A couple of things:

1: No, the 2nd book isn’t out yet. I know you guys think I’m George RR Martin or something, but in actuality, this takes a lot of work. I’ve decided to go back and re-write a couple of chapters, also. Which I should reserve for when it’s done, but I needed to fix things while the thoughts were still fresh. I am putting in time writing, despite graduate studies. I promise. Those who contributed to last year’s Kickstarter will get all the goodies they were promised at a later date, but I do fully intend to ensure everyone gets their incentives, just like they did with the first book. You guys are rockstars!

2: I will NOT be at Rhode Island Comic Con this weekend. I offered to help at a local SCA event before I knew the date of the event, and got called out on the promise. I won’t rescind on it, so I’m skipping this year. That’s okay though. I’m very busy with school and getting the 2nd book done, that taking a break from conventions for a bit isn’t a bad thing.

3: I’m kicking around the idea of changing the working title from “The Overcast of Autumn” to something else. Dunno yet. It will speak to me when it pops out of the book just as the last one did.


No really, I did! And it’s so sweet, I decided to post it here and answer her question publicly:

Dear Ms. Costello,
I’m just writing to tell you that I found your short novel, “Of Summer and Winter” to be really great! My husband and I are both members of the SCA here in the Kingdom of Lochac [Australia] and your book came across a list that a fellow hobbyist posted. I am thrilled to hear that you are working on the completion of the next installment, but I do have a question for you if you do not mind: Does the emperor have a name? This is supposed to be when Alexius is the Byzantine Emperor, but as this is a piece of fiction, I assume that it is not, but we are curious.

We look foward [sic] to your next book and are recommending Of Summer and Winter to our friends and family here in NSW. [New South Wales]


Dear Lissa Down Under:
Thank you for the email! I have several friends in Lochac through Facebook and mailing lists, so I’m sure the fault is entirely on them that you discovered my book. I’m glad you enjoyed it!

In response to your question, yes, the Emperor does, in fact, have a name. I deliberately do not use it in order to make him seem “less human,” and you will see in “The Overcast of Autumn” that I often refer to him as the Usurper as well, but, as mentioned, I did pick a name for him, and perhaps when the time is right, I may reveal it. Until then, I’d like to keep him as vague as possible. You’re correct in assuming that he is not Alexius I. Alexius was a nice guy, this one isn’t. 😉 Though I did take some of the less savory traits as a whole from the Komnenos Dynasty, primarily Andronikos. I have played with the idea of introducing actual historical figures into the story, but then decided to keep it completely alternative and fictional. It gives me more leeway.

Thanks for writing! Please send me your mailing address so I can send you some goodies. 🙂


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