Sunday September 26th, 2010

The exercise:

One month away from my birthday, the prompt shall be: publication.

I have to admit that a 26 degree day this late in the year is quite nice, thank you very much.


A book arrived in the mail this week that I've been anxiously awaiting for some time now. To the point that I had to take a picture of it shortly after opening the package:

Paddytum originally began on Protagonize, though it was taken down shortly after Tricia found someone willing to publish it (I assume this was very easy, seeing as any fool ought to have been jumping at the chance to publish something so brilliant). I'd told her on a couple of occasions that I felt guilty about reading her writing for free, so when I finally had a chance to pay for it I didn't hesitate.

I'm 100 pages in already, though the majority of that was the part of the story I'd already read on Protag. I'm going to attempt to slow down a bit, as I hate rushing through a book - I just get sad at the end that it's over so soon.

Anyway, I don't need to get anywhere near finished to recommend this book to anyone and everyone. Tricia is a fantastic writer and it gives me so much joy to own a book with her name on it. I'm sure many more will follow, and I plan to get them all.


Greg said...

Wow, I didn't realise that Tricia has put so much of it up on Protagonize -- I only remember seeing the first three chapters or so of it. You're right though, she well deserves to be published! I shouldn't worry about rushing through it though, you can always re-read it. And sometimes the second reading is better, because you can appreciate the structure better.

Oh, and it's nice to read an editorial by you again, it's been a while!


There was silence in the chambers of the Council of Evil. Dr. Septopus was wearing pince-nez glasses with gold rims and stroking a nervous Persian while reading a technical paper and Sylvestra was grading third-graders homework. Her latest evil plan was to educate children that evil was worthwhile, and to this end she had killed and replaced a schoolteacher.
Dr Septopus clucked, and Sylvestra looked up. She had been wondering for a while now if he'd lay eggs if he got sufficiently agitated.
"Sylly -- Sylvestra," he quickly corrected himself, wondering how the Green Lightbulb's stupid nickname for her could be quite so easy to use, "do you remember Green's pumpkin?"
"Pumpking," she corrected. "He said it was a royal pumpkin."
"Yes, well, you remember we made him destroy it and promise never to speak of it again?"
Sylvestra nodded, wondering where this was going.
"He's submitted a paper on it to the Journal of Pure and Applied Evil."
"He has? How dare he! I've never been published there, and I've done much more publication-worthy crimes! I-- wait, how do you know?"
Dr. Septopus looked as embarrassed as his beak would allow and squeezed the Persian a little harder.
"I'm... sort of on the... editorial committee--" he said, and Sylvestra erupted.
"There's a single editor!" she screamed. "It was you! You've rejected all of my papers to that journal for the last year and a half! I thought that last rejection was strange, where it said I was too ugly to have committed the crime I was describing!"
"I was running out of ideas--"
Sylvestra's scream shattered light-bulbs recessed in the ceiling and Dr. Septopus cringed, regretting his decision to publish a journal.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this, Marc. I hope you're enjoying the non-cyber version. I blame you, you know. I'd probably never have sent it to a publisher if you (in particular) hadn't made such a big deal of it. It was just a bit of fun, y'know? Never thought for a minute there was a REAL story behind that damn bear talking to the silly man.

I only ever reached eight chapters on Protag, Greg. (They became chapters 1-7 in the actual book, though, as I merged two of the original chapters after I rewrote them - and added another thirty chapters and an epilogue!) I think the reason I never finished it on Protagonize was that there was so much praise for what was there so far and anticipation about the rest that I was kind of afraid that the next chapter I wrote would be the one everyone hated, and that everyone would realise I'm not that good after all. Possibly, also, I was reluctant to post any more on there in case it *was* a story worth publishing 'properly' and that it would spoil my chances if it was online.

I'm pleased with the story I ended up with, though. And I'm very grateful for all the support everyone threw my way. I'm still gobsmacked that people are paying to read something I wrote (especially people like Marc and the other peeps from across the Atlantic, who had to pay an awful lot for shipping.)

Zhongming said...

Hey Marc - My bad, sorry for the "missing in action" But hey i am back with more confidence to write, maybe i should have just jump right into whatever i fear the most.. Anyway thanks to your blog that i have a place to fall back on!

Wow, if you haven't yet mention Tricia i guess i won't ever read about her. I see that she has some real nice work out there in protagonize, just like you! If you or any of the bloggers here were to publish any of your work, i guess it won't be long before i get my hands on them!


I should have write it all the way without stopping for a single day.

I am glad to be back with more confidence and ready to accept all kinds of comments.

It's a new life! It's almost like in different level. The intensity once dropped to the ground was found again!

I began to see new exciting path ahead of me. Like writing a novel and publish it. And that the novel will have it's own space in one of the self-help section and adore by many future generation for it's beautiful and meaningful work by me. That's my dream :)

Heather said...

Marc- I actually put this book on my Christmas list without actually knowing when it would be released! Everyone had so many positive things to say about it on Protag. It's nice to hear your glowing review.

The screen door banged against her calf as she tapped her foot impatiently. I looked at the small girl in her plaid skirt and fall jacket over the clipboard I had been using for the past several minutes. She pulled on her braid and tried to smile sweetly, but I could see the fatigue. I returned her smile, feeling fatigued myself, before returning to the long list of publications for sale. Releasing the girl with my selection to her waiting mother on the sidewalk, I sighed at the loss of school ice cream and cookie fundraisers.

Marc said...

Greg - the nervous Persian was a great addition to that scene :)

Tasha - not a problem at all. And I wouldn't be much of a friend if I balked at paying a bit extra for shipping :)

Zhongming - no worries, I'm just glad to see you back! And that's a very noble dream - I hope you manage to achieve it :)

Heather - I'm 100% positive you'll enjoy it when you do get it. And... ugh, I remember selling magazine subscriptions. Worst fundraising idea ever.