Goliath Is Done!

Just in case you missed it on the Twitter machine, I finished the rewrites to Goliath, the final book in the Leviathan trilogy, last Tuesday.

This was a tricky series, requiring much more research and infinitely more art direction than anything I’ve ever done before. The fact is that each of these books took more than a year to write. They only came out a year apart because a) I started the first one a long time before it found a home at Simon & Schuster, b) and S&S have been kind enough to let me turn in this third one a bit late.

But it’s done. w00t! Time off!

And now onto your imaginary questions. (I’m in a fake dialog-y mood these days.)

So these are the “rewrites”. How much did you change?

Well, I turned in the first draft in October, the day before Cassandra Claire’s wedding and three days before my giant tour started—so, um, kind of at the last possible minute. That first draft may have been a BIT rushed. In fact, it was 3,000 words shorter than the rewrites I just turned in, mostly because the ending now has three whole new chapters. (To point out the obvious: Endings are rushed when writers don’t have enough time, because most folks write their books more or less in order.)

The first draft also had missing sections in other places, with labels like [MORE CRAZY STUFF HERE] and [FINISH DESCRIPTION AFTER KEITH DRAWS IT]. Those are all replaced with real writing now . . . I hope.

So “rewrite” means “just add more stuff”?

Well, no. That’s the most noticeable aspect of this particular rewrite, but not the most important. The most critical thing I did was to look at the character arcs (particularly the relationship between Two Very Important Characters) and make sure they were consistent, dramatic, and had their own beginning, middle, and end.

Also, there were special concerns because this is a Last Book. Like, I made sure that all the characters who have appeared across the series have at least one more shout out each, so we know where they all are at the end. I also tried to hit each of the underlying themes of the series (loyalty, duty, destiny, friendship, uncomfortable allies, mixing of technologies, the importance of truth, the importance of lies, and the badness of war) in ways that felt conclusive.

Wait. Last book? But there’s only been three! Don’t you know the secret meaning of trilogy?

Um, right. What I meant was that the three Leviathan novels are done. There’s still the Manual of Aeronautics to come. This book four, which may have a different title, will be a Spiderwick Field Guide-like large-format book of Keith’s art.

It’s going to be awesome, with big, full-color deck plans of the Leviathan, cutaways of the Stormwalker, and lovely portraits of many beasties, machines, and uniforms. Finally you will know what color everything is! There are also a few how-to diagrams, like Huxley Semaphore and sliding escapes.

It comes out in October 2012.

That’s ages away. When does Goliath come out?”

Well, it was supposed to be released October 4, 2011. But that has been changed to . . .

SEPTEMBER 13, 2011! That’s right, it’s coming out three weeks earlier!

Cool! Um, but if you were late, why is it coming out earlier?

I don’t know. I just work here.

So how long is Goliath?

It is 94,000 words, and I don’t know how many pages yet. For comparison, Leviathan was 79,000 words and Behemoth was 85,000 words. Inflation!

That means you did more pictures, right?

Well, Leviathan had 50 images, Behemoth had 55, and Goliath has 56 confirmed so far, and it should be more.

(These counts includes the end papers, spot art, and full-page art.)

Will you be spoiling some of these pieces for us?

Yup. Probably March 1 for the first one, and every first of the month after. So that’s (*counts on fingers*) seven pieces of pre-released art in all.

Plus we’ll obviously spoil the cover, which should be fairly soon. (I have seen a rough version and you haven’t. Neeners to all!)

What are you doing next?

That is the subject for another blog post. (Soon, baby, soon.)

Um, I’m out of questions.

Yeah, I’m sure you are, because you’re not even real. But if the many fine commenters on this blog have more questions about Goliath, etc., they should ask them!

Note: I probably won’t answer spoilery questions, except in cheating, non-useful ways that only drive you more insane! But feel free to ask them.

149 thoughts on “Goliath Is Done!

  1. first off i love the fact that Deryn’s name means bird and to fly. i thought it fits soooo well. i can not wait intill Goliath!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. Yay for Goliath!!
    Must we wait so loooong?
    Oh well… I hope Newkirk makes an appearance in Goliath! (is it just me or is he the iciest ever?!)
    😉 Can’t wait for the previews!!!

  3. Nope you’re not the only one wishing Newkirk would be in Goliath. Actually I’d think if Deryn didn’t end up with Alek she’d end up with Newkirk. Or am I just crazy to imagine that?;P Anyway, I’m kinda curious if Spencer or whatever-Deryn’s-brother-is-called will reappear at least for her wedding or any other event that will happen to Deryn. /:| Or does he die at some point in the war?:( I’ll be very sad if he does! (Crazy much?XP) Anywayz, I gtg now… GOLIATH 4EVER!

  4. YES!!! I only started the series and finished the 2nd book. I AM GOING CRAZY TO FIND OUT WHAT HAPPENS!!!!! GO GOLIATH!!!!!

  5. Also, Scott or Mr. Westerfeld can i call you scott? Scott are they going to make a movie or what? PLEASE MAKE A MOVIE!!!! it would be so cool. I LOVE LEVIATHAN!!!!!

  6. HUZZAH! GOLIATH’S RELEASE DATE HAS BEEN ANNOUNCED! 😀

    September is when school starts (ugh) but Goliath’s release will be the ultimate present if I get into the high school I auditioned for ^^ It’ll be enough to cheer me up about going to school in the first place (lol) Thank you Scott, for writing such an epic series! ;P

    I’m not going to ask any questions for fear you’ll answer in a way that makes me more anxious for the book’s release >.<

  7. This is my favorite series ever!(I like it even more than star wars) Now…3 weeks earlier! That makes it seem closer yet…it’s still so far.

    Make a movie out of it, but make it completely animated. Leviathan the movie, I’d see it the day it came out in my area. Or if it came out somewhere else first, I’d go watch the illegal recordings on youtube.

  8. Oh my goodness! I am so excited for Goliath.I just finished the first book Leviathan and I LOVED IT! It’s like the best book EVER (I actually think I read it in like 5 hours or less, for me it really felt like 5 minutes,it went by so fast). I havnt actually read the second book yet (sad I know) when I saw that there was a third book I got so excited but then I got really sad because even though I havent read the second book,October is still to far away for the third. Please Mr.Westerfeld could you please let us read the book earlier than October?

  9. I am so excited for Goliath.I just finished the first book Leviathan and I LOVED IT! It’s like the best book EVER (I actually think I read it in like 5 hours or less, for me it really felt like 5 minutes,it went by so fast). I havnt actually read the second book yet (sad I know) when I saw that there was a third book I got so excited but then I got really sad because even though I havnt read the second book,October is still to far away for the third. Please Mr.Westerfeld could you please let us read the book earlier than October?

  10. Yayayayayayayay. Sweeettttt!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 😀
    And the day I found Leviathan, (The librarian had just gotten like 30 new books at once) I instantly loved it, then I came home and my sister suggested I read some Scott westerfield books! XD (She has only read Uglies and had no idea what Leviathan was) Now, excuse me while I go pester my friends and drive them nuts talking about how awesomely cool Leviathan/Behemoth/Goliath is.

  11. Next year huh? tic tok tic tok tic tok tic tok tic tok tic tok tic tok tic tok tic tok tic……I CAN’T WAIT THIS LONG. I CAN HARDLY STAND IT!!!!!!!!!! MUST READ MORE! breathe, whew. I’m serious, and some people hav drug addictions, well I hav Westerfeld Leviathan addiction.
    YOU ROCK SCOTT WESTERFELD!! I WILL SPREAD THE WORD ABOUT YOUR BOOKS!!
    I found out some of my friends never even heard of these books. They are deprived and need Westerfeld nutrition STAT!! On a serious note, I think the combination of Scott Westerfeld’s writing and Kieth Thompson’s art are a huge power pack that nobody should miss. They give the five (six for us special ones 😉 ) senses a good wake up call. Look out! Soon there will be team clanker and team darwinist! Keep reading people!!

  12. YES! I cant wait for this book to come out! I actually read the LEVAITHAN in five hours and just couldnt put it down and finished the BEHEMOTH the day it arrived to my house. I’m re-reading the two books again and I’m just itching to get the next one and dive right in!

    Will you be making a movie for this series?? owo It would be sooooooooooooooooooo aweeeeeeeeeeeeeesome if you did! The art in the book was one of my favourite aspects and seeing that come to life wouldjust blow my mind!!! XP

  13. OH MY GOD I RUB YOU SO MUCH. I WAS KINDA UPSET THAT IT WAS COMING OUT IN OCTOBER AND i THOUGH SAADDD 🙁 (duh, I’m an IMPATIENT little girl :DDDD)
    I RUB YOU I RUB YOU I RUB YOU I RUB YOU <3

  14. Scott, I have been a fan since I read the first page of Leviathan (which was in December) and I had to wait until after Christmas exams to read the rest of it >:( but it was SO VERY WORTH IT. My sister had already ordered Bohemoth from the local bookstore (in the Bahamas ^.^) but had to wait because the shipment kept being delayed. When she got it I was half-way through Leviathan and as soon as I finished, I started reading Bohemoth, even though my sister was also reading it (we took turns). I completed both of those books in less than a week. And now I cannot WAIT for Goliath to come out!!!

    This is how much I love you and your books 🙂

  15. After this is done and released and all you should do a similar style of series for world war 2. I just thought it would be a good idea with a similar set of characters and such except in a different time period. Good luck with everything you may write.

  16. Well done Scott! I am in the middle of Behemoth and loving it. Barking Spiders! You have finished book 3, Wow. Loving Keith’s artwork and trying hard not to pre-reveal any image until I get to it. Love to Justine and keep in touch.
    Seeya!

  17. I do have a question. Out of all the books you have written, including this book series, which would you say you enjoyed writing the most and why?

  18. I teach, I’m chronologically “old”, but mentally right in line with my 8th graders. How scary is that. One of my students turned me onto your series. Love it. Can’t wait for book three. Just wondering how you got away with “get stuffed”….Americans (most) won’t have a clue, but your home peeps will.

  19. I teach, I’m chronologically “old”, but mentally right in line with my 8th graders. How scary is that? One of my students turned me onto your series. Love it. Can’t wait for book three. Just wondering how you got away with “get stuffed”….Americans (most) won’t have a clue, but your home peeps will.

  20. @Jan
    Yeah, I’m American, and all I understand is that it’s an insult. Any chance that your going to clue me in(please?)?

  21. Hi! Mr. Westerfeld. i must to say you that when i discovered the Uglies Series vision of life changed. I found These Series in december, the last year. To found The books in spanish, (My language) was very dificult. A friend of mine did lend me the books. Unfortunately I finished the books toosoon and my friend did back to his country.

    In Mexico i cant find your novels (that’s very unfair). I have recommended Uglies to all my friend but as i’m telling to you, its hard to get them.

    I want to read the Leviathan Series but there’s no version in spanish (I have been seeking), but the same friend that lend me Uglies, Has send me an electronic version of the first book in english. I don’t really know where he did get that, but its incredible. And i want to ask you permission to traslate it in spanis, cuz I want that more people know you, that way, if more people know ypu, it could be easier that i find your novels here in Mexico.

    Thanks so much for writting. Life sucks without writters.

    Love and admiration.

    Elena

  22. At the top of your site, it says Goliath will be coming out September 20, but in all the typing you did, it says it will be out September 13. Can you explain this confusion?

  23. OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! GOLIATH IS FINISHED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (times 1000000 more exlacmation marks!!!) CAN’T WAIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :DDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD (times 100000000) Too excited to see what happens to Alek and Deryn!! I want him to find out!

  24. OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! GOLIATH IS FINISHED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (times 1000000 more exclamation marks!!!) CAN’T WAIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :DDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD (times 100000000) Too excited to see what happens to Alek and Deryn!! I want him to find out!

  25. My only hope is that keith thompsan is doing all the illustrations.
    The guys a genius.
    But you are to Scott. 🙂

  26. Really? It comes out on Sept 13? But books stores wouldn’t be selling it until Sept 20…. :'(

  27. OMIGOSH! I had no idea that Behemoth was out until a few days ago and I just finished it tosday (I had to reread Leviathan of course!). I am soooo excited that Goliath is coming out EARLY! Its already on my calender. I am completely obsessed! I. AM. SO. EXCITED!

  28. OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!This series is the best and congrats at finishing Goliath. I cant wait to read it. P.S 3 weeks early that unheard of i thing i might die i want to read it now.

  29. Congratulations in finishing this book!, can’t wait to read it. I really want to thank you because your books have been a great inspiration for me, I’ve begun to write my own steam-punk story, (just a synopsis at the moment) but I’ve done some storyboards and character designs, I’d love to send it to you.
    Thanks again!

  30. O.M.G after i finiahed the first book leviathan i almost exploded bcuz i couldnt find behemoth anywhere ! and when i finiahed behemoth i almost cried bcuz i knew that i couldnt read the next book for months!!!!!!!!!!! is there ANY possible way you could release the first chapter????? 😮 )

  31. The first two were beyond awsome and the last one will be too. Greatness takes time so I can wait but these have really got to be turned into movies.

  32. It’s so amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Just one question?
    where is the book comming out like in which province and how much does it cost to buy?
    I would really like to know.
    I can’t wait till it comes out

  33. I first found out about ‘Leviathan’ by accident, from then I have been hooked!!!!!!!!! Keep up the great work!!!!!!! AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! etc…. by the way, have you sold the movie rights yet?
    😀
    Best trilogy ever!!!!!!!

  34. Just to think i might have never read leviathan if i hadn’t knocked over a few books from a shelf in the library by accident. I can’t even imagine that. So glad it happened! 😉

  35. Wait. You said that it’s coming out sept. 13, but the website says it’s coming out sept 20

  36. Is it possible to get it bumped up even more than you already have it? Sure, you told everyone Sept. 20, but I’m sure no one will complain if Goliath comes out earlier. I know I certainly won’t. By the way, I heard someone get confused over the British insults. I love them! Not all the British terms was I able to keep up with, but I managed to acurrately guess what most, if not each, of them were.

  37. I just finished Behemoth now (Why the wait? My funds kept getting reduced. D:) But I am syched for Goliath. So glad to see it come out earlier. 😀

  38. yess! finaly!!!!
    also,just wondering, but if its done, despite editing and rewrites, why does it take so long to come out? i just cant stand how i have read so many series but im still waiting for last book………….. I hope it does not come out as a movie though, because them alot of people dont read the books. anyways, i happy its coming out earlier

  39. What an amazing trilogy! As mentioned previously by other fans, it would be awesome if you wrote more into this world. Thinking Tamora Pierce style, maybe you could continue through other characters’ perspectives in a different stage of this brilliant world with another series. Maybe as it was first being created? Later in the future? I don’t know, but it would be exceedingly interesting to read more. Somehow you’re able to incorporate detailed elements into an off-the-charts creative universe without letting the major themes of the story escape you. That’s a rare joy to read, and it’s a shame to have it end so soon. This is just the begging of a senseless fan, so…yeah, that’s about it. Keep writing those wonderful books!

  40. thank you thank you thank you

    you don’t know how excited i am about Goliath. And, well, the only thing i hate is the fact that this series is only three books. And what if nothing happens between Deryn and Alek. But if something does happen, i hope it is at the start of the book (like, Deryn telling Alek she loves him and that she’s a girl) so it continues throughout the whole book.

    P.S Could you say a leak about what happens if they do get together, because, who know, Alek is a prince and Deryn’s a commoner. OOOOOO, now i made myself more excited, damn.

  41. this may be a little weird but you should know i finished Behemoth in one night, it was SO GOOD. Thank you for your godly writing.

  42. The best trilogy I have ever read (or atleast part of). And I read a lot. A LOT. I loved leviathan so much that as soon as I finished it I went straight to the library to get behemoth. It was so good I even introduced it to my non-reading friend. AND SHE READ IT IN ONE DAY. That’s saying something. Great job on finishing Goliath. I can’t wait that long!

  43. I only check this blog every two months and OMG! Golith is coming out a month earlier! So now I’m like freakin’ saving up my money for buying Goliath! I’m glad it’s done, but if it’s done and you have a cover, can you release it a wee bit sooner?
    Can you at least let us know about Deryn and Alek’s would be/could be relationship? Please? Pretty Please?

  44. i check this blog everyday, finished behemoth in one day, and read it 5 times. i cant wait for Goliath! I say Goliath should be released and whoever does get a copy before it’s sold out to bad. im sorry but september too far away.

Comments are closed.