Once upon a time, Blood of Ice and Cerulis: Short Story Collection were free to access: Cerulis on the blog, and Blood of Ice as a “reader magnet” to tempt people into signing up for an email list.
As soon as I decided to go hard into the indie author business thing, I made the decision to monetize all my content, primarily because having multiple books to my name made me look more “established.” Following some recent introspection, though, I find that I no longer connect with that motivation, nor do I feel it makes sense for the type of content Blood of Ice and Cerulis are.
Legacy of Flame was written as a standalone, with Blood of Ice serving almost as a prequel and Cerulis as supplemental content for readers who wanted to know more about the continent/world. Blood of Ice was my first work under this pen name, and I shared it mostly with people I knew as I worked to release Legacy of Flame; technically, the two books can be read in any order. Cerulis was more complicated: some of the stories fringed the events in Legacy of Flame and Blood of Ice, and later ones contained spoilers, so the content seemed to belong to readers who had already consumed one or both books. I consider all three books part of a somewhat untraditional epic fantasy series, where Legacy of Flame does the majority of the heavy lifting and thus gets the more traditional publishing treatment.
In the end, though, a reader of Legacy of Flame does not have to engage with Blood of Ice or Cerulis to understand and enjoy the beats of the big, epic, high-stakes story. Those shorter works are targeted toward readers who thirst for more characters, settings, worldbuilding, and lore. And personally, I’m more comfortable sharing that kind of supplemental content for free.
So. Blood of Ice will be available, free to download, on my homepage beginning August 2nd (when Amazon’s vice grip of exclusivity expires). Cerulis will follow on September 1st. And I’m really pleased to be getting back to sharing stories in this manner. I hope you like it too!