Hands steepled, staring intently towards the wall, I too, assumed the form of our beloved high functioning sociopath as I mulled over what went wrong.
Wrong, wrong, did it go wrong? Is it wrong? What’s wrong? Could it be not wrong? Nothing wrong? What’s wrong? Is it wrong? Did it go wrong? Wrong!
You get it. It’s ART. Like an Escher tessellation, stare at it too long and you’ll see something different entirely. And when it’s completed art, you definitely cannot revisit it. It’s out there. It’s DONE. To analyze after the fact is bad juu juu.
But what if it’s wrong?
Here’s what I decided to do…
Book’s been out officially since 4 April, that makes 80 days as of this post date. Technically, I’m coming premature on my decision, but, (this the part where I release the steeple to point the definitive index finger) fuck it, it’s my book.
What had happened was, ([CHORUS]: And then, riiight!) I went through a publisher to release I Blew Up Juarez. In the T minus 1 hour of wrapping up production, right at the all-systems-go point, she decides not to associate with this work. Demonstrating complete lack of professionalism, she wanted her company logo emblazoned across the cover artwork, and I said no, so she got butthurt and pulled out. Infuriating, considering I compromised artistic license, time, and patience to meet the publisher’s needs.
Since it’s release, my astute readers are pointing out the wide, gaping hole in the lemniscate-like track that is this fast paced story, a true sin in the literary world: you do NOT introduce a character without validating his/her purpose. This is Composition 1000, and I’m looking terrible! The fifteen chapters omitted during production were initially agreed to be more for Book 3 than this book, that’s why they were out, but she should’ve caught the dangling character.
Technically it’s the publisher’s fault but since now I am the publisher, well, I’m making an executive decision.
…I shall publish an epilogue to I Blew Up Juarez for release this holiday season. With my impeccable discipline and (hopefully) people leaving me the fuck alone while I work, the fifteen chapters that were omitted in the story will be provided in full splendor, and, with deft styling, will bridge Book 2 to Book 3 handsomely.
*SIGH* Now that feels right.
And here’s the gift that keeps on giving: all of you who have purchased a copy of I Blew Up Juarez from me since its release to today (Eastern Standard Time, don’t get cheeky) will get [WT]The Epilogue FOR FREE! Why? Because you fuckin’ rock.
And now we DANCE!
I finished watching Breaking Bad on Netflix just a few moments ago. I applauded the screen after Vince Gilligan’s name appeared in the final credits. Bravo.
It made me sink into my couch and pop this notebook open, to purge what I’ve been experiencing. An end. A proud moment. A reckoning, delivered, successfully.
Last Thursday morning at approximately 5am, shortly after completing a NINE hour, non-stop, final read of I Blew Up Juarez, I submitted the final proof to my publisher, Trace Taylor Publishing. Little indie operation out of Gulfport, Florida, a place that became, in the last five months, the epicenter of my existence as a writer.
Since Thursday morning I’ve been suffering through small bursts of panic and anxiety, doing my damnedest not to succumb to uncertainty, not let doubt take over. But at this point, I’m at a loss. I don’t know what’s happening. Literally, don’t know what’s happening to my art. I’ve never been here before. I’ve had a lifetime of experiences, but I haven’t been here before.
Trust is key. I have to trust Trace Taylor Publishing is going to fulfill the contract I signed February 20, 2013. I have to trust my final adjustments are applied, my cover artwork transitions to print, my intentions are conveyed. I have to trust that all the effort I put forward to tell the story of Johnny Saucedo was not in vain.
Between panic attacks I busied myself, getting out of the Treehouse, spending time in public, under the lovely Florida winter sun, talking to fellow artists and releasing, really releasing, the feelings I have about this process. The start was exciting, the creative process, a wild surf of my passions, but the end? The end? Here we are. The end.
Before sitting down to dinner and series finale, I took my copy of The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest poolside, doubly to get out of my head for a few hours and to finish the Millenium trilogy so I can watch the movies! Came across this, talking about Mikael Blomkvist, the heroic celebrity journalist: As always when a job was finished and at the printer, and nothing could be changed, he felt empty. I had to laugh. Steig Larsson, are you talking to me right now??
I read Vince Gilligan’s GQ interview a few months back regarding the end of his excellent series. What Bryan Cranston and he put together was a man’s tale of self-recognition and in the delivery of the tale, Vince Gilligan felt all that needed to be said was said. He is proud of the story. It ended correctly.
I feel the same way of this work too. I Blew Up Juarez is Book Two out of four I wrote regarding the protagonist’s life journey. But even in the last few months, as the work went from my creative space to a tangible Adobe file, I saw opportunities for the story to splinter off. The characters Johnny encounters shine well enough on their own. Just as Saul Goodman will be experiencing a resurrection via a Breaking Bad spinoff, there is a high chance I’ll be creating flash novellas highlighting characters from the Juarez story. Even though the story of I Blew Up Juarez ends, there’s way more to experience! Kind of like a dirty bomb; the shrapnel can land anywhere, the bits of shard and metal and stone within could morph into its own thing upon release. I sit here thinking of the future, and it seems plausible that The End is merely marking a Beginning. And a beginning to an end, and ending a beginning.
So there is no end. There just is, the first story.
Send all your positive energy towards my publisher and the press she uses. The **MOMENT** I get updated on the status of the novel, I will certainly blog it up!
Let RiRi convey my emotions with song:
Over on Facebook I’m promoting my upcoming novel, I Blew Up Juarez. Every Tuesday until the book release, I’m gonna feature a character teaser. Last week, everyone met Set, and this week, the brilliant Jah.
His curiosity encourages Jah to make new discoveries, foregoing the consequences, such as warping a simple creature into a destructive demigod. Oops!
Over on Facebook I’m promoting my upcoming novel, I Blew Up Juarez. Every Tuesday until the book release, I’m gonna feature a character teaser. Last week, everyone met Iwan Maclaggan, and this week, the ambitious Set. Humankind is NOT ready.
My inspirations include Storm of the X-Men, 70s era Nightshade (Captain America’s nemesis) and Hapshetsut, the benevolent pharaoh who happened to be a woman.
Over on Facebook I’m promoting my upcoming novel, I Blew Up Juarez. Every Tuesday until the book release, I’m gonna feature a character teaser. Last week, everyone met Mimi Deshpande, and this week, Iwan Maclaggan.
Well. Will ya look at that.
After the obligatory panic attack, I converted to the power of positive thinking: you achieved exactly what you intended to do! After three years of production, I’m 24 days away from releasing my first novel.
Four years ago, I made the decision to do this. I budgeted, I organized, I executed the plan. Et viola! $1.00 left. I. AM. GOOD. AT. THIS.
This is the very first time in my long life I’ve let my bank account dwindle to nothing. This is the first time in my long life I let all my money go towards making MY dream come true.
I admit, however… I do miss steak.
NEVER GO TO BED HUNGRY PASTA
Contrary to popular belief, you can eat well under $5.00. The trick is to invest in the spice foundations and kitchen fundamentals while the grass grows high. Once the grass becomes short and dry, well, you’ve got a go-to dish that’s filling and keeps your energy up.
Wheat pasta – you can get 14 ounces @ $1.00
4 Tbsp. butter/margarine – a 5-pack costs less than $1.00 at most major grocers
Grated parmesan cheese – you can get 8 ounces @ $1.00
1 Tbsp. minced garlic – you can get an 8 oz. jar of ready-minced garlic for $1.00
crushed red pepper
salt to taste (although the fat and cheese will likely be salty enough)
Prepare pasta per box instructions. As it cooks, start another pan. Drop the 4 Tbsp. butter or margarine and melt it down. Add minced garlic and a shake of parmesan cheese, allow both to toast in the butter/margarine. Then add Italian seasoning and crushed red pepper. Move the pan off the heat, but keep the burner on; the pan is coming back shortly.
By the time you’ve prepared the base of the sauce, the pasta should be ready to rinse. Drain the water but SAVE about a 1/2 cup. Add the saved portion of the starchy water and noodles into the pan and bring the pan back to its burner. Toss all the ingredients together, until the pasta is evenly coated. Cut the heat, let the pasta rest 4 minutes, then serve.
This recipe is for two servings, adjust accordingly. This is a good base recipe; as your expendable income grows, you can diversify. Add fresh spices, use olive oil, throw in meats, veggies, you get the idea.
Over on Facebook I’m promoting my upcoming novel, I Blew Up Juarez. Every Tuesday until the book release, I’m gonna feature a character teaser. Last week, everyone met Phoebe Maclaggan, and this week, Mimi Deshpande, a tiny woman with a big attitude!
In this video, Mimi’s attempt to join a sorority is floundered when Johnny needs intel on her brother, Rockaway. WATCH [start at 10:22]: