Rachel Neumeier

Fantasy and Young Adult Fantasy Author

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Back cover copy, last time this year, probably

Oh, look, it’s Monday! Well, here in Missouri we had really nice weather all weekend, which is never super helpful when getting stuff done. However:

a) I wrote nine pages for the new chapter I’m inserting into Death’s Lady book 3. I want that to be a short chapter, so I should finish that in the next day or two. Then I’ll be able to drop the ms into the KDP template and check page numbers, which will be good as the cover artist just sent me a draft and, given how fast he works, I expect I will need to give him the page count as soon as possible.

I will also need to give him back cover copy, so please critique the following:

Sometimes the past does not let go.

Tenai is determined that no one will use her to break the fragile peace of her world, even if that means she must support and defend the son of her bitterest enemy. But set against four hundred years of history, that determination may not be enough.

Daniel has come to know far more about Tenai’s enemies than he ever wanted to — and more than she knows herself. Forced into unwilling cooperation with those enemies, Daniel must find a way to defy their plans, protect his daughter, and assist Tenai to overcome the shadows of her past — before it’s too late.

Seriously, all comments on the above are very welcome! Please tear that apart.

While on the subject of Stuff I Did This Weekend:

b) I got distracted by re-reading bits of Tarashana and darned if I didn’t spot like ten new typos that have apparently appeared in the last week. “Because” without the “c” and “along” instead of “a long” and HOW DID THESE TYPOS NOT GET CAUGHT EARLIER? No fewer than, um, five, no six, people, missed those. Unless they literally just appeared, which I guess is conceivable since I tweak a manuscript all the time until it is actually published.

Regardless, that made me read back over a lot of the manuscript. I didn’t catch a lot more actual typos, but catching that many in the first place was honestly a little disconcerting. It also took some time to read a significant fraction of the manuscript. And naturally I tweaked it a little here and there. I won’t be able to really put this away until I hit Publish.

c) I took quick notes on the Black Dog story I have in mind for Tommy, Amira, and Nick so I wouldn’t forget the basic idea for that story, and then I got sucked in and took quick notes on eight more stories. That is twice as many as I planned to write. More than twice, considering I have one already written! In fact, last time I poked at ideas for stories, hardly anything occurred to me and I felt somewhat concerned about that. Lack of inspiration is definitely no longer a problem, though I have a better idea about some of these potential stories than others.

I may not write all the stories I thought of, but it looks like I will probably write more than four. So either the 4th collection will be longish OR there may be a 5th collection set after Silver Circle — oh, look, I’ve decided on a title, btw. Also, I think there may be an epilogue set after Silver Circle. Maybe not a full novel. But a longish story to tie things up and show where some of the characters wind up after a year or two or five.

The Black Dog stories will be the next real project after I get Death’s Lady sorted out. I will be ready to switch to the Black Dog world by the end of the month, hopefully. Surely well before the end of April.

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8 Comments Back cover copy, last time this year, probably

  1. Alison

    Again, the word enemy is used three times in two paragraphs. Maybe: ‘Daniel has come to know far more about Tenei than he ever wanted to- more than she knows herself. Forced into cooperation with Tenai’s adversaries(?)…

  2. Kathryn McConaughy

    “assist Tenai to overcome” seems unnecessarily formal in tone. In the same sentence, would “these enemies” be better than “those enemies”? Since they were just mentioned they seem pretty proximate to me…

  3. Pete Mack

    “to defy their plans”. Maybe “upset their plans”. Defiance is a given with enemies.

    Speaking of typos: Do Kindle content error reports actually make it back to you? I have made a number over the years, but I have no idea if they’re actually useful.

  4. Rachel

    Thank you all!

    Pete, I just like the sound of “defy” better than “upset.” Granted, defiance is probably a reasonable assumption.

    I have never once had KDP report an error to me. I don’t know why they say there’s a way to report errors to authors if they aren’t going to actually send on a report, but as far as I know, that does not actually work. If you send an email to me, that will definitely work.

    Yes, Alison, so it does. I already took the word “enemies” out at least once, but you’re quite right, three is still a lot. Adversaries it will be, at least once.

  5. Alison

    Obv I am no author and hate to presume. I love your writing and could not criticize a thing in your books.

  6. Rachel

    Alison, I definitely appreciate your pointing out the repetition. For some reason, repeated words often don’t press themselves on my attention and that can be a real annoyance, as they’re difficult for me to spot even when I try to pay attention. Plus “adversaries” is a fine word! It definitely improves the paragraph to substitute that for “enemies” one of the times “enemies” occurred.

  7. Mary Beth

    I like that the first paragraph starts with Tenai as an active agent! Though in the second sentence I did wonder what was so bad about 400 years of history—I think of “history” as a neutral term. Maybe “enmity” or some other word to show there’s bad blood underneath this fragile peace?

  8. Rachel

    Thanks, Mary Beth! If you’re the person who pointed out that Tenai didn’t seem to be active in the first draft of back cover copy for this series, then truly, thanks, because that’s the comment that made me put this paragraph in here.

    Maybe I’ll change it to “enmity.” Probably that’s a good idea.

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