Hey all! I realize it’s been very quiet around here of late—most recently that’s been because of a string of migraines, worse luck—but I wanted to pop in with a few updates.
The first update would be the absolute joy it was to go chat with O’Dell Hutchison on the ‘Be Gay With Me’ Podcast (my episode is here, and you can explore the whole backlist of episodes here). We talked queerness (obviously) but also writing YA when one is onesself somewhat removed from their YA years, what it was like growing up, first kisses, coming out versus being outed, what it’s like to be a “curb queer”, books and whether or not Canada really is better for LGBTQIA+ folks than the U.S. (Spoiler: not as much as you think, if at all.) I had a blast, and I hope you’ll spend some time digging into O’Dell’s previous guests (I fell into a rabbit hole of listening to the podcasts and have really been enjoying them.)
On the writing front, I hit the indescribably enjoyable coincidence of handing in two completed drafts within the space of a couple of weeks of each other (the less enjoyable approaching double-deadline was another reason for the general silence around here). Both “Felix Navidad” (my queer holiday proximity romance novella that rounds out the last of the quartet I began with “Handmade Holidays“) and my as-yet-untitled Hi/Lo YA novel about Ben, who has just spent a week completely cut off from all his friends because a jerk smashed his phone, only to find himself forced to sit beside said jerk on the long train-ride home are now in the hands of the wonderful editors and/or publishers and happily on their way to becoming actual things.
Hands up if you’re not surprised I couldn’t come up with a title for Ben’s story yet. It’s fine to mock me. Really. Ben’s Story (which will eventually have a title) is coming from Lorimer Press’s Real Love line, and I can’t wait to have it out there in the world—most especially because it’s a queer High/Low, and I am so damn happy I get to add to the volume of specifically queer books out there for reluctant or otherwise struggling readers.
To that point, you can once again place a pre-order for “Felix Navidad” at the Bold Strokes Books webstore—it’ll drop December 1st from the BSB webstore, a little later in the month from everywhere else, and can we once again bask in the brilliance that is Inkspiral Design‘s amazing cover thereof? Bask. Go ahead. I’ll wait.
Faux Ho Ho Audiobook!
This is only the second audiobook I’ve listened to by Giancarlo Herrera and like this first one, it was brilliant. Just the right amount of enthusiasm without being over the top. The voices and accents were perfect. I really felt Silas’s longing for something more in this story. It was wonderful to see his evolution from the invisible black sheep of his family to someone who was confident in himself and his desires and his love for Dino.Sadonna, Love Bytes
This is of zero surprise to me because the moment I heard Giancarlo Herrera do his thing with “Handmade Holidays,” I knew I’d found someone amazing, and I’m lucky enough to get to be one of the first people to release an audiobook with him. Were I selfish sort, I’d be trying to keep him to myself, but honestly, I want to see this man skyrocket to the top of audiobook performers, so if you’re one of my author friends and you’re looking for a supremely freaking talented audio performer? I gesture to Giancarlo with both hands. Doing jazz hands, even. Jazz hands!
If you have picked up and listened to any of my audiobooks of late, I would love for you to drop a review specifically praising said performer if you’ve got the spoons for it. I can sing to the heavens about how amazing he is—and I do, but my singing is not great—but the more voices in the chorus, the better chance I’ve got at helping the man become so successful I won’t be able to book him myself anymore.
So What’s Next?
Good question! The edits for Felix are done, but the edits for Ben’s story are inbound, and I’ve sent a pitch off for a novel—that’s right, you heard me, a novel—as my next possible move. My tendons are as recovered as they’re going to get, and I’ve learned how to pace myself now, so I believe I can create a novel-length piece of fiction again.
Once I hear back from the publisher about whether or not they’d like to pick that novel up, you’ll be the first to know.
Beyond the novel, I also plan to stick to my “Wednesdays are for something else!” habit of writing something different (and without a deadline) on Wednesdays, and I’m still futzing and poking and picking at my giant stack of ideas to see which one wants to pop up first. Especially when I write a novel, I need that weekly digression with something that will potentially be shorter and complete on a much quicker scale than, y’know, a whole novel. I’ve got more ideas than time, of course, but fingers crossed.
December 2022 will be “Felix Navidad,” next year will see Ben’s story (which will totally have a title by then, honest), and maybe even a novel as well. Everything else? Gravy.
I hope you’re all as well as one can be during a pandemic!