Jason Cosmo: From Royal Chaos to Royal Crush

Greetings, Loyal Reader!

Happy 2013! I trust you enjoyed the holiday season. Before I go on, thank you for your support in 2012. It was the best year for sales of the Jason Cosmo books so far, and I also appreciate the positive reviews, comments, and other messages I received from many of you last year.

Later this year, I will — at last — publish the next book in the Jason Cosmo series, Royal Crush.

DM_RoyalChaos

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Dirty Work Cover Art Mystery – SOLVED!

Greetings, Loyal Reader!

One of the greatest mysteries of the Cosmoverse was recently solved.  For more than a decade I have been on a quest — well, an occasional quest — to learn who painted the cover illustration for the 1992 Roc edition of Dirty Work. Now, at last, the answer is revealed!

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Smashwords Summer Sale until July 31

Greetings, Loyal Reader!

Noble Cause (2010) by Dan McGirt

July means the Smashwords Summer Ebook Sale is here again (or Winter Sale for Loyal Readers in the Southern Hemisphere). Yes, you truly can beat the heat with an ebook–try fanning yourself with a Kindle! Works pretty well, huh? Just don’t get too close to the pool.

As usual, several of my titles are included in the summer (or, again, winter) sale fun:

25% off (enter code SSW25 at checkout to get your discount)

50% off (enter code SSW50 at checkout to get your discount)

100% off … yeah, FREE!

Only at Smashwords, only until July 31!  If you’ve already bought these books — Thank you! To share the fun, please leave a review and/or recommend to a friend.

Best regards,

Dan McGirt

 

Differences between Jason Cosmo and Hero Wanted

Greetings, Loyal Reader!

I noticed someone came to my site via a search for “differences between Jason Cosmo and Hero Wanted” and thought it might be worthwhile to address that topic (again).  My first novel was Jason Cosmo, published in 1989. In 2009, I released a revised version of the book, called Hero Wanted(2009).

Jason Cosmo Omnibus book cover

Jason Cosmo Non-Trilogy

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Jason Cosmo: What comes next?

Greetings, Loyal Reader!

With Noble Cause written, what comes next in the world of Jason Cosmo? I’ve been giving this some thought and I want to share with you my plans.

Jason Cosmo

  • Housekeeping Measures: I have a little Jason Cosmo spring cleaning to do. This includes getting Noble Cause and the Jason Cosmo Non-Trilogy Omnibus into the Amazon Kindle Store, some tweaks to this website,  and a few other odds and ends.
  • Solving the Dirty Work Cover Mystery: See my last post. I really want to know who painted the cover for the U.S. edition of Dirty Work. I sent an email to my former publisher, Penguin, to see if they can tell me. If that doesn’t work… Continue reading

Who did Dirty Work?

Greetings, Loyal Reader!

With Noble Cause now written and working its way into the various ebook stores, I have the breathing room to solve one of the great mysteries of the Jason Cosmo series: Who painted the cover of the 1993 Roc edition of Dirty Work?

As longtime Loyal Readers know, Dirty Work was the third volume of the classic Jason Cosmo Non-Trilogy. Richard Hescox provided the cover illustrations for my first two books, Jason Cosmo and Royal Chaos. The late Josh Kirby did the covers for the UK editions of all three books, published by Pan Ltd. But it remains a mystery to this day who painted the cover for Dirty Work.

Sadly, Roc did not provide a cover credit in the book itself. That was the first place I looked. Some fifteen years or so ago, a prominent fantasy artist I happened to meet whilst holding a copy of Dirty Work took a look at the cover and said, “Oh, that is _____. I’d know his style anywhere.” And I wrote the name down on a scrap of paper, long since lost to time, and also made a more “permanent” note on my computer, long since lost to a hard drive crash. Yeah, I’m not very good with names.

But the time has come to solve this mystery. Someone suggested it may have been the awesome Walter Velez. But I asked Mr. Velez, he checked his records, and it was not him. I emailed the fantasy artist I once bumped into to ask if he might again identify the artist simply from looking at the art. I don’t know if he will have time or inclination to reply. Or if my message even got through his spam filter. So I also sent the below letter to the generic email address of my former publisher Penguin USA/ACE/ROC:

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Jason Cosmo: Noble Cause is finally here!

Greetings, Loyal Reader!

I am excited to announce that I have finally finished work on Noble Cause, book 2 of the Jason Cosmo series. Noble Cause is now on sale at Smashwords, in formats for your Kindle, Nook, iPad or other favorite ebook reader. It will reach Barnes & Noble, Apple iBookstore, Amazon, and other stores in the coming weeks. Since this is also Read an Ebook Week, Noble Cause is 50% off through March 10 — get your copy for only $1.50!

Noble Cause (2010) by Dan McGirt

Noble Cause (2010)

Noble Cause picks up a few weeks after the conclusion of book 1, Hero Wanted, and concerns the adventures of our hero, Jason Cosmo, and his lovely companions Sapphrina and Rubis, in Caratha, greatest city of the Eleven Kingdoms.  You may have read a draft version of the first twenty chapters during National Novel Writing Month, but this is the full, completed novel, 48 chapters in all. And you’ll probably want to start at the beginning even if you read the preview, because I’ve done extensive revision from beginning to end since November.

I’ll say no more about the story for now–just read it! If you have questions or comments (or typos to report–they happen!), get in touch with me by a comment here, or via Twitter or Facebook. I’m on pins and needles to know what Loyal Readers will think of Noble Cause. It has been more than two years since Hero Wanted was published. But the even bigger milestone in my mind — Noble Cause is my first entirely new novel since I completed Dirty Work in 1991. It is also the longest piece of fiction I’ve ever written. But it is now out of my hands and into yours, so I hope you will enjoy it. Meanwhile, I’m going to take a few days to catch my breath, take care of some deferred housekeeping matters (website updating and such), and then dive into my next project! More on that soon.

By the way, all of my ebooks at Smashwords are discounted for Read an Ebook Week. Hero Wanted is FREE this week.  So is Sarah Palin: Vampire Hunter.  See the full list here: Dan McGirt ebooks at Smashwords.

As always, thank you for reading.

Best regards,

Dan McGirt

 

Jason Cosmo: Noble Cause — The end is near!

Greetings,  Loyal Reader!

Loyal Reader Tina asks in the comments a question I am sure other Loyal Readers are asking too–Where the heck is Noble Cause?

A fair question. This book has been long in the writing. How long? It depends when you start the clock. By one measure, at least twenty years. I turned in the manuscript for Dirty Work in early 1991 (thought it did not see print until 1993) and, arguably, have not written an entirely new novel since1 For Loyal Readers who joined us with Hero Wanted, the wait for Noble Cause has been just over two years now. In my own estimation, I’ve been writing this book for about a decade, counting various false starts and abandoned incarnations. I recall deciding to write an “in-betweenquel” set between Jason Cosmo and Royal Chaos sometime around 1999 or 2000.

Noble Cause (2010) by Dan McGirt

Noble Cause (2010)

By any measure, this book is taking me a long time to write. Too long, really.

Part of the problem is I consistently underestimate how long various other projects will take. The basic plot of Noble Cause was set, and large chunks of the book written, by early 2009, when I suspended work on Noble Cause to prepare Hero Wanted for publication. That took longer than I thought it would, but I still expected to push on and finish Noble Cause by year end. I then wrote Rainy Daze, which I thought would be a two week project, but was more like a month.  Same for Sarah Palin: Vampire Hunter and the character profiles and mini-scenes I wrote for Caladon Falls. All of those side projects sidetracked me from finishing Noble Cause, along with the usual suspects of work, travel, and the occasional illness. When I get away from the book for a while and then come back to it, it takes me a while to get back into the groove, to get my head back into the story. That slows things down too. So side projects ate 2010.

This year I made a conscious and knowing decision to again put Noble Cause on the back burner to help my mother Andrea Parnell, republish several of her previous novels: the Gothic romance tales Dark Splendor and Whispers at Midnight, and the Western romance Delilah’s Flame. Okay, yes, I put my Mom ahead of my Loyal Readers. For that, no apologies!

I also decided, belatedly, to release the original versions of Jason Cosmo, Royal Chaos, and Dirty Work as ebooks, both separately and in an omnibus edition of the entire original Jason Cosmo Non-Trilogy in one ebook. That might seem like a no-brainer, but my original plan was to ignore the original versions and only publish the revised and rebooted books starting with Hero Wanted. But Loyal Readers asked for the originals as ebooks, so I took on that project too. I’m glad I did it but, again, it was time-consuming and took me away from Noble Cause.

So, now, we’re staring at the end of 2011 and my Loyal Readers are still waiting for Noble Cause. Well, assuming you haven’t forgotten about the whole thing and moved on. But, if you’re still with me, I have good news.

The first bit is this — even when I wasn’t working on Noble Cause, I was working on Noble Cause. That is to say, even when one of those other projects was at the forefront, I continued to open up the Noble Cause file and tinker with the story…add a bit of dialogue that occurred to me, make notes for a scene to write later, figure out some of the knotty plot points I got stuck on, etc. The book may have been on life support at times, but it never flatlined. And, I believe, it keeps getting better. Tighter, leaner, faster, funnier.

The advantage of  stepping away from the book for a while and then coming back is that it allows me to see with fresh eyes what’s working and what isn’t. I’ve come back from a hiatus and junked entire scenes and chapters because I could now see a better way to move the story at that point.

Which is to say, I believe your patience will be rewarded. Noble Cause is a much better book now than it would have been if I finished it six months or a year ago. Or two years ago. Or five years ago.

Super awesome, McGirt. When can we read it?

Well, my friends, the time is nigh. I’ve blazed through ten chapters so far this month, bridging most of the gap that loomed in the middle of the story. (For those who came in late: I had the first third and last third written some time ago, but the middle was a complete muddle.) That gap is almost closed–three or four chapters to go. When that is done, I will have, for the first time, a complete manuscript beginning to end. With that milestone reached, the next step will be revisions.

Which, fortunately, is my favorite part. So I’ll work my way through the book a few times to punch up dialogue, cut wordy bits, resolve inconsistencies, tie up or snip off loose ends, etc.  Then a thorough proofreading. Then formatting for Smashwords — where the first release will be, followed by Amazon (because formatting for Kindle takes a little longer), and then preparation of the print edition.

How long will this take? I’m always reluctant to throw out a definite schedule because in my mind that pretty much guarantees something will go wrong. But my projection is to finish those last few chapters by the end of October — i.e. “this weekend” — and then get all the revising and editing and formatting done in November. It will be my National Novel Writing Month project — except for me it will be Novel Finishing Month. More on that to come…very soon! Stay tuned.

Best regards,

Dan McGirt

 

 

 

  1. since Hero Wanted (2009) is a revision of Jason Cosmo (1989), it doesn’t count as entirely new. []

Jason Cosmo Omnibus ebook now at Smashwords

Greetings, Loyal Reader!

I recently released an omnibus ebook edition of the original Jason Cosmo Non-Trilogy. This ebook includes the original texts of Jason Cosmo, Royal Chaos, and Dirty Work. The Jason Cosmo Omnibus is currently available at Smashwords in multiple formats, for your Kindle, Nook, iPad, iPhone, Sony reader, Kobo  or other preferred device. Soon to be available at other ebook retailers.

Jason Cosmo Omnibus book cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Granted, if you’ve already read the original series, you may have no need for this Omnibus. But if you don’t already have the ebooks and want to dive right in to the classic version of the series, here you go!

Best Regards,

Dan McGirt

Royal Chaos now in the Amazon Kindle Store!

Greetings, Loyal Readers!

Another quick note to let you know that the Kindle ebook version of Royal Chaos is now available! This ebook incorporates the original text of the 1990 paperback edition of Royal Chaos, with only minor corrective edits. I will, eventually, do a revised (and probably retitled) version of Royal Chaos as part of the rebooted Jason Cosmo series that kicked off with Hero Wanted and will continue with Noble Cause. But, for now, and for fans of the original Non-Trilogy, I give you Royal Chaos for the Kindle.

For new Loyal Readers, a word of explanation. The original Jason Cosmo series consisted of Jason Cosmo, Royal Chaos, and Dirty Work. Then, to put it politely, my publisher dropped the series like a hot potato full of squirmy maggots. I call the original three books the Non-Trilogy. (Because there be three books, but they be not a trilogy.)

If the first Jason Cosmo book you read was Hero Wanted, you might wonder how it fits with these other books? Do they go together? Are they part of the same series? The answer is yes and no. Hero Wanted — as I’ve said before and will no doubt say again — is a revised edition of Jason Cosmo. If you read Hero Wanted, no need to read Jason Cosmo unless you just want to.

Royal Chaos was a sequel to Jason Cosmo. It works as a sequel to Hero Wanted if you want to read it that way. There might be a few inconsistencies because of the revision, but the books still work together.

Now the “official” sequel to Hero Wanted will be Noble Cause (coming soon!) — but no harm in reading Royal Chaos next if you want to. Noble Cause, in fact, is set in between the action of Hero Wanted and Royal Chaos. But nothing in Royal Chaos will ruin or give anything beyond very minor spoilers for Noble Cause. So have at it!

Best regards,

Dan McGirt