Wednesday, February 11, 2015

I have a new 4-book deal!

The announcement was made official yesterday in Publisher's Marketplace so I can now openly talk about this.  My new series will be released through Random House's fantasy imprint Del Rey, and I couldn't be happier!
 

Since that news is now out, I can also announce the audio deal, which was actually inked last year. I wanted to keep it on the low-down until we made it through the print/ebook acquisition process. If you would like to read the official press release put out by my agent, you can read it here.

Here are some details:
  • The books will be released in hardcover with simultaneous ebook and audio releases, a paperback version will follow afterward (I'm not sure of the timing on those, yet).

  • Del Rey has the English print and ebook rights, Recorded Audio has the English audio rights, and now that the announcement is official, my foreign rights agent will start working deals for translations.

  • Tim Gerard Reynolds will be the narrator for these books. I had three publishers vying for this series, and for each I had only one requirement...Tim had to be the narrator. The publisher I went for values both mine and Tim's work, and even sweetened the deal by kicking in some extra income for Tim.

  • The audio book producer, will once more be Recorded Books, and they will be put into a special program, which will mean a much larger library distribution than the Riyria books.  More on this at a later date.

  • Release dates are still being worked out, but the first book, Rhune is tentatively set for Summer 2016.  That sounds like a long time, but really it'll only be a year from when I'm able to supply them with a "final manuscript." More on this, and the timing of subsequent books, in tomorrow's post.

  • The fact that these books are being published by Random House and not Hachette isn't because of Amazon/Hachette dispute last year. Although I can't deny that being with the biggest publisher in the world, who has more leverage wasn't "part" of the decision.

  • The fact that these new books aren't published by Orbit/Hachette is not an indication of dissatisfaction between the two of us. Like the audio books, I had one requirement for this new series. I wanted to "take my career to the next level" and this meant a hardcover release. I think Orbit was right to put the Riyria books out as trade paperbacks, but I had no interest in doing that with The First Empire Series.  Sometimes a writer's vision for their career doesn't align with the publisher's. There is no harm or foul in such determinations. Fortunately, other publishers agreed with my vision.
I'm sure I'll have more posts about this deal, and what it means for the First Empire series and my other projects, but these are the high points that I wanted to get out today. Stay tuned for more!


24 comments:

  1. Just awesome! 2016 can't come soon enough

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  2. Congratulations! To quote Emperor Palpatine, "I shall be watching your career with great interest!"

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    1. Doh! Better keep some eyes in the back of my head ;-)

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  3. Best news! I'm happy you fought for Tim Gerard Reynolds, he's an awesome narrator.
    I agree with Alexis, 2016 can't come soon enough.

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    1. I so agree. To be honest, though, it really wasn't much of a fight...it was "Do this, or no deal." All of the publishers said "No problem" right away. If they hadn't responded that way I would have produced the audio through ACX and hired Tim directly. That's how important it was to me.

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  4. This is awesome! Congrats! But now for the obvious question: Isn't this series five books, not four? Is it just harder to get a five book deal without the first books proving themselves?

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    1. You are correct, there are five books. At the time I sold the series to Recorded Books it was 4 so that is how many the bought. As for Del Rey, their "sweet spot" is three books, but they liked the series so much they committed to four. Given the amount per book they were paying, 5 would have been a LOT of money to put on the line for something that hasn't come out yet, so they kept it at 4. At some point, I'm sure we'll sign over the last book. But I'm not overly worried. If for some reason they decide not to release it, I can always self-publish the final volume. Either way the story WILL get out there.

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  5. That's awesome!!!! Couldn't happen to a better guy!

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  6. Such awesome news! Your first series went from a random discount table pick up to damn I can't put this down! Very much looking forward to the First Empire!

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  7. Big congrats, I am really happy for you!

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  8. This is really great news and I am looking forward to reading & reviewing them (came across the news on a Reddit thread and wanted to comment here, too)

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  9. Excellent news, and well deserved! I absolutely cannot wait to have TGR read Rhune to me! If your past works are any indication, Michael, I'll be falling in love with one or two new characters next summer. :-)

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  10. Fantastic news for reader and listener alike! And so glad you got the deal you wanted. You certainly deserve it.

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  11. Fantastic news for reader and listener alike! And so glad you got the deal you wanted. You certainly deserve it.

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  12. Wow! I can't wait for the release! The books sound amazing, roll on 2016! :)

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  14. As a long-time fantasy reader who prefers to stay away from most mainstream series these days, this looks to be something I'd really enjoy. I also really admire your commitment to getting your work out there in the cutthroat world of modern publishing, and the diplomacy with which you handle it. It bodes very well for your work, I think.

    Edwin @ Clicks In Motion

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