NEWS & BLOG
NEWS & BLOG
We were so pleased to get a great question from one of our wonderful readers, Jaime Lyn G., who was wondering how we got started.
Thanks for asking, Jaime Lyn! Co-authoring children’s fantasy novels started for us back in 2010-2011. Gael was writing historical romance for Avon/HarperCollins and Eric was a middle school teacher. Gael’s deadlines were longer than she needed to complete the projects for NY, so in the interim, we thought it would be fun to write something else—together. Middle grade fantasy was the genre that made us both fall in love with books as kids, so we decided to go back to our reading roots, give it a try, and just have fun with it as a project of the heart, whether it ever got published or not.
It all just kind of came together for us like chocolate and peanut butter. Gael, with her lifetime of writing experience and expertise in British history and Eric with his trial-by-fire (lol) understanding of how to keep a roomful of 13-year-olds entertained while educating. We just started brainstorming ideas, and The Gryphon Chronicles developed rather quickly. (Interestingly, Gael had noticed that many of her Jane Austen-era romances actually had some funny, scrappy kid secondary character running around in the background, like tagging along on the adult hero or heroine’s adventures. Early shades of Jake? FYI, her romances always have adventure or mystery subplots.) Anyway!
From the planning stages to completion, it took us probably about a year to get THE LOST HEIR finished. We had originally pitched the idea to Gael’s agent to find us a publisher and go the traditional publishing route, but their suggestions for changing it would’ve wrecked it, LOL. (Such as: Take out all the point-of-view sections except for Jake’s. And cut the story down to about half the length.)
So we said a polite “No, thank you,” and ultimately decided that it would be better to NOT take on two sets of high-pressure New York-publisher deadlines anyway (meaning, juggling both romance and children’s fantasy). For those two main reasons, we decided to go indie and self-published Book #1, THE LOST HEIR, in 2012, with no expectation of success. Just something that the many moms, aunts, grandmothers and other adult women who love G’s romances could share with their kids.
But behind the scenes, we were loving the genre and working together so much that we kept going with the series and put three books out in 2013: JAKE & THE GIANT, THE DARK PORTAL, & JAKE & THE GINGERBREAD WARS. That was when Amazon took notice, a rep contacted us, they flew us out to NY City for a Kindle self-publishing media event (us pictured below at the ice skating rink in Bryant Park) and they ended up running a BIG promo for the series. Books 1 & 2 went to the top 2 slots on the Amazon children’s bestseller list (even ahead of Harry Potter!!) and got lots of eyeballs on the series. That event kind of put us on the map and we’ve just been plugging along ever since, loving it more every day and so grateful that our readers make it possible and help us spread the word.
Hope that answers your question. Thanks again!!!
We have some AMAZING news that we've been dying to share with you. The time has come to let you in on our BIG Gryphon Chronicles secret. We think you're going to be very happy to hear that...
We're Adding 3 More Books to the Series!
From Eric: As many of you know, Book 7, THE DRAGON LORD, was originally going to be The End of The Gryphon Chronicles series. But a funny thing happened on the way through the first draft... If you have a minute, you might like to hear the story. It's amazing how "alive" some characters become, like a certain ex-pickpocket of our acquaintance.
You may have heard us share about our working method as a writing duo ~ how we plan and outline our stories together on big ol' white boards (see below), then Gael writes the first draft and hands off each clean-as-possible new chapter to me, then I go through it and find ways to make it even better, and we usually end up passing it back and forth a few times, trying to really nail each scene for our readers.
Even though Gael usually writes the scenes in linear order as they unfold, sometimes she gets inspired to jump ahead and work on one out of order. Being the right-brained type, she just flows with it. Well, one day, "The End" of the book called to her, the ending scene. So she started jotting down the dialogue between the two characters on the page, one of whom was Jake, and one Yet To Be Revealed in THE DRAGON LORD!
So the two characters had their conversation, and it was very heart-tugging, like endings are supposed to be. (She cried. She does that sometimes when she's writing, lol. Or I'll hear mischievous giggling coming from her office at the funny parts.)
She quickly drafted all the way to the end of this poignant little conversation ~ supposedly the final scene in the final Gryphon Chronicles book (sob!) ~ when, suddenly, a very strange thing happened.
Gaeley-girl, take it from here...
The True Story of Jake Chewing Me Out
From Gael: First of all, I'm not crazy, lol. Okay, maybe a little. All writers are, they say, but I'm perfectly harmless, I assure you.
So I'm sitting there at my desk crying like a sap over the ending to The Dragon Lord, and wondering how The Gryphon Chronicles could possibly be over. Then something happened which has NEVER happened to me before in my twenty-plus years as a full-time author.
Jake burst into my office, banging the door open with his telekinesis, marched right over to plant his hands on the other edge of my desk, and glared at me over my computer.
"Lady!" he said angrily. "If you think I'm leaving any time soon, you're barmy. I'm not going anywhere!"
Me: looking around, thinking, What is happening?
Then a sudden, totally vivid image filled my mind of exactly what could happen NEXT.
And a huge smile broke across my face. Jake faded back into Jake-world, satisfied he'd made his point, and I immediately shot up out of my chair and raced out of my office, yelling, "Honey, honey, you'll never believe this! The Gryphon Chronicles isn't over!"
And that, my friends, is the true story of how Jake got his way. (Heck, I wasn't about to mess with a doubler. Did you see what he did to those rock golems??)
From Jake: "Ha."
So, hooray, we've got more fun to look forward to with our Gryphon friends. Three additional books beyond THE DRAGON LORD await, and we are so excited to write them. The adventure continues...
Thank you for reading our books! We so appreciate you!
Best wishes and good luck in your upcoming school-year, kids! Even if school looks very different this year (like, your kitchen table and a teacher on a Zoom call) just do your best and try to have fun. This weird time will pass.
Teachers, librarians, and all the rest of you outstanding grown-ups who follow us, please stay safe, as well.
Sending healthy vibes out to everyone.
Eric & Gael, aka E.G. Foley
Hi Everyone, Exciting news!!! THE DRAGON LORD (The Gryphon Chronicles, Book 7) just went live on Amazon for Pre-Order. Eeee!!! Below is the new cover (ta-daaa!) and the back-of-the-book description. Also, we can now announce that the books official release date is Dec. 24th. Hope you'll check it out!
From the back cover…
Wickedness has seized the upper hand…
Will goodness fall? For Jake Everton and his trusty band of friends, the stakes now could not be higher. The Order stands on the precipice of destruction, as an unimaginable enemy rises from the Pit. With a dark prophecy swirling over his head, the intrepid Lord Griffon must make a wrenching sacrifice to save all he holds dear.
Don’t miss this sweeping tale of good versus evil in the next pulse-pounding installment of The Gryphon Chronicles, where the fate of the human and magical worlds alike may rest upon the courage of the plucky ex-pickpocket, his fierce pet Gryphon, and the gutsy young adventurers willing to follow him to the gates of Hades itself.
When Dani Met Jake
*FREE shipping on orders of $65 or more!
© E.G. Foley 2020