State of the Writer, 2016

As good a time as any to look back and look forward…

2015 was a bit of a transition year for me – I still want to write m/m, but I had two m/f stories published in 2015 as well, under my Cate Cameron pencover name.

Just a Summer Fling, from Berkley, was my first Big Five experience, and it was beyond fun to see my book in a real bookstore. The second book in that series, Hometown Hero, comes out in February.

It was also interesting to work with a new-to-me publisher with my Corrigan Falls series of YA Romances. Center Ice came out in the spring, and I’m hoping the second book in the series, Playing Defense, will be out in March, although Entangled seems to have a bit of a different approach to scheduling releases, so… I’m not really sure when it will be out.

Sacrati_500x750On the Kate Sherwood front, 2015 was a bit slower – Sacrati came from Riptide in the spring, and it was really interesting working with yet another new-to-me publisher on this project. As long as I trust my editor, I’m a writer who loves a good, intense edit, and I definitely got that from Carol-anne Galloway at Riptide. She made the book better, and I’m grateful for all her hard work. And I was really impressed with the marketing Riptide did for the book as well. Fantasy doesn’t sell as well as contemporaries, as I know from previous experience (why oh why do I insist on writing what’s fun instead of what sells?) so even though Sacrati hasn’t blown the doors off, sales-wise, I’ve been pleased with what it managed.

And then, of course, Feral, another venture into the lanFeral-for-Kobo-1800-x-2700[1]d of self-publishing. I know why I wanted to self-publish this series – I wanted the flexibility of being able to write novels, novellas, shorts, or whatever I felt like, without having to worry about how the publisher would market them. And that’s great, except it leaves me to promote them, and I don’t really do promo. So, sales of Feral have been pretty flat. Which isn’t exactly a surprise, but is a bit disappointing. Still, it’s the first book in a series, so there’s plenty of time for it to find its readers and take up. I’m working on the second book right now and I’m really enjoying it (lots of juicy dialogue for me to play with!), so… we’ll see where all that goes!

And then looking ahead to 2016?

I try to put out four books a year, and on the plus side, with one from Berkley and hopefully two (depending on their weird scheduling) from Entangled, I’m already 75% done for the year!

Which means I’ll probably be going a bit over-budget, book wise, because I really want to get the Shelter series done by the fall (Feral, Lap Dog, plus probably at least two more novels and some novellas and shorts).

And I really, really want to finish up the stupid series I’ve got 3/4 done (first drafts) with Jericho and his buddies up in Montana. It’s another low-on-sex-until-the-end series, so I have no idea if it’s going to find an audience, but I think it’s probably the writing I’m most proud of in terms of characterization and building a really good ensemble cast. Last I checked, Riptide was interested in publishing it, but that was so long ago (I’m really dragging my feet on this one, trying to make sure it’s as good as it can be) that I have no idea if they’ll even remember my name by the time I get around to submitting it to them.

My agent is shopping another m/f romance around, so hopefully that’ll find a good home, and it has series potential, so if it sells that might hijack my writing plans for the year.

Overall? I want to keep writing, keep exploring, keep trying new things and having fun. Of course, I also want to make lots of money and get all my books turned into movies and live in a big house with lots of room for horses and dogs and cabana boys. So… lots of potential!

I hope everyone else is as excited about their new year as I am. Best of luck to everyone!

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