I know, I know, there hasn't been an update in a few weeks. :P
The last chapter I needed to write went longer than I had initially expected. Right now the novel is sitting at 69k words, but between editing, and the fact that I plan to rewrite the end, that could change quite a bit. Otherwise, I'm thrilled with the way this book came out and I think it'll be a fun ride for anyone willing to dip into a sea of blood, carnage, and madness. It's horror at its finest, so I know it's not everyone's cup of tea, but it will be awesome for anyone who cares to give it a shot.
Outside of that, I'm working on 2 comic scripts about 2 vastly different things, and collaborating with another author on another novel. We're still in the discovery/brainstorming phase, but it's already panning out to be a fun science fiction piece. The 2 comic scripts should be completed in the next week, or two. As soon as I start seeing some art from those I'll share more on them.
Once I rewrite the end of Domitianus, and start the editing process, I'm going to start jotting notes on "Damsels and Dinosaurs". It's going to be a full on, high fantasy novel, with dinosaurs, centered around M and Iris. It'll be nice to be writing from their ridiculous perspectives again. Of the crazy characters I've come up with over the years, their personalities and exchanges are my favorites.
I'm somewhere around 1/2 way done with this final chapter, and then it'll be editing time. I think that process will be fairly quickly this time around, as my writing has cleaned and tightened up over the years. Practice does make perfect, or at least better. That being said, and as the title suggest, there will be a delay in getting this out.
This time of the year is when lit agents are looking for horror. From my understanding it takes 6 months to a year to get an unpublished book in the right hands, get it looking pretty, and get it out to the masses. So, for the next week or so, I'm going to be pitching to anyone I come across. I figure it'll take a couple months to get rejected by everyone, in which case I'll try Amazon Scout. That process takes 45 days, if memory serves, and once it gets rejected there I'll publish it myself. Yes, it sounds like I'm planning for disaster, and in a way I am. But, I need to try.
No matter what happens, I'll be chugging along on the next CoM book. It'll be a pre-historic fantasy this go around. Meaning it'll have dwarves, elves, magic, and all that high fantasy jazz, but also dinosaurs. It'll be a standalone just like all the spinoffs, but it'll treat books 1-6 as backstory. From that, I expect it to be longer than the previous books, but we shall see. Either way it should be super fun. How can high fantasy, dinosaurs, and M not be?
It's been darn near a month since I posted on here, and it's not for a lack of desire. Between solo packing up my rental in Baltimore, driving back to Kansas City (a two day drive), painting/cleaning my house, unpacking, and then having a table at the Kansas City Comic Con it has been one hell of a month. But, I survived and I'm ready to get back to killing people....on paper...for this book.
Kristofor Harris will be making a brand new cover for this one. I wasn't too keen on my attempt, so I'm bringing in the pro. I know I mentioned that in the last post, but I felt it was worth putting his name out there again. He does great work and I try to give him all the free press I can.
I really only have a chapter left to write on this one, but it'll probably be a long chapter. Plus, I still am not 100% moved in to this house and I still have 1 more room to paint, so it's not going to be a fast write. Additionally, there's that whole job hunt mess to tend to. Currently, I'd love to see this out in October. It's the perfect month to publish a horror book, plus it gives me time to finish and have it edited.
Dom's book is coming along and growing beyond it's original design. This is both a good thing, and a bad thing. Clearly, it's bad because that means it isn't coming out when I had originally wanted it to. On the other hand, it'll be a more complete piece with more content that what was expected. I use the word content, rather than pages, for a reason. This book is not dialogue heavy like the Chronicles of M books, so the word count will be closer to books 3, or 4 of the series, but it'll be contained in less pages. Dialogue just takes up more page space.
Because it's taking longer, it's given me some opportunities that I wouldn't normally have. For example, Kristofor Harris (I'll post a FB link to him below) will be designing the cover for me based on his reading of the book. He does some fantastic work, so I'm sure what he comes up with will be glorious. I've also had a moment to decide what to write next.
Chronicles of M will be getting a seventh book. This, of course, will follow the story where I left it in The Purge (no, not the movies), but this time around I'm going to write it as a beginning point for new people to the story. For one, it's time to give another starting point and turn the previous plot into backstory. Secondly, this is going to be semi-high fantasy in its scope, so....what happens in modern day, stays in modern day? I saw semi-high fantasy because it won't just be elves, magic, dwarves and all the usual high-fantasy stuff, but there will be other elements in play that should play well with the theme, but I really have no idea if it declassifies the book as high fantasy. Don't know, don't care. It'll be a very fun, action packed story, and that's all I really care about.
After that, unless something else comes to mind, I'll probably add in another Death Squad book. Since this is at least a year out I haven't put any real thought into it, so who know's what direction it'll take. I may decide to postpone it for another Hitori book, but we shall see.
I wish I had more news than I do, but it's been a rough month. Between trying to prepare for our journey back to Kansas City at the end of July, my son's various activities, illness, and an assortment of other reasons, there hasn't been much of an advancement on Dom's book. However, since I won't be able to afford the editing until after the Kansas City Comic Con ( http://www.kansascity-comiccon.com/ ) in mid August I have plenty of time to finish this up.
There's also two major challenges with this book that are equally fantastic, and downright annoying. One is the vocabulary. I generally don't get too graphic, gory, or otherwise descriptive about attacks in my other books. They are action/mystery/fantasy pieces, not horror. So, where I would normally type like a madman, I'm having to stop and consider every word. Fun, but stressful and slow going.
The other hurdle I'm facing is information gathering. Unlike the rest of the books in the CoM universe, this book takes place over a huge span of time and a lot of that history is not easy to find. Specifics on the Germanic tribes during the 300's AD is a good example. The tribes who were still dealing with Rome, not the ones who moved into France. It does make a difference.
Technically, I should have made this into a series of its own, but I didn't think itwas the best option. Classic horror novels rarely have sequels. Their movie counterparts tend to and they are almost always worse than the original. A lot of times, it's not the acting, or the plot that kills a horror sequel, it's repetition. You can only watch the same guy chase the same girl so many times through a forest before you just don't care any more. That right there is what I'm afraid of doing with a horror series and why this is a solitary book. Dom ripping people to shreds is going to be jaw dropping badassary, but only for a while.
Dom's book is at about 49k words, so technically I could be done with it soon. I'll probably add a fair amount more to it, as I think the meat of the story requires it. No matter what, It'll be published and ready by August. At least, that is my goal.
The first book of Chronicles of M (link on the right margin, or below this) is now permanently free everywhere. That is to say, the e-book is free, not the paperback. That I have no control over.
I do have some other stuff on the horizon, but some of it I can't talk about for the time being. But, if it happens it'll be awesome, and a whole new avenue for me to venture into. We shall see. Either way, thanks for continuing this ride with me, your support is the reason I continue on.
Dom's book is at about 37k words right now, putting it well beyond the half way mark. It's going well so far and due to some unforeseen hurdles (not even worth mentioning) I've decided to go for more of a "greatest hits" feel with Dom's life. I have about 1800 years to cover in this book and writing it any other way would require a large series of its own. I just don't see the life of a genocidal maniac remaining fresh and interesting for more than a couple of books. If you want proof watch of the long running horror movies from the 80's. It gets old after a bit.
In addition to only writing about the highlights, I'll keep with the Q&A style that occurred in the Death Squad book. It'll help to transition between each story of Dom's life, as well as keep a certain amount of consistency within the CoM world. Afterall, Uhler is writing this book for Dom, much like he did for the Death Squad. Is anyone going to notice, much less appreciate that little tidbit? Probably not, but you'll know and I'll know - that's enough for me.
Behind the Eyes of Death is coming along decently. I started working on the end, because I knew it was going to be trouble. The issue isn't so much what the ending will be, as that's already been handled in CoM book 6, it's how to present it. Normally, I would just wrap it out as I would any other book and move on, but this is different. This is a horror book. I don't think it's right (to the reader) to have all this blood, guts, and death ended on a note of super powered mutants, magic and the general weirdness that is CoM. However, that is the ending. So, I'm deciding if I should end it prior to that, or think of some way to horrify that ending a bit. Maybe bring on the CoM weirdness in a slow burn, rather than a quick slap across the face.
I've also started working on a short, sci-fi story. It's completely unrelated to any of the CoM stuff, but maybe not necessarily outside the world of it. After all, Catch and Release is set in the CoM world, so why not this?
About time for another update, eh? Well, let's get to it!
Dom's book is a little under halfway done with the first draft. At least, it might be. With such a long span of time from ancient Rome to slightly in the future it's hard to decide how many stories to include in this one. I have about a dozen different ideas written down that could be used. All of them would work, but I'm afraid that if I have too many stories that the gruesome fun of the book will become diluted to the point of boredom. Watch all the Nightmare on Elm Street moves back to back and you'll see what I mean.
Eric Wright (https://www.facebook.com/417thecomic/) started working on the comic adaption of Five Man Midget Death Squad for Planetscape #2. This will be a short (8 pages) centered on the Red Caps story. If you don't know what I'm talking about then it looks like you have a book to buy. *wink wink*
Dom's book now has a title AND a cover! After a long search and many title suggestions, I went with "Behind the Eyes of Death". To those of you who were nice enough to generate ideas for me: thank you. Usually I have no problem coming up with titles, but this being horror I felt it needed to be especially good. Anyways, the cover will be at the bottom of this post. I don't have an exact date in mind for getting this one out. Only that it'll be before KCCC in August. I'm about 1/3 of the way done with the first draft.
Planetscape #1 is still in progress, that will def be done for KCCC. With that one I will have two short stories and some lettering in it. I think the last page count was over a hundred, that is including all the artists and fellow writers who contributed.
Fear Collective I hope will be completed by KCCC as well, but I am not positive on that one. I'm really hoping so because I have....4 short comics, and probably 7 or 8 stories lettered in that one.
One of the artists I'm working with for Planetscape #2 is asking for a script. He's super eager to get started, and I'm more than happy to oblige him. With #2 being a fantasy theme, I am adapting part of a chapter from the Death Squad novel for the short comic. So be ready for some steampunk dwarves killing goblins in Scotland. For #2 I'll def have one other story that I essentially ghost wrote (?) for the artist, and probably at least 2 or 3 more short comics as well. Who knows how much lettering I'll end up doing.
I like to keep busy :)