I'll be honest. The Books of Khepera are not going to appeal to everyone. Readers feel very strongly about Jamie. They either love him deeply, or they despise him. He doesn't make any apologies for being a vain, opinionated bastard. In many ways he's everything I'm (thankfully) not, so in a sense he exists as my animus. Which is probably why he's never quite going to go away (even though Ash is stealing hearts left, right and centre). He's part of my story.
The man isn't completely without redeemable qualities, however. Despite being hideously flawed, Jamie does good. And perhaps there's a little bit of Jamie in all of us. We lie to ourselves about our flaws and weaknesses. Sometimes we redeem ourselves. Other times we set ourselves up for spectacular failure.
On Friday I got smacked upside the head with the premise for a fourth book. This kind of sucks because book three, Khepera in Shadow, isn't done yet, and won't be for a while since I'm supposed to be writing Thanatos (the book that follows Inkarna), have a secondary world fantasy half on the boil, and am in the midst with edits for Camdeboo Nights. Then I still got a bee in my bonnet and wrote a short Jamie story today, just for shits and giggles. Not to mention that I'm also editing an anthology of dark fantasy entitled Dark Harvest, and I'll be starting on edits for the third Bloody Parchment anthology early 2013. Oh, and I need to prep print files for some of my shorter works... jawellnofine shut up already.
So, what's on the cards next besides surviving year-end at the Sisyphusian day job? I'm finishing Thanatos so that it can go through to beta. Then it's time to revise Khepera Redeemed. I've decided the best course of action is to alternate between revising old work and finishing new work. If I'm lucky, I can get both done before the end of this year. However, I'm not holding my breath.
Now, if you haven't read Khepera Rising, you can go get it in ebook format here (the first 20 percent is available as a free download, just by the by) and you can buy the dead tree version here. One huge-ass big disclaimer. This is the first novel I ever completed. (We'll not talk about all the aborted attempts I've mercifully burnt on a funeral pyre at the bottom of the garden.) Khepera Rising is not a perfect book (what book is?) but as my first published work, it gives an idea to my readers of where I've started. For a first novel, it's still something I'm proud of. During the rebooting phase I itched to get stuck into some developmental edits, but resisted the temptation.
This is my writing in 2007. The novel was sold in 2008. It was first published by Lyrical Press on December 21, 2009. Dear Dog I've learnt a lot since then. Khepera Rising is a crazy poke at Cape Town's underbelly and the religious intolerance of fundamentalists we all love to hate. And Jamie's a total dick and he does some really stupid stuff. But he also does some pretty awesome stuff too. You've been warned.