Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Writing and Publishing

I've been writing a ton... Not here, I'm afraid. I may not post on this blog as often as I should if I expect anyone to read it... Sorry about that. But I have been getting a lot of writing and publishing done! I'm awaiting the proof copies of two new books, just formalized them on Monday. "Synthetic Marmalade" is a collection of my poems, lyrics and "spells" with my b&w illustrations, and "Neo-Gnosis" is my Rant on Christianity today, some of which became (in greatly condensed and graphicized form) "Holy Shit: Or... Pat Robertson Is the Anti-Christ".

I've also been able to get a lot done on the sequels to "Vatican Assassin". Untitled book three is rolling along, but I've spent more time working on book two: "Vatican Ambassador"! I've been able to finish the second draft (I think... some indecision over where book two will end and book three begin...), and I'm cranking on the third draft, which is where the book really starts to come together in my process.

My process? In this case, I wrote the original short story years ago, beginning with BC in the sewers trying to get away with murder. Something clicked for me, and I decided to figure out a future history to get me to the story's date and time. That timeline suggested a larger story, so the timeline turned into an outline for a trilogy. I also began writing background pieces on different aspects of my universe: BC, the UTZ, the OPO, other aspects you won't be coming across until later... I work from my outline to write my first draft. I like to write the first draft out in longhand in notebooks, just letting the ideas spew forth. My second draft comes as I type what I've written out into the computer. I edit and polish and fix as I go, adding bits and pieces, fixing continuity. But the third draft, I love! This is when I come back to the text as more of a reader, and realize where I need to smooth out the story so the reader knows what I'm talking about.

After today, I'm about 30 pages in to the third draft. Here's a sneak peak, in all its raw goodness:

BC zones out and lets the ceremony go by in a blur. He tries not to pay too much attention. He knows they sign the Declaration; he stands and applauds with the crowd. Then he files out with the rest of the attendees for the mandatory after-reception.

Well, gotta attend this, at least for a little while. I don’t want to deal with any of these assholes, really. There’s Wentworth... looking at me, coming this way! Shit.

BC tries to avoid him, manages to duck out a side door.

Strategic exit. He’s the last guy I want to talk to. Especially after the news I got about Fiza.

A couple months ago, Fiza’s name was listed among the recently deceased on a report from Wentworth Station.

I might have to kill him on the spot. And that would be so messy, so undiplomatic of me as the ambassador...

BC hurries away from the reception. He heads back towards his office. He’s just heading down the hall to his section when two goons appear in front of him. BC tries to look nonchalant.

“Hi guys! Afraid you missed mass this morning...”

When all else fails...

BC turns and runs... right into the chest of a third goon who's snuck up behind him.

“Ooof!”

“Mr. Wentworth wants to see you,” the goon says to BC.

Insistent Bastard...

“Unh...” is all BC manages to say, as one of the first two goons catches up behind him and clubs him hard on the back of the head.

That hurts...

BC blacks out.

Just a taste of what's to come (and, as advertized, fresh and raw)! BTW: I'm looking for readers to read through the third draft (once completed)and give me feedback. Email me if you're interested. I'll post more on the two new books, the poems and the rant, when they're out and on the street, probably in a couple of weeks!