Friday, December 28, 2012
The year is winding to a close, and I see many authors posting their yearly retrospections. Who am I to resist peer pressure? So I'd like to talk a little about writing books in 2012.
I've been writing since the 1990s, and 2012 has been a banner year. You bought over 100,000 copies of my books this year, bringing me to a lifetime total of 150,000 sales. I'm still amazed -- and probably somewhat smug -- that you bought so many of these silly dragon books.
2012 began with some questions. At Christmas of 2011, I released my novel Light of Requiem, and third volume of my Song of Dragons trilogy. After a few years of writing obscure standalone novels, Song of Dragons became rather successful, selling over 100,000 copies. When 2012 began, I found myself wondering: What next?
Briefly, I debated whether I should write a fourth Song of Dragons novel, stretching the trilogy out into a longer series. I decided against it; I generally dislike series that ramble on for too long. I felt that wouldn't be fair to my readers.
And so, I decided to write Dragonlore -- a new fantasy trilogy set in Requiem, the same world as Song of Dragons. To keep things fresh, I fast-forwarded three hundred years and created a new cast of heroes and villains.
On hindsight, this was the right choice. So far, the first two Dragonlore novels -- A Dawn of Dragonfire and A Day of Dragon Blood -- are doing well. While the earlier trilogy had a strong action-adventure feel, this time around, the books are darker -- less A New Hope and more The Empire Strikes Back. This allows me to keep expanding Requiem and also, I hope, evolve as an author.
One fun moment in 2012 came when A Dawn of Dragonfire (the first Dragonlore novel) reached Amazon's Top 100 bestsellers list. This made it the #1 bestselling epic fantasy on Amazon, just ahead of George R. R. Martin's latest novel. Now, this ranking only lasted for a day (and George is again running way ahead), but what a day it was!
But my favorite thing about 2012 was meeting great new people. I loved hearing from all the readers who emailed me, liked my Facebook page, or followed me on Twitter. I try to reply to everyone who contacts me. If you messaged me in 2012, and I failed to answer, please try again. Your message might have gotten lost in my inbox, but I definitely want to reply to everyone.
So what's next? What will happen in 2013?
First of all, I'm working on A Night of Dragon Wings, the third and final Dragonlore novel. This one will be the longest, darkest, most complex Requiem novel yet. I hope to release it in February or March of 2013. I can't wait to hear what you think about it.
After that, I'd like to continue expanding the world of Requiem. I hope to write a third trilogy set in this world. The way Dragonlore begins three hundred years after Song of Dragons, this third trilogy will also skip forward to a new generation. It will tell a story for both new readers and old fans. I hope that, in 2013, I can release the first of these new novels.
As a final thought, I'd like to thank everyone who helped spread the word -- whether by telling a friend, posting an Amazon review, or simply sharing a Facebook post. These books could not exist without your support.
Thank you, dear readers, for making 2012 a success. I hope you keep reading in 2013. I look forward to another year full of dragons.