Tag Archives: duane pesice

Outlets


Space Cadet Marvin
It’s been a couple of months since I last blogged. Forgive me, readers, for I have sinned.

Such sins are unlikely to be repeated as this blog has become one of my prime outlets, at least for now. My personal website has been terminated, due to my distaste for playing security guard as well as content creator. I had that thing for the better part of twenty years, but enough is enough. Thanks, hackers and ne’er-do-wells.

I’m using the time to generate more content. I do a ton of work gratis. It isn’t really a problem for me–I’d like to get paid for some stuff, but I can’t always, and I have an earnings cap because of my medical needs.
So my chief interest is in filling the time and developing what skills I have. I pick up a little change here and there, and place the odd anthology or magazine piece. All of those things build audience for my book(s) (well, at least theoretically), and that’s worked so far.

“before Crazytown” has sold more than 1500 copies since its November 2014 debut. It still has but one review, and hasn’t been available since September. I’m embroiled in a Kafkaesque situation with Amazon regarding that volume, and slowly trying to either satisfy the requirements of an editor with an attitude or waste enough time to fulfill the one-year agreement with Amazon and cut loose from there and go back to Smashwords and Lulu. There’ll be a second edition, with a couple of stories added and a roster shuffle, no matter what. And it’ll be available as an actual real paper book that you can fondle, fold, and manipulate. Perhaps even read.

I just don’t know when. Continue reading

Fried Day


Been a little run-down lately. Stress from at-home situations, general lack of restful sleep (or sleep in general), some ill health.

I’ve been reasonably productive, reaching my wordcount goal (2500 words, now that I’ve come around again to setting a goal), some of which output seems actually usable in the real world. I’m working on anthology-targeted pieces as I think I need more presence to get to the level of “respectability” that I crave. The only other way is to trad-publish one of my books…the trad-published have a real thing about self-publishers, and it’s hard to be taken seriously by other authors when you do it. One has to have a really outstanding body of work in order to pull it off, assuming one has pro-level skills (and, hubris aside, I’m assuming that. You may feel free to upbraid me for my error if you wish.) Continue reading

Brown and Blue and Yellow in the Fall


The King in Yellow

The King in Yellow
2014 by Duane Pesice

The King, the King, the Yellow King. He and I have been going a couple of rounds.
He and Cassilda are unconvinced by my storyline, telling me that it’s all contrived, and anyway, it’s not their fault that everything around them dies or goes mad from terror. They say that I cannot make everything all science fiction-y and still make it work.
Pfaugh! I say, thumbing my nose. Watch this! And I invent another metaphorical gunman, and he walks out of the machinery and into history.
What’s your conceptual continuity? He wants to know, echoing Zappa. Where’s this all gonna end up?
Y’know, I understand that Philip Klass used to talk out his stories to the extent that he didn’t have to write them, I tell the King, to his face, to his lipcurl. I could make you steampunk–I hiss through my teeth. And not the cool Mike Mignola kind, either.

BUT I GOT THE CRYSTAL BALL! He says, and holds it to the light.

I yawn and don’t even bother to snatch it all away. I think it away.

I’m the writer here, I tell him quietly.

He hoots, or does what passes for a hoot when your face is an animated skull. You’re gonna end up making me have tentacles and shit, he says, with some alarum.

I might, I admit. It has crossed my mind. Even though the Pulver eschews them. I’m not writing his stories. He writes those. I’m writing mine, putting these tropes through their paces as I rush headlong into my possible futures.

I ended the Brown Jenkins series. For now. I think it needs a little work. But the events in it involve a couple of other story cycles, so I’m going to explore those, with an eye toward a couple of eventual books.

The first three will be King in Yellow tales. They will take place on the King’s homeworld, by the shores of the methane lake Hali on the frozen and fiercely intelligent world Carcosa. I’ve taken the time and trouble to work out stuff like how the two moons and five suns would work, and perverted a few tropes to make it all palatable. Hard sf with a dark-fantasy feel.

Those tales lead directly back to Jenkin. And Jenkin leads to the troupe of ghouls that pass(ed) through my stories Ghoul Picnic and The Whispering Trees (in Crazytown), and to Nyarlathotep, that most capricious and conniving of the Great Old Ones.

And Nyarlathotep leads back to the reality of Nat Jenkins and his band, who feature in a novel that’s about 3/4 done. When that’s done, it’s time to revisit the Brown Jenkins series. That wants to be a novel eventually, too. Or a themed collection. I dearly love those. They’re like concept albums for me. I once wrote a 750-word themed collection (It’s in before Crazytown).

The three King in Yellow tales also have soundtracks. Hali, Sunrise On Carcosa, and Sunshine and Scarlet are the titles of the stories and songs that comprise the cycle. I have others, for future stories. Not sure that the inclusion of music isn’t simple conceit but I like doing that, so I’ll continue for now. My stuff.

So, fie, King in Yellow. I shall direct the never-ending play as I would, and you shall go through your steps dutifully.

And remember, there are worlds behind every word.

Cassilda

Cassilda
2015 by Duane Pesice

That’s about all I have to say about that. Lots of new songs coming up. And maybe some painting. After the website gruntwork I’ve been putting off.
Anyone for Letters from Outside?

Sea of Ash


The Sea of Ash
The Sea of Ash
The Sea of Ash by Scott Thomas

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Zounds! I’ve had this slim novel for quite some time (referring to the Kindle edition). It has languished in my to-read queue for an unconscionable period…but at long last I’ve given it a couple of reads, two weeks apart, and have survived to tell the story.
Reading, I was minded so much of Wells that I hd to keep checking the authorship. The Crystal Egg and the Time Machine came repeatedly to mind-the former because of the style and the latter because of a quaintly Victorian device that figures in the narrative. But Wells didn’t go in so much for the supernatural.
MR James, Walter de la Mare, those would be perhaps more suitable names to conjure with, trying to encapsulate or compare the style and subject matter of this most singular work.
Not that comparison comes anywhere close to capturing the essence of the piece, but I feel compelled to try.
There is that of the ghostly(Fractured Harry himself and several other apparitions appear), and that of the steampunk (the general Victorian air and appurtenances), and that of the strictly naturalistic, all bundled together loosely and interdependent upon one another to form the whole of the structure, like one of Clive Barker’s Cities in the Hills, or a Wicker Man.
The work deserves every accolade that comes to it. I’ve seldom beheld such a work of the imagination in a long career of reading fantastical fiction.
I just bought a copy of the Sea of Flesh and the Sea of Ash, to have the original work(s) together.
Five stars plus.

View all my reviews

In the mighty mighty water


before Crazytown

My book before Crazytownbefore Crazytown has gone live on Amazon, to  no great fanfare. I have an author page now. Not much danger of it going to my head.

But still a necessary step in the journey. The first big one–many more to come. The first POD book will be coming in a few weeks (the novel Fear and Loathing in Innsmouth), and the Crazytown collection not long after that.

Letters from Outside will be going live starting tomorrow. I’ll start copying and pasting the material, in reverse alphabetical order, as soon as I am physically able to do so. Dunno how many stories I’ll put up. Depends on how the day goes–there are several possible scenarios where I may not get much done, depending on the results of phone calls. But it’ll get started, only a couple days after I predicted. Continue reading