Christmas and Odds & Sods

Fireplace_at_ChristmasMiraculously, five days before Christmas, I find myself in the position of having some free time. Not sure how that happened. Somehow the parcels got wrapped, mailed, bagged, and tagged; the vacuum and dust mitt performed a slap and dash; the decorations made it out of the crawl space; and the meals planned themselves.

So I’m sitting here on my duff with a glass of wine in hand and the computer in my lap, and it occurred to me that I probably owe you all an update!

But before I get to that, I’d like to take a moment to say thank you. Your enthusiasm for these characters and this story is heartwarming. Writing is often a solitary venture and every time I hear from one of you, it makes my day. Truly. Thanks for that.

And so…Book IV, titled Penance, has been through the first round of beta readers and is now in the capable hands of intrepid story editor, Nina Munteanu. When she sends it back, I’ll incorporate her comments, and then send it out to the second wave of beta readers. After their comments are folded in, it’ll go to the copy editor. Finally, another beta read and then off to the proof-reader. When those tweaks are done, it’ll be ready to publish. It may seem like an arduous journey but believe me, all those extra eyes will make for a much better story!

Meantime, Viona Halim, has been working on the cover art, which will, once again, originate with a photo. This time the photo was taken on Granville Island, where pivotal scenes in Book IV take place. Viona will edit the photo and then paint it to achieve the same ominous “feel” to it that the others have.

At the same time, I’m working on the back cover blurb, summaries, tag lines, book marks and other promotional material. I’m writing press releases for the spring launch and seeking pre-release reviews (wink, nudge, hint-hint). If you are interested in receiving an e-copy of Penance for review, please let me know. Reviews that are posted to coincide with the book’s release are better than balloon rides, rum in your egg nog and snow on Christmas!

Also, I decided to offer the first three books of the Gift Legacy in a “boxed set” format for the eBook market, starting with Kindle. Viona Halim has prepared a phenomenal cover for the boxed set, which I can’t wait to share with you. For the first time, I’m trying my hand at formatting this edition myself. I’m not the most tech-savvy person, so wish me luck. If the challenge proves too much, I’ll have to hire the expertise.

And then, because apparently I should be offering a nugget to entice readers to sign up for my newsletter (which, sadly, I’ve been neglecting), I’ve been writing a give-away short story. I’m quite excited about it because it’s Jackson’s story. Those of you who’ve read Awakening, will want to read this. It’s Awakening, from Jackson’s viewpoint. Not the whole story, of course, that would be another whole book, but I’ve started pre-Emelynn at the point where Jackson’s father dies, unexpectedly, and will likely take it to the point where Jackson meets Emelynn, which is where Awakening takes over. For those of you who are/were Jackson fans and want to know more about him and especially what motivated his behaviour in Awakening, (you know what I’m talking about!) I think you’ll find this Rashomon treatment compelling.

Of course, I’m still jotting down ideas for the continuation of Emelynn’s story in yet another adventure with Sam Jordan, James Moss and hmm, well…not sure who else might make an appearance in Book V, but it’s sure to be exciting. If you have any ideas, I’d love to hear them.

All the best, from our house to yours, over this holiday season. Cheers!

If you have no idea what I’m going on about, you need to get a copy of Awakening right now! You can order the trade paperback for $18 and change from Chapters/Indigo right here

About JP McLean

Author of The Gift Legacy, a contemporary thriller with a twist of fantasy that will leave you believing the impossible and wary of the night sky…
This entry was posted in Book Series, Christmas, Editing, Gratitude, On Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to Christmas and Odds & Sods

  1. Inese Poga Art Gallery says:

    Well, that’s how any book goes through many stages. I used to work in scientific publishing house as a proofreader at first and later as an editor, that was obviously in Latvia, because Latvian is my native language and I’m very good at it, even though, I can speak fluently German, Russian and English and have MA degree in German linguistics, as well, nothing replaces the native. Do you sometimes experience such feelings as getting tired of one and the same material after it has been reviewed and edited for numerous times? We used to have there a signal exemplar, and the biggest stress was to discover some error when everything was done. I am envious because you are doing this all and you’re writing good books and stories, however, this is such a good envy, more like a pleasure that somebody is doing great. I used to write and publish poetry, essays, I love philosophy and such stuff, but it doesn’t work being so far from Latvia, and my English will never reach the native level, I mean, for writing, one needs way more than simply language. I’ve been editor for so many scientific and medical texts in English, as well (but that was strictly medical language and terms) that I have decided to only get involved in some medical copy writing or some research and data analysis. No more editing.
    See, with such novels as you write, it’s completely different. It’s such a pleasure to go through page after page (during the first editing), and try to figure out how the person who wrote this was feeling. Well, I always enjoy reading your stuff, excerpts, but I should get a real book since I cannot read lovely writing and interesting novel online, on laptop, ipad or computer. I hate that. I need to feel the real pages and I love closing the last page and then I would sit for a while and think about all this. I am reading fast, I taught myself when I was about 12, to read diagonally and so that I still can remember everything I read 40 years ago.
    So, yes, I will get some of your books, or possible the new one if it is the first part of a new set, and read slowly and savoring every paragraph and sentence.
    Have a very merry Christmas! You’ve been such a nice person to exchange some thoughts with, and finally your writing was always worth reading. Happy holiday season! Sorry for this long comment!

    Liked by 1 person

    • JP McLean says:

      I love your comments, long or not! And I, too, enjoy our thoughtful exchanges. To answer your question, sometimes after re-reading the material for the umpteenth time, I feel like I need to wash my eyes out. It’s very difficult to find all the typos that sneak into a manuscript, and I can’t do it alone. I feel very fortunate to have found the editors and beta readers that I have – they do a fantastic job of spotting problems early on.

      A number of libraries here in Canada carry the books – it might be worthwhile to inquire at your own local library. Though I know most libraries are strapped for funds these days, you never know when one may have the funds to order it in for you! Have a lovely holiday, Inese. Cheers from me…


  2. Thank you for being so thorough and professional in your writing and publishing, J.P.! Now I want to hold those books in my hands and read them all the more, knowing the care you’ve taken for the sake of your readers. And would that ALL authors were so thorough and professional … I look forward to receiving your books when I return to Canada in the spring, and you know who to ask if you find the eBook formatting task too daunting. Always happy to help with connections!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Diana Stevan says:

    I appreciate your thoughts on how your book writing and publishing are going. Having discovered this whole business firsthand, I have nothing but admiration for your work and your generosity of spirit. I’m looking forward to seeing Book #4 come out. What an accomplishment! To write a series is no small feat. Wishing you the best Jo-Anne with this book and the boxed set. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sally Rae says:

    Although the lengthy process you describe sounds like a daunting task, you obviously enjoy it! Your professional approach is admirable and reflects in how your writing has improved and grown. How you accomplish all this and still find ‘free time’ so close to Christmas is a miracle indeed!
    Wishing you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

    Liked by 1 person

    • JP McLean says:

      Thank you, Sally. I’m as surprised as you to find time on my hands – guess I didn’t need to cut out the Christmas baking after all. All the best to you and yours this Christmas and a happy, healthy 2015!


  5. bgbowers says:

    Wonderful news, JP. The Jackson giveaway story is a great idea too. Happy holidays and happy writing to you! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  6. cindy temple says:

    Hi Joe, I can.t wait to read your next book! Hope you guys have a wonderful Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Year. XOXO

    Liked by 1 person

  7. olganm says:

    Wow, you’ve been very busy. I’m sure everything will work out wonderfully. Keep me posted. As you know I like to share new books with the readers of my blog…And have a lovely holiday season!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. terzahcain says:

    Thanks for the insider view of your process! Great intel for newbies to the biz and the craft. I’m looking forward to putting the cart before the horse more than once starting in two weeks. I’ll enjoy seeking guidance and ideas from your blog, as usual.


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