Victoria completely finished her read-through and we smacked our heads together to finish all the editing rounds. We're now officially DONE
as if we weren't excited enough before, now we're insufferable. So, yesterday I worked on setting up everything with our B&N and Amazon accounts.
(Seriously, the Barnes and Noble Nook Press made it SO EASY. They had this Scrivener-like program where you can edit your file directly, so while we initially had problems with the uploaded version not making sense of the chapter headers, we fixed it all in their program. The KDP program is more like, "Hah, you don't have any chapter headers and your book has five-thousand pages lololol you're gonna have to start from the beginning and do it OUR WAY." So...I'll be figuring that bit out today.)
Anyway, soon we'll be posting the first chapter for everyone to preview. For now, a bit more about the series. Aw, yis.
This saga has had three iterations so far. Three full, complete iterations. Yep, I'm on my third version of writing this from beginning completely to the end.
The first version began back in my sophomore year of high school. That was about '03 or '04 -- ten years ago. Holy cow. I didn't even realize it was that old.
I remember the conception of the idea as clearly and poignantly as a punch in the teeth. Up until then, I'd been writing all my stories about a main girl who is super important and everyone must help her fulfill her destiny so that she can save the world. I mean, how many times could I write that?
Well, then I had the epiphany during my English class as I was staring out the window instead of paying attention to "The Tale of Two Cities", a book which I had read only the first page of (and somehow got through the class by only reading the first page of back in a time where CliffNotes was still definitely not on the internet), when I decided how to mix up my traditional formula utilizing inspiration from Amelia Atwater-Rhodes, and subsequently created one of my most favorite characters ever.
The saga started out as only a trilogy then, and since I wrote it during a bad time in my life, the story soaked up a great deal of everything I was going through. It was, however, the first trilogy that I had ever finished.
I did terrible things to those characters.
The second version began multiple times. I went through a period between junior year and several years after my graduation where finishing something on my own became a struggle. I wrote mostly for therapy, and that was fine. It got me through more bad times.
But in about '07, when I was 19, working an office receptionist and filing job, I began version two, and I was determined to strip the ugly from the story that high school had tainted it with, though particular life themes did end up in the story that I certainly didn't intend.
Seriously, each version reflects my life in some way. Such is fiction.
I ended up adding a fourth book to the trilogy to make it officially a saga, but I had many breaks, oftentimes months at a time, in the time it took me to finish it. Many breaks. Like, I finished two years later in '09. Nowadays, that's pretty weird for me. But, I finished, and I didn't expect it could do anything for my publishing career, so I left it alone.
The third version began when I decided, "I just want to write it and I don't care that I won't be able to publish it." Victoria was getting into rewriting her part of the series, which had twined with mine in the second iteration, and I couldn't resist the itch-inducing bite of the inspiration bug.
So, in 2012, I began rewriting Kali again, but with a twist to the world that Victoria and I built upon so it was a level different than typical urban fantasy fiction. We did a lot more than ever before to build on this world and the characters and stories -- and it was a beautiful thing.
But I still had my doubts about her. For any writer, it's a natural vice. Good days and bad days. I painted the above sketch of Kali on one of my bad days...y'know, when I was feeling "blue". Ahahahaha.
Writing the three books (plus a separate book in-between, as well as co-writing a few books with Victoria) took less than a year. I had almost decided to start querying a non-related project, which would have technically been Project Get Agent: Number Six. But Victoria and I talked and we decided publishing our series independently was something we really wanted to do instead of something we felt we had to do. This story does things to us that no other story has -- I seriously can't get excited about other things like I do for these characters. I draw my own fanart. I draw my own fanart.
Can you even draw your own fanart?
Because I do.
Ugly, horrible fanart that causes me gross sobbing.
So, in the end, this was the avenue we chose because it was the best choice for these characters that we love so much. I've already started painting the posters for the second book and I've already put together the composition for the second cover (and the third cover, eheheh). This route allows us to go at the speed we normally go, and thank the gods for that, because now you can be tortured like us sooner.