FAQ about Slayers: The Dragon Lords (Yes, there is a fifth book)

Will there be a fifth book?

I got an email last night from a lady telling me that the book didn’t seem to be complete. “So many issues were left unresolved,” she told me. “I thought you said this was the last book and you were going to write two different endings.”

Yeah. I did say that. And if you didn’t read the dedication (who reads those?) or you didn’t catch my posts on Facebook bemoaning the fact that the book was too long and I was having to split it once again, you might be very unsatisfied by the ending.

Yes, there is one last book in the series. It is mostly written. (I have a couple scenes left to write) And there will be a Team Jesse ending and a Team Dirk ending so you’ll have to choose which one you want to read.

Will the book be available in paperback?

Yes.

Before a physical cover can be designed, the book needs to be typeset, which is happening now. So it will still be a few weeks until it’s available. It would already be available if I didn’t have the habit of changing things right until the last moment. But no. I’m probably still going to make some small changes from the ebook to the physical book.

If you have any other questions, ask in the comment section and I’ll answer them.


Comments

FAQ about Slayers: The Dragon Lords (Yes, there is a fifth book) — 20 Comments

  1. I really have to ask, since there’s going to be 2 endings to this, how would you handle series continuity if you make say, a 2nd arc to this series?

    So maybe it takes place 5 years or so after the 5th book, but depending on which ending you read in that book, certain characters died or didn’t die. Maybe Jesse and Dirk are mutually exclusive characters, save 1 or the other but not both. In Dirk’s ending maybe Khan and Minerva survive, in Jesse’s ending maybe they don’t. So many possibilities.

    So how would you handle it? Would you do something like what the Drakengard game series did where they outright state at the start of the 2nd game which of the 5 endings was canon?

    • That is a really good question. When I first talked to my publisher (Macmillan did the first two books) about having two different endings, one of their suggestions was to release the ebook first, have people vote as to which ending was their favorite, and then that one would be the ending in the physical book. But since I’m now releasing the last book (which ended up being three books) on my own, I just figured I would make two different physical books and people could order whichever they wanted.

      And I’ve never given any thought to what I would do if I ever released more books. Because it’s been hard enough to get these three out. (But I am going to miss these characters when I’m finished.)

      I wasn’t trying to make the endings veer too far apart from each other but the way they turned out (without giving you too much of a spoiler) in one ending I had a certain character die and in another that character didn’t die. In one Dirk made amends with his mom, in the other he didn’t as much. But in each case, I liked one element better and so changed them so that both endings went that way.

      The big problem with writing two different endings–and why I’ll never do it again–is that now neither feel completely real to me because I can’t choose between them.

      So if I ever write more I’ll just have to either choose one ending or I could break her up from either guy and move events down the timeline. I mean, she is a junior in high school so it’s not like she getting married at the end of the book. Anything could happen in that regard.

  2. Ah I see, so it’s not a totally drastic difference between the 2 endings. Will there be an epilogue in book 5? No matter what happens, the use of dragons in modern warfare for the first time is going to have some major ramifications for leaders all across the world.

    Will there be a section at the end that has the characters discuss how nations and people around the world are reacting to the presence of dragons, especially since they now know exactly what they can do? So perhaps different entities would be actively seeking dragons now, but for different purposes.

    The military might be interested in their use in spec ops units (coming from the military myself, I can totally see the benefits of your dragons in this area), whereas scientists might be interested in finding out how dragons produce EMPs biologically as well as ways to shield infrastructure from it.

    I’d also like to know, in Slayers canon lore, are the Overdrakes the only Dragonlord family that still harbors dragons at all? Are there any other families or organisations across the globe that might be harboring them?

    Thanks!! I know I’m asking so many things (even potentially spoilery ones), but your universe is just so interesting XD

    • I’m glad you find the world interesting.

      Yes, there is a little bit of discussion about the future of dragons and how they could be used (or prevented from being used) on the world stage.

      Originally I wasn’t going to have the Overdrakes be the only ones. I first wrote the ending so that after the climax, some other dragon lords showed up who had been living on a different island. (They had thought they were the only ones until the attack happened and just wanted to keep the dragons safe and out of the wrong hands.) But it felt a little too much like Deus ex Machina. And it sort of took away some of the tension. You know, if good dragon lords were going to show up after the attack, then the Slayers hadn’t been in as much danger for the last five books as we thought. They could have just waited around for help to show up.

      So I took that out. But I keep considering putting something like that back in because otherwise, the dragon lords that are left (I won’t let you know if they all make it through the climax unscathed) will have the responsibility of taking care of a bunch of dragons. Which would be a hassle.

      • Thats indeed quite the dilemma, perhaps instead of simply having the other dragon lords pop up out of nowhere, the overarching lore could be that other regions of the world already had their own dragon lords, but they weren’t totally secretive like Overdrake was, but were known to top government or military personnel who worked to keep them out of the public eye for conservation purposes.

        Another alternative I can think of is something akin to the Harry Potter series, where dragons are hidden and protected by a secret council of dragon lords, and Overdrake’s family might simply the rouge outlier who stole some eggs in the past. This would allow for immediate retaliation by any neutral dragon lords present in the aftermath of Overdrake’s preemptive strike, so it would be less of a Deus ex Machina, but then you’d have the storm of having slayers having to work with them. But of course how you handle it is up to you ^^

        Apart from handling the issue of dragons post climax, are there other types of dragons in the series? In historical mythology dragons come in various forms such as wyverns and serpents, but in your books we’ve only seen the standard “western” dragon (2 wings, 4 legs). Do other variants exist?

        I also have a question regarding dragon temperaments. In the initial books, they were painted more as savage creatures who needed a dragon lord’s mind domination to handle. But in the later books it would seem that your stance has softened quite a bit. Perhaps its because we now have Dirk’s point of view, dragons seem to be painted as being more as Apex predators that would normally kill any human, but which could have some semblance of relationships formed with them.

        I can’t rmb which book it was, but there was 1 where u mentioned that Tamerlance eventually stopped challenging Dirk and was essentially domesticated, and in your recent previews Aaron really seemed close to Khan as well. Quite different temperaments from your initial Slayers book. So are they something like velociraptors from Jurassic World? Creatures that can’t ever really be truly tamed (not in a cuddly way at any rate), but whose experiences can shape their own personalities in life?

        • Dirk definitely has different viewpoints about dragons than the Slayers, so as the series progresses and you get more of his point of view, you should begin to question whether the Slayers are right to want to kill all of the dragons. Dragons can be used as a serious weapon to change the balance of power. They can give the wrong people the upper hand and seriously damage civilization. If one could eradicate all of the guns in the world or all of the bombs, would that be a good thing to do?
          But at the same time, they’re living beings. And extinction is forever.
          I view them like lions and tigers. Some people own these sorts of animals as pets. And very often they can seem tame just like Tamerlane seemed tame to Dirk–and in many ways the older dragons are tame with Dirk and Overdrake. But just because those pet lions and tigers seem domesticated to their owners, doesn’t mean they are. We’ve seen the news stories of these animals turning on their owners. In fact, we’ve seen news stories of dogs turning on their owners.
          If saving or killing dragons was clear cut, Tori wouldn’t have much of a struggle figuring out how she should act. It’s better to let your characters struggle.
          That said, at this point in the series you should probably have figured out that I couldn’t bring myself to kill off all of the dragons. Dirk would be too devastated by that. (I can’t even turn away stray cats, and they’re in no danger of extinction.)

          • I’d say you’ve done a fabulous job of introducing moral ambiguity into the decision to save or kill the dragons. When I read your first book, I had already accepted the series having an ending where the dragons were exterminated for the greater good of humanity because of their nature, but that opinion has changed with your recent books, as I’m now actively rooting for the survival of the dragons in any engagement!

            I also suspected that you wouldn’t kill off all the dragons around the time I finished book 3, although I’m more than happy to see you confirm it! I’m looking forward to the end when Tori and Aaron have to convince Dr. B and the rest of the slayers to spare what surviving dragons, fledglings and eggs are left. I’m also really curious about that epilogue u also mentioned XD

            Is there a rough time frame for when book 5 will be out?

    • Two of my beta readers actually suggested I write an ending where Overdrake does indeed rule the country–which I thought was funny because I actually considered that ending–having the Slayers initially lose and having Overdrake be dictator for a while. Dirk and Tori are still young. Maybe it will eventually happen…

  3. First, I LOVE the entire series, and it’s only gotten better. Thank you!
    Second, how much of a difference is there between the two endings? I’m on team Jesse (who knew reading was a team sport?) and my friends are all team Dirk. Is it only one chapter, or more like a quarter of the book?
    Again, thank you for writing such a great series! …I bought 4 the day before yesterday and I’m already done lol
    P.S.– If the Slayers world was real, would you be a dragon lord or a Slayer?

    • Thanks for loving the series! You are clearly brilliant. (And if you haven’t left reviews, please do.) Most of book five will be the same. There were more difference between them originally. (In one–this isn’t a spoiler because it ends up not happening in either version now–a character died and in another he didn’t) But I ended up liking the version where he lived more than the one where he died so I brought him back to life. In one version Dirk reconciled with his mom more than the other version and I ended up like the reconciliation better, so I changed that in the other version too. Although since I’m not done with it, who knows–things might change again.
      If you had asked me during the first book, I would have said I would definitely be a Slayer. When I started that book, I didn’t even mean for Dirk to be a love interest. (But I modeled him on Dirk Benedict and so he seemed to have a mind of his own.) And then through the series as Dirk and his life have become more developed, I realized that he’s in a lot of ways the main character of the series. It’s his decisions that shape the story.
      Another interesting thing has happened as I’ve written the story. Two of my beta readers (one of them my daughter) told me that they started rooting for Overdrake to take over the country and fix it. Many people have told me that they don’t want me to kill off all of the dragons. So yeah, perceptions change over the series.
      Would I be a Slayer or a dragon lord? Dragons would be cool to have around, but really dangerous. EMP could actually change the balance of power just as guns and bombs did. Plus if you’re not careful, they’ll eat you. That’s a drawback.
      Still, I doubt I would be able to bring myself to kill them. I’m a sucker for stray animals, (I’ve had six stray cats over the last seventeen years.) I somehow doubt I’d be able to kill an endangered species–unless it was attacking my friends and family. Then Then I would totally take it out.
      So I guess I’d be a bad Slayer or a bad dragon lord, depending on how you looked at it.

      • Thank you for answering my question! Honestly, it’s great that you answer your readers. It really is appreciated!
        I really like the idea of Dirk reconciling with his mom. It would make the story feel more finished, and who doesn’t like a happy ending?
        I also noticed that Dirk has kind of become the main character. I like that too though. He’s relatable to a lot of people…minus the tyrannical-dictator dad with a mind to conquer America. But you know. It’s the fact that he has to deal with morally ambiguous situations and make very mature decisions before he’s really an adult. He’s the most relatable character in the sense that he has his struggles. Not all kids have good relationships with their parents. Some are in spots where there isn’t a clear answer. My hat’s off to you for writing a complicated character so well!
        By the way, I’m a sucker for strays too. Our dog was a stray, and even though my parents said we’d only nurse him back to health…I mean, how can you say no to a cute dog? My cat too. She’s the best.
        I’ve got the same issues with choosing a side.
        Thanks again!

        Ps…again: My friends and I have always enjoyed all of the activities that drew the Slayers to dragon camp. Thumbs up for accuracy!
        Pps: Sorry for the long comment. I got going and went!

  4. Hi, I just finished Fight Fire with Fire yesterday and I want to read the Fourth boom so I was wondering if it was out on paperback?

  5. After Slayers is finished, what books are coming next? Im hoping for another Fair Godmother of a sequel to Just One Wish!!

    • Actually I have a cowboy romance that is part of series (with the awesome ladies in my writer’s group) and then I’ve promised my agent that I would finish the WWII romance he’s been waiting for. So Chrissy will have to wait even longer to get into Fairy Godmother University.

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