Sunday, February 03, 2008

No Knights

My mother subscribes to a certain book club, and when one of my books shows up in their catalog, she always sends me a full color copy of the page. I think she expects me to frame it. Forget making the Times list twice; my novel is in the book club -- this to her is authentic fame.

When these book club folks kindly ran a full-page ad on my work (first time, this) Mom went zinging over the moon with joy and immediately sent me a copy, which I received today. It's a very lovely ad, but at the top of the page is a banner that reads "THE KNIGHTS OF DARKYN."

For a split second I thought Someone helped themselves to my series title? until I saw from the cover art that no, they were talking about my novel. My novel Evermore. That doesn't have any knights in it. Not a one. There are lots of immortal pathogen-mutated beings, tourists, weapons, horses, banquets, dancing, songs, battles and even a working moat with submersible bastions, but I'm sorry, no knights.

The characters in the novel are vampire-like immortals, most of whom were Templars about seven hundred years ago, but fortunately they got over it. They now dress up and pretend they're knights in front of humans as part of their cover in order to live how they want, make a few bucks and co-exist with mortals. Because really, how else are you going to justify living in medieval conditions in a real castle with a working moat in the middle of freaking twenty-first century Florida unless you:

A) Make it invisible with a big honking spell, which is magic, which I don't do.

B) Hide it in an enormous forest of darkness, but this is the sunshine state, and most of our forests burned down during the wildfires last year, so all we have are brightly-lit scorched-black fields with a couple little teeny tiny treelings sprouting at the moment.

C) Use time travel, which would have to be science-based because again, the magic thing, which would then make the story a science fiction time travel vampire fiction paranormal dark fantasy, which I'm pretty sure would make my editor's head explode.

D) Turn it into a tourist attraction and charge everyone fifty bucks to get in.

See? "D" is the best solution, right?

While I thought about it, I remembered that the formal name I gave Byrne's castle/tourist attraction was Knight's Realm, which is likely the keyword culprit here. That or my Kyn are extremely good actors and fooled the book club reader into believing they were knights. I wouldn't put anything past them.

Why make the big deal out of so small a thing? Please, let me make a prediction: in a couple of weeks I'll start getting snail mail and e-mail from every book club member who saw that banner, didn't read the rest of the ad copy (or assumed it was a Jude Devereaux novel or whatever) and ordered the book. They'll complain that they expected a nice historical knightly romance and instead got icky disgusting dark fantasy with vampires dressed up as fake knights. And it'll be my fault. Trust me. It's always the author's fault.

Although I'm not responsible for this banner, I'll make the disclaimer now: there are no knights of Darkyn, I don't write knight books, and no actual knights appear in Evermore. Any knight you may think you're reading about is a vampire-like being dressed up like one to fool you and the tourists. For novels with real knights, please read Jude Devereaux.

8 comments:

  1. I am a member of that book club and I saw the ad and thought it was strange for a few seconds until my mind made the leap to their Templar days and Bryne's castle. It probably helped that I had already read the books. I hope everyone reads the ad copy so you don't get a lot of complaints although I can't imagine why they would want books about regular old knights when they could have dark fantasy with vampires dressed up as fake knights. : )

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  2. battlekitty8:39 AM

    OMG, Lynn, I could have died laughing when I saw that title! Yep, they WERE Templars, but so are not goody-goody boys now! Obviously, this book club is trying to sell more of your books and feels that a spiffy new series title will help them out. Yes, many people are doing Paranormal (mostly vampire) Romance right now. But, your series has a much more interesting take on the theory. It doesn't need a new title to sell it in my opinion! Hope the complaints are limited!
    Tami
    Jacksonville

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  3. a science fiction time travel vampire fiction paranormal dark fantasy

    I would totally read that.

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  4. I love the disclaimer. And, absolutely, "D" makes the most sense, but the others could have been good books, I suppose.

    I guess we don't want your editor's head to explode. Besides, when naming the genre takes longer than reading the book, I think there might be a touch too much specificity.

    As for "The Knights of Darkyn," I suspect whomever wrote that couldn't allow reality to overcome the deliciousness (in their mind) of the play on words resulting from the night/knight and dark/darkn playing together.

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  5. ROFL. *hugs* on the upcoming upset letters and emails. Marketing...what a pain in the butt.

    Hope you're having a great weekend, Lynn.

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  6. Aw shucks, I was getting excited. LOL

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  7. But it's in the BOOK CLUB!

    What's the big deal? You write in some knights in the next book. Time after that, if it's Sex Kittens, okay, you put your foot down.

    One of my friends got a cover that featured the heroine with the wrong hair. The cover was done before the final edits so she was asked to change the color and length of her heroine's hair rather than send the cover back to art and reprinting. I wonder how often that sort of thing happens?

    She felt lucky that someone bothered to send her the cover in time.

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