Song of the night, just gifted to myself from iTunes. Because everyone needs ridiculous songs to flail around wildly to during nights like this one.
In fact, listen to it while you read the rest of this post.
Cause I am.
I have been informed that the following news has already been announced to the industry channels, and I’ve been told I can post about it, but I haven’t gotten to it until now because hey, I was out celebrating with a Chipotle dinner, so I’m a little behind on my announcements, and this is one of those weird deals that makes for awesome bar chat.
So, God’s War has been bouncing around at publishers since this summer. First on a query I sent out to Del Rey, who ultimately passed, even after a round of revisions (“not marketable enough”), then on to one of the editors at Bantam (“ultimately not marketable enough”) and had been sitting out at another publisher for three weeks when my agent suddenly heard from the senior editor at Bantam, Juliet Ulman.
Ulman had gotten wind of the project (which, again, had already been passed on by another editor at Bantam) and asked my agent to send the book back to Bantam. This time, it landed on Ulman’s desk.
24 hours later, Ulman sent my agent an offer for a 3 book deal with an option for my next book.
My book was accepted by an editor at a house where it had already been rejected.
What a 24-hour receipt-to-offer time tells me is that Ulman was thinking something like, “I don’t fucking care if nobody has any idea how to market this. I WANT TO BUY THIS BOOK” (but you’ll have to ask her for her exact thought process on this one).
And you know what 24-hour-receipt-to-offer means to me?
I found somebody who fucking LOVES my book. And that makes me so fucking happy I can’t even tell you. I so wanted to find somebody who loved this weird, bloody, contaminated desert slash-and-hack adventure novel, I just can’t tell you (and after I found out Ulman was also K.J. Bishop and Jeff VanderMeer’s editor at Bantam, it suddenly made sense that this was the editor who liked this book).
We officially accepted Bantam’s offer today, after the third publisher decided not to make a counter-offer (Yes: “just not marketable enough”).
Ok, jump up and down for glee and be happy.
Now I’m going to explain to you why I am not suddenly J.K. Rowling rich, and there’s a reason my celebratory dinner tonight was out at Chipotle.
Cause see, Scalzi wasn’t just blowing smoke up his ass with his money post.
The typical advance for a first novel is $5-15K. Minus agent’s 15%. Minus self-employed taxes (generally, 30%).
And since these are checks that will end up with me, I’ll break this all down for you without any shame.
I got a 3 book deal at 10K per book.
Now, do the math (yes, it’s hard, but this is what I was doing all last night).
After agent’s (awesomely deserved, let me tell you!) fee, and taxes, I’ll get paid out roughly half of what the deal is actually for, paid out over the next 3 years.
So I’m not rich.
But you better bet I’m paying off a credit card just before Wiscon and getting myself some goddamn new pants after all.
NOW THAT I’VE GOTTEN THAT OUT OF THE WAY:
Want to see more books like God’s War (because I know at least half of you have been reading excerpts of it here for years)? Want kick-ass heroines who chop off people’s heads and bloody their way across the desert with not too much interest in husbands and kids (but sex is yummy) and bring brutal justice and whiskey drinking back into style?
Buy it for your kids (12+ If you’re squeamish about violence or swearing, you probably don’t read this blog), yourself, your significant other, your coworkers (mine are already asking when they can pre-order from Amazon), all the geeks you know (Nyx is way hotter than that lame-o Cylon in the red dress; Nyx is fucking SCARY), Sue & Joe Blow on the street (really, who doesn’t love a good far-future romp across the desert with a kick-ass heroine?), your dogs (there are shapeshifters in this book, did I mention that?), your martial arts and boxing buddies (boxing as plot device! Yes, it has boxing too!), and every woman you know who ever wanted to kick a little ass.
Because it’s an ass-kicking little book.
And I am very, very proud of it right about now.
There’s a reason I was redoing my writing schedule last night, too. Black Desert will be due by the end of the year at the latest (shouldn’t be a problem; it’s halfway done), and Babylon a year after that. Oh shit I have to get cracking. Yes, that’s right:
Start the 2010 decade off right with Nyx & co.
God’s War: Fall 2009
Black Desert: Fall 2010
Babylon: Fall 2011
(tentative titles and schedules. I haven’t seen this in writing yet)
You keep buying them, I’ll keep writing them.
And though they’ll all get proper acknowledgements full of enthusiastic swear words and colorful verbs later, huge thanks right now to Jenn Jackson and Juliet Ulman, because I quickly learned that there wasn’t a clear marketing niche for this one, and they’re both taking a risk with the project.
Thanks for believing in it, cause I know we’re just getting started.
Writing peeps (you know who you are): thanks for keeping the faith with me. There were times when it got lonely here. And now it’s all uphill. But. Hey. I reached the hill!
Now go buy my book! 😉