Wednesday, October 2, 2013

NIGHT OF CAKE & PUPPETS!

Hi all! So there's some news I've been sitting on for months, and I'm so happy to finally be able to tell you about it! Back in the spring I took a tiny break from DREAMS OF GODS & MONSTERS to write a novella ... about Mik & Zuze! It was so much fun. All along, I've wanted to tell this story. In DAUGHTER, I tried to find a way to work in the meeting of Mik & Zuze, but it was just way too off-track from the urgency of the narrative. And then in DAYS I kind of snuck it in, when Karou tells Ziri how Mik & Zuze met (it's chapter 63: Luck Friction):


     "Well, since she was too afraid to talk to him, she drew him a treasure map. She hid it in his violin case when he was performing--they worked at the same theater, but they'd never spoken--and she left early that night so she wouldn't see him get it. In case he got all pained-looking or something, you know, and she just couldn't take it. She'd already decided that if he didn't follow the map to the treasure, she would just never go to work again and that would be the end of that." 
    "What was the treasure?"
     "She was." Karou laughed. "That's Zuze being shy. She won't talk to him, but she'll make herself the object of a treasure hunt. Right in the middle of the map was a drawing of her face."


Originally I had Karou tell him a slightly longer version of it, but I scaled it back, knowing I'd like the write the full story some time, and that time came! Introducing NIGHT OF CAKE & PUPPETS, the story of that night, that treasure hunt, that first date!


US cover

UK cover

I love these covers. Thank you publishers! I only wish they were book-books that I could hold and pet. It's an e-novella and come out November 26; you can pre-order it at Amazon and B&N (in the US;  for Amazon UK go here). I'm not a reader of e-books, so I don't know how else it might be purchased, or how to support indies while buying e-books, but I'll find out. 

The offical announcement and AN EXCERPT can be found HERE. (YAY!)

It's funny, the treasure hunt idea is something I've been wanting to use for a WHILE. In my earliest efforts at cracking DAYS OF BLOOD & STARLIGHT, before I found and struck the proper [dark] tone, I actually had Karou invite Zuze to the kasbah by way of a treasure hunt she planted for her in Prague, with the final clue being inside the coffin at Pestilence in Poison Kitchen. It was terribly fun, but there was a big problem with it: Karou would never invite Zuzana into danger, and the kasbah and the chimaera army were certainly that, and also, Karou hardly had time for such hijinx! 

It's funny, looking back, how dumb I was about how to start DAYS. I tried to recapture the spirit of fun and magic that I had enjoyed so much about writing DAUGHTER, but I gradually realized that it could never ring true, considering the situation I'd set up for myself. DAYS had to be grim.  

Which just made it all the MORE important to make sure Zuzana found her way into the story, because her levity was so deeply needed. But the fact remained that Karou wouldn't have ever considered inviting her, so I had to have her figure it out for herself, and that was fun in its own way. Monty Python sleuthing and all! 

But the treasure hunt idea stuck with me, and this was the perfect place to use it. 

Also, for something a little different, NIGHT OF CAKE & PUPPETS is in first person. I've played around with first person before but I've never written an extended piece in it, and never for publication. The viewpoint switches back and forth between Zuzana and Mik, all in the course of one evening, and it was so dang much fun to write. Would that writing could always be such a delight!

I can't wait to get it out into the world, occupying nebulous electronic space, impermanently, on e-readers ...


Hope you enjoy it! 





18 comments:

Melinda Jane Harrison said...

Pre-ordered it. Can't wait! Now I've got to prove I am not a robot! Laughing.

Anonymous said...

As an avid e-book reader: e-books ARE permanent..they are forever in my library; I can access them anywhere - and anytime. I'm envious of young people who can have their life's book collection kept forever as e-books: imagine accessing that book you loved when you were 12...instead of being upset with yourself for giving away 5 boxes of books when moving away to college or upset with that friend who never returned that one book... looking forward to both Night of..and Dreams:-)

Connie Onnie said...

I looked to see if was on indiebound but did not see it yet. Very excited to get a little fix.

Stephanie Ingrid Sarah Kristan said...

Laini, we adore your work, and we can't wait to read CAKE & PUPPETS! Thanks for sharing the story behind the story. :)

Laurence King said...

Oh what a delicious surprise, Laini! Not to mention something to entertain us while we wait (impatiently) for Dreams of Gods and Monsters. Can't wait to read it!

Claire said...

Will it be available in Taiwan? It's been nearly a year since Days of Blood and Starlight and I haven't read it (not available on Kindle, bookstores don't carry it, can't pay shipping fee...) and I'm desperately hoping it will be available soon!

InfiniteWinter said...

Wahh you read my mind! I was hoping something with Mik and Zuzue!!!

So excited!!!!

tone almhjell said...

The doll ballet in DOSAB is one of my favorite scenes ever, and Zuzana is one of my favorite characters ever, and I can't wait to spend a whole novella with her!

Love the process insight. Yes, it's remarkable how some ideas just stay with you. If they can't get your attention one way, they'll try another. Much like cats, really.

Adore the covers, too, and I agree - they're so pretty, they should EXIST. Here in Norway, there's a publisher that releases novellas and shorts as "singles," slim, slim books to be sold in special single stands, for instance near the counter. Sort of like music going back to vinyl, but with simple packaging, no huge machinery. And there are so many absolutely lovely e-shorts now, by so many brilliant authors. I wish the idea would catch on.

Lyssa Tyrell said...

I actually properly squealed, like the total fangirl that I am, when I saw this post. I can't wait. This is so exciting! I absolutely loved Zuzana so I'm incredibly happy that I'll be able to read this story ^_^

whatsontheshelf said...

I love Zuzana so much and she is definitely one of my absolute favorite secondary characters ever, so seeing this story for her is incredibly exciting. Can't wait to read it!

Vyki @ On The Shelf

Jacklin updegraft said...

OH my goodness I am so excited for this book! I loze Zuzana! I am so happy she gets a story even if it's a short story! Although I like the U.K. cover better than the cover for the U.S.

Anonymous said...

Ahhhhh I am BEYOND excited for this! Zuzana story! Treasure hunt in Prague! Even the TITLE - Night of Cake and Puppets - meeeep! *short circuits*

And I love the insights into your process. They are so so helpful and reassuring to me as a writer. Thanks so much for sharing them with us!

Anonymous said...

You weave such imagery with your words it makes me want to cry... You don't find that with many writers... Thank you

Angela Noelle of SK said...

Brilliance! If we can't have the Eretz prequel, I'll happily lap up a novella. Nom nom nom.

Ines Caranaubahx said...

Oh man, I hope it will be puplishes in german too, that would be amazing *-*

Abbie Bryant said...

I was so excited to hear about this!!! I was wondered if and when it was coming out in a physical book? I would love to add it to my collection and reading books on the computer hurts my eyes.

Unknown said...

I really want to know what happens with Karou and aKiba. Do they get to actually be together? Or do they have kids? I feel so lost not knowing

Madison Murphy said...

I really want to know what happens with Karou and aKiba. Do they get to actually be together? Or do they have kids? I feel so lost not knowing

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