Monday, October 20, 2008

Part I: Projects

I have made a concerted effort to get more writing done and out for submission. So far, this has only managed to increase the number of rejection letters I receive per month, but that's the name of the game. Penn Jillette (of Penn & Teller) said that the best magicians were the ones who put in the most "flight time", the ones who perform the most shows. It's not that much different for writers. The ones who continue put words to paper, send their work out, and take their lumps are the ones who eventually publish. Writing has gotten more difficult for me recently, but only because I require so much more from my work. Mentors have shown me weak points in my work, and I'm managing to stumble onto many of them on my own. Yet, I continue to write and make my work the best I can make it, and then try to make it better. That's the name of the game.

I have several short stories out to different anthologies, and I am polishing a few more to go out to magazines. I've been submitting several pieces to literary magazines, and am working to get a few publishing credits outside of genre fiction. Michael Knost is putting together a new anthology of stories written by West Virginia authors, and I believe I have a story worth submitting. It's unlike anything I've done before, and that's what makes it interesting to write. If there were a theme to my latest works, it has been "Explore New Territories".

With the upcoming publication of "The Monster With the Shape of Me" in Weird Tales, my poetry is gaining a wider audience. My first works as a writer began with poetry, and it has always been a part of me. My recent success, as well as help and encouragement from poets such as Linda Addison, Mike Arnzen, and Brandy Schwan, drives me forward to pursue my poetry and to get more of it out there. I hope all of you will get the opportunity to see more of it soon.

I also have an idea for a series of children's books, inspired by the artwork of a local artist. I am very excited about this new project, but I won't say more about it until Wednesday, and then you'll see why I've waited.

My big project, however, is my novel. The working title is "The Patchwork Queen", and it is a supernatural thriller based in a fictional town in West Virginia. I will be workshopping the novel in January at the Borderlands Press Novel Boot Camp. This project has taken a life of its own, and I already see some changes I want to make to the structure of the novel. I'm looking forward to the critiques in January, and with the help of the instructors and fellow grunts, my plan is to have a finished manuscript to market sometime next year.

What all this boils down to is that how I pursue my writing, how I choose my subjects, and how I plan my career path is changing. The nature of this change, and what it means to me as a writer, is the subject of tomorrow's blog.


Jonathan Frost said...

Change is the nature of this season...

Josh Runyon said...

Best of luck on "Patchwork Queen" and all of your other projects, Brian! :)