The Lucky Lad
adventures in dysthymia
Saturday, March 08, 2014
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
gibberish by Stephen Brooke at 3:01 PM
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
“...talented young novelists were all going to these MFA
programs and being told, 'write about what you know,' which is
brilliant advice for your first novel but it makes them helpless on
their second novel.” ~ Tom Wolfe
I suppose my first novel, the YA 'The Middle of Nowhere' was a 'what you know' story. It was very much based on a place I lived, the people I knew there. I am pleased enough still with my effort on the book but I do see it as essentially a practice piece. I learned the craft there and have been able to work more quickly and confidently on my writing since.
I do doubt that I will ever write another Young Adult, even though I have a good idea where all those kids' lives would be going over the next couple years if I chose to pen a sequel. The setting and some of the characters will, however, reappear in more ambitious adult novels. Eventually.
Indeed, the Steinhatchee area – which is essentially what the fictitious town of Ruby stands in for – has appeared in many songs and poems, as well as a handful of short stories. A big chunk of my past was spent there. I've spent enough time and done enough things in different places to pretty much write about what I know indefinitely.
But, instead, I went to a fantasy for my second novel. I felt that a complete break with the themes of the first book was in order. It also gave me more freedom to say what I wanted to say.
My third novel, the second book of 'Donzalo's Destiny,' is still officially set for release on March 1 (though it is already available for purchase). 'The Shadow of Asak' is similar in length to the first book, 'The Song of the Sword,' bringing the total for 'Destiny' to 93,000 words — so far. It truly is all one fairly lengthy novel, even if I am dividing it into 'books' for publication. There should be two or three more of similar size, bringing 'Donzalo's Destiny' up to somewhere around the 200,000 word mark.
I may get onto the next book, tentatively titled 'The Sign of the Arrow' now or I may work on another project and give Donzalo's saga a rest. At any rate, I know where the story is going so there is no problem with writer's block. Except I haven't quit decided which pairings of lovers will occur by the end.
Which, incidentally, will probably not be the end of Donzalo. There well may be more novels with him – and undoubtedly some of the other characters – showing up.
As always, the books are available both at the Arachis Press site and at our bookstore at Lulu. By the way, if you are a reviewer, contact me and I'll see about getting a free ebook to you (EPUB or PDF).
gibberish by Stephen Brooke at 4:37 PM
Monday, February 24, 2014
An Ugly Song
I will make ugly music, shriek
disharmonic diatribes into your ears.
Dance to it if you can.
Dance to it if you will.
Tomorrow is in my pocket, yes,
and every promise that lay
hidden around time's curve.
Hidden in the palm of my hand,
beneath the clumsy fingers
that reach for God and find
falling stars in the night.
Falling as far as my mind
can imagine, and no further;
we only dreamed who we were
yesterday. We were children
yesterday, singing tuneless
ugly songs to the darkness.
Did they reach the ears of God?
Stephen Brooke ©2014
gibberish by Stephen Brooke at 9:11 AM
Friday, February 21, 2014
gibberish by Stephen Brooke at 7:01 AM
Tuesday, February 18, 2014
There is a tendency among some academics to dismiss poets who write in form as mere traders in nostalgia, or, worse, reactionaries — in some sense, anti-modern. This view tends to ignore the fact that Modernism itself is over a hundred years old now and one might say they are indulging in their own form of nostalgia.*
gibberish by Stephen Brooke at 8:14 AM