Greetings, friends! I have so much news for you!

I am just preparing Blood Triad to roll into the early stages of publication. It won’t be available to buy until May, but I will let you know when pre-orders are ready.

As the “triad” part of the name indicates, it’s three novellas, set in the world of the Blood & Ancient Scrolls series. Teeth Are Bones and Abyssinia you may have already read in other anthologies, but it also includes a brand-spankin’-new story, with Dubhghall and Wulfhram (who you met in the Rave Cave in Blood Ex Libris, and have seen show up in time for battle in other books) sharing the story of how they met and how they became am’r. It was an amazing story to write (and a delight to research) and I am really excited to share it with you. The editors enjoyed it, and I hope you will…well, eventually.

Why am I getting the book ready now, but publishing in May, you ask? Well, the first reason is that a number of the bigger review places require you send in a book three months before publication. Call me old fashioned, but I like getting reviewed in Publisher’s Weekly. It makes me feel like a real author. So we’re making our publishing schedule more like a big publishing house’s schedule and less like an indie schedule could be, because I want our books to be taken seriously.

The other reason is that, in republishing the first three books in the Blood & Ancient Scrolls series, we found out just how many moving parts there are in publishing a book, and how many stages there are where things can get tied up along the way. For me to plan to publish a book about six months after typing “The End” is something that’s been learned the hard way, trust me.

The cover is coming along SO EXCITINGLY and I want to sneak you a peak…but no, I must steel myself. But I can’t wait to do the cover reveal. We’re working with Kwasi again, who did the first three covers, and he’s really taking it to the next level…

I was just working on the Index Of Foreign Phrases for Blood Triad, and it made me realize that you can tell so much about the work as a whole from just that index along. So I thought I’d drop in a selection of words/phrases from all three stories, just to give you a taste:

And if that list doesn’t make you want to buy the book, honestly I don’t know what will ?‍♀️

My name’s Raven Belasco, and I’m a dark fantasy writer. These newsletters are about my work and that #authorlife. Updates out bimonthly to subscribers. Feel free to send your friends to my Beehiiv, where they can read the most recent letters and subscribe.

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New Co-Writer on the team!

He’s clearly thinking about Book IV in the series, already!

So, as you loyal newsletter readers know, we lost Cairngorm McWomble the Terrible, my beloved co-writer, back in November. He stayed around long enough to help me type “The End” on Blood Brothers, and then he needed not to be in his poor sick body any longer. I think you all know how intensely I have been grieving him.

But, apparently, he is still around watching over things. He sent me my next co-writer for all my stories (and if I wrote all the weird coincidences that lead it to be very clear that Cairngorm sent him along, this newsletter would be waaaaay too long), so may I present to you ??? Archibald Aleister McWomble, scion of that noble line ? He will be taking me on walkies when the plotting gets tricky from now on, and I am very grateful for that ?

OK, let’s call this newsletter done, and there will be plenty of news and exciting stuff for two weeks from now. I hope all of your later winters are being not-too-exciting, weather-wise, and that you’ve made the transition to 2024 smoothly ?

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