Book Launch, a Bookversary, and NaNoWriMo
Today, Hidden Agendas, the sequel to Who Watches the Watchmen?, launched. Yeah, it’s rather lost in the hoopla over National Novel Writing Month, but I wanted it out before the first anniversary of last year’s election.
These two novelettes aren’t exactly historical fiction but more current events or… How about “current political thrillers”? That works.
Both novelettes were certainly cathartic for me to write, and I hope they are for the readers, too.
If you’d like to take a look, go to my Amazon Author Page, and you’ll find them there.
Celebrating The Yellow Scarf
The Yellow Scarf was one of my first novellas, and Facebook just reminded me it came out two years ago.
This novella started out as a 5,000 – 6,000 word short story, which I workshopped at Tinker Mountain Writers Workshop. My fellow writers in the workshop and its instructor, Edgar-Nominated Laura Benedict, suggested that it needed more backstory, that perhaps it was too much of a story for a short story.
Armed with their suggestions, I added the backstory, beefed up a character, inserted the imagery of a yellow scarf throughout, and extended the story over the period of a year. The result? A novella based on real events in the Balkan Civil Wars. It’s a story I’m particularly proud of and am glad it’s out in the world.
To celebrate its second birthday, The Yellow Scarf will be on sale for 99 cents Friday only. Again, go to my Amazon Author page (link above) to have a look and buy a copy if you like.
It’s NaNoWriMo Time!
It’s the mad month of November where several hundred thousand people around the world write a 50,000-word novel rough draft in 30 days. Crazy, right? But we’re writers, so it’s expected.
I guess you could say the novelettes, Who Watches the Watchmen? and Hidden Agendas are prequels to this year’s project, A Squalid Procession of Vain Fools. Again, this will be a current events political thriller with some family angst mixed in, just to make it interesting.
This will be my 10th NaNoWriMo, and this year I’m a co-municipal liaison for the Shenandoah Valley region. My municipal liaison and I have lots of online and in-person events planned, and if you’re local to Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley, come join us. Check out our Facebook page, Shenandoah Valley Wrimos, for times and places.
I kicked us off last night right at midnight with an online write-in, and, boy, I was up way past my bed time! But it’s great fun with great writers.
I’ll also be occasionally posting about my project here, including some (unedited) excerpts, but if you follow me on Instagram (@paduncan1), you’ll see some NaNoWriMo-related graphics along with my other posts.
If you’ve never tried NaNoWriMo, give it a go. No pressure. Well, there is pressure: 50,000 words in 30 days, but for a type A personality like me, bring it on!
Story Cube Challenge Week 10
This was the hardest one yet, mostly because that damned pyramid showed up again, and I was at a loss how to account for it. Somehow, I managed it.
I’ve studied and written a lot about the Balkan Wars of the 1990’s and especially about the horrors of “ethnic cleansing.” It took me some time to get inspired by this week’s roll of the cubes, but once I thought about the digging image, the story came to me.
Here’s this week’s challenge:
From left to right, here’s what I saw: key; peeking/spying/binoculars; digging/foxhole; alien; giving a present; pyramid; thinking; knocking on a door; eating.
Here’s the story, “Yea, Though I Walk,” and just a note about a little alteration on the web site. I changed the Story Cube Challenge tab above to Spy Flash, which is the title of the manuscript I’m compiling with these stories. So, if you don’t see the link on the title, then hover your cursor over “Spy Flash” and select “Yea, Though I Walk” from the drop-down menu.
Choose the Cover of My New eBook!
I initially intended to transcribe my collection of short stories published in print in 2000 (Rarely Well Behaved) and re-issue it as an eBook, but, of course, I had to tweak. I refreshed all the the stories and merged a couple of them into a novella length work and handed the file off to my proofreader. She had a wonderful idea–split the book up into two or more eBooks by type of story.
The result is Fences, which includes the literary short stories and some sci-fi/spec-fi/magical realism stories (See the cover in the right sidebar under “Update About the Update.”), and Blood Vengeance, which includes the espionage/thriller/suspense stories. The cover forFences is pretty logical and set, but I need a little help in deciding on a cover for Blood Vengeance.
Two of the stories in that volume involve the war in the Balkans in the 1990’s. The title story and another entitled “Giving the Dead Back Their Names” deal with the aftermath of ethnic cleansing events there. The latter story involves the forensic identification of the remains of the massacre at Srebrenica. The title story involves getting revenge for a massacre of men and boys in a small village.
Take a look at the possibilities below and leave a comment about which you prefer, or you can just leave the comment “Skull” or “Coffins,” per the captions, and I’ll know which one you mean. I’ll put all the names of commenters in a hat and let one of my grandkids pick a name to receive a signed postcard of one of my Friday Fictioneers’ stories. You have until April 22 to choose.
I know which one I’m leaning toward, but I think it will be fun to get some additional input. Thanks for helping out!