What a long strange trip it’s been (Final Part)

So this is the wrap up of my little history of how I got from where I was to where I am now. From now on out it is simply looking to the future. So here I was with my story about a worn out, tired and emotionally exhausted man who has made many bad choices in his life who now finds himself the father of an 11 year-old boy. And more the place that he took that boy. The village in the wood where magic still existed and the old way of life.
I started to back track and figure out who the people in the village were, the founder, the teacher, the blacksmith and his nephew. And then I asked myself who is the founder, how does his story begin, and that is where I found Arthur Burke and the story of his life. The story which is the first book in the Sceal Casia, The Lost Prophet.
When I approached writing the overall plot the first time I treated it as if it were a short story and wrote what has become my initial outline. I broke that outline up into four parts and started the outlines for the individual stories that would make up the books. I went from a page and a half outline to five, not four, two to two and a half page outlines for the five novels.
I had finished the first two outlines, and we finally made the move from Maine to the sunny skies of Florida, and as I progressed further in I realized that I had way to much time and information back loaded in the story towards the last book that I would have a tough time cramming it all in. I then realized that I had an obvious break in the story that I could move from one book to another.
Once I finished the outlines for the individual novels I looked at what I had written and realized that the story that I was trying to tell was a generational one, about the experiences of four individuals as they try to make their way in life and deal with the relationships with their fathers. How this has effected each of them. All but one has been raised with out a mother and each has a father or father figure in their life that will try to raise them properly and at the same time deal with the mystic forces that are pulling them all to a greater destiny that will decide the fate of the twenty-first century.
So in the Fall of 2011 having just changed jobs and finding myself with significantly more free time I finally got down to the real work. No more planning or dreaming I began writing the Lost Prophet.  The full draft took me from Sept 13th 2011 until April 8th 2012. First draft complete and sent off to beta readers.
That brings the story full circle to when the blog began. Now my goals included editing, I have completed the first five chapters of the second draft, type setting, and cover design. And just generally spreading the word about the book. I originally announced that my planned release date was going to be Feb 1st, and I did an entire post about stressing over that. I now know that it will be impossible for me to have everything ready by then, especially since I have been taking a break from working on it to do other writing. So for now the date for release is TBA 2013.

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What a long strange trip it’s been (part 9)

When I started this blog one of the main things I wanted to do was tell my story, about going from a young
inexperienced man with aspiration of writing to where I am now,and how I and my writing have changed over the years to reach the spot that we are at now. So I have just looked back over the posts that I have made and I realized I have not updated the back-story in over a month and a half. So now it is time to pick up back up. I am approaching the end of this part of the blog because this week we will reach the point that I begin to write the outline for the novel that I am currently working on.  Next week I will go through some of the things between the beginning of the work on the novel and the start of the blog. That will put us into the last week in Oct. and I will probably spend that going over my last-minute plans for NaNoWriMo.
So last we left off I had gotten married and done some writing with my wife. It was probably the best writing that I have ever done and I was inspired to pick things up again, but my life seemed against me, soon after we got married we bought a condo and moved to Salem, MA. Being newly wed and raising a child (our son was 8 when we married) starting a career and spending time with friends all seemed to take the time away from getting to work writing. None of those things are a good excuse, and I fully know that I could have controlled any of those things and gotten to work writing much sooner, but I didn’t.
After four years in Salem my wife and I were ready for a change, we wanted to move to Florida and spend some time in the sun. We made plans for a place to stay while we found work and both my wife and I gave notice at our jobs. It was the day after I gave my two weeks notice that we discovered that the place that we were supposed to stay at in FL was being foreclosed on, and our friend who was renting the place and going to let us stay there had thirty days to find his own place to live. We sat down and discussed our options, we could not go South and we could not stay where we were, so the only option left was to head North. We contacted my mother-in-law and she offered to let us stay at the vacation house she owned in the beautiful town of York Beach, ME.
If you have never spent time on the lovely Maine seacoast I have to describe it for you, York Beach is the perfect summer vacation town, with a small beach with an arcade right on the edge of it, a candy store that has a taffy pulling machine in the window, a strip of gift shops and stores that cater to the summer vacation crowd with a couple of small restaurants. And at the other end of the strip an amusement park and zoo. Now for those of you from anywhere else in the world let me explain the small drawback, all of the businesses in York Beach either cater to vacations or vacationers, Summer vacationers. In a climate where summer lasts from early June through the first week in Sept summer is very short. The Fall in York beach is dead quiet and everything shuts down for Winter and does not reopen until late the following Spring. Living in a town like York Beach in Winter is purgatory. Long nights and dreary conditions with no sun for days. And worse of all in a house that was designed to be lived in for three months out of the year heating is not the first thought.
In conditions like this, when the outside temperature is below twenty-five degrees Fahrenheit and the inside temperature is just below sixty degrees Fahrenheit, one of the best was to bring your internal body temperature back up to ninety-eight degrees is to first thing in the morning jump into a scalding hot shower. Many days I would just stand in the small shower and let the cold and exhaustion drain out of my body.
And I would picture a man standing in a shower, feeling that same cold draining away, a bad man who would suddenly find that even with all of the choices that he had made in his life to avoid it, he was the father of a child. A young child who he would need to teach things to because there was more to this man than meets the eye. He would take the boy to an ancient village in the woods and meet with an elder who was even more ancient that the village and they would teach the boy secrets of their kind. This story built in me and I began to flesh out the character and who they were. Working back in time to figure out how they got to where they were from and forward to where they were going. And this was all before I even set one word down to paper.

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Your moment of truth is the day that you say “I’m not scared”

So this is going to be connected to my last post, my neurotic rant, a little bit. I have been a little stressed about the solitary aspect of writing and how it does not feed my need for connections with others.  That being said I also have another influence that has been rolling around in my head for the last couple of day. Another blog that I read, Xenogirl, talked about judging your own work not based on how old you are, but how long you have been writing fiction. Now if anyone has been reading my blog from the beginning they will be aware of the fact that while I have been writing fiction since my early twenties, I had a large section of time in my late twenties and early thirties that I was not writing on a regular basis.

I realize that I am too hard on myself a lot of the time and I expect more from myself than I am able to deliver at this point in my life. Does that mean I should stop trying or reaching for the stars. No, but it does mean that I should cut myself a little slack and remember why I love to write and the fun of it. I know that as long as I keep pushing forward and refining my skills as a writer them I will reach my goals in time. Maybe not tomorrow or the day after but I will reach my goal because I will accept no other outcome.

This brings me to my latest decision and the subject of this post. After telling myself that I am already overloading myself and that I don’t have the time to do it, I decided that I am going to give NaNoWriMo a try.

Those of you who are not aware are probably sitting there saying “He is doing what?” NaNoWriMo is short for National Novel Writing Month. It is every year during the month of November. Participants are challenged to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. This requires averaging 1,667 words a day everyday for the entire month. No editing, no changing just writing a novel in 30 days. So now I am going to be editing ‘Lost Prophet’ (second draft is half done), starting up a web-magazine, starting a new full-time job in the next couple of weeks and I am writing a third novel.

I am hoping that by putting no constraints on this new novel I will be able to recapture the love of writing. I am going to try and channel my goofy and silly side, and hopefully find something that reflects the qualities of Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams.  I have decided on the Title of Adventures of Eunice, the main character is going to be Eunice a hapless looser who falls in and out of trouble. I am not doing any outline or character developement before Nov, but I know a lot of planning will be rolling around in my head.

So feel free to follow along, I will probably be doing updates on here, but I can be found on the site here. And as for the status of Trilith I have posted the second part of the Fey Fyre series. Please any comments are greatly appreciated and if anyone wants to follow-up and ask how I am doing on the word count please let me know.

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A little bit of a rant

I have been having a rough couple of days lately. I have always felt that being a writer was one of the most solitary things that you could do, alone with a pad, typewriter or computer very little interaction. Once you are done people look at your work and they say nice things, but writing in general is taken for granted. You may hear someone talk about his or her friend who sings great or plays a musical instrument well, they could be impressed by an actress or painter or even a photographer, but rarely do you hear someone brag about a friend who is a great writer.

It is even worse as an independently published writer with no following to speak of. You are there with your work and some days it feels as if no one is listening. No one gets excited about your work. Society has convinced itself that anyone can write, since a typed manuscript by one person looks exactly like one by someone else. The latest celebrity book comes out almost as fast as reality TV shows, lack of plot is not a problem, no one expects them anymore.

When you are excited about something, you hope the whole world will get excited with you, some people do and some don’t, if you are lucky the people who you are closest to will support you even if they do not see what you are excited about. But it can be tough to keep going with that excitement as others wander off to find the next shiny thing.

I am not trying to put anybody down, I just had to get some stuff off my chest. I have just been having a rough couple of days.

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The Official Announcement

Someone once said that the greatest thing about being a Geek is the ability to unashamedly express excitement for the things you love. Whether it is Science Fiction, Horror, Comics, Anime, or any combination of them. A Geek revels in those things and longs to share that passion with the world. Be it through writing, music, poetry, art or performance art the passions in a Geeks soul cannot be denied.

I am building a place where those passions can come together, where Geeks of all sorts can Dress up, dance, sing, draw and tell stories to one another and the world. Trilith is a multi-media web-magazine that captures the things that inspire Geeks and the things Geeks aspire to.

This is truly a project in the works and I would like as many people to follow along as possible, I have already begun recruiting my team and once all of the technical issues are addressed a campaign to raise funding will begin.

As for now I will be posting samples of some of the content that I plan to use both on the facebook page and the blog.

“A soul aflame burns brighter than a million stars.” – Percival Bac.

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A little bit of course correction….

Today is going to be different from anything else I have done before, why you ask. Because prior to today everything has been centered around the progress I have been making towards the publication of ‘The Lost Prophet’ and while I am still working on that I have undergone a little course correction this week and I think a little details are in order. For those who are not aware I was laid off from my day job back in May of this year, and while I have been looking for work I have also been devoting time to making progress with getting my book ready for publication.  However I have run into a little snag in that I am almost done with the second draft of the book, not sure if I want to go ahead with feedback from friends or hiring a professional editor, at the same time I am thinking about the costs of design and cover work on the book. All of which I have no money to spare for at the moment.

At the same time as all of this has been going on, an idea that I originally came up with about a year ago was tapping at the back of my head. When I read a blog post about software that could be used to organize your writing, I decided to give it a try. I was not significantly impressed with it to give a ringing endorsement, but since I needed a project that I had not done much work on to try it out with, I figured let me work on this story. Well the software was abandoned, but I have been building the story more and more. I plan at this point to write it out as a serial, with each installment building more and more on the story. Not sure how big it will get in the end but I think I will let the story decide where it wants to go.

Now I was faced with the problem that I needed a place to publish my story, and I imagined the perfect place would be a literary magazine that focused on Geek culture. But to the best of my knowledge no one does that sort of magazine and the more that I thought about it the more it came into focus.

A multimedia e-magazine that focused on geek culture, specifically cosplay and the movie, music, art and poetry that  inspire it and are inspired by it. A place where fantasy and reality mix and mingle.

And I said to myself if no one else has made a magazine like this, then I need to be the person to do it.

As of now I have already begun assembling my creative team and drawing up plans and specification for what we can do right now with this format, and how we can make it like nothing that has ever been seen before.

Trilith – a prehistoric structure consisting of two upright stones supporting a horizontal stone. An archway or portal to somewhere else.

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Cant remember what was said or what you threw at me

Well that was interesting.  I simply made a few comments regarding the lack of connection with readers in my last blog and all of a sudden I have my most active day ever, followed by my third most active day ever. People actually went back and took a look at some of my older post and listened to what I had to say.  On the negative side I did not get the amount of questions and comments that I would have liked.  I do feel that since this experience is a journey for me, and not just some expert lecturing on a subject, then all feedback that I receive from those who are reading this can only help me.
Based on that then I need to get more feedback from the people who read my blog. I have been working on this blog for several months, I have been writing about my past, my inspirations, about the things that I have done in order to get my book ready to publication. I have asked you all to follow along on my journey as a writer and an artist.  But with the exception of one story that I created the characters and plot for twenty years ago, and was scripted by my wife ten years ago I have given you folks nothing to earn the support that you have given me as I make my way as a writer.
So I realized that I should also start posting along with the other things that I have been putting up a selection of the things that I am working on now.  Short stories that I am writing currently some could become chapters of novels, or parts of series, some will be story-lines that I am writing to develop as independent films, but It will be a selection of shorter works of mine. What I need from people is to determine if I should make them part of my regular posts, or if my fiction work should be listed under a separate page.  And is anyone even interested in reading some of my work.  Please let me know what you think and give me some feedback.

P.S. just to let people know once I work this out I have a first draft of a story that I plan to post.

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There’s no reason to worry, There’s no reason to doubt

So I am going to take another detour today and try something different than I had originally planned with this blog.  Last week I had posted a story that was written by my wife and myself early on in our relationship.  I had some feedback that was positive, but I also noticed cases where people were liking the post, but no one had clicked on it to read it.  Now either this mean that there is a problem with WordPress’ software or people are liking post with out actually reading them.  I wasn’t sure what to do about that, then later in the week I came across a post in regards to people liking blogs just so that the writer of the blog will feel the obligation to like their posts back.  In essence a giant echo chamber where people are liking each other out of obligation and not due to the quality of the work.

So what does this mean in regards to what I want to do different with my blog this week.  I am going to turn it over to the people reading.  In the comments section below please feel free to ask any questions, about me, my work, any of my previous blogs.  If you have something that you would like for me to discuss in a future blog please let me know.  I know that odds are I will got few if any responces, but I need to feel like I am connecting with even one or two real people.

So please ask away…

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Acceptance (Part Four) by Christine & Bruce Ellis

Pressing down on his shoulders, she coaxed him silently onto the black satin sheets that covered her bed. “You are so handsome,” she continued. “So strong, so masculine” she purred. He reached up to her naked form, and pulled her into a deep longing kiss. She mounted him, and moved her body against his, rubbing slowly, feeling his hardness against her. “Kiss me lover, kiss me again” she seduced. His lips covered hers, and he reached out to cup her breasts. “You are so handsome, so strong” she whispered.

He heard the lies part her lips, and wanted to believe them, but he could not bring himself to do so. He was a loathsome creature whose only flesh and blood died at birth. His eyes locked upon the money on the bureau, and realized what he was doing. He was filled with hatred and rage. “It’s your fault!” He screamed. “All your fault! You seduced me! You whore!” He pushed her off of him violently and grabbed his clothes.

“I took you back here out of the goodness of my heart! I didn’t bring you here to fuck you! You were the one who wanted it!” She screamed out. “You were the one who needed a friend, not me!” She said as he dressed. She stood beside him and put her hand on his shoulder. He knocked her onto the bed, and finished dressing, then slammed the door on the way out.

Within an instant he was storming down the stairs to the fresh morning air. The city lights were no longer needed as the night had already passed by. Cars were slowly passing, rushing along to start their days. “That bitch” he uttered softly. “I can’t believe I thought she wanted to help. She tricked me! That bitch!”

He walked along the streets, filled with rage as he looked for his car, wishing that he had paid more attention to where that slut was leading him.

After what felt like forever, he had given up hope after he found himself walking in circles, then sat down on a curb to wallow in self-pity.

He rested his head in his hands and shook his head, recalling not only the evenings events, but also his wife; how she stuck by him in all of his needful times, how she slept, how she cooked, how she would hold him in her arms late at night when he was stressed, taking it all from him, being strong when he could not be. It was in that moment, that he realized his love for her, and that having a child would have only been another delightful thing to add to their time together. That wasn’t important though. He realized that no matter what will ever happen, that she would be there for him, to hold him, to love him, to cherish him.

He Cried.

He cried not only because he had betrayed her, but also because he was too busy blaming her for losing the child, His child, that he lost focus of what was truly important in his life… Her.

He looked up a moment later, and his car was there, across the street where he had left it. He had been so blinded by his anger that he had passed by it too many times to count.

It was a long ride home, perhaps the longest journey he had ever taken.

He pulled up in front of the house, and breathed a sigh of relief. He was finally there.

Quickly, he walked up the front steps of the house, slid his key in the door, and turned the knob slowly.  He entered quietly, and called his wife’s name softly. “Karen?” he uttered over and over, through each room of the house. He ran upstairs, and for the first time, passed by the baby’s room without a second thought.

He reached the bedroom, and there she was sleeping, oblivious to all that had happened. He sat down on the bed beside her, and whispered to her “Karen, I love you. I really love you.” She opened her eyes, and smiled at him softly. He was so happy to see her. He caressed her face and kissed her lips.

“I can’t tell you what happened tonight, but I’m sorry, I’m truly sorry.” He breathed deeply, and looked down to her. “I have never stopped loving you, and I never will. You are the light in my darkness, you are the song in my heart, and you are the stars in my heaven.” He continued as he caressed her gentle face.

“I realize I have only been thinking of myself, my needs, my wants, my desires and I never stopped to think how you must feel. For that, I am truly sorry. We’ll have a child if you still wish it, but I want you to know, that it’s you who is important to me. It is you who have made my life complete, and it is you who has been there for me through all the times that I have needed you. You never turned your back on me, for that, I am grateful. I love you with all my heart.” He sobbed.

Just then, she reached her hand up to his lips, as if to shush him. “I know dear, I know. Now come, rest with me.” She pulled him down to lie beside her, and held him tightly in her arms, making all of his fears disappear.

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Acceptance (Part Three) by Christine & Bruce Ellis

They arrived at the top floor finally, and he gazed at his surroundings. There was a window there, broken, and shards of glass lay by the stairs. A black and white cat, curled up into a ball was sleeping soundly on a newspaper in the corner, apparently off duty as he noted the rats scurrying on the staircase. The jingling of keys startled the cat as she opened the door to her apartment, and it scuttled down the stairs out of sight.

She entered the apartment, and motioned for him to enter. A sweet aroma beckoned him in. The scent of incense was plentiful, and despite the musky smell in the corridor, her apartment was not affected in the slightest. She motioned for him to sit on the couch, and as before, he obeyed. She slipped off her heels by the door, displaying her dainty feet wrapped so neatly in the skin toned nylons she wore.

It was a small cozy apartment. The living room and kitchen area were combined to make it appear larger than it was. The couch was tan, several years old, but very comfortable. He sank into it as he rested against the backing. “Do you mind if I change into something more comfortable?” she asked. “No, no, go ahead.” He nodded, and she slipped into the other room to change. “So how long have you lived here?” he asked loud enough for her to hear. “Ahh, only a few months,” she bellowed, “I go to the university here, and work at night to make a living. It’s a long story, I don’t like to talk about it much.”

“I see.” he stated, as he looked towards the sound of her voice.  He could see her naked form in the mirror as she changed out of her clothes. He watched her for several moments, as his erection stiffened.

He watched her take off her bra and panties then stand naked before the mirror to gaze upon her luxurious body. Her hands caressed her thighs, her stomach, and then finally her breasts.

In his mind he could see himself touching her, caressing her, fucking her. He shook his head violently to erase his thoughts, and feelings as if he had intruded on her enough; he cleared his throat, readjusted himself, and searched earnestly for something else to occupy his thoughts.

He sat up stiffly, and studied the adornments on the wall. There were no pictures, nothing at all that would tell of her friends, her family, or even her acquaintances. The furniture was sparse; there was only a couch, chair, and a coffee table in the room.

She slipped out of the bedroom wearing a dark blue silk robe that barely covered her essence. The muscles in her thighs were defined as she walked across the room. He stared at her form in awe. “I don’t even know your name.” She said casually, as she bent over exposing herself to him.  She opened the cabinet to find a bottle of scotch.

“Robert” He stammered. “Robert Harris. And yours?”

“Rachel” she said in a soothing tone. She chuckled softly and continued to retrieve drinks for the two. She stood, took two glasses from the strainer, and began to pour the scotch. “So what brings you around this neck of the woods?” she asked.

“My wife…” he stopped abruptly.

“Ahh, I should have known you were married, all the good men are taken.” She stated.

She turned and walked towards him, holding the glasses with a delicate grace. She handed his glass to him with a slight curtsey, and then sat down across from him on the couch. Sipping her drink, she smiled a childish grin, and then stated “So tell me about it, what brings you here?” He sighed deeply and began to tell his story.

Hours passed, the bottle lessened, and his self-pity grew more and more as he recalled to her the last ten years of his life. “Your not to blame.” She said with a softened smile. She drew her arms around him, consoling him with her touch. He felt comfortable, but more importantly, he felt loved.

She wiped a tear from his eye, and smiled again, this time more lovingly than before. Within an instant, his lips were pressed against hers, locked in a passionate kiss. He pressed his hand against her neck, drawing her into him even more. He felt the lusting in him grow as she pulled away from him, lending him her hand, and begging him with her eyes to stand. He stood slowly, as she led them to the bedroom.

She closed the door behind them, enclosing them both within their own passions. She stood before the mirror, and turned to face him. Slowly she untied the belt that sheltered her precious body. The robe fell from her shoulders, and lay upon the bends of her arms. Her auburn hair flowed down her back a little past her shoulders, and her bare breasts yearned for his touch.

She walked casually towards him with a seductive smile, and slowly unbuttoned his shirt. Running her fingertips across his back, her nails sent shivers through his spine. She caressed his chest lovingly, and with a soft kiss she whispered, “I’m off duty now, but I can still use the money.” She slowly unbuckled his belt, and reached down to unbutton his pants. Again she whispered, “Do you have any?”

She caressed his hardness through his pants, and instinctively he took out his wallet. “How… how much do you n…need?” he uttered, not thinking.

“Fifty dollars. I wouldn’t ask, but business is business.” He halfway paid attention to her as his mind kept thinking about the child that died. He reached into his wallet, pulled out two twenties and a ten, then handed them to her. “Thank you good Sir.” She said softly.

She reached behind her, and placed the money on her dresser, then slowly slipped off his pants.

She kissed his chest, and felt his hardness against her stomach as she pressed against him. “Come, come with me,” she purred. She took his hand in hers again, and led him to the bed.

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