Friday, March 24, 2017

Tweaking the Tanuki

A few days ago I started serializing "A Kitsune, A Coyote, and a Tanuki walk into a bar..." on Wattpad.  I like seralizing.  It keeps me writing - or in this case - rewriting.  And rereading.

I hate rereading my own work.  I always decide it sucks.  However, I am attempting to mature as a writer here and apply many of the terrific ideas and methods and principles I've been reading about for the last couple of years.  So this is the first time I'm rewriting (and serializing) and editing with those in mind.

The main reason I'm doing it now is because I really like this group of kids (they're 15, well, more or less) and I really like the town (Locoweed) and plan to write quite a few stories of varying length and subject matter set there.  I also sort of loved this novel when I first wrote it.  Then I reread it and decided it wasn't DONE, that the great denoument scene almost certainly demanded a sequel and besides, there were more things I wanted to get in - or get the kids into.  Several other stories I have as WIP are either already set in Locoweed, or would work beautifully as, what would I call them, pre-spin offs?  They are written, but they could easily be drawn into affairs in Locoweed and would fit right in.

Welcome to Locoweed, I love it here, hope you do, too.

Well, it's true.  That does mean I have some organizing and note making to do so that there is consistency through out the stories and novels to come.  It's kind of like building a D&D campaign - NPCs, locations, and a world framework have to be in place.

And then I got to picking on the poor kids - the kitsune, coyote, and tanuki in the story.  In the beginning the tanuki girl was the main character, but as characters will do - the kitsune and coyote have come demanding their fair share of time and words.  Not to mention the mysterious wolf.  So they're being fleshed out and growing.

I've concluded Wattpad, for all that I have almost no readers there, is a good spot to do this ongoing development.  Publishing bits will keep me going, even if no one reads them.  Once they're out there, I'm sort of obligated to them.  Or at least I feel that way.

Someday I'll get back on to I am Pagan and finish it, too.  Just a little bit to go - but it's mainly a matter of reformatting the mess Shaxpir made of my formatting.  Not one of my favorite things.  And I'm kind of mad about it to tell you the truth.  It means a lot of going back and forth and back and forth from original webpage to wrecked manuscript that I thought was nearly done.  It is not fun.  And it is redoing something I thought I had already done.  I hate doing that.

A big chunk of the 4th Mr. Odon Ata book also was sucked into oblivion by Shaxpir.  The books of the series are well reviewed, but rarely sell and I can barely even give them away.  Unless I win the lottery and can pay a publicity firm a few thousand to pump them, they never will sell.  And even then...

I've been reading some other kids books for the same age group.  They seem to tear along at a chase movie pace from start to finish.  One explosive event after another, flash, flash, run, run, boom, boom, boom.  It's like the book version of the Fast and the Furious movies, only the movies have the occasional slightly slower scene to at least pretend there is some plot beyond oh look at the fast cars go. I like watching fast cars go fast, I'm not knocking the movies, okay?  Still, it makes me feel like my pokey little books with nice animal stories and kind people are going to go straight into the wastebin if sold to kids who expect non-stop action.  Is there an audience for Mr. Odon Ata?

Personally, I have some problems that cause me to much prefer peace and quiet and slow build up.  I have a feeling there are kids out there who would probably do better with a little slower, quieter pace as well.  But are there?  And do they buy ebooks?

That and the fact that my Kindle income is now about $5.00 a month - most of which comes from sales of "How to eat pussy" has got me having a little existential crisis.

Why do I write books?  I wrote before I had any hope of being published.  I write stuff that I know will never be published.  I ramble for hours on blog posts I know no one reads.  I write because - I write.

With that said...

Publishing ebooks is a royal pain in the ass.  Going through it to make $5 a month?  Not worth it.

Publishing for free online?  Don't I deserve to be paid for my work?  And the website owners - they are making money from ads and sharing MY work.  (They work, too, to create the platform, I know that I used to own websites,too).  Somehow that kind of squicks me.  I mean, we could REALLY use the money.  REALLY.

Here's my life.  I have an external harddrive crammed with writing.  I have piles of sketchbooks full of drawings.  When I die, chuck them all in the fire with me, because no one gives a flying fuck about me, or my creations. Or they want them for free.

I have to buy a hamburger if I want to eat one, right?  Ten minutes later it will be, for all practical purposes, gone forever.  And it probably wasn't all the unique, special, or the individual creation of someone who spent weeks thinking about it. You can't re-eat a hamburger either.  Or share it when you're done.  (Well, I guess you could, but..ew)

But people will buy a hamburger.  And want their novels or artwork for free.

Yeah, never ending pet peeve of mine.

So why do I write?  Because I do.  But to make some money?  I need to start spending more time at the Mechanical Turk.  We really need the money.

And yet, I still spent an hour today making notes for plots and subplots for the Kitsuni, Tanuki and Coyote book.

Face it.  I live in my own little world.  LOL.


Summer Foovay

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