Finally MARCH!

It’s March today!

And EVERYTHING HAPPENS IN MARCH!!

I’m kind of thrilled. In case you couldn’t tell. SPRING happens in March, and a new baby happens in March, and (in case you hadn’t heard) a new BOOK happens in March!

In fact, you can go to Amazon right here right now and buy your very own copy of STONE ALLIANCE! It’s all ready to go! And if you’re curious what the early reviewers are saying . . .

“A fast paced book . . . the author does a wonderful job drawing you into the world she created. It is easy to feel like it is all real as you read the book. The story flows wonderfully with twists and loops.” Emmy Mom (full review)

“The battle that goes on within Rustav is intense. I won’t give away spoilers, but if I was him I would be scared of myself as well. Right from the get go we are thrown into chaos. Emily does such a good job dragging you into this world.” Lord of the Book Reviews (full review)

Go read it and tell me what you think!! Happy March, everyone!

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Priorities…

Blogging was not high on my list of priorities today. But I’m trying to be better at being consistent, so I’m taking a minute to update and using this post as a place to lay out my projects and prioritize what needs to happen first. So this is what I have in front of me:

  • New beta read! I’m most excited about this one, so it’s probably going to get top slot. I love reading new books from new writer friends, and this looks like a good one.
  • Rewriting. This is something I’d love to lock myself up and devote my day to, but it’s the absolute least pressing. But I’m so excited about how this novel is turning out! It’s a plot I’ve been tossing around and reshaping for years, and it’s finally coming together.
  • Door prizes. I’m pulling together the door prizes for my launch party next Saturday, and I’m SO EXCITED! They look amazing. I’ll post a picture once it’s all done.
  • Other launch party prep. I’ve got to decide which part I’m going to read, what exactly I’m going to talk about, etc.
  • Layout design. I’m designing the interior layout for another author’s book and loving every minute of it. It’s good to be back on the editing/design side of the profession. Being a writer is my first and foremost passion, but I sure love the editing role as well. It’s been a couple of  years since I’ve done it professionally, but I’m hoping to get more into it in the near future.

Okay, time to get moving here. What are you working on today?

Visual Inspiration

One of the fun things about being an author is that it brings you into contact with so many incredibly talented creative minds. With my cover now out in the world, I wanted to take a minute to introduce you to the man behind the cover image.

Let’s start by sneaking a look at the photo that ended up on my cover:

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Isn’t that stunning? I saw this picture on Kesler Ottley’s Instagram when I was just starting to think about how I wanted my cover to look, and I knew it was PERFECT. It’s basically a scene directly out of the first chapter of Stone Alliance. And it’s gorgeous.

Kesler was fabulous to work with and made so many little tweaks and adjustments to make it come out just right. He was totally invested in making his photo work for my cover, and I’m so grateful for his talent and dedication!

I wanted to showcase his work for you a little, and he graciously sent me some of his photos to post on my blog. So sit back and enjoy!

Isn’t it lovely? And there are EVEN MORE amazing photos where those came from! Check out his accounts below and order some prints to hang around your desk and inspire you!

All covered!

Today’s the day! With one month to the release of Stone Alliance, I’m pleased to present . . . THE COVER!

Ready?

Stone Alliance front cover

I’m biased, I know, but . . . I love it! Stars and clouds and ocean and craggy rocks . . . happy sigh. Here’s the lowdown on what you’re in for:

Haunted by his transformation, Rustav returns home to a war-torn land. More attacks from the island demons ravage the peninsula each day, and a centuries-old grudge threatens to tear down the last wall standing between Rustav’s people and swift destruction.

Determined to save his people and terrified that he might cause their destruction, Rustav must rebuild long-lost trust between three estranged cultures while concealing the secret that could crush the last hope of salvation for his people.

Coming March 2, 2016!

The adventure begins with Demon’s Heart, available now at Barnes and Noble and Amazon!

And in case you need more Emily in your life, find me on these other sites:

Twitter: @ehbates 

Instagram: @ehbates.author 

Facebook: facebook.com/ehbates.author

You’ll start happening too

Out there things can happen
and frequently do
to people as brainy
and footsy as you.

And when things start to happen,
don’t worry. Don’t stew.
Just go right along.
You’ll start happening too.

(Dr. Seuss, Oh, the Places You’ll Go!)

* * *

Things have been happening all over the place around here. Last week, I heard there was a new bookstore in the area, and I had to go check it out.

The Neverending Bookshop is a delightful little used bookstore in downtown Bothell. Scout loves the children’s section, where, if you look carefully, you can find good evidence of the owner’s love of Star Wars. I love the shelves–I’ll have to see if I can get a picture next time I’m there. Altogether a charming atmosphere and–the best part–chock-full of books.

I got talking to the owner, Annie, while I was there, who, by the way, is as fabulous as her bookshop. After bonding over fantasy books and exchanging a couple of emails, we set up a launch party for Stone Alliance!

I’ll be at The Neverending Bookshop on March 5 at 2:00pm. More details will come as we get closer, but save the date–and if you’re in the area, go take a look at the bookstore beforehand! Happy reading!

It’s coming!

I had a lovely rant planned for today, but I can’t muster enough energy to get worked up about it right now. So look forward to that next week. In the meantime, I thought I’d share a few updates on things that are coming up in the near future.

First things first. As I’m now less than three months out, I suppose it’s about time that I announce I’m having a baby. Some of you who follow me on Twitter may have picked up on that already, but I don’t think I ever got around to posting it here on the blog. We’re having another girl and can’t wait to meet her! Scout is getting more excited about the little sister idea and mostly likes to tell people that “Mom is getting bigger and BIGGER!”

Preparations for Stone Alliance are coming along nicely. I’m in the final stages of editing and have been working with some truly talented and wonderful people on the map and cover. Release date is March 2nd, which means it’s coming out (assuming no surprises) shortly before the baby does. I’m excited for it to be out in the world!

If you’re interested in helping out with the cover reveal or the blog tour (free e-book!), email me at bumblesbooks at gmail dot com. More info on that will be forthcoming shortly.

And now, I found these lovelies waiting for me at the library this morning…

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…so I shall leave you all to your lives and go devour several hundred pages of joy. Happy reading!

November’s lessons learned

NaNo-2015-Winner-Banner

I crossed the NaNoWriMo finish line today, wrapping up my draft (rather hastily) at 52K words. I expected more of a sense of triumph; instead, I just feel a little lost. What am I supposed to do now that I don’t have to wring words out of every second of every day?

Write more words, of course!

Next up on my plate is getting Stone Alliance ready for publication on March 2nd. (Hooray!) But before I move on to that, I wanted to put together a list of things I learned from my first NaNoWriMo experience.

  1. I can produce 2000-4000 words a day. Regularly.
  2. Other things have to be cut out in order to make that happen.
  3. Social media is a great thing to cut out. Signing off of Facebook drastically increased my productivity and improved my general sense of well-being.
  4. I can’t keep up that pace indefinitely, nor do I want to. Devoting myself to churning out a first draft is good while it lasts, but at some point, I do have to get back to marketing and networking and, you know, cleaning the bathrooms.
  5. Word count deadlines are a great way to shut down my inner editor.
  6. I’m not sure I like shutting down my inner editor quite that much. I don’t know, I have to get a little more space between me and this craziness; but right now, I’m even less thrilled with what I produced than I usually am with first drafts.
  7. In the end, setting a goal is the way to go. No matter what the goal is, I’m much more productive when I have a solid, set goal to reach–and all the better when I have writing buddies to hold me to it!

So am I converted? Is NaNoWriMo going to become an annual event in my life? I still don’t know. I’m glad to have a finished draft of this story that has at least five half-written incarnations on my hard drive, but like I said, I’m not terribly pleased with what I’ve written. Then again, that could just be because I’m so ready to put Heather and Dean away and not so much as think their names again for several months, possibly even until next November. We’ll see what happens as time passes.

In the meantime, it’s time to get serious about the final stages of Stone Alliance. Also, keep an eye out for some giveaways coming soon!

How was your NaNo experience?