Introducing TalysMana

By Holly Lisle

So I’ve discovered something interesting.

Writing a complex 300,000-word novel while writing a complex, massive novel revision course is turning my brain into mush.

This is not fun. Sort of hurts, actually.

So in the shower this morning, I was kicking around the issue—put the question to myself of how to define the problem, got my definition in about ten seconds. “You have too many critical balls in the air.”

Brainstormed the solution, that took about 20 seconds.

For the duration of writing How To Revise Your Novel, I need something simpler—a single-thread fantasy, something intended to be short (I’m thinking 50,000 words), something lighter, something that isn’t a centuries-spanning epic, and most importantly, something that doesn’t have a huge amount of performance pressure attached.

So THEN I started playing around with what I could do instead for my Write A Book With Me novel.

That took longer.

But by the time I got out of the shower, I had this VERY cool idea. A multimedia collaboration with my daughter. She does handmade jewelry, and she’s really good. And in the shower, I’d had these images of fantasy artifacts and fantasy jewelry with magical properties, and a contemporary crossover story of an artist who discovers that within every human being lies a second world, as real as this one, incredibly beautiful, but deadly dangerous, only reachable by a few.

And I got the title. TalysMana.

So I pitched the idea to my daughter—“you design real pieces of jewelry based on the story I write. I’ll send the story to you a chapter at a time as I write it, when you have a few limited-edition pieces of the jewelry done, you send out the chapter via e-mail with a link to the artifact or jewelry related to that chapter. We’ll both autograph the pieces. When we’re done, I’ll put together a little signed, numbered, limited print edition of the book with all the pieces you created as full-color illustrations, and we’ll both sign that, too.”

She loved it. We’ve never gotten to work together before, and I think this will be a blast. (Plus, she’s the one who has to do all the hard stuff.)

It’ll be fun, it’ll be something special just for the folks who read my weblog and newsletters, and it won’t have the pressure attached to it of me doing something I’m intending for pro publication.

So that’s what I’m doing tonight. Putting together my cluster, calling down lightning, doing my Sentence, doing my Sentences Lite for scenes…

Fun stuff.

Becky and I will get a link put together pretty soon where you can get the chapters as they come out, and buy one of the pieces of her jewelry if something strikes your fancy.

Meanwhile, Dreaming the Dead is on hold for the duration of the writing of How To Revise Your Novel, because having my brain melting out my ears isn’t good for anybody.

Especially not me.

No words that count tonight. But stuff that will lead to words very soon. šŸ˜€

How about you?

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