Happy February, Shadowhunters! We are now ten months away from the release of Cassandra Clare’s Queen of Air and Darkness – out December 4 – but before we find out what is going to happen to the Blackthorns and Emma in the final installment of The Dark Artifices, we get to read Ghosts of the Shadow Market. 🙂
Publishers Weekly posted a very interesting article about Cassie’s upcoming short story collection and we are sharing the most interesting parts:
The idea [for Ghosts of the Shadow Market] was hatched by the poolside in a small village outside Florence at the group’s 2017 retreat. “We were talking through aspects of our world-building,” said Clare, “and I was talking specifically about the Shadow Market. It’s sort of a lawless place in my books, where you can buy shady things and exchange shady goods for shady services.” When others in the group expressed interest in telling a series of co-authored stories that revolved around the market, the series was born.
Kelly Link is one of the co-authors of the current series and was among the writers at the retreat. A co-founder and owner of Easthampton, Mass.-based Small Beer Press, Link proposed that Clare self-publish the books instead of turning to her longtime publisher Simon & Schuster. To Link, the idea seemed like a natural step.
“There are a lot of writers who don’t want to be distracted by [publishing], but Cassandra is a very smart businessperson,” said Link. “She also has enormous reach in terms of audience.” As a result, Clare does not face the same challenges in getting books to readers faced by small presses and self-publishers.”
Clare and the others jumped at the idea. “It’s a cool project and exciting to have this level of minute control that we don’t normally have when we publish,” said Clare, who formed a company called Shadow Market Enterprises to house the venture. Clare is now directly in charge of coordinating everything from content to covers, ensuring that all of it comes together much faster than a traditional publishing process. In order to avoid spoilers, all of the books will be released before Simon & Schuster’s December publication of Queen of Air and Darkness, the next book in The Shadowhunter Chronicles.
Clare has enjoyed a similarly straightforward and supportive working relationship with Simon & Schuster. “None of this is about not wanting to work with my publisher,” she said. Instead, when she approached her editors at S&S about the idea, they replied, “We saw this coming.”
“I’m kind of a control freak,” said Clare. “They were like, ‘Yeah, let’s let her work this stuff out.’ ” In turn, Clare has worked out an arrangement with S&S to publish the full collection of stories as an anthology next year. The volume will include two additional stories that will not be released this year in digital form. “To me, that’s totally practical in terms of distribution,” said Clare. “Doing this for e-book short stories is one thing, but I would not want to self-publish a hardcover.”
Overall, Clare called the collaborative process “invigorating,” adding, “It’s a unique thing to do, and it’s grown out of the way we work together as a group.” That’s due, in no small part, to the retreats that began in the frozen house in Mexico years ago. “Now we’re so involved in each other’s creative processes,” said Clare, “and it’s because of that we’re able to do these kinds of projects.”
Cassie also talked about her new project in her latest newsletter and shared “the first two stories of Ghosts of the Shadow Market are done, and I can’t wait for you guys to have a chance to read them.”
We are incredibly excited for these new short stories and cannot wait to read Son of the Dawn, which is going to be available as an ebook on April 10!