Two posts in one, more or less!
Black Wolf, the novel
Wow, I can’t believe I didn’t do a post here when Black Wolf was officially released on Smashwords!!! Of course, I spent a large part of that day re-uploading it, trying to make the inexplicably cranky formatting behave itself, and I desperately hope that it’s now doing so for readers. I have to admit to walking away that evening not wanting to think about it any more for a day or two. So, belatedly:
Black Wolf is officially released, as of Hallowe’en!!! For info on how to get a copy for yourself, drop by here: http://prysmcat.com/black-wolf/
Now Yin-Yang isn’t sitting out there all by itself! And there’ll be a third sibling for them this spring, if all goes as planned – an other-world fantasy, rather than another urban one.
Moonblood, the serial
Now, finishing a novel leaves a hole, a space that’s full only of potential: what shall I work on next? The fastest way I know to sabotage myself is to choose based on what I can complete the most quickly, because I’ll lose interest in it rapidly. However, there are a few projects that were previously released here and have been removed for revision before official publication, and they do have some claim on being near the top of the list. With Lamia still in limbo (I seem to find more that I’m unhappy with every time I open the file, even though I adore the characters and it has several of my favourite scenes I’ve ever written), that pretty much leaves Moonblood.
Moonblood‘s a bit of an odd one, though. It’s not really a novel. It’s a set of characters having adventures in another world, each of which is largely complete in itself, though the first few do have an overall loose arc. Some of those adventures are fairly substantial at 20k+ words. Some are much shorter. It was intended to be open-ended, potentially able to go on indefinitely, swapping through the characters that part ways, have separate adventures, and recombine in varying combinations as time (quite a lot of time) passes. I have considered turning the part that encompasses the arc into a collection, in ebook and print-on-demand forms, and I still probably will. But… between now and then, I think I’m going to try something different.
A less serious work, this time, that was completed with record speed – but I’m still rather pleased with it. It’s the first of the Resurrection Project experiments, in fact, and I believe the first anyone has seen my Jordans family since I was in high school, or thereabouts.
Really, what is there to say?
Yin-Yang started as an odd idea that got shelved for a long time but kept creeping back, despite my certainty that it was just too strange to bother finishing because no one else would ever want to read it. The characters kept nagging at me, and I finally decided to try turning the rough material into an actual novel. I hung up on the climactic scene for over two years, coming back to it periodically and then giving up again, but this past spring at long last it came together. Several volunteer readers took the time to give me their thoughts, for which I’m deeply grateful because it’s a far stronger novel for it. Life happened, distractions happened, but… after all that… it’s done!
I hope my test readers are pleased with what I did with their comments and that their unanswered questions can now be resolved.
Meanwhile, I’m going to go be deliriously happy and also take some ibuprofen for the headache from wrestling with the epub formatting…
PS, sorry, I don’t do covers. I’m a writer, not a graphic designer.
I’m very big on diversity in writing, particularly when it comes to fantasy and science-fiction.
Our dominant, mass-media-driven culture is keen on portraying “normal” (=”good and right”) in very restrictive terms. (I’ve talked about this elsewhere.) With humanity still struggling with our tragic history of hatred and bigotry and many of us trying our best to get past that (unfortunately, far too many seem quite content to wallow in it), value judgements disguised as entertainment only undermine the slow climb towards equality.
That said… “political correctness” kills creativity.
Before you lynch me or stop reading, please understand. I’m not advocating that you portray prejudice and bigotry and hatred and all the countless “isms” as good things. In fact, our job as writers is to challenge the “isms” and show what the alternatives can be. Writing should show and celebrate the amazing and endless variety that occurs within humanity – and explore what can lie outside of that, when we’re playing with the supernatural or extra-terrestrial or otherwise non-human. Read the rest of this entry
anthropomorphize: 1. To endow with human qualities. 2. To attribute human characteristics to something that is non-human. (from wiktionary)
I live with four cats who are a fundamental daily part of my life. I know I’m guilty of anthropomorphizing them sometimes, although I make a serious effort to understand them on their own terms, and it’s more often teasing than for real.
I’m the admin of a lolcats (and other lolanimals) site, which is heavy on the sincere animal lovers, but a deliberate part of the game involves reading human facial expressions, body language, motivation, thought processes, and/or other interpretation into photos of cats (and other animals). This is, however, a game, and many of the regulars are fascinated by the realities of animals.
Assuming, of course, that one isn’t writing something deliberately playing with the idea… as a writer, anthropomorphizing animals is simply unforgivable for multiple reasons. Read the rest of this entry