Update: Finished! Also, Finished! Also, Scrambling to Complete Stuff

OKAY, A LOT GOING ON. There’s lots of news, so it’s hard to know where to start. But I have to start somewhere, so:

The TUYO World Companion, ebook version, ought to be available today. I hit publish Sunday evening. Many relieved sighs that everything was finished by today, because I really wanted to to get it out by today, and here it is, barely. I hope. KDP says it can take up to 72 hours to publish a book, but usually it’s more like a couple of hours, so barring something going wrong, I hope it’s available by the time you read this post, which I also wrote Sunday evening, so I haven’t actually SEEN the World Companion go live yet, but I hope there are no glitches. It’s up! Here’s a link: Tuyo World Companion.

I loaded the World Companion to KDP and scanned through the entire preview with every new tweak, AND I have looked at it on my Kindle AND my phone, and adjusted the formatting until after many finicky adjustments it looks good on both — and Craig looked at it on HIS Kindle — and as far as I know it looks good. If anybody hits any formatting weirdness on whatever device, let me know and I will beg an expert for help, but I think it is good to go. Also! Quite a few people participated in producing this book, so if I inadvertently left someone out of the acknowledgments during the flurry of last minute tweaking, a thousand apologies, and please remind me and I will add your name, because I greatly appreciate you all.

I’m having some trouble getting the maps to load properly in the paperback version and I don’t want to rush — I swear, I had it, but something went funky — anyway, I think I ought to be able to hit publish for that version this week. Almost totally for sure! Oh, by the way, the final wordcount was just barely under 130,000 words, so THAT is why I’m a little late moving seriously to work on SILVER CIRCLE. The novella is just under a third of the total length, and I hope you enjoy it!


The TUYO series is on sale starting today. This is the day to recommend to friends that they buy this series. I lowered the prices by hand, so the sale prices OUGHT to apply in Canada as well as the UK and the US, hopefully also in Australia and basically everywhere. Even if you already have the series, if you live somewhere other than the US or the UK, I would appreciate it if you would check and confirm that the whole series is showing price reductions wherever you live. That would be helpful in planning future promotions.

I checked Sunday evening and all the prices were down in the US, so it looks fine! I will put the prices back up this coming Saturday.


The audiobooks of SUELEN and TANO are both finished and both available! Yay!

So that’s definitely good. TANO was a particular challenge because there were so many voices, including all those young men. I think the narrator did a great job. They all sound distinctive. Sinowa sounds great, Marag sounds great, Ryo sounds all right, Aras sounds acceptable, and I’m just really pleased with it. There weren’t nearly as many voices in SUELEN; that narrator wasn’t as good at doing lots of different voices, but it also wasn’t as important.


I’ve moved on to final proofing for INVICTUS: CAPTIVE. Once again feeling stressed about this! I guess I’ve felt stressed at this point before every single release this year. Probably every single release ever. In this case, I’ve got to have the final version loaded by September 11, which is exactly three weeks from today. I’ve gotten a proofing copy in paper and I’ve also sent it to myself in ebook form so I can read it on my phone while walking the dogs. I’ve said this before, but I’m still amazed at how much more I catch when I read the book in a different format.

I’m still doing minor revision for INVICTUS: CRISIS. It’s on the To Do list for the coming week, you bet, but I don’t think it will take that long. I sure hope it doesn’t take more than a day or two longer, after which this one will also move into final proofing, for a change well before it’s due out. By the way, getting to this point means that based on feedback from early readers, I’ve added two — or was it three? — more chapters, plus additional scenes in a different chapter. That’s in addition to extensive tweaking throughout.

Wow, I’ll be SO glad to check off the INVICTUS duology and move on.

What else? Oh, right —


I’ve re-read COPPER MOUNTAIN and the 4th story collection. I enjoyed that. I do enjoy going back and re-reading series books, which probably is not a surprise since otherwise I probably wouldn’t write series in the first place. In this case, I made actual notes in pencil in the books about stuff that needs to be handled in SILVER CIRCLE. That’s not something I’ve ever done before, but this time, yes. The real point of re-reading isn’t so much to remember details — that’s important, but it’s not the point. The actual point is to put myself back in this world and this story so that scenes start to occur to me. Attractive scenes, that I’m eager to write. I need those scenes to start unrolling in my mind because if that doesn’t happen, it’s a thousand times harder to get words down.

And whew, that happened, so that’s great! I’m still being pulled away from SILVER CIRCLE by all the detail work for everything else, but the beginning of the story has come together in my head. At least, I think it has. Lots of rapid-fire scenes to begin with, lots of urgency right off the bat. It’s going to be a fast-paced story, probably. I hope I will actually write the first scenes this week, and regardless, I should certainly be able to make significant progress fairly fast in September, which is now the goal, since August is practically over.

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15 thoughts on “Update: Finished! Also, Finished! Also, Scrambling to Complete Stuff”

  1. I can report that on Amazon.de all the Tuyo books except Tasmakat are reduced in price as Kindle books. ^^

  2. So happy to see the Tuyo World Companion in its final form! I got the ad for the series in my BookBub e-mail this morning also, so hopefully it’s reaching your intended audience :)

  3. I really liked the short story— Tano and Arayo have all come to life nicely. I do like how in this world all your characters try their best to be honorable and generous- it makes the hurt feelings or bad behavior that much more jarring. I liked reading what influenced you, too.

  4. I really enjoyed Returning Hokino’s Knife. I’ve skipped around a little in the other sections but look forward to reading them.

    Unfortunately I see an error in chapter 6 of the novella.

    *** spoiler warning ***

    Right after Arayo hands his younger brother to Garoyo, the text says he and his sister walk away “leaving their very little brother in the care of the warleader of the inTasiyo.”

    I almost physically flinched from that. Ack, ack, not the inTasiyo!

  5. OtterB, thank you, you’re the second person to point to that REALLY AWFUL typo, and I’m updating the ebook now.

    For TASMAKAT, typo corrections appeared magically in my version without my having to go to Amazon and check for updates, so give it a week and hopefully that will be corrected!

  6. I spent too much time reading the world companion over breakfast this morning and was slightly late to start work as a result. I’m enjoying it SO MUCH, especially the chatty conversational style, the mentions of what we know and don’t know—it’s exactly the voice I love from your blog. (Also I want to try those recipes.)

    I particularly love the letters, and how the voice of each writer and their relationship to the reader comes through so clearly. Especially the patient, deferential, but firm way in which Aras’ wife corrects his mothers’s no-doubt slightly histrionic concerns about Aras’ newly acquired barbarian tribesman!

    I’m saving the novella for a day when I really need to cheer up. (Or at least until the weekend.)

  7. Thank you, Mary Beth! I’m so curious about what parts readers dip into first — I’m sure it’s highly individual. If it were someone else’s companion, I’d hit the letters and recipes first.

    I definitely enjoyed testing the recipes … probably a little too much! Lots of pastries for a while there!

  8. I read the Interview first, which was really fun and answered some questions I’d always wondered about—so very well done! I was also curious if you wrote both the questions and the answers, or if someone else came up with some of the questions.

    Then I just flipped to the front and tore straight through, from General Notes onwards. (I admit, I haven’t read the alphabetical list of people either, but I’m going to keep it on hand next time I beta read!)

  9. I’m glad you liked it, Mary Beth! I wrote both the Qs and As, but I based some of the questions on the sorts of questions people always ask. That’s why it starts by asking, “Why do all the books have male protagonists?” — People do ask that!

    The character list will hopefully have some entertaining comments in it; I tried to make some of the entries fun to read, even though I largely expect to refer to it when I need to remind myself of Rakasa’s wife’s name or whatever.

  10. I am so exited that the World Companion is out! Obviously I scrolled through looking for my pictures first, but then I went back to the cover and read everything in order. All the changes I noticed from the first version I read seem like improvements, so I do not apologize for making you rearrange everything :)

    Also, I finally read No Foreign Sky (it’s good!) and the preview at the end made me really want to read Invictus immediately!!

  11. I enjoyed Hokino’s knife, the inKarano story and the letters. Haven’t read all the character lists and world description sections, but it’s nice to know there is more content there I can dip into later.

    I also told myself that I could reread Tasmakat when the maps came out, and I have now finished it and had some time to think about it. Many people have said that they enjoy the Tuyo series because all the main characters are trying to do their best. I agree with this. I realized on this reread another thing that makes the stories enjoyable for me is that not only do the characters try to be good, but they also try to help eachother be good. The whole Ugaro culture really values virtue, and encourages every person to become the best version of themselves.

    This is a feature of Rachel’s books that help make them both more interesting and comfort reads for me. I think this is uncommon in SFF books today, even those that might qualify as “positive fantasy” (or however we want to label that fuzzy category). In most books the main characters do help eachother, but they help eachother to survive, to defeat a common enemy, to save the world, or to accomplish some other goal. Rarely do we see them consistently them helping eachother to be better people.

    Looking back, I do see that many of my favourite books have this feature. I think I like training stories (such as the Paladin by CJC, which I recently read on Rachel’s recommendation) because they often train the student’s attitude and character as well as learning skills. Both Narnia and The Lord of the Rings contain this element (the ring is a great test of character, and the characters have to encourage eachother to resist it). I think one of the reasons The Curse of Chalion is my favourite LMB book is that not only is Cazaril good, but also that he helps the people around him be good. Many of Rachel’s other books are also good in this way, especially the first Death’s Lady book, but also the Black Dog series (all those black dogs need structure and encouragement from others to deal with their shadows). Still, after listing these examples, I can’t think of many more.

    I would appreciate recommendations of more books like this, if anyone can think of them.

  12. Melanie, this is a great idea for a post. I’ll have to give this some thought, see what other books I can think of that fit this category. I think, besides The Curse of Chalion, we do see this in LMB’s other books, with the Penric novellas being particularly good examples. I bet that’s one reason the best of those novellas are so very appealing.

  13. Rachel, I would love to see a post from you on this. One of the things that makes this topic interesting for me is that there are so many different ways that “helping eachother be better people” manifests itself, depending on the author, the book set up and culture, individual characters, etc. Even within your own books there is such a great variety in how characters do this, eg. Daniel, Grayson, Aras and Hokino all successfully help other people become stronger and more virtuous, but they each use quite different methods. I’d love to see what examples you come up with.

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