Thursday, December 2, 2010

29,000 & Counting

That's me at the LOVECRAFT UNBOUND reading at last year's WFC, and in my lap is the copy of the rare Arkham House book, Dreams and Fancies, that I found for $90 in ye dealer's room.  These two books shew what a long way we have come as Lovecraftians, and how the Lovecraft scene today remains vital and active.  Ellen's anthology was simply magnificent, gathering excellent tales from a wide range of artists, unique fiction that explores Lovecraftian themes with intelligence and ingenuity.  The wee Arkham House book takes us back to a time when Lovecraft was not yet the icon he is today, but it helped to take him there and is a wonderful collection, a book I return to for inspiration and eldritch delight, with that fine cover by Richard Taylor.
Happily, Arkham House is still around and has arisen from its nameless slumber.  This heightens the excitement of what it means to be a weird tale fan today.  The plan for Arkham House is to publish books by older AH authors (new collections by past AH "house" writers is the way I think it would be phrased) and then newer books by modern writers -- Lois Gresh will have a collection from them next year, and I learned last night of another author who is working with them on his first AH collection.  One of the greatest things about Arkham House were the fantastic anthologies of original fiction that August Derleth assembled, and Derleth's superb anthologies of weird poetry.  Plans are assembled to bring forth a three-volume edition of the fabulous poetry anthology, Dark of the Moon, with many new and original poems by modern poets, and a new anthology of weird fiction may be in the works as well!  It was my discovery of Arkham House and books such as H. P. Lovecraft's Selected Letters and Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos that turned me into an insanely obsess'd Lovecraftian and gave me my firm determination to become a professional Mythos writer.  I owe Arkham House a lot.

I am now just past 29,000 words with Some Unknown Gulf of Night.  I have five more sonnets in HPL's Fungi from Yuggoth on which to write prose segments: XXXII. Alienation, XXXIII. Harbour Whistles, XXXIV. Recapture, XXXV. Evening Star and XXXVI. Continuity.  But I still want to make this wee chapbook a work of 40,000 words, which means that each new segment would need to be 2,000 words.  Thus I am taking a new course, and these last five segments of the sequence will form portions of a new Sesqua Valley story, with each portion inspir'd in some way by the sonnet on which it is a comment.  I wasn't going to have any references to Sesqua in this book, but then I thought, on, what the hell.  & nigh I have this really perverse inclination to write a tale in which I kill off Simon Gregory Williams.  I've been playing with this all day, & now the idea doesn't seem "right".  I think I want to continue making each segment a direct "comment" on the sonnet that serves as inspiration, & yet I can hopefully make each of the last five segments 2,000 words.  We shall see.  It hath been quite amazing, writing this thing in a state of creative hypnosis almoft, where I feel my soul flowing through waves of creativity.  I've never experienced anything like this in my writing life.  I continue to grow as an artist, and much of that has been made possible by moving in with Mother and being able to write full time. 

I am so looking forward to meeting some of you there, in Phoenix!

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