Wednesday, March 17, 2010

vampires, e-books, and!

Listening to:  "The Barber's Unhappiness" by the Matches

This week in my life: I've taken a decided risk to this whole publishing business.

I've written a delightful paranormal romance about vampires. Its well received by my peers and has been downloaded almost 500 times for free. However, since it is about vampires, and the market is tremendously saturated at the moment, I doubt I'll find representation for it. It'd have to be the greatest vampire novel of all time to do that, and it does fall just short of that. (Just.)

Meanwhile, I've written and crafted a wonderfully original paranormal romance not about vampires, or werewolves, or witches, or ghosts, entitled Switched. I think its set. Ready to go. Publishable. Magical.

Since my last major revisions, I haven't sent it out to agents. This is because I've decided to develop a platform. 

Basically, my vampire novel will end up being a throwaway novel (despite being very good), with hopes of maybe trying to get it published 10-15 years down the road. In the meantime, I can use it to establish a name for myself and develop a fanbase. 

If I'm very successful, it might help me land an agent (note: this is a slim chance.) If I'm only minutely successful, it'll helpful for WHEN I do find an agent and get a book published. In the long run, having fans will definately lead to more success.

With the advent of Kindle, having a low priced e-book in a popular genre should be beneficial. I'm not saying spectacular, but helpful.

For further reading about my inspiration for this plot, see: Elisa Lorello.

I'm not saying I'll be a slamdunk success. 

But what I am saying, is that in 6-8 weeks when my book appears on for a low, low e-book price that's perfect for reading on your Kindle, smart phones, e-readers, home/work computer, and laptops, I'll be plugging the hell out of it.

And I do mean the hell out of it. I'll be begging and pleading for ever single person I've ever met to buy a copy. ("person I've met" will be defined as people whose names I've seen on the internet as well as physically met.) Its pennies a page, really! (I think $1.19 is the cheapest I can go, but I'll see when things go live.) 

Word of mouth can make or break this, and I'm hoping to make it.

Meanwhile, I'll continue working on  my other books, reading graphic novels, watching John Hughes movies, planning a baby shower, and loving you. 

Thursday, March 11, 2010

things I don't understand

I don't understand people who want to be writers. I don't mean people who write and want to be writers, I mean folks who say, "I would love to write a novel." Or "I wish I could write." The urge to write when you don't you actually have to the urge to write.

I guess its because, to me, it seems so simple. As long as you're literate, you can write. Not well, probably. But if you've had a 3rd eduation, you enough of the building blocks where you can go from there. So, once you're past 3rd grade, if you want to write, what's stopping you?

But more than that, I don't know why anybody who doesn't write would want to. I mean, I write. A lot. And I enjoy it. A whole lot. But I don't play football because I don't enjoy football. If I did, I would. I watch a lot of movies, play video games, and read/write a lot. I enjoy these activities so I do them. So I'm assuming, that if you enjoyed writing, you would write. And you don't.

And it's a hard, thankless job. Newsflash: Nobody wants to read your unpublished manuscript. A few friends and family might, but nobody else cares. It's hard enough getting people to read published books. And let me tell you, getting published is really really hard. Writing the book is the easiest part, by far. 

There's no fame or glory in writing.  It's like when somebody says, "I'd like to write," they might as well say, "I'd like to sit in a dark room for hours at a time working my heart and soul on something that (most likely) nobody else will ever see or enjoy."

Why would you want to do it? What why would you strive that?

I do it because I love it. I like solitude, though. And unicorns and sociopaths and covers of songs from the 80's. I'm not exactly mainstream, that way.

But if I had a choice, if someone had let me pick something I would love, it wouldn't be this. That's for damn sure.

It would be exercise. Or cleaning. Or surgery. Or physics. It'd be something a lot more useful, with a lot more glory. 

And I love Danny Elfman. Love him. But if I met him, I wouldn't' say, "Oh, I've always wanted to compose." Because if I really wanted to compose, I would've figured out how. But I don't have it in me. I don't know how people make music. The idea completely confounds me. 

I don't know. I just don't understand why anyone would write anything. I don't understand why I do it, and most of the time, I wish I would stop.

But I am the happiest when I'm deeply involved in writing something. So I do it. And writing for pleasure is... amazing.

But writing with the intent of getting published is absolute hell. It really is. The editing and revisions, that I can handle. That I even enjoy. But trying to decide if I've really said anything new or exicting. Or if I'd added anything. If anyone will get excited about my concept. 

I'm driving myself mad about this whole thing. And the more I learn, the more I... I wish I could be anything but a writer.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

why the OKGO videos are so awesome

You know what I think? (I'm going to assume you do since you're here, reading this.) The answer is: They take a really simple concept and turn it into this gorgeos elaborate thing. And they do it all for real, in one camera shot. No CGI.

Yes, this has turned into another one of my CGI rants, but with Alice in Wonderland  opening this weekend (and me going to see it), I can't help but feel betrayed by Tim Burton. The new OKGO video reminds me of the magic and awesomeness that Burton introduced us at the opening of Pee Wee, so his new film only shines as an abomination of that memory.

If you haven't seen the super sweet OKGO video, here it is: (P.S. The song itself is super awesome.)

Eric, my platonic life partner, makes the claim for the new Alice by saying, "He couldn't have done those things without CGI." And to an extent, I agree. Eric keeps going on about how amazing Helena Bonham Carter (Queen of Hearts) looks, with her big head to little body ratio. And even I admit, the Cheshire Cat looks pretty awesome.

But every single time that cartoony ridiculous pig slides under the Queen's feet at the end of the preview, I cringe. I understand that Alice in Wonderland is a surrealist story and that some leeway for cartooniness is necessary.

But my point is this - what's true with Alice is just as true with OKGO. They could've done a lot more with CGI. A lot more. But it wouldn't even have been half as awesome.

When I see things like that video, or The Corpse Bride, or even Where the Wild Things Are (which has the single best use of CGI I've ever seen in a film ever - but also happens to have some of the most trite dialogue I've ever seen in a film ever), I get a sense of magic, and I see how amazing real things can be.

Maybe that's the difference. Maybe when you see real things, it makes real life seem more magical. It's like, "Wow. Things can really look like that." But when something is too cartoony or CGI, even if it looks amazing, you know its not real. It ruins the illusion.

This is why Avatar means nothing to me. This is also why Avatar offends me on so many levels.

And I am disappointed in Tim Burton because I know how great and magical he can make real life look. He looks at life in such a different unique way and portrays it so eloquently, and I loved that about him. But with this new Alice, I feel like he's lost some of the magic.

And I hate losing magic. Peter Pan is my favorite because he never grows up, he never loses his magic. And he would never use CGI.