Of everything I’ve published, this is one of the ones I’m most proud of. I’d known Miya for years, and we’d become friends long before we started working together; in fact, by the time we did, she had already gotten this published.
That story is longer and more complicated; perhaps she’ll write about it on Hot some day. In the meantime, I’ll tell it as I know it:
She had become part of a passionate community of writers with an online forum that had hosted a contest, and she won a publishing contract with the people who maintained that community (and a publishing company on the side). That was The Writer’s Coffee House.
That book was The Changeling’s Champion.
Not long afterward, TWCS signed another author named E.L. James. Yes, that E.L. James.
And 50 Shades has nothing on Asylum. I often joke that Random House might have gotten Fifty Shades, but I got the better book from the more talented author.
Asylum began its life as The Island. A trilogy of novellas — “What Once Was,” “What May Be,” and “What Will Be” — about love and lust and devotion, brilliant in both its heat and its execution. When Miya and I started working together, we wanted to bring that out even more. She came up with a new title for the series overall, and as I was re-reading all three books to figure out how to tie them together, visually and thematically, I came up with a visual idea that stripped out everything non-essential and highlighted the core of her story.
I mocked up initial covers, noting that we could easily change the imagery but I wanted her to see the spark. I didn’t give her any other info or commentary; I didn’t want to, because I wanted to see if it hit her as viscerally as I felt it.
So we dropped the “What”s and called it the Saga it is.