WRITING AS MILLA VANE…
A DANCE OF SMOKE & STEEL (A GATHERING OF DRAGONS, BOOK 3)
As Anumith the Destroyer’s army draws nearer to the western realms, an alliance is forming to stand against him. The heir to the throne of Krimathe embarks upon a quest for the goddess Vela—a quest that the goddess has promised will give her strength enough to defeat the Destroyer. All that Laina must do is to stay silent…and serve a man she has sworn to kill. A man who helped destroy her family.
MELJEAN, ARE YOU ALIVE?
I am! Not that I could update this page and say differently if I wasn’t. So maybe take that answer with a grain of salt and check my Facebook account, instead. Or @MillaVane on Twitter (I’m not there often, but I do get notifications when I’m tagged.) Just don’t rely on rumor, please, because the internet is a seething mass of conspiracy theories and online versions of the telephone game.
But the reason I haven’t published the Blacksmith is that I had a bad bad bad bad burnout following THE KRAKEN KING. I was still able to write, and have been writing all this time, but getting back into steampunk and the book I’ve wanted to write forever—the Blacksmith’s—wasn’t happening. And…it still isn’t.
So if you’re here looking for an update on the Blacksmith, I don’t have one. And I probably won’t have one for a while. I’ve put it aside for the time being, because my choice is to either force a book that isn’t coming (and that I’ve hated every time I’ve put words to page, even though I love the story in my head) or just wait until it does. I’d rather do the latter, even though it sucks. For some reason, the steampunk is stuck. I have my theories about why, and I’d be happy to discuss them in terms of being a writer or just in general, but that’s not what this page is for.
So what will be coming in the future from me? Right now, the barbarians. You might remember the story I wrote as Milla Vane in the NIGHT SHIFT anthology, called “The Beast of Blackmoor.” Well, I’ve got a whole world built in my head and about five stories knocking around my skull, so I’m slowly working on those. The first one, the story that I’ve called VENGEANCE for a long time (but will probably have another title … UPDATE: A HEART OF BLOOD AND ASHES) is nearing completion, and my publisher will be publishing it in place of the Blacksmith’s story (I’m pretty sure.) I don’t have a firm date yet, and it could be 2019 or 2020 before we see that, depending on my publisher. I don’t even know if we’ll use Meljean or Milla Vane as the author name yet.
So that’s what I have! I’m excited to be working in a rich world again, and I love this story. I also still love the Blacksmith’s story, and a part of me is hoping that now, with the “OMG THIS CONTRACT IS DUE AND YOU NEED TO WRITE THIS RIGHT NOW!” feeling gone, it’ll click between my brain and my words. Because the second it does, I’ll write it. I want to write it. But I don’t want to write crap, which is what it is now.