It's been a while since I did a straight blog post. I've been busy reading and editing and its time to report on the progress.
The most important items are obviously the next books on Ven Zaran. Book 5 is in the editing phase. It will be available for pre-order in October with a target release date of November 15. If the editing goes smoothly that will hold true. Normally I make a mockup cover by this stage to give my cover artist some ideas, but I haven't done that yet. And it looks like the temp title I put on it feels too at home to allow another title to take its place. Book 5 is titled One Corner of the Sky.
One reason for my deadline in getting book 5 finalized by the start of October is that I want to get an early start on book 6. I still haven't tied down the story yet, but the characters are forming and I have a place to start and place to end. Enough to get started, but I much prefer to have it a little more fleshed out than that. It makes the editing so much easier.
The reading has been going well. I've actually edited some for some fellow authors (which is why I haven't posted any reviews on them) so I've done quite a bit of reading. I'm about to start on Poul Anderson's Technic Civilization Saga. I may not get past the first two volumes. I feel Brian Daley's Han Solo books calling. Old friends that I haven't visited in a while. But any reading I do needs to be done before October. I want to devote my full attention to book 6.
I suppose I should give a spoiler about where the Zaran Journals are going. War is coming. Not your normal sort of war between two political powers, but one between two economic powers. The conflict will spread across the galaxy, but for Ven Zaran, one corner of the galaxy will become a hot spot of activity that he can't stay out of. Book 6 will be a prequel to that war.
This war will only encompass three novels, but it will include a number of short stories/novellas that relate. It will not be part of the Zaran Journals. I have already published one of the stories, A Captain At War in Edge of Hyperspace. More will follow.
And for those who think I will be spending forever in this Galactic Confederation universe, I do have three other settings in mind, set in different times and different places. They are in development right now, but one is close to being ready. It all depends on which story demands to be written first.