Friday, March 28, 2008

It Beats Doing the Taxes

I've been procrastinating a bit. All of the tax paperwork is on the kitchen table and we're due at the accountant's tomorrow. So why did I just kill half an hour finishing Richard Dansky's Firefly Rain. Well, because it counts as work.

Firefly Rain is one of Wizards of the Coasts' Discoveries titles. These titles are original fiction not set in one of Wizards' proprietary worlds.

It's always interesting to see a publisher try to break form. Will the publisher try to publish books that will appeal to their current audience, or seek an entirely new audience all together? If you take my client, Ed Greenwood, and look at his Forgotten Realms books and then at his original fiction, like Dark Lord or The Kingless Land, you'll find that he was clearly trying to appeal to his current fans with similarly themed material. But there's nothing remotely Dungeons & Dragons about Firefly Rain, leading me to believe that Wizards is trying to expand beyond the gaming fiction market and into the general horror, science fiction & fantasy markets. And reading this book did, as an agent, enlighten me quite a bit about the kinds of books they are buying. I might just have to look up an old client of mine and see what he's been working on and if he's between agents, because I think he might be someone they'd be interested in reading. Then again, he's never written for them and in these situations they often like to use writers they know and give them a chance to break out of the gaming-fiction pigeonhole and find a wider market. Still...where is that phone number?

Before I make the call, though, I confess I was surprised to see that this book got a starred review in Publishers Weekly. The writing wasn't as strong as I've seen in recent books that I've read and the plot was about as simplistic as you can imagine, with only one twist at the very end that I didn't see coming. Still, it was an engaging read and I was certainly curious to see where it would go. I'd recommend it if you are holed up during a gloomy day and looking for a light read.

Z

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