I have to apologize -- I thought I had posted the winner of the Mindtracks giveaway, but for some reason Blogger decided it was a draft instead of an entry, which is why it never showed up on the blog. We actually did get out the magic hat earlier this week, and the winner is:
Heather, when you have a chance, e-mail your musicwish and ship-to information to LynnViehl@aol.com so I can get your winnings out to you, and thanks to everyone for sharing your musical inspirations.
Last week I was rearranging the filing cabinets when I came across the final manuscript for Blade Dancer, my first SF novel published in hardcover. Finding an old manuscript can be like thumbing through an old photo album; you sit down and fondly reminisce about the good old days. I felt a little startled by the date; five years ago I sent off this massive pile of paper to become a book.
Like the StarDoc novels, Blade Dancer sold well, and eventually came out in a mass market edition, which is still in print. Unfortunately, it was published just as Ace took over the Roc imprint, and most of my SF landed on the backburner. BD became a casualty of the move. The seven other novels I had planned to write about Jory and crew went into the Someday File and I moved on to other things.
Not much has happened with BD on the publishing front over the last five years, but behind the scenes, the book slowly gathered a following among high school and college students. These kids began writing to me, and oddly enough there were few demands for more BD novels. They had plenty of questions about the characters, however, as well as the HouseClans, Tarek Varena, journey philosophy, and the fighting arts involved in the story. Gamers, RPGers and graphic novel readers also seemed to like the novel a lot. So did fans of the Highlander television series. Many went on to read my StarDoc novels because of BD.
The continuing popularity did puzzle me for a while, until I realized that Blade Dancer's longevity is due to the willingness of booksellers to keep SF in stock for many months or even years. I see copies of this five-year-old book in stores that don't stock my books in other genres that were published only five months ago.
I can't really say if I will ever publish in print another short story, novella or novel about Jory and the crew. I know what happens to them far beyond the timeline of the novel, of course; I did outline seven more books about them. I wouldn't mind jumping back into their part of the StarDoc universe, either, and it's something to think about as a future project, possibly after I finish up StarDoc. But for now, Blade Dancer will go on as it has for the last five years; one of my quiet, out-of-sight successes.
I will celebrate BD's five year anniversary by drawing five names at random from everyone who responds to this post in comments today by midnight EST, and send the winners a signed mass market edition of Blade Dancer. You can ask me a question as always on Friday, or just throw your name in the hat. Giveaway open to everyone on the planet even if you've won something here in the past, etc.
So what's up with you guys?