I said a while back that I don't really write fiction. I used to. I wrote my own stories as a teenager, but I think every teenaged geek did that. I had discovered Zelazny in my early teens and while I could eventually mimic the superficial characteristics of his prose, I lacked his imagination and his depth and breadth of knowledge, and now that I look back at the stories I had written back then from the vantage point of adulthood, I see them for the fan-fictiony knock-offs that they always were. Also, I'm trained as a technical writer (and I even find work as one once in a while), and the skill set involved with that tend to be incompatible with writing fiction. So I drifted away from it, and satisfied my need to write with this blog, which is a strange combination of a weird Roger Zelazny shrine and family stories.
I didn't think anything
could ever move me to write fiction again. However, I saw the call for
stories for submissions for sequels to A Night in the Lonesome October
in Lovecraftzine, which I've long felt is the story written by Zelazny that most deserved the anthology treatment.
you'll excuse the digression for a moment, my grandfather died in 2000.
I loved him more than almost anyone in the world. I was a painfully shy
kid and that endured well into adulthood. I had a chance to speak at
his funeral and I was petrified at the thought of speaking in front of
so many people. But I knew if I didn't, that I would regret it for the
rest of my life.
So, I put together a list of the things I loved
and admired about him and when the time came, I got up and said them.
And I never had a problem speaking in public again. I call myself an
atheist, but I also call that his final gift to me.
And likewise, with
the October sequel, I didn't know if I would have a good idea or if I
could express it, but I knew that I had to try. I knew this would be my final chance to write
this story (this was before Mike Davis announced that this would be an
annual event), so I screwed my courage to the sticking place, did my
best and sent it off.
And here we are. And well, you're probably reading this because the story was published. (If not, here's the link!)
You can read it on the web or buy an issue for a buck on your Kindle or
Nook. Buy it today! Support your local starving artists!
particularly like the art they used for my story. I had no idea that
that there would be art and certainly nothing that good. I'm always a
sucker for cover art that actually reflects the source material, and I
would have loved this piece even if it had nothing to do with me.
Likewise, I didn't know there would be an mp3 version of the story. I
love audiobooks! (And they even pronounced my name correctly, which is
something that very rarely happens in real life.)
If I ever do go on to write more fiction, this will be one of the two events that moved me. Lovecraftzine actually pays its writers. The fact that it's
any amount at all tells me, hey, maybe my writing is good enough that
people want to read it!
The other thing, and the one that is
more important to me, is that I was reading a story I had written for my
daughter to her and she was bouncing up and down on the couch and beaming throughout it, and when I got to the end she said "I could see it all happening in my mind!"
So, check out Lonesome October. Check out my story and all the others! I'm happy with it and I hope you will be too.