10 Years Ago
If you’d asked my teenage self what I dreamed of for in the future when I hit my 50’s, I probably would have said either owning a DeLorean (Back to the Future) or a Lotus (For Your Eyes Only). Or being a full-time author. At least one of the three came true!
Ten years ago, my world changed when I gave away free copies of The Wretched of Muirwood on Kindle for just a few days and then fans (many of you) discovered my books for the first time. A few months later I was offered a six-book deal with Amazon Publishing and the rest is…history. I’ve written many more books since then and been able to have experiences that would have blown the mind of my teenage self (like being on a panel at Comic Con with my hero, Terry Brooks, on my b-day!)
My writer’s journey has been a rollercoaster with ups and down. Recent ups has included Knight’s Ransom being named a Wall Street Journal bestseller. My publisher also sent my family to all-you-can eat Sushi to celebrate reaching over 5 million readers. A recent down — my TV deal for Kingfountain isn’t going to happen. It’s a long story, but let’s just say that the Film and TV rights are now back in my hands. And I’m grateful, to be honest, because things were feeling off for a while.
Successes and disappointments are part of this business and I’m grateful, every day, just to be along for the ride. It has been awesome to see reader reactions to Fate’s Ransom this last week. Ending a series is so important to me, especially how it lands with readers, so I’ve been waiting with anticipation. Not all my books have landed spot on, but I do my best and work hard with my editors to make them satisfying.
I’m also super excited for the launch of my newest Muirwood series, The Dawning of Muirwood, which comes out in May 2022. It’s been so nostalgic to be back writing again in the world of Leerings, Aldermastons, and the Medium. I will be doing a Facebook Live this week (watch my FB page) and giving away a few advanced copies of book 1, The Druid to a few lucky winners.
Last by not least, I also wanted to announce that my line-up for 2023 will be a little different. Actually, a lot different. Many of my books have been inspired by realistic and intense dreams. Well, I had one last June that I just couldn’t get out of my mind. I spoke to my editor about it and wondered how she felt if I wrote a series that *wasn’t* epic fantasy (I still have many ideas for more fantasy novels–have no fear!), but I wanted to try a new genre, to see if I could challenge myself to write something completely new. Thankfully, she was totally excited about the idea and I’ve signed a contract with A-Pub. I’m not going to reveal anything else right now (except a picture below which will be an enormously vague clue), but I have started writing it and wow…it’s been so fun!
Welcome 2022 and hopefully it will be a step in the right direction. I will be teaching again at the Storymakers conference in Provo, Utah in May. Hope to see some fans there this year!
P.S. I have two relatives hospitalized with Covid (my wife’s uncle is on a ventilator right now and her aunt is in the ICU–additional prayers would be helpful!)
11 thoughts on “10 Years Ago”
Diana Murrill says:
Thanks so much for the heads up. Not sure how I feel about you switching genres but writers must challenge themselves or they can grow stagnant. Fates Ransom wrecked me… like Snapes death in Harry Potter, Raithes death to create a Gilarabrywn in Sullivan’s Legend of the 1st Empire…had to put the book down but couldn’t, kind of wrecking. In my opinion, out of all your books, it was the finest. I look forward to going back to Muirwood and can’t wait to see what you decide to write if outside of the fantasy genre.
Greg Garguilo says:
I’m casting a vote the genre will be Historical Fantasy, in the style of a (shorter page count) “The Walking Drum” (Louis L’Amore) or Tuchman’s “A Distant Mirror”.
Of course, I could be COMPLETELY wrong. Please don’t confirm/deny, I’ve played my hand, let’s see what cards the other’s hold before the dealer turns up their own.
Christina G says:
Prayers for your family!
Sue Olp says:
I’d guess at least inspired by history, Incans or Mayans maybe?
Amy June Harding says:
Praying for your family. I can’t wait to read your new book. I can’t put it down and then I’m sad when I have finished one. Love your passion for writing. Thank you!
Denise Evers says:
Archeological series of some sort/ your books have been totally therapeutic for me. I love listening to them especially when I’m on my long walks and even when I’m working, (drywall finisher)wild to think I become very focus at what I’m doing, and am inspired. Thank you
Sending prayers for your family. I for one am a huge fan of yours and I always wait with enormous anticipation for all your new releases. Its funny how I stall reading the last few chapters because I don’t want to end the book! Again, I Will wait patiently for whatever you bring to the table. Best of luck on this new adventure in writing. I cannot wait!
Hi Jeff, just wondering if I can put any optimism on the fact that Richard Armitage has registered his film company as White Boar Films, complete with Loyalty Binds Me as his motto?
If he’s not already working on his King Severn mannerisms, I do hope he will be soon.
Jeff Wheeler says:
I wish that were the case! Richard Armitage was born the same day as Richard III and he and I share a love of Sharon Kay Penman’s book THE SUNNE IN SPLENDOUR which is what made me such an ardent fan of that era. His production company has nothing to do with Kingfountain–sadly.
Brian Berkovitz says:
ah, and I was excited for a TV series, but if it wasn’t meant to be…..
Christine Walton says:
Hello Jeff, I’ve just finished Silverkin and wondered if you are going to complete the story for us anytime soon? I’m a huge fan, I’ve read all your books mostly by audible so I can listen whilst having my chemo. You’ve been a distant companion throughout my treatment, thank you, your tales of wonder and magic lifted me out of the gloom. Bless you. Christine