Saturday, October 4, 2008


My guts are twisting up inside as I slash and burn down Chapter One!

The only way to get anyone interested in publishing this damn thing is to tighten it up drastically.

"Kill your darlings"... GOD I hate this!

But if I want to get published, if any of this is going to matter beyond myself, I have to do it.

The curtness of the rejections tells me that my previous submissions were not gripping anyone. The pace was plodding.

And let's be honest...I have given friends of mine a look at the book and NO ONE has really gotten back to me on it. That's the polite way of not having to tell me something is not interesting.

In addition to the literary surgery, I spent a good chunk of the day watching bootleg anime courtesy of YouTube. FCC can kiss my ass. None of this stuff has been released commercially in the US otherwise I would go out and buy it already...

But I could not wait, we're talking Fist of the North Star here! Kenshiro, show everybody the strength of your pimp hand!!!

this also means I skipped the wine festival, as much as I wanted to go I couldn't justify the expense, taking the drive out there alone, or bringing home more wine when I am lacking storage for it. I have plenty left that I need to drink as it is...

Anyway, I will have the leaner, meaner manuscript sample ready to send out for Monday.

Friday, October 3, 2008

The proposal letter I am using...

So here is the query letter I open with to get people to read my manuscript... This is the first thing they see so I need to know if it is compelling enough to get them to read the actual work... if it's NOT, please let me know so I can beef this thing up!

Please consider representing my completed fantasy novel about the dismantling of a family in a fading effort to abate a war. When his younger brother is seized as compensation for a perceived insult, twelve year-old Jagantha makes his own disastrous attempt at resolving the conflict. Riding Ten Thunders is Jagantha’s first-person account of an effort to save children from war at the expense of their freedom even as capricious gods make their own demands on the young. The novel emulates African folk tales to starkly address the devastating effects of tribal hatred and the callous warriors who do not behave like the heroic legends Jagantha was raised on.

The manuscript explores Jagantha’s journey through broken segments of a family unit: Mothers struggling to keep their sons from growing into warring men; children abandoned to the forest to shape their own twisted truths; and men lost in battle over patches of dirt where they will be remembered in infamy.

Riding Ten Thunders evolved from a short story of the same name published in the December 2006 issue of e-zine Reflection’s Edge. I have worked as a journalist for more than ten years but have spent a lifetime immersed in myths and legends.

Thank you for considering Riding Ten Thunders.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

should I write a prologue...

To me they are like window dressing to trick you into reading a story. You put all the sexy stuff in a quickie section to lure people in. Even my favorite book uses one.

And my own book is a slow starter. I think the pace of the narrative is correct for the story but it does not set off any fires on the first page.

That is where I am losing people.


Form letter rejection slip...

On to the next agency... after I have a good stiff drink...

Kenshiro, how do YOU feel about the latest rejection notice?

The waiting is driving me nuts...

Okay I am going batty waiting to hear whether or not my book proposal sucks. It's a pass or fail situation, you get no pretty stickers for the effort. I may have 94,000 words of total suckitude as far as I know.

I think my letter was persuasive, but what the heck do I know?

Each day makes me anxious...

Of course there is plenty other stuff to be anxious about these days. In some ways it is a good thing I am not the kind of person with a lot of investments in the stock market so this see-saw action on Wall Street is not hitting me directly but I am sure my 401k is screaming in agony about now.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

I have an idea for next short story...

It combines politics and certain sci-fi elements and... I will try to ram through it tonight heh.

If I don't get it published I will post it here, but not before I give it a try.

I also have my topic for another video blog...

Stay tuned.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Any day now...

Next week starts the period where I should be hearing back answer, one way or the other, about my latest agent query. It's a two to three week turnaround and week two begins on Tuesday.

You try to stay motivated but you start second guessing yourself. You worry and wonder if this stuff is any good.

In the meantime I have been punching up the language and tone.

Maybe another writer's workshop is what I need. Get more outside perspective. Get any outside perspective.

I had tried this online workshop called Urbis but most people only comment on the first chapter. Favorable comments but they only go so far.

Yeah, I will look for a workshop to join and bring my little book along with me...

Flame and Bone

When I was made from fire
Poured into the tender vessel of caution
That keeps my smoke from rising
Quickly did I discover that apart from crisp drizzles or falling snow
The world chilled my touched
Walking the narrow cornered gap between girders and cut stone
One learns to tuck his shoulders in or risk
Jostling a neighbor passing by rapt with want
For a clear path without the distraction
Of another man's boiling eyes
The tip of a finger
That oldest of all weapons
Grown deadlier and pristine in its invention
Gathers a mote of a cinder on its bare flesh
And turns pondering how best to scratch the impious itch
Prying open the tender seam
Where the oil of thought dews
Offering a new wick to ignite
Squirming alive as a salamander of mischief
That yearns for a taste of air it is so ready to devour
The steam of breath betrays me
Before the glint of orange spreads
In popping bright waves
Eroding the fibers feeding it
Leaving naught but ash
As my shell of quietude falls away