Stories, Novels, Ideas, and Music
I’ve loved Fantasy ever since, in the fifth grade, I stumbled on a charming little book in San Diego’s Pacific Beach library: The Thirteenth is Magic by Joan Howard. A few years later, I also fell in love with Science Fiction when I read Time is the Simplest Thing, by Clifford D. Simak and Zenna Henderson’s tales of the People. That’s when the trouble began, and I have to admit that it continues even now.
But I didn’t begin trying to contribute to either genre until, at the tender age of 50, I felt I had something to say. Still, I long intended to write someday. Meanwhile I pursued my career as a musician, composer, and eventually taught guitar, keyboard, voice, and various related skills. Having gained some praise for my writing in High School, it seemed to me that writing fiction would be fairly easy, and I sure had a surplus of ideas. To say that I was wrong about the “fairly easy” part would be a serious understatement.
Decades before I wrote my first attempt at a novel, I asked myself a simple question: what sort of book would I most enjoy reading? Then I began creating the characters and plot ideas of that kind of book. I still have notebooks from the early 70s describing virtual reality, nanotech, and other technologies that have since become well known theories or have appeared in our lives, under different names of course. If I’d had my novel, first titled Tales of the Crossroad, but now titled Opening Wonders published back then, people would probably regard me as some kind of seer or prophet. Alas, or perhaps for the best, my first attempt at Tales, begun in the early 90s, came out far too long and far too, well, clumsy. My skills needed years of development to reach anything close to a publishable level.
Still, the work involved in completing and editing a long novel, however poorly done, gave me enough practice and education to get my short stories and novellas published a few years later.
I’ve rewritten Opening Wonders five times since then, as my writing skills and general understanding have increased, and believe the version soon to be published is finally worthy.
Dr. Alien, now on sale, is pure SF while Opening Wonders combines SF with Fantasy plus an invented cosmology and actual mythology.
Other novels of mine eager to be published are an enhanced version of Shootout at the Nokai Corral (serialized in Analog) and its sequel, High Neon, Bright and Deep, and my two middle school novels about Umbrella Jones who is barely out of her teens, a genius, and who develops truly weird magical powers but only when it rains.
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