In which I finally stop being so secretive about my WIP

You know that WIP I’ve been mysteriously alluding to for the past several months? Well, now it’s completely done, revised, edited, and about to enter the submission world, so I guess it’s finally time to stop holding it so close to my chest. So here it is.


All sixteen-year-old Amanda has ever wanted is closure—to finally know what happened to her dad. Unfortunately, that information is hidden behind layers of classified documents, so when a slot in a top-secret government training school opens up, Amanda jumps at it. She’ll keep her nose down, study hard, join the CIA, and earn the clearance codes she needs.

But then Amanda is plucked out of school before graduation, rechristened with the name Iris, and dropped into an organization she’s never heard of: the Annum Guard. It’s a team of highly trained operatives who have the ability to travel back in time and tweak the past to improve the present. Enhancement, not alteration—or so they claim. But the deeper she gets into the organization, the more she learns that the Annum Guard is keeping some very dangerous secrets. Secrets like why the Guard has always been made up of seven members and she’s number eight.

So now, on top of having to jump back in time for her missions—missions she’s questioning more and more, and missions that wreak havoc on her body (humans weren’t meant to time travel, after all)—she has to start digging for answers without getting caught.

Because if she doesn’t—if she leaves the Annum Guard to its own devices—it won’t just be her life on the line. It’ll be an entire history’s worth of lives.

Some facts about this book:

  • I had to write it three times before I got it right. The first draft was 70,000 words. The current draft clocks in a few words shy of 100,000.
  • It’s had three titles. First was IRIS WAS A PUPIL, then came THE ANNUM GUARD and now we’ve settled on THE EIGHTH GUARDIAN.
  • I spent waaaaaaay more time trying to puzzle through quantum physics and time travel theories than I needed to.
  • I am more in love with this book than anything I’ve ever written.
  • I still can’t type “EIGHTH” correctly on the first try.

Some pictures that remind me of the book:

Fingers crossed THE EIGHTH GUARDIAN finds the right home, but if it doesn’t for whatever reason, at the end of the day I have a book I’m damn proud of. And that totally counts for a lot of somethings.

Now you tell me, what are you working on these days?

Posted in Writing Tagged

23 Responses

  1. Laura Hughes says:

    Meredith, the description of your book gave me chills!!!!! It sounds sooooo awesome, and like something that will get picked up really fast! I am also working on a time travel with a secret-goverment-agent aspect (story of my life for two years, haha), but in a totally different direction/tone. I’m on my fourth re-write and I’m so happy to hear that you also spent waayyyyy too much time trying to decipher quantum physics and time travel paradoxes. My fingers are crossed for you. Good luck!

    • Meredith says:

      Thanks!! I’m pretty excited about it too. 🙂 And YAAAAY for time travel-with-secret-government-operatives books! My fingers are crossed that the fourth time is the charm is for you. If it’s any consolation, it took me a while to realize the actual science of it wasn’t THAT important, at least to my story. A small overview, yes, but the details and mechanics themselves were unimportant. If you haven’t read it yet, the only book that even sort of made sense to me was TIME TRAVEL IN EINSTEIN’S UNIVERSE. It really helped explain things in a common sense way.

  2. Holly says:

    Ah, Meredith, this sounds AMAZING!! I’m keeping my fingers crossed for you! 🙂

  3. Wow, it sounds awesome! I totally want to read it so I hope it finds a home soon!

  4. Ooh, I really like the sound of your query/blurb, and I definitely like the current title the best since it raises all kinds of questions (what are they guarding, why eight?). Good luck with the submission process!

    • Meredith says:

      Thanks, Sophia! The title took LOTS of trial and error to get right. I think my poor critique group is so sick of my “Wait, what about this one?” emails. Although in the end, it was one of my CPs who hit on the title anyway, so I guess it was worth it.

  5. Jason Carr says:

    I want to read it. Congrats I am proud of you!!

  6. AJS says:

    Um this sounds AWESOME. And I can’t wait to read it. And I better get an advance copy 🙂
    I love you and am SO SO SO SO PROUD OF YOU.

  7. Karen Strong says:

    Girl, you had me a “quantum physics”. Ha, ha. It does sounds intriguing, and I love a girl who is trying to put the pieces together and time travel — oooh, love the concept. I TOTALLY feel you on the rewriting. My current novel is about fate vs. free will so yeah, logistics and logic. Brain hurting for real.

    Keep us posted! 🙂

    • Meredith says:

      LOL. I don’t know how many people who will say that about quantum physics. And ouch, my brain is hurting just reading that description. But it sounds super awesome and intriguing, so best of luck on the revision!

  8. Oh my goodness! It sounds amazing– I love smart girls who publish cool stories! Can’t wait to hear how this goes. :0)
    Oh, and trying the bread again today… including allowing it to rise this time. It tasted fine before, but I bet it will look better this time. :0)

    • Meredith says:

      This is like the nicest thing anyone’s ever said to me. Thanks, Kat! 🙂

      And I hope the bread turns out a little better this time. I still can’t believe I left step 1 off of the recipe. Le sigh.

  9. Meredith, this sounds incredible! If I’d read that synopsis in a bookstore, I would have snatched that book right up. Good luck with submissions!

  10. Susan says:

    HUZZAH!!!! I love this book. LOOOOOVE THIS BOOK. I can fangirl over it until I’m cross-eyed and red in the face–it is THAT GOOD.

    Phew. Okay. I had to get that out of my system. What am I working on these days? ADS&L revisions and SCREECHERS. Blergh…nothing fun.

    • Meredith says:

      Eeeee!! Thank you, Sooz! That’s pretty awesome to hear too. 😉

      Here’s hoping you finish up the ADS&L revisions and get SCREECHERS under control soon so you can move on to the fun parts. 🙂

  11. Meredith, this sounds so freaking fantastic!!!!!

  12. Kathy Gout says:

    It sounds like a compelling story and absolutely perfect for the little girl who used to be Wonder Woman and saved who knows how many unknowns (along with her sister, baby brother, family, and aunts) from peril and certain destruction. I love the time travel motif that allows you to choose time/place, complete the mission, then return. It will be interesting to see the way in which time travel wrecks havoc on we frail humans…poor Amanda. I also look forward to the building mystery as the story unfolds.
    Congratulations, dear Meredith, on your accomplishment. I can’t wait to read it. I know it will be wonderful. Love from Aunt Kathy

  13. Lisa says:

    Your book is out, but I haven’t read it yet. I just bought it from Amazon’s daily special and checked out your web site to c when the next bk was coming out. I just started the 2nd bk in another awesome series that I’m reading and wanted to let u know that based on the AWESOME reviews of ur bk, im going to stop my current bk and start yours 🙂
    I just wanted u to know that because I’m sure this is like giving up ur baby to the first day of school, and not wanting the other kids to pick on or be mean to her:)
    Good luck to u, although it doesn’t seem like ur going to need it. Can’t wait to start reading!

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