Sunday, November 16, 2008

Cross Your Fingers...

Why is this man smiling?
Tune in tomorrow and find out!

Well, I typed a whole bunch of words yesterday but the five most important to me were 'the end' and 'to be continued.' After four years I've finished what I think is probably going maybe to be if I'm lucky a solid version of the first volume of the damned novel. The first chapters of this version are dated July 3, 2008 and the current draft is just over ninety-four thousand words. I've got a suspicion that the Monday night mob are going to tell me that some of it seems rushed and that I need to describe the settings more thoroughly.

Even if they don't, I still think that's the case. But I'm done enough to be able to look at the whole thing. I went through it and read each fiftieth page and thought about what had happened over the course of those fifty pages that had led the characters to this moment in the story. The manuscript is three-hundred and thirty-two pages long. It's a novel, all right. But is it a good novel?

Keep your fingers crossed.

One question that's starting to concern me is whether or not I should serialize the novel on-line. I'm not at all concerned about potential loss of individual sales. What I'm wondering is whether or not it will affect my chances of selling the book to a publisher. Gonna have to do some research.

Anyway, I'm going to let it sit for a while and focus on art for a couple of months before going back and doing a line edit, and then I'm going to be giving out reading copies.

(By the way, if anyone is interested in being a reader please feel free to let me know; put The Ghost Rockers into the title of your email and I'll get back to you -- the first ten people are in.)

After I get feedback on those I'll do one last edit and start looking for an agent. And while I work on those edits I'll also be starting to get into the next volume -- by developing one while finishing the other I'll be able to keep the continuity tighter.

The novel is very thoroughly plotted from the events leading to the end of the next volume on -- but the immediate future of things is entirely up in the air. I have no idea what's going to happen next -- which is another reason why I'll be working on that issue at the same time I'm reviewing the previous events.

It's a pretty odd piece of work -- it's hard to tell if it's a roast fantasy with a buddy soap opera stuffing or a confessional autobiography frosted with horror. There's a good bit of social realism and some fireworks and a few decent monsters and some tunes and fried egg-cheese-and-bologna sandwiches for Pete's sake.

Boy do I hope it doesn't suck. I mean, anything this big and loud and ridiculous -- it is just five inches to the left of being one of those things with a map and a glossary, if that, all kinds of ghosts and creatures and historical anachronisms and so on -- so of course it sucks.

But does it suck properly?

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