Well, here we are: Release Day!

As of today, The Widening Gyre, my little space opera novel, is (theoretically) on store shelves!

If you can’t find it in hardcover or paperback at your local bookstore, you can either order it from them or you can order it from the links here on this site. Pick your retailer; we’ve got ’em all.

For you ebook fans, the book is available on Amazon, Kobo, and Apple Books.

Audiobook lovers can find it on Itunes, Audible/Amazon, and Google Play.

Over on Mary Robinette Kowal’s My Favorite Bits feature, I wrote about my favorite part of the book and why I liked writing it so much.

If you see the book in the wild, I’d love to see it! You can post pics on Twitter and @ me at @MREJohnston, or Instagram, where I’m @michaelr.johnston.

Good reading!

Debut Diary, Part 7: Launch Week Nerves

Here we are, 3 days and change from release. I’m mostly sanguine about it, at this point. The book is written and printed; the audiobook is recorded, the ebook is waiting for release–and of course, the only part of that I had anything to do with is the writing.

So I can sit back and relax now, right?

Well, no.

I’ve got an AMA scheduled on Reddit’s r/sciencefiction community on Monday the 11th, and there are several posts about the book going up for a little over a week–most of these I don’t have to write, but I do need to do more than sit back on my laurels. I need to be pushing the book, in as unobnoxious a way as I can, for at least a week, maybe more.

I’ve discovered that a lot of readers assume this kind of self-promotion is only the domain of self-published or Indie authors, the but the truth is, even writers published by Big 5 Publishers have to do a fair amount of this.

The truth is, though, that at this point, there is very little I can do. The book is edited, printed, and shipped. People will either buy it or they won’t. I obviously hope they do, but I’m also terrified about it.

My stuff. Out there. In people’s hands. The horror!

But also:

My stuff! Out there! In people’s hands! The joy!

I’ll keep updating as this whole thing continues.

FogCon Schedule

As some of you might now, I’ll be appearing at FogCon this weekend! I’m not a guest of honor, family, so calm down. But I will be on some panels!

It feels really weird to put this here, but if you’re coming to the con, here’s where I’ll be:

Reading with Ellen Kushner and Keyan Bowes

Each of us will read from our own works. Both Ms. Kushner and Ms. Bowes are excellent writers, and I’m really looking forward to this.

Saturday 10:30 – 11:45, Santa Rosa Room

Panel: “Friend” as code word

Panelists: Heather Rose Jones (Moderator), Nabil Hijazi, Michael R. Johnston, Ellen Klages, Ellen Kushner

Throughout LGBTQ history, “friend” was often a codeword for a different relationship — lover, partner, etc. This has been reflected in the literature that has come down to us from these earlier times, and has made a garden industry out of looking back and speculating where it does and not apply. The panelists will discuss “friend” as a code word in queer culture and literature, along with offshoots such as “friend of Dorothy” and the more modern usage of “family’ as queer chosen family.

Panel: Small Houses, Big Futures: Publishing SF with Small Presses

Panelists: Rebecca Gomez Farrell (Moderator), Jon Chaisson, Eileen Gunn, Michael R. Johnston, Dave Smeds

While many of us dream of a Big 5 deal, there are numerous Small Press publishers that are taking risks the larger publishers can’t, giving more writers access to the market. But that access comes with smaller (or no) advances and a larger proportion of labor on the author. What’s different about publishing with a Small Press vs. a big publishing house? How is the experience different, for the editor and for the writer?