WAR: preview chapter, plus news.

Posted in Books, Elantra, Short Stories, writing.

I seem to have misplaced April.

First: News. I have sold DAW Books the first four novels in the series that is now called The Burning Crown, but which I’ve called The End of Days arc for decades. I have no titles, but do have dead­lines — the first of which is July of 2020. That’s when it’s due to the publisher. It’s not a publi­ca­tion date >.<.

This is the last arc of the Essalieyan universe. I expect it to be roughly the same as the Sun Sword in length. (Well, no, I orig­i­nally thought, it’s just these two books, right? I have endings! Greek Chorus: No, Michelle, try to be real­istic for once. You thought the Sun Sword was two books, too — Broken Crown and Sun Sword.

But I had key endpoints and the first endpoint was at the end of book three.)

War thumb-nail

Second: mini State of the Writer for May:

I finished Cast in Wisdom in Australia. I finished a very overdue short piece — which was 49k words when done T_T — on Mother’s Day. This was my first visit to Australia where there was not a lot of sun.

(This is not a bad thing for me, I hasten to add.)

I am going back to work on the Severn novel, because it has a dead­line and I would like not to be pulling all my hair out while attempting to meet it.

I am going back to work on the first Burning Crown novel; I have about as many words of each book written.

No, neither of these has actual titles yet T_T.

None of this is why you’re actu­ally here, though.

It’s one month before pub date for WAR, so it’s time for the preview chapter of War. It’s here.

22 Responses to WAR: preview chapter, plus news.

  1. Anna Wick says:

    Thank you for the preview chapter, I’m bored at work and it gives me joy. I really enjoy Stacy and the Soldier

  2. Tyronne Hodgins says:

    LOL Michelle. So, you have a four book series presently called the burning crown. Congrat­u­la­tions!!!! Given your past history, I figure this will be turn into at least 6 books. BELIEVE this is NOT a crit­i­cism. I wish you all the best because I truly love reading (and rereading) every­thing you write. Looking very forward most anxiously to War. Now, I’m looking forward to Cast in Wisdom too and the Severn novel!

  3. Kelly says:

    ok just want to say that I didn’t post any comments on your last book, as I wasn’t sure if War was to be the final book in the series. I was overly disap­pointed in thinking that there was NO WAY to finish all the wonderful arcs in the Essalieyan universe in one book (no matter how long that book ends up being!). And to be honest, the few artists (writers) that I faith­fully follow have been disap­pointing of late. (looking at you GRR Martin & J Butcher!) I didn’t want to come off as one of those berating a@@hole fans.
    That being said, THANK YOU!!! You have just made my year (and do I ever need that ray of sunshine, lol).
    And if The Burning Crown or EofD ends up being more than 7 wonderful books, I will be ecsta­t­i­cally grateful!

  4. Esa says:

    I’ve only read your Essalieyan books, so I can’t really say anything about the others, but I’m really excited for Burning Crown! I asked you about it’s expected length last fall and you said “four very long books”, and it’s nice to get a confir­ma­tion that plans haven’t changed (I really love long series that I can get lost into).

    Also, speaking of long series, are you aware that once the Burning Crown series is finished, Essalieyan will have become the longest contin­uous fantasy story ever written by a single person? I think that’s pretty cool.

  5. michelle says:

    @Tyronne: I am trying to be real­istic, honest! … which is why I said Sun Sword length, prob­ably.

    @Kelly: Someone did once write to me in a fury at the end of my Sun Sword trilogy. (Which wasn’t a trilogy, but I think she’d read on one web-site or another that it was a trilogy) I.e. After Shining Court. And I did explain that it wasn’t a trilogy and said I would be really unhappy if it ended there as well, and then she read her initial email and said, Wow, sorry — I was just so involved in the char­ac­ters and I thought you’d just dropped the series off a cliff!

    But: Breo­danir and some of the char­ac­ters in the Dominion were intended to come back in the End of Days arc, i.e. this one.

    @Esa: I did not know that — but in the back of my head I group fantasy series set in the same world together, so I’m really far behind people like Misty Lacky or my personal idol, Terry Pratchett.

  6. michelle says:

    @bonnie: I just tested the link – it came up for me three times. It might be a connec­tion issue between you and the server?

    There’s also the usual link from the book page — but the one on this page did work for me. Admit­tedly, I’ve already read the preview multiple times.

  7. Andrea H. says:

    Well, at least I have a nice good chunk of time to prepare myself for the end of a series I started reading when I was 12, in 1997, 22 years ago. So excited!!!

  8. Marie Roberts says:

    After waiting 3 years for the last book in the house series, I had to reread from Hunter novels (2) Sun Sword series and the House War series to refresh, .I’m almost finish Oracle„, then then I can read First Born. Enjoyed them as much as the first read. After Reading The Hunter Brother for the fourth time, I still cried at the end of the second novel. The Cast series are quick and enter­taining, but the Sun Sword series are in class all by them­selves. They are classic. The time and the research, the details of each event took a person right into the scene as well as the House War series. They are not a quick read but, are meant to be all that a book should be. Thankyou again for all your hard work. Marie

  9. DeDe says:

    So excited!! Can’t wait to see how the End of Days plays out. And I’ve been checking my War delivery date at least twice a week — just in case June had arrived and I’d missed it. ;-)

    Have to admit to mixed feel­ings (and a pit in my stomach feeling) with the words ‘Last arc’. It has been such a wonderful story­line; I hate to leave the world behind. If I’ve got mixed emotions — I can’t imagine how you must feel. Maybe down the road — you’ll do a writer post about that?

  10. E Dianne Fiorentini says:

    I ws so pleased to read the preview chapter and can hardly wait for the book. This series has been a most enjoy­able ride. No doubt when it all ends I will be saddened and just have to start over. You have brought more enjoy­ment than I can express. You truly created a marvelous world an many complex and stun­ning char­ac­ters. Thank you.

  11. Carol Duffy says:

    Excited for all of it :) Thank you for the update and preview chapter! Btw, where will we be able to acquire the short story?

  12. Peter Moore says:

    First of all, Yea and Hooray for the preview chapter. I haven’t read it yet but will this evening. Right now it’s a beau­tiful day out and I need to do some photog­raphy.
    Secondly: Yea and hooray for your Burning Crown contract. I am so very excited to be looking forward on how you pull it all together. The House Wars people, the Hunter Duology people, The Sun Sword people and then some of the char­ac­ters that have been in your short works but not in the major novels (Hunt­brother and The Memory of Stone in partic­ular) I must admit that I too, think of this coming story arc as “The End of Days”. I will also admit that as much as I love all of your work I have a special place in my heart for The Memory of Stone. That story speaks to me more than any others you have written.
    Finally: One ques­tion, will you ever bundle all the short fiction that is connected with the Essaylieyan story arcs into one volume? I for one would love that. One cannot have to many Michelle West/Sagara works on the shelf or on the e-reader.

  13. chibipoe says:
  14. Peter Moore says:

    First of all thanks to chibipoe for the link. It’s not all of her short fiction related to the Essalieyan universe but it’s close, so thanks.
    To Ms West: Yes ebook or bound book makes no differ­ence to me. I’ve tracked down all of your short fiction that I could find but it would be nice to have them all together in one place. Besides I really really like your short fiction.

  15. Jeanine says:

    Ordered your book some time ago. Thanks for the delightful appe­tizer though. Also, if you decide to issue a collec­tion of your short stories, I would defi­nitely be inter­ested. I vote for paper over e-book. No pres­sure though! Thanks again.

  16. Hi, since War is coming out. I was thinking this would be a good time to get into the Essalieyan world. I was wondering if there was anywhere that had the reading order with the short stories included? Because my head is weird and partic­ular about reading books in order :)

  17. *sorry if this posts twice, my computer was acting up*
    So with War coming out, I decided it’s a good time to get into the Essalieyan world. And I was wondering if there’s a reading order with the short stories included? My brain is weird and partic­ular about reading books in order.

    Also, yeah that Cast in Wisdom is written, because then we’re ever closer for it being up for ARC reading :)

  18. michelle says:

    @Louisa: If you mean is there a chrono­log­ical reading order, no =/.

    As a reader, I tend to read in the chrono­log­ical published order, in part because there’s a flow to it — to what the author knew, and when. It’s hard to write a book that isn’t in part influ­enced by all the other books, even when one is trying really hard — what I know as the writer is…what I know, and it’s hard to see when it’s not obvious.

    But: Sacred Hunt comes before the novella, Hunt­brother. The second book — or second part of the large omnibus, Hunter’s Death over­laps with the events of House Name.

    If you want to start at the begin­ning, Sacred Hunt, followed by the novella Hunt­brother. And then if you want to read chrono­log­i­cally, the first 3 books of The House War, followed by the 6 books of Sun Sword, followed by the last 5 books of The House War.

    The short stories, hmm. The Weapon takes place well before any of the novels. Memory of Stone Takes place before The House War. So does Warlord. Echoes takes place in the past — but it starts at a time that over­laps Sea of Sorrows, as in, that’s where Kallan­dras is consid­ering his past.

    The Black Ospreys over­laps the final book in the Sun Sword series, but starts before it, and finishes after. I’d not suggest reading it until after you’ve finished the Sun Sword series.

    And that’s about all I have for reading guid­ance.

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