Dreams

A Highway With No One On It

Well, I’m working on getting everything ready for the show in April. I have one book on the market, but I will hopefully be launching three (three!) more at the Geequinox, two of which will be the first two books of the Jenny Dark series.

This is ambitious but possible. I have an editor selected, and I have the writing mostly done. The second draft of A Long Walk is well on its way and the first draft of book two of Jenny Dark is complete. The first draft of Jenny Dark book one is more than halfway – although I did lose my place a little bit, which slowed me down. I’m back to speed on that one, I know where I left off and I’m catching up.

Anyway, the point is that I will have four books with me at the Geequinox, sitting on my table (I might have a fifth, but probably not).

I don’t know if I will sell all my books or even most of my books. I’m going to take a risk on it, dream big and hope people like my little stories.

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Research and Oddness

A body by a stove

The last few weeks have got me thinking about character development. I can’t go into the details too much, but it’s been intense and strange. I think one thing I’ve been reflecting on is how people don’t react to stress consistently. One time someone might be a rock solid person, and the other time goes to pieces (this isn’t one of those times and things are good with me, just intense).

It’s also interesting to note how not all stress is the result of bad things in life. Sometimes something really good can cause a lot of stress as well. Just because it is a cause for celebration doesn’t mean it comes without stress and panic. We tend to think of stress as being the result of negatives, but imagine getting a dream job – for most people that would involve a great deal more responsibility and hard work… there are many things like this in life, and it’s hard to know which ones they are.

I like to test my characters, to try and break them, but one of my books actually has a character come into a great deal of money, and it almost kills him. It’s not the main stressor of the book, but it’s a big one.

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A Long Hiatus

Water and Rocks

Things happened in my life. Good things, but they kept me very, very busy. I haven’t been able to write at all, something had to give, and it was writing for a little bit. Now things have calmed down a tiny bit – not a lot, just a tiny bit. Writing is coming back.

I no longer have chapters of A Long Walk to fall back on, and the rest of my stuff isn’t edited to that point. I have continuity errors still for example. So, that means I will have to write new stuff every day. Wow, that’s a lot to take on right now.

Okay, I will do it anyway.

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Afterward

If you are reading this, hopefully, you read A Long Walk. If not, the index page has all the chapters on it, or you can get it for Kindle (or in dead tree edition) on Amazon. If you want to go for the dead tree edition it will cost you money, but the other methods are free.

I wrote A Long Walk as a NaNoWriMo Project, and it was my first finished novel. Before that, I think the longest story I had ever finished was in the five thousand word range. A Long Walk was a ten-fold increase over my next longest piece. It was a bitch, and the finished product had a lot of issues. I added viewpoints and moved characters around. When I wrote it there were some major plot points I had planned to turn out differently, but the story made more sense this way.

After I finished I was going to take it easy, I was going to slowly accumulate some books, with a plan to make a living as a writer in about ten years.

Life had different plans. I ended up in a position where I had the time and resources to give this writing stuff a serious try, and I really wanted to make it happen. I’m still on that journey, trying to make the writing thing my living.

If you liked A Long Walk please join my mailing list. I send a message a week, and the occasional one when I publish a new story. There’s also a free ebook copy of Almost Like Wearing Nothing at All in it for you!

Feel free to leave a review if you liked it or not. Also, if you download the kindle version before you leave a review you get a free Kindle version and Amazon gives the review more weight by marking you as a verified purchaser. This makes me very, very happy.

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The Disaster Artist

A Path

It’s a strange thing to watch a movie where good actors play incredibly bad actors. The Disaster Artist is the story of the making of The Room.

The Room is an awful movie, entertaining, but awful. It’s hard to really explain, but it’s compelling in a very strange sort of way. The Disaster Artist is stranger. The truth is that Tommy Wiseau, the writer, director, and star of The Room is a very strange man, and nobody really knows where his money comes from. He personally bankrolled the movie The Room to the tune of six million dollars, owned an apartment in LA, and had no discernable source of income.

The Disaster Artist is fun, but it’s not the same kind of fun. It’s not mean-spirited towards Tommy, in fact, it seems to celebrate him, but it does recognise that he was not a good filmmaker. He is played by James Franco, a very, very talented actor. His best friend and co-star Greg is played by Dave Franco.

It’s so strange that it has to be real life. If I wrote a character like Tommy Wiseau, nobody would believe it. He’s far too bizarre and unexplained.

I often try to include incongruous elements in my characters, and the tale of Tommy Wiseau is a great inspiration for that.

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New Sites

I’m trying to figure out what to do for my two new sites.

I have not put anything at all on them as of yet. One is jennydark.com – currently not hosted. It’s for my series The Strange Tales of Jenny Dark.

I don’t yet know what that’s going to look like, as a website. I think I’ll probably have a lore section, with myths, legends, ideas, etc. Due to a series of conversations with my son I have a developed mythos here. Some things won’t be in my books, although most if not all will actually influence my stories more or less. Some of it is bizarre (Hell has no entropy).

I’m doing the same thing with my World of the Dead series. World of the Dead is an interesting world to me because it’s a lot longer post-zombie than most movies. Twenty years and the world is very, very different. I’m thinking the world of the dead is going to have a great deal of worldbuilding. I want people to see the world, of course only as I reveal it in the books (there are bits that will come out much later and matter to stories).

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Being Stalled on Writing

A Snowy Road

Not writer’s block. It’s not that I don’t know what to write, hell, I have like fifty novels planned out, I write scenes in my head, I have all of this storytelling in my head. The problem is something else, I find that when I sit down to write right now I’m not focusing. I can do code right now, which is cool, but I really need to get some fictions written.

Anyway, something changed last night, and all of a sudden I find I can write again today and I’m slightly resenting that today is a busy day where I have all kinds of non-writing activities I need to do. I want to bang this story out, and I want to do it fast!

So, a good feeling, and I think it might just last for a bit.

I figured out what was blocking me, and I think it’s on the path to being dealt with. Not story related at all. It’s a combination of factors. One huge one: The focus on getting up early. That’s not who I am, and it’s not my life. I’m a night owl, a writer of the classic model, and when I try to force my life into that more mainstream version, well, it doesn’t work out terribly well.

There are other factors, but that’s a huge one. The rest of the getting up and getting going things, I should still do those things, but the forcing myself to early mornings? It’s bad for me.

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I have a short story on Amazon

The Chosen Pigherder Cover

I know, I have a few. This one is even on this site. The only issue is I have edited it since I posted it, so it’s a bit different than the version on the site. Available for sale right now.

The story is The Chosen Pigherder. The basic premise is that the chosen one is actually very good at his job, and loves it. He’s a great pig farmer. It’s not so much that he resists the call to adventure as that he has actually zero interest in it. In the end, he manages to subvert the call and do something else.

I didn’t like this one very much when I wrote it, but I went back and re-read it, and it’s much more clever than I had originally thought, and on reread I quite enjoy it.

The edits help.

Now, that doesn’t mean you can’t read the version on this site, and I will update it to match, but I haven’t done the updates yet, and it will be a few days before I manage to get those changes done, because I split it up in serial form when I first wrote it… It was an experiment in live writing.

I often find that I enjoy stories more when I take a break and go back. As a reader, I find they often have things to offer me that I didn’t appreciate when I was originally creating them.

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