Amazon, book covers, characterization, Christian Speculative Fiction, creating covers, fiction, Kindle Short Reads, science fiction, self-publishing, short story, speculative fiction, writing, writing challenges, writing fiction
I’ve had ideas coming at me left and right since I got consistently back to writing. This is not a new phenomenon: You want to get ideas, think about writing every day and write every day and give the brain that jumpstart.
I didn’t write for nearly 7 years, and then when I wanted to switch gears, it took a long time. My brain had sort of frozen up on that blocked dark night of the creative soul (as I term it). But once I was back and insisted my brain function, and just slogged through horrible paragraphs and painful brainwork (and it was painful, like I wanted to bend over and make it stop), the mind started to remember what it could do.
Creativity really is something like a muscle. Work it and it gets stronger.
Anyway, I have two stories that I work on alternately. When I feel dissatisfied with one, I switch to the other. They are both challenging, and that’s good. More calisthenics for the creative muscle.
Both have aliens. As I write, I need to think like something non-human to some degree. In one of the stories, the alien is, indeed, very alien, and trying to imagine what it is to be this thing whose social purposes and goals and ideals are in some ways not like humans and whose physical functions are not like humans, but whose soul is strangely akin to ours in ways–it’s a struggle.
I had wanted to have it finished and published by June. Shoot, I made the cover for “The Merciful Stars” two months ago when I thought it would be a collection of 3 shorts. But I pubbed two of them individually when it became clear I was gonna have to give more thought and plotting to TMS, the final story, title story. It’s still incomplete. I know where to start and where to end, I even have the last lines and some key plot points and dialogue. I have some key settings worked out. It’s making the stages of human/alien connection have the feel I want and fixing some story logic issues, then fleshing out more. For all I know, this may end up more a novelette.
So, here I am, struggling still. It’s a wee mountain. I may fail, may not reach the summit of what I wish to do, but if I get halfway up and can say, “Okay, I will share this; it is enough,” then it will be Kindled.
Below are two fiddlings for covers. The one on the right needs to be changed to reflect it’s just one short story by that title, not three. The one on the left I only mocked up this past week when I got a clearer idea for what I wanted to do with the premise of the spiritual gift of faster-than-light travel. (yep, you read that right). I originally planned to do poetry–hymns that had to do with space and worship on spaceships, hymns you would hear sung in the chapel on the cover, with suitable metaphors for the spacefarer-worshipper.
Now, it’s becoming a story of starshipping post alien encounter where we’ve learned faster-than-light technology, but there is a mysterious gift that enables it, and not everyone has it, and the source puzzles scientists (and vexes them) I am thinking of bringing back the Aardavi of ‘Voices from the Void,” though right now the aliens have another name and look. I may revise that to connect the stories, set in a time way before VftV, the Aardavi in an earlier age of their civilization, still quite advanced and yet highly spiritual:
I’ve also jotted down two ideas for non-fiction/devotionals that I want to add to the week’s work –the switch-hitters for when the stories make me go ARGH and I have to move to a non-story project. One is an apocalyptic abecedarium. The other is a devotional based on the Apostle’s Creed, with a companion to follow later (I hope, I plan) based on the twelve apostles. I also jotted down a preliminary notion to do a devotional from a speculative perspective. A Sci-Fi or Fantasy devotional.
I’m also working out an idea for very short devotionals that would fit in the 15 minute category of Kindle Short Reads. Devotional for folks pressed for time or that can be read on a break at work or on a short bus ride commute or while waiting for the dentist to call you in or while having an espresso at the coffeeshop.
So, more to do than I have energy and time for, which is better than the drought of 7 years. I like a fruitful brain and a bubbly imagination.
Thanks for visiting. Be well and God bless.
If you want to try one or both of my currently epubbed stories, visit me at Amazon. And I come right up if you search by the keyword “Mirtika.” I am the only one so named. 😀