My latest novel, ASANAS (out June 16, Arachis Press) is not a Romance in the typical genre sense. Anyone who might expect it to follow the established rules for that sort of book would surely be disappointed. But there is romance in the story, to be sure.
It is a novel of relationships, first and foremost. There is no unrelated plot on which to hang those relationships, as in my Cully Beach novels (SHAPER and WAVES), which are, ostensibly, 'Crime' stories. In truth, ASANAS is not too different in tone from those two books, though told from a quite different point of view — the Cully Beach books are first person, with a male narrator and ASANAS is third person, as seen by two female protagonists.
Admittedly, there are some Romance-like touches here and there. I was playing just a tad with the brooding, solitary male romantic lead when I created the character of Jason Bruce. Jay, however, is not a major player in ASANAS but someone on the periphery of the narrative most of the time. If and when a sequel appears, he might just move up to a larger role.
And there is a certain amount of mooning over lovers. That is unavoidable. Also unavoidable, in that the main protagonists are female, is that it is women doing the mooning. Not that the guys aren't too, you understand, we just don't have the opportunity to see much of their inner workings. I do not like and do not use an omniscient voice in my books — we only see into the heads of our POV characters and even there I make no attempt to explain their thoughts. They have to do that themselves. Not surprisingly, they sometimes get them wrong.
ASANAS weighed in at 76,500 words, a pretty good length for a book of its sort. Of course, I used as many words as were needed to tell the story and did not work toward a certain target. I will admit I expected it to turn out around the 70,000 word mark. I've gotten pretty good at guessing how much will be needed!
The files for the print version have been sent off to the distributor and I should have a proof copy in hand reasonably soon. Once that is approved (let's hope it is!) the book can go into distribution. We'll hold off a little while before uploading the ebook version so both will be sent out to retailers around the same time. One could actually buy a print copy right now from Arachis Press but I would advise waiting until I've had a chance to look at it.
So it's time for me to move on to other projects. I am developing two novels at the moment. Or developing one and writing one might be more accurate. The one being written is a fantasy, THE JEWELS OF THE ELEMENTS, sequel to THE EYES OF THE WIND. The one I'm messing about with, working on characters, settings, plot developments, is a mystery set at a folk music festival. It will probably be titled THE DEPOT BLUES. Maybe I'll finally get some recording done, too. And work on the web site. And...well, plenty to keep me busy.