Of The Essence, In the Flesh

 

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The author, with her precioussssss 

So. Last weekend at CanCon, I got to meet my book. As anyone present can attest, I could not stop hugging my book. 🙂

Yes, that’s a hardcover, with a book jacket and everything! It’s also in trade paperback, ebook, and audiobook. I will be selling the print copies, signed, from this site…eventually. I won’t put ordering info up until I have a box of them safely in my hands. This one? This one is mine!

Here’s a sampling of what people are saying so far:

  • “Harbowy[‘s] ability to create realistic portrayals of otherworldly lives is astounding.” -Lambda Literary
  • “Harbowy writes with the precision of an editor, and the sensibility and passion of a writer.” -Leah Petersen, author of the Physics of Falling series
  • “Can’t describe the radness of Gabrielle Harbowy’s Of the Essence in 140 characters. You’re gonna have to hear it to understand.” -Angela Dawe, voice actor; narrator of Of the Essence

Onder Radio

Have you checked out Onder Radio, the first podcast from Onder Librum (aka the Ed Greenwood Group)? In the first episode, Ed Greenwood gives a lovely shout-out to my debut novel, Of the Essence, which will be out at the end of April. (This month! Eee.)

Ed says:

Mysterious and dark, it brings more than a few daemons to VERY vivid life…and explores a lot of England, too. It’s by Gabrielle Harbowy, a very talented writer and author whom I’ve had the honor of working with on FOUR anthologies now.
[…] I think it really captures what it feels like for the daemons who live among us and are happy to live among us — or at least, are happy to live on earth. And how cruel daemons can be with each other, and what happens when daemons start putting pressure on each other.
It’s a deliciously dark book.
Thank you, Ed!    🙂

Presenting Quills [Cover Reveal!]

Cover Reveal: OF THE ESSENCE at the Onder Librum website.

Meet Quills: she’s a daemon with an affinity for ink, and her medium is magical tattoos.

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When a powerful daemon is killed on modern-day Earth, all signs point to his nemesis, a daemon named Tehru. But Tehru knows that at least one other daemon has access to her unique power: Quills, who takes life essence in payment for her work. Now the murdered daemon’s followers are coming after Tehru for retribution. Quills has five days to find the murderer and clear Tehru’s name. If she doesn’t succeed in time, Quills will be the one who takes the fall.

My debut novel will be on sale April 30, 2016. It will be in audio (narrated by the amazing Angela Dawe!), hardcover, trade paperback, and ebook formats. Some of those formats may take longer than others to propagate on Amazon and the Onder Librum site, so please be patient. I think the audio CD is the only thing up on Amazon for preorder at this point, but please keep checking back.

The art is by Hellmaw Art Director Eric Belisle. I saw this portrait and knew right away that this daemon had a story I could tell. I’m excited to be the first Hellmaw author with a Daemon of Color, the first story to take place outside of North America, and the first Hellmaw novel told through the daemon’s first person point of view.

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I Finished My Novel!

I debated over titles for this post, but I think this is the biggest thing I have to say. I finished my novel!

If you’re counting, that means I’ve turned in TWO original written-by-me novels this year. I’m still a little stunned, honestly. This isn’t something I would have thought I could do, but I did it and I even held on to my sanity and health. (Mostly.) It meant canceling on all but one convention for 2015 and missing Thanksgiving with my family, but I did it. Hopefully this will make a lot of travel opportunities happen over the next two years. Including visits to my family.

The Hellmaw setting is still under a pretty tight Non Disclosure Agreement, so there isn’t much I can tell you about the book or the setting. However, I’ll tell you what I can:

  • My book title is OF THE ESSENCE.
  • It is a standalone novel. That is, there are no sequels planned at this time. It’s open-ended enough to entertain a sequel in the future, if it does well and readers clamor for more, but I had so many plates in the air already that I only wanted to commit to one book at a time.
  • It has chapters, but not chapter titles. Just chapter numbers.
  • It has characters.
  • It passes the Bechdel test.
  • It does not contain sexual violence.
  • If it were a movie, it would probably be rated R.
  • It will be available in May, 2016.
  • The moment it’s up on Goodreads and Amazon, I will let you know.
  • I’m really, really proud of it, and I hope everyone else enjoys it too. 🙂

 

 

Process: Writing the Actiony Stuff

I complained to Matt, my husband, that I’m not confident about writing the big action sequences. I can do them, I’m not saying I can’t, but they’re not my comfort zone.

He said, “You’re going to have to get used to them. You’ll probably be writing a lot of them. If only there was a macro you could use as a template and just fill it in.”

I said, “Like Pokemon? ‘$name attacks $name2 using $skill. It’s $adjective effective!’ except not like that?”

He said, “No. Exactly like that. Block it out like that, and then embellish around it until it’s a scene.”

Blocking is a theater term for staging out where characters go and when.

I did it. Just the bare bones at first. I made the decisions, keeping it simple.

A shoots B.
C taunts B.
B attacks C.
D, unnoticed, moves to get a clear shot at C.

Then I turned those bones into a fleshed-out sequence, which was much less intimidating once I knew the mechanics and could see it in my head.

It works. I was self-conscious about complaining, but it spawned conversation and a good, do-able solution.

Also, my husband is smart. 🙂

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Welcome to the Hellmaw !

…in which that which has been secret is now partway revealed.
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I’m pleased to be able to announce that my novel OF THE ESSENCE is going to be unleashed upon the world in May 2016, as part of The Ed Greenwood Group’s Hellmaw setting. For more info on the setting, and the other authors fortunate enough to get to play in it, please click the happy, friendly logo above. 🙂

This will be my first published novel. (The second novel I sold, but the first one to be published. Because: publishing!)

And here, at last, is the catalog copy.

When a powerful daemon warlord is murdered in modern-day England, all signs point in the same direction: to Tehru, his nemesis throughout the dynastic war on Araunt. But Tehru knows that someone else has access to her power: Quills, a back-alley magic dealer and tattooist who once received a sample of Tehru’s essence as payment for her services. Now the murdered daemon’s followers are coming after Tehru for retribution, and Quills has to track down the real killer and clear her client’s name. If Quills doesn’t solve the murder in time, she’ll be the one to take the fall.