It isn 't always smooth sailing as we know, and this month has already delivered two big complications to me, though one of them is very welcome: as of this month, I am a homeowner! Got me a mortgage and everything! So, please let me begin by saying a huge thank-you to absolutely all of you my lovely patrons, without whom the very idea of ever becoming a man of property would likely have remained a lifelong fantasy.
But, as you may guess, this comes with a lot of work to do, not least of which is that the Internet at the new place doesn't get connected until the 30th, and I have furniture to buy, boxes to open, and an office that currently looks more like a cardboard recycling plant than a workspace. I'll share pictures when it's unpacked and ready, though!
The second complication was a disease that absolutely slammed into me about a week ago and had me take to my bed for basically five days straight. 1/10 experience, would not recommend to my friends.
So, overall, I've started writing chapter 88 really very late. And frankly that puts me in the position of having to choose between publishing it at the end of the month as per my usual schedule, meaning it will be short and rushed; or publishing it when it's good and ready, meaning I'll then be playing catch-up on the monthly release schedule next month.
There's also the question of the second Newhome Rangers book, sequel to Dandelion. Although this project already runs to a solid 63,000+ words, Justin and I set ourselves a deadline of having the first draft ready by August, and just as with the first book, we've had a late-game revelation about the story and setting which blew our minds and means we're going to have to do a lot of re-writing. If we're going to hit that deadline and deliver that book, it needs some time and attention!
To cut a long story short...I'm very sorry, but there won't be a chapter this month.
I don't like doing this, and indeed the last time I missed a month was more than two and a half years ago in October 2019. But once again, I'm in the position (albeit for happier reasons this time) where quality must come at the cost of punctuality. I hope you agree with me that, whenever that conflict arises, quality should always be the winner.
Thank you for your understanding and your generosity, and if you want to scratch your reading itch this month and haven't yet read Dandelion
(or maybe you want to read it again?) we've now published it completely for free in its entirety over on Royal Road. https://www.royalroad.com/fiction/37532/dandelion