My Empire for Ashes will not be the first Shayara book.
A note about the structure of the series: There's a three-book main arc. And there are three supplemental books, covering events that happened before the main story or are happening during the main story, but from a different perspective. When I was going to release this whole thing on the interwebs, I was going to release things simultaneously, as follows:
Book One/My Empire for Ashes Book Two/Jessa & Fenris's story Book Three/Mask and Marionette
(Why do most of these not have names? This was supposed to be a comic book, then it was a web serial; Shayara is name enough for that.)
My Empire for Ashes was the first one Drollerie acquired, so it was going to be the first one out - but it's not the ideal intro to the world. Mostly because it is very focused on the Telenias and Katrina, and not on the world, and as white cisgender heterosexual monogamous characters, they're not totally representative. MEfA was originally intended as a flashback novella, and it just plain works better that way.
And the main story works better when it starts with Kieran going into a Very Important Meeting.
So we're doing that!
Which is a big relief. Something in me was aware that this wasn't quite right. Solved!
I have a lot of writing to do. (I suspect that I will be saying that forever.) And Wiscon has lit a fire under my ass regarding it, because I have figured out a bunch of really cool stuff I can do with the story, and I am excited again. So there.
"We write to discover what we believe." ~~Jonathan Carroll
"...part of you pours out of me in these lines from time to time." ~~"Case of You", Joni Mitchell
"There is a crack in everything; that's how the light gets in." ~~"Anthem", Leonard Cohen
"If you wanna be immortal, you gotta have something to trade in." ~~"Anything", Foetus
"This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; the being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap; the being a force of Nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy." ~~George Bernard Shaw
"The real secret of magic is that the world is made of words, and that if you know the words that the world is made of you can make of it whatever you wish." ~~Terence McKenna
"When we die, we will turn into songs, and we will hear each other and remember each other." ~~Rob Sheffield
"I have a sickness in the brain. I'm allowed to make no sense to you puny mortals with your fully operational head-meat." ~~Spider Jerusalem
"Sometimes you crash. Sometimes, the fall kills you. And sometimes... sometimes, you fly." ~~Neil Gaiman
"Reputation is what other people know about you. Honor is what you know about yourself." ~~Lois McMaster Bujold
"Nobody realizes that some people expend tremendous energy merely to be normal." ~~Albert Camus
"Being able to speak the unspeakable is very powerful. If we can hear another person express where they get stuck, or lost, or repeat a negative pattern, it builds a bridge." ~~SARK
"Myths and legends die hard in America." ~~Hunter S. Thompson
"Don't undertake a project unless it is manifestly important and nearly impossible." ~~Edwin Land
"Having faced the fire of your initiation and survived its heat, you can now serve others in a whole new way. By being a living testimony to life transformed, you carry in your cells a sacred knowledge, and in your mind and heart a sacred fire. It's not the fire of youth but the fire of Prometheus, who emerged with the light that would light the world. It's a light that you only could have gotten from having faced some version of your personal hell, and now you are inoculated to the fires which rage around us. Sometimes it is fire that puts out fire, and such is the fire that now burns in you. This is not the fire of your destruction but of your victory. It is the fire of the middle years." ~~Marianne Williamson
"Considering how common illness is, how tremendous the spiritual change it brings, how astonishing, when the lights of health go down, the undiscovered countries that are then disclosed…what ancient and obdurate oaks are uprooted in us by the act of sickness…it becomes strange indeed that illness has not taken its place with love and battle and jealously among the prime themes of literature." ~~Virginia Woolf
"The Universe puts us in places were we can learn. They are never easy places, but they are right. Wherever we are is the right place, at the right time. The pain that sometimes comes is part of the process of constantly being born."
"I will tell you a great secret, Captain, perhaps the greatest secret of all time: The molecules of your body are the same molecules that make up this station, and the nebula outside - that burn inside the stars themselves. We are star-stuff. We are the Universe made manifest, trying to figure itself out. And, as we have both learned, sometimes the Universe requires a change of perspective." ~~Delenn, Babylon 5
"Light Leak", by SJ Tucker
Swirling stars into my skin With a leaky stolen pen Stories end, pull kenning in Let the light leak in I finally let the light leak in
I am kenning all I can She and I, me and my mind, Writing hard for the one true thing That lets you let me in Beguiling what must to gain the trust of the minutemen I am worth investing in and I never stop spinning.
Kenning yarns out of my skin With a leaky borrowed pen Swirling stars and stories in Will you let the light leak in?