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Weekly Recap

Hi, friends! I’ve been radio silent for the past few weeks dealing with an avalanche of deadlines and a tyranny of promotional events (including for the stellar A Tyranny of Petticoats anthology, in which I have a story)! So this weekly recap will actually be for the past few weeks. Mea culpa.


The Past Few Weeks In New Releases


The Past Few Weeks in Cover Reveals

(I know I missed a TON, so I apologize!)


These Past Few Weeks in Internet Reading

Moneyball for Book Publishing – Reader habits data and what it could mean for how books get produced down the line.

What Authors Can and Can’t Control in Traditional Publishing

On writing a “middle-finger book” from Nova Ren Suma. I feel this deeply.

“I just don’t identify with the character” – an in-depth look at how editors and publishers perpetuate homogenous identities and experiences in children’s literature, and how they can create lasting and meaningful diversity.


These Past Few Weeks in Writing

(ie, why I’ve sucked at blogging lately)

Finished line edits on A Darkly Beating Heart! This was a mad, exhilarating sprint and I’m in such a better place now about this book.

Finished up a slew of freelance work.

Loads and loads of fun promotional events for A Tyranny of Petticoats!

Write some fun bonus material for a forthcoming promotional effort for The Witch Who Came In From the Cold. More information soon . . .

Great progress on Ghosts of Grimley, my first foray into middle grade.

I’ve finished the outline and I’m full steam ahead on my next YA project, which will also be my Camp NaNoWriMo draft for April.

…And finally, I’m writing a Valentin POV story as a gift for everyone who signs up for my newsletter on or before April 19th, to celebrate the paperback releases of Sekret and Skandal! (There’s loads of other goodies in the #SekretSkandal giveaway too, so don’t miss out!)

P.S.: If you’d like to keep up with me and all my wild writing pursuits, plus use a great project tracker for your own writing, join me on My Write Club!

The Past Few Weeks in Reading


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The Witch Who Came In From the Cold Launches Today


Guys, I am so excited. Today marks the series premiere of The Witch Who Came In From the Cold, an episodic storytelling journey several years in the making. When Max Gladstone and Julian Yap, the founder of Serial Box, first approached me about participating in a serialized story, I was already way on board, but then they started describing the particular project they had in mind: Witches. Espionage. Cold War. Secret magical wars. All my happy-makers. “Of course,”  they said, “we still need some help shaping the villains . . .”

Fast forward several hundred email brainstorming sessions and one epic, gourmet food-filled weekend encamped in Julian’s condo with Max, Ian Tregillis, and Cassandra Rose Clarke, plus the far-too-cool Margaret Dunlap to help coach me on the showrunning process. I’m absolutely amazed by how well this season has come together. In some instances, we all seemed to go through a mind-meld where we independently converged on the same plot points. In others, each author concocted something truly magical and witchy totally on their own that none of the rest of us could have possibly devised. Max’s sense of worldbuilding and wit; Ian’s precise, devastating language and atmospheric sorcery; Cassandra’s killer dialogue and careful characterizations. I love every single episode, and can’t wait to see where we head with Season 2.

From the creators of some of today’s most ingenuitive fiction comes this online serial in 13 weekly episodes. Lead Writer Lindsay Smith (Sekret and Skandal) brings her experience writing on foreign affairs in DC to bear at the head of the writers’ room comprised of Ian Tregillis (the Milkweed Triptych), Cassandra Rose Clarke (Our Lady of the Ice), Max Gladstone (Bookburners and the Craft Sequence), and Michael Swanwick (Stations of the Tide).

While the world watches the bitter rivalry between East and West fester along the Iron Curtain, the Consortium of Ice and the Acolytes of Flame continue waging their ancient war of magic. Kept to the shadows, this secret contest crosses the lines of politics and the borders of nations with impunity – the intrigues of spies may know clear sides but the battles of witches spill out over all. Tanya Morozova is a KGB officer and the latest in a long line of Ice witches and sorcerers; Gabe Pritchard is a CIA officer and reluctant Ice recruit. Enemies at one turn, suspicious allies at the next, their relationship is as explosive as the Cold War itself.

The first season is ready to launch, and Serial Box is giving away the pilot free. If you love it, then you can subscribe via the Serial Box app to get the weekly episodes delivered directly to your device of choice (audio, too!). Or you can purchase each episode individually on Amazon and iBooks. And each week, we’ll continue the conversation on the Serial Box blog with behind-the-scenes intel and much more.

From the ashes, friends . . .

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Weekly Recap

This Week’s Releases


Cover Reveals


Tristina Wright discusses allowing male characters to show emotions in YA.

Riley Redgate wrote about female self-hatred in fiction and life, and the need for confident girls.

Jennifer Garam on how to keep writing when no one gives a shit.

And I shared my Further Thoughts on Outlining.


Accomplished in Writing

  • Added a chapter to rhymes-with-“fey hairwolves.” Revised outline from here to the end of the book (which is staggeringly close!).
  • Added a chapter to sithbaby trashfic. Plotted secondary trashfic with co-conspirator. Reveled in trash. Glorious trash.
  • Filled in the remaining scenes for the final episode of The Witch Who Came In from the Cold, Season 1! Just in time for Wednesday’s launch!
  • More progress on A Darkly Beating Heart revisions. Almost ready to start second pass on these edits.
  • Progress on freelance work.

Favorite line written: “We aren’t the only ones with monsters beneath our skin.”



Winter Storm Jonas has buried husband, dog, and me under a couple feet of snow for the foreseeable future, but we still have power, so I’m not seeing the downside?

Snow sheltie. #dogsofinstagram #sheltiesofinstagram

A photo posted by Lindsay Smith (@lindsaysmithdc) on

I’m taking the opportunity to catch up on books, movies and TV shows that I’ve missed out on over the past . . . ummm . . . five months or so. Whoops. Reading Six of Crows and Last Song Before Night; watching The Martian and Agent Carter, Season 2. Wondering how many days I can get away with working from home next week, given that our car is currently little more than a bump beneath the dense blanket of snow.


Next week: everything you ever wanted to know about writing a serialized fiction adventure with some of the awesomest names in SFF, and probably plenty you didn’t! Subscribe to The Witch Who Came In From the Cold now so you don’t miss out on kickboxing KaGeBezniks, socialist socialites, spell-casting Brits, one extremely magically tormented CIA officer, and a station chief who once killed five four six men with a shovel in the Korean War.

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Weekly Recap

A weekly recap of reading, writing, and random nerdery.

New Releases I’m Excited For

Amazing cover reveals and book announcements!


(Oh, hey, that last one’s mine!)


Tristina Wright sold her “queer teens in space” saga to Entangled Teen.

Poe Dameron is getting his own comic book series.


Recommended reading:


Writing things accomplished:

  • Smoothed some emotional inconsistency in A Darkly Beating Heart. Still revising.
  • Completed sample chapter of potential YA proposal. Loved the spooky dark unstable exchange between heroine and villain. May have hugged my laptop on the train.
  • Started drafting Act III of rhymes-with-“fey hairwolves” project. Time to start answering questions (at least a few of them) about how all this wacky science fantasy works!
  • Realized I’d written myself into a corner on the dumb sithbaby fanfiction. Reaffirmed why yes, seriously, I need to outline. Beat head against wall for a bit.
  • Wrote lots of promotional material for The Witch Who Came In from the Cold and the A Tyranny of Petticoats anthology, both of which launch soon!

Still mainly in revising/promotional mode, so my 2016 word count isn’t doing too hot so far. February promises to be much better, however.

I wrote a detailed post on how I drastically improved my drafting speed and writing output in 2015, and people seemed to like it! Maybe you will, too!


Other Tidbits

The AMPAS announced their 2016 Oscar nominees and, with #OscarsSoWhite you need sunscreen, I’ve almost entirely written these awards off. Some smart people said smart stuff about it: Tu Books’s infographic on the (lack of) diversity in Oscars, incredible performances by non-white actors that were snubbed, responding to AMPAS’s “conspiracy” tweet. I will confess a tiny thrill that Mad Max: Fury Road (one of my top movies of 2015) got several nods, though none for that amazing soundtrack that fueled at least 50% of my 2015 writing time.

Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) hosted Saturday Night Live last night, and the Undercover Boss: Starkiller Base skit was everything I’d hoped for.

That Dragon, Cancer, an independent game created by a man coping with his own son’s terminal illness, released this week. I haven’t played it yet, but with the cancer-related deaths of greats David Bowie and Alan Rickman this week, I’m going to have to stock up on tissues to tackle this one.


How’s 2016 treating you so far?


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