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Exciting news today: My second novel, The Summer Son, has been acquired by AmazonEncore, the new publishing arm of the online giant.

The book will emerge sometime in the early part of 2011. It is available for pre-sale in print and Kindle versions.

To say that I am thrilled to be joining up with AmazonEncore is, perhaps, to understate the matter. Beyond good writing and a compelling story and a bit of luck, a book needs powerful marketing to make inroads with readers, and AmazonEncore boasts an unparalleled worldwide reach and a proven ability to match books and the people who love them. AmazonEncore has been making a splash of late by giving second chances to independently released books, publishing a handful of original manuscripts (as it will with mine) and, more recently, striking a deal with author J.A. Konrath that left industry tongues wagging (also choice reading is Konrath’s rebuttal to that Publishers Weekly article). Publishing is an area with few sure-fire bets, but here’s one of them: Whatever the future holds, Amazon is going to be a major player. I’m gratified to be able to jump aboard.

(Just as an aside: At some future date, I may have to write a memoir of publishing with the working title Dude, WTF? Consider: Wrote my first novel in 24 days. Self-published it. Got picked up by a regional publisher and re-released in less than a year. Won some nice notices. Some really nice notices. Prepared to launch my second novel with my own literary press. Hooked up instead with an ascendant publisher with unmatched insight into consumer behavior. All in a little more than 18 months. I’m blessed, and very, very, very fortunate.)

As noted above, this move does scuttle my earlier plan to make The Summer Son the initial release of my small literary press, Missouri Breaks. That publishing venture is still a go, however, and I anticipate being able to soon make an exciting annoucement about a couple of forthcoming books.

In the meantime, with my schedule suddenly cleared of all the production duties I had anticipated, I now find myself in the happy position of being able to spend the next few months of waiting out The Summer Son by getting down the road with Novel No. 3.

Thanks for riding along.

For the most part, 600 Hours of Edward has cycled through its critical reviews — suffering little more than flesh wounds along the way, I’m happy to report — but I knew that Montana Quarterly was one of the ones yet to come in.

It turns out that the June issue was worth waiting for. From the review:

This is a wonderful book. Mr. Lancaster’s journey from the daily life of journalism at the Billings Gazette into the imaginative pages of fiction was one well taken, for himself, for readers and certainly for the lovingly created Edward Stanton.
Click here for a PDF of the entire review, published with permission from Montana Quarterly.

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