This week marks the release of Christabel, my gothic lesbian romance originally written under the pen name Laura Adams. To answer the most frequent question, yes, this edition is significantly augmented, and runs about a quarter longer than the original. I also took the opportunity to tweak some of the original text, a process I wrote humorously about last week at K.G. MacGregor’s blog.
I rarely have any impulse to revisit an old novel and make changes. Christabel wasn’t an incomplete story, by any means; I’ve always been proud of the narrative voice, the historical research and the simple but compelling story it tells, based on Coleridge’s epic poem turned upside-down.
When my publisher told me she wanted to bring it back into print under my Karin Kallmaker nom de plume, I reviewed it and found a few old notes for scenes I hadn’t ended up using. In 1998, under a different name, I hadn’t been certain readers were up for a gothic tale, and had erred on the side of brevity. It felt really good to finish some of those ideas and deepen the present day love story. (Therefore, if you have a choice of editions to purchase, look for the second edition.)
By the end of the year, my first novel penned as Laura Adams, Night Vision, will also return to print. I’ve just finished a cosmetic edit and updating of some of the technology referenced in the science-fiction romance story, but it is substantially the same novel as published in 1997.
I have to admit that a novel I wrote twelve years ago wasn’t crystal-clear in my mind, and it was fun to rediscover it, and remember that more than one critic mentioned its highly erotic love scenes. I’d forgotten I’d written an orgy with only two people in the room. There are things one can do in science-fiction that just don’t work in any other genre.