It’s all in your head, you just have no idea how big your head is.
– Lon Milo Duquette
I got the current draft of SYTI off to my beta readers early in May and have done a pretty good job of pushing it out of my mind while I wait (patiently – other people have lives of their own) for them to get back to me.
The hunt for an agent continues with OS.
I wrote the first chunk of a collaborative novella I’m writing with Marlee Jane Ward, who’s brilliant Orphancorp series is well-worth a look if you’ve not taken my suggestion to read it before now. I don’t want to go into too much detail about the project yet because it’s early, but I’m excited to see how it develops. Part of the impetus for wanting to write it is that Marlee has struggled to write since the pandemic (and the isolation of Melbourne’s lockdowns), but when she does write her work is as brilliant as ever. I’m hoping that a collaborative project will help her get back on the horse, and I just want to see what comes from our combined styles, foci, obsessions, experiences, etc. I’m hoping we might have a first draft by the end of the year, but I’m also going to sit back and let Marlee take the time she needs.
I’ve started planning work on two projects that could both be short comic series (my understanding is that anything longer than 4 or so issues is unlikely to get picked up unless you’re a known quantity, plus I don’t want to bite off more than I can chew). One would be comedic, in the same vein as an old collab project, the other would be a synthesis of Killing Gravity and Repo Virtual in some ways. I’ve been writing notes on this project for a couple of months now, and that comparison only occurred to me today. In some ways I worry, but it’s a different story, different world, different medium, it’s just that I’ll also be treading some familiar ground. It’s odd what we find ourselves drawn to again and again.
My contributor copy of Phase Change arrived and it looks/feels great. The contents are pretty amazing too.
Buddies without Organs
We’re currently on a MH hiatus. I won’t say more now except that I hope we’ll be back to it soon. Working on this podcast with Sean and Matt has been a real highlight of the past year or so for me.
Nothing Here Newsletter
- [BONUS] The Farm – MJW – issue 178 – 8th May, 2022 – A sneak peek at a new autofiction project from Marlee.
- nothing here but carbon bombs – issue 179 – 15th May, 2022
- nothing here but scorpion inattention – issue 180 – 29th May, 2022
And all the rest
There’s some people I really respect who spend a lot of time on twitter actively promoting the work of other people – finding and boosting great works in the SFFH space, while keeping their own self-promotion to a minimum. It’s not something I can really do – I struggle to read new books in a timely manner (I pre-ordered Cassandra Khaw’s latest and still haven’t cracked it open eight months later) – but I do make an effort to give detailed feedback on manuscripts for people in my close circle/s. I don’t know how much reach I would have in terms of promotion, but I feel confident in my ability to pick out the issues with a book and be able to advise people on ways to address them. And also why those issues are issues – why and when some writing rules are necessary and why and when others can be disregarded – because sometimes a concept/rule/guideline won’t click until it’s been explained.
Also, I finished reading Peter Watts’ Freeze-Frame Revolution the other day which is, unsurprisingly, brilliant. I wish I’d picked up Blindsight the first time I’d heard it mentioned as Watts has quickly become one of my favourite authors working today (and possibly that last caveat isn’t even required). He has a number of short stories as well as 4 entire novels available to read for free on his website.
I think that will do for now. Pretend I said something hopeful and gently encouraging here, because we could all do with a bit of that these days, couldn’t we?