Consider this my official announcement: I’m working on a new story in the Kestral universe.
I’ve been resisting the urge to start a new book for months now, as I knew I didn’t have a reliable way to promote it; but my renewed plans for a fresh marketing push are giving me the excuse I needed to resume writing long-form fiction. And this new Kestral book will take place between the timeline of the first and second novels, featuring the first meetings between Carolyn Kestral and Coray Gheris, Captain of the freighter Jovian Skies.
So, picture Jon Lovitz, using that nasal huckster’s voice of his, as he explains the latest storyline to the lead characters in The Three Amigos: “You meet Cochise. At first, you fight. But by the end of the picture, you’re friends.”
Although the story of Carolyn and Coray isn’t nearly that simple, this bit keeps playing in my head, because (thanks to The Lens) we all know this is what’s going to happen between them. And for some of you, that might be enough. But for many of you, that’s why this book needs to be so much more than another Geronimo picture. After all, there must have been something serious going on to cause these two people, who initially didn’t like each other, to become lovers in the end.
Well, you can all relax. Though a love story may be central to this book, this will still be a rousing Kestral adventure, featuring the rest of the crew of the Mary, as well as the crew of the Jovian Skies, and more of the fun details and idocyncracies of living in Kestral’s world that you’ve come to love.
And on that note, I have something else to announce: Concurrent with this new book will be a revision and re-release of the other three Kestral books. The revisions will include new covers on the exteriors, a new title for the first Kestral book, and some renaming of various elements in the very-popular Kestral universe to make the entire series sound better. No, no characters are getting new names… and it’s still set in that part-Star Trek, part-Firefly, more-realistic-than-both universe I crafted years ago… but as long as I’m revising, I have to admit that there are some words that I was okay with initially, but I downright dislike now. (“Galarchy,” I’m looking straight at you.)
I’ve therefore pulled the existing Kestral books from circulation, with the intent of doing the revisions and releasing everything in a relatively short period as a fresh package. The new book will officially be the second of the series, re-numbering The Lens and The House of Jacquarelle to be the third and fourth books, respectively.
The working title of the new book is, appropriately, Jovian Skies.
I don’t yet know how different the revised books are going to look from the original books, but I’ll make sure the front matter makes clear which book is which, and what they were originally titled. Not that I’d mind everyone buying the books anew, but I don’t want anyone buying a book thinking it’s brand new, if it’s not.
All of this will play a part in my new marketing push, which will include a new series of newsletters, other revised or recovered novels, and enticing special content designed to draw crowds and whet everyone’s appetite. I have no idea how well this will all work out, but hey: At least you’re going to get a new book out of it.
Expect further details on the Kestral novels, and the rest of the marketing push, over the next few months.