|The front of the Defiant trading cards|
There’s something bittersweet about finishing book you really love. If the story was emotional, you feel drained, raw around the edges. You’re sad that it’s over, and yet you’re also basking in the joy that the story brought you.
I think authors experience their own version of this when a book they loved and worked so hard on finally hits bookstore shelves. I know that last Tuesday when Defiant came out, a part of me just wanted to cry. The wait for Connor’s book had been so long. There was a time when I didn’t think I’d ever be able to write it. And then, last Tuesday, it was out.
The breathless emails I’ve gotten, the raving reviews, the sweet messages you’ve sent have also choked me up. Knowing that something I’ve written affected you so deeply is very touching for me. Not everyone loved it, but most of you have really enjoyed it. And, well, you can’t please everyone all the time.
I thought I’d answer some frequently asked questions about the book and the series. (Contains spoilers! Ye be warned!)
1. Am I going to write Joseph’s story? Yes, absolutely. I can’t say when it will be out, but I will write it. He is a brother, even if he isn’t a MacKinnon, and he deserves his own happy ending.
2. Am I going to write Lord William’s story? How could I not? I adore him, even if he is a selfish, manipulative jerk. Now that he has experienced absolutely powerlessness, true suffering, and fear, he is going to be a changed man. No, he won’t be courteous, kind and forgiving. But he will be in a position where I can put him through his own transition from anti-hero to hero. His character arc is four books long. It starts in book one and moves through to the end of his own story. But, again, I’m not sure when I’ll be writing his book.
3. How can you say goodbye to the MacKinnon brothers and to the Rangers? That was hard. It was so very hard! I sobbed! We’ll see the brothers and their families again in Joseph’s story. We might even see a Ranger or two. But the time when the Rangers were a unit and lived and fought side by side is at an end. But then all good things must end. Even Star Trek: The Next Generation ended.
4. Will I write any novellas about the brothers in the future? I hope so! They’ve lived in my head for eight long years. I don’t want to let them or Annie, Amalie and Sarah go. I think a nice MacKinnon Christmas novella or some other short story might be fun.
5. What about the MacKinnon children? I don’t know. They’re too young to fight in the American Revolution but that doesn’t mean they can't have stories. I’ll have to wait and see what the Muse has to say about it. Interestingly, the MacKinnon men are young enough that they will fight in the Revolution. I don’t know what that means, but maybe I’ll have to bring them back for some novellas set during that time.
6. What can you do to support the book? Post reviews. Share your love of the story with your friends. Mention the book in discussion groups and loops. Share the link for the trailer (your friends will thank you!). “Like” the book on Amazon.com and B&N. Word of mouth is the most important thing.
I’m saving other questions and answers for Thursday evening’s big video chat via Shindig Events. Last time there were some technical difficulties. Hopefully that will all be worked out this time. Also, there is a private discussion group on Facebook dedicated to talking about Defiant chapter by chapter. Click here to ask to join. We just started, so you haven’t missed much.
To register for the After the Epilogue live video chat, click here. The fun begins at 8 PM Eastern Time/7 Central on July 12. You’ll be sent a reminder email just before the event, which is FREE, begins. During the chat, you’ll be able to chat privately with other readers or ask me questions about the book. It’s your chance to talk about the story without worrying about spoilers. It works best if you have a camera and a mic, whether built-in or not, but you can participate by hearing what’s being said if you don’t. Five participants will win $20 Amazon gift cards IF we can figure out how to collect names and make it work. We weren’t able to give books away last time like I had planned.
And now I just want to give a heartfelt thank you to all of you who made the release week for Defiant so very special for me. I am so grateful to you for your support and your excitement. If I started a list of names of those people who contributed to the joy of this past week, it would go on forever. But I do want to mention the Street Team and thank them for their support online and in the bookstores in helping to spread word about the novel. You know who you are!
As a way of saying thanks, I would love to send a signed Defiant trading card and/or signed book plate to anyone who wants one. The cards are glossy and pretty and work nicely as bookmarks. The book plates have my signature and stick to the inside of the book, turning the copy into an autographed copy. (Ebook readers! Check out Kindlegraph to get your autographs!)
To get your signed Defiant trading card(s) or signed book plate, send a self-addressed stamped envelope to:
PO Box 1582
Longmont, CO 80502
I’ll get them in the mail. Please specify which you prefer — a trading card (up to four), a book plate or both.
So what was your favorite moment in Defiant?