The book is done. Well, the first draft is done, which will likely require substantial edits. But, as of today, Gordon and I are free agents. We’re out of contract and are ready for the life of bounty hunting and smuggling.
We had a lovely Halloween. Our neighborhood is mostly devoid of children. Everyone who lives here either has older kids or adult children. We decorated the first year and nobody showed up. After second year, we stopped decorating, because it’s just sad, but we always optimistically buy candy and keep the lights on.
Yesterday the dogs go off. I open the door – 4 children in costumes. I gave them a whole bunch of candy, assuming they will be our only trick or treaters. Ten minutes later we hear a loud horn. A massive vehicle rolls in, one of those platform vehicle-looking things that might be used for a parade float. It’s decorated with Halloween lights and it disgorges roughly 50 kids into our yard. Once they came through, we had 4 candies left, so I raided our home stash. Then we got another kid pack and then another. We were so happy.
Today will be the day of general professional housekeeping and boring admin things we have been putting off.
Congratulations! I’m sure it will be fantastic. I’m very excited to have Catalina’s story told and I’m sure you all are relieved to conclude as well.
Moderator R says
Heartfelt Congratulations ???? !
Woohoo, BDH, we shall feast ????
Olivia Shepherd says
Congratulations on the book and the trick-or-treating children! It gives me hope that eventually they will show up at my house one year.
Karen the Griffmom says
Yay for Ruby Fever out the door! Take plenty of time to breathe and think on your next inspiration.
We had a busy night with trick-or-treaters, but nobody trucked in. (We had that a couple of years; a co-worker once came to our door with his kids; I commented I didn’t realize he lived in the neighborhood, and he replied he didn’t, but they knew our neighborhood was a a good one for treats and so drove the 20 miles to get to it.)
Woohoo! Congratulations! Well done on finishing that job ????
So glad you guys are finished!
One step closer!
This year for Halloween we had way more kids than usual. I used to buy 5 big bags but this year we only bought 3 bags. I felt bad but in order to make it last for the 3.5 hrs, I had to say only 1 or 2 pieces please.
I left to walk the dog and came back to some older kids emptying the bowl into their sacks. I only ever set one bag at a time so they didnt completely wipe me out. Other than the mischief makers it was a fun night.
My 7yr old stayed past dark and didnt freak out at the clowns or really scary houses. So he got as much candy as his big sister this year.
Tasha A. says
We live around the corner from a street that closes down to traffic for halloween. We decorate but usually the kids don’t make it up to our house since there is a large parking lot between the end to the closed street and our house.
Our nieghbor always gets trick or treators though. This year we asked them why. They explained that they have full size candy bars the kids/families that show up learned about that a few years ago and now park on our street, walk to the closed street and then the parents use the full size candy house as a way to get the kids home!
Melissa S. says
I love this Halloween Treat comment. We live at the back of our neighborhood so this year we gave out full size candy bars and the kids finally trekked back here! Somehow word spread pretty fast. Totally worth it.
How nice! My block is a mix of homes and apartments, so we don’t get any trick or treaters either. We had candy out the first couple of years but we only had one or two stop by. The last couple of years we’ve had none. What a nice surprise to see so many kids stop by!
Can you or the BDH recommend something to read?
I feel like I’ve already read everything, while looking for books on goodreads I’m like, oh read this one in 2010 let’s rate it, and the new ones I’ve tried do not hold my attention for long, so I’ll tell you my favorite book series and see if you can lead me to newer worlds
Alpha and Omega
Black dagger brotherhood
The folk of air
The Dresden files
Iron druid chronicles
Immortal after dark
Green Bone Saga
The name of the wind
Daughter of smoke and bone
And so many others
I prefer books center in the same couple with maybe short stories or spin off about some of the other main characters
Moderator R says
This is the direct link to the blog’s reading recommendations https://ilona-andrews.com/category/recommended-read/, which can also be found by using the search function.
Also a great recommendation from Gordon (can’t remember which blog entry it is on): “Mongrels” by Stephen Graham Jones. A werewolf story, beautiful and heartbreaking.
(I borrowed it from the inter-library system my local library is part of.) Not a series, I think. Checked on his website; there did not seem to be a continuation.
Amateur Hermit says
Ordinary Magic – Devon Monk series
Nice Girls, Half-Moon Hollow, The Mystic Bayou series – Molly Harper
Cynthia E Spiller says
+1 yes they are great!
And remember to also check out the BDH comments sections in the book recommendations blog pages for even more suggestions. I go back everytime to find new BDH book recommendations to read.
So many great series! I think you should check out Nalini Singh’s work if you haven’t already: Guild Hunter, Psy/Changling and Psy/Changling Trinity. She is on my preorder list.
Oh yes, I really like her books too and living in New Zealand I can get them signed
Anna Stanford says
Try Michelle Sagara’s Chronicles of Elantra series (book 1 is Cast in Shadow).
Also Juliet Marillier’s Sevenwaters series (actually, all her stuff is good).
Another favorite of mine is Sharon Shinn – she has several series, start with Samaria (book 1 is Archangel).
Then there’s Jane Linkdskold’s Firekeeper series (book 1 is Through Wolf’s Eyes).
And Carrie Vaughn’s Kitty series (book 1 is Kitty and the Midnight Hour).
Oh yes, I was going to say Sharon Shinn as well, I love her books! My favourite is the Twelve Houses series, but they’re all good – the Samaria and Elemental Blessings series are also wonderful 🙂
Gail Storyteller says
I literally thought I was the only person that equated all these people you mentioned together. They and Ilona Andrews literally helped me build my imagination and gave me the urge to create my own worlds. I think I’m gonna see if I’ve forgetten of their books to reread them cause I have read a lot of it.
Have you tried John Conroe’s Demon Accords or Zone War series? I think there both great and have same couples. I can also recommend JD Robb’s Eve Dallas series & Charlaine Harris’ new Gunny Rose series (they also both have reoccurring couples). But most of all I recommend Martha Well’s Murderbot Diaries. No couples, but I adore Murderbot. Happy reading!
Ange in Australia says
Murderbot is awesome! Not a spoiler but particularly loved the bit about the ship frantically deploying its cleaning bots. ????
Either of Wen Spencer’s series, though I think the “Tinker” series comes closer to your description of what you like. They are set in an alternate world, where a circle that includes most of Pittsburgh is shifted to a twin of Earth for 30 days, then comes back for a day to the world it came from. Book 6 is coming out next spring – April 5th I think.
I found the “Ukiah Oregon” books first. Also set in (a less exotic) Pittsburgh, they hooked me right from the first page. I could “see” the setting of the first sequence – having left my daughter there to attend college the previous month.
Michael Hall says
Oh boy! I’ve been waiting for that book (Harbinger) since Project Elfhome came out with the teaser chapter in 2016. I can’t wait.
I can recommend Lisa Shearin’s Raine Bernares series starting with Magic Lost, Trouble Found. If you enjoy that, she second series SPI Files. CE Murphy’s Urban Shaman and Old Races series are very good too and Carrie Vaughn’s Kitty Norville werewolf series is good too
Love S.P.I. and Raine Benares series!! Great adventures and fun characters. I would definitely want to go to dinner with these people!!
I’d recommend the Psy-Changeling Series from Nalini Singh, Infinitum and the Inheritance Cycle from Christopher Paolini and The Awakening from Nora Roberts (the second part will be published on 23.11 this year)
Bit different but a long series and makes my laugh out loud – rare for me. Jana DeLeon miss fortune series. Louisiana Longshot is the 1st one in series.
Here are some of my favorite series:
Codex Alera by Jim Butcher
Psy/Changeling and Guild Hunter by Nalini Singh
Dragon Kin by GA Aiken
Magnus pack, Pride Stories, Honey Badger Chronicles by Shelly Laurensten
Night Huntress world by Jeaniene Frost
Throne of Glass by Sarah Maas
Allie Beckstrom by Devon Monk
Oh forgot to mention Eve Dallas by JD Robb and any series by Nora Roberts
Susan Ravan says
Jane Yellowrock, Chicago vampires, The Spider are all great series.
Terrie Cunningham says
I would also recommend The Consortium Rebellion Books by Jessie Mihalik. It is a 3 book series and I read them all. Besides the IA and Mercy Thompson books, it has been the only series I have wanted to finish. Lately I will try a book and then go back to IA. I am currently re-reading KD
Grace Draven’s Wraith Kings series is lovely and has been recommended by IA before (3 books)
Death Before Dragons by Lindsay Buroker is a lighthearted, easy urban fantasy read with a quirky romance 9 books and a few short stories/novellas)
If you’re also interested in scifi, I love the Paradox series by Rachel Bach, it has lots of action and an unforgettable romance (3 books)
Dianna Kilgore says
I like Anne Bishops Black Jewels and Others series. Also Eileen Wills World of the Lupi.
Iron Chronicles by Elizabeth Hunter are really good :). Not a super long series but it’s one of my favs.
That should have said Irin. Silly spell Check!
Ange in Australia says
Yes, Irin Chrinicles and her two Elementals series, novellas, and short stories. Basically anything Elizabeth Hunter.
barbie doll says
So glad you have finished Ruby Fever. OK I know its not totally finished but mostly. Is there a date for when it will be available to the readers? No I am not pushing but I seem to remember a date being mentioned. Glad that Halloween went well.
Isn’t it amazing how many kids come by when Halloween is on a weekend? I went through a bag of 150 pieces of candy and turned the lights off at 7 PM, but I could see there were still kids (mostly heavily laden so I didn’t feel bad about it) that were still out and about.
Yay! Congrats on the first finish, and for all the blood sweat and tears you put into it. Can’t wait!
Congratulations!!!!! The book that never ends, ended! BDH patiently awaits…… Nope! Can’t wait!!
Woohoo!!! Your victory will be ours!
Sara B. says
I had 3 small batches of trick-or-treaters. I didn’t even care that one group had two high-school students in it. I am justified in buying candy next year!!!!
Hope you have a nice day (or days) of domestic catching-up.
Yay for you!!! (Yay for us…)
Barbara K Swanson says
Congratulations on submitting Ruby Fever!
Agree with you that giving out candy is half the fun of trick or treat time! We had about 80-90 and greatly enjoyed seeing the costumes. Noticed less kids overall, but we ended up with 5-10 in each group that did show up.
Taking my 7 year old out, seemed like about half the houses had just put out bowls with candy. Very kind, but the kids were much more excited about ringing doorbells and receiving candy from an actual grown-up stranger. ???? ???? Overall, a very happy Halloween!
Congratualtions on crossing the ‘finish line’!
There is nothing like owning yourselves and celebrating your free-agency.
Congrats on finishing Ruby Fever! This is very exciting news!
And congrats on getting trick or treaters, my neighborhood has maybe 2 children in it, it’s mostly retired folks and families with older or adult children, so in the 5 years I have lived here, I never gotten a single trick or treater. I think the family with the kids takes them to a more candy-profitable neighborhood. I still decorate for Halloween every year, mostly on the inside for myself though, with only a few outside decorations (the HOA can be picky about where the decorations are located and how many there are).
My cats probably appreciate the no trick or treaters though, 2 of them run and hide whenever someone knocks on the door.
Yay, trick or treaters!!! Always a delightful experience! And congratultions on freedom to smuggle, bounty hunt at leisure, and sip cocktails in peace!
OMG, congrats on submitting the first draft! I hope you enjoy your bounty hunting (and smuggling, though it depends on what you plan to smuggle) 🙂
Judy Schultheis says
Loud cheers and great rejoicing over getting the book done!
I’m glad you got trick-or-treaters and had fun with them. The only ones I saw were my grandkids – to show me their costumes.
My grandson (9) was steampunk in brown – his hat was great. My granddaughter (15) was a monster (I don’t recall which) from the anime they’re fans of. Long skinny white face, everything else black.
Eric Flint’s Ring of Fire series is quite nice. The first book is 1632 and is available on the Baen Free Library site of Baen books. The free library also has compilations of free fiction short stories for each year. You can find Wen Spencer there too!
Congratulations!!! And so glad to hear that you’re getting trick or treaters again. I didn’t have a single one yesterday. 🙁
Lorrie C Thompson says
I always loved loved loved the day after I turn in a heavy project — who knew that boring admin and cleanup tasks could be so wonderful? That whole weight lifted thing. CONGRATULATIONS on finishing!! (Oh, and as a huge HL fan, thank you from the bottom of my heart 🙂 ).
Halloween is my favorite holiday. No angst, no travel, just happy kids.
Big year for us, maybe 30. We live on a cul de sac. The main drag gets 100+
To the commenter whose cats hide, my cat thinks the kids might be the UPS guy in disguise and tries to attack them. Count your blessings.
Congrats on the 1st draft!!!
Sounds like an awesome halloween. Oh, and “We’re out of contract and are ready for the life of bounty hunting and smuggling.” – just in time for the new Book of Boba Fett trailer.
May I ask an “Inside Baseball” type question? You said that you turned in your draft, and are now “out of contract.” Does the contract only cover turning in a first draft, and not the final edits? (Asking for a friend. 🙂 )
Moderator R says
“Out of contract” refers to the fact that RF is the last project under a traditional publishing contract remaining. All other House Andrews ongoing projects are self published ????
What Mod R said. Out of contract means we don’t have a publisher for our next novel. There is no deadline for our next project. We are not accountable to anyone regarding it.
However, this novel is still very much under contract and we are obligated to edit it and do all of the work that is required to bring it to publication. Your friend’s obligation in regard to the contracted work of fiction ends when the book is published and all promotional requirements are fulfilled. That last one applies to times when the publisher requires the author to do a book tour, for example.
Congrats on both a Happy Hallowe’en and handing in Ruby Fever!
Dare I ask if the Lawn Orphans Mafia also do a slide line in Trick or Treating?
This was a banner year for us with 18 trick or treaters. We’re at the end of a green space and only the neighbors next door and across the street do Halloween. I made 20 packs of candy and my husband laughed at me. Ha, ha, the joke was on him. It made me so happy to have that many. Maybe next year there will be more!
Vianne Higgins says
Horray for finishing & having a good holiday. Hope you stay contract free. It seems like the suscess of Blood Heir proves you can do it & less creative-killing stress when you can adjust your own deadlines based on real life.
We put out 2 bowls so we could take our own kiddos around our neighborhood for an hour. Lots more houses light up & trick or treators than last year.
Our three year old said through her face mask “I’m not scared of any Halloween decorations because I wuv them so much” and “I just want to hug and kiss everybody.” And she would just freeze at the door and stare at animals.
I was reminded I need to be less ableist and hand out treats for kids that can’t have candy. The bowl of non-edibles was empty. The bowl of candy was mostly empty (last year it was mostly full).
Maybe kids like variety because I don’t think there were that many kids unable to eat candy. Maybe I will do all non-edibles next year.
Stewart Kim says
I think it’s good to have a mix. Just not pencils, please. The cheap ones mess up the sharpeners at school. My kids have gotten glow sticks, finger lights, bouncy balls, etc., from one must-stop house over the years.
Colleen Whitley says
Yes, I get bouncy balls, bubble solution, erasers and such like play dough. Those with dietary restrictions appreciate having a choice. It is also good for the little ones on their first Halloween. You know the candy is going to the parents for those. Having something age appropriate that the kid can actually play with is appreciated.
The worst thing was when my 3 yr old was given a can of V-8 juice. He didn’t mind the toothbrush but hated the juice.
Congratulations on the finishing the book!
I look forward to your future adventures in smuggling and bounty hunting (I’m picturing Dog, The Drug Mule and it ain’t pretty).
I had almost 100 trick or treaters. I am so happy.
Stewart Kim says
Yea for kids! My mom got mad a few years ago about kids coming in from other neighborhoods, but why? Kids are kids are kids.
And double yay for the book! Catalina is such a different character than most of your MCs, and I’ve loved watching her grow. I listened to Emerald Blaze this morning during a tooth cleaning and it helped my anxiety so much. Thank you!
My first Halloween of owning my own house, I was so excited. Dressed up, decorated, dressed up the dog, gave my parrot a witch hat that he promptly attempted to eat… and bought a large quantity of candy.
Not one single person came through my neighborhood in search of candy.
Usually I now go hand out candy at my parents’ house, but this year my brother’s family was there with their dog, and their dog is dog-selective, elderly, and hasn’t met my new dog yet. So I stayed home and optimistically sat on the porch with a bowl of candy and two dogs dressed in costumes until it got too cold. Still no children. But a few people drove by and smiled at my dogs, so there was that.
Bill from nj says
You are a brave person , putting a hat on your parrot, they are living dinosaurs. We had a yellow naped Amazon that when kids came trick or treating, would have this insane chuckle when they yelled ‘trick or treat’.
We have very few kids trick or treating. I thought with it being a Sunday and it being a nice day it would be more, but it wasn’t, maybe 20 kids tops. I think these days a lot of kids are doing organized Halloween events rather than trick or treating. I don’t know if Covid worries impacted this either.
Congrats on getting RF done, I know it was hard. It is funny that you mentioned the problems you had bc you had put the characters into situations where they were boxed into acting in ways that weren’t them. Susanna Kearsely, who my wife got me hooked on,writes these fantastic historical romances that as history alone are worth reading. Anyway, she says when she writes, she hears her characters talking and writes it down, and when she is getting it wrong they stop speaking:). Would love to ask her if they ever argue with her *lol*.
Are you guys planning to go the self publishing route, or are you planning to do trad publishing but maybe book at a time rather than contracting for X books? I think BDH would love self publish, but then they might chain you in the house, throwing Skittles and fast food through the door,and let you do nothing but turn out books ( BDH are ogres after all:).
So happy for you both!!!! Congrats!
Ellen D says
Congrats on both the book & the groups of goblins that invaded!
Congratulations on getting Ruby Fever basically done, basically. Thank you
Very happy to hear Halloween, actually had trick treaters…those huge mass did sounds scary but fun. For the past several years had very few, only had two last year, and I do hand out full sized candy, had none this year. May buy another bag next year just incase, was thinking about not bothering. Friends went with their kids and found one house they marked for next year (not in the same town) they gave out candy to the kids and soda to the ones escorting them. The kids made a great haul, but the adult couldn’t gush enough about that house. Regardless glad you had a good Halloween.
Colleen Whitley says
One year a house was providing hot coffee and hot chocolate with a splash of Bailey’s for the adults. That was a major hit as it was around -10C that year.
I was hoping you’d celebrate by sharing a little snippet. Oh well. Glad it’s done. 🙂
We also have very few trick-or-treaters BUT this year we transformed our garage into a “Haunted Hogwarts” and drew in a bunch of kiddos the night before Halloween! (And we raised $$$ for a local nonprofit)
Link of walk-through for Harry Potter fans: https://youtu.be/siyu1EbG5zM
Congratulations! Hopefully now that the pressure has been removed you can take a deep breath and live!! Enjoy yourselves. Enjoy doing something besides writing. And though it’s contra to your normal life….relax!! Hugs.
This our family’s first time trick or treating since we were from Asia. The Halloween in developed countries are truly magical! I got sad when I read nobody showed up from your second year because I would! Kids today probably forgot how lucky they are. The pandemic reminded them of that. x
Mary Cruickshank Peed says
It must have been a day. We normally get 10-15 Trick-or-treaters but I’m always enthusiastic… I love the kids in their costumes, I love the big kids with streaks of black paint and their backpacks on backwards. … It was a day, packs of kids and adults … We had a tractor pulling a haywagon All decorated in skeletons and pumpkins from block to block full of kids and adults having a floating party. We got nearly 100 kids. 15 years in this house and the best showing ever.
(When we used to live in the Chicago area we usually got between 500-600 kids. We had a blast)
wow, I am so jealous.
F Sandy says
Yay! Congratulations ???????????? I’m sorry it was such a difficult child to birth but I’m very happy to get to read it.
Samantha Murphy says
You’re so lucky! I have to borrow my friend’s front porch if I want to see kids in costume.
Kristine Ahlskog says
We had lots of kids for Halloween this year….think because of last year (none) and that we stood at the end of our driveway. Lots of KitKats handed out this year.
Congratulations!! I’m so impressed with how you really worked hard to get through this! I hope that even if it’s never your favourite you can at least feel a lot of pride in completing it.
DeAnna Dear says
Congratulations!!! ????????????. I’m so happy for you both.
Now that you are finished with all outstanding contracts, do you think you will ever enter into another “traditional” book contract with a publisher? Or do you plan to just self publish?
Moderator R says
House Andrews have addressed this here https://ilona-andrews.com/2021/flowers-and-questions/:
“ As we touched on during Zoom Afterparty, once we finish RUBY FEVER, we would like to take a year off to situate ourselves and deliver new installments in some of our self-published series.”
I hope this helps ????
Thank you . You are always helpful. Could you say which of House Andrews is self published?
Moderator R says
The ongoing self published projects are, in no particular order before someone jumps to conclusions ????: the Innkeeper Chronicles series, the Iron Covenant (Hugh’s books) and the Aurelia Ryder series (Julie’s books).
Thank you for your reply!!! Although I would love to see an Arabella series in Hidden Legacy soon, I also love those other worlds, too, and look forward basically to anything House Andrews writs!!!!
Diane Mc. says
We had lots of kids and very little candy left thank goodness!
congrats on having kids come by! I have kids in my neighborhood, but have not had a trick or treater in years. I finally stopped buying candy as I didn’t want it in the house and started turning off my outside lights. It is sad, I loved seeing the kids in their costumes.
and congrats on finishing the book, too!!!!! I am so excited (for me and the bdh as well as for you). That much closer to the finished product.
Maria R. says
Lovely, lovely! Glad you’ve past the book hurdle. We shall await finished novel.
We’ve lived in our house 18 years. First year, I bought a decent amount of candies and chips. We had so many Trick or Treaters I started eyeing my canned goods (bad huh?, lol) next 2-4 years I was so ready! Decorated, made individual treat bags, even lit chocolate scented candles and placed them outdoors.
Then the children grew up, fewer still replaced them. Now, I over buy, just in case, then end up with too many leftovers.
Congratulations on the first draft done!! May you have a few days to breathe before the next step in the process!! ????????
One of the joys of being housemates with my dad when he was in his late 80’s was how much he enjoyed handing out candy on Halloween. I wasn’t impressed by our town’s “safety measure” of having trick or treat during daylight hours, but it meant he could see the kids and their costumes. (His night vision was pretty limited at that age.) He had fun, the kids got candy and compliments on their costumes – it was a good afternoon all around. ????????????
My daughter felt dejected after two years of no trick-or-treaters. We’ve devised a plan for next year. Glad your draft is done.
Congratulations! I look forward!
Yesterday, I waited for the children… in vain. It was for the greatest pleasure of my son because today he ate all the candies I bought for 🙂
That is so neat!! The kids!! How amazingly fun!!!
Congrats on the book first draft! Woo hoo!
My Halloween was festive, yet so busy I just kinda shut down. Next year we need to dial it back a bit, lol. But we live near Salem, MA. So I don’t know if I’ll be successful. Unless we go to the woods somewhere in Vermont. LOL.
So happy you are free! Thank you for all the hard work and for enduring the vagaries of the BDH❤️
Congratulations on Ruby Fever- and then Halloween on top.
May the housekeeping go swiftly and interesting projects await you.
We set a record this year for trick or treaters. 22 kids. Normally it’s under 10 which is so weird considering how many kids live on my street. The one family alone has 6.
So happy it was a good Halloween for you, too! I go all out every year with juice barrels, chips, and candy. This year we went a step further and added hot chocolate packets with chocolate mints. I’ve never had more than 24 kids show up, and yesterday all 40 of my goodie bags were gone in under 2 hours. I was also prepping the home stash for kiddos, but no more appeared. It was definitely the best Halloween I’ve had in a while.
Michele G says
I will not believe that Ruby fever us a bad book until I read it. And probably not even then :-).
Glad you are both happy and relaxed. Hope you can get some down time soon.
I’m thrilled you got through the first draft and look forward to reading it! ????
We used to live in a small farm town. Every Halloween, parents from the outlying farms would drive their kids into town for trick or treating. And the nice neighborhood? It was a zoo. People knew where to get the good candy.
Looking for Ruby Fever. I’m sure it will be awesome as always.
Amy Y says
YAY to the finish of the draft and to getting the kids for Halloween. We finally stopped getting candy because hubby and I ate it all with no kids and already have trouble keeping our weight down
Donna A says
Trick or treaters – zero
Sweets – many
Toothache – forthcoming
Thank you and YEAH. I do so hope there is some contract offered for another 3 books for the Arabella series – I know I know this has all been addressed – but I really just want to, you know, put it out there again. I spent the evening making sure my 6 month kitten was not too traumatized by the stupid fireworks and watching her flatten flatter than a pancake when my fire alarm went off while baking sweet potato chips…..argh I fail as a fur mom~!~
Patricia Schlorke says
Congratulations on your freedom on getting the first draft done and sent! ????????????????????????
It was quiet on Halloween for me.
Yippee for you both and congratulations! As a devoted member of the BDH, I can only be grateful that more is coming to help fill the void. We had less Halloween visitors, but the ones that did were lots of fun-I was particularly taken by a fairy light decorated hot dog!
The reluctant editor says
I have an editing question. Is there an “editing check list” for substantive edits? What types of feed back do you expect from Erika?
If you have already addressed this maybe the fabulous Mod R can direct me to the post.
My partner wrote a 200K+ fantasy novel as a hobby & just gave it to me to “edit”.
I have previously read the first 80K and it exceeded my expectations. I feared it would suck and I would damage our relationship with honesty. However this seems not to be the case. This is his second draft.
Besides the obvious grammatical, typographical, or continuity issues, what should I edit it for?
Pacing? Clarity? Are there some rules to follow? A good editing article to follow? I’d like to be helpful without this being marriage ending.
For example, he kills off the protagonist’s love interest early on, probably to promote growth in the character’s arc. I have mixed feelings about it.
I just wished I knew what I was doing. I read a lot but it’s hard to tell what makes a good book good.
(I was happy with the blog post for Blood Heir, for example).
Thanks for any help.
You should not edit. Let me take that burden off your shoulders and set it aside. Not knowing what you should edit for tells me that you probably would do more harm than good.
Instead, I recommend doing a reader reaction read. This is what beta readers do and it’s much more valuable to the writer at this stage. As you are reading the manuscript, comment on places that make you feel something. If something is confusing, tell him. If you are feeling iffy about the plot twist, tell him and explain why. Like “I don’t feel anything for his love interest. I know it’s supposed to be gut wrenching when she dies, but it’s not upsetting enough because I kind of don’t like her anyway.”
Tell him how his manuscript makes him feel. And if he is unhappy – which I doubt he would be – and is expecting a professional edit, he needs to pay you for it.
Here is more on editing:
One relieved former editor says
Thank you so so much for your response! I think you just saved me and my marriage. I feel very relieved.
One reader reaction coming right up. I can do that.
So happy for y’all! I know this book has been a huge stress. I’m glad it’s finished and you can relax! Thank you for writing it! ????
Today the apartment above me caught fire. At about 5am the alarms went off. I ignored it and tried to go back to sleep. Neighbors screaming in hall finally got me up. Fire department put out fire quickly. But the smoke and fumes emptied all 15 floors. elevators were out. six flights (3 big floors) down concrete stairs. The sprinklers were the heavy duty flooding type. The water poured down. My apt destroyed. The stairwell was a nightmare. All sick and elderly trying to help each other with firemen carrying people. And the water came down on us like dirty sooty waterfall. I have severe emphysema and had to keep stopping to catch my breath. When i hit the lobby the water made the ceiling tiles fall. A fireman looked at me called an EMT over and it was off to hospital. I refused intubation so after extensive blood work they sent back to home that does not exist. My family stepped up to bat and bought me a bunch of cloths. The building is putting us up in really nice motel. I turn 75 tomorrow.
Oh Joe. Happy birthday. Today was mine and it was a beautiful day. I hope yours tomorrow is as good as it can possibly be. The very best of birthday wishes to you.
Patricia Schlorke says
Happy belated birthday! ????
My heart goes out to you! My birthday wish for you is to find a moment of joy on your birthday, and also a new home quickly!
Patricia Schlorke says
Happy birthday. My wish for you is to get your apartment fixed and ready to move back in soon.
Oh Joe! Happy Birthday! I’m sorry you and your neighbors went through that, but I’m glad your family was able to help you out.
Mary a says
Congratulations on rf. Yay.
I helped with a trunk or treat. I estimate based on what the candy bags say I passed out over 700. But since there is a whole string of vehicles the kids can get quite a haul just walking through. Yes some were double dippers
Congrats on finishing the book!
I love Halloween. I live in an apartment now and even though no kids come by, I still buy a bag of candy because I’m hopeful. I usually end up eating a bit and sharing the rest with coworkers so it’s not so bad. But yay, trick or treaters! Any really good or clever costumes spotted?
A girl dressed as a unicorn came to the door and I saw, a few feet away, an adult woman… her mom? with a dog… the dog was also dressed as a unicorn.
Mary a says
Lots of spiderman, batman, wonder woman, ( they are so cute when you get 3 year old ww), Harry Potter types. Someone took their dog to the groomer and all the white became orange, so that dog stood out. Baby dresses as a giraffe being carried by mom. Three sibling having smiling pumpkins/jackolanterns.
Mary a says
Oh and blow up dinosaurs with tails, have you seen any of them?
Congratulations on finishing first draft of Ruby Fever ???????????? LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Catalina & Family & Friends ❤❤❤
Karen O. says
Whoo Hoo! Congratulations on sending in Ruby Fever. I know how you feel about getting trick or treaters. Last night I had my first ones since moving to my house in the country, seven years ago! My neighbors, who have three small children came by. Candy for all! So happy to continue this wonderful tradition.
Me Duncan says
Congratulations! Must be a huge load off your shoulders to get to this point. I go out to my girlfriend’s house to hand out candy, over 500 kids showing up is not an exaggeration, ( we used to keep track with a clicker) and that is not including parents. They are on a main street of a village and all the nearby hill town kids come down as well as the village kids…
M Duncan says
Really enjoyed “Seven Blades in Black” by Sam Sykes, 1st book in new series.
Woot! Congrats. Hopefully it’s one of those where the pain and suffering colored your perception, and a few months from now you’ll decide it’s actually great. I know **I’m** looking forwards to it.
Logan Matthew Teague says
Also super hyped for Ruby Fever, I love Hidden Legacy.
Oh wow! That is so exciting about finally having trick or Treaters. We’ve been on 2 different farms for the last 30 years so nada. 🙁 I guess too far off the road or in the boonies. While we were building this place we did rent for 2 years in a neighborhood. A neighborhood that supported the holiday. OMG! The shock of it after wanting at least one trick or treater for so many years. We had to go out for candy after, much like you, giving away what we had gotten on the first few kids, then the private stash. The next year we were ready!
AND congrats on the book!!
Woohoo! So happy to hear about Ruby Fever! That’s a load off for sure.
And congratulations on the trick or treaters! We haven’t had any for at least a decade, and we’re kind of sad about it. We don’t do much in the way of display though, which might have something to do with it. If any kinds had showed up yesterday, we did have four massive Tony’s Chocolonely bars since those are a pantry staple. Beyond that, we would have had to dig into the granola bars, and hope none of the kids were allergic to peanuts.
Housekeeping and admin, my least favorite things. Hope you got enough done that you can do fun stuff tomorrow.
Congratulations on getting the first draft out the door!
It’s a great future treat for us! ????
Congrats on first draft completion ????????????????
The BDH is looking forward to its scheduled release ????
I’ve lived in NYC apartments since 1997 – nary a trick or treater ever.
I did volunteer the last two weekends at the Gov Islands pumpkin patch. Family fun so lots of little kids dressed up. Great to see them having a good time.
My Dad who lives in the suburbs used to get 150 kids but only had 20 yesterday. He bought 200 bars but only gave out 80 (4 each). I told him to only get 100 but he is ever hopful.
Yay for trick-or-treaters! Glad you had a wonderful Halloween. ????????????????
I had 2 kids show up and that was all. Lots of church and other organized trunk and treat stuff.
Congrats on getting RF shipped out. Probably feels like 50 pounds fell off your shoulders and put a huge smile on your face too.
Congratulations! That must feel so so so good.
Congratulations on kicking the first draft out the door. I find myself ardently awaiting House Andrew’s self-publishing forays. What will you do when let off the chain? Don’t worry. BDH will gobble up anything you care enough to write about.
Audrey Jane says
Yay, congrats on the first draft!!
I live in Utah, and most people are very religious on Sunday, so we had two Halloweens this year, Saturday and Sunday ???? got a few trick or treaters both nights, and by the end of Sunday, someone took my whole bowl. I’m pregnant with our third and totally past caring, I just figure it’s less for me to store ????. Didn’t even stay in our neighborhood, we drove 20 miles north to my parent’s house so my little ones could trick-or-treat with grandma and grandpa and I could be lazy ❤️ It’s my mom’s favorite holiday, and she went all out dressed up as an alien since my boys were Superman and an astronaut—dyed her face green and everything. It was awesome ????
Trainor Linda says
Me ( happy face) excited. Waiting ????
Congratulations! I absolutely cannot wait for Ruby Fever and know it’s going to be epic!
It must feel wonderful to have this first crucial stage done. Congratulations and enjoy yourselves.
The parade float group trick or treat both sounds amazing and terrifying (for the home owners/trick or treat-ees). Glad you had a wonderful Halloween and hope you get some rest before you have to do edits.
Cheryl Ferguson says
Great news about Ruby Fever!
We had a relatively quiet Hallowe’en, only 65 kids came by, most of them young ones in such cute costumes! i give out full size bars or sugarless gum packages to the young ones, and a handful of small bars to the older ones (not sure if there is much difference, but the young ones love the big bars; I let them choose which one they want)
My grand daughter carved an R2D2 into her pumpkin, I did a fire-breathing dragon, and my daughter did a unicorn….lots of fantasy figures and then had fairy lights on my porch.
It was a great night!
Had lots of kids too, it was nice.
Vicki Haslip says
Love all your books, can’t wait for the new book.
Of course, you must be happy to have finished the book. But my congratulations is for having so many trick or treaters this year. One of my favorite things is seeing all the kids in their costumes, especially when they’re excited about what they’re wearing. It’s great seeing all the happy faces.
Katie R says
Congratulations on finishing the book!
We never get trick-or-treaters. Our street has no street lights and our driveway is long so nobody even comes our way at all. We decorate anyway. Just for us. Every year we accumulate more skeletons.
So glad you got to give out candy! That’s the best part and we’ve missed it since we moved into this part of town.
So happy you got Trick ‘o Treaters! I swear our neighborhood decorates for each other since most of our children go to indoor events due to miserable weather conditions.
OMG!!!!! I am elated!!! Life is good, RF is in, and Joy is in my heart. Thank you so much!!!
Wendy Morrey says
Yay!! So excited! I am sure it will be wonderful!!
Breanna Parker says
We just moved into a new neighborhood, and for the first time ever our neighbors brought our kids and us treats! My kids were so excited ????
So…. what’s next on the agenda? Dare we hope for Iron and Magic 2? Or Knight Ryder 2?
Moderator R says
House Andrews apprised us of plans here https://ilona-andrews.com/2021/kd-answers-yay/ Innkeeper and Iron Covenant 2 are likely next ????
Hope this helps!
Thanks, Mod R – so glad you’re here to keep us as un-confuzzled as possible 😀
Michael Hall says
Whoops, link went to “Page Not Found” Just a fyi, I think your work is fantastic for sending us to the the info we wanted. Sometimes to what we didn’t even know we wanted. Thank you so much. ????❤????
Moderator R says
Please try now ????
Michael Hall says
Yep, it’s working now. Damn, you do some mighty fine work! I just looked at the time stamp, and it was only two minutes after I posted my comment that you replied. (even though I didn’t check back until just now) How do you do it? Do you live in front of your pc? When do you eat or sleep? And your encylopedic knowledge of all things IA is nothing short of stunning. I also want to thank you again for your posting of ALL of the many snippets in your “Friday Basics and a List” link you left for us a while back. I bookmarked that page so that I can always have it for re reading all the many snippets. In addition the link for the Curren POV was a fantastic extra that got added to both my kindle and nook IA library. If you don’t hear it often enough, thank you, thank you, thank you, the BDH appreciate you and all that you do for us. ❤❤❤????????????????????????
Moderator R says
????It’s all achieved through the magic and wonder of phone notifications.
Michael Hall says
Oops, did I say something wrong that you removed my comment? Sorry ????
Michael Hall says
Whatever they pay you Isn’t enough. Your dedication to your work is quite frankly awe inspiring. Even if it depends on the magic and wonder of phone notification, you are still the one actually responding to them. And in such a timely fashion no less. Thank you so much, your hard work and dedication is very much appreciated, by myself and I feel safe in saying all of the BDH as well. Hugsy ❤????????
Moderator R says
It will come as no surprise that House Andrews are both incredibly generous and extremely considerate as employers. I adore my boss and my job ????, and I am very happy that what I do helps! Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life hehe.
I just love your Halloween story! ????????????
It wasn’t the same here where rain kept on falling….
Congrats for sending the book ???? !
Lin Sims says
It sounds like a lovely time. Will there be decorations next year? If so, post pictures!
Also, yay on finishing the first draft! That must be so satisfying.
Lynn Thompson says
Bwah ha ha ha. Thank you, Ilona Andrews for the post.
Given my neighbors propensity to hmm, PC, right, so ‘discharge firearms’ Halloween is a nonevent here. They take those no trespassing signs very seriously. ????
July 4 fireworks show is awesome thou. ????
Glad you had trick or treaters.
How about the kid with the lawn mowing orphans/ mafia?
Congratulations on finishing Ruby Fever. It was an arduous journey but you made it to completion. Good job.
Awesome news. Congratulations!
Congratulations! Both in finishing the contract/draft of the book! And for having so much unexpected Trick or Treat joy!
Congratulations on finishing the book. It is a real achievement. I hope that the bounty hunting and smuggling is more fun! and you always shoot first. I can’t wait to see what you do with the new freedom in Hidden Legacy if you choose to continue it.
Rene' O says
You didn’t like one of the Innkeeper books (the sister’s) and we all loved it. You might be to close to tje pain of creation to judge. Don’t worry we will honestly love it!
Congratulations on all counts!
Sophia (✿╹◡╹) says
You did it!!! Take careee ৲( ᵒ ૩ᵕ )৴♡*
How great! Congrats on turning in the draft!
We moved in March and this was our first Halloween. It is a BIG DEAL in this neighborhood. We all have front porches and apparently anyone who wants to give out candy decorates and sits on the front porch in costume. My littles managed to fill their buckets before running out of steam (a first) and we gave out all 120 candy bars by 7:30 and closed up shop. Best Halloween ever.
Hooray!! This calls for a celebration!!
Congrats on finishing the book!!
Thank you both for the effort and for the update. I know you didn’t enjoy this one as much as some – but I very much appreciate it and am looking forward to it eagerly
We actually had a few kids walk right by our house. I was even standing outside in front of our vehicle with a tablet that lit up my face. And yes, we too had very few kids. On the best years, we’ve had over 100 show up. This time, about 10 or so, but they had full baskets of candy. Maybe next year will be better.
Ooo it’s always sad when you’ve prepared everything and the turnout is not great…. ❤️❤️❤️❤️
Maria Schneider says
Congrats! Wonderful feeling! Enjoy the heck out of it and go buy some replacement candy. 🙂
???????????????????????? Congratulations! And hooray!
Congratulations! I’m sure it’s a great relief to know the first draft is finally finished. How nice that you had such a good turnout for Halloween, too!
Ms. Kim says
Bounty hunting and smuggling? A new Stephanie Plum?
Congratulations on finishing the draft!
Sharon Leahy says
Congratulations!!! Looking forward to reading RF many, many times!!!
Angela Knight says
Congratulations on turning the book in! I know you’re relieved!
I love that you “had a home stash” of candy. I do not. I would have been unprepared.
Yay! Woo Hoo!!! Congratulations!!! You conquered the uncooperative!!!!
🙂 I hope you guys are doing something nice for yourselves!
Congratulations ????????! So happy for you!
Erika S says
Hi! I’m and ERIKA too…. but I can’t seem to find my copy… can you resend it??????????
Katie Pawlowski says
Congrats you guys!!! I’m sure it’s amazing….though I’m not very impartial….I LOVE all your books. Yay for trick or treaters; we took our kids out and had to look hard for houses 🙁 good to know people still like to hand out candy to kiddos!!
Yay! Congrats, you guys!!
Congratulations! When you are ready for pre-orders, my money will be happily handed over 😉
I have never lived in an area that I had trick or treaters. Next year my new house will be built and I have no idea how many kids to expect. I don’t care about Halloween, but I also don’t want to be *that* neighbor.
Susan Tipton says
I am so jealous. We only had three kids this year. It was sad as we did decorate and prepare for 60+.
JoAnn T says
We’re pretty close to a main road, and we go BIG on our decorations. My husband builds most of them, and adds more each year. We had over 200 trick or treaters this year- it was so fantastic! I loved it! We did have to dip into my granola bar stash at the end. I don’t think I could live anywhere that wasn’t big into holidays/decorating.
Question – somewhere (the Pit book) Rogan reassures them about Nevada borrowing the babies powers saying essentially they go away for years- I didn’t come into mine until I was about 5.
But then there’s a snippet where 10 month old baby is levitating sippy cups.
Is this a question of extent of power? Or did I misunderstand?
Moderator R says
You misunderstood ????.
“My power stopped spiking after I was born, and I didn’t really manifest that strong again until I was about five.”
Andrews, Ilona. Emerald Blaze, Hidden Legacy 5. Avon Romance, 2019. Kindle edition, page 342
Stopped spiking and didn’t manifest strong doesn’t mean no power usage at all ????. It’s not the same in all cases: some children, even Primes, manifest later in life altogether. Adam Pierce’s older brother Peter and Rynda Charles’ son, for example.
But some still use their powers as babies. Magic is not one size fits all ????
A G Boggs says
Wow. How do you get onto the list to have those float things turn up??? Where we lived in NC, I bought Halloween candy by the truckload. The neighborhood had sidewalks, streetlights and wide streets, so we always had a huge turn out. And I loved dressing up myself and answering the door in costume. Where we live now has zero kids visiting, not even the 3 that live here. So disappointing. I buy a single back with 6 full sized candy bars in it, and we still end up eating all of them.
Rorie Lynne Solberg says
???? Thank you for all the stories you write!
Chelley Roberts says
Now I’m picturing Gordon in a leather flight jacket, a fedora and carrying a whip. Someone be sure to send a feather boa to Ilona. You can’t be a proper femme fatale without a feather boa.
denise condreay says
Congratulations on the book! And it’s great you got a lot of trick or treaters! I’ve never seen them shipped in by the truckload before! Wow! We never get any any here…pooh.
Miriam Gladen says
HUGE Congrats! Can’t wait to read it! I know you’re relieved and how fun that you got trick-or-treaters for the first time!
I had a truly awful Tuesday but this post made me smile. I have the same problem, I live in a building full of old people so no kids. I can imagine how fun would be to see them. Oh well, At least I still have squirrels
Squirrels are becoming a swear word here! They have been getting into our attic… my daughter sees them even climbing on the bricks in front to get up there… they also destroyed a lot of fruit on our trees… hopefully the new roof we should get soon will keep them out of our house and away from our property!
I just finished the book #2 and have a withdrawal. I have been loving all your series and would like to thank you for creating these wonderful universes!
Bill G says
Great to hear the book is off, and fun to hear that you’ve finally been invaded by candy-seeking monsters!
Marie S says
Congratulations and thanks for sticking with RF. It’s been a slog for you but we will love it!
An abundance of trick or treaters. A sign of abundance in general I trust. They must have heard that the Andrews house is the one!
Enjoy your downtime before you get swallowed back into the world of words.
Thanks for all your recent insights into the world of writing and life in general. We very much appreciate you sharing with us even though, and here I speak for myself mostly, we don’t always manage to comment.
…”ready for the life of bounty hunting and smuggling.” I don’t think you meant that the way I read it cause that’s not the way you folks roll with this blog. But seriously?
Moderator R says
🙂 It was but a jest
Congratulations on completing Ruby Fever. A burden off your shoulders, you’ll walk lighter!
For me it means the next Innkeeper book is closer. I’m not sure I can explain why I have such an affinity for your Innkeeper books but I just love them!!!
Just finished Innkeeper #5 for the umpteenth time.
Did I express how much I love that series?
Enjoy the next few days or weeks off, de-stress.
relax, shop or whatever ……
Congratulations! Though there will be more work to do in the future, it must feel really great to finally get this off your plate for now!
So happy for you!!!
I haven’t lived ANYWHERE that had trick or treating since 911, it’s beyond sad. I really enjoy Halloween, even though my kids are grown, and it’s pointless, nobody comes by.
Congratulations on finishing the draft of Ruby Fever. All the snippets have been wonderful, so I expect the book will be even more so. Enjoy the freedom of not being under contract.
We don’t get children on Halloween either where we are now. At my former neighborhood we would get packs of them. All the neighbors in our court would just go sit outside to give out candy, and we could chat between packs of kids. It was a lot of fun. Halloween and shoveling snow were the times I got to talk to my neighbors the most. Glad you had a lovely Halloween,
Congrats!! Cant wait to read it. Hope you catch on everything quickly and can take some times to rest.
Roseanne Lobbezoo says
Since I know that authors are their own worst critics, I, for one, feel free to anticipate that Ruby Fever will more than live up to my faith in you dear authors, and that it will soon have a well deserved place on my bookshelf of favorites. Congratulations!!! ❤️
So happy with you and for you both…and for us BDHs too. YAY!!!
This year I bought variety packs with snack size bags of chips, Cheetos, Doritos, etc., and around 12 came. I mailed some of my granddaughter’s favorites in a box with other things… I try to buy things we like since we usually end up with lots left… also have coworkers I could share some of the bounty with. My daughter said she saw a recipe using snack size bags of Nacho Cheese Doritos that you add taco fixings into… eager to try!
Congrats on finishing the first draft!
Julia Moore says
Everywhere I’ve lived as an adult, we have not gotten trick or treaters…until our last house! We didn’t decorate except for a single pumpkin on the porch but we had 250 kids that first year! It was amazing. We had to run out for candy twice. The next year we went all out on the decorating (and the candy buying) and had 360 kids. The first year of the pandemic we only had 26. We put candy in individual bags and wore gloves and masks to hand them out. And it was sad. This year, we had 160 kids. Everyone wore masks, but it felt amazing…it felt like we’d just moved in and discovered people actually love Halloween again. I’m so ridiculously excited about the book! Can’t wait!
Congratulations on finishing Ruby Fever@! I am really looking forward to reading it.
Halloween in our cul-de-sac is pretty dismal too. We are the only house to have any decorations and we had only one trick or treater this year. :'( Our part of the subdivision is across a busy street from the rest so I’m sure that has a lot to do with it.
Enjoy your break time!
I don’t know if anyone here has mentioned Melissa F. Olson’s Scarlet Bernard books. The first one is Dead Spots.
The audio version is narrated by Amy McFadden and I really enjoyed it.
Ann Mi says
Congratulations! Enjoy some down time.
Carrie Bartkowiak says
Awwww. That makes me smile.
My dad, who used to be a giant of a man (age and crushed spinal discs have shrunk him down quite a bit) used to LOVE sitting out on the porch all night long and fanboying over all of the cute kids and their costumes. He made every kid feel like they had THE BEST COSTUME EVER. It was probably the biggest highlight of his year, second only to his wedding anniversary.
This is a man who dressed up in a Big Bird costume and spent all day at a work festival/picnic in near-100 degree heat talking to, playing with, and posing with little humans who barely reached his knees because little kids having fun brings him so much joy. I swear he lost about ten pounds in water weight that day, and he didn’t regret a minute of it.
Now he lives in a neighborhood on a steep hill surrounded by other retirees, where no kids show up, and it bums him out so much every year. But he still buys a few huge bags of candy, just in case.
I’m glad you guys got those surprise munchkins and experienced a little bit of innocent joy.
Yay. First edit. Let freedom ring. Luckily for me I love Halloween. The first year here we had maybe 20 or so kids. Last year we had between 300 and 400 kids. Cars were lined up on both sides of the street throughout the entire subdivision. The Sheriffs dept sent out cars to make everyone park along one side so that emergency vehicles could get through. I have no idea where all these kids and cars came from. Maybe they were sick of Covid induced isolation and everyone being masked and costumed felt safe?Luckily I had over bought in the candy dept. This year I was ready. And we were back down to between 30 and 40 kids, all pretty local. It was great fun, even the teenagers were costumed and polite. Now I’m looking for recipes to get rid of piles of candy. Rolos and Reeses, anyone?
Ange in Australia says
Congratulations on finishing the first draft of Ruby Fever. I’m sure we BDH will devour it the moment it is released and wonder why you thought it wasn’t the best book you had ever written. But we are biased!
Your Halloween story was a glimpse into another culture for me. I’m in Australia so Halloween is only slowly emerging as an event here. Maybe only in the last ten years, and decorations for sale in the shops for the last five? Unfortunately we’re only just out of a covid lockdown here so people were very cautious and didn’t do much. I took great joy in hearing about your happiness at the trick or treaters turning up en masse.
Paula Correia says
Good Halloween! 🙂
So happy to have trick or treaters show up! The numbers have been dwindling in our neighborhood but it picked up a little this year.
Congratulations! Hip hip hooray!
*dancing the happy dance in the kitchen
Congratulations on the “Ruby fever” mileage; I know it was a slog.
I’m a single parent, so I put out a bowl of candy on one side of the porch, and the teal pumpkin stuff on the other side so I can take my kid out and about. This year, we had candy left when we got home.
My last neighborhood was one that people brought vans of kids in. Happily, all of my close neighbors loved it as much as I did. I’m glad you got to enjoy it this year!
You’re books have turned into an obsession for me, they’re always a pleasure to read…even if it’s the fifth time. Thank you. Please keep writing for as long as you enjoy it because I will always be ready to read whatever you write.