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Goodbye LJ!

 I'm consolidating my electronic footprint, and will be shutting down this blog. Go to murrain.net for further blog entries on writing and science fiction.
I have hemmed and hawed about this for years, now. I started writing my novels in the "Casitian Universe" series back in 2006, and I have now completed the trilogy. I spent a few months looking for agents and publishers, and decided, given my penchant for all things open, as well as the massive, amazing changes happening in the publishing business, that I would strike out on my own. I decided, at first at least, to self-publish all three novels in electronic form only.

The first novel, called "The Casitians Return" will be published on April 8, 2011. You can find an excerpt online. It will be distributed on Amazon, Google, Apple iBook, for the Barnes and Noble Nook, and on

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Darned Query Letters

 I'm working hard at query letters for agents. I've had some help, which is great, but it's not helping me get them out the door. And how to really summarize a novel in a few paragraphs? I think in long form, so squeezing it down into such a short space feels like a challenge.

And I guess, something in this process must be work. The writing didn't feel at all like work. Wish writing query letters didn't feel like work. 

Here's my current synopsis of the first novel:

In The Casitians Return, life on Earth changes forever when aliens of human origin arrive with a startling new mandate, and the technology to enforce it.

The aliens are here — and they are us. Or rather, they are human beings from another star system who have come to reunite the two branches of humanity, whether we like it or not. These aliens (who call themselves Casitians since their planet, Casiti, is casi tierra, or “almost earth,”) are mandated by the Galactic Council to make earth a more enduring, peaceful and sustainable community — not so much for people, but for dolphins, the true galactic citizens. Predictably, many Earth humans resist, and the Casitians unveil a surprising solution: Earth humans are given the option to migrate to a whole new planet.

Follow Marianne, a whip-smart programmer, Joel, a SETI scientist, Ja’el, a Casitian woman of mystery, and a host of others on this engaging exploration of what might happen when humans meet … ourselves. Who stays on Earth, who goes, and how it all unfolds forms the central plot of this 90,000 word novel, the first of a completed trilogy.

We'll see how it goes...

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