In March 2015, I published a revised version of Nolander on all retail platforms. I’ve updated the book several times before, fixing small mistakes and formatting problems. But this (4th) edition represents more significant changes:
- The book’s been professionally proofread and formatted.
- I altered the beginning to speed things up a bit. The book has gotten many reviews that say something to the effect of, “Starts off slow, but …,” or, “Took me a while to get into it, but ….” I suspect many potential readers didn’t make it through the leisurely beginning, so I did some tightening. Beth now has her first “paranormal experience” in the opening pages. Instead of having her describe her panic attacks, we see her have one. And Matt, the ex-boyfriend, has bitten the dust.
- The Ghosteater chapters now use a straight third-person point of view.
- Beth is now a digital photographer. When I wrote Nolander, I didn’t realize how hard it’s become to acquire film for traditional cameras. Now that I’m clued in, making Beth a print photographer seems unrealistic. It would actually be more expensive for her to go that route, not less.
- I cut down on the amount of sitting-around-and-explaining Graham and Cordus do.
- I’ve added a glossary at the back to help readers keep track of places, people, and things.
- I’ve tweaked the ending slightly to try to give the last Beth chapter a little more punch. In so doing, I was trying to address this kind of feedback:
- “I am a little bummed that the book simply stops as if it were a chapter break rather than having a proper ending.”
- “… the ending is quite abrupt. Another chapter would have helped this book seem complete. Nothing wrong with a cliff hanger ending but it felt like we lost a chapter at the end, instead of finishing up the tale and leaving it open for the next one.”
- “Abrupt ending was disappointing …”
I know cliff-hangers drive people nuts, but I don’t think these readers are reacting to the cliff-hanger, per se. I think the ending felt unintentionally incomplete. This was by far the hardest issue to deal with, as I didn’t want to make revisions that would change the novel’s plot. In the end, I just added another couple lines that I hope will give Beth’s last chapter a more complete feel. I vacillated quite a bit on this revision. Before settling on the additional lines, I experimented with adding a scene. That version (let’s call it Edition 3.5) made it into the free Gods and Mortals collection, so if you’re curious, you can check it out it there. I might also print it as a separate blog entry.
That’s about it. The overall plot in the 4th ed. remains unchanged, so people who’ve read older editions should be able to go from those to Solatium without any confusion.
If you’ve read an older edition and would like to have the new one alongside the old, here’s the mobi (for Kindle) and the epub (for most other ereaders). The files are compressed for quick downloading. Once you have them, you’ll need to open the zipped file. You can then read the book on your computer, using an ereading app or a program like Calibre, or you can sideload it to your tablet or ereader. Directions on how to do that are here.
Read in good health! :)
26 thoughts on “Nolander, Revised”
LOL, I started Nolander for the first time two weeks ago today. After finishing Solatium 4 days later, I was so disappointed it was over I went back and started reading Nolander again (though I did skim some bits). I just finished my second reading of Solatium last night and had no idea what to read next… sounds like it’s going to be Nolander again! :D
LOL, Erin … you just made me very, very happy. :)
It’s only fair considering the amount of escapism you’ve provided for me the last couple of weeks!
Awww … :)
Ok, so now that I’ve read the revised version, I have a few comments. The first part is definitely more polished and draws the reader in faster, which is always good.
Even though this was my third time through in three weeks, I really didn’t feel the need to skim at all on this reading. I read the first time for plot, the second time for Beth / Williams dynamics. This time I focused in on picking up all the little details that are sprinkled all over the place that give great hints to Beth and her gift(s), so I was very hesitant to skip anything. I love how layered it all is. You really have some great nuances in there.
My other comment is more of a question regarding the change of the Ghosteater chapters to third person. I understand why you did it (it definitely made for some awkward reading at first) but after I accepted the style choice, I really bought into the notion that they were hints at Beth’s future talents / capacity. How did you feel about making the switch?
Thank you so much for the feedback, Erin! And truly, hearing that someone read your book three times in as many weeks is pretty much the ultimate compliment. Thank you! :)
The Ghosteater POV issue … great question. Well, there are several reasons I did it the way I did to begin with, and there are several reasons I changed it. Reasons I initially filtered Gh’s POV through Beth’s: First, yes, it’s relevant to a later plot point (won’t get into more detail than that because spoiler!). Second, it seemed like a cool and different thing to do, sort of experimental. Third, I was overly hung up on the idea that I had a first-person narrator. Why I changed it: First, I realized the plot point in question wasn’t going to come up nearly as quickly as I’d at first imagined. Secondly, while some readers did find that POV cool and different, the majority who commented on it were more of the weird-and-confusing opinion. ;) And third, it occurred to me that books mix first- and third-person narration all the time, these days, and that I had done that kind of mixing anyway in Solatium, where there are third-person POV chapters from several other characters besides Gh. So there was no *writing* reason to try to make Nolander entirely first-person. A *series plot* reason, maybe, but not a writing one.
I’m pretty sure I like the new POV better. When I was revising, switching it over had the unforeseen advantage of forcing me to explore more deeply Gh’s take on things. Before, Beth could augment Gh’s knowledge about and understanding of the world with her own as she told his story, but without her consciousness there, I ended up having to deal with the fact that Gh wouldn’t know some stuff — like what a GPS is or who Cordus’s various people are. Presenting things more from his unique perspective seems valuable, as it highlights his otherness. Otherness is important to me. I don’t want Gh to think and act as though he has a human brain inside wolfy skull.
What’s your take on it? Net gain or net loss??
When I read your post about what changed I missed the part about changing the POV, so I wasn’t expecting it when I got there. My initial reaction was a touch of sadness that it was gone since I felt it was a hint at future developments. However, it does make for less confusion, and gives us more of Gh, which is great, too. So overall I’d say it’s a net gain… though I’m glad I got to read it the other way first. :)
I’m glad it seems like a net gain to you, Erin. Maybe I’ll post the older versions of those scenes on my blog one of these days so that folks can see the original. :)
Hi Becca, I just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed Nolander and Solatium. I was sad to finish and hope your next book will be out soon – I am looking forward to finding out what happens next! You have a unique voice and have created interesting characters and a really different world. Love your work!
Melony from Australia
Thank you so much, Melony! I’m hoping to make speedy progress on the third novel this summer. :)
Hi Becca. Is the 3rd book available yet please?
What happened to book 3? Been waiting & waiting. :(
I hope out comes out soon.
I got my copy from Amazon on 15 March, do I need to update it with this copy? Since I have not read it yet (a reviewer without a backlog is doing a poor job LOL) I need to know which copy to read or should I play it safe and just use the link here? (and pay Amazon 15 cents to convert it and keep it in my library forever like I do those tons of PDFs and mobi files I get from authors and publishers)
Hi, Doug! Yes, a copy downloaded on March 15 would’ve been the old one. You should be able to email Amazon customer service and have them send the new file to your Kindle account, free of charge. You might need to go into your Kindle account and select “update” for the book … or maybe it will download automatically when you sync you device.
Happy reading! :)
I like it the way it is! Thanks for a great book.
You’re welcome, Susan, and thank you for reading! :)
I loved them, i have a habit for not finishing books so i am very choosy when selecting my books and i never choose any series, but after reading the review of Nolander I wanted to try it. Have to say Nolander was an exception for me, it drew me in right form the beginning, i am a huge fan of fantasy genre (and no i am not talking about Twilight fantasy more like Hobbit) and i’m not lying when i say i liked Nolander better that Hobbit, its more modernized and it feels near.The book has such an original story line with amazing characters (Williams is my favorite). Each chapter got better, it was so well written that i could imagine the S-Ems, straits, and Isolates clearly. The ending left me wanting more, I read Nolander in mid of 2013 so i had wait an agonizing year to get my hands on Solatium. It was worth the wait, this book topped the first one. Again the development of each character and story itself was amazing and i am just ecstatic about the new developments between Beth and Williams. I am looking forward to isolate myself again into the fantasy world with “Isolate”, in the mean while am gonna start the series again.
Catherine from Chennai (India)
You liked it better than … better than … better than THE HOBBIT??? :D
Seriously, Catherine, what an amazing compliment. Thank you! And I’m so glad you enjoyed the books so much. That’s wonderful to hear: *very* motivating as I work on Isolate. And I’m glad you like Williams! He’s awfully fun to write. :D
Cliff hangers are similar to building a house and stopping after the foundation and two walls are up.
Or maybe to building a house, pushing it halfway off a cliff, and then stopping? ;)
as someone else said, i don’t usually get into series books, since it is so hard to wait for the next book to come out when it is such a good story like this one.
i found your book included in the ‘gods and mortals’ amazon collection (free, which i couldn’t resist!) and was totally enthralled!
the ‘confusion’ was the most delightful part of beginning your (to me) new and fresh way of exposing the plot as you started out describing this adventure.
of course, i am going to have to buy the next one(s), but at least i don’t have to wait so long as some for the second one! =D
good work! very intriguing!
Just got pulled into this series and finished both books that are out so far, thank you for writing it! I thought it was a really interesting way to begin, and after finishing the books, it’s definitely understandable the way that they began, as it ties directly into the storyline. Looking forward to book three for sure!
Ok…so at the end of solatium, it is stated isolate would be out in the spring of 2016. It is now 2018. What happened to the third book? This is why I personally am not a fan of cliff hangers.
I’ve been waiting for 3 yrs now for the 3rd book to congee it in this series. What happened? It was supposed to be out in 2016. Did Becca die? What happened? The Nolander series was going great. Very disappointed. :(
If anyone knows why book 3 is still not out, please comment on here.
*earlier comment should’ve started with: “I’ve been waiting for 3 yrs now for the 3rd book to come out in this series…”
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