Credit for the line-art of this lovely cover goes to Sorrel, who also works as my color blocker. She did a fantastic job! Sorrel is an individual with many skills and I highly recommend hiring her if you’d like to work with someone who’s not only talented, but punctual, hard working, and a great communicator. Drop me a line about your project and I’ll introduce you!
The coloring is by me, and I’m pretty proud of how it turned out!
If you missed it during the break, I’ve added a new section to the website on reader suggestion called “The Story So Far”. It has detailed summaries and links for each chapter, so if you want a quicker way to catch up than going through a massive archive dive, that’s the place to do it!
Thank you for all the great feedback on feedback day. Especially folks that shared criticism that they were worried I wouldn’t want to hear. It takes a lot of courage to point out flaws, because not every artist will process them well. I admit, it took me a while to fully digest everything, but you all had some very on-point observations and thoughts. It helped a lot, and it’s already had a major impact on my plans for moving forward. I hope to only get better with each chapter!
One of the big mental shifts that resulted from this feedback day is the realization that I’ve got to stop thinking about LeyLines like a novel and instead think of it like several seasons of television. Each chapter isn’t really a novel chapter. It’s an episode. It needs to feel fairly self-contained and address a central theme. That central theme needs to tie any A or B plots together emotionally and in the narrative, because otherwise jumps between alternate plot lines get jarring and hard to follow.
This TV Series mindset has also drastically shifted a lot of my plans for the series as a whole. I’ve taken a hard look at the sequence of events I was planning and the characters I was going to introduce and realized that some of them needed to be cut out until later seasons, and others wouldn’t keep well stretched thinly over multiple arcs, so they needed to be bumped into season one.
When it comes to having a season theme, I’ve now accepted that season one is pretty hopelessly tangled, but I can keep theme in mind for future seasons to make everything feel more directed and streamlined. In the meantime, I can go through all the tangled threads I have and work on straightening them out and tying them off where appropriate, so I can clear space for new and more interesting developments.
With that in mind, this chapter focuses on Zhiro, trying to deal with all the different emotional shocks he’s had thus far. Not just in recent memory, when he got banished by the Keepers (or so he thinks…Dream Eater’s actually the one that wrote the letter), or made a bargain with Dream Eater, or almost dying at the hands of Kali’s tribe, but also his side of what happened in the Market between him and Mizha.
(I’m also going to make more of an effort to share related links in the future!!)
If you’d still like to share your opinions on chapter 11, or on any chapter, the feedback day pages are always open. I am eager to hear your thoughts. They help me become a better writer, and I really appreciate everyone who takes the time to help me improve!