I have grown and failed time and time again.
There are different levels of failure and most of them are on display for everyone to see.
Back at the first NerdCon:Stories (2015), I attended a panel where Patrick Rothfuss commented that he's found with new writers, especially if their work is good, that it usually leads to breakdowns in their life, usually resulting in divorce. When he reads an exception first book, he does what he can to find that author's contact info and call them up to ask, "Hey. Are you okay?"
I never got a call like that.
However, I can't help but recognize that occurrence in my life. It's something that's stuck with me, and it's been easier to coast off that ideal in the year plus since my divorce and the release of my first book.
For the majority of the year, I have remained fairly silent. Obviously, the podcast has been ongoing, but, as a professional writer, this past year has been stagnant. I've toyed with ideas, I've started working on the ideas for the sequel to The Faithful. Despite all this time put into the ideas of the sequels, little to no writing has been put to the page.
There's a thrill, a rush, that comes when brainstorming a novel. One of my favorite things about the process is when all the thoughts you've had swirling around in your head start really taking shape, mingling with each other, and become these solid storylines that have yet to be written, but are already so visceral to you.
Not to seem maudlin or anything like that, but my last couple trips have had a weird but of nostalgia mixed with resilience.
As I noted in my past post, I'm divorced now. It was a shock: I found out there was a very real problem then two weeks later we were discussing terms of divorce, despite my protests.
It's been far too long since I've made an actual post. My last bit of any real news, other than the release of Of Gods and Madness: The Faithful, came around AWP 2015. Unfortunately, that's where everything began to spiral out of control. In the past nine months, I've gone through a divorce, sold my house, lost a host of friends, even lost my job the day before my novel came out.
Did you miss a few stops on this past week's blog tour?
Here's my wrap-up of all the places I appeared.
I'm so excited about this! We've actually got a double feature when it comes to Cover Reveals today!
World Weaver Press has announced Corvidae, a Fantasy and Horror Short Story Anthology edited by Rhonda Parrish, will be available in trade paperback and ebook Tuesday, July 7, 2015.
Internal monologues are those type of things that writers have relied upon for decades, centuries even. And, properly applied, they are effective. Most of the time, however, they are used as a stand-in for action or actual conversation.
For me, question scenes are among the biggest sins you can commit as a writer. I define a question scene as an encounter between characters where one person has a point to make and the other is there to receive it, by being a sounding board and just parroting it back to the original speaker. In other words, it's an info dump but with two characters kinda-sorta speaking.
B42ART Editing an English language document
Ex Machina is a smart, uncompromising look at Artificial Intelligence and the pitfalls that come with it. This sounds boring, but under Alex Garland's deft hand, it is anything but. The scenes come in quick succession, more interested in showing you things that outright explaining them to you. The movie lets you read into characters and their motivations, all the while giving you a taut thriller as you begin to question everything you've seen.
Zoe turns eighteen in two months—the same date Armageddon begins. Instead of going shopping or doing boring homework, Zoe must devise a killer plan ASAP, or watch everyone die.
World Weaver Press has announced Fractured Days, the highly anticipated sequel to the Shards of History by Rebecca Roland, will be available in trade paperback and ebook Tuesday, June 9, 2015.
Bunraku is one of those movies that, while it doesn't achieve all its goals, it still manages to stick with you. It's an odd movie with an interesting premise and visual flair. The aesthetic is like a papercraft city, made up of stark, contrasting colors, where guns have been destroyed and a warlord rules the city, complete with nine assassins. However, it is a glorious (and possibly unholy) union of Sin City, Afro Samurai, and Tarsem's the Fall while calling to mind spaghetti westerns and neo-noir.
After years of dedicated work and entirely too many edits, Of Gods and Madness: The Faithful has finally got a release date! Of course, I'm great at this and spoiled it in the title of this post, but damn, I'm excited. I've got proof copies now that I'm perfecting for its final release date.
Now that I've done this, I've got to face the realization that, yes, I do have to work on other novels.
I've officially launched my Patreon. As opposed to simply adding a Donate button, I wanted to give you guys a method of getting a bit more back, depending on what level of involvement you'd like in my career. While I am shooting for the moon with this, I expect it to be a slow burn, possibly taking years before I'm finally able to break away from my day job and become a full time writer. This is just a step toward that goal.
This might just be a me thing, but I definitely felt out of place at Association of Writers & Writing Programs 2015 (AWP15). This year, it's a land of resolving unlikable characters, MFAs, Lit Mags, and Chap Books. As a genre writer who has been doing this for ten years, I felt like I was the minority to which there were few reprieves.
It Follows is not your traditional horror movie. It plays with a lot of the conventions and builds on your expectations, tweaking them ever so slightly to amp up the tension. However, I honestly can say that I didn't find it scary or creepy. Nothing made me jump, though there are (thankfully) few moments where they do a simple jump scare. That being said, I've seen it twice now and can't stop thinking about it or talking to my friends and family and trying to convince them to see it with me.
This film came out of nowhere for me. I'd seen the trailers, I'd even seen Bronson, Valhalla Rising and Pusher. But, for some reason, I was not prepared for what Drive was going to give me.
Nicholas Winding Refn's Drive is about the relationship between the Driver, a Hollywood stuntman, and his neighbor, Irene. This is the heart of the movie, but, surrounding it, are mobsters, stock car racing, and blackmail. It's a beautiful movie that calls to mind Michael Mann, Tangerine Dream films. It's a languid film at times, at others tense, but always beautiful.
There are movies that you watch and they just pass by. Then there are those that sit with you and stew. That take multiple viewings to even follow the conversations, though you do understand the overarching plot of it all. Primer is one of the latter films.
Filmed on a budget of $5,000, Primer is a packed film that, while only an hour and seventeen minutes long, easily feels like a two-hour movie. I've shown this film to dozens of people. I've garnered reactions from "You didn't tell me I was going to have to think." to "I don't know what happened. But it's cool."
There are times where I question whether or not I'm a writer.
After some analysis, it's obvious I am. Recently, at PAX South, I found myself repeatedly standing in line with my manuscript draped over one arm, a set of three pens settled precariously between my mouth and hands, editing the last 100 pages of The Faithful. I'd done that multiple times, but no one asked me about (I guess not that strange) and, at some point during the conference, started having a personal crisis as to whether or not I was a "writer." Only after some reflection that I realized that of course I was, but since I wasn't writing at that point, it felt like I was living a charade.
I have an odd relationship with Terry Pratchett.
I did not come to his world through books. Instead, I came to him through the Discworld video game on Playstation 1. I loved classic point and click adventures and Rincewind the Wizard was part of this lovably strange world, complete with a walking set of luggage (that bore multitudes of teeth) and he was trying to stop a dragon. The game had many winks and nods to the books as well as to gaming conventions. For instance, you can see the dragon from the very first screen and Rincewind makes a comment about the foreboding shape.