Musings in the Dark: Mania and the Nightingales


Mania and the Nightingales

My yearly cycle certainly is maintaining itself.  I’ve been busy in the way that matters most to me: creatively.  Academic business is an aspect of this, as when I can write creatively, I can also write academically.  This is a good thing, as May draws closer, so does graduation.  But I’m not here to talk about school shit, as it’s boring.  Within the past three weeks, I drafted the first Nightingales book, CRASH!!! and am currently drafting the second, cool air.  In doing this, I was inspired to create a blog to supplement the series.  I’m keeping it private for now, and it won’t be ready for consumption until CRASH!!! is published later this year.

Seen here:  A possible cover
If you’ll recall, the origins of the Nightingales came as the result of a challenge produced At the Bar over a year ago.  The idea stalled for a while and then I got distracted with Tainted and Blade Dancer.  Once Tainted was published, I returned to Nightingales.  Noob, who is an essential and beloved part of my creative network, has been helping to craft the story, which is planned to be a six-book series. 

Jo, Neveyah, Cress, Lee-Lee & Monica have all been fleshed out, which helped to develop the supernatural aspect of the story.  You may or may not recall that Cressida’s loft apartment is haunted and these women come together to figure out why.  Nightingales represents my first effort at telling a story with a strong supernatural angle, and the way it is being done is ambitious by my standards.  Each book is supposed to represent an hour-long TV episode, so each book will be sixty pages.

This is very ambitious for me because I have a hard time writing anything less than sixty pages.  Shit, the Shorties aren't short by those standards.  Crafting a novel allows a certain freedom, and this freedom will not be had in regards to the Nightingales books.  Anything not necessary to the plot will be jettisoned and maybe added to the blog if I think it’s relevant to the story as a whole.  In order to do this properly, I’m writing the first three books as one long story and will break it up accordingly to maintain continuity.  We’ll see if I’m successful.

I should also add that in addition to drafting the books, I found myself writing an "outtake" centered on Jocasta's & Mitch's relationship (told y'all I was manic).  You won't find any of it in the actual books, but what it has allowed me to do is explore is some necessary backstory crucial for understanding their characters' motivations in the books.  The "outtake" is currently 88 pages and counting; a novella in and of itself.  I may be convinced to post it as a series of Shorties, but we'll see.

Pictured:  Another possible cover
The first book, (the pilot, as it were) in the series, CRASH!!!, is tentatively scheduled to be published this fall.  The second and third books (episodes 1 & 2), cool air, and Whispers will be published in 2014.  As of now, there isn’t any information available for the second half of the series.

On another creative note, I’ve also decided to revise the first half of Blade Dancer.  It sets back my planned release date, but considering the scope of this project, rewriting the first half of the book is the best decision.  The muse came out of nowhere with this little nugget, and as you know, I always listen to her.  And as you well know, Sheila & K’avir are very important to me.  With the way the story is written currently, you only get to spend half of the time on Kedavinar, K’avir’s home planet, and I found that unacceptable.  Kedavinar is a beautiful, wonderful world that deserves center stage and I’ve got to rewrite the first half to accommodate it.  It also serves to wrest Sheila and K’avir completely away from their fanfic origins, which is essential.  Similar to Nightingales, I created a blog for the Velimir novels and for the same purposes.  It won’t be made public until Blade Dancer is published.

To close, I anticipate having a lot more time to devote to my creative efforts once I have my terminal degree in hand.  Of course, there’s the anticipation of relocating abroad or at least to another part of the country and that will eat a lot of my suddenly-found free time.  But since my most creative months are February through July, I’m going to make the most of it.

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