Month: April 2015

My Book Launch “Week”

Well, that was a rush.

No, not just a surge of adrenaline, although I had a few of those too. I mean I was busy, much busier than I’d expected.

CLASH OF EAGLES made its debut on schedule, on Tuesday March 17th, and now I’m a published author. Well, okay, I’ve been a published author for two decades in short fiction, but I’m here to tell you that having a novel out from a major publishing house feels completely different. And there was champagne, and celebrations and much rejoicing, and my friends near and far were kind and supportive and congratulatory, and even people I didn’t know went out of their way to contact me to say nice things. Many people sent me pictures of themselves in bookstores holding copies of CLASH, which was quite delightful.

And then there was the work. I knew beforehand that I should expect to work pretty hard, before, during and after. Blog tours are all the thing now, and I was certainly willing to do everything I could to help Del Rey to promote CLASH and send it out into the big wide world. I knew that would mean guest blogs on other people’s sites, interviews, podcasts, and so on, and that in between all those I’d be expected to keep up on social media. I also knew that in my parallel world it would be a busy time at the day job; Murphy’s Law had worked splendidly, and I had a major proposal due on… Monday March 16th. But I’m a pretty organized chap, and I figured I could do all that and, in between the cracks, still be able to blog here regularly about the experience, kinda summarizing what was going on and how I was feeling about it all…

Well, I did most of it. I did. I’d told my group at work that I -really- wanted to submit the proposal early, and we all pulled together, and after three months of work I did indeed press the button on Thursday March 12th to send our finely-honed document on its way into the belly of the beast. A minor miracle (did I mention I love my team?) that freed up a lot of time at the weekend to work on those guest blogs.

The guest blogs were harder than I thought. I’m not a natural blogger. If you’ve even read this far, you already know that. I write blogs much more slowly than I write fiction. I can basically only do it by pretending that I’m writing a long Facebook post.

I did okay. Adjacent to this blog post you’ll find an entry that summarizes all my guest posts for March,  and provides handy-dandy links.

I did not, however, manage to blog here about the experience while it was happening, because when it came down to it, there was a limit to how long I could look at a computer screen every day.

So I’ll be brief: I had a GREAT time during Book Launch Week Month. Didn’t get sick, which was my big fear, but I am (still!) very tired. I’m both happy and sad that things are calming down a bit now, although I do have two live (not written) interviews coming up in the next few days and I’m still wondering what to do about that one – only one – blog post I kinda promised to do and then dropped on the floor. On the other hand, amidst all of this activity I also put together a detailed outline for Book Three of the trilogy, and discussed it with my editor at Del Rey, Mike Braff. And now I’m ready to get going on that. Real Soon Now.

More to come about all this. Stay tuned.

March Guest Blogs – A List

In which I provide links to the ten guest blogs and interviews I did on Other People’s Sites in March, including Paste Magazine, Tor.com, Suvudu, SFFWorld, MaryRobinetteKowal.com, Eating Authors, The Qwillery, and 2 Book Lovers. Wow. March was quite a month.

3/15: On 2 Book Lovers Reviews, In honor of the Ides of March, I and three other writers debate whether there’s better fodder for writing Roman fiction before or after Julius Caesar crossed the Rubicon:

http://www.2bookloversreviews.com/ides-of-march-2015.html

3/16: Eating Authors: As part of his long-running series about writers and food, I describe my most memorable meal to Lawrence Schoen:

http://www.lawrencemschoen.com/plugs/eating-authors-alan-smale/

3/17: Dear Readers: On Del Rey’s Suvudu.com site I talk about my thoughts on the eve of Book Launch Day:

http://suvudu.com/2015/03/dear-readers-a-letter-from-alan-smale.html

3/17: My Favorite Bit: On Mary Robinette Kowal’s site, I describe my favorite bit in CLASH OF EAGLES (contains mild spoilers):

http://maryrobinettekowal.com/journal/my-favorite-bit-alan-smale-talks-about-clash-of-eagles/

3/17: SFFWORLD interviews me about my hero Gaius Marcellinus, research, alternate history in general, and writing this book in particular:

http://www.sffworld.com/2015/03/alan-smale-interview/

3/17: Decline and Rise Part One: In CLASH OF EAGLES the Roman Empire never fell. How? Why? In a guest essay on Suvudu.com, I argue that the Decline and Fall was by no means inevitable…

http://sf-fantasy.suvudu.com/2015/03/guest-essayalan-smale-author-clash-of-eagles.html

3/20: Decline and Rise Part Two: The second part of my essay on why the western Roman Empire did not need to fall:

http://suvudu.com/2015/03/guest-essay-alan-smale-author-clash-of-eagles-part-two-of-two.html

3/20: I am interviewed on The Qwillery as part of the 2015 Debut Author Challenge:

http://qwillery.blogspot.com/2015/03/interview-with-alan-smale-author-of.html

3/25: Five Books that Twist History till it Begs for Mercy on Tor.com:

http://www.tor.com/blogs/2015/03/five-books-that-twist-history-until-it-begs-for-mercy

3/31: Paste Magazine: Another interview? With moi

http://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2015/03/alan-smale-imagines-a-roman-invasion-of-north-amer.html

In closing, Paste Magazine was also nice enough to select CLASH as one of its “Ten of the Best New Books in March”. I confess I never in my life imagined my name would ever appear on a list that also included Kazuo Ishiguro and T.C. Boyle. That can’t be right…

http://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2015/03/10-of-the-best-new-books-in-march.html