the Author

Release Day: The Emperor’s Wolves

Posted in Mira, Severn, Books.

Today is release day for The Emper­or’s Wolves

As of today, the book should be avail­able in print, audio and ebook.

I love the cover. I love one small element in the print version – not the title page, but the blank page that follows a title page – it’s not entirely blank.

Three years ago, give or take a few months, I was one of the authors featured at the pixel project. One of the things I offered to encourage dona­tion was a short story prompt. I was willing to write about either a familiar char­acter, or a single word prompt — like, say, Dragon. The person who donated could choose.

The person chose Severn. So I sat down to write a short story. Or rather, a novella. If I mirac­u­lously ended up with a short story, I’d be fine, but I didn’t really think that was likely; I thought I’d end up with a novella.

The donor had to wait. She waited with angelic patience until I had both time and inspi­ra­tion between all the other dead­lines, and I finally sat down, with a clear end-goal in mind, and began to write.

…and reached Chapter Seven, at the end of which it was pretty clear that I had pushed the bounds of novella. I had a choice: I could try to cut it back and tie it up, or I could continue to write toward the end I hadn’t reached yet. Which meant I had a novel. Which meant I couldn’t just try to fit it into the writing schedule. And it also meant that I had to submit it to Mira, home of the Cast novels, because of the option clause. When I first started writing for Luna, the one thing – the only thing – that was consid­ered neces­sary was: female protagonist.

Severn is not a female protag­o­nist. So I assumed that the book would be declined, not on the basis that it was terrible, but on the basis that it didn’t meet the criterion.

The crite­rion, however, had disap­peared between the first Cast novel and now, and Mira did want the Severn novel. (Once I finished it, I sent it to the donor, so she saw the submis­sion version, which is a bit different, espe­cially at the begin­ning). Which meant, years after I’d committed to write a short story about Severn, I had finally fulfilled that dona­tion pledge. T_T. And honestly, she was great about the time it took and the fact that it was getting farther and farther away from the charity drive. I was less fine because it was an oblig­a­tion I couldn’t fulfill immediately.

And now, the book is real, it is done, and I’m excited to be able to send it off into the world!

If you’ve read The Emper­or’s Wolves already, I ask you not to post spoilers on this page – I will start a spoiler thread post that readers can entirely avoid until they’ve read the book later.



41 Responses to Release Day: The Emperor’s Wolves

  1. NixLee says:

    Be still, my heart!
    Every­thing to do with Severn makes my soul sing. Thank you for giving him a chance to have his story told.

  2. KW McCabe says:

    I never knew about this dona­tion oppor­tu­nity for a short story 😭 Is it too late to do one for Night­shade? Lol

  3. michelle says:

    @KW McCabe: Three years too late — but honestly, the anxiety of the outstanding oblig­a­tion — which was entirely on my end, because the donor was wonderful about it — was stressful enough I would think a hundred times before trying it again =/

  4. Zia says:

    I remember the pixel project auction and the outcome :) I’m still grateful for your partic­i­pa­tion, although I am sorry it caused you any stress.

    I confess I am not (nor is it likely I will ever be) a fan of Severn. Even now, I still dislike him (sorry!) I am, however, a fan of this novel. I really, really enjoyed it and I am glad Mira picked it up. 

    Thank you, as always, for creating another book I loved. I’d like to say more, but words seem to be infu­ri­at­ingly impos­sible to string together coher­ently this morning so thank you again for writing this novel.

  5. cricqket says:

    I’m sorry this stressed you out so much, but I’m very glad you did it. I saw the email this morning that you had a new book out (and went over to Goodreads to put it on my want-to-read shelf with my jaw hanging open because I didn’t realize this was coming out only to find that it was already on there from 2 years ago!). I remem­bered reading some­thing some­place about you writing a short story about Severn and antic­i­pating it. 

    Love Trian­gles frequently frus­trate me, and this is one of the longest ones ever, but it’s also one I wouldn’t trade for not having because I wouldn’t then have the “Cast” series. 

    I really hope we get those stim­ulus checks soon, because I’ve already used up all my audible credits, and now this is at the top of my “must get this book now” list. 

    Thanks for you writing, as always.

  6. michelle says:

    @Zia: <3

    @cricqket: Nothing about the charity stressed me out *except* the knowl­edge that I was taking So. Darn. Long. It wasn’t the writing, it was the “I owe someone this it is NOT DONE YET T_T. Every­thing else, I enjoyed :)

  7. Michelle: Don’t know much about it, but the site Author­graph allows authors to digi­tally sign e‑books. Don’t want to add to your stress level either!!



  8. Joey says:

    Congrat­u­la­tions! And, hey! The Pixel Project inter­view is still available! 


  9. Grace says:

    I looked for it, but it isn’t showing up on Barnes & Noble.

  10. Birgit says:

    Sadly, B&N is having tech­nical issues and you cannot buy or down­load your pre-ordered copy (grrrrrrrr). They don’t have a ETA for fixing it yet.

  11. cricqket says:

    I under­stood that it was the oblig­a­tion that stressed you out. I’m still very glad you did it. :)

  12. Heather says:

    Will there be a Book 2?

  13. michelle says:

    @Grace & Birgit: I’m so, so sorry =/. While I don’t view my own books as a reader – I’d love to be able to do that, but it takes about six years – I would be soooo upset if I couldn’t get, say, RETURN OF THE THIEF. I really, really hope they fix what­ever problem they’re having soon.

  14. michelle says:

    @Heather: There will be a second book. Unfor­tu­nately, the second book will be heading to the West March and I’m desper­ately hoping that it will be a second book and not a second & third book T_T

  15. Birgit says:

    While frus­trating that the book icon is sitting there in my nook taunting me , I am enjoying re-reading Return of the Thief, which I luckily got in hard­cover :). Hope­fully B&N will get it fixed soon. Thanks for making this a “no spoilers” thread!

  16. Tchula says:

    Just got my hard copy from Amazon last night. Am loving it! Can’t wait to finish it today! :-)

  17. Cherie Gardner says:

    While I prefer Barnes and Noble, I couldn’t wait until they fixed their tech­nical issues to get this book. I used my Kindle app on my phone. :/ I LOVED this book!

  18. Vicky Johnson says:

    As with all your new books, I’m reading Wolves with a friend that I intro­duced to your work about five years ago. The reading is slower but we’re able to talk about what is going on as we read. He just asked me what the approx­i­mate age differ­ence is between Severn and Kaylin. I don’t really remember if that has been mentioned other than Severn is older.

  19. Agustine says:

    SEVERN book is finally here! Yayyyyy!!! <> I ordered the hard­copy from Bookde­pos­i­tory, n it’s going to take more or less 14 – 21 days to get here in Indonesia (based on prev expe­ri­ence; hope­fully won’t get longer this time due to corona virus); annnnndddd.… in the mean­time i got it deliv­ered in my Google Play accounts on 13 Oct, and now i’m reading it (slowly though; i don’t want to end my reading session with Severn that quick). =D

    Thank you so much, Michelle, for writing this book; i love it so much! I love Severn from the first time he showed up in Cast in Shadows. He’s the person that anchor Kaylin, and her protector, even from child­hood. And i simply love his char­acter, and patience. ».« I hope there will be more about Severn in the next Cast books; he (regret­fully) seems to be in back­ground mode in the last few books. And I don’t mind at all having a third, or even fourth books in the Wolves series; that will be AWESOME! <> I’d love to read his story as it enables me to know him more. =DD

    Have a very blessed day, stay safe, and stay healthy, Michelle! We love you to the moon and back. =D


  20. Jeanine says:

    Happy book birthday! Looking forward to getting my hard copy in the mail!

  21. Hanneke says:

    I just finished my first read-through, and wanted to say Thank you for this extra­or­di­nary book. I thor­oughly enjoyed it and look forward eagerly to learning more of Severn’s story in the future.

  22. michelle says:

    @Vicky: there’s a five year age differ­ence between them

    @Agustine: You are very welcome!

    @Tchula: thank you — I’m hoping, in a couple of weeks, to put up the orig­inal first four chapters

    @Jeanine: thank you as well :). The post here has been — for obvious reasons — slower than it used to be, but, ummm, every­thing does arrive

    @Hanneke: Thank you as well. To me, they feel like different books, and inter­nally Kaylin is … a lot more open than Severn is, when writing the two different characters.

  23. Hanneke says:

    Yes, a very different char­ac­ter’s voice makes for a different tone of the book. I like Kaylin, but Severn’s reserve and internal quiet is more restful to read, less hectic despite what’s happening, if those are the right words.
    I enjoyed his voice and view­point a lot, as well as the inter­play between new and old/familiar char­ac­ters, and the new light this shines on them.

  24. Peter Sutton says:

    Read it. Loved it. I’d be very glad if the west march edition does become books 2&3 or 2&3&4. ..or 2&3&4&5

  25. Joyce Ronquillo says:

    Very happy to know the story of Severn in the West March will be told but hoping there is not too much delay. There will be no complaints from me if it stretches into book 3 or 4. I was glad to find some age perspec­tive in this one. It is hard to keep track consid­ering how long it has been since Cast in Shadow.

  26. Wendy says:

    I agree with Peter! After all Kaylin’s first trip to the West March took two books, so really it’s only fair that Severn’s first trip to the West March gets two books as well. And according to the Cast books, if I’m remem­bering correctly, the Wolves tried to map the fiefs, so I’m sure there are stories to tell about that and the fief lords. Will we see more of Eventon as well?

    I join Agus­tine in hoping Severn will get a more promi­nent role in the next Cast books. Will we get to see some of the Barrani appearing in this book in the Cast novels? 

    Thank you for a great book. Will the next one come in a year like the Cast novels or are we looking at a longer wait? That’s the problem with great books- you want more right away!

  27. Vicki LENOIR says:

    Thank you for the wonderful world of Elantra. Severn has always intrigued me and this book is so good… tanta­lising bits of infor­ma­tion that now I hunger for book 2 (offi­cial) and 3, 4, 8 (if it ends up that far). Sending you ener­getic vibes so the writing mojo keeps flowing.

  28. Anne Pond says:

    Thank you for this. I have been a fan from Book 1 and have always been intrigued by Severn. He is such a calming char­acter (compared to Kaykin’s chaos) and I really loved this book.

  29. Agustine says:

    Michelle, I regret­fully finish reading the book much earlier that I would love to, as that means that I must end my session with my beloved Severn. But I LOVE the book. I LOVE all the char­ac­ters in it. Every single one of them. <>

    Saying more about them here will be spoilers, but I very much love how the story flows, and the multiple POV, and the tone of the book as a whole. There is 7 years interim before Severn is reunited with Kaylin, and it will be SUPER FABULOUS if Severn has his own series covering that period. <>. I sincerely hope (and crossing my fingers) that this will come true; this is just an idea, though, just to let you know that I (we?) won’t mind reading more of Severn storiess, however long that may be.

    Thank you, once again, for this awesome book, for the multi­fac­eted char­ac­ters, and for Severn. I’m sooooo looking forward for the next install­ment in the series, as well as the Cast series. =D

    Stay safe, stay healthy, and stay blessed, Michelle. We love you to the moon and back. =) 


  30. MARK KATZ says:

    Michelle, I am not sure this is the appro­priate loca­tion for this comment but I haven’t bought the new book. The Kindle price on Amazon Australia is AUD25.96. Your last Cast book was around AUD12. I checked Amazon Canada and their price is for Wolves is CAD11.99. Why is this book so expen­sive in Australia.

  31. michelle says:

    @Mark: I’ve already discussed this with my editor; it’s clearly a mistake (iBooks in Australia is charging 13.99, for example), and I think it should be corrected soon. You’re not only person from Australia who’s pointed this out — I’ve had emails from other Australians. I would *love* if an Australian launch went smoothly T_T.

  32. michelle says:

    @Mark & Australian readers: I think, though, if you flag it on Amazon as almost double the price of iBooks in Australia, *Amazon* will also push for a change from their end.

  33. Stefani Podoll says:

    I work in ship­ping. For the inter­na­tional buyers of paper books there can be an addi­tional 10 day wait from current covid times depending on the carrier and country. A prime example is instead of 10 – 14 days to Ireland, it is more like 25 days because of how they have to ship things. More things are trav­eling via boat prob­ably due to the high demand glob­ally on internet sales. When it arrives it some­times is stuck in customs, customs varies a lot. Please keep this in mind when ordering or ship­ping anything since it is holiday time. most carriers have also added extra fees to ship­ping. There are currently two extra fees. One is a Covid fee, and the other is a holiday fee. You may notice some sellers ship­ping prices go up, and this would be why. It is impor­tant to check that the carrier you want will deliver to the area you desire. Some carriers have coun­tries they will not service due to high covid numbers. 

    As to the book. It is a very good book. It gives a view into things that until now were just a fath­om­less story filler that usually ended in Severn could not talk about.

  34. Mary Allen says:

    I loved the book and was very inter­ested in the new char­ac­ters. It was nice to see Severn’s first meeting with the Tha’alani. Will there be a thread to discuss the Emper­or’s Wolves?

  35. Carol Duffy says:

    Thank you for a wonderful book! I loved every minute of it, even though Severn has never been, for me, one of the most inter­esting aspects of your wonderful world. And yet I couldn’t put it down and can’t wait for the next one and a return to the West March!

    And should you ever decide to write a story/ novella/book about Nightshade…or even just give us his back­story with the Consort at some point.… I wouldn’t be disap­pointed lol

    Again, thank you for an amazing book.

  36. michelle says:

    @Mary Ellen: Yes — I will put up a spoiler thread tomorrow (I usually try to leave a week between launch and spoiler discus­sion thread). 

    @Carol: The problem with Night­shade is the whole tone and feel of the book will be entirely different; for much of his early life, there wasn’t an Elantra. It would be much more high fantasy in feel than the current Elantra books are. (I discov­ered this when trying to find the right opening for the Severn book – I started much earlier with Ellu­vian & Emperor).

  37. Sivi says:

    I just wanted to say that I loved the book. I couldn’t put it down„ lived the insight to his though process and look forward to the next book.
    It made me want to re-read the main elantra books to see if I could see how his expe­ri­ences showed through in Kaylin’s books :)
    Thank you

  38. Joyce Ronquillo says:

    After I finished Wolves, I reread Cast in Moon­light for Kaylin’s expe­ri­ences at the same time and then just went on to reread Shadows and Court­light (so far). I last reread them in 2013 just before Cast in Flame so it’s time, I guess.

  39. Tracy Perkins says:

    I just received my copy and I completely remember the year you offered the short story for dona­tion. I almost picked that but instead chose a one on one conver­sa­tion with you. This story is why you are my my favorite author. The story is the thing for you and you would never shortcut the story. Thanks for being you and I look forward to reading the Severn story!

  40. Andrea D Smith says:

    Joey-Thanks for linking The Pixel Project reading. I enjoyed watching it a second time.

    I’m recov­ering from a concus­sion and this is the first “new” book I’ve tried read/listen to. Typi­cally we have ques­tions after finishing a new book and I’m still haven’t reached the end of Severn’s story. Will I ever make it to the end? Has anyone passed away from reading a great book so slowly or being on the edge of your seat too long? Thanks for another great story.

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