Song of Simon: Current Status

The bad news: A couple of weeks ago Caliburn Press, the current publisher of Song of Simon, went out of business. This left SoS up in the air and me struggling to get the publishing rights back. I did get them back when Caliburn took SoS off of Amazon.

The good news: I have the rights back and can now self-publish it. I’m tired of publishers that don’t care and I’m tired of unscrupulous agents.

The heckin frustrating news: I have to reformat it, re-edit it, and buy new cover art. This is all time and money, and I’m strapped for both. I also lost all of the reviews connected to it. I want to finish the 3rd Watchmage novel. I have short stories to write and bardic stuff for the SCA. I don’t know when I’ll have time to get SoS done again.

SoS Practice Ad 1

My question to you, good readers: Do I drop everything, but the current cover art, and republish SoS right away, or do I do a full re-edit and then buy new cover art before I publish it? It needs a re-edit. I’m a much better writer now than I was 6 years ago, when SoS came out. People seem to love the book, but I know that it can be better.

Maybe this is my chance to write the other 2 books in the planned trilogy.  Maybe it’s meant to be. I love writing Watchmage, but I’ve been working on those books for 6 years now. I need a change.

Change is good, right?..Right?

doge in space card redux

 

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When Writing Stops Being Fun

Why doesn’t this spark joy anymore? What don’t the words make me happy?

I honestly don’t know what’s going on, but I don’t seem to get the same pleasure out of writing as I used to. Maybe it’s because I’m having trouble with this 3rd book in the Watchmage Chronicles. Maybe it’s because I’m burned out on promoting and sales are showing that. Maybe it’s because three publishers that have owned my novels have gone bankrupt. Maybe it’s because working at something you love means that you never stop working, and that love becomes a chore. Maybe I’m no longer amazed.

I haven’t blogged in a long time, and I don’t understand why. Writing used to be my constant Northern Star to sail the seas by. Now I’m constantly in the dark… I’ll be at the bar.

I need to be inspired again.

Maybe this is why I’ve been so depressed. I’ve been uninspired, so I lose the joy of writing. Without that joy, I’m uninspired, and so on. Wheels within wheels in the windmills of my mind. And while I used to tilt at those windmills, now I fall off my horse onto a dusty spring field. Even creating a trail of seemingly unrelated metaphors that lead into each other in obscure ways gives me only a small amount of joy. It was a happy accident, anyway.

Okay, it felt kinda good.

doge in space card redux

 

Reunion

Last night I went to a reunion of sorts, and it turned out much better than I expected. Backstory: When I was a teen, me and all of the other local scummy people hung out at a local coffee house. The owner was an ex-cop that sold drugs out of the back of the shop.  He was also allegedly banging an underage employee, but that is just (likely) rumor.

I didn’t get along with everyone there. I was shy and weird. But I had a small circle of friends that I was very close to. Over the years, we didn’t lose touch, but they moved away one by one.

For the past few years, my best friend from the group has been coming back every christmas time, and a couple of us would get together and have a few beers. This time she thought it’d be a good idea to have some more people, and to have it at the bar where the owner of the coffee shop now bartended.

So one friend created an event on Facebook. And it grew. And it grew. And it fucking grew like an out of control giraffe erection. All the people that I hated and caused massive amounts of drama were coming. At one point the Going or Maybe Goin list was over 100. I started to dread it.

I should not have been afraid for flakes will always be flakes.

Only a small amount of people showed, 20 at the most. Most I was friends with, and I found that the formerly obnoxious ones were…still obnoxious but not as bad. In all, it was a great night that I thought would be an awful one.

So I raise a glass to good cheer. May all people we dislike turn likable in time or turn away.

doge in space card redux

 

It’s Been Such a Long Time

I can’t believe just how long it’s been since I blogged. What happened? I’m not really sure. I suppose that it’s because I’ve been busy with my life. My job eats up a lot of time, and I’ve jumped in headfirst into the SCA stuff, especially writing or reshaping folk tales for the College of Performers (Bardic performance). But I’ve been neglecting the therapeutic, er, therapeuticness of journaling.

I really love the SCA. I wish that I joined as intended 20 years. Not only is everyone super awesome, but it allows me to not only delve into medieval history, but also to write in a completely different way. The spoken word is not like the written one, and public performance is still pretty scary. But I’m doing it. I’m out of my comfort zone, but I’ve been doing okay.

Saturday was the Yule feast in Bhakail (the Philly area) and I’ve never experienced anything like it. Feasts are unique. There were servants (I’m assuming members that volunteered) and court was very interesting. I participated in a “court of love” based on the Elenor of Aquitaine style, and got to show off not only my eloquence, but my ability, poor as it is, to speak in rhyming couplets. And I won myself a basket of Hershey’s Kisses.

And yet, there’s still so much I want to get into. I’m deep in the SCA hole. I just need to balance it with my novels.

And Life. I hate being tired all of the time. I hate waking up at 4am and nodding off by 9. I’m old before my time. I want to be young again, or at least not so old.

The Captain and The Storm King of Dunderberg Mountain

Here’s yet another fractured fairy tale. I hope to include this one in my Watchmage Chronicles collection, as it’s a variation of an old folk tale of New Amsterdam (the name of New York when it was first colonized by the Dutch).

Note: My Captain Antony Van Corlear is not-so-loosely based off of the real Anthony Van Corlaer…or likely real, anyway.

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Maribell of the Needles: A Watchmage Story

I decided to rewrite “Maribell of the Needles,” this time with two endings.

casandersdotnet

I’m working on a bunch of fairy tales and short stories that take place in the world of The Watchmage Chronicles. I’ll release them in an anthology after the 3rd Watchmage novel comes out (since some of the stories take place after that book). Here’s a variation of the White Lady myth called “Maribell of the Needles.”

I decided to have two endings: A sad one and a happy one. Let me know which one you like better in the comments section.

Watchmage black

Maribell of the Needles

By C.A. Sanders

Once upon a time, though it happens every day, there lived a young seamstress named Maribell. Still apprenticed, she was at that tender age between the pins and the needles, where love takes hold and never lets go. It was a dangerous age indeed.

On a bright Spring morning, a knight and his squire came to her village and visited…

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Sometimes there’s so much that you need to say that you can’t even say it. Like, it’s so overwhelmingly that to expel it will take your heart, your lungs, and organs that you can’t even pronounce. The purge will destroy you. Keeping it inside will destroy you. No matter what, it will destroy you.

I am waiting to destroy myself or be destroyed. It’s in me, waiting. I cannot purge it. It’s attached to too many VERY IMPORTANT THINGS and I’m afraid of the blood and guts that will pour out.

So I will ignore it. It will go away. Or not. Neither way is better. I just wish that it wasn’t necessary.