Oh, dear readers and friends, the sour shame! The horripilating humiliation! I have set and then been forced to change the release date of the second book in the Cthulhu Attacks! trilogy, The Faith, again and again and again. There are a couple of reasons why its release has been pushed back like a cat when you try to kiss it.
One is that the first Cthulhu Attacks! book, The Fear, was so well received and sold so well that I have long had anxiety about falling victim to “the sophomore slump.” Think Alanis Morissette’s followup to Jagged Little Pill. Think the first sequel to The Matrix. (DO NOT think of the second sequel at all, ever.)
Damn it, readers. That order was for your protection!
Think of the second season of Heroes. For God’s sake, think of Cuba Gooding, Jr.’s career after he won the Oscar. Seriously, Radio? Fucking Boat Trip? What I’m saying is that sophomore slump is a real thing, even a paralyzing thing, for creative people who have tasted even the barely-rent-paying success of Cthulhu Attacks! Book 1.
So I have spent the past 13 months or so outlining, playing with ideas, and generally setting everything up for Cthulhu 2, but haven’t actually done that writing thing that my faithful readers have come to expect from me. I can’t even say I had writer’s block, since I have written four novels and three Penny Dreadful novelettes since then.
No, it is fear, plain and simple. Ironic, don’t ya think, since I’m writing a book that picks up where my book literally titled The Fear leaves off. The cyclopean task has loomed over me, blocking out the sun and making me feel … well, afraid. There are literally dozens of people waiting for this book, and they have not been shy about asking for it at Cons I have attended this year.
“How long until Cthulhu 2 is out? Um … two weeks. Where will it be available? Two weeks. How much will it cost? TWO … WEEEEEEEKS!!!”
Anyway, I have found how to get my ass writing Cthulhu Attacks! Part Deux. I’m going to first publish it as a serial.
Yes, just like good ol’ Charlie Dickens, Stephen King, William Makepeace Thackeray, Wilkie Collins, and Arthur Conan Doyle with his Sherlock Holmes tales. True fact: So many people crammed in to wait for the boat carrying the last chapter of Dickens’s The Old Curiosity Shop that the dock almost collapsed under their weight.
And this book was not David Copperfield. It wasn’t Oliver Twist. This was The Old Freakin’ Curiosity Shop. People love serials, is what I’m saying. I expect the entire Internet to crash when these Cthulhu 2 installments become available.
Aye, but there’s a catch. I hope I’ve already won you over, in spite of me, so please hear me out: While everyone will be able to get ahold of Cthulhu 2 when it is smoothed out, edited to make the transition from serialized chapters to a full monolithic novel, and published, only certain readers will be able to receive the serial installments.
Yeah, sorry, but only this select group will get to read Cthulhu Attacks! Book 2: The Faith as a serial. Everybody else gon’ have to wait until the book comes out sometime in 2017.
But wait—wait! I beg of you to hear me out before you send the sleepy cat-wolf thing after me. You oughta know it is neither greed nor inherent assholishness that drives this Cthulhu 2 serialization distribution. It is copyright necessity if I want to get my book into the eager readers of The Fear faster than otherwise possible.
You see, my awesome publisher, Severed Press, has the print and eBook rights to the Cthulhu Attacks! trilogy, and both writers and readers know that you don’t fuck with a good publisher. Of course, a bad publisher like, say, PERMUTED PRESS, should be fucked with as much as possible, beaten into strawberry jam, and fed to a cat-wolf.
But Severed Press is a good publisher. More than that, actually: a GREAT publisher that understands its readers and the market. I am extremely lucky and proud to be one of their authors. (And if you have written any solid kaiju, zombie, sea monster, or apocalypse novel or novella of quality, you should contact them about it. Definitely check out some of their incredibly fun books and see how they promote their authors and new releases.)
So I don’t want to do anything bad or even unethical to them. Like, say, publicly selling the book they’re going to publish before they publish it. (Even though the serial will by necessity be a bit different, it’s the same book for all legal intents and purposes.) What I can do, however, is send serial installments of this “work in progress” for free to certain “beta readers” for feedback. By necessity and legally, this must be a particular, limited group and the material must be given, not sold.
What it all comes down to, my friends, is that everything’s gonna be fine fine fine. Those lucky readers who have been the most ravenous to read the new book, asking when is the goddamn book going to be done, clutching the lapels of my “Who Farted?” t-shirt and screaming I NEED THE NEXT CTHULHU ATTACKS! BOOK, will be able to get a new chapter every single week. But there is that catch—one that will benefit both readers and the author greatly, however, so it actually turns out to be intensely awesome.
What is this “awesome” catch? You’ll have to tune in tomorrow to find out.
Yes, yes, cat-wolf thing, enough already. I’ll sleep with one eye open, okay?