Twelve Days for the Twelve Kingdoms


As Veronica hinted in her post yesterday, I have similar exciting news! The duology that Grace Draven and I did together, FOR CROWN AND KINGDOM, was picked as one of the Best Books of 2016 by Library Journal!! We are over the moon. What tremendous validation for our joint effort.

Which means, of course, that we’ll have to do another!

I think the others of the SFF Seven are trying to drive me mad, because this week’s topic is Flash Fiction Based on Your Favorite Holiday/Festival Carol/Song/Hymn. Since I’m looking at the December 27 release of THE EDGE OF THE BLADE, I decided to riff on Jepp’s Twelve Days of Christmas. Now, the world Jepp lives in doesn’t have Christmas, and if it did, she’d probably loathe this song, but she still can give it her own particular spin. Come on over to see what I came up with!

The Right Words at the Right Time – Supporting Newbie Authors


THE CROWN OF THE QUEEN will be available as a stand-alone novella on November 22! (You can preorder now at Amazon, Kobo and Smashwords.) If you already have FOR CROWN AND KINGDOM, this is the exact same novella in that duology with Grace Draven. You can get mine alone for $2.99 or both of us for $3.99. A deal, either way!! If you haven’t read it, THE CROWN OF THE QUEEN takes place between THE TALON OF THE HAWK and THE PAGES OF THE MIND. It’s told from Dafne’s point of view and bridges the events in the aftermath of TALON and sets up her book, which is PAGES.

Our topic at the SFF Seven this week is “The person(s) most influential on my early writing career.” Come on over to find out who made all the difference for me when I needed it most

Overcoming Two Towers Syndrome

CjzfuodUoAAK69GIt’s been a great week for my duology with Grace Draven, FOR CROWN AND KINGDOM! I’m frankly astonished at the response and grateful to all of you enthusiastic readers. If you’d still like to pick up a copy, here are some linkys:

Barnes & Noble

Now that the promo pony parade is wearing down for both this release and for THE PAGES OF THE MIND, which also released last week to the best rankings that series has seen so far (yay – thank you!!), I’m turning my attention back to book two in this new series I’m writing, The Sorcerous Moons. Book one, LONEN’S WAR, is done and I have an actual blurb now!

An Unquiet Heart 

Alone in her tower, Princess Oria has spent too long studying her people’s barbarian enemies, the Destrye—and neglected the search for calm that will control her magic and release her to society. Her restlessness makes meditation hopeless and her fragility renders human companionship unbearable. Oria is near giving up. Then the Destrye attack, and her people’s lives depend on her handling of their prince…  

A Fight Without Hope 

When the cornered Destrye decided to strike back, Lonen never thought he’d live through the battle, let alone demand justice as a conqueror. And yet he must keep up his guard against the sorceress who speaks for the city. Oria’s people are devious, her claims of ignorance absurd. The frank honesty her eyes promise could be just one more layer of deception.  

A Savage Bargain 

Fighting for time and trust, Oria and Lonen have one final sacrifice to choose… before an even greater threat consumes them all.

Book two is called ORIA’S GAMBIT and it’s slow going so far. I’m working hard to keep from hitting Two Towers Syndrome, which is a common pitfall of second books in trilogies – and I’m over at Here Be Magic talking about what happens in that syndrome and how to overcome it

Oops. When a Deleted Scene Becomes a Novella

For Crown and Kingdom coverThis month’s theme at one of my group blogs is The Cutting Room floor, where everyone will share deleted scenes or talk about the revision process.

It’s apropos timing for me – and I thought I’d share here, too – because just this week I released a novella that’s essentially one big deleted scene.


And, really – I almost never do this. I save pretty much everything I cut from manuscripts, which typically isn’t much. The revision process for me almost always consists of adding, not deleting. However, I’m usually of the opinion that I cut them for a reason and they don’t need to ever see the light of day.Crown-of-the-Queen-Final-Type small

This novella, The Crown of the Queen, is with Grace Draven’s The Undying King in our brand new duology FOR CROWN AND KINGDOM. And it’s obviously seeing the light of day in a big way.

pagescover397See, what happened was that I wrote THE PAGES OF THE MIND, which is technically book one in The Uncharted Realms, but chronologically follows book three in The Twelve Kingdoms, THE TALON OF THE HAWK. The way my story brain works, and because I moved to a new point of view (POV), I picked up the tale with the heroine of the new book, Dafne, who’d been left behind in Annfwn for safety and wasn’t there for the climax of the ultimate events in TALON. This was important to me for a number of reasons. One is that it’s key to Dafne’s character – and her journey – that she’s always sidelined. She’s been forever on the fringes of everyone else’s adventures. So, she needed to start from that place. Another reason is that she discovers things in the Annfwn library that become relevant much later.

There was one huge problem with this – by the time I finished THE PAGES OF THE MIND, it was 1) too long, and 2) took way too long to get to the heart of the story. My editor asked me to decapitate the book (his actual words), which meant cutting about 17,000 words. I wasn’t surprised, as I’d worried the story would be too top-heavy, but I also felt that part of the story formed a critical bridge and needed to be told. My editor, frankly relieved that I didn’t have a fit over the “suggestion,” suggested that I self-publish the story as a novella.The Undying King cover

Serendipitously enough, Grace Draven had asked me to do a duology with her around the same time, so woo hoo!! I revised and expanded Dafne’s interim story to 26K and called it THE CROWN OF THE QUEEN. Amusingly, Grace also expanded her story considerably and it’s as lovely as all of her work.

Two epic tales of Fantasy romance from Jeffe Kennedy and Grace Draven.


The Crown of the Queen: a novella of the Twelve Kingdoms

It’s been a lifetime since librarian Dafne Mailloux saw the coronation of the tyrant who destroyed her family. She did her part to pull him off the High Throne. But his daughter, the would-be Queen, and her sisters must still tame their conquest. If her victory is to last, Dafne must forge peace with the subtle, ruthless methods of a diplomat—and the worst memories of her life . . .

The Undying King

The stories are told in whispers, even after so long:  of a man whose fair rule soured when he attained eternal youth.  Imprisoned by a sorceress wife in a city out of time and place, he has passed into legend.  Few believe in him, and fewer would set their hopes on his mercy.  But Imogen has no choice.  To break the curse that’s isolated her since birth, she’ll find the Undying King—and answer his secrets with her own…

Buy the Book

How to Write Through the Bad Times

The Undying King cover

Hi all!!

I’m back online after about ten days away and look what I returned to! The fantabulous Grace Draven shared the cover for her story in our duology FOR CROWN AND KINGDOM. Her story is THE UNDYING KING and, wow – I dunno about you guys, but I’d take him for my forever king anytime!ChsYKYhVIAAHGw2

I like how her story cover works with mine, her hero and my heroine gazing out at the reader with an implicit call to adventure. Both individual covers will be included inside the digital versions, which should be very cool!Cim_r8YUYAA2v9D

The duology technically releases on Tuesday, May 31, the same day as THE PAGES OF THE MIND. That said, I believe buy links will be going up very soon! 

I’m over at the SFF Seven today, talking about Writers in the Storm – handling adversity, stress, and generally terrible shit while still producing

Cover Reveal! For Crown and Kingdom

Sword hilt on blue backgroundA couple of years ago, in the fall of 2013, I read a book called MASTER OF CROWS – because Ericka at Bookpushers nagged me into it. I loved that book every bit as much as she promised I would. Because it’s my thing, I began stalking  following the author, Grace Draven.

I must have been fairly subtle in my efforts, because we didn’t become actual Facebook friends until the following October. (Facebook: The Ultimate Metric for Everything About Our Social Lives.) We became virtual friends, then met in real life at the RT Convention in Dallas the following spring. Let me tell you folks – we had an epic, nearly three-hour “coffee” meeting. You know when you meet someone and just immediately click? We had that. Toward the very end (I think once she decided I wasn’t a psycho stalker), Grace asked if I’d be interested in doing a duology with her. My answer?

Pride & Prejudice, Jane Bennett, "a thousand times, yes"

Fast forward to a year later and we did it! FOR CROWN AND KINGDOM comes out May 31! Dafne holding the crown of the Thirteen Kingdoms with the stained glass window behind herIt contains my story, THE CROWN OF THE QUEEN, which takes place in the aftermath of THE TALON OF THE HAWK and ends right where THE PAGES OF THE MIND begins, which is also out May 31. the pages of the mindGrace’s story is a stand-alone called THE UNDYING KING. 

Grace designed this fabulous cover for the duology and we released it last night to the interwebz with great joy. 

We exchanged the following messages:Jeffe: "I'm grabbing your hands and dancing you in a mad circle." Grace: "and I'm signing warbly and off-key"See why we like to work together?

At any rate, I’m so twirly about this joint project. I’m headed out of town for the latter half of May and don’t expect to be online at all, so Grace will be handling the last-minute stuff on this. But I’ll be back for release day! 

Moar dancing! Moar warbly singing!