new novel

Some big news: my novel Noir: A Love Story will be coming out July 2014 from Civil Coping Mechanisms. CCM is doing awesome things and I’m super excited to be a part of their growing catalogue, being published by the same people who published one of my favorite writers, JA Tyler, and my favorite title by him, Water. Check out the whole catalogue here and see what’s coming here.

So what is Noir: A Love Story? I’ll keep it short for now, but more will come in the year ahead. A whole year. It’ll probably be best for me to just not think about it until next May. Anyway, Noir: A Love Story is the first novel I ever completed and I did that a little over two years ago. Or, not a little over, more like 30 months ago. I’d say it’s been a long, hard road to publication, but that’s not true. I mostly sat on it, which is problematic, but I’m getting better at submitting things. Anyway, it started from a joke, betting myself that I’d write a novel by Friday [this only a few months after finally becoming comfortable with being a writer who would never write a novel (I now have five written)], and so I started the following morning and by Friday I had a first draft. Saturday I read through it, amazed at what I had, and then I put it in the order it’s in now. I honestly expected to spend months editing that novel because of how quickly it came out, but I truly believe it came out just about perfect, and it remains, more or less, untouched since that Saturday when I shifted all the chapters around to put them in the best order.

I had always wanted to read a novel that could be read in any order but had never found one till I came across Richard Grossman’s The Book of Lazarus, and while my novel and that novel share no similarities, I’d say that’s one thing I accomplished with Noir: A Love Story. There are twenty six narrators all speaking about two people whom they didn’t know or barely knew. It is a detective novel without the detective. It is magic realism and american. It is habitual suicide and the howling frustrations of youth. It’s a novel about many things but all of that’s up to the reader. I could keep talking about this forever so I’ll probably just stop.

But one thing: I’ve written five novels and hundreds of short stories and I honestly believe this is my favorite thing I’ve written. That changes, of course, with each new novel written, but this one keeps coming back to me. I think I’ve perhaps written better things, but nothing that I love quite so dearly as this.

But maybe that’s everyone’s first novel.

We only get one first love, yes?

Anyrate, tracked down the post I made immediately after finishing it. Take a look at September 3, 2010 and see how the process went.

Oh, too, about 3,000 words and 44 pages into the new graphic novel. It’s highly surreal and more a collection of moods and short journeys by an eternal transdimensional man who forever lives his life over and over in different iterations but never remembering the previous world he travelled through. Really digging it and hoping to be done soon. My first graphic novel only ended up being about 8,000 words, and while this will be longer, it’s also much less narratively focused. This is my soundtrack by Ludovico Einaudi:

I’m enjoying the writing very much. I’ll leave you with an image by Kyle Thompson:

Take care, StarChild.

what about

Two more book reviews have been out for a few days/weeks, so I’ll post the links here.

JA Tyler’s Water:

J.A. Tyler’s Water is not a dream. It is two dreams. A dream of rain and a dream of fire. A prayer for land and a hunt for water. It is a dozen children gathered together, telling stories, finding worlds within one another, waiting for the rain to stop if only for a moment. It is a boy wandering the skies and lands, and a girl hiding from the herds of people who will take her apart for the dream she carries inside. It is the sound of silence, the music of the world, the chaos of rain and calamity of fire.

Berit Ellingsen’s Beneath the Liquid Skin:

Many short story collections suffer from monotony, where the stories all too similar, whether it be in content or tone or emotion, but this little book is one of the most fun reads I have recently encountered. It is a display for Ellingsen’s talent and imagination and yet it is so distinctly itself. These stories belong together for reasons I cannot really name, but if one were to be missing, it would be noticed. Where many writers explore the fantastic by revisiting myths or spinning tropes, it is almost as if Ellingsen herself came from somewhere else, some world beyond ours and carried back the stories of that distant place.