A short update on my debut novel, HAG OF THE HILLS

Greetings, hails, hilsen!

As some of you have been following me, I am in the final stages of my debut heroic fantasy novel, HAG OF THE HILLS, the first book in THE BRONZE SWORD CYCLES duology.

The process has been slowed for a variety of reasons – the first is that I am a Ph.D candidate at the end of my dissertation writing process. What that means is that, during the day, I am writing my Ph.D dissertation! I am aiming for a delivery date of April, which means I am quite busy. A dissertation – in my case – is a monograph, or a book. So I am writing a non-fiction book while writing a fiction book.

As one can guess, I am prioritizing my Ph.D. thesis. I hope. At least, if my supervisors are reading this, I assure you that I am!

That is not to say that I do not have HAG OF THE HILLS nearly finished.

The stages have been:

  1. Write the book. I wrote, and edited, both books of the duology between 2014-2019.
  2. September 2021: Cover design! The cover design has been completed for months now, but I have been holding out on a cover reveal. It is honestly gorgeous, and I must say, worth every penny.
  3. August-November 2021: Copyeditor! This is complete. My copyeditor rejigged quite a few paragraphs, and gave me a wonderful review. He is currently working on the second book now.
  4. December 2021-January 22: Proofreader! Here is where we are at the moment. Half of the proofreading is done, and the other half should be complete. From what I have seen, not much is being changed, so it should not take too much time for me to fix what the proofreader has done.
  5. Formatting: December-January 22. This should go relatively quick, I am just waiting for the last rounds of proofing and off it goes.
  6. Available for pre-order: The book will be available for pre-order at the end of this month.
  7. ARC readers: I have already two ARC readers lined up thanks to discord! I also have a friend of mine who is an author NOT in my genre who will be so kindly to give me an ARC. I will begin to ramp up the call for ARC reviewers soon, so if anyone here is interested, let me know.
  8. Release February 2022! The book will be available as an ebook on kindle, and then “wide” as a paperback and hardcover.

There has been a slight delay because I decided to include 30 pages of the second book in the duology, THE LION OF SKYE, at the back of the first book.

I will begin ramping up my social media campaign. I have amassed circa 2000 followers on Twitter, which is more than I have ever imagined, but once the book is on pre-order, I will be diving headlong into instagram, facebook, tiktok (I know, I had to vomit a bit), and begin making youtube videos. And of course, I will be blogging more!

The final step will then be to delve into ads.

All the while I have been working on an unrelated project, a Viking Age archaeological podcast with a fellow Viking Age specialist!

So, busy year for me…

Until next time.

-Ryder