Monday, August 16, 2010

A little news, and other things

So, the most interesting news is that Rock and Roll Over is available for pre-order on Barnes and, and on Amazon. My story, Always Crashing In the Same Car is included in it. That story is also the first chapter of that novel, so I have sort of mixed feelings about it. But this is the first thing that I have been in that I've actually been able to order for the store, so while the cover is a little, um, well.. you'll see, I still feel sort of like a real writer.
I also just sold a story to an anthology called "Fem-fangs." Yep, it's about girl vampires. It's a story that I wrote way back at Clarion, called "Getting Fixed" and I'm happy to see it out. I remember I wrote it as an example of the reverse hero's journey, and it got fairly well bashed because vampires are so over done. It was at that moment that I realized that originality was not really high on my list of things to aspire to. Have a good story, make the characters real, and I don't care what kind of tropes you use to tell it. There are, of course, really good examples of that philosophy gone horribly wrong--Twilight comes to my mind, and probably to everybody's mind for that matter. She got the concept of using a tried and true cliche to tell her story, but she forgot to make the characters real, or even a bit likable. I wonder if she even likes the characters.
In a short story it's harder to give characters lives. you don't have the time. The thing to do is give the impression of movement. The character is going somewhere as the story starts, will be going somewhere after it ends. Charles DeLint does this by telling serial short stories. Read even one in the Newford series and you get a sense of the place and the people.
Anyway, I don't mean to knock Twilight. I'm guessing that there's other reasons why those books have become popular. I'm just glad that, in my case, somebody got the joke, and that story was finally taken.

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