The preorder page for The Kindness Book is up and running here! As a reminder, this is the short story collection for children which I am included in, and this is the only opportunity to buy the collection in the United States, though I may include my story in my own collection if I ever manage to write enough that I am proud of to include in a collection of my own.
My story is called A Spring Search and was inspired by my illustration A Hope For Spring which I’ve shared below. It was a serendipitous happening where I posted on Instagram about wanting to write more and thought using my old illustrations as inspirations for short stories would be good, and I was invited to write something and submit it for the collection.
I will do a blogpost next week with my thoughts regarding kindness.
Also, in an effort to spread the kindness outward, I will be donating half of all profits of this preorder to charity to help feed needy children in my local city. Specifics are on the preorder page.
So this weekend, I finally re-read my novel that I started years ago and had planned to jump into finishing for my first completed novel, adding a B-plot from the point of view of the other nation involved. And the bones of the six and half chapters I have written are very good. The world I’ve created is rich in detail, and when I incorporate the mythos that I introduced in The Cephalopod Maid, it will be even more full.
Then last night, I had a dream that sparked an amazing story idea, one that is exciting and timely with metaphors to our modern education system and the progression of our society, one that is maybe more marketable due to the protagonist being a teenager. And now I’m wondering if I should follow the new idea and see where it leads or stick with my original plan and file the new one away with the many, many other novel ideas I have. I don’t know. Somehow this one feels more timely, a more urgent story begging for my attention, but my first novel is looking askance at me and asking why I’m going to shove it aside once again.
It is a tough decision to make, but one I need to make soon because I have to write SOMETHING soon. There are words in me waiting to come out. After spending time polishing and editing the last draft of my graphic novel, it feels like it has been way too long.
So, just in time to begin the new position at work, I’ve completed the rewrites of my graphic novel. Now I’m passing it off to my husband, who will be doing the art for it, and he will read through it and probably make suggestions for what will work better visually. Then we’ll begin picking away at it until we have enough pages done to decide how we’re going to release it to the world, still several years away most likely.
It feels good. Nothing ever comes as fast as I want it to, but when it does finally happen, it feels really good.
The first draft of my graphic novel is done! Only 3 months (::cough:: 4 years ::cough cough::) later than I wanted it to be. But that’s okay. Life is a twisted, winding road, and there is nothing that I can do about that.
I finished Saturday and will be taking a week and 1/2 off to edit something for a friend and give myself some space from the project, then I’ll tackle the rewrites. After that, it passes over to my husband’s hands for editing, then back to me, then it’ll be another year or two before we even start releasing it probably. I still haven’t decided if I want to go the webcomic route or not. We’ll see.
There is always such a feeling of accomplishment when a draft is finished, but at the same time, I always get this huge backlash of self-doubt leading up to the completion of a project, which then spills over into other areas of both my creative and personal life. Fortunately, I find that I finally have the tools to deal with the insecurities as they arise rather than allowing them to linger for any length of time, so that’s a good thing.
I figure that I’ll be able to begin working on my novel in May, which is already half written (requiring major editing), so my goal of releasing a first novel by the end of the year is doable, maybe. It’s the goal, anyway. We’ll see what happens. Chances are, I’ll be moving sometime during the summer months (within the same city), so that will definitely throw my creative schedule off for a while.
Just a reminder that I will be vending at the Buffalo Small Press Book Fair tomorrow and Sunday. If you are a native of Western NY and have nothing else going on, come say hello! It’s a free event, and there’s a lot going on both days.
I’ve got most of the items I need to set up at the table packed and ready to go. I just need to pull items out of an old portfolio case to slip in my original illustrations from The Little Book of Insurrection or the Poetry of My Discontent and finish up my handwritten signs with pricing/deals. I also still need to look up exact directions, decide what I’m going to wear (heavily dependent on the weather), and pack a bag of things to keep me busy at the table should there be a dearth of people coming up to my table.
I don’t have a big sign with my name or anything, but if you are coming, you should be able to find me by looking for the skull artwork from the cover of The Little Book.
I am sometimes given to flights of fancy about my own life, which strikes me as a rather unproductive use of my imagination, and thus a waste of time. So this morning, I had the thought that I should maybe just write fan fics of my own life, and then I realized that maybe that’s what a lot of contemporary fiction is all ready. (I’m completely kidding about writing my own fan fic, by the way.)