Good morning, fantails!

I’ve been reading a lot of epic fantasy with large casts recently, and I got into a conversation with a friend who says they love epic fantasy but the can’t remember more than four characters, so they feel like it’s impossible for them to read. They wished they could just click on someone’s name and get a refresher of who they were, what they did in the last book, etc., and that’s all that kept them from reading epic fantasy.

And I went: Oh. Because, at least on Kindle, that’s possible. It takes some time and effort, but if that’s the only barrier between some readers and epic fantasy, count me in. And as someone whose memory isn’t perfect (thanks, clots), I can appreciate how this is also an accessibility feature.

So I’ve gone in and enabled the Kindle X-Ray feature for Eyrie, Ashen Weald, and Starling. You may need to nudge the book if you’ve already downloaded it (I clicked the … on the paperwhite, x-ray was greyed out, so I clicked book details. When I returned to the book, x-ray was magically working), but I’ve tested all three titles and got them working.

What information it’ll tell you: A brief description of the character and what they did in the previous books and their relationship to other characters. If you scroll down to the “Author’s Commentary” below, it’ll also list the bird+cat of each gryphon and opinicus character. I get a lot of questions about that, especially because they’re in an ecosystem without cats, so there’s no way to work that into the text, and the Author’s Commentary option should answer those questions. I’ll also sometimes include comments on characters who had a different role in earlier drafts or whose scenes always get cut before publication (Pink Paw).

What information it won’t tell you: spoilers for the current book you’re reading. I considered including easter eggs like, say, Younce being secretly afraid of fish, but I don’t want to make you feel like you need to click every name.

If you try out Kindle X-Ray and you like it, let me know. While it does take time away from writing, it’s not an unreasonable amount. I’m not sure if I can have it enabled the moment Reevesbane launches as there’s an approval process on our end and Amazon’s end, but I’ll give that a try, too.

In other news, the Mega Gryphon Twitter Giveaway (4 hardcovers + Younce plushie + Brenda Lyons signed print) is still going strong. It ends in a little under a month now. Reevesbane is getting its final proofing done (I’ll take a picture when my author proof arrives, the interior art is amazing). The outline for Crestfall was approved by my editor and I’ve started working on it.

I’ve got two smaller projects that I’m keeping a secret until they’re closer to being completed, but my focus is entirely on gryphons right now. I had that slowdown with the health problems and tests in the autumn, so I “only” had around 320,000 words of fiction published last year, three gryphon novels and the short story collection. My goal this year is four novels.