I am moving forward with self-publishing my novelette, “Blood Oath: An Orc Love Story,” this month on Amazon. It is a roughly 14,000-word novelette about a young orc who finds his betrothed wounded on the battlefield after being separated from her for three years, and he must decide whether to be true to his heart or true to his oath to protect a sacred and powerful amulet from falling into the wrong hands. The amazing Carter Reid has been working on the cover artwork, and I’ll be happy to reveal the cover as soon as it’s available. It’s going to be fantastic! To read the full synopsis and check on the status of this forthcoming title, there is now a “Blood Oath” page available under the “Sarah’s Stories” tab in the top menu.
For other news, I wanted to give an update on current works in progress. I went looking through my old junior high school files for a short story I wrote in eighth grade called “Anna Jones and the Search For Lost Bones.” It was rather delightful, I must say, that my fourteen-year-old self envisioned grown-up me being a famous paleontological researcher by age twenty-one, who went on Indiana-Jones-like adventures around the world with her husband. Or, at least, I had invented a wild-west-era character who was a highly idealized version of what I wanted to be “when I grew up.”
If the stories we write are any commentary on how we see the world before us at present, I’ve been working on a story for a while since I graduated from college that revolves around a female character with a master’s degree (still an idealized version of myself) who ends up completely frustrated because she thought she was going to go out and do some fantastic good in the world with her brains and ambition and skills and the goodness in her heart and whatnot, but now the world has come to an end she has no idea how she’s even supposed to survive let alone what her purpose in life is anymore. Fantastic, right? I wonder what my stories will look like once I finally do graduate with my Ph.D. at the ripe old age of thirty-two, and I’m married with three kids to accompany me on all my world adventures. I would say other stories I’ve worked on at present have echoed this same vein of personal frustration in various forms.
I’m still working on the story described above, which I call Destiny of Species. It was my first completed novel project. While I’ve been meaning to rewrite it, I’ve left it on a special back-burner in my mind for a while in order to allow myself to move forward with other projects and leave myself room for my writing to improve.
I also love the basic premise of my old eighth grade story (as underdeveloped as my fiction writing was back then), and have decided it would be fun to create a series of wild-west paleontology steampunk adventure novellas that are a little more quirky and light-hearted. The idea is to change things up a bit in my writing style and appeal to a broader audience. I think fourteen-year-old me would be very happy if I wrote those for her. The tentative title for the first installment in this series is called “The Present is the Key to the Past.”
On a darker note, I woke up one morning a week before LTUE and decided it would be a fantastic idea to write a zombie apocalypse story set in the middle ages, involving the bubonic plague. And magic. If I were to describe my heroine so far, I would say she’s a killer-sweet cross between Queen Elsa (from Frozen) and Katniss (from the Hunger Games). I also wouldn’t be surprised if people decided she resembles Joan of Arc. Let’s just say, she kicks butt–specifically the butts of plagued medieval zombies. This will also be my first hearty attempt at switching between limited-multiple points of view in a story–so you’ll get to see things from the perspective of my heroine’s eight-year-old brother as well. My tentative title for the series is currently Black Death. Once I get the opening of this story put together the way I want it, I’ll start sharing snippets of this story right here on my blog. I’m hoping to turn this into a three- or four-book series, which I’m also very excited to pursue.
My three main projects after putting out “Blood Oath:” Rewriting Destiny of Species (and trying to convince a traditional publisher to take it on when I’m finished), Black Death, and “The Present is the Key to the Past.” My goal is to churn out the first installment in my steampunk series in time for Westercon67, to finish the first book in Black Death by the end of the summer, and to have the first half of Destiny of Species underway by the end of the year. And with any luck, perhaps I’ll get one or two of my still-circulating short stories published in anthologies or magazines as well. Are you guys excited? Cause I’m excited! I’d better get writing… 🙂