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The Living Room
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    • michelle

      Living Room Etiquette   07/25/17

      Welcome to my living room on the internet.   Let me talk a little bit about the history of my home on the internet. I started out blogging on LiveJournal, which is a blogging community. And I talked about publishing and process, but in a fairly general way.   And that worked for a number of years.   What I almost never talked about was my books. But over time, people found my LJ, and they wanted to talk about my books, and I felt a little self-conscious talking about my books on LiveJournal, where the community was more general and more social, and talking about my books felt a little conspicuously like shouting: Me Me Me!   So: I started my author web-site. I posted sample chapters. I talked--when I had any news--about my books. I didn't post often, because I didn't want to drive people who came to the web-site purely for news or information away.   And that seemed to work.   But a funny thing happened. I'm not, and have never been, Robert Jordan, George Martin or Patrick Rothfuss in terms of my reach. I don't have the kind of buzz they generate, and I'm fine with that. I'm not Misty Lackey or Melanie Rawn, either.   I write my books. I try not to say too much about them, because some people hate spoilers. I try not to complain too much about the process, because every job anywhere is difficult sometimes. But… I can't really talk about my books as if I were a reader, because I can't ever approach them as a reader would for the first time. Or even the twentieth.   And sometimes people want to talk about the experience of reading my books. But given my general invisibility on fantasy reader radars, they haven't found many places in which they can do that.   A few years ago, my readers began to talk to each other - on my web-site, because they found people who were also interested in talking about my books there. On a release-day post about the latest novel. This made some readers unhappy because of course discussing the books meant spoilers. I then made a separate SPOILER thread, which people could easily avoid.   That worked, and I made a spoiler thread for almost every subsequent book.   So readers who wanted to discuss the book with other readers spoke to each other on the spoiler threads. I stay out of the spoiler threads. I stay out of the discussions about my books. And I've been able to do that because, while people don't always agree, they don't descend into acrimony and flames.   But the spoiler thread for Cast in Peril was 369 comments long. And that's a lot of comments, and possibly a long load time.   And I thought: maybe it's time to try forums.   I wouldn't have considered forums at all if the spoiler threads had descended into invective and angry ranting; they never have. The people who post and discuss on them have been helpful and reasonable, even when they don't agree with each other.   And what I want out of forums is for that to continue. I don't expect my forums to be crowded; I don't expect that they'll need to be moderated or policed, because of the history of the readers who have posted on my web-site.   But forums in general have rules and policies, and it's best to be clear about those up front, in case of future need. So.   The Living Room rules:   1. Since it's my Living Room, there's a strong possibility that children and grandmothers will stroll past or stop in, since both frequent my house. So I'd ask you to keep that in mind when it comes to profanity. Swear as much as I do.   2. Door to door salesmen frequently interrupt social gatherings, and they're not there to join the discussion. So: don't be that person. This isn't a tupperware party, and I don't want anyone to attempt to sell things to my visitors. If you notice that someone is advertising cheap watches or winning lottery numbers or any variant thereof, report it - and ignore it. It'll be cleaned up and swept out the door.   3. No flaming. Which is to say: no personal attacks or insults. I don't expect this will be a problem because it hasn't been - and I'd really like that to continue. Also, and this is a personal thing: don't accuse someone of trolling just because they disagree with you. Sometimes people disagree; they're not doing it to enrage or derail.   4. Things NOT to discuss on these forums: Real-world religions (any). Real-world politics (any). Explicit sexuality (because: children & grandmothers. And, to be fair, me). There are many other places to discuss any of these things - and I ask that you discuss them there. Here is not the place. This is possibly the only thing I'll be draconian about.   If, in the opinion of the management, you break these rules, we'll probably ask you to sit out the topic. If you break these rules more than once, we may ask you to sit out the week. If you can't communicate without breaking these rules, this is not the forum for you; there are lots of forums on the internet that will be more to your liking.   Also: I believe that readers should be able to discuss what they want to discuss, even if what they want to discuss is how a particular book I've written didn't work for them. For obvious reasons, I would like to personally avoid those discussions because I don't want to be a damper, and because it's not possible for me to be consistently objective about my own work. It's not entirely possible to avoid these discussions on the web-site; on the forums it will be. I've asked Tchula Ripton to moderate, as she's been the list-mom on the Yahoo West list for a number of years.   So on those parts of the forum where the discussions are about my works, she wears the big hat where necessary, because I'm not there.   As for the forums: any member can create topics, and any member can read any forum and reply there. If, for instance, you want to get people's opinions on ebook readers, you can start a post in the “Random†category, and ask.


  1. Michelle’s Books

    1. Michelle Sagara

      Works by Michelle Sagara, currently the Elantra series and The Queen of the Dead

    2. Michelle West

      A place to discuss Michelle West's novels, which are currently all set in one universe.

  2. Everything Else

    1. Things for & from Michelle

      questions, messages, etc.

    2. Introduce yourself

      This isn't a requirement. You don't have to write about yourself if you don't want to - I personally never do it on other forums. But, conversely, I do read introductions if someone's post catches my eye. So: This is the place to say a bit about yourself :)

    3. Books by other authors

      Discuss or recommend books by authors who are not Michelle.

    4. Manga

      Like books, but manga

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    • The books in order of events The hidden City City of Night House Name *the Sacred Hunt books (Hunter's Oath and Hunter's Death) overlap House Name and cover the same crucial events.    The six Sun Sword books: The Broken Crown The Uncrowned King The Shining Court Sea of Sorrows The Riven Shield The Sun Sword   Skirmish Battle Oracle  War   The Memory of Stone has 6 short stories giving extra background. There is a large temporal gap between House Name and The Sun Sword that I didn't pick up at first. Jewel is quite established when the Broken Crown starts. The alternate approach is in order as written. Sacred Hunt, Sun Sword, House Name to War.  
    • without any spoilers, just reading brief synopsis i see the series are connected   in which order would you recommend i read them?   thank you, a
    • I was reading a list of underrated sci-fi/fantasy books, and was happy to discover The Hidden City was on the list. I thought I'd share   http://www.unboundworlds.com/2017/09/26-underrated-sci-fi-fantasy-gems-shouldnt-miss/?ref=PRH6F3D45E1F3&aid=randohouseinc10373-20&linkid=PRH6F3D45E1F3
    • Dear Mrs.Sagara-West, I'm writing you seeking advise (not help!). I'm an aspiring novelist and like all authors before me, I've run headlong into the wall. I of course am referring to the publisher/literary agent wall. I don't know of the publishing houses which are the exception to the rule, but from what I know, all houses aren't interested in unsolicited proposals sans literary agent. Further, as near as I can tell, Canada has less than forty literary agents, and of them, there are less than six who are interested in representing my genre of fantasy. (somewhere between children's, and young adult. Like Harry Potter?) I've been dedicating my free time to writing a novel, the pilot to a (hopefully) series. I'm not sure where it fits categorically readership-wise, but it is indisputably a fantasy series. And now that I've half finished my novel I decided to begin querying agencies. Not to my surprise, I've been buffeted with rejections. I was a student of animation and concept art, so I don't have a portfolio for literature. I feel that having no prior publications in any form is by and far to my detriment, but at thirty years of age with new aspirations of becoming a career novelist, time isn't the luxury it used to be. I've used the available resources to find the literary agents, but I'm not sure how to properly approach them. (I've tried American agents as well). I'm asking wholeheartedly for advise on the best way to do so. I know it's asking for a lot, but I'm determined to use any means available if it means I can one day hold my own words, in print, in my hands. Sincerest regards, and thanks,
    • Well, it WAS up, and unlike the blog link it was for the first 3 chapters, not just the first chapter.   But now they've taken it down... which is really frustrating coz I've been using those 3 chapters as my 'fix' in these hard-done-by, downtrodden, the-world-is-a-cesspool, pre-book-release times of hardship.   Add to that instead of having a January release date the harlequin site now says the release is 2/2018.   WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY?   {sobs inconsolably}
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