Archive for April, 2010

08-24-10 Update: A PDF of the complete novel has now been moved to the Gimmie Stuff page.

After three years of semi, self-directed nonlinear exploration, the current novel is ready to be shared.  I’m not abrogating any of my rights by posting this material.  I’m exercising them by making a creative statement in this fashion.

This is as good as I can make it given my present resources, circle of contacts, and skill level. I’ve striven to attain a level of readability that allows general standards of understanding, though I recognize and expect there will be gaps sharper and more experienced eyes will notice.

I dispute the position that if you’re not a published writer, not making a living at what you’re doing, and not up to the standards of professional markets then you’re a failure and what you’re doing is a complete waste of time.

Before you read, keep in mind that in my writing I have consciously chosen complexity over accessibility, introspection over immersion, and innovation/subversion over conventionality.

After starting with a PDF of the preface and first chapter, I’ll post a link to a chapter every few days.  After the whole thing is posted, a few days later I’ll post a PDF of the complete novel.  A link to that PDF will go in the Gimmie Stuff page.

This is the text for people who want a story.  For those who want an object, I plan to make a physical book available by way of POD as yet to be determined.  For the interested, there will likely be a limited special edition with a map, black and white illustrations, and a glossary.  I’m still working on those extras.  I’ll look into an ebook version too, what the hek! And if I can get my courage up I’ll make an audio file in addition, whee!  All stuff, all the time.

Diamond of Darkness is a young adult fantasy adventure, teenager coming-of-age story during a time of magical upheaval.  You get to hang out with Rordan the protagonist and know his thoughts while he struggles with his destiny.

As my friend Turtle would say, “Enjoy your meal!”

Confession time.

One of my secret fears has been that I would become famous and forced to live a lie of who I really am. Lots of people struggle to become known; I’ve been trying to hide and not be seen. I just don’t have what it takes to maneuver the reefs and sharks of public attention.

Then I got a little older and found that if I didn’t live my life in the manner that was my creative path, I would be living a lie too. I had to be who I was meant to be or I would be turning my back on the blessings I had been given.

That doesn’t mean I am someone.

All throughout my life, people have been saying I ought to get down with my gifts and live up to them. I’ve been avoiding that like you wouldn’t believe. There have been more than a few moments of psychological jeopardy in which I cried, clenched my fists, and threw up. I didn’t want to have anything to do with that dog doo! Land’s sakes, get out of my life!

Do you know how relieved I would be if the facts of life said I was nobody?  Do you know how special you are to see me dancing like this, unknown by anyone? To confess and finally say to the universe, “Ha! Eat it dummies! I’m nobody, see?!” I can rest on the couch and sigh with relief.

Except I got to do this stuff and that risks the unknown for me.

Every day is a holy ordeal and I think about the people who love me. They touch me in ways I was afraid to acknowledge before. Now, I honor them. I’m of the age where I think now of how I will leave this world. I’ve been hiding. Now I suspect I am being dishonest by not being real to those who know the deal.

That doesn’t mean I have something to say.

I am going to do stuff and if I have nothing to say, it’s okay. It will be a huge pressure off my back. I can finally face the monsters of my life and say, “You don’t know nothing!” I can be a nobody and I will live my life to the fullest as a stupid super-fool.

What if the monsters are right?

I don’t know what I will do. Does anybody? I just want people to like me!

I may have to help people by being someone. I may have to live my life so people have a chance to know their own power.

People must be free.

So I’m puttin’ in The Human League’s “Open Your Heart” and thinking now is the time.

Lies the reason
Faith or treason
Playing a part
End concealing
Try revealing
Open your heart

Rebuilding the back end of the site and generally working on new stuff.  Regression, withdrawal, mourning, elation. All shall spring forward in due time.

067_Vinah_7The highway passed through a growing amount of suburban neighborhoods.  Wesa found herself concentrating more intently on the traffic.  She turned down the music volume, casting it further into the background of her inner thoughts.

Stara stirred from her drifting in and out of sleep.  “We there?”

“Almost,” said Wesa.

“We could drop by Julio’s if you want. See his folks.”  Stara’s eyebrows raised as she pursed her lips.

They passed by a large green sign which read:

Vinah    7

Wesa said, “I’ll pass.  I never want to see his creepy stepmother again.”

Stara sat up and stretched in her seat.  “Just testing your resolve.”

“Trust me, I’m resolved.”

The suburban landscape transformed into a series of garish strip malls and towering signs.

Stara said, “What’s Kelly doing for break?”

“I think he’s spending it with some older hippie girl he’s hot for.  I’m not sure.”

Wesa maneuvered the car out of the way of a speeding trucker.  Her hands tensed on the steering wheel.  “Whatever.  I’m done with him too.”

Stara laughed.  “Oh, come on. I thought you liked being groped under the pretense of horsing around.”  She took off Wesa’s shades and blinked at the daylight.  “Damn, I need to eat more carrots.”

“Have a granola bar,” said Wesa.

“I should have had us stop at the store.  I could have bought some apples or strawberries.”

Wesa glanced at her friend and made a face.  “We can stop at a store once we exit.”

“Nah,” said Stara.  “Just testing my resolve.”

They passed down the highway into the center of Vinah.  Wesa took an exit ramp and slowed the car down, merging her vehicle with downtown traffic.  Progress was measured by brief flows of congestion through changing stoplights.

“You know where we need to go?”

Wesa nodded.  “Drew me a map off MapQuest.”

Stara interrupted her. “MapQuest?  They still around?”

Wesa snorted.  “Yeah, they are.  Anyway—once we hit this intersection, we should ditch the traffic.”

A wave of pedestrians crossed the street in front of the stopped car.  Wesa put her right hand to her ear as an ice pick migraine struck her for four seconds.  She had a flush of sensation throughout her body, followed by relief.  Her vision caught the blur of a pedestrian scooting past the rear of her car, then the light turned green.

Stara said, “You alright?”

“Yeah, just another drive-by migraine. I’m fine.”  Wesa shifted up as the car gained speed, the town drifting out of sight behind.

I’ve heard tell that our foolishness is a redemptive quality.  So today I invite the fool in for some snacks.

Dancing beneath the diamond sky with one hand waving free.