Sunday, July 14, 2013

Sound it out

So, I've been actively trying to publish my work for three years now. I guess I've done alright, though it feels like I've been at this for much longer. I've already missed my five-year college anniversary, for instance. Over the years, I've had a handful of people ask me about an audio plan, my poetry, my short stories, my novels in a way that people could listen to. I didn't so much lack interest in such a thing as much as I lacked control over such. When I tell people about my publications, I only mention the novels (whose audio rights I don't own), primarily because it seems like unless people can hold it in their hands, it's of less value to them.

But out of nowhere I received an email about the very first thing that was ever put online in a publicized fashion. In 2010, I wrote a series of stories about super heroes in the 60s in a stylized Chicago I called Galena. I called it Silver Age. I liked the story, thought it was good, but I can admit that it wasn't as good as it could've been. It certainly didn't benefit from the years of writing I've done since. On the forum of the website it was published through, it warranted one comment, although the editor did take the time to make it poetic:

A spring of heroes.
Chapters like puzzle pieces
Don't fall into place.

It was about nicest and most creative "I didn't get it" I had ever received, or have received sinsce. I tried to get out of the poet what didn't work for him, and a different editor cited not being able to tell if the powers involved were "like Watchmen" or not. I couldn't reply to that, because his question made even less sense to me than apparently did my writing to him.

But I digress. The emailer cited that he had seen my work up on the site, and wanted to work with me on getting other things of mine produced in audio. A maven of confidence that I am, I first assumed it was some kind of hoax. Turns out it's a pretty legitimate operation, and focuses on audio production. I got even more excited about polishing up Silver Age. I was already thinking about the story because a friend was talking to me about the necessity of the origin story in super hero tales. He wondered why every movie, or every first movie had to do with how the normal character became not so normal. I argued that a company would find it difficult to market such a thing to audience members that didn't own, or hadn't heard of, the graphic novels and comics that preceded the movie. I went on to say that part of the point was the transition from the normality. "The origin is the story," is what I told him, and I went on to say that I believed that is what created the draw of the super hero, the cool gadgets, the slick powers, the hurtling above the hum drum. I told him I didn't know of any story that never really went into how the heroes came to be such. I thought about it for awhile, really puzzling out if what I had said in the moment was something I really thought.

And I thought of my own writing, and how Silver Age never gets into that. In fact, in planning it, I went into assuming people would know what a super hero was (and maybe that is what created the "Watchman" problem; maybe it isn't). Regardless, I have a reason to dig up three years ago and see about its bones. Maybe I'll post the new, updated version on here as apart of these sketches I've promised to keep churning out.

Or maybe you'll hear about it elsewhere. And I mean literally, maybe you'll actually hear it.

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