The messy process of writing a book: outtake

Some of you are aware that lately I have been editing a science fiction novel.  There has been some drama about that during the past two weeks and also some progress.

The drama is not nearly as drastic – thank God/ess, as the action along the plot line of the novel itself.

At the moment, the interstellar mercenary order has switched back from being called the Black Hawks to what I called them 20 years ago now: the Children of Loki.  They are nothing like the mythological children of that Norse rascal-god Loki we have seen in the recent Thor movies, but, while I don’t like evil, I am impressed by a great mage and given the reality of my culture, I like that he used cleverness to solve problems when straight forward methods might not work.  I like what Loki was like before he ‘went bad’ and still wonder whether the painful truth is that he went that evil or whether it was like when we see whoever is the American President done up as a demon or as Hitler which I have seen on Facebook about both George Bush Jr. and President Obama, so being Democrat or Republican doesn’t prevent the propagandization of criticism of the President.  Obviously the Thor movies do follow the line that the myths presented that Loki went pretty much nuts and evil.  While he does make a good movie villain, it’s too bad.

The Children of Loki mercenary order is not an agent of evil, but it is a rough and dirty type of situation where good manages to triumph over evil but how so, gets nastier than most civilized people would prefer.

Updates from a village October 2013

As an author, I can tell you all that I edited more on the science fiction novel intended to be the first in a series starring the same Gezka FaucMerz and Kiel Bronson.  I had thought the whole series would be about their mercenary order – called The Children of Loki, or just Loki’s Children.  It was a name Kiel and Gezka could actually agree to, which is a pretty big deal.

As a middle aged woman I can tell you that I did yard work today.

As a human living in a rural location I can tell you that today, none of the local farm animals or other pets let me pet them.  I don’t always try, but do find it gratifying when a local horse, or goat or sheep, let alone the usual cats and dogs, let me pet them.  Like so many of you, I have not mistressed (try the feminine of master for reasons other than extramarital infidelity) getting wild animals to let me pet them.  I would like to, but so far it has remained a mere aspiration.

When to give up and when to not give up, and what to do if you don’t

Like so many authors, I have made a number of efforts to have my work picked up by mainstream paying publishers.  Like most people who find it necessary to be flexible, I have done a bunch of contract writing for projects other than just novels.  It was not what I had really intended to have happen, but it did. 

Well, in truth I seem to have been wrong in many of my predictions about my own life, which is unfortunate since I was blessed with having actually had some goals and plans for my adult life.  I left some ‘wiggle room’ but had not intended to be confronted by some of the challenges I have faced.

One of the recent challenges is this:  I wrote a novel and have submitted it to over 40 publishers.  I have also sent it out to a few agents.  Searching for an agent is frustrating, but what I heard is that agents get people deals with big mainstream publishing companies and help the author not just get ruthlessly exploited by a famous respectable company instead of being exploited by a small company or by not even being able to be exploited.  [Retro style Silicon Valley girl tone] “That’s like how bad the industry really is.”

A corporation that works in publishing without a great reputation has offered me an exploitative contract.  I’m not sure whether or not to just take my marbles and go home, and decide whether to re-edit the novel or to just throw it out in the trash like the consequences of an old hobby…When I wrote it people probably just didn’t think of me, or thought I was avoiding getting a job or just making a mistake because I thought I was actually acting self-employed by writing a novel that I intended to earn money from selling even though I actually enjoyed the work of writing it. 

Those are pretty much the options.  I think a lot of artists and other professionals would understand the basic situation.  Do I need to go ahead and try something that may work for me or might make me fail but with the additional experience of having made another effort to be effective?  Should I just give up on that novel and leave it at that?  Do I just need to edit and and then continue to try to get a good agent and/or a fair contract from some publishing company that doesn’t have an agent?  This is the situation.

If you like to try things and have a Kindle or don’t mind a wild rough copy, you can get a copy of this novel as it is now.  Here’s how: