As many of you know, I am over a year late on delivering to you a complete audiobook of#TheAsylumForWaywardVictorianGirls that some of you have in fact been so kind as to pre-order. Being late is awkward, embarrassing, and, worst of all, perfect grounds for confusion between an artist and their audience (you are all far more than an audience to me, but you know what I’m saying). Frankly, being late sucks. From the artist’s perspective, people you adore have paid for something and are excited about it. Then, they’re disappointed and angry, and you, the person who sold it to them, equally excited, feel indescribably terrible. You can offer everyone refunds, and business-ruiningly massive discounts on everything else you sell, but you know absolutely that this is not what they really want. They want what they ordered, and they want it, understandably, immediately.
I get it.
Let me tell you something that has happened to me this past year…something that has changed my world, and the future of the Asylum and its ability to change the world, one mad girl (or boy) at a time: I signed with my absolute dream literary agent, the fantastic Jenny Bent of The Bent Agency in NYC. My goal was to reformat my entire book into something that was affordable to everyone, easy to find anywhere in the world, so that I may help as many people as I possibly can through my experiences, by opening up my brain and humbly offering it to you, and through the message that what makes you different is what makes you magical (and also that rats can talk). Working with a top literary agent is the key to making this happen, and to relaunching this book, this bible of the Asylum world that we now share, in a way that I could never have dreamt of. Besides, and let’s have a teacup of “honesty time” here, if the new Asylum becomes an internationally best-selling novel, not only can we enact more change for good, but the Asylum Musical takes over Broadway faster, the Asylum Movie takes over theatres faster, and YOU are all dressed up as rats/inmates in said movie, you guessed it, faster.
Sounds great, right?
Hell yes it does! Unless you happen to have ordered an#AsylumAudiobook over a year ago.
You see, immediately after the audiobook went on sale, I agreed to join the Vans Warped Tour, 2014. This delayed the finishing of recording, editing, and manufacturing of the audiobook a few months, but you were very nice about it (thanks!!!). After all, a lot of you came to see us on this tour as we presented #TheAsylumExperience for the first time, and, let’s be real, it was pretty fucking badass.
Then, after the tour was over, and with corsets just barely dry from show sweat, #AlleluiaTDC Alleluia: The Devil’s Carnival finally went into production, and not only was I handed a script that pretty much put me in a lead role in a feature film, I’m to play a DUAL lead role, and record new music for the film. In German. GERMAN. This delayed the finishing of recording, editing, and manufacturing of the audiobook a few MORE months, but you were nice about it, more or less (thanks!!!). After all, a lot of you came to see the film, and hung out with me on the road show tour for the film, seemed to enjoy the film, and were very kind and gracious indeed.
Finally, this last year, I signed with a literary agent with the aforementioned intention of re-formatting my book for wider publication, and I have a choice to make. I had basically rewritten my book, taking the opportunity (because the Asylum is living and breathing and never stops growing and never ever ends) to make it even more magical and beautiful and empowering, introduce you to a mind-blowing new character, and add some chapters that will virtually change everything (and I do mean absolutely EVERYTHING, I cannot express this with enough force to even closely convey what I’m talking about here). So, which version do I give to you, the early purchaser of the Asylum Audiobook? Do I finish what I started and get the nearly finished recording out to you as fast as I can and give you exactly what you are expecting? Or do I basically take more time and give you the ultimate, the “oh my god what the hell just happened I had no idea this is so much more than I ever even thought I was paying for seriously though what the hell just happened did you ever see that coming the world is shattering around me and I fucking love it” version? In short, the version containing all of the new things that nobody has ever read before or will see in print for quite a while yet (because publishers take a bit of time when putting out a new book I’m told)? What the hell do I do? No, really, what the bloody hell do I do? What would you want most? I had to make a choice. I had to take a chance. And I had to hope to the heavens that I was right. Knowing you as well as I do by now, I’m pretty sure I am.
So, I took the time. I took the time, and I recorded you the new story. The story no one but you will know. I took the time, knowing that you wouldn’t understand why because I couldn’t tell you yet, knowing that a handful of you were already feeling frustrated and let down, and with the knowledge of this eating away at me day and night with every extra day later the audiobook was equating to one year lost off of my life, which the poor people around me can attest to, and which poor @MarcSenter has had to deal with all of this time, may all the goddesses bless him. I took the time, I recorded your new version, and I hoped that I was right to do so.
Now, finally allowed to tell you about this last and most important element of our delay, and only a few short weeks of editing away from sending the audiobook out for manufacture, I am experiencing the first trembles of excitement at what your ratty ears are going to hear when you push play, and I want to share my trembles of excitement with you. I want my trembles to be your trembles. Let’s share trembles.
To anyone who has requested a refund for their purchase, I completely understand and support you. I might have done the same. For anyone keeping their order but disappointed, or angry at the delay, I apologize and strongly suggest that you request a refund instead as I don’t wish for anyone to remain in a state of dissatisfaction for any period of time whatsoever. It’s just a recording, and not worth a bit of that.
Contrary to what many might suspect, pre-orders are not done primarily to take people’s money for something that hasn’t yet been made. Rather, pre-orders are done so that a company knows how many of a product to manufacture (and how many disc sets I should sign with my beautiful silver sharpie), because, simply asking “who wants one?” and manufacturing that product based off all of the people that are going to say “me” and then not purchase the product once it’s available can be disastrous to a small business, which mine most definitely is, consisting of exactly one person with zero external funding or support (me). So, if you’re still feeling let down by the delay, you do the right thing for you, be the master of your own destiny, and ask for your order to be canceled. There is still enough time for me to take that order off of my manufacturing numbers, so, in all sincerity, it’s ok. It really is.
For those of you who are on this journey with me to it’s most beautiful completion, I give you my heart, my time, and all that is the best in me. Thank you.
But why just say “thank you” when you can sing it, right?
That’s exactly what I thought.
Which is why we are preparing the ultimate Muffin Meetup here in Los Angeles within the next two months, featuring sing-alongs with me and special guests, tea and cake, and a preview of THREE newly recorded and never-before-heard songs from the #AsylumMusical (one of which happens to be Madame Mournington’s epic ballad). Keep close for details soon to come on date and location!
Now, I’m going to go and meticulously edit the new audiobook chapter where Veronica sings and then Dr. Stockill comes up behind her and…oh wait, nobody knows that part yet. But you will. Soon.