The State of the Blain Address

I figure if the President of the United States can give a State of the Union address (when is that, anyway?) I can give a State of the Blain address. Welcome to 2015 and all of that jazz. I haven't even written 2014 on any important papers for this year yet. I'm on a roll!

Let me begin with my home life. There are some turbulent things going on in my day to day life. On Friday, it was so bad that my husband kicked me out of the house with a gift card we'd received for Christmas, told me to go shopping, and was glad to be rid of me for a few hours. I don't need shopping therapy often, but the news had me pretty much in tears, and the husband figured I needed some retail medication–and the best place to send me to do that? The book store. So, off I went with his blessings.

It was something neither one of us were at fault for. Both of our general ability to cope was hammered fairly hard. It happens.

I came home with five moleskine journals. It was really that bad. They were also 20% off. How could I resist that?!

My stress levels were so intense that I, in my dire need to escape reality, destroyed Earth.

Okay, so I wrote a quarter of an entire novel over the weekend. Here's what it is about:

Project Zeta is a slipstreaming YA apoc Science Fiction exploratory story.

Here is a sneak peek about the beginning of the book:

Some believe the Earth has had enough of humanity and is trying to renew itself. Others believe their planet is dying. Either way, humanity faces extinction due to increased volcanic and earthquake activity.

Meet Dr. Athene Dellis, a fifteen years old geologist with a doctorate in Crystalline Mineralogy and an associate's degree in Volcanology.

When she was five, she foresaw an earthquake that killed hundreds of thousands in Africa, one of the Earth's last safe havens. Her attempts to warn others resulted in her being blacklisted, never to permitted membership to one of the twenty-four Projects.

Then her dream changed to the final destruction of Earth, where her sister's shuttle is destroyed in the eruption triggering the end of all life on Earth.

She has survived so she can change fate and see her sister live, even though it means she's doomed to be among those left behind.

Athene's story begins the day the Earth dies.

I'm really in love with this story for far too many reasons to list. It is one of the novels I am determined to somehow add to my publishing schedule for 2015.

Since the thought of my ‘out of our direct control' home life problems make me stressed, I'm skipping them. Screw them with a stick.

Let's talk books. Because books. Do I need another reason?

I didn't think so.

I've already mentioned Project Zeta, so I will begin with the novel I will be publishing next: Storm Surge.

SS paperback a

This is one of my favorite covers. Kalen and Breton's story continues. I am hoping to have the novel to my editor on February 15, 2015. After that, I expect approximately two months until completion–if that. Depends on how long it takes my proofing editor(s) to work once my primary editor is done hacking the novel to bits.

Two months seems like a long time, but it's not. It'll be frantic. While I'm waiting on Storm Surge's editorial work to be completed, there is a lot of other work to be done!

Next up is a science-fiction project. I haven't decided which one I will working on completing next: Zero, Evolulite, or Project Zeta.

Project Zeta is getting a following… but Zero is nearest to completion. Honestly, this also depends on how much work I get done on Project Zeta in the next few weeks. I might do something crazy and split my time half and half between Project Zeta and Zero. This would dump two novels on my editor's lap at around the same time, but she's flexible and is already aware this might happen.

After the first round of Science Fiction happens, next up will be The City of Clocks. This has been on the back burner for too long. I have a great deal of work to do on this YA, but I'm eager to get it done. Once again, it already has a gorgeous cover by the talented Chris Howard.

COC cI'm really trying to clear out the old projects I've been sitting on for a while. Something I've always loved about The City of Clocks is the fact that it's a YA–something that I don't usually pursue. (Yet I'll be releasing two of them this year. Two!)

The deal with my YA is that they aren't really written for teenagers or those who are in the same age bracket. I never really considered the age audience. I wrote stories I am interested in–the marketing and audience element was never a factor in these two novels. But the main characters are, by definition, in the YA bracket.

The City of Clocks is misleading–it's a fantasy with clocks. It's not really even a proper steampunk. There's only one location in this world with clocks like this at all.

It takes place in the same world as Requiem for the Rift King and The Fall of Erelith. Weird, huh?

So, here's a recap of the to-do list so far for this year: Storm Surge, Zero or Project Zeta or both, The City of Clocks.

Potentially four novels. That's insane. It's about to get even more crazy. Because if I'm going to be sniffing the crazy glue, why not snort it all the way, right?

Next up will be the remaining science fiction stories–I am cleaning my entire SF docket this year. That puts the count up to five.

Now, here's where things get complicated: I am sitting on a story currently entitled Rider of the Sun Horse. The draft is done (I think. I might add another POV. I might not. I will find out when I transcribe it.) I don't have the cover for this or the three science fictions. If the cover for Rider of the Sun Horse is ready, it will get shunted in line after SS / CoC. Why? Because I will have the cover!

That makes six.

Number seven is Royal Slaves.

Royal Slaves Cover Art RJ BlainYou guessed it. Another book with a cover. Hi, book seven!

I have stated Royal Slaves… but I'm not all that far into the novel. So, while I am hoping to squeeze this one in, I would need an epic burst of inspiration and productivity to finish it on time. Truth be told, I am expecting 2016 for this one–but who knows? Because I'm doing so little client editorial, my writing productivity has skyrocketed. I have some client work I am working at, but I'm averaging 2 hours a day on that. The rest of my day is going to my books–or real life stuff.

It has made a huge difference.

Ever since I have significantly cut down on client editorial work and focused on my writing, my battles with depression have gotten much better. I haven't had an notable episodes in months. Stress levels (with the exception of this week's idiocy) have been incredibly low. My productivity has also increased tenfold.

I guess it's true what they say. When working for yourself and only yourself, doing something you truly love, you work better, you work harder, and you work happier.

Here's to a stellar 2015.

Oops, I punned.






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