OK, here's what I got at the moment:
ALL(?) ABOUT PAUL OF DUNE: A SUMMARY
Scheduled for first edition release on September 16, 2008
Contracted for in February 2004 along with The Road to Dune
with Tor Books and Hodder.
Originally outlined for 110 “chapters”, 55 by Kevin and 55 by Brian.
Target length: 150,000 words.
The “Heroes” trilogy has been in planning since 2000.
Kevin and Brian both reread House Atreides
, House Harkonnen
, House Corrino
, and Dune Messiah
in preparation for Paul of Dune
over a period of at least two months prior to March 2007. (Note that nowhere have I seen mention of them referring to the "Dune Concordance" Brian supposedly prepared.) They met in Seattle for six days (March 26-April 1, 2007) to brainstorm the Heroes trilogy and complete the detailed (chapter-by-chapter) outline for Paul of Dune
. (Evidently they started with a “skeleton outline” of 10 pp. which they later expanded into a “full-blown outline” of 100 pp.)
“The genesis of the story is based on a lot of Frank Herbert's character-history details, previously unpublished events in the early life of Paul Atreides and other characters from DUNE
. We are using these story elements to create our own cohesive novel/trilogy.” They have been writing down “ideas, plot expansions, possibilities for the story” during the period they were working on the Legends pre-prequels, The Road to Dune
, and the two sequels.
Kevin dictated the (his?) first two chapters on June 22, 2007, the last four on August 4, 2007. (That’s 44 days for the first draft of his chapters.) Brian, who we are to believe actually WRITES (instead of blabbing into a microphone and letting someone else deal with the messy detail of typing), did not finish his last chapter until a full month later on September 5.
Brian put all of the chapters together and did the first “major edit” of the manuscript while on a European cruise with wife Jan. He had finished 3/4 of the task by October 6. Draft 2 was completed by October 26 and came in at 188,000 words. They decided to “tighten up” the “Young Paul” section.
The (fourth? and) final draft was completed by February 17, 2008 and sent to their editors and test readers.
Two parts: “Young Paul Atreides”, describing the first 15 years of Paul’s life, and “Emperor Muad’Dib”, describing the 11 years between Dune and Dune Messiah (63 chs).
The book “— … in alternating storylines—will tell the story of Paul's younger years, his friendship with Duncan and Gurney, and Duke Leto's War of Assassins against Grumman; and it will also fill in the story of Muad'Dib's great Jihad, Princess Irulan's task of building the legend of Muad'Dib, and Shaddam's bid for a return to power.”
“How Duncan gets his own sword in service of House Atreides and how he uses it during the War of Assassins is a large part of the story in the forthcoming Paul of Dune
“In the opening of Dune
, Irulan’s Manual of Muad’Dib
states that Paul was born on Caladan, but in House Corrino
he's actually born on Kaitain and then christened on Caladan; it's been established repeatedly that the Bene Gesserit manipulate history and propaganda. Irulan writing the various biographies of Paul and building his legend to make him an even greater figure is another of the key storylines in Paul of Dune
.” (This and the preceding one quoted from an email from Kevin.)
"Half of the story is set in the Jihad between Dune
and Dune Messiah
, when Princess Irulan decides to become Paul’s official biographer, and she will tell the other half of the story, chronicling Paul’s younger years (between House Corrino
"Paul of Dune
is the story set between Dune
and Dune Messiah
, the great Jihad that sweeps across the galaxy in the name of Muad’Dib, and how Paul Atreides gradually changes from hero to tyrant. We have other parts of that story we plan on telling, namely Jessica of Dune
and Irulan of Dune
“...some of the chapters take place on densely forested Ecaz...”
“...the first two chapters..., starting with Paul constructing the shrine of his father's skull.”
“In Frank Herbert’s classic 1965 novel, Dune
, Paul Atreides was a heroic figure, crowned Emperor of the known universe at the end of the book. But in Dune Messiah
, the second novel of the series, Frank Herbert revealed the dark side of Paul, turning what the author called “the hero myth” on its ear. At the beginning of Dune Messiah
, the legendary author wrote that there had already been a great jihad in Paul’s name (in the 12 years between the novels), killing billions of people and wiping out planets. Some fans and editors did not understand this turnabout, so during his lifetime Frank Herbert devoted many interviews to explaining why he did it.
Now, in novel form, Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson will provide even more details, in an exciting, thought-provoking addition to the thinking-man’s science fiction series. …” (Dune News, DN.com, 12/17/07)
Of special note: The somewhat gibberish-like current product description of the book on Amazon:
Frank Herbert's Dune ended with Paul Muad’Dib in control of the planet Dune. Herbert’s next Dune book, Dune Messiah, picked up the story several years later after Paul’s armies had conquered the galaxy. But what happened between Dune and Dune Messiah? How did Paul create his empire and become the Messiah? Following in the footsteps of Frank Herbert, New York Times bestselling authors Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson are answering these questions in Paul of Dune.
The Muad’Dib’s jihad is in full swing. His warrior legions march from victory to victory. But beneath the joy of victory there are dangerous undercurrents. Paul, like nearly every great conqueror, has enemies--those who would betray him to steal the awesome power he commands. . . .
And Paul himself begins to have doubts: Is the jihad getting out of his control? Has he created anarchy? Has he been betrayed by those he loves and trusts the most? And most of all, he wonders: Am I going mad?
Paul of Dune is a novel everyone will want to read and no one will be able to forget.
(To be continued...or updated later)
"Let the dead give water to the dead. As for me, it's NO MORE FUCKING TEARS!"