Meta: Soar soon to fly free

When I wrote Soar, it was a journey of exploration and creativity for me. It’s an enjoyable story (IMO :)), but it is also something that I’d hoped would inspire and help, that would be thought-provoking and give an uplift to the oppressed outliers of society who simply want to be themselves, be they bird-people, trans people, or even just people who are afraid to be who they are in a more subtle way. I’ve heard a number of comments from friends and others (and others who became friends through reading Soar!) that it was a profound story for them.

I thought it would be neat if it could be used as a way to let me write instead of code for a living, but nearing the one-year anniversary of its release, I have to admit that this isn’t happening. And my primary purpose in writing and releasing this story is to serve those people, not to make money.

I am working on giving Soar away for free. I still have to work out the logistics, but it should be happening in the next few weeks. Stay tuned.

Meta: Saul Williams in the Paris Catacombs

The Stone Bench | Saul Williams in Paris Catacombs

Someone sent me this video, and it’s soooo so powerful; and parts of it feel almost like they were written for Soar. Watch and get a taste of Aile’s journey. I hope some day I can see this with my own eyes.

Somewhere beneath bone catacomb teeth
Through underground rivers where diggers dug deep
These underground diggers dug hallways and tombs
They built beneath cities, they carved new rooms
They carved in the rock, they chipped away stone
They carved routes and highways, they built a new home
They forged a safe haven with thoughts to convene
Where life could live freely, where rebels could dream

Meta: Print book completed!

The print book is completed! The finalization is happening on Lulu now, and I will shortly be posting a link where it may be purchased.

My apologies that the ebook will not be simultaneously available; the output from Apple Pages is proving to be less than perfect, and it will need some tweaking. I’m hoping to have that available next week.

For now, here is a fun video for you all. It’s an upcoming flight simulator / game where you actually fly as a bird (shape-shifter) rather than a plane. There’s a full physics model and everything; looks neat! I’m sort of laughing at birds with lasers, though.

Meta: Print formatting nearly complete

As the title says, the print book formatting is nearly complete. I have a sketch to draw for later on in the book, and it will be ready to send off to Lulu! Working up to release, here is a quote from our heroine:

Though I think we’re not the strange ones, honestly. The strange ones are the ones out there who deny that there is any seeking to be done. That all is said and done, in the world. I bet they got a surprise on Aurora Day.”

Meta: Soar editing done! And an excerpt.

Editing is done, huzzah! Paper formatting is nearly complete as well. To celebrate, a short excerpt from Soar. Facebook friends, click the link for the full text.

Somehow, Aile trusts her completely. She reaches up as if to touch the woman, and the woman reaches out to touch Aile as well. Their hands meet in a little electric spark. The woman’s hand is warm, so very warm. And Aile feels her emotions like thoughts.

Come with me, they say.

Become with me.

Become me.

Aile shivers at the enormity of the offer, the promise of rest.

Let go of your pain and join my light.

Aile and the woman start to walk toward each other at the same time…

Meta: Home stretch!

It’s been a long, hard pull (with a few misunderstandings), but I can safely say that the editing on Soar is nearly complete. I’m hoping to have some excerpts up soon. Final formatting for publication will not take very long compared to what’s come before, and then it will be out and ready to go.

Meta: Soar editing still carrying on; short story book

Soar editing is still carrying on, and we’re keeping calm. 🙂 I’ve been surprised at how much blood there is to be squeezed out of that stone. But we all want it to be exactly right on the first try. So the current estimate has been updated to Fall 2011.

On a recent trip, I also worked on some new writing for the short story compilation. My current writing tool of choice, the Lean Mean Writing Machine, or Nadia, is an old 13″ Powerbook. Sadly, she’s mostly good for web browsing and text editing now; but that turns every travel moment into an opportunity to do some writing undistracted by daily worries. One of the new stories is a short but sweet fairy tale of sorts; the other may end up being a Soar pre-history or far-future, though I haven’t really started on it enough to know for sure, yet. These will join a short story and a novella about an alien world where shapeshifters fight for their freedom; a depressed Irishman caught up with the fae; and an online romance that takes a strange turn. These stories were all written over the last ten years or so, but in the end, they’ve all ended up with an alchemy theme. It’s sort of neat how that worked out. So the title and the theme of the book will probably be alchemy-related, as well.

No more spoilers! 🙂 I may try to post some teaser text from Soar soon, though.

Meta: Editing, Part Two

Just a little status update for everyone!

The “final editing pass” I mentioned earlier was actually to consist of two editors each making their own editing pass. The first of editor is now finished and his changes are integrated into the book. It will now head off to the second editor, and when she’s finished, I’ll begin the final formatting for the book in both print and e-book formats.

I’m planning to build some business cards and flyers soon. When that’s done, I’ll post the graphics up here so that anyone who wants to print some of their own and pass them out can do that. For anyone in the Portland area, you’re welcome to ask me for some of the nicely printed ones!

Finally, I’ve started giving some more serious thought to the short story compilation I want to produce next. There will be four stories I’ve written over the past ten years or so (including one novella), and I have two more stories planned, including a Soar short story. This is all very tentative right now, but I’d really like this project to come to fruition as well. So if all goes well, you’ll have some more Soar coming. 🙂 The other stories have different themes, and some of them have very a different feel (including one that I would classify as “sci-fi future noir”), but all of them have a theme of transformation and self-exploration that I think will appeal to anyone who likes Soar.

Meta: Final pass editing, Real Soon Now!

Many read-throughs have happened on my Kindle on the bus, and I’ve received some very kind comments from “beta” readings. So we are going to begin the final editing pass soon. Things are still well on track for a release by the end of summer.

A wiki is now in progress for all things Ashlyn, which right now means a lot of info about Soar. ^^; Specifically, there’s a full Ka’aulele language wiki in progress. Some language info will be in the book itself, but everything I know of it will go into the wiki and will be available at book release time.

This week I am also planning to get the email announcement list going. I’ll post and tweet and status-update (that almost sounds profane) when it happens.

Thank you to everyone who’s watching and everyone who tunes in soon!