MileHiCon 49 here in Denver was a huge success!

I got to see old friends, create new ones, and participate on some wonderful panels.

From it I had two distinct takeaways. One was that I should begin a blog. Up until now, I didn’t think that I had that many fans, but last weekend told me a different story.

So here goes.

The other takeaway was a heartfelt reaction from a fan. In many respects, it was the best review of my work to date. The fan did not like the demise of Alexander Piankoff in The Children of Ptah and thought that Vesna Gregorieva couldn’t fill his shoes—in so many words. Well, Gregorieva had to start her journey as a character somewhere, and it is my belief that she grew considerably in the next two books: Imhotep and Maat-ka-re. I sincerely hope that my troubled fan will see the same and come to like her.

Which leads me to the entire subject of character building. As an author, it is always difficult to remove a character that you have invested so much time and effort in building. They truly become your friends—R.R. Martin notwithstanding. Yet characters, as people, do eventually pass on. For me, the hardest character to move beyond was the old high priest Meryptah. In many respects, he wrote himself, and as you can probably guess, was a composite of several real people who played a significant role in my life. So it’s no wonder that he played an important part in Joseph Richards’ maturation and development.

Now that both of my series are completed: The Manuscripts of the Richards’ Trust and The Adventures of J.J. Stone, a new project is looming on the horizon. This one as it currently stands is another yarn that takes place in contemporary Egypt. It’s about the discovery of a magician’s tomb. That makes it potentially a mix of Egyptology, magic, and lots of intrigue. As I said, it’s looming, probably to appear in the first third of 2018, and its plot is still in flux.

Finally, I want to say something about fan feedback. I don’t know how many times that I have discussed feedback’s importance face-to-face with readers, but it’s the truth. Authors become better because of constructive criticism. If you have a comment about what you liked or disliked, or a wish for something in particular, let me know. This is how I grow as an author. Many thanks in advance!

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