Short

No, not me. I’m plenty tall enough, thank you very much.

I’ve been thinking about the Night and Day short that I mentioned here. I also talked about it a little on the 24–Hour Show when chatting with rgr.

What’s it going to be?

It’s a look at a couple of parts of Charlie Welles’s life from before the beginning of Night and Day. Parts that I have mentioned, in passing, in the first three books in the series, but haven’t gone into in any great detail because, hey, who wants to go off on some walk down memory lane right in the middle of story – you (and I) want to know what happens next, not what happened years ago.

The two parts that I will focus on are the last few days before Welles was scooped up and dropped into an internment camp, and the last few days of internment before he was dropped back in the city.

I’ve talked some about both – about the good old days in 83rd Street Robbery-Homicide in Night and Day and Bandit’s Moon, and how Charlie hooked up with Joshua Thomas in Camp Delta-5 in Bleeding Sky. This unnamed short would go into both periods in more detail, with more immediacy. Everything is as it was, except You Are There!

So in the first part, we’ll see Charlie as he was – a plainclothes officer in Robbery-Homicide, as things rapidly begin to fall apart in the city. The war between humans and vampires only lasted about 5 weeks – December 24th to February 1st. And probably only four weeks of that was actual conflict. As I see it, No-Name City fell somewhere in the second week or third week, and it was quick. So those last 3–4 days will be a hellish downhill ride, for Welles and his compatriots at the 83rd Street station. It’ll give me a chance to show some characters you already know (Ray Holstein, for example), characters like Becca James (who you’ll meet in Bandit’s Moon) and some that have been talked about, like Vince Cunningham, the Robbery-Homicide skipper – all as they were, not as they are in the series. And we’ll also get a look at the city as it fell, what that was like. (Here’s a hint – it wasn’t pretty…)

In the second part, we’ll see Charlie as he was after two and a half years of internment, along with a general look at what it was like in Camp Delta-5 – there were almost half a million people in the camp – what was that like? (Another hint – bad…) More importantly, we’ll see Charlie’s relationship with Joshua Thomas, how they interacted, how and why they became partners in Night and Day Investigations afterwards. Joshua is an interesting character to me (a lot more interesting than Sam Spade’s partner, Miles Archer, in The Maltese Falcon, which provided the situational inspiration), and you really don’t get to see a lot of him in Night and Day before he’s murdered. So we’ll get to know Joshua a bit more (and if I ultimately decide to do Poison Blood, even more – the Joshua before he was a vampire, since he’s one of the few characters from the Night and Day series who is in both).

As I see the short at this point, it will be four chapters or so in each part – so roughly 12,000–15,000 words in each part, and around 30,000 words total. A short. A novella of sorts. (I continue to be horrified by people who put out 25,000 words, call it a novel, and sell it for $2.99. I guess I’m just old-fashioned that way…)

Why do this?

First and foremost, because I want to explore these things – as anyone who’s read this blog knows, each book is a journey of exploration for me as well as the reader. I often only vaguely know where things are going. That’s part of the fun for me.

Second…well, it’s promotional. As I mentioned in that previous post, this isn’t something that I plan to actually sell as a standalone. I could, but I’d rather go another way. So the first way to get it, the best way for those who’ve been already buying the series (bless you!) is to sign up for the mailing list. There’s a form in the sidebar. I haven’t done much with the mailing list, and I don’t intend for it to become a spammy “buy my books” thing. Contact will be infrequent, and hopefully will have interesting or fun things that you can’t get anywhere else. Like this short. Those on the mailing list will get a link to the short in mobi (Kindle), epub (Nook and others) or pdf format. I may even do a limited edition paperback version and give away a couple of copies to mailing list people.

The second way to get it will be through the boxed set that I’ll be releasing in June when Blood for Blood comes out. It’ll be the first three Night and Day books as a boxed set, and I’ll include the short in that as something you can’t get any other way (well, you could join the mailing list, but there’s no point in getting the short if you haven’t read the books).  The box set, which will sadly be electronic only, will go for $6.99 or $7.49 or something in that range – a little cheaper than buying the individual books, and hey, you get the free short too!

So that’s where my head is at now. The rest of me is there too, but you don’t need to know about that.

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