|March 1, 2012|
March brings the debut novel Fair Coin to a shelf near you. The author, E.C. Myers, joins us to shed light on his creative process. Let's take a look!
|Flip a Coin, Make a Wish|
"[A] stellar debut. It's witty, adventurous, and thought provoking. It takes the age-old tale of wishes gone wrong and turns it into something new and extraordinary....Highly recommended. This one made it straight to my favorites shelf."
-A New Kind of Ordinary blog
"The young protagonist discovers that his exact double has turned up dead and in his pocket is a magic coin that grants wishes when it is flipped....Some clever twists and a very quick read." -Fantasy Reviews
"[A] fun story with plenty of shocks and suspense, and the truth about the coin was unexpected and original. Readers of teen fiction who are looking for something other than supernatural romance or dystopian futures should check it out." -The Debut Review
"I recommend this book to any one interested in a character-driven science fiction young adult novel...The plot also will not disappoint."
-SFF Writer Chat
In E.C. Myers' Fair Coin, Ephraim is horrified when he comes home from school one day to find his mother unconscious from a suicide attempt. Even more disturbing is the reason for it: the dead boy she identified at the hospital that afternoon--a boy who looks exactly like him. While examining his dead double's belongings, Ephraim discovers a strange coin that makes his wishes come true each time he flips it. But Ephraim soon realizes that the coin comes with consequences when several wishes go disastrously wrong.
Like the Fair Coin/ Quantum Coin Facebook Page for more bonus content, including the cool new book trailer and a video blog by author E. C. Myers. And visit the Civilian Reader for an interview with Myers.
|E.C. Myers on Writing Fair Coin|
|One aspect of Fair Coin that I enjoyed was the fast pace. Did you plan out the plot, or did it develop organically?|
Thank you! I generally take an organic approach to writing. When I started Fair Coin, I knew the beginning of the story, the middle, and the very last scene, with a few scattered moments I wanted to hit along the way. I used those as milestones to guide me from point A to point B to point C, from the beginning straight through to the end. This can make for a meandering and messy first draft, but I find it more enjoyable and engaging than working from an outline because I'm discovering the story and characters as I write them, just as readers will. I often won't get to know my characters until I've spent some time with them. In fact, Mary and Shelley were insignificant in the first draft until I realized how much their characters resonated with the book's themes. Mary's connection to Ephraim was completely unexpected, and it's now one of my favorite things in Fair Coin. Similarly, Nathan's photography hobby became a bigger through line in subsequent drafts. I don't think I could have planned those things in advance.
I also like to keep up forward momentum while drafting, because it can carry you through the rough patches when you don't know what should happen next. So even if I realize in chapter 5 that chapter 1 was completely wrong, I won't go back to edit or rewrite earlier chapters; I just pretend that I've already made the necessary changes, make a note for revision, and move on. This is important if you ever want to type the best two words in a new manuscript: "The End." Once I can look at a completed draft, after getting a little bit of distance, I start planning the next draft. I'm prepared to tear it apart in this stage: moving scenes, deleting chapters, rewriting, and revising.
The last three chapters of Fair Coin were completely different in the first draft, aside from that final scene; I knew they were off immediately, but I needed to write them anyway in order to find the right ending. My books are made in revision. That's when I layer in themes, add plot points and deepen characters, and beef up description and dialogue. That's also when I ruthlessly cut, cut, cut to make it all flow as quickly as possible. I wish I could plan a book so well from the start, but it's more or less instinct--I'm literally making it up as I go along.
|Thief's Covenant Ebook Release|
Ari Marmell's Thief's Covenant
is now available for Kindle
at a 50% discount!
"[T]his may be one of the best fantasy young adult novels to hit the shelves this year." -New Paltz Oracle "The humor and verbal fencing were delightfully cheeky, perfect for a YA novel...Whether you're twelve in real years, or merely still twelve in some part of your heart, Thief's Covenant is a book I highly recommend." -Adventures Fantastic blog
Once she had climbed to the ranks of the city 's aristocracy in a rags-to-riches story straight from an ancient fairy tale. Today she is Widdershins, a thief making her way with a sharp blade, a sharper wit, and the mystical aid of Olgun, a foreign god. Widdershins and Olgun are going to find answers, and justice, for what happened to her-but only if those who almost destroyed her in those years gone by don't finish the job first.
|Mark Hodder in your Ears|
The Speculate! podcast has a a trio of episodes featuring Mark Hodder. Episode 35
features a review of and reaction to The Strange Affair of Spring Heeled Jack
. Episode 36
, Hodder joins the podcast to talk about writing and steampunk. And in Episode 37
, the interview continues as Hodder discusses the specific techniques he used to write Spring Heeled Jack
"Sprunk weaves a superb story, switching between storylines with aplomb, all the while delivering not just a great story but ensuring it's one with a rich, textured background. He doesn't just create believable characters - he creates a marvelous, believable setting in which those characters fight for their lives. Whether describing a duel between two characters in the dead of night or a huge battle, he does so with consummate care and imagination."-SciFi Pulse
"The action, as expected, is extremely well done...It's fun, smooth and easy to visualize...a very enjoyable book...Yeah, I liked Shadow's Master quite a bit... Go buy Sprunk's novels. They are great pieces of assassin-themed fantasy that everyone should be enjoying."-Elitist Book Reviews
The northern wastes. . . . A land of death and shadow where only the strongest survive. Yet that is where Caim must go to follow the mystery at the heart of his life. To succeed on this mission, Caim will have to more than just survive. He must face the Shadow's Master.
Jon Sprunk concludes the Shadow Saga in Shadow's Master. If you haven't tried the Shadow Saga, check out the coupon below-- Shadow's Son, the first book in the series, is half-off for Pyr-a-zine subscribers, for March only.
That's it for this issue. As always, please check out our entire catalog
and drop by our blog
Editorial Assistant, Pyr®
an imprint of Prometheus Books