About Character, and a New Thieftaker Short Story

Today, I have a new short story out at Tor.com, under the D.B. Jackson pseudonym. The story is called “The Price of Doing Business.” It’s set in the Thieftaker world and it tells the story of Ethan Kaille’s first encounter with Sephira Pryce, who later becomes his rival and nemesis. The artwork is by the marvelous Chris McGrath, who also has done the jacket art for the Thieftaker books. [Update, 2/19/2014, 10:00 CST: The story is now live on the Tor.com site and can be found here. And here’s the updated artwork as well; I wasn’t sure which image they would use. I actually like this second one better.]

Last week we talked about plotting here at MW. This week, starting with Di’s post on Monday, and continuing with Chloe Neill’s post yesterday, we are talking about character. And so the release of this short story comes at a perfect […]

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On Publishing and Publicity: Setting Up a Blog Tour

In response to Faith’s wonderful post from last week, and her promise of more PR posts to come, I thought I would put in my $.02 by outlining what I did in setting up the Thieftaker and Thieves’ Quarry Blog Tours during the summers of 2012 and 2013. This is one of those PR activities that I never even dreamed of doing when I first broke into the business, because there were no such things as blogs. Today I can say without exaggeration that my blog tours have been the single most important publicity tool I have had in gaining readership for the Thieftaker books. Whether you’re an aspiring writer trying to figure out how to pump up the volume for your very first release, or an established professional looking to kick off a new project, I cannot recommend this strategy enough.

Let’s start with the obvious question: What […]

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Release Day Fun!!

Release day for the hardcover of Thieves’ Quarry and the paperback edition of Thieftaker is tomorrow, July 2. This will be my fourteenth release day of an original title (I’ve had somewhere in the mid-twenties if you include all the paperback editions), and I have to admit to being every bit as nervous and excited about this one as I have been about all the others. The excitement never really gets old, and the fear never ever goes away.

As part of my ongoing Thieves’ Quarry Blog Tour, I have two posts up today in addition to this one. I am at Aidan Moher’s “A Dribble of Ink” with a post about ideology and writing, which expands on a post I wrote here several weeks back. I am also interviewed at the blog of friend-of-MW, Alethea Kontis. I hope you will check out both posts.

I am too frazzled/psyched/terrified to […]

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On Writing and Creativity: Who Are Our Characters?

[Warning: This post touches on an emotional political issue in order to illustrate a point. I do NOT want the comments on this post to devolve into political debate. This is ultimately a post about writing and character work. Please refrain from commenting on the political stuff beyond how it relates to character work. Comments that are polemical or divisive, whether or not they agree with my personal political views, will be deleted. Thank you. We now return to our regularly scheduled Monday post…]

There is a moment late in the second Thieftaker book, Thieves’ Quarry (due out July 2 from Tor), in which my protagonist, Ethan Kaille, explains to another character all that has happened in the previous days and how the magic wielded by the “bad guy” contributed to a series of attacks and deaths. When he is finished, he and the character in question have the following […]

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An Interview with Ethan Kaille, Thieftaker and Conjurer

Ethan Kaille is one of Colonial Boston’s leading thieftakers. He is also a conjurer, an ex-convict, and a veteran of the War of the Austrian Succession, in which he served as a sailor in the navy of His Majesty King George II. Though an intensely private man, he recently agreed, albeit reluctantly, to sit down and answer a few questions about his life, his career, and, of course, his rivalry with Sephira Pryce, Boston’s famed “Empress of the South End.”

*****Mister Kaille, thank you for joining us today. I wonder if you wouldn’t begin by telling us a bit about your work as a thieftaker.

There is little to tell, really. Boston is filled with reprobates and fools, and invariably men who fall into one category or the other take it upon themselves to improve their meagre lot in life by stealing from the city’s monied class. When they do, […]

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