Technically we're into Week 3 now, but since this is going to cover my reaction to the last two weeks, I'd say the title's accurate.
I can't tell you anything about the book you don't already know: Wintersteel was a huge success, it's the fastest-selling, highest-reviewed, and most-reviewed of all my books, in addition to being the longest, and it contains the secret of why kids love the taste of Cinnamon Toast Crunch.
I will therefore update you on my feelings. Here we go...
"Boy, that book launch was a lot of fun!"
This has been Feelings Update with Will Wight. Tune in next week to hear Will express hunger.
For real, though, I really enjoyed the days surrounding this book launch. The pre-launch stream was fun, if tiring--it's hard to switch hats that many times--and I've loved seeing you guys discuss and theorize and react to the book.
There was a lot more of that this time. Partially because there are more of you now than there ever have been before, and partially because there was a lot to discuss in this book.
It's still a bizarre feeling to see a bunch of fans tearing the book apart to peer into every little nook and cranny. It's one thing knowing that tens of thousands of people are going to read the story, and it's another thing to pop into Discord and see you dissecting every piece.
It's good weird! But it is...jarring. Like, I made all this stuff up.
So anyway, I had that awesome experience, and then I crashed into a quivering mess for a while as I am wont to do, and now I'm mostly reincorporated and back at the keyboard!
I really can't thank you guys enough. What a great adventure you've given me!
Boy, do I feel silly.
The day before Wintersteel came out, I put up a post talking about my fears and insecurities, and then a day later my book became the best-selling book on the entire Kindle Store. And has thus far stayed there for 24 hours.
There's just some kind of irony there.
I just have to say, the last day has been a blast. I was serious when I said I get really nervous before every launch, but this has been the most fun book launch ever. I'm reading all your reviews and all the discussion, and I'm both relieved and excited that you've loved the book so much.
And, frankly, I didn't realize how excited I would be to hit #1 on the Kindle Store. I never had that as a goal or anything; higher ranking makes your book more visible, which means more people see it, which is a great benefit. But we consistently hit Top 10 with Cradle, and I'm always very happy with that!
#1 is not something I thought was even possible, and for real guys, I was so excited. I cheered and shouted and jumped up and down and everything. My family dumped a bucket of Oreos over my head.
But the most fun part has been seeing how many people are enjoying the book!
This last couple of days has just been fantastic, so from the bottom of my heart: thanks, everybody! Thanks for reading the book, thanks for discussing the book with each other online, thanks for being so excited about it, and thanks for sticking with me!
I love you guys, and above all, thanks for reading!
P.S. The first seven Cradle books should still be free until the end of the day (October 7th), so if you know someone who wants free books, strike while the iron is hot! And the iron is hot right now!
EDIT: Please don't spoil Wintersteel in the comments, guys! I'll have to delete comments that give away clear spoilers.
All Cradle ebooks are free for the next three days! (Getting them for free SHOULD still give you a discount on the audiobook, by the way.)
10% off all Cradle merchandise sale with the discount code "DROSS" is still going on!
Release stream tonight at 9 PM Eastern during which I play video games and answer your questions! (Please no spoilers from those of you who've already read it, or I'll have to make you walk the plank.)
...and, of course, Wintersteel comes out tonight at midnight! If it isn't already out now in your time zone, of course.
Curse you, time zones, making my scheduling so difficult!
Now, on to your regularly scheduled blog post...
Before we begin, I'd like to address anyone who was looking for a physical copy of Wintersteel. The paperback is finally available to order, and if you order it today, it should arrive in most places on Tuesday.
We can't arrange paperback pre-orders or set it up so that we can guarantee delivery on Day 1, but we got Amazon's advice on the best way to get the books to people on October 6th.
They recommended putting it up three days in advance, and that's today!
Additionally, I'd like to invite you all to join me on my Twitch channel (twitch.tv/willwight) this Monday, October 5th, from 9 PM - 12 AM Eastern for my Wintersteel release...celebration? Event?
Anyway, I'm going to be streaming from nine until Wintersteel goes live.
Unlike previous releases, I won't be reading a scene this time. I couldn't do these early scenes justice. Maybe next time.
Instead, I'll be playing random games (most likely Subnautica, but maybe I'll mix it up with some Subnautica) while answering book questions and wearing a hat!
The hat was Twitter's fault.
Now that the housekeeping is out of the way, proceed for the behind-the-scenes content for Underlord!
As a reminder, I won't be covering Uncrowned behind-the-scenes stuff. At least not right now.
I'm not sure how much I can say without spoiling Wintersteel.
(If you don't see the rest of the post, click Read More!)
First off, the easy stuff.
I started off knowing that I wanted to give Lindon a training arc to get him up to speed with everyone else, and a pocket world arc is a staple of cultivation novels everywhere.
I wanted a pocket world that was distinct from anything I'd already done in Traveler's Gate, and I'm a big fan of the underwater aesthetic, so it didn't take me long to decide on an ocean's floor world as the setting.
However, originally the Ghostwater complex was a lot bigger.
Instead of a series of inhabitable domes at the bottom of the sea, Ghostwater was originally a tower with eight floors. Lindon was going to descend each one, the challenge and rewards increasing as he progressed through.
Every floor had a certain stage of advancement it was designed for, and a color of magical water with certain properties, as well as a theme that determined the nature of its wildlife.
After establishing all this, of course, I realized this was way too much. You could set an entire trilogy in a place with this much detail, so I compressed it down to three types of water and three locations.
Honestly, that was better anyway. Having one type of water that improves your spirit in every way is a lot more digestible of a concept than having five different ones that variously improve madra regeneration, madra capacity, madra purity, madra channels, etc.
With only three locations instead of eight, Lindon can spend longer in each place, and they can each have a more unique identity. Like the dream library where he ends up meeting Ziel.
It's still interesting to think about what could have been, though, so click Read More for the original structure of Ghostwater...and the original design of Ziel.
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