How The Stones Of Power Came To Be [Guest Post by M.D. Grimm]August 12, 2019
Good day to you! Thank you so much for joining me! I want to thank Matt Doyle for hosting me today. I am here to promote not only my latest release “Lapis Lazuli: Forgotten and Remembered (The Stones of Power #7)” but “The Stones of Power” series in general. I’m trying to get some love and attention for this series I am truly proud of and hope to finish in the near future.
To do that I thought I would share some of the journey that this sturdy series has made, starting with its inception. Hold on folks, it might get a little bumpy.
So let’s take the way-back machine to 2011. I just graduated college and was unemployed at the time, which made it easy to spent my time writing and reading. I wrote the first draft of “Ruby: Lost and Found (SoP #1)” and had a beta look it over. They had some good suggestions, and I beefed it up considerably and made multiple drafts trying to get it just right. I already had a plan that I wanted 13 books and only a vague idea what the rest would be about. I chose to have each book feature a gemstone of power because the now defunct publisher, Torquere Press, was still owned by its founders and still going strong, and they had a house line that dealt with birthstones. I thought it would be fun to submit to that line for the entire series. However, I didn’t want to only use the common birthstones, so I researched what the birthstones used to be for a few of the months. However, since “Ruby” was novel length, Torquere ended up moving it under their High Ball line and since I got a print copy, I wasn’t complaining. It is now 2012. It sold fairly well and gave me the confidence to pursue the rest of the series. I believe this was my third book ever published.
I then found a full time job that cut into my writing time but I made it work. I focused on the series since, apparently, stand-alone books just aren’t my thing. It’s a struggle to tell a full story in one book and not make it a sweeping epic. I managed to publish books #2 and #3 before I was alerted that my books weren’t selling so well so TP probably won’t publish them anymore. I thought fine, okay, then I will self-publish. I bought a cover to get ready for that undertaking. However, I think I must have contacted them again to be sure they didn’t want any more books in this series (details escape me at the moment), and then they said they’d take #4. So I got to use the cover I bought and they published it. Book #5 was the last one published by them. I think by then the company had changed hands and there was inner turmoil and a bunch of shadiness behind-the-scenes. By this time I had books 1-4 in ebook and print and book 5 in print only. I think I submitted #6 but soon after that, things imploded and I asked for my rights back. I was able to purchase the original cover art since I adored every piece, and I worked with the cover artist directly for book #6 and finished that transaction.
Then I made the big decision to self-publish the series. I offered the series to a few publishers, but many don’t like re-publishing a single book let alone a half-done series. So I researched how-tos like crazy and from February to July 2017 I republished books #1-5, and then finally released #6 in July. It was exhausting work since I not only had to read through and modify anything I missed the first go-around, I had to find editors to look over my work and then reformat everything. It was a big job that I somehow managed to finish. And then I was burnt out on the series. I tried to work on book #7 that December during my two-week vacation but the first draft didn’t work. So I waited and worked on other things. A whole year went by and I rewrote #7 from page one. It felt better. Then I spent months reading it over and finding an editor and finding a cover artist and… yeah.
So, needless to say, this series has been up, down, and all around. Much like my characters….
Now I present the entire tried and true series, so far, to you. I have every intention of finishing the darn thing and sighing in relief when book #13 is up for preorder.
Ever had a project you feel like you will never make progress on or finish, and then you look behind and suddenly realize you’ve accomplished more than you thought? Yeah. That.
I know fantasy isn’t everyone’s thing and that’s completely okay. But I want people to give this series a chance – it has a lot to offer. Each book is truly driven by the characters, Morgorth and Aishe, and their relationship. I strive to vary the plots and settings and to keep the adventure hopping and never let it stagnate. Each book layers on the previous ones yet can stand on their own merit—though I fully endorse reading them in order. Fantasy is, of course, a big part of the story since Morgorth is a mage but I’m all about characters and relationships and how we relate to each other, and the conflict and harmony we can create. My characters are flawed and conflicted but also courageous and loving. I hope you check them out!
I am currently working on the second book to my “Saga of the Bold People” and finishing up a (low) fantasy trilogy, as well as outlining for a couple of other future projects. So many WIPs, so little time!
Thank you so much for joining me and may dragons guard your dreams!