After the novel’s over

by Kate Paulk

So, I wrapped up the first draft of ConSensual today.

It’s the sequel to ConVent – which is one first, as this is the first time I’ve written a novel as a sequel. It’s also going to need rather more editing than many of my drafts, partly because I wrote the first half about 2 years ago, then the rest in the last few months (long story. Complicated, messy, and not entirely mine to tell, so nyah. You get to wonder). Also the final naming of a lot of the “color” hasn’t been set – because ConSensual, like ConVent is set at a convention, I have to be careful that the only recognizable people in there are the ones who gave me permission to Tuckerize. Everyone else is either made up, blended, or a mongrel caricature of both methods.  And that’s just the editors…

Er, sorry.

Anywho, just as a teensy celebration, here’s a wee snippetses from ConSensual.

Nothing says you’ve left normal reality like walking into a hotel lobby and seeing a Clone Trooper chatting with a Sith Lord. The sign on the back of the Clone Trooper’s armor, ‘Come to the Dark Side. We have cookies. Tonight. Room 1226’, was really just corroborating evidence.

The lure of Dark Side cookies notwithstanding, I took myself to the reception desk and got myself signed in. I’ll give them this: the staff didn’t seem at all upset by the strangeness manifesting in their hotel. Maybe it’s a southern USA thing, but none of the southern con hotels I’ve been in have ever been anything less than welcoming.

Well, unless the convention was sharing space with one of the more fundamentalist religious conventions.

ConSensual being one of the bigger southern conventions, I doubted that would be an issue. It was held in one of those sprawling southern cities that takes about five times the land area of a northern city to hold the same population, and usually has so many hotels it’s not hard for any one event to make an exclusive booking.

Whatever they do with them outside the convention season isn’t my business.

I can never keep the hotels straight. This one was one of those modernist faux-elegant jobs with lots of shiny metal and glass, a multi-level gallery area where all the ballrooms and convention areas were, the inevitable bar and house of bad coffee, and the tower containing the actual rooms off to one side.

Since it sat in the middle of one of the less salubrious parts of the city — or at least it looked that way coming in on the airport shuttle — I expected there would be some interesting late night encounters.

I dropped my backpack off in my room: as always, several levels away from the party floor. I’d been able to book the northern side of the hotel this time. After the last con, where a murderous lunatic had crushed garlic into the air vent and opened the curtains while I slept, I was a little paranoid about sunlight and other things.

Yeah, I’m a vampire. I drink blood. Most of the rest is myth, but I am violently allergic to garlic, and while I’m old enough to go walking in the sun that doesn’t mean I like it.

10 comments

  1. Hehehehehehe….I have it in my inbox, waiting to be read after I finish Sarah’s DSR. Yes, I’m a beta reader and proud of it. BWAHAHAHAHA!

      1. Francis, just think, when it’s published, you can read the polished, clean and shiny version, without any of the messy bits Amanda gets to help me get rid of.

        Beta-ing isn’t quite as cushy a job as it seems…

    1. This is a series that is likely to last as long as I do, assuming that there are enough people who want it. I’m keeping each one self-contained for that reason.

      At least, I hope so.

  2. Wait a minute. You’ve got a mongrel caricature in there? Now, is that an oblique reference to droopy ears, or are you making fun of Snoopy? Werewolves have friends in strange places, you know…let’s be careful about who you make fun of, okay?

    1. The werewolves all have impeccable pedigree. The agents and editors on the other hand…

      1. Oh, good. I’m glad we got that straightened out. Y’a know, sergeants, agents, editors, lawyers, politicians… there’s a whole subspecies that we are pretty sure had no mothers or other parents as we know them. I have to wonder why we don’t recognize that they have been living among us for so long… not really human as we ordinarily think of it. If you crush them, do they bleed green?

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