Tag Archive for wounded gods

NaNoWriMoreThanLikely

Next month is National Novel Writing Month (aka NaNoWriMo), and I’ve been conned persuaded to try it again.

The idea is to write 50,000 words of a new novel. No continuing something that’s already been done, no rewriting an older piece. Outlining ahead of time is okay. I’ve tried it a few times in the past, but November’s always been a rough month schedule-wise and I never managed to pull it off.

Things are a bit different this year, though. For starters, I’ve got several friends (including most of the folks attached to Evileye Books) who are going to take a crack at it, so there will be a little more competition and encouragement going around. I’m also coming into the high of Winter Kill‘s imminent release and I’m feeling the creative rush of preparing for my next projects, both for The Pack and for other works. Finally, it’s high time I brought another novel to market.

Powerless is… languishing. Maybe it’s been sitting in the brain too long, but I’ve had a tough time getting up the energy to get back to it. I’ve also lost all confidence that it’s any good, but I suspect that’s a subjective opinion. I’m not ready to call it dead, but given it’s not eligible for NaNoWriMo anyway, I’m going to move on for now.

I’ve got two candidates for NaNoWriMo: Wounded Gods and Sick Day.

Wounded Gods may sound familiar to long-time readers, as I first developed it as a comic. After kicking it around a while, I realized it could easily be a prose novel, and the only reason I pitched it as a comic in the first place is I was trying to continue off the launch of Werewolves: Call of the Wild. It’s set in the Vietnam War and focuses on the conflict between a couple of soldiers and includes a supernatural element.

Sick Day is an idea that hit me over the summer as I read a few crime/thriller novels. I bounced the idea off a friend who digs on that sort of thing, and he gave it two thumbs up. This would be a straight-up thriller, possibly in the vein of what I was doing with Muy Mal and including a hint of the supernatural. Hell, maybe I’ll even set it in Port Ransom.

The advantage of Wounded Gods is it’s already plotted. I wrote a first-issue script and outlined the remainder of the mini-series, so it wouldn’t be tough to start fresh with prose and cruise along. Sick Day is still little more than a general idea, but given the concept, it could be a lot of fun to write. Decisions, decisions…

I’ve got two weeks to figure it out, and maybe to take some more notes. I also have an OGN script to deliver and a book to proof. Best get crackin’.

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

Writing: Moving Right Along

It’s been a slow summer for my writing, but there are a few odds and ends worth reporting.

First, for those of you not already aware, Brimstone Turnpike is finally available. For the first time, my name graces the front page of Cemetery Dance‘s website. Bask in the glory while you can. If you’ve ordered from Amazon, however, I have bad news: I was just told Amazon is emailing people and saying the book won’t be available until January. I’m guessing there’s some marketing or distribution snafu in there somewhere, but the book is coming.

Second, CD has released the table of contents for In Laymon’s Terms, the long-awaited tribute anthology to Richard Laymon. In a newsletter distributed today, CD says “At this point, all of the signature sheets for In Laymon’s Terms have been signed (by around 50+ contributors!) and the interior of the book has been proofread several times. We’re waiting on one last contribution from one of the editors and then it’ll be ready to go to the printer!” With luck that means we’ll see it sooner rather than later.

Some of you may have noticed the page link for Wounded Gods has gone poof. This is because the WG title will now be used as the title for a different project under development with a new publisher. Discussions with that publisher got me thinking about the original premise, and I’m thinking that story may work better as a prose piece. It will be shelved for the moment and get a new title when I get back to it.

On a related note, there are developments for Call of the Wild and a third comics project, but it’s way too early to announce anything yet. Stay tuned. Unfortunately, I can tell you that those of you who were waiting for the trade on the Moonstone run of Call of the Wild are going to be out of luck, as there are no plans to do a trade at this time. I will try to have copies available at conventions where I have a table (such as this weekend’s Archon near St Louis), and you may also find it in the boxes at conventions where Moonstone has a booth.

Regarding my novels, work on Powerless continues. I haven’t touched it in a while due to the comics commitments, but I still want to get this baby out there. I will be sending it to my German-language publisher, Otherworld Verlag, as soon as possible, and then I will start submitting it to both mass market and small press houses in the US. I think this one’s a worthy successor to Deadliest of the Species in a way the other two completed (I use that term loosely) novels weren’t, and it’s about time I got a novel back on the market.

Meanwhile, the status of the top secret book I announced sometime back is undetermined. Writing on the novella for the book is on hold for the time being. Best case scenario is this book will be very late. Worst case is it will be canceled, but I feel it will be picked up by another publisher.

Then there’s Muy Mal. Wow, have I dropped the ball on that one. However, given it doesn’t pay the bills and wasn’t showing any future ability to do so, these other projects just had to supercede it. At this point I don’t know what’s in store for the future. I suppose it’s time to speak to John and Weston to see what, if anything, we’re going to do with it.

Hmm. I was feeling pretty good when I started this, but then it’s all non-news and bad news. I can even see a few of you coming to lynch me right now. I think a distraction is in order.

Look! A booth babe!

Can you tell me more about the boobies -- er, movie?

Can you tell me more about your boobies -- er, the movie?

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

Productivity Update

I get asked once or twice a week how things are going with my writing, and given it’s been a while since I’ve talked about things here, I thought I’d save a few emails this week. These are the most active and/or most asked about projects.

POWERLESS

I’m proofreading the existing material, which is about eight chapters long. There’s a lot of clean-up to be done, but not as many changes as I feared. About a thousand words will be excised completely, and then I’ll fill a gap back in and continue on with the rest of the book. I’m pondering a prologue as well.

The good news here is I have a publisher eager to see it. The bad news is it’s my German publisher, so my English-reading fans may have to wait a while. The middle news is I’ve got a project in the works with a US small press and, once things settle, he may be willing to take a look Powerless. That other project is still under wraps for the time being.

TO CONFRONT THE ENEMY/TO RISE FROM THE ASHES

The first draft of To Confront the Enemy is finished and one of my early readers responded with positive marks. To Rise from the Ashes is plotted but has not been started. Both are novella-length and I do have a publisher I want to send a complete package to. However, these have been back-burnered because I need to finish Top Secret Novella for the small press publisher mentioned above.

TOP SECRET NOVELLA

There’s not much I can tell you at this point, other than it needs to be finished before the Top Secret Book it is part of can be published. The publisher’s working through a few things which buys me some time (which is fortunate for my schedule), but I don’t want to keep him hanging much longer. This should have been done a long time ago.

MUY MAL

Poor, neglected Muy Mal. The sad fact is the pay projects have to be a priority, especially with at least one of those projects already under contract. No way I’ll finish by our June suspension date, but I’ll just leave it open until I can get the story of Troy and Delilah finished.

WEREWOLVES: CALL OF THE WILD

There are currently no plans to continue Call of the Wild in its current form, much as I would like to. I’ve been invited to contribute stories about the characters (including a few you haven’t met yet) in anthologies, but it’s just not feasible to continue the series. I’m feeling a lot of possibilities for the characters, though, and I have at least three more arcs in mind, so I’ve talked to someone about another possibility. Stay tuned for updates.

WOUNDED GODS

Wounded Gods is, in a sense, sold. It has a 90% chance of seeing print, though not quite in the same format originally intended. Unfortunately there’s not a lot I can tell you at this point, but there’s definite interest from a third party in seeing this sucker in print. As with Call of the Wild, stay tuned.

OTHER COMICS WORK

Another common question is “when is your next comic coming out?” Good question. I’ve got yet another project in the deep planning stages, and there’s interest in it as well. I’m glad to see a lot of people enjoyed Call of the Wild enough to keep chasing my work, but at the moment there’s not a lot to report.

OTHER PROSE WORK

As I type this, I was invited to contribute a short story to an anthology. I’m sure I’ll be taking the editor up on their invitation, but at the moment I’m exhausted and will crash out when this post is posted.

OVERDUE BOOKS

Yes, both In Laymon’s Terms and Brimstone Turnpike are very, very late. No, I don’t have any idea when they’ll actually see print.

SHORT STORY COLLECTION

It is to laugh. I’m flattered at the thought, but honestly, I’m not sure enough of my back catalog warrants a collection. I’d probably want to write all new stuff – or at least half new stuff – and I just don’t have the time to make that commitment right now. The closest to this will be the reprinting of “To Fight With Monsters” and To Travel Among Men with the aforementioned To Confront the Enemy and To Rise from the Ashes.

I think that about covers it. As always, thanks for the interest, it’s greatly appreciated it. Now I just need to get my sorry ass to work and live up to some of the expectations.

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

2008: The Year to Come

It’s been an interesting start to the year already, but there’s a lot on the horizon.

For starters, Muy Mal is officially back, complete with a rockin’ new look provided by Russ Dickerson. John and Weston have already posted their first contributions and mine won’t be far behind. I’ll be wrapping up Down Vendetta Road and sometime this Spring I’ll tackle the next volume of Bastard Precinct. Our plan is to tie up all the loose ends on the site by June.

As I mentioned yesterday, I’ve got two book releases due. The German edition of Deadliest of the Species, Das Tödliche Geschlecht, will be released soon, and I’m writing a novella to go on the back of a second book that I’ll be able to announce soon.

I’ve signed the signature sheets for both In Laymon’s Terms and Brimstone Turnpike, so we should finally see them on the market. It’s been so long for both of them that I’m a little worried they will no longer be representative of my current writing style (especially In Laymon’s Terms), but that’s just part of the business. I dug around, and it turns out I was hoping to see the release of both books at least three years ago. Argh. ILT contains a short story and Brimstone has a novella.

I actually made progress on the To Fight With Monsters front, completing To Confront the Enemy over the fall. To Rise from the Ashes is next, and the whole package will go to a publisher as soon as possible.

There’s a spark of interest in Powerless, which I’ve decided will be my next novel. I’ve written two other novels since Deadliest, but I’m really not happy with either and they’d just about have to be rewritten from the ground up. Given I’m more excited about Powerless and it needs the same amount of work, I may as well pour my concentration into it. At the moment, all I’ve written on it so far is printed and waiting for me to edit and reintroduce myself to. There’s at least one chapter that will be excised, one that will be chopped in half, and then I need to tweak the location and geography throughout.

Last week I sat down with a publisher and discussed several things. It’s too early to announce anything, but we had a great conversation and we’ll be getting together again soon. Our conversation includes Wounded Gods and at least one other project which I’ll slap with the working title The Shattered Man. I’m excited about the direction we’re headed in, and if it continues I’ll be talking a lot more about these projects soon.

That’s only the projects already lined up, of course. The next step is to build toward the future, to put together some more sales and make sure 2009 will look as promising as 2008 does.

On a personal note, I’ll be continuing my karate training. If I work hard, I could (and should) be a purple belt by the end of the year, which is two ranks from my current blue belt. I’m also going to try to attend more kendo classes at my school, and I may even explore aikido in the fall if a local community college continues to offer it.

I’ve officially changed the Fatty post category to Fitness. I think losing 30 pounds last year has earned me that much. This year I’m setting a smaller goal to cut 20 more. When the weather warms up, I’m going to try to motivate myself to try the Couch-to-5K-Running Plan. It’s a long shot because I hate running, but I’m realizing it’s the best way to both cut weight and improve cardiovascular health. I’m trying to think of it as a good way to improve my endurance for karate class and sparring matches, too.

I’m going to try — again — to do more with my camera. I consider myself an amateur photographer at best, but I really do enjoy taking and sharing pictures. I’ve still got a lot to learn about digital post-processing, so that’s one of the areas I’ll concentrate on this year. It’s also high time I start saving up for a good DSLR camera and dump my aging, point-and-shoot PowerShot G2. If I get active enough I’ll start a Photography category on this blog.

That about covers it. I’d say it’s more than enough to keep me busy this year, too.

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.