Nymph, in thy orisons, be all my blog posts remembered

Okay, well, it’s a new week, and a new month, and this is a new blog post…as is probably obvious.  Last week I posted my author’s note for Son of Man, and next week I’m going to write an author’s note for If the Spirit Moves You, the last of the stories in Welcome to Paradox City to receive such a treatment.  I suppose that I’ll subsequently write an author’s note each for the three short stories that have followed, and that are now available in Kindle versions (only 99 cents each, and cheap at twice the price).  I did write about them each on this blog even as they took shape, but there are, nevertheless, further insights to be delivered, for those readers who are interested.

Now, though, having finished the publication of all three of my most recent short stories, I have returned to work on Unanimity.  I’ve been rereading all that I’ve written of it hitherto, just to get back into the swing of the story.  This is, nominally, against Stephen King’s advice in his excellent book On Writing, but I’m doing it only because I took a break to hone those short stories for publication, so I think this case merits an exception to the King’s recommendation.  The rereading has been enjoyable so far, and the book is better than I occasionally felt it was while writing it.  This happens to me quite a lot:  the works that feel forced and inelegant while I’m writing them turn out to be much finer than I expect, and sometimes are better than those which seem to flow more readily—even inexorably—from whatever it is that produces creativity.  This may make perfect sense.  After all, those things in nature that come forward with great speed and power are often rougher in their original shape than more gradual phenomena and require more honing in the end.  I wouldn’t imagine that this is a law of physics, but it is a phenomenon I see in my own creativity.

In addition to resuming my work on Unanimity, I’ve returned to my previous plan and begun audio recordings of my short stories.  Specifically, I recorded the first draft audio of me (!) reading I for one welcome our new computer overlords last week and am now in the process of editing it.  I’m extremely thankful for the amazing advances in technology that allow sound editing to be carried out on more or less any reasonable computer.  I won’t say that my equipment or program is absolute state of the art, but since we’re not dealing here with a musical recording, but with an author reading aloud one of his stories, it’s more than adequate.  When I think of the complex machinations the Beatles and George Martin went through to produce their ground-breaking and innovative musical effects in the sixties, my mind soars.  Just imagine what a modern equivalent of Lennon and McCartney—or of Mozart—could do with the tools available in the early twenty-first century!  As far as I can tell, though, we still await the next arrival of such era-defining genius.

In any case, thanks to that wonderful technology, it shouldn’t be long before the audio version of Ifowonco will be available, and when it is, I shall post it on this blog, free for those who wish to listen at their leisure.  Of course, being compulsive about such things, I shall no doubt follow this with audio versions of Prometheus and Chiron and Hole for a Heart, though I’m not sure how quickly that will happen.  I’ll probably eventually do audio versions for all three of the stories in Welcome to Paradox City as well.  I don’t think, however, that I’ll do so for my novels, at least not in the short term.  I’m a bit disappointed in this prediction, but the time scales are simply too daunting.  The final recording for Ifowonco—a long short story, I’ll admit—will probably be on the order of about two hours long, and production takes much, much longer.  If that length pattern holds, my novels would end up about ten times that duration, and it’s hard for me to see myself sparing the time to produce them anytime soon.  It’s really too bad, because I do enjoy reading books aloud, and I expect my skills at both performance and production to improve with practice.  Unfortunately, given the fact that I also need to work to make a living, recording time inevitably eats into my writing, and that is my first and major calling.  I have so many books to write (and short stories, too), and my time is woefully limited.  One must, it seems, prioritize, and so enterprises of great pith and moment with this regard their currents turn awry and lose the name of action.

Alas!  Poor audio.

It is with no honest regret, though, that I’ll return to Unanimity, and thence to its younger siblings, proceeding at full throttle.  Unanimity isn’t a happy story—what horror novel is?—but I’m definitely happy to write it, and will be just as happy, if not more so, for others to read it.

While you wait for that to be finished, keep your eyes peeled for my next author’s note, and keep your ears pricked up for my upcoming audio releases.  As always, I thank you for reading, I welcome your feedback, and I wish you well.

TTFN

Regarding short stories and e-books, as well as other things

Happy November, everybody.

As anyone who’s followed this blog recently knows, last week I released my latest short story, “Hole for a Heart,” just in time for Halloween.  I hope you enjoyed it, if you read it (it’s hard to imagine you enjoying it if you didn’t read it, but I suppose it takes all kinds in this world).

I apologize for the fact that I haven’t yet released the audio of my short story “Prometheus and Chiron.”  It’s simply very difficult to seize the moments to accomplish such feats, given that I work full time five or six days a week, with a nearly-two-hour commute in each direction, and of course continue writing every day as well.  This all tends to leave me rather fatigued, so on the weekends I mainly decompress (though in boring ways).  I do mean to release that audio, but it does need to be edited before I can do that, and I don’t want to rush it.  If you were to listen to it as it is now—even if I combined the separate tracks—you might be amused, but I don’t think that you’d particularly enjoy the story, and that’s obviously my hope for the process. Continue reading

“Mark Red” is now available on Kindle!

Okay, everyone, good news!  At long last, “Mark Red” – the complete novel – is available for purchase through Amazon Kindle, here.

In addition, we are currently formatting “Mark Red” for the paperback edition, which will soon be available as well.  It will probably be somewhat more expensive in paperback, but you will also have the option of buying both formats together for a discount, so keep you eyes open.  (You’ll also, in principle, be able to get it autographed by the author, so that’s something to keep in mind!)

In addition, we will soon be formatting both “Son of Man” and “Welcome to Paradox City” for paperback as well, and these too will be available for purchase, with the same deal as listed above.

Keep your eyes open.  If you like modern vampire stories, check out “Mark Red.”  And remember, 50% of royalties go to literacy charities!

TTFN

Welcome to Paradox City is now for sale on Kindle

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Hello all!  I’m sorry there’s been such a delay since my last posting.  In addition to working on writing my new novel, preparing the editing for Son of Man, and working six days a week on my “day job,” I’ve been preparing for that which I am now announcing:  Welcome to Paradox City is now available on Amazon Kindle!  This is a brief collection of three dark tales, at least one of which is verging on being a novella, while the other two are just rather long short stories.  Though they are all “dark tales,” dealing with subject matter a bit too grim for daytime TV, one is a actually somewhat lighthearted, while the other two are…fully dark.

So, preparing that publication has been one of the things that’s slowed down the posting of the monthly chapters of Mark Red and The Chasm and the Collision.  I’m also continuing to work on new material, and getting the editing of Son of Man done, and looking for a good cover design.  It’s very busy, and I’m probably going to have to scale back to releasing only alternating chapters of Mark Red and CatC per month, instead of one each.

Welcome to Paradox City is available for only $2.99 on Kindle, and of course, 50% of the royalties will go to literacy charities such as RIF, as is always the case with works by Chronic Publications.  The more readers there are in the world—and the more reading those readers do—the better off we all are.  I’m convinced that this is an absolutely true correlation.

Hopefully Son of Man will be ready for publication within the next few months.  Certainly it won’t be very long before the last chapter of Mark Red is published, though The Chasm and the Collision has quite a bit more to go.  Give me your feedback, positive and negative.  I can take it!

Above all, thank you all for reading and following my blog, be well, and keep reading.

TTFN!

Once More Unto the Breach, Dear Friends…

Once more

Okay, I’ve been putting off doing a post, because I kind of thought I wanted to have something profound to say after not having been around here for a while.  Then I decided, “What the heck? There’s no need to be so serious.”  I want to celebrate being back, and being able to post something, by actually posting something.  It’s not as though I haven’t been writing this whole time, in any case.  In fact, while I’ve been away, I’ve written two complete novels, gotten most of the way done on a third, and I also wrote a very long “short story”.

Those of you who’ve been paying attention (both of you!) will have noticed that chapters of my books have been published on Amazon for Kindle even while I’ve been away.  For this I owe thanks to my amazing and incredibly supportive sister, Liz, who showed breathtaking courage and tenacity by wading through my handwritten–often in cursive!–writing to retype it and publish it to Amazon.  But now I’ve been able to take that task off her hands.

Those of you who may not understand just what an undertaking that project was will do well to learn this:  Before I started using it, cursive was simply called “script” writing.  Only after people began to try to decipher my writing did it come to be known as “curse-ive”…and for good reason.

Okay, maybe that’s a mild exaggeration.  But it is only mild.

As for just why I have been away for such a long time…well, there will be more on that to come.  Suffice it to say that, like Gandalf, I was delayed because I was held captive.  I will be writing about that experience, about the things it has made me realize about the society in which we live, and the things which we so readily and thoughtlessly accept, which we should not, in the near future.  I’m sure you can’t wait.

There is going to be a shift in focus on this blog–one might actually say that it will be less focused going forward, in the sense that I am not going to attempt to tailor it narrowly about one particular topic or subject matter, nor even to keep it focused around narrow ranges of material.  Of course, I expect that I will continue to write about scientific and medical topics; these are two of the loves of my life, after all, and as the great Carl Sagan pointed out, when you’re in love you want to shout it to the world.  But another love of my life is writing fiction, and I am going to be discussing my ongoing fiction writing a fair amount, since it is the single most dominant fact of my life at the present moment.

I have been writing at least a thousand words a day (and usually more) at least six days a week for the past two years or so.  Thus the two and two-thirds completed novels and the seventy-five page “short story.”  I will publish the latter–called Paradox City–on Amazon as soon as it’s in shape to do so, and I am going to continue to publish serially the chapters of both Mark Red and The Chasm and the Collision as I get them in shape to do so as well.  I will begin to publish the third novel, Son of Man, the same way, as I get it ready.

I am doing this under the imprint of my own publishing company, which is called Chronic Publications, a company which I envisioned at least as far back as high school.  I am soon going to be incorporating it (as a Florida corporation), and carrying out my intention of giving half the after-tax proceeds to literacy charities.  As a writer, how could I do otherwise?  Without written language, civilization would not exist.  For anyone at all to be deprived of the joy of partaking in that fact in the modern world is unforgivable.

So that’s a little hint of the shape of things to come, at least as it pertains to this blog.  I hope to keep you entertained, perhaps to provoke some thought, and in any case, to indulge myself here.  If you like it, please share it (you don’t need to put a ring on it, though).  I really am going to try to make a difference in the world from here on in, so the more people I can reach, the better.

In the meantime, thank you for reading, if you are reading.  Well, if you aren’t you can’t experience my thanks, anyway, so I guess it goes without saying.  Trees falling in woods while no one’s listening, and all that…

TTFN:  Ta-ta-for-now!