Too Many Ideas

I have been bouncing stories that I wrote to a friend of mine.

The takeaway from the “exercise” is that I need to accept that 2000 words is not long enough, and that I have great ideas that act like an explosion: really cool, but end far to quickly.

I have this tendency to write vignettes: short tales that have a very defined beginning, middle and end that can all be explored in the aforementioned 2000 words. It is not an intentional thing. I never start writing and think “I’m just going to do a short thing today.” I go into a project with the full intention of writing something substantial, but I also refuse to pad things out with bullshit. Nothing kills the pace of a book I am reading more than twenty pages of bullshit bookended by three or four pages of amazing.

I know: I am shooting myself in the foot. If I even wish to be published, I need to flush out the worlds and accept that bullshit is necessary.

In sending my friend parts and pieces of my collection, I came across Elane, which is published in my book.

Self-Editing

I feel like I have gone on this rant in prior updates, but I am going to speed ahead without double checking because it is relevant again today.

As per usual, I have been writing again. Well, I have been looking at the 40 pages that I have so far smashing my head against walls trying to get the motivation to continue writing again. Yes, I have everything mapped everything out for the next hundred-or-so pages, but I find the will to go forward hard to find through the gluttony of worries that my idea is too far ahead of what I am capable of as a writer right now.

I have always been the last person to add to a project. I am a drummer. I am the guy who edits, cleans, and I was a salesperson selling someone else’s dream for my entire adult life to this point. Even the book I did write is a recollection of events I went through, and therefore did not require much imagination on my part.

All of my thoughts on the idea reminded me of editors and just how much I would love to be one. Kind of: I could only imagine the horrible script they read on the daily and just have to focus on tense, grammar, and speeling. I do not envy them in that regard, and I tip my hat in their direction. I have had my friend Luka edit my stuff in the past, and I had an editor (who did a less-than-perfect) on the first draft on You’re Not Dead.

The idea of editing my own stuff seems ludacris to me. Trusting me to fix a mistake that I made makes no sense. I made the mistake because, likely, I assumed that it was not a mistake. To assume that I would find it on subsequent read throughs is silly, to put it politely. Especially when it comes to things like tone and tense. There are things that I hear in my head, and there is a VERY good chance they are wrong.

I recently got my friend Hannah to read over what I have written so far in my next work. She criticised my dialogue as feeling manufactured. That is a comment I have gotten in the past, and a trap that I cannot seem to figure out how to rectify.

Well; check that. I do know that I can rectify it, and will in future publications. My frustration is that, in the piece, it was SOMEWHAT intentional. I AM NOT SAYING THAT SHE IS WRONG FOR CALLING ME OUT ON IT. This brings me back to my point of self-editing a work. I know what my end intention is; I know my writing can feel stilted, if not robotic at times. I just don’t know how to not be that way where the end justifies the beginning. I want my writing to be enjoyable all the way through, and not to just have an “ah-hah!” at the end. Unfortunately, shy of co-writing, I have to somehow fix the way my brain deals with conversation and abstract thoughts myself.

Self-editing is like teaching yourself sex through masturbation. Parts can be achieved, you may personally enjoy the end result, but everyone else will just be bored.

almost there…

I’m not going to lie: this post is kind of being written to push my numbers over an edge. If I get 60ish people to read this, I have had my best year since 2016!

I must say, I am super proud of what I have done here. In five years, I have written over 176 thousand words, and have had over 18 thousand views. I started writing this to get my story out, and have let the posts evolve into a self-gratifying mess that people still enjoy reading for some reason. I have written two and-a-half books, and am working on the next one. I have 197 wordpress followers, and hope to hit 200 by the new year. I have 170 followers on my FaceBook page, and 12 on my YouTube channel (that I have only started posting to with some regularity).

My point being that this decade has sucked, brutally, when it comes to my being. The major plus side is that it has been amazing to grow in other ways. I hope that the next decade could be even marginally better, though I have plans to make my next year better than this decade was, and nothing you say or do can stop me from trying.

As mentioned, I have a new book being written, and my plan is to have it done by mid next year. I have tried the independent release thing, and I was not successful at it. I’m not regretting the release of You’re Not Dead, but it really did not even break even. AS I type this, I received a notification that I was charged for pressing renewal, and in spite of being doubled in length, it did not even break even with last years renewal.

I have been kind of writing the next podcast. I have to backtrack and further explain some things, but I think it will be worth the confusion. I am going to link the last two together in a more cohesive structure.

Anyway, I plan on making this my last update for the year. So Happy Holidays! I love you all! Tell your friends to come say hi! Depress someone, buy my book! I will write to you again in the new year!

Serious question…

Just wondering: how many pages would be satisfactory for a novel?

I realize that is a loaded question. Inquiries may arise over how interesting the content is, or does the story miander, but I like to set a realistic goal to strive towards.

Right now, my goal is 100,000 words. That’s roughly 200 pages. I feel pretty confident that I can hit that goal. One of my favourite books (Fight Club) is only 49,962 words. My last book, in its final form, clocked in at 39,130 words. I currently sit just shy of 10,000 in my next work. I set myself a deadline of the end of May to have it completed. I feel this is very possible. I just have not decided if being finished includes editing or not…

I implore you to respond in comments, either on here or my FaceBook page, to tell me what you think is a good length. Am I over-reaching? Under-reaching? Both, somehow?

To reply…?

I have gone a couple of months without saying too much about the review that was published. Official opinion? I like it! I was very honoured that they compared me to Chuck Palahniuk, as he is one of my favourite writers. Even being called “undercooked” by comparison is like saying that a painting is no Mona Lisa. That comparison alone brought tears to my eyes as I read it.

I refuse to refute any points I do not agree with. I am a firm believer in the idea that a work is a living entity that exists on its own. The review, though I do think it is a bit too tough on the vignettes, is very good. Even the “undercooked” is surrounded by words of encouragement and praise, so I need to stop focusing on it.

It’s hard to detach personal attachment from something that I created. I still get mildly defensive when people attack bands I was in a lifetime ago. Hell, I have notice lyrical discrepancies in regards to The Twin and I will never elaborate on that. If you can hear where we were offensive, let’s talk about it. I’ll tell you 234982340 other times you should be offended, and I will fully agree that we should have payed more attention to what we were saying.

On the topic of creation, I am about 1/5th into writing my next book. I know that does not sound far, but you have no idea how little hair I have left trying to wrap my mind around timeline and greater scope. I have the ending done, I have a major event. Now, it’s just a matter of connecting those two points, while also making those points make sense in the greater narrative. Also, I need to give some importance and gravity to the initial event.

I showed a very early draft to my friend Pat, and he pointed out how there was no reason to care that an event happened to the main character. At that time, I had the inciting event happen right at the beginning. I still hold that it could have worked, but starting with an emotional moment only to have it undercut by how we don’t know the character is not ideal…

MY GREATER POINT

If you donate to my Patreon (as low as a dollar a month) you will be listed in the “Thank You”s at the end of the text. I will have the book done by 2021, because 2020 is a garbage fire and I want nothing I do to be immortalized by this horrible year.

The quotes

If you follow me on Twitter or Facebook, you will notice that I have started releasing out-of-context quotes from You’re Not Dead.

It’s very interesting. I haven’t read the book since I finished editing it, and this is a great way to A) renew interest for other people and B) Revisit my work without feeling like I am under any real pressure.

Below is what I have released so far, but please let me know if you have a better line in mind for me to put to the masses:

  • For that hour, the Hero felt like he was drowning above water.
  • What is even the point in self-improvement if I am not to enjoy whatever I achieve?
  • Maybe it was for the best that he was alone.
  • Luka hugged him./He tried as hard as he could to hug back./He tried to call her a fool for thinking he was gone/He tried many things.
  • In a hospital near you, a heart monitor squeals./In a town far away, a girls heart breaks

New Book

As some people have heard, I am working on a new book! I started only recently, so timeline is a bit ragged at the moment. I have an idea of where I want to go, as well as at least two characters flushed out.

SURPRISE! It will not be a happy read. For the people who have read, what I dubbed a, WIP: I have scrapped about half of it in favour of continuing this new direction that I pieced together in my head.

The one of two things I am keeping from my initial 20-or-so pages is the theme of survivors guilt. I have a character that is dealing with the death of her children by blaming herself for their death on a legal level. I am not spoiling much, as even I don’t quite know where her story will end up.

My goal is to have the book be about 200 pages long. I am not going to put more restraints on myself, for fear of not measuring up to my own goals.

Do you want to be in the Thank You list? Check out my Patreon. Anyone who donates even $1 a month will get their name immortalized at the end of the book!

Check out my already released book here! If you do not feel like giving monthly, buying a copy of You’re Not Dead helps out a tonne.

Let’s do more!

I have been contemplating what else to do outside of writing and producing. I have considered bolstering my YouTube channel, but that would feel forced. I am currently working on a new book, so writing a screenplay on the side seems a bit cumbersome. I cannot draw, and really do not have an urge to learn.

This is the conundrum that I find myself in: I feel like I should be doing more in the arts, but I have no idea where to put my effort into. Even worse, I hate everything I do even when I am told it’s okay. Hating everything you do is kind of the “artist-dilemma” though. I have yet to meet anyone doing anything involving some sort of art who thinks that their work is greater-than-par. I have met a few who think that they are hitting a new niche, which is cool.

I just keep holding out that Hannah will give me new Chance Procedure things to work on. I made that video for Patient Zero a while ago, and I have an itch to make that a full song. I have been in studio enough to know that you have to be prepared, so I’m not pushing as hard as I could.

Oh! Interesting fact; my old singer (Rahib) just had his birthday! I don’t know why I had an urge to share that on this blog, but there it is! He’s 30, so he is 15 days older than my little brother.

Side note: have you picked up the latest version of my book? It’s almost 3X larger, more grammatically correct, and (I might be biased, but) WAY better. I mean, it’s 1230298341X more depressing, but WAY better. Amazon finally updated some shit, though it’s still awkward to navigate. I have done everything I can on my end to make it easier. Review comes out soon, I hope!

Feed me

Just a reminder that I do have a Patreon if you can afford to help. I do have a few pets that like to eat, so any small bit of funding helps in a big way.

Just $1 gets you early releases on ansP releases. It usually comes at you one month ahead of time!

I already have the next story written. It is very short, but I think that it’s one of my best. I laugh every time I read it over.

The last story didn’t perform well, but give it a read anyway! Share with your friends!

Also, don’t forget that I have issued the first 100 pages of You’re Not Dead for free. I know its not much, but it’s all I can afford to offer in this time of isolation. If you enjoy what is there, the full version is available on my “Books” page.

Mildly Angry

I had this long post talking about the current climate with the impending health crisis and isolation. I also talked about how I am fixing things in regards to my book on Amazon dot com and brought up different things we could all do instead of just bashing our heads in silence. I talked about feeling like a burden to friends and family. I wrote about how horrible everything may seem, then came up with this fantastic anecdote to ease minds.

I wrote over 1000 words, then WordPress was a douche and erased EVERYTHING. I don’t know why, what I did wrong, or if I can ever fix it.

So, I am not going to let it win this time. I am writing a short post expressing my disappointment. Before anyone says “hurr that’s wordpress hurr”, I know. I have heard of such things happening. I realize that this is far from a perfect platform, but this is all I can afford right now. So fuck off.

The short version of what I was saying about the book: Amazon dot com is still showing the first press of You’re Not Dead, meanwhile Kobo is just being stupid. I recommend using the Friessen Press bookstore directly to ensure that you are getting a right press. They are not expensive, and have printing offices in England and the United States (if you’re concerned about shipping costs).

In the meantime: I am going to cry into a pillow and hope my dogs leave me alone long enough to find some sort of