For you see, I have exciting news that I cannot keep to myself - the manuscript draft for Dreams Given Form: The Unofficial Guide to the Babylon 5 Universe is done! Done! DONE!!!! As in, the final bits were sent to our editor today! As in, so recently that my final Post-It notes and flags are still stuck to the edge of my desk where I put them as I finished with each portion they were marking in the final few days of drafting.
Now, there's still work to be done that will take a minimum of several months. We've been sending each "chunk" to our editor as we finished it, so a good portion has already gone through the initial edits, but remember that Dreams Given Form is an ambitious piece of work that brings together everything that has been designated as canonical for Babylon 5 - the episodes, the movies, Crusade, the novels, the comics, and the short stories, as well as some "extras." (I drew the line at action figures . . .) That made for a crazy amount of work, even with wonderful materials such as The Lurker's Guide and Terry Jones' exhaustive chronology, which was so detailed it was adopted by the production company to keep timelines straight. (I swear, the implications of "War without End" on later works nearly drove me to tears a couple of times and Terry saved my bacon.)
Plus, this project came to a screeching halt when I was diagnosed with ductal carcinoma in situ (think "junior auxiliary breast cancer") until I completed radiation treatment and got my strength and energy levels back. (Imagine a disease in which voluntarily subjecting yourself to radiation sickness is the best scenario and you'll understand why research and writing fell low on the list.) So publication was delayed, but it's all in the editing stage now!
We weren't able to reach one goal - we wanted to get the rights to reprint the six canonical short stories since they've never been collected in one place, but Warner Brothers has no interest in that, which is their prerogative as the copyright holder. Still, we include summaries, analysis, and highlights from each of those in Dreams Given Form. Also, we still have a few interview requests out there and we have our fingers crossed, but those chips will fall where they may.
We'll start conversations with our publisher, ECW Press, about cover design and possible sites to promote the book, which will be available in 2017 - we'll announce specific details when we know more.
For now, though, I think Ensley and I have some serious celebrating to do, because right now, everybody's cute. And in purple, I'm stunning.