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...
I'm always nervous before a book launch.
I'm excited too. There's a lot of energy building up to a new book, especially with a series as popular as Cradle, because you people seem to really want this book for some reason.
But as the desire for the book builds, so do expectations. Can I meet those expectations?
I don't know, man.
Usually my answer to that is "Heck no." When I wrote my first real short story, it was for a class in my first year of college. I was 18. As I passed it around the class, I told everybody, "Hey, go easy on me, it's my first one, I just wrote it last night, it's probably the worst thing you've ever read, don't hate me, on second thought actually don't take this copy, it will probably give you AIDS."
Something like that.
The point is, I told everyone to lower their expectations because my story was garbage. And then in our next class, when everyone had read it, one of the students gave me advice that I still go back to today: "You shouldn't tell people your story sucks. I went into this thinking it was going to be terrible because you said so, and it was actually okay, but you saying what you did lowered my opinion of the story before I'd ever read it."
That stuck with me. It was the best advice I received in that entire class.
And after the guy said it, the teacher said "That's off-topic. Don't say anything that doesn't relate to the story."
Do I remember any story-specific advice anyone gave me about that story? I do not.
Almost thirteen years later, I'm 17 books into a career that has succeeded several degrees of magnitude beyond anything I ever hoped for, much less expected, and I feel much the same way now as I did then.
When people get excited about the book coming out, I get excited too, but there's still a voice inside me that goes "Yeah, but don't get too excited, because it's not as great as you think."
Every time. Seventeen times now.
Fortunately, I know that voice doesn't have my best interests at heart. It's just here to ruin my fun. If I had continued to listen to the voice, I would never have released any books.
That would have made the last seven and a half years way more boring.
I used to think that when I proved the voice wrong, it would go away, but it never has. I just have to ignore it a little more each time, pushing it further and further into the back of my mind.
That way I can be a little less nervous and a little more excited.
Because hey...I'm releasing a book today!
So thanks for sticking with me, everybody! Whether you've been around since the beginning or you're just joining us now, thanks for giving my books a shot!
And I hope you love Wintersteel!
Of the Cradle series
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Hey, what about those short stories you claim to have already written?
Apparently they're kept here!