Ok, so I was tagged in this post a month ago, but with a few things that happened I had to postpone my blog.
But it’s now a new year; there’s a new outlook, better vibes.
So, the Next Big Thing.
1) What is the working title of your next book?
1000: Time Paradox
2) Where did the idea come from for the book?
There’s a longish story behind this, but the credit firmly lies with Machine of Death . The first anthology has been published, and you can download it for free here. The boys (Ryan North, David Malki and Matthew Bernnardo) were asking for submissions for the second anthology so I thought, “hey why not?” I started writing it, and then hit and exceeded the 7,500 word limit. So I continued and continued and suddenly I had a novel.
3) What genre does your book fall under?
This one’s a bit tricky. I would say Sci-Fi, but it’s also humour, and later end of the spectrum YA (the characters are in their early twenties).
4) What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
Now this one I couldn’t answer. Young Australian actors are hard to come by, and there really aren’t any that look remotely like my characters.
5) What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Dean Harris, a twenty something loser from 2011, uses an app on his phone to travel into the future where knowing how you die determines your status, and he’s the global power.
6) Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
Due to some of the themes and companies that I speak about, I will have to self pub this one. I think if I ever get around to writing the sequel I would try to get that one through a publisher.
7) How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?
It’s so far taken me a year and a half and it is still unfinished. It’s in desperate need of an overhaul.
8) What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
It’s similar to the stories told in 1984, Brave New World, Blind Faith, but it’s a new modern version. It’s that same hierarchial story that’s been told time and time again, but the thing that divides society is knowing how you die. So it’s the same story, but it’s different. It looks at things in a very real way, and proposes a very possible future.
9) Who or what inspired you to write this book?
All the shit heads that I grew up with in the South Eastern suburbs of Victoria
10) What else about this book might pique the readers interest?
The main character is gay. This is obviously not an LGBT book, but I think it’s time that we stop pretending that being LGBT is something special.
There is no true love, just some lust.
Also it doesn’t shed a nice light onto Apple.
And now I tag:
So now you’ve heard about it, where’s it at? Well…
It’s sitting on the 50 – 60 thousand word mark. No, nothing to sneeze at there, and I self edit as I go so it’s a tight narrative.
Most of it was written quickly, foolishly, recklessly. A skull crushing, brain smashing gung ho that disallowed contemplation. The result is a 50 – 60 thousand word wonder that is full of holes. The characters kept secrets from me, laughing and shaking their heads as they watched me charging through, knowing that I’d have to drag my sorry self back to the beginning, eventually, grin sheepishly, and start again.
And I ignored them for the most part and continued. Only to hit the brick wall of ‘plot-stuck’ and admit defeat.
And then the characters shared their secrets, let me in on what I didn’t know. And when I asked “why didn’t you say sooner?” They replied “Sooner you wouldn’t have believed us. You would have brushed it off and rubbished the idea. The story still would not have worked.”
And so here I am now, with an influx of information, having to trudge all the way back to chapter two to infuse this new knowledge into what was already written. And considering how much is there… Well, it’s no small task.
So it has been put on a sort of hiatus, until I learn all the secrets. I don’t want to do this writers walk of shame a second time.
On a side note, related and not, I’ve been wondering about crime writers. Mostly if they know who the criminal will be before the end? Do they set up their cast of characters and let them wonder through the narrative on their own accord? Is the author as clueless to the identity of the master criminal as the detective? Or do they know? Do they set it all up, letting the villain leave their trail of clues, encouraging them here and there to leave more if the author thinks it too subtle?
I like the idea of the former. The author with no knowledge, leaving what they think are the right clues, but could be red herrings. When the murderer prestiges themselves in that final act, the author is a little surprised, a little amused and with a laugh says “Of course it was you. It really couldn’t have been anyone else.”
I have a similar character. They started as a name, a nothing, throwaway character, a relationship.
Then they grew.
Grew into their name, grew a personality, a background, their own relationships. And they left me a clue. An incidental line said by someone else, one that didn’t mean anything at the time, was just a glimpse into their half formed life. But then, later, when the narrative was rocketing along, two thirds of the way in, there they were, in a ‘Ta-Da!’ smiling and waving and saying how of course I should have known it was them. And I looked back through what I had written and realised that they were right, it was all there, all the clues, some subtle, some glaringly clunkingly obvious, and in that ‘Ta-Da’ I laugh and smile and say “Of course it was you, it really couldn’t have been anyone else.”