is open 24 hours a day.)
Mid-month, I trekked up to Denver to talk and sign books at the Tattered Cover.
This requires some context for those of you who didn’t grow up in Denver. There are a few Tattered Cover locations around the city, and their insides look like this:
“Endless walls of books” is the governing aesthetic. And I grew up bookish and indoorsy in the Denver area. Tattered Cover is my Mecca. So when I found out I was signing books there, my face looked like this:
And that face pretty much stayed on until a few hours after the event was over.
I took a couple pictures, and before you ask, yes, I did miss my true calling as a professional photographer, thank you so much for noticing.
The event itself was enormous fun. Prior to sitting at a table and scrawling my illegible signature all over people’s books, the store gave me a podium and 30–40 minutes to just talk at people, which was delightful. I have heard that some people would prefer to die than speak in public; I am not one of those people.
Last week, I did another signing at a local Barnes & Noble. The format here was slightly different, in that instead of public speaking and a podium, I had a table and instructions to be aggressively charming to anyone who walked in the door. This also turned out to be a blast, if in a slightly different way. The first half hour of greeting newcomers and trying to pitch them my book was, of course, horribly awkward and uncomfortable for all involved, but after a while the instincts I picked up in food service came back, and things settled into a more comfortable rhythm.
(I just realized while writing this that The Facefaker’s Game is shelved in the same area as The Traitor Baru Cormorant. The only correct reaction to learning that is holy frick holy frick holy frick. I love that book.)
The last item busying things up is a deadline. The pitch for my next book (the sequel to Facefaker’s Game) is due January 1, 2017; I’ll have to submit a sample of 50 or so pages, plus a book summary.
This project is going reasonably well, with the plot development at 85% done and the sample at about 20%. The plotting is the more difficult of the two by a long, long way; there’s so much that I want to include in this book and it’s difficult to plan exactly how they’ll all work together. Conversely, what’s left of the 50-page sample will take about two days to complete if I have nothing else to do.
That sequel does have a working title, but not a good one; that’ll stay under the hat for a little while. I can share a few things, though…
- Blimey gets a plot line. From the early reviews of Facefaker’s Game, Blimey seems to be the best-loved character in the book, which is not surprising; he’s a very lovable guy. His poorly timed vanishing is leading to some big things in his future — not all of them pleasant.
- Witches! In The Facefaker’s Game, I focused primarily on Artificer magic, hoping to avoid information overload (though I don’t think I entirely succeeded). Witches existed in the background, with a handful of confirmed powers and a great many rumored ones. They, and their abilities, will be getting quite a bit more attention in Book 2.
- Aderyn Lucicar, Sam Latch, and the Golem. You don’t know these folks yet. They existed (or, rather, previous versions of them existed) in that first enormous manuscript I submitted to the publisher, and had to be cut so Game could focus on other things. I can’t tell you much about them yet…except to say it’s not even a little bit coincidental that Teranis looks like 1888 in the United Kingdom.
- More fog. Obviously.
- All the Rehl Company you can carry. Book 2 picks up about a year after Game. No longer an outsider, Ashes is comfortable and familiar with Jack’s band of Artificer-thieves. They feel like a family…and I’m sure nothing could possibly threaten or disrupt that…
More teasers in upcoming weeks! Expect something pretty cool to show up here on New Year’s Day, too. And by cool, I mean simultaneously “interesting” and “entertaining” and also “unsettling for reasons that cannot be articulated.” Get hype.
Originally published at chandlerjbirch.com on December 20, 2016.