The Vanilla Assassin is gradually moving through the process, slowly but surely edging towards the shelves. I completed what I like to call the ‘final draft’ a couple of weeks ago incorporating some excellent feedback from my naturally talented editor friends. However, I fully expect to have lots more editing to do once the professional editors comb over it in detail. And I’m fine with that. In fact I relish the feeling that it is being read and there is interest in trying to make it better.
Now I am in the process of developing short stories to companion the main book to be sent to the many and varied short story markets. Once I have the ISBN for the coming book I can append that to the submissions, and hopefully they will reinforce each other.
So far I have a short piece where Gustave finds himself in Amsterdam during the first recorded stockmarket bubble, where entire fortunes were gambled and lost on the outrageously inflated prices of tulips. Strange, but entirely true.
Next, I am thinking of sending him to the Polish front, where the Ottoman Turks were having a go (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polish-Ottoman_War_(1633%E2%80%931634). The whole Turkish frontier fascinates me. The Turks besieged Vienna on two occaisions, once before Gustave’s time and the other later in the century – Baron Munchausen’s time, in fact. The border between the Holy Roman Empire and the Ottomans was ‘hot’. For their part the Ottomans were a true super-power. The rot that later crippled them had not yet gone all the way through, though it was in this century that European military technology and methods eclipsed them. During the early 1600’s, however, the issue hung in the balance. The Empire was desperate to keep the Turks out of the war raging within its borders. The incursion by the Transylvanians simply reeks of a Turkish set-up, and I reckon there’s a mission for Gustave in there as well.