Sunday, December 9, 2012

Christmas on the Corner

This post is part of Briane Pagel's
The Merry Christmas To All
(e)Book A Day
Traveling Blogathon
(of Doom!)

Kids measure time in holidays. They're like landmarks when you're driving. Unless you're my wife. She has some kind of weird grid in her head with navigational equipment and... and... data and stuff! Me, I have to know where stuff is to get to places. It's sort of like a big dot-to-dot in my head. But I digress. I'm pretty sure kids measure time like this. Summer (yeah, it's like a really long holiday). School starting (bad holiday). Halloween. Thanksgiving. Christmas. String in some birthdays and lesser holidays, and you have a big Time dot-to-dot for kids.

When I wrote The House on the Corner, I took this approach, although I wasn't thinking of it exactly like this at the time; it's still what I was doing. House begins with the end of school and summer. Independence Day is in there. School starts. Halloween is a big one, and the book ends just at Thanksgiving. The problem is that the sequel, Brother's Keeper (see the tab at the top of the page), picks up some months later. Christmas gets skipped!

For a kid, that would be blasphemous.

I knew last year after I released The First Person Edition that I wanted to write a Christmas story, and I had a vague idea of what I wanted to do with it, but the story didn't come together in my mind in time to write it for last Christmas. But I wanted to, and I thought about it all year. Of course, I've been working on Shadow Spinner, so I kept not doing it.

I've gotten into this weird habit where I work on two projects at once: one on the computer and one in a notebook. Shadow Spinner started in a notebook but has long since progressed to the computer. So I started working on Christmas on the Corner
in my notebook during my kids' ice skating lessons. Initially, I was thinking, "Oh, I'll just write a little 5,000 - 10,000 word short story just to get a Christmas story into the mix." I mean, the whole House universe is perfect for little short stories (and I hope to do a collection of them some day); if you've read it, you should understand why. At any rate, I sat down (metaphorically (and literally, I guess, since I was sitting)) to write and kept fleshing out and fleshing out, and what I got was not a short story but a novella (that's actually bordering on a short novel at 30,000 words). There are some important elements in this that will be showing up later.

I like it.

Oh! So, yeah, this is part of the Christmas Blogathon of Doom!, so I'm supposed to draw a name for a free book from the comments, but I'm not gonna do that. Nope! It's Christmas, and I have this new Christmas story, so I'm just gonna give it away today. Yeah, you heard that correctly, Today, Christmas on the Corner is FREE! You don't even have to comment! Just click the link, and go get it! 

And that's not all! Nope, not at all!

Today is also the next chapter in the aforementioned Shadow Spinner, so you can also go get "Part Ten: The Broken Window"
today and tomorrow for FREE! I know you don't want to miss that! And! AND! because I'm such a nice guy you can also get "Part Six: The Man with No Eyes" and "Part Nine: The Shadow of the Tree" for FREE!, today, too! But those are just today.

That's FOUR different things that are completely FREE! today!

Now, if you'd like to give me a Christmas present in return, you can click the little "like" button when you pick these things up. It would be a great help. And if you really want to give me a present, leave a review. I'd really appreciate that!

To everyone out there:

[Note: if you're here looking for the Cavanaugh blogfest post, that one will be up tomorrow.]


  1. Sounds like you could write a lot of stories about that house. Yeah, can't skip Christmas - the kids would kill you.
    Be back tomorrow!

  2. Only four things free today? I'm waiting for you to say, "Call in the next 10 minutes and we'll double your order! (Just pay separate shipping and processing.)"

  3. I already snagged my free copy yesterday but forgot to mention it. I'm going to try to leave a review after I read it and see if Lord Amazon gobbles it up again, or if they're gonna back off my nuts for a bit.

  4. Thanks for the free offerings Andrew. I will definitely try to Like all of your books on Amazon. You are so prolific!

  5. "How much would you pay for all this literary greatness? $100? $200? TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS? REALLY? Forget our special offer then. Send us $10,000."

    I downloaded all of these for free and now I feel like a glutton.

    Thanks for posting.

  6. Oh, yeah, House is full of little side alleys where several short stories could be lurking. Thanks for the giveaway!


    It is made for you.

  8. Alex: Yeah, I could. But I'm actually hoping to get other people to some at some point. I think that would be a lot of fun!

    PT: Well, you know, it's Amazon and their unwillingness to let me just give stuff away.

    ABftS: Ahead of the curve! And, um, I hope the same.

    Michael: Well, not as prolific as it looks.
    Thanks for the link! I already popped over.

    Briane: I'd settle for $1000, even! I hope you enjoy them!

    L.G.: Lurking is the key!
    You're welcome!