An Eligibility Post for the 2018 Award Season

The list is short.

Witchmark is eligible for all sorts of 2018 awards, including the Nebula, the Hugo, and the Prix Aurora Award!

(Please note that I am not eligible for the Campbell award for Best New Writer. I published a qualifying work way back in 2003.)

Thank you to everyone who loved this book. I have included a few reviews from various internet locations, in case they’re useful:

Publisher’s Weekly, Starred Review: “The final revelations are impossible to see coming and prove that Polk is a writer to watch for fans of clever, surprising period fantasy.”

Booklist, Starred Review: “Many disparate elements are expertly woven together to make this debut a crackler, with layers like a nesting doll and just as delightful to discover.”

The Best New Fantasy Novels, The New York Times: “thoroughly charming and deftly paced; I appreciated how well the world-building meshed with the plot’s development, like a map’s surface being revealed in time with one’s progress along it.”

The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy Novels of 2018, Barnes and Noble: “This bewitching story of political maneuverings, dangerous magic, sweet romance, and bicycle chases is never less than addictive.”

Witchmark is available for sale at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Books a Million, IndieBound, and Powell’s.

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Witchmark – Pre-Order Now

witcmark hi res image

C. L. Polk arrives on the scene with Witchmark, a stunning, addictive fantasy that combines intrigue, magic, betrayal, and romance.

In an original world reminiscent of Edwardian England in the shadow of a World War, cabals of noble families use their unique magical gifts to control the fates of nations, while one young man seeks only to live a life of his own.

Magic marked Miles Singer for suffering the day he was born, doomed either to be enslaved to his family’s interest or to be committed to a witches’ asylum. He went to war to escape his destiny and came home a different man, but he couldn’t leave his past behind. The war between Aeland and Laneer leaves men changed, strangers to their friends and family, but even after faking his own death and reinventing himself as a doctor at a cash-strapped veterans’ hospital, Miles can’t hide what he truly is.

When a fatally poisoned patient exposes Miles’ healing gift and his witchmark, he must put his anonymity and freedom at risk to investigate his patient’s murder. To find the truth he’ll need to rely on the family he despises, and on the kindness of the most gorgeous man he’s ever seen.

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My First Book Deal

pmwitchmark(transcribed from graphic: “C.L. Polk’s debut WITCHMARK, in which a doctor returned from a recent war has faked his death to work at a cash-strapped veteran’s hospital, but when a fatally poisoned patient exposes his secret healing powers to a witness, he must put his anonymity and freedom at risk to investigate his patient’s murder, in a two-book deal, to Carl Engle-Laird at Tor.com, by Caitlin McDonald at Donald Maass Literary Agency.”)

It’s happening. It’s real. My novel is going to be published – not just anywhere, but at my dream publisher. I’m represented by the agent I secretly wished for when I was making my agent research spreadsheet. From my first queries in February to signing the contract in December, I’ve been so lucky.

I think I wouldn’t have managed it, though, if it hadn’t been for entering a novel mentoring contest and being selected by Michelle Hazen. Her suggestions and insight into wrangling the complicated braid of all Witchmark’s plots into something more connected made all the difference. I definitely wouldn’t be here if it hadn’t been for Liz Bourke, whose kind words about my manuscript tickled the curiosity of Justin Landon, who reached out and asked to see it. We’ll be diving into a new round of edits and I cannot wait to get started.

Witchmark will probably be available from tor.com in 2018. I’ll give more detail when I know for sure.

 

My Fiction

Yeah, there’s nothing to see here. I haven’t published a book yet.

I can tell you about the novel I finished, though.

Witchmark is an 83,000 word Fantasy about an ex-army doctor who is the only one who can see that his patients who suffer from violent fantasies have an infection in their brains, and a guardian of the dead in search of souls lost from the underworld. Together, their pursuit of a journalist’s murderer leads them to the terrible answer behind each of their puzzles, and the revenge that could devastate the nation if they don’t find a way to stop it.

Not one to sit on my laurels, I’ve started another book.

Project Arcade is a contemporary romance currently in the drafting stages. Sexism and harassment won’t stop Juliet from making the video game of the year, but a secret relationship with the game’s lead actor could end her career.