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Author: Myke Cole

Drizzt Do’Urden Simply Won’t Stop Adventuring: Myke Cole on Learning to Love Serial Fantasy

Drizzt Do’Urden Simply Won’t Stop Adventuring: Myke Cole on Learning to Love Serial Fantasy

Gemini Cell-smallMy name is Myke Cole, and I have a hard time with serial fantasy.

Yes, that’s right, I’m admitting it right up front. I’m wading into the hornet’s nest and making my confession.

More than three books in a series and I start to nod off. At five, you’ve pretty much lost me. It’s happened to me again and again and again. In A Song of Ice and Fire, I honestly don’t really care what happens after Dance. I followed Bernard Cornwell’s Richard Sharp through twelve books before I finally decided that, no matter how awesome his further adventures might be, I couldn’t get excited about them. Daniel Abraham’s The Widow’s House is the fourth book in his absolutely stunning Dagger and Coin series, and I know I’ll get to it… eventually.

It’s happened to me time and again with comic book series. Fables, Hundred Bullets, Sandman and on and on and on. I reach a point 5 or 6 or 10 trades in where I just sort of throw up my hands.

And all of the above examples are for good books. The kind of books that resonate and transport, the kind of books that make you want to give up writing because you’ll never be in the same league as that author.

For years, I’ve hid my head in the company of other fans, bit my tongue and kept my opinions to myself. Because Brandon Sanderson wound up rounding out The Wheel of Time series at fourteen books. Because Drizzt Do’Urden simply won’t stop adventuring, because fans LOVE long serials.

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Selling Shadow Ops: Control Point

Selling Shadow Ops: Control Point

shadowopsFor my next trick, I’m going to give everyone a bunch of totally contradictory advice.

My novel Latent, which eventually became Control Point was ready for prime time (i.e. good enough to win the support of the biggest agent in the business) about 6 months before I sent it to my agent. I lost those months to a miasma of self-pity, low self-confidence and ennui.

In the end, the only reason I got up the gumption to send him the manuscript was that I was heading off to Iraq and I didn’t want to get zapped and never have him see the thing.

I’ve told this story before, but I told my agent not to tell me what he thought of it, figuring that his response (positive or negative) would distract me from what I need to be doing (like fighting a WAR).

Of course, he gets the manuscript, loves it, and spends the next four months sitting on his hands waiting for me to come home.

Add that to the six months where I was too scared to send it to him and I delayed my initial publishing deal by almost a year.

Here’s the point: You have to have guts.

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