At (very) long and (truly) last, Alderpod #32 is live. There were a few reasons that it took so long, and most of them have to do with having a three-year-old, writing other stuff, working as a freelancer, and technical issues. I literally recorded this a total of five times, with tons of takes in between. Either I kept getting interrupted, the program crashed (go go GarageBand), or the microphone was making weird popping noises.

*deep breath*

Anyway! This epilogue takes us back to Hartleigh Castle, where Denna is recovering from the Ardesian assault; the excerpt concerns Cora and the Order of the Asp, and hopefully answers a few questions, while posing a few more. Can’t reveal everything now, can I?

A tremendous thanks to those of you who’ve been patient, and those who have stuck around. I’ve had such fun telling this story and sharing it with you. I’ll keep you updated as to possible other podcasts in the future, as well as current projects, steampunk and otherwise.

Cheers!

I discovered, after talking to Brigid Ashwood and my husband, that something was wrong with the first two podcasts for Alderpod. How long this has been an issue? I have no idea. But it’s rather… um, embarrassing. I know it was working right at some point, rather than doubling the prologue, but well… now it’s fixed. So, hopefully, if you’ve been listening you can re-download #2 and indeed get Chapter One, rather than a second prologue…

*head, desk*

Anyway. I have to hope that enough people figured that out, or had listened to it other ways, or can simply follow along. I’m assuming some folks have…

Agh. I periodically check the feed, but I couldn’t tell that it was downloading the wrong file. I wish I had caught this earlier…

Chapter 28 – As It Goes; Chapter 29 – Fire & Rain

Well. There you go. The last two chapters in one long podcast. The reason? I was definitely in a groove recording this, and I wanted to keep that energy going throughout the recording. Since the two chapters are connected to one another, simply a continuation of the scene, I thought I’d read it all at one go.

There will be, as I mentioned, an epilogue. But, by and large, this is the actual ending of the book.

I’m not sure what to say, really. The story, at this point, rather has to speak for itself, doesn’t it? Admittedly this is the most nervous I’ve ever been to release a podcast, because this is where the rubber meats the road, where the grease meets the gear. It’s the end of this part of the story.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this little adventure as much as I have.

ModeArtistiqueMai1880Last night I recorded the last two chapters of The Aldersgate for Alderpod.

I don’t know what I was expecting to feel. I mean, I haven’t actually been writing in the draft in months. I’ve had my head in other projects, so maybe it was the distance that did it. But finishing it, reading that last bit, then adding the music and hearing it back again. Well, it was a little emotional for me. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that my sister’s voice is there at the end, too…

But it’s more than that. Finishing a book is a weird process, especially when you’re expecting to write more later. The Aldersgate was never envisioned, to me anyway, as just one book. But, still, it’s got to be able to stand on its own. Even though some of the plot points won’t get resolved for a while, it’s important that each of the characters complete their own journeys.

And I think, above all, that’s what I’m most pleased with. The book has room for tightening in a lot of places. But such are revisions. I can get away with some stuff in reading that likely I can’t in writing. Just one of the weird ways the audiobook and physical book differ. But, back to the characters. I like the way the book ends because the main characters–in this case, Cora, Emry, and Brick–really come into their own. I won’t go spoilery on you, and it’s not that they all figure it out perfectly, or that’s it’s a happy ending. It can’t really be (as in the case of Sylvan and Ellin).

Anyway I’m babbling. The coffee’s not yet kicked in. At some point today I’ve got to go and put the tags on the file, and listen one more time to make sure it’s as good as I can get it.

And now, this begs the question: what to do next? The podcast has been going on for the last year and change (the prologue went live on April 22, 2008). As I mentioned at the beginning, reading aloud is just a part of my writing process, and it may be that I choose to do another podcast just… well, because there’s going to be a gaping hole where Alderpod once was!

Regardless, there will be at least one more Alderpod, wherein there is an epilogue. It will help set up some of the background for The Ward of the Rose, as well as tie up what happened with Kaythra Bav, Alastair Grey, and Denna Grey. So it’s not the end of the end. I guess no story is really ever over, anyway…

Chapter 27: Precipice

I’m just crankin’ these out, huh? Well, finally (finally!) the audio issue is resolved. The setup works, and works so much better than what I had before. I cannot tell you the frustration! I hope you’ll hear the difference in the podcast, as I didn’t have to mask the track with a million filters to keep out the background noise; I definitely feel as if it’s much more authentic to the way I sound, and of a quality of which I’m more proud. Eventually, I may go back and record all the tracks again, just to get consistency. But when I started this podcast in April of 2008, I don’t think I even contemplated what it’d be like when I reached this point…

Well. Two chapters to go. That feels weird! What on earth will I do when it’s over?!

Chapter 26: Preparation

Once again, here we are. I’ve been having a little bit of frustration with my recording equipment, and hopefully by the end of this week I’ll have a totally new setup: phantom power here I come! I’m working on ways to keep background noise to a minimum, which has been an issue throughout the podcast, but I did my best.

As I mention in the podcast itself, music is by my beautiful and talented sister, Llana Barron. You’ll be hearing this music again, so keep your ears open. Only three more chapters to go friends, and this ride will come to an end. Thanks so much for listening along the way…

As I’ve mentioned before, my sister and I had a certainly magical childhood. Much of my love of writing came from the stories we put together ourselves. I was writing novel-length books when I was a teenager, and she was often my collaborator–sometimes literally. We wrote a book together!

Well, Llana is not only a more remarkable and talented woman in her own right, but she’s also currently fighting Hodgkins Lymphoma; her last chemotherapy treatment is tomorrow, in fact.

About a week ago, I was telling her that I needed some extra music for Alderpod, and asked her if she’d put something together, if she wanted. She’s done instrumental work before, and I had a feeling that she might enjoy doing something apart from feeling like crud. I told her a cross between Unforgiven or Young Guns and The Lord of the Rings, then really let her just have at it. Honestly, I didn’t think I’d hear back from her for a while.

We’ve collaborated musically and imaginatively all our lives, so I should have expected it. But when I heard her piece (which is 6:00 long!) I was absolutely blown over. I still can’t listen to it without tearing up. There’s something about the art produced from people that have had the same upbringing, who have steered the same steely seas together, and it’s quite beyond words. So, I’ll leave it there.

So here, for your enjoyment, is the piece of music, which will be featured in the last few Alderpod episodes as I gear up (pun intended) for the very end. As everything on the site, it is Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike 3.0, etc.

The Territories

To learn more about Llana, and read about her fight–and her art–you can visit her website at Llana Barron.