The year of the sequel

To date, 2015 appears to be the year of the sequel for me. This is a good thing. I’ve never been able to write sequels, or series. And yet, every bit of marketing advice out there says you must. I’m not sure I agree with that — I think it’s more important to write things that you love.

However, last fall, I asked the brilliant Kristine Kathryn Rusch about this. The advice she gave me was priceless: If I want to engage my butterfly brain, each book must be unique. You can’t just write the same story over and over again, or even really continue the story from one book to the next.

Since I started following that advice, I’ve been able to write more series characters. Each book is unique. I actually enjoy the challenge of that, while keeping the characters and their voices true.

So what exactly does that mean? Let me explain.

Warning – lots of pictures under the cut.

Free Fiction Monday — The Tiger’s Shadow

The Tiger's ShadowOn July 9th, my new novel, The Guardian Hound, is being published by Book View Cafe.

It’s coming soon!

In the five weeks leading up to the novel release, I am publishing a short story a week, and having each available for free for that week. All the stories are about the world or somehow involved with The Guardian Hound and the various clans.

Chronologically, I wrote this story, A Tiger’s Shadow, before I wrote the story for last week, A Prophesy in Shadows. But once I finished this story, I knew I had to write what came before it.

I know I said that A Prophesy in Shadows was the second story I wrote, when I was only writing short stories and not tackling the novel yet. But I was wrong. It was the third story. This story, A Tiger’s Shadow, was actually the second story I wrote for the novel. It’s included as part of The Guardian Hound.

This story takes place during what is now called The Week of Long Knives, in Calcutta, in 1947.