the latest on “lost dogs”

As of yesterday, Lost Dogs, my work-in-progress young adult science-fiction novel, was at 94,000 words, or about 220 single-spaced pages, and I’m rapidly finishing the initial draft.  Lost Dogs depicts life for a group of dogs—led by Buddy (a German Shepherd) and Sally (a Beagle-Basset mix)—on Kent Island, MD after aliens (or are they?) wipe out humanity in a single hot summer day.


I had hoped to be done with the draft on the first of July, but Real Life intrudes.  I have four short chapters to go, and I’m determined to wrap it up by the end of this month.


After that, I’ll need a week to go through the entire document and make (hopefully) minor revisions.  In particular, there is one scene at the end of the first act that I need to re-do, as I came up with something better after I had moved on.  I also need to nail down some of the “canine vocabulary” and make it consistent across the text.


After that, I’ll send copies of the manuscript to the beta readers I have lined up, and give them a few weeks to go through it and make suggestions.  While they’re doing that, I’ll be working on the cover with my artist friend James Arnold.


Concept art for cover and/or promotional material


I’ll incorporate beta reader corrections, comments, and suggestions as appropriate, and then it’s time for uploading to Amazon CreateSpace and final proofing, a fairly arduous process that I went through for Dragontamer’s Daughters, and am not looking forward to doing again.  Concurrent with that, I might do a pre-release promotion that I’ve never seen done before.


Such was my inexperience when I was writing and publishing DTD that I thought of it almost exclusively as a printed book, and the e-version was an afterthought on my part.  Not so with Lost Dogs: from the outset, I’ve envisioned it as a Kindle book and the printed version is secondary.  Nevertheless, I plan to have both available when I publish.


And when will that be?  I had hoped that would be August, but realistically, I think it will be the beginning of September.  My self-imposed hard deadline is that the book must be out by September 27, when I will be at the Baltimore Book Festival with my ESWA fellows.


Once it’s out, I intend to do some promotions in my community, which I’ll discuss when and if they materialize.  I’ve learned a lot from marketing DTD, and at the very least, I should spend less time on fruitless pursuits.


I currently have four beta readers lined up, but I would certainly welcome more.  If you’d like to be one, please e-mail me (kentonkilgoreATkentonkilgoreDOTcom).



Kenton Kilgore is the author of DRAGONTAMER’S DAUGHTERS, a two-part young adult fantasy novel based on Navajo culture and belief.  Look for his next work, LOST DOGS, a young adult  sci-fi novel, coming this summer.
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