January 21st 2018 Update

Hello, everyone! So, tomorrow Marin’s Codex goes live! I’m excited for the release, not the least because this makes five novels that I’ve released in barely over a year. That’s completely overwhelming to me, and thank you, those of you who’ve been following me for this long.

I’ve already commissioned the audiobook of Marin’s Codex from Sarah Goer, the same narrator who did Born a Queen, and we expect to have it done and (Audible permitting) live by mid-to-late March. With the range of voices she managed for Born a Queen, I admit to being extremely excited to hear how she portrays the characters of the book.

Finally, on to projects beyond Marin’s Codex. This past week I was somewhat delayed by my wife coming down ill, and I dearly hope I don’t get the same head cold she got, but I started on Down with the Queen, book 2 of the Lilith’s Shadow series. I’m a bit over 5,000 words into the novel now, and this book is going to be insane, at least for me. I’ve commissioned artwork for it, and if you felt that parts of Born a Queen were too similar to Ancient Dreams, believe me, I’m trying to change that. Lilith isn’t going to sit back and let the problems come to her, not once the story starts to get going.

That being said, the entire plot is still subject to changes. If there are particular characters that were in Born a Queen who you’d like to see more of, let me know. I’m not going to guarantee they’ll show up, but if I have a role that they’d fit into, I’ll seriously consider it.

10 thoughts on “January 21st 2018 Update

  1. There needs to be more of “Mom”, but then I’d very much be surprised if she didn’t play a role ;)

    Otherwise I’ll just say that instead of many new characters the protagonists introduced in book 1 desperately (imagine a bunch of exclamation marks here. And then some more) more depth, so I’d rather you focus on that than the villains or new ones, but that’s maybe just me ;)


  2. I really liked Marin’s Codex. It was better than I expected, mostly due to the fact that I didn’t know what I should expect. There was so little about Marins life in the Ancient Dreams Trilogy.

    I was a tiny bit disappoint as a reached the epilogue. I was so deep in the story that I wished there was more about how Emmonel (or how her name is wirtten, sorry) would reach her goal of revenge. But the book was already long enaugh and other reasons. I fully understand why it couldn’t happen in this book. Maybe a novella or somethin could happen though.

    At the very end Emmonel hints at more plans she has that Fate has no Idea about that concern Marin/Sistina. Now I am wondering if you added that just becouse it fits with Emmonels character or if this is a hint to us readers for a possible story?

    You once wrote in one of your posts that you intended to wirte three stories that would take place before the Godsrage. Marin’s Codex is of course one of them. If I remember correctly the second one was supposed to be about the original Sistina. And the third story I don’t remember.
    I would really like to read some story about how the Godsreage started out of both tthe perspective of the Gods and the mortals. It would be interesting what drove the Gods to such a war.

    Thanks for Marin’s Codex.


  3. So first off, I’m glad you enjoyed the book! Marin’s Codex was incredible to me, because what was intended as a relatively short story turned into something so much more than that. I felt a little bad about cutting off the story where I did, but in the end… the story was about Emonael and Marin’s relationship, not so much about the aftermath. A short story about it might be possible, but it’d be tough to write because I know about how she’d deal with the enemies, and it wouldn’t necessarily be a fun story to read.

    As to Emonael’s last words… yes, she has plans. It’s just who she is, and she’s the tiniest bit obsessive… And I am so incredibly tempted to write the story it references, which would be a short story/novella most likely.

    Now, the last story I was going to write for Before the Godsrage was tentatively named The Falling Shadows. It was going to be from the perspective of Kassandra Sunseeker, the vampire, and was going to relay the last year or hours of the original Kingdom of Everium. The reason I didn’t write it was for three reasons. First, Marin’s Codex was enormously longer than I anticipated, which put me behind the schedule I originally had in mind. Second, putting it after Into the Eternal Wood would’ve had the book end on a down note, which I feel would’ve been a mistake. Last, Kassandra just didn’t have the spark of inspiration driving me to write the story. Don’t get me wrong, I feel the story would be good, and could show just what happened during the Godsrage, but I wasn’t in the proper headspace to write it.

    Again, glad you liked the book, and I DO have plans to come back to this universe again. It’s just going to take some time, with my other projects that I have on my plate.


  4. Hi Ben,

    I just had the opportunity to finish reading Marin’s Codex, and I have to say, it was a remarkable work. It filled in a lot of the backstory for Ancient Dreams, and gave a muchmore thorough understanding of how magic (or at least some types of it) works in the story’s world. Perhaps all the more so because of how the storyline takes place during what’s clearly a revolution (or more precisely, two of them) in magic education.

    Truthfully, the toughest part now is writing my review. The book inspired a lot of thoughts for me, and condensing all of it into a review that isn’t massive is interesting. Looking back, I’ve noticed that my reviews for all of your books have tended to be longer than normal.

    I’ll chalk that up to the quality of the finished books. You’ve repeatedly created detailed worlds without getting bogged down in massive info-dumps that aren’t quite relevant to the surrounding scene(s), excessive/useless adjectives, or any of the other common mistakes that can slow a novel’s pacing down. Thinking about it, that strikes me as a consequence of a really aggressive, well-polished editing process.

    I’m looking forward to seeing what comes next.


  5. Hello, Tom!

    I’m glad that you enjoyed the book! Despite at least one of my early readers saying that he considered it my best work to date, there’s always that part of me that wonders if it’s going to come across well, so it’s a relief when people enjoy the book. You’re definitely right about the information it fills in, which was part of the reason I was writing it to begin with, though the characters were far more important to me when writing it.

    I hear you on the review. Reviews are… tough. Because in my opinion, reviews are for fellow readers, and I feel it’s best to be honest, give them some idea of what to expect, without spoiling the book. And that is incredibly difficult.

    Now, on to the comment you mentioned about the editing and such. Odd as it may seem, I usually add information during the editing passes. When writing Ancient Ruins originally, I started to over-describe things, then stopped to think about it. At the time I realized that when I read books, I hated over-description in most cases. So I decided to keep that in mind when writing my books. If it isn’t relevant, I don’t bother with it. One of my friends says I have an odd, finely tuned sense for the structure and flow of a story, which I think was developed by years of reading novels.

    Anyway, back to working on Down with the Queen! I’m making lots of progress already.


  6. Hi, just finished Marin’s Codex and enjoyed it a lot. After reading Marin’s Codex though the reunion between Sistina and Emonael in Halls of Power seemed a bit bland considering the relationship they had in the prequel, but is understandable since that version of Emonael was only a projection.
    Also I’m kinda wishing Marin’s Codex came out before Ancient ruins because the revelation of Sistina’s previous identity of Marin would have been one hell of a surprise. Either way I loved this book.


  7. Alas, when I started writing Ancient Ruins, Sistina’s full history wasn’t even a glimmer of a possibility in my mind. That didn’t come until I wrote about the library under the mountain. I can understand why you’d feel that way, though.
    As for Emonael and Sistina’s reunion… Emonael is weird, and she knows that the time isn’t right yet. She’s patient, and her motivations are weird.
    Glad you loved the book, though!


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