Saturday, February 25, 2012

Verification, Novella News, and Meryl Streep (?!?)

Friend Kim sent me this article by David B. Coe pretty much confirming my decision to publish novellas as e-books. Nice to get some outside verification!

Just finished the second Italo & Vincenzo novella, "The Doppelgänger's Shadow," which is a sequel to "Cloaks of Vermin and Fish," both of which will be published on Smashwords as soon as I can convince Kaiser to finish up the cover for the latter. I even offered some inspiration. Kids these days, spoiled, I tell you! 

Anyway, in the interest of full disclosure, I myself got some inspiration from a recent interview with Meryl Streep. Now I'm not one for following which actors are in which movies - usually those kind of conversations lose me after about thirty seconds. Honestly, I'm just not much of a movie/TV watcher. But I was impressed by some of the things Ms. Streep had to say about acting, particularly her notion that the actor's job is not to fool the audience, but to fool the other actors. This idea plays as a central conceit in the beginning of "The Doppelgänger's Shadow". Add to this hypothesis a pair of identical twins with little in the way of wits, throw in a shapeshifting mimic and . . . well, I don't want to give anything more away. Suffice it to say that I'm pretty pleased with the results!

Now, I have to get all this stuff typed up and formatted. I write longhand before typing and editing as I go. Call me old-fashioned, but there's something visceral about writing with a pen in my hand that I don't get from typing on a keyboard (though I should like to test my established norms on something like this). But I digress, further distracting me from getting the novella into publishable form. 

Back to the slave-pits with me!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Viva La Novella!

Blog, blog, blog, blog. It's time to abandon the LJ blog, methinks. RIP. And Facebook? Sorry, I actually *like* compartmentalizing my life. Give me Google+. The purpose of this blog is primarily for my ruminations on writing, reading, editing, and publishing. I claim no expert knowledge outside of having a few short stories published, having edited a few anthologies, and being recognized here and there with an award or an honorable mention.

I'll start with this: What to do with that bastard child of the fiction form, the novella? Now, I've written my share of short stories and found some success publishing them. I have a couple of novels that my agent is shopping around and I'm confident that, in time, they'll find homes.

But these pesky novellas, caught between the ADHD-enhanced web format (so amenable to short, short stories) and the "must earn return on investment" print format (killing trees costs money, so you'd better kill enough to make it worth it in the eyes of the consumer), just can't seem to find a home.

So I made one. I'll be publishing my novellas at smashwords until some lucky production company buys the movie rights to any or all of them. For example, I've already posted my novella Archangel Morpheus. I love the ability to give readers a significant percentage of the novella as a sample (in this case 30%) and the option to offer the book as a free gift (reviewers, contact me if you're interested).

I've found a bit of a stride with the novella form, lately, as well as some related longer short stories, some of which I may offer for free at smashwords. Expect to see more in the not-too-distant future. And, Viva La Novella!
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Addendum:

This morning I heard this interview with author Richard Russo in which he unveils that he copied my idea is also one who publishes his novellas (well, at least a novella) in e-book format because not many publishers out there are publishing hard-copy novellas. He also bows to my superior arguments reflects my views that the novella is an under-rated form that could have much greater market appeal. My e-novellas can be found here, here, here, and here. Enjoy!