In terms of blatant self promotion (hey, it is my blog), I’ll highlight that reviews are coming in for Lillian Holmes and the Leaping Man, and I’m stoked about them. The newest is from Library Journal, which says: “ Cullen builds here upon the world in her previous title (The Shopgirl and the Vampire), and one hopes she’ll continue to add tales to this saga. With Lillian, Cullen has created an imperfect character to root for in both life and love and surrounded her with a ragtag band of associates. A paranormal romance packed with drama, drugs, and danger.—Kellie Tilton, Univ. of Cincinnati, Blue Ash”
So here’s the thing. I’ve never been that encouraged (or really had the confidence) to pursue a series until now. Words like Ms. Tilton’s help a great deal. Someone wants MOAR.
But the person who wants MOAR more than anyone seems to be Chris Keeslar, Editor in Chief at Boroughs Publishing. Some of you no doubt know Chris far better than I do, have met him at conferences or wrote for him at Dorchester, etc. All I have are a series of emails, but those emails mirror my book.
Lillian Holmes is a confused, wounded soul who looks to her hero, Sherlock Holmes, to bury herself in a fantasy world. She writes to Arthur Conan Doyle hoping for some insight into her heritage. What she gets back is advice. And later, a bit of interest on his part in learning more about her world (I’m writing the second book now in which that happens). Lillian treasures these communiques. I treasure mine.
Or, rather, now that I think about it, I could easily liken Chris’s “guidance” as editor of this series to Holmes himself. “Give me more! This is superficial; where is the conflict? Why does she do that? Wouldn’t it make more sense if…” You get the idea.
I offer advice to authors rarely, but I’ll offer this. You’ve heard it before. Write what feels true, what interests you, and find the best editor you can. If your editor says “wow, great, just need a few commas,” you probably need to keep looking. If your editor pokes holes in the soul of your work, makes you afraid you can never, ever do what he wants you to, makes you feel as though you’re simply not smart enough to even understand what the hell he’s talking about…well then your editor is probably Chris. Or you’re lucky to have found someone close.
Yes, I rather think I’ll fantasize that my editor IS Sherlock. He even looks a bit like him, if you squint in rather bad lighting.
“His very person and appearance were such as to strike the attention of the most
casual observer. In height he was rather over six feet, and so excessively
lean that he seemed to be considerably taller. His eyes were sharp and piercing,
save during those intervals of torpor to which I have alluded; and his thin, hawk-like nose gave his whole expression an air of alertness and decision. His chin, too, had the prominence and squareness which mark the man of determination. His hands were invariably blotted with ink and stained with chemicals, yet he was possessed of extraordinary delicacy of touch, as I frequently had occasion to observe when I watched him
manipulating his fragile philosophical instruments.”
A keen eye and gentle touch. Go forth, write the book of your dreams, and find a great editor!
The book is available in a few spots, notably at Amazon