But, I try.
Outside, it's a balmy 55˚, here at noon on the last day of April. I want to go home. I don't know where home is, but I'm pretty sure it's someplace that actually has spring.
The past three days have been spent reading back over all of Blood Oranges, reading it all start to finish for the first time. We'll likely be finished tomorrow. We'd be finished today if not for the thing with the goddamn doctor visit. Last night, though, a sort of "epilogue" for the book occurred to me that elevates it a bit above the station of "anti-ParaRom" werepire romp. But just a little. It's still mostly the middle finger. Actually, the "epilogue" (that's not really what I mean, but I have no other word to do the deed) may only make it more so. An extra joint to that middle finger, as it were. And yet still leave it utterly amenable for the contracted sequels, Fay Grimmer and Puppy Love.
So, on Saturday I wrote:
People have been asking for news of Dancy's future at Dark Horse beyond the five-issue Alabaster: Wolves mini-series. At this point in time I can say that yes, there will be more. But exactly how much more there will be, and when, and all that...these are questions I'm still working on. The ball is in my court. As are about twenty other projects. Or tennis balls. Or whatever. Between now and the end of the year I have to*:
01. Sort of rewrite Alabaster: Wolves #5, because I decided I don't like the ending.
02. With the rest of the Alabaster creative team – Steve, Rachelle, Greg, and Rachel – continue to construct the remainder of the mini, issues #3-5. You didn't think it was finished, did you?
03. Edit ( i.e., proofread, correct) Blood Oranges, and address issues raised by the editorial letter.
04. Write Fay Grimmer (the sequel to Blood Oranges).
05. Appear as Guest of Honour at Readercon 23.
06. Write the first half of Blue Canary, so that my agent can begin shopping the series.
07. Write a metric shit-ton of short fiction. Between now and the December I have to write about (conservative estimate) seventeen short stories/vignettes, between Sirenia Digest and various anthologies.
08. In late November and December, begin The Dinosaurs of Mars for Subterranean Press (which I've only been trying to get around to writing since 2007), which hopefully will be finished in early January 2013.
09. Get Aunt Beast's Salt Marsh Home Companion up and running.
10. Work with Centipede Press to compile the super bow-tie deluxe, limited hardback edition of The Red Tree (to be released in 2013).
So, whatever additional Dancy comics are to be written this year have to be considered in the context of this schedule. There will be more, and soon, I promise, and I may have the details for you before long, but if it's not what you'd hoped for, please consider the list above. There is a limited quantity of me.
I have so much on my plate that I've just turned down a modestly profitable offer to teach a course on writing fantasy and sf. I was, by the way, very flattered they weren't asking me to teach a course on writing "horror. I cited my schedule, plus the fact that I have no idea how to teach anyone else to write. It's just what I do, and it'd probably take me a year to even begin to figure out how I do what it is I do. Moreover, to be frank, and as I have said before – no one can teach anyone else to write. You can show them their mistakes. You can tell them about the industry. You can discuss good fiction and bad fiction, and the inherent subjectivity in telling the one from the other. You can teach them grammar. But you can't teach them to write. That "craft" stuff it bullshit. You have the talent – which has to be honed before your writing is worth a shit, and which we spend our lives honing – or you don't. If you don't, no one can make you a writer. Oh, they might even, maybe, make you more acceptable to editors and get you published. But you'll never be a writer. And the people who teach writing workshops aren't happy when an instructor tells a student they simply don't have the chops and they never will – as most students don't and won't (no matter how many expensive workshops they attend). Also, why would I want to create additional competition in a highly competitive and already overcrowded field?
See, I'm trying not to worry over the lost income by reassuring myself I'd have been fired after a week, anyway.
But yes, more Dancy. Definitely. But details TBA. Meanwhile, don't forget that a special Dancy story will be available come Free Comic Book Day (May 5th). It's called "Shelter," and is divided between the two free Dark Horse comics (the first part in the issue with Star Wars and Serenity, the second half in the issue with The Guild and Buffy the Vampire Slayer). Also, Dark Horse has released a six-page color preview of Alabaster: Wolves #2. Go have a look.
And now I have to do a tiny bit of work before the guillotine. I do have a link to an article Stephen King has written that you ought to read. Normally, I don't care for Stephen King, but this political op-ed piece is spot-on: "Stephen King: Tax Me, for F@%&’s Sake!"
Cherish Your Anger,