Saturday, August 1, 2015

This Is The Question: To Serialize or Not to Serialize?

Escape From Pig Hill, first book in The Ballad of Donny Granger is soon to complete its serialization. I have considered this process of serializing the novel to be an experiment.  I needed to see how many readers came to the site, how many people donated to the serialization project, how much income was derived from book sales combined with donations.  Overall, I have found the process useful.  It HAS brought more readers to my audience and I have earned more income on Escape in its first quarter than on any other of my books.  

In September, I'll release a poetry collection, GodSongs.  Poetry is not suitable for serial publication. Next up will be Ermengarde The Expansive and The Year of Long Light, a novella.  This book will be considerably longer than the original Ermengarde The Expansive,  though the action takes place in a much shorter period of time.  I am considering serializing this new book but wonder if a novella will appeal to readers in this format.  What are your thoughts?  


Please tell, in comments below, or via private email, what you think:  Should I serialize Ermengarde The Expansive and The Year of Long Light?  

Thursday, July 30, 2015

And Now, A Word From Our Sponsor: ME

Lest we forget I am actually in the writing biz to make a living, I want to point you all to a book I remain proud of,  Love Lines, Illustrated Passion Poems for Lovers and Other People.   Also available in ebook format from Lulu.  Love Lines includes a few dozen poems and illustrations about love in all it's glory and gore.  You'll find, among other things, my poem cycle, A Woman's Life and Love.  If that's not enough to convince you to purchase your own copy of Love Lines, how about this lovely review?  Short, sweet and music to this poet's ears.  

Please consider the care and feeding of this working poet.  Buy Love Lines today!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Pics That Did Not Make The Cut

Content Warning:  ART shared below.  Tasteful nudity included in some shots.  
STOP RIGHT HERE IF YOU ARE OFFENDED BY NUDITY IN SMALL DOSES.

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Having finished a project last week, I spent part of the weekend getting organized for what comes next.  This means I spent several hours filing pics I did not use in Escape From Pig Hill (already on the market) or GodSongs (to be released in September).  Most of these illustrations were pretty bad. Still, I save them for posterity and to be cannibalized down to pieces and parts for use in other projects. Some were actually good, but did not serve the purposes for which they were intended.  

artwork (c) Freda Frostbite, 2015
Like this one, which I actually like very much.  It was one depiction of the three graces for Three Graces In Rome, which will be included in the section of Godsongs for poems based on Greco-Roman mythology.  Much as I like this version of the shot, it was not quite right for the book.  Among other things, it requires color and GodSongs will be mostly in black and white. Ironic, when one considers that a point I hope is made in the collection is that religion is never black and white.  




artwork (c) Freda Frostbite, 2015


I truly love this one and will definitely use it elsewhere.  It was one of the shots I set up for Nude Salutation, which is part of the New Age mythology section of the book.  I even considered using it for a cover, but decided against using a nude there.  Personally, I see nothing offensive about this shot, but, no doubt, someone will.  

artwork (c) Freda Frostbite, 2015

Sometimes, good shots happen by accident.  Often, in Second Life, I take my avatar, Freda, to a night club so I can listen to live music and watch avatars dance while sorting my inventory.  (If you've ever been part of a virtual community, you probably realize that sorting one's virtual belongings is necessary to one's effectiveness and sanity.)   This shot is one I snapped several weeks ago whilst listening to Mad Max Huet play the blues at The Lemon Drop Cafe in Soho, SL.  I happened to look up and see Freda looking pretty much exactly the way I felt at that moment, so I snapped away.  Looking at the shots later, I realized they were the perfect place to start an illustration for riff on cummings, which is included in GodSongs' Judeo-Christian mythology section.  

Friday, July 24, 2015

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Call For Submissions: Poetry, Art and Short Fiction Wanted for VORTEX, v.1

Dark-Vortex by GDJ, courtesy of openclipart.org
Diva Press Publications is accepting submissions for the first edition of VORTEX, a literary and art magazine to be published semi-annually starting November 1, 2015. VORTEX will be edited by the owners of Diva Press Publications.  The magazine will be available in hard copy and eBook format.  Contributors will be paid in hard copies, each selected poem, artwork, photo, or short story earning its creator one paperback copy of VORTEX.  

VORTEX is looking for Poetry under 200 lines, fiction under 10,000 words, art and photography suitable for publication in black and white.  Submissions will be accepted from July 24 to September  15, 2015.  They may be submitted via email, as a google doc, or as .odt, text, or JPEG attachments.  Send to StephanieMesler@gmail.com  We will consider any and all submissions on any topic, so long as they adhere to the above guidelines.  If you need inspiration, see this definition for ideas.  

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Illustrating *GodSongs,* Rhea Silvia

Good Lord willin' and the river don't rise, GodSongs will be published and available on most major markets by September 1.  Currently, I am illustrating and laying out the poems that make up the last section of the book, Lamentations of The Sabine Women.  I expect to be finished illustrating this poem cycle by the end of this week.  The second of the Lamentations poems was the first poem I wrote for GodSongs, having no idea at the time that there would be a collection of poems based on mythology.  Lamentations was the first myth story I wanted to tell, or retell, depending on how you look at it.  Interestingly, its first poem was the last written for the book and its illustrations are proving to be most difficult.  

Rhea Silvia is the first poem in Lamentations.  It tells the story of Rhea Silvia, birth mother of Romulus and Remus. Rhea Silvia  (queen of the forest, or guilty woman of the forest, or forest by the river flowing) was a Daughter of Numitor.  She was forced into service as a vestal virgin by the usurper king, Amulius.  When she became pregnant,  she claimed to have been raped by Mars, who came upon her in a forest. She gave birth to Romulus and Remus, but abandoned her children when Amulius threatened to put them to death rather than risk losing power to them. In some variations of the tale, the children were rescued by a she-wolf and later  adopted by shepherd and his wife.  Rhea Silvia married Tiberinus, God of The Tiber.  

I found this illustration particularly difficult for a number of reasons, not the least of which being that Rhea Silvia's story is many-layered, as was the woman.  She was a daughter, a victim, a mother, a lover, a liar.  She was, at the same time, sympathetic and impossible to like.  There are many characters and many plot twists in her story.  Obviously, the illustration could not include them all. Narrowing the field was a challenge.  The illustration below is not the one I chose for the book. There are a number of problems with it.  But this one came close to being what I wanted and pointed me in the right direction.  



Thursday, July 16, 2015

Haiku Throw-Down: HEAT

It's hot here in Florida.  I hear it's hot in Texas and Ohio and lots of other places too.  So it's time for a Haiku Throw-Down on the topic of HEAT!  I invite you to write a haiku or compound haiku about something, someone, or some place that is HOT and send it my way by Monday, July 20!  You send it and I'll publish it here on A Poet's Progress.

Back in school, we were taught that haiku contain three lines of five, seven, and five syllables.  The truth is haiku are less restrictive than that.  If you have any doubt, I point you to this wiki on how to write haiku.  Here is a more traditional set of instructions (in the American school system sense of tradition) from Creative Writing Now.    The main rules for your submission here are.
  • Keep it simple
  • Keep it short
  • Have fun!
  • Send your haiku to me in comments on this blog or via email to StephanieMesler@gmail.com




Here's mine:  

Scorched blacktop steaming
after rain pours, bathtub warm,
cooks runners' sneakers.









Just in from Robin Double-ewe:

Thankfully not hot
but still miserable
rain, rain go away.

And from Lori Ann Reese:

Summer in Texas.
Dehydration is a pain.
I prefer Diet Pepsi.

From Bill Keck
Hot and humid 
Jetskiing on Fox River

Eating fajitas