werewolf, werewolves and lycans

Preparing the way for THERIOPHOBIA

I had this crazy dream once. It came true. Alternately, I was a dismal failure. The dream was to make my living as a writer. I am doing that, slowly but surely. I’m not bursting onto the scene in a flash and bang, the way I had hoped, but little by little the fire is catching, spreading. On the flip side, I faceplanted. To explain, my intention had been to write NOVELS. I have five complete novels that are just sitting in my digital strongbox. I struggled for years trying to get someone to notice them, and never even got a nibble. I eventually, after a ridiculously long time, managed to snag a literary agent. She was unable to secure a sale for any of my books, either. Now the outsider would read this and make the assumption that my work sucks. That’s why I never made any headway. The outsider would be wrong. Anybody remember “Miss Snark,” the online blogger alternate identity of some literary agent? (She’s long gone now.) I wrote to her once, years ago, and asked her advice on how I could snag the attention of an agent. (This is before I had one.) She told me that “obviously” I had no talent or I would already have had one. She made this sapient pronouncement without ever having read one single word of my work. (That’s some more prescience, there, idn’t it?) For a long time I held a grudge against her. One day, I promised myself, I would publicly castigate her for being a shortsighted, hateful blowhard, a social media troll before there was social media, but somewhere along the way I stopped caring. Is this my long-put-off revenge against Miss Snark, then? This article? Well, over the years I HAVE managed to get paid for my writing, despite me “obviously” having no talent–I collect a weekly paycheck, in fact–and, to paraphrase a line from Bruce Springsteen, I’m still here; she’s all gone. So yeah, maybe it does count as me rubbing her face in it. But that isn’t the point of this post. What IS the point? It’s this: I have found success. I am working towards greater success. And I am gaining ground, inch by inch. However, this success did not take the shape I had originally planned. I never DID sell one of those novels. BUT…

Wait. Hold that thought.

First off, let me mention that I decided a couple’a years ago to release a novella I wrote via smashwords. THE CONFESSIONS OF SAINT CHRISTOPHER: WEREWOLF. All the money from all the sales hasn’t exactly clogged my coffers, but I really didn’t expect it to. It was as much an experiment as anything. I’m damn proud of that little book. I’d hope that you’d check it out. All the Miss Snark-like buffoons out there are invited to read it before making any assumptions about my abilities. Call my bluff. Please. I’m confident enough in my work that the prospect of opening myself up to critics doesn’t scare me one bit. I think me reaching that point, more than anything, was when I knew I’d gone over. (Wrestling terminology, for the unenlightened.)

Anyway. I’m getting there. But I’m going up the OTHER side of the mountain to do it, the opposite one from the way I had planned. The path least taken—which, thinking about it, and knowing myself, is the perfect, indeed the ONLY, way it could have happened.

Now back to the BUT.

BUT that still leaves me with those books. I’m proud of them. I’m confident in them. And I wrote them with the intent that they would be READ one day. I have decided that day has come.

I wrote this one book some time back. It’s called THERIOPHOBIA: FEAR THE BEAST. I’m ready to share it with the world. Not through some big book publisher. Not through some outlet like smashwords, which is great for what it is, but sells to a limited audience. Nope, I’m gonna release THERIOPHOBIA on the world right here, on this website, one chapter at a time. It won’t cost you nothin’ to read it except a little time. I think you’re gonna like it. Hell, screw false modesty. I KNOW you’re gonna like it, most of you. How can I say that? Because I believe in my work, sure, but also because I’m a fan just like you all, and I set out to write a book that *I* would enjoy. Stands to reason, then, that you probably will too.

Next week, right here, I will release chapter one of THERIOPHOBIA: FEAR THE BEAST. Now that I’ve made the decision to do it, I’m kinda excited.

Stay tuned.

The Evil Cheezman • June 19, 2018

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