I know… I know… I am kinda late again. I swear life is kicking my tush lately – I guess I better start kicking back
Anyway… Lets get this party started..
All following is unedited and subject to change. All works copyright Rebecca Ethington and Imdalind Press – All right reserved.
Through Glass – Episode 4
March 21st 2014
I had already accepted Cohen as dead. I had already mourned and cried and held onto him, but for some reason—thinking of his eyes always full of so much expression, dimmed into that of a monster… a monster that Travis obviously had other plans for than what I had originally thought.
Pain seized through my chest as if I had been shot again. I might have been.
“But if we find him—” Travis began, his voice suddenly rising in an excitement that only cut through me, “if we know which one he is—if we find him, then maybe we can find out what Abran has done to those people. If they are monsters—”
“You mean you want to experiment on Cohen,” I finally interrupted him, my words clipped in shock and pain.
“Just the way they wanted to experiment on me.” I could feel the panic, the temper coming back and it scared me.
“Not the same way—”
“Exactly the same way! You want to open him up and see how he ticks—”
“No, Alexis!” he interrupted me with a snap, the anger in his voice jolting through me. The muscles in his jaw flexed as he looked at me with the same hard look as before, the childish gleam that I had seen in him all but gone now, leaving only my older, powerful brother.
I didn’t want this. I didn’t want this for Cohen, for the image of what he was in my mind, in my heart. I wanted him, but he wasn’t there anymore.
“I will not do that to him,” Travis said, his voice almost a whisper as he tried to calm the angry panic I was sure he could see move through me.
“Then what, Travis? You want to manicure his talons… his…” My breath caught as I said it, an iron vice closing over my heart as I felt the burn behind my eyes, the burn I wanted so hard to ignore, the tears that I wanted to pretend I could no longer shed.
I knew it wasn’t that easy, though.
It couldn’t be.
Just saying the words had let a tiny part of me out; the part that still clung to that final image of Cohen, the part that still remembered his kiss, the warmth of his hands…
Without thinking about it, I lifted my arm, the sleeve of the over-large, leather jacket rolling back to reveal the ink pen drawing I had spent so many years tracing. The drawing that brought back so many memories of his smile.
I could still see him, but now I saw something more. I saw golden claws where charcoal-stained fingers used to be, and slick, black skin covered with razor sharp feathers instead of the scruff that had so taken my heart.
I didn’t see Cohen anymore.
I saw a monster.
“He’s gone,” I said, trying to keep the break out of my voice and failing.
So last December when everything was going crazy and I had to push back Soul of Flame and the world was imploding (I’m probably exaggerating, but lets go on) I made the decision to break Through Glass up into Novellas and release them much like the serials of old.
This was a hard decision and I really stewed over it for quite a while until it became clear that I needed to. It got to the point that the reasons to split it up where far outweighing the reasons not to. With the weights and deadlines being placed on me by possible contracts and agents and all sort of trouble it became clear I wouldn’t have the time to really devote to it. Now, before you all start raising your pitchforks thinking that I am going to be releasing product that is far below my usual standard.
Because I don’t play that game.
In fact Episode Four of Through Glass took me two weeks to write and edit before I sent it to my editor – so obviously my perfectionist standards are still intact.
Which begs the question – if you are taking so long to write the episode than why release them as ‘episodes’ or Novellas?
Well that brings me to reason number 2 that I made the decision to change the format of the series.
This series really doesn’t lend itself to a traditional series set up.
I sat down in November, ready to start working on the next Through Glass book, and began plotting. Five days later I had finished plotting out the entire series and I couldn’t find a clear breakdown for each book. It was just one long story.
I am sure you noticed that I have a tendency to do that.
It’s really not my fault. And what is worse, I am REALLY bad at deciding when to end a book, and thinking I wrapped everything up in a nice little bow only to have really just made a MASSIVE cliff hanger. Such is the way with the first Through Glass volume.
But when I was looking at the plotting I began to realize a theme within my overall plot for Through Glass.
The whole things plays out like a TV show or a comic book… excuse me – graphic novel.
A big ‘ol plot with ups and downs and cliffhangers and mystery and bad guys and good guys. In fact if I knew an amazing artist I would probably give it some kick butt images…
As of right now I have broken down my big ol plot into episodes, and I have 30… so far… I still have more plot to break down, and as always I am sure things will change.
I know there is still a TON of confusion about what is going on with through Glass and how the original books fits into the novellas and visa versa. I haven’t really been secretive with it – but I know with algorithms and how social media works sometimes things don’t get seen or explained properly… so I have an image…
Each Episode is about 20-25 thousand words which means that for every three and a half episodes you are reading a full size novel (The original Through Glass Novel was only 88k). Which means the whole thing is about 8 full sized novels.
Now is about the time I start hearing the usual complaint.
“Serials are just an author money grab.”
I am going to address this and I am going to try REALLY HARD not to type in all caps or get snarky. But honestly, this mind set infuriates me.
First – some math. I said earlier that one full size novel equates to a little over 3 of the Through Glass novellas.
I will be charging .99cents for each novella… so three novellas equals… 2.97.. and a little extra for the ‘half’ and you get 3.45… I am confused… how is this a money grab? 3.45 is less than a latte – less than a value meal – heck – its less than buying SHOE LACES. And it’s a book. A book that cost more to produce than the aglet on the end of lace (Thanks Phineas and Ferb for imprinting that dumb word in my brain). A book that spent months to make, and cost blood sweat and tears… How is charging the same (or less) money for three novellas as I would for one full length novel being greedy. In fact – how is charging 3.99 for one novel being greedy… which brings us to our next point.
I also said earlier that it took me two weeks to write the first Through Glass Novella… 2 weeks… and it’s a money grab to charge .99cents for that?
I am really confused.
I am confused because authors for some reason are expected to give our hard work away, expected to write fast, expected to take the bullies without complain.
It’s really not conducive to a creative atmosphere.
Besides, novellas are NOT a new idea, so I am not sure why it is suddenly so taboo.
Wait? They are not a new idea…?
Serial publication has been around forever – and was first really set in stone by an author by the of Charles Dickens… that’s right THE CHARLES DICKENS. He wrote serials… quite a few in fact. And you know what’s even crazier? He wasn’t the only one..
Let’s look at some of the books that were ORIGINALLY published in serial form:
Charles Dickens – The Pickwick Papers
Alexandre Dumas – The Three Musketeers
Alexandre Dumas – The Count of Monte Cristo
Harriet Beecher Stowe – Uncle Tom’s Cabin
Leo Tolstoy – Anna Karenina
Wilkie Collins – The Moonstone
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle – The Sherlock Holmes Stories
Stephen King – The Plant
Orson Scott Card – Hot Sleep (this one is cheating because it wasn’t originally released in serial, but I am going to keep it in there)
The list is huge – and the names are massive. These are classics my friends, classics that I am sure were required reading in many a high school English class. You see, serialized novels are nothing new. And waiting long periods of time for stories to complete themselves, or for the next ‘episode’ to come out if not new either. Ann Karenina for example took over five years for all of the episodes to release. FIVE YEARS. And some of those were with months in between each new piece.
Okay…. I think I am getting a little worked up…
What I want to leave you with in this post is a few things:
#1 – Through Glass is going to be a kick ass serial and will probably take a few years to get through the whole story.
#2 – I am going to try to get the episodes out every other week. But sometimes life gets in the way and there may be a little bit of lag in between some episodes. Its no biggie – It could be Anna Karenina…
#3 – Serials are nothing new, nor are they a money grab. Get that thought out of your head and support the authors who spend so much time pouring their hearts onto paper. I mean it. Do it or I will send a Tar after you – cuz I can do that.
#4 – You guys are amazing – fer reals. I have an amazing readership and the support you give me is amazing.
Also – if you haven’t started Through Glass yet – do it now! The first book is free…
I am kind of in love with Tuesdays now… I don’t know why… I think it maybe because I have so many AMAZING projects in the works and I am so excited to share all of them with you. Because… you know… my brain is all sorts of crazy – and maybe a little bit awesome.
A little bit.
Anyway… For today’s Tuesday Teaser I would like to share a piece from my next to be released full sized novel (in fact if I can keep it under 200k it may be a miracle)
Of River and Raynn – The Catalyst
The usual warnings: All following is unedited and subject to change. All works copyright Rebecca Ethington and Imdalind Press – All right reserved.
The scream ripped from my throat as I tried to push the burn out from under my skin, but it stayed solid, the haunting light of the room shifting from red to yellow. The large metal door smashed open, a stream of white orderly’s flooding the space. Their faces blended together, the same woman coming in two or three times, making me wonder if she was really there, and what I was really seeing.
Rough hands pulled the long white hospital gown up as I continued to fight against the straps, as I fought against the hands that where everywhere, pushing prodding, touching, searching. I looked away from the wavering face of the nurse, her face multiplying into the others, into more people that were shaking and bending as I looked at them.
My head swam at the ocean of faces, the scream that tore its way out of my throat only growing at the pale face that looked back at me from behind the crowd, her blond hair woven around the shards of ice she wore as a crown, her green eyes smiling as she watched my struggle.
I tried to stop the scream, but it only came harder, my body fighting against the restraints.
I was dreaming.
I must still be dreaming.
“Where is he,” the pale woman hissed. Her voice was all I seemed to be able to hear over my scream. “Where is the Catalyst?”
I tried to move past the dream, let the scream follow me into reality. Let the tall woman fade into nothing. But she stayed, her white silken gown flowing around the room like smoke through the people that surrounded me.
“Go away!” My voice shook as I screamed, my body writhing and seizing in fear, in my mad need to get away from the eyes of the woman, the hands of the people.
“You can’t have him!”
A sharp stab moved into my skin just above my hip, a warm numbness radiating from the spot until my body stopped moving of its own accord. Even though I still begged my mind to fight, screamed at my body to move. Nothing happened. I tried to fight, I tried to scream, but my body didn’t answer, my soul plunging deep into my heart until I felt like I was dead, my eyes still focused on the white ladies face.
“Where is he?” she growled, my body numb and unresponsive as I watched her.
“Ffion.” Her name hissed out of me, my overly large tongue stumbling over the word.
Her eyes widened as I spoke her name aloud, the heavy drugs causing me to say a name I rarely uttered. The hatred behind her eyes bored into me until the dream broke and she drifted back into my subconscious, the white smoke of her dress fading into the red skies that still kissed the ceiling.
Now to you, this may not mean a lot, but to me… of boy – my dad will never live this down. You see – I grew up in a house full of treckies. Like HARD CORE treckies. Like my brother had a uniform and we never missed an episode. I may or may not have worn a uniform of my own in order to impress a boy I liked in the ‘role play’ club my dad had enrolled us in. I won’t go into it much more than that simply because that’s a look into my deep dark past that I would honestly like to pretend never happened…
Well, two days ago my life came full circle so to speak. You see, I got a message form the fantastic Tammy Blackwell about a post she had seen on Wil Wheatons Tumbler page. Now, if you don’t know who Wil Wheaton is – he played Wesley Crusher in Star Trek next Generation – and in a word was the only reason girls like me survived in our house full of Star Trek enthusiasts.
Many girls reading this will understand.
So, when Tammy emailed me that link and I clicked on it – there may have been a little bit of hyperventilating going on. You see Amazon in all it’s recommendation skills had recommended Soul of Flame to Wil Wheaton, and Wil – recognizing Amazon’s terrible ability to decide what people really want to read – posted it in jest. (which is awesome)
I for one thought it was funny. I mean I have gotten some of those terrible emails too. But also, isn’t it kind of awesome that Amazon recommended my book to someone… dare I say it… famous…
It always boggles my mind that my books have stretched so far… and every time some one posts something about it – even if its to make fun of how Amazon markets stuff (because lets be honest – Amazons ‘recommended feature is shoddy at best)– I get a little more humbled about how much I have been blessed by this, and how amazing my life has become.
So thanks Wil Wheaton – you officially made me cooler than my dad – and that was something I never thought would happen.
EDITED TO ADD: For some reason after posting this I had a few fans who went after Wil telling him the book is good and he shouldn’t bad mouth it. GUYS!! Please – #1 – I think this is funny that Amazon even recommended the book to him the first place (even I can tell it wouldn’t be in his genre)! #2 – Not every book is for every person – #3 – BE NICE!!
I can’t stress this enough. NEVER post something online that you wouldn’t say to someone’s face. I don’t care if you are in a bad mood. I don’t care if its your favorite book in existence… it wasn’t for him (and if you follow him you would know this) besides the post was in jest… I just can’t shake my head enough at this.
I guess… since I am adding stuff… I should probably add this too… late last year when I was in my depressive low and couldn’t write anything to save my life was first when Wil Wheaton came back on my radar – he wrote a blog post about how he felt in adequate, and about depression, and given where I was at the time that post really helped me. So in some ways – without Wil Wheaton – you wouldn’t even have Soul of Flame…
See…. Its all come full circle…
Additional note: Finding all these Star Trek gifs was A LOT harder than it should have been – in fact I only found ONE with Wesley Crusher in it and I have been told this post needs it – - so here you go – -
Soul of Flame released last week to mass amounts of awesome!! (I don’t know how else to phrase it – so I guess that will do) When it released I challenged you all to leave your honest reviews – and boy did you deliver!! As a way to say thank you for all the AMAZING reviews (I think we are up to 155 on Amazon now) I am going to be writing you a Imdalind Novella as told through Thom and Wyn’s Point of Views!! I am so excited!! A title, cover, and release date will be forth coming… but until then, enjoy this little bit of a teaser…
The following is unedited and subject to change. All works copyright Rebecca Ethington and Imdalind Press
“Wynifred?” Thom’s voice drifted from behind me in a wall of worry that caused me to look up. I tried not to let it dig into me, tried not to let the deep concern that lined his face bring about the confusion that I had been fighting.
But it did anyway.
It did because it was the same calm face he always had, the same calm eyes that I had fallen in love with all those years ago. The look pulled at my heart, the broken shard so raw and jagged after loosing Talon, the shards trying so hard to place them selves back together, the emotion only growing the more that I was around him.
I bit my lips together in an attempt to keep the emotion inside and went back to digging through the dust covered boxes that I had hidden in the back of the room all those years ago, before I was caught, before I was marked and forgot everything.
“What are you looking for?” Thom tried again, the soft sound of his footsteps echoing around me as he moved closer.
“Her blanket.” I said simply knowing I didn’t have to elaborate.
Thom said nothing, I only heard the sharp intake of his breath before he walked beside me, walking right up to an old trunk that had been hidden in the back, the top lifting before he even reached it.
“I had the other one on my bed,” Thom said as he lifted the old blanket from the trunk the heavy woven fibers as bright as the day the travelers had given them to her. “To always keep her close. Keep you close.”
His voice was soft as it rolled into me, and I couldn’t help it, I collapsed into him, his arms wrapping around me as he covered us with the old blanket, wrapping the edges around us and trapping us together.
“I know it’s hard,” Thom whispered, “But I will help you through this.”
“I thought I had it all figured out, I knew who I was when I ran from Edmund, but now there are friends who don’t know who I am, and my heart feels torn in two.”
“Are you saying I need to find you something to kill?”
“Something like that.” I said, knowing it was closer to the truth than I wanted to admit.