A few things about the books, all of which are connected.
Firstly: the hardcovers have been removed from sale for the time being. If you have an order being processed it will continue, but no new orders can be made on Amazon. But don't worry, they will be returning soon in a much better and more affordable form.
There may also be... something special in them.
Over the past couple of weeks the eagle-eyed may have noticed the cover images of the Armada Wars books changing. This was A:B testing of new designs. The current favourites are in the image gallery on the home page.
The covers have been standardised across the range, and some have had their artwork tweaked. The interiors have also been spruced up using new software, which has also been used to create new interiors for the paper editions. There are now no discrepancies between Kindle, paperback, and hardcover, guaranteed — they all come from the same source file.
I Dream of Damastion and A Storm to the Savage have the new interiors, and their new covers are being processed now. Both Kindle and paperback editions are on revision 1.5 for both books. They are the example of what the main sequence novels will look like once the interior files are ready.
And because of the new layout, the page counts have been reduced, making both of those paperbacks cheaper.
'Places' Section Updated
The Universe section of the site has received a makeover today, primarily focused on the Places section.
Updates have been made to canon as a result of these edits. Most of the details below have been in notes and plans, some even elsewhere on this site (e.g. on planetary profiles), but few have been specified in books — although for some that will change in WGSF.
Whom Gods Shall Fear is well on the way, with over half the planned word count finished despite the fact that only a third of the chapter spine is filled out. This might actually be the one book where a lot goes in the editing stage! Or it could just end up being double the length, guess we'll find out.
The book is planned to arrive later this year. When it does land it will end the main story of this series, and conclude the Great War of the Shaeld.
In preparation for this release, the People section of the site has been updated. Almost all characters who will be in WGSF are now marked as such on their bio pages. Those where it is uncertain at this stage if they will be written in have been left without the link, as has one character in particular whose appearance is intended to be a sickening surprise.
Those of you who enjoyed the introduction to the crew of the Leo Fortune will be pleased to hear that they will be making an appearance. We will also encounter Hywen, last seen in A Storm to the Savage, and Doctor Berris, who played a small role in I Dream of Damastion.
In fact... many characters who have only had small moments so far will be turning up to watch the galactic bonfire, and some of them will be bringing marshmallows. The theme of 'consequences' may well play a significant role in this finalé...
You read that correctly: hardcovers!
With the release of A Storm to the Savage comes a smorgasbord of new hardcover editions. Every single volume in the Armadaverse can now be bought in a weighty, hardback edition with a very nice matte cover! Typesetting is consistent between all the volumes, and they all contain the latest versions of the texts.
Go to the Books section to get direct links to your most local Amazon region, for your favourite volumes!
2021: The Year Ahead
Let's get this out of the way immediately — we're not talking about 2020.
2021 has arrived, and as you've probably noticed already things are back in full swing in the Armadaverse.
This post is a round-up of the plans for this year. Don't forget that there are two mailing lists for the Armadaverse. It's recommended to subscribe to one of these, because there's a good chance that the Armada Wars brand will abandon mainstream social media in the near future.
Releases Planned for 2021 and Onwards...
I am now resuming my original plan of interleaving the novel releases with the novella releases, albeit with the following changes:
My aim this year is to knuckle down and keep up a steady pace. I Dream of Damastion is already available for Kindle, with the paperback proof on its way to me even as I type. I am planning to have A Storm to the Savage ready for a release soon, then all efforts will be focused into Whom Gods Shall Fear.
You may have noticed the artwork for IDOD changed in the past week, and the same iconography and cover design has been used for ASTTS. It will also be used for Forge Ruinous, although I have not yet chosen an image for the central glyph of FR's cover. Feel free to suggest your thoughts in the comments below.
Steal from the Devil — the Redux
I've said before that there are aspects of Steal from the Devil which I now find embarrassing and or problematic. As a debut novel, although many readers do enjoy it, one can only really say that it was released way before it was ready.
I've previously floated the idea of making some quite large changes. On those occasions I have received mostly negative responses, with people saying they would rather it was left just the way it is.
I've decided to split the difference. As well as being generally tidied up (see below), SFTD is going to get some enhancements, clarifications, and — of course — a thorough stylistic edit. I want to be very clear that nothing will change substantially as far as the plot goes. What will happen is that characters and situations will get expanded text, so that it is clearer what is happening, and the consequences further down the line are more understandable. I will try to bring the style of the book into line with the sequels, without losing any of its weird atmosphere.
I also aim to trim just a little fat — this means the teasers and references that ultimately went unused as the story found its own way through the sequels.
If you have strong feelings about this, then please do say so in the comments.
Over the years, with me having to update the same stories in various alternate files, discontinuities have crept into the published materials. These include vanishing custom fonts, different typographic conventions, and in some cases even material differences in the actual words of the books.
There is also the MAGA-cap wearing elephant in the room. A poll was conducted across Twitter and Facebook, and the overwhelming majority favoured a retrospective change to the lore where that acronym is concerned. The conventional air and ground assault forces will have to be called something different. Perhaps I just solved it there, and CAGA will be the replacement*. The point is that I've had it up to the eyeballs with people assuming that 'MAGA' is a nod to Trump, despite it obviously having nothing to do with him, so I'm just going to change it.
"AGRO" won the polls (standing for 'Air and GRound Operations'), but I think I will save that label for a team of specialists in a future story :o)
For all of those reasons, every single Kindle edition and paperback is going to be overhauled over the next couple of months. With the exception of I Dream of Damastion, which from today has the latest typography, corrections, and defined lore, all the updated versions will be released together. I will do my best to convince Amazon to push the Kindle updates out to existing customers, but only the changes to Steal from the Devil are likely to be considered significant enough to justify doing that.
You Can Now Pre-Order IDOD
You don't have long to wait now before the next volume arrives from the Armadaverse: I Dream of Damastion is now available as a Kindle pre-order!
It's been a dry couple of years for Armada Wars fans, and this expansion episode should hopefully slake your thirst prior to the release of the final full novel in the current series.
Set during the events of The Ravening Deep, IDOD takes a sideways step from Caden and the others, and follows a different set of characters as they discover and resist Voice on a smaller and more claustrophobic scale.
Character Profiles, Next Releases
The People pages under the Universe category have now been completed for all characters seen or mentioned so far in the Great War of the Shaeld series. This literally includes every named character, from civilians seen in passing to each and every member of Tanker Regiment seen in the last book.
[Edit: since this article was first posted, new index pages have also been added for all characters by surname, all the women, and all the men.]
This feels like a great achievement, since there are over 100 named characters, many of them linked to various events throughout the four existing novels and beyond.
The "upcoming characters" page has now been removed, so the new characters who will be arriving in Perseus Aflame will be added to this site when the first book from that series — On Vicious Wing — is actually approaching its release date.
Some characters from the first of the upcoming GWOTS-era novellas, however, do have partial profiles on the site already. These are:
That novella is of course I Dream of Damastion, which should be released before the end of the year and may help to tide people over until the much-delayed release of Whom Gods Shall Fear. The protagonist of another novella — A Storm to the Savage — also now has her own holding page. Watch this space.
For serious fans of the Armadaverse, it's highly recommended that you take a deep dive into lore by reading the background and insights into your favourite characters!
IDOD Plot Details!
The book page for the upcoming novella I Dream of Damastion now exists, and with it comes a summary of the plot.
Pre-order links and so on will arrive in due course, and you can expect the cover art reveal to happen some time in the next week.
The Next Steps
The Kindle launch of The Ravening Deep is just over a week away, so it's a good moment to have a quick rest and talk about what else is going to happen over the next few weeks and months.
The Ravening Deep — Paperback
First and foremost, within a fortnight the paperback proof copy of TRD should be received and approved. It will then be on Amazon within a day, and linked to the Kindle version's product page a few days after that.
Don't forget that the wildly inaccurate "estimated page count" for the Kindle version of TRD will be automatically corrected within about a week of the paperback and Kindle versions being linked. For your reference, the page count of The Ravening Deep is 542 pages, not whatever tiny nonsense number the product page gives on launch day (it's been showing 355 pages since the final eBook file was uploaded, which is clearly wrong.)
Don't forget you can pre-order The Ravening Deep for Kindle to benefit from 1/3 off the standard price!
Extensive Wiki Updates
Development work for The Ravening Deep took up a huge amount of time, and as such the updates to the official Wiki for List of the Dead fell by the wayside somewhat.
Throughout December, there will be a concerted effort made to get existing articles updated for the text of volumes 2 and 3, and to add the new articles for characters, places, tech, etc which are introduced in the new book.
Some topics relating to The Ravening Deep will of course be delayed for a while in order to prevent significant spoilers.
I Dream of Damastion — Schedule
Keyboard-bashing for IDOD will begin literally on January 1st 2016. It is due for a late February release date, which will be announced at the end of January.
Some development work has been done already, and the following details can now be revealed exclusively to this site: