The first quarter of 2012 was very productive for my writing, even more than I had hoped it would be. Here’s a quick recap of what’s been going on:

1) I’m excited to say that Neutral Zone is back in the hands of beta readers for the first time in over a year. This last round of revisions was lengthy, and included using the techniques in Holly Lisle’s How to Revise Your Novel course. I think the book reads better now than it ever has before and I’m looking forward to what the beta readers have to say about it. Five people have it, a cross between writers and people whose opinion I trust. While it’s being read, I’m working to hone the blurb and the summary so after any additional revisions I make based on comments back from the betas, it can be ready to submit. Many thanks to the readers–Ben, Cheryl, Connor, Michael B and Michael O.–for agreeing to read and give that most valuable feedback.

Speaking of the blurb, here’s the one I’m using at the moment. It’s still subject to change, but it does give the basics of what the story is about:

Simon Roberts is a hockey playing high school senior looking forward to moving on to college and, hopefully, a scholarship to help him pay the way. His senior year is turned on its head from the start, however, when he discovers the crush he has on one of his teammates is actually mutual. Like any secret, the one Simon shares with Alex Miller doesn’t stay quiet long enough and the two have to deal with a coming out publicly while trying to stay on course to the state championships and college. What price will Simon pay for falling in love with his teammate?

2) “Friday Night Snacking,” which has languished for over a year now, recently got read by a publisher friend and, for the first time, I’ve got some actionable feedback that should help this vampire/werewolf/human story see the light of day. It’s too early to say for sure, but the feedback I got makes sense. Now it’s a matter of revising and I’m getting started on that this week.

3) Speaking of beta reading, I had the honor of reading the second book in Michael Offutt’s A Crisis of Two Worlds series. I read the first one, Slipstream (my review | Goodreads), earlier this year ahead of its May release. Reading Oculus was unlike any beta reading I’d done before. As a fan of the first book, I was excited to see where the story was going and to purely read for the enjoyment of it. But I couldn’t just read on that level since I had an important beta reading job to do too. I can say that loved where Michael took the story and I look forward to reading the final version of Oculus when it is completed.

4) Back on March 24, I attended the annual Rainbow Book Fair at the LGBT Center here in NYC. As usual this was a great event and, as usual, it was bigger this year than the previous. It’s good to see how LGBT publishing continues to grow with more publishers attending each year. The fair was a chance to meet up with Andrew Grey and Zarha Owens from Dreamspinner Press, J.M. Snyder from JMS Books and Ken Harrison from Seventh Window Publications (it was particularly great to meet Ken in person after so many Tweets). I didn’t have anything out, or “coming soon” for the fair this year, but the goal is to have something for 2013.

5) I haven’t forgotten about the news I shared at the start of the year either… The Adventures of Jake #1 is coming this summer from JMS Books as a standalone e-book. I should have more details in another month or so, so please stand by for those.