Novel update

I guess I should give an update on my novel. It is the most asked question I get these days and so I figure it’s only fair to shed some light on where it’s at and where it’s going.

I started work on it a few years ago (or pretty damn close to), and it still has a ways to go. I did hit a big milestone back in late summer/early fall of last year when I finished the first draft. I was proud to have gotten that far, but I also knew that there was going to be a lot of work ahead of me.

I’m not going to bore you with the details, but the cliff notes version is this: I kept changing what happens in the book. Because of those changes, huge sections of the novel which I had already written, became irrelevant to the story and were cut out. This indecisiveness has resulted in a patchwork collection of words that is a complete mess. Needless to say, I had become very discouraged.

It wasn’t until the end of last December (as in about a month ago!) that I finally came to terms with the story I am trying to tell. All decisions have been made. There is finally, once again, a clear direction. It’s time to start a new draft of the book (draft #4 for those keeping score). For this draft, I am just adding in those final elements I am missing and smoothing the edges on the other additions. From there, I will start cleaning it up heavily and preparing it for the editor.

…Just not right now.

For the immediate future, I thought it best to set the novel down for a couple months. I’ve been working on it in one way or another for years and I think it’ll help tremendously to come back for this 4th draft with a fresh mind.

That doesn’t mean I’m not writing anything, as I’m currently chugging away on the crime novella for Adventure Worlds Press that I mentioned in an earlier post a couple weeks ago. And more importantly, it doesn’t mean I’m abandoning the novel. I truly believe that it will be a scary book and can’t wait for everybody to read it! I just want to make sure it is everything I know it can be before I release it on the world.

-C

Driving Through Time

By Christian Laforet

Grant hammered the gas pedal. Thankfully, there wasn’t much traffic on the Trans-Canada Highway heading towards Manitoba. The broken yellow line stretched out in front of him like an endless snake—a beast with no head. Aware of the cell phone sitting on the passenger seat, every few seconds he would tap the screen with his finger. The time appeared in bold—7:46 p.m., EST. That was not set in stone though. Soon he would pass into the Central Standard Time Zone and the numbers on his phone would flip back exactly one hour.

The sweat, breaking out along his forehead for the last thirty minutes, felt cold and abrasive on his skin. He wiped it away with his sleeve, but knew it would come back.

Flying past a sign announcing the upcoming border, Grant reminisced again about what his Grandpa told him when he was a kid. Continue reading

Digital Death (Pt. 6)

Level 6: The last Boss!

We’ve made it all the way to present day (approximately). I’m happy to report that there are now more horror games than ever. It’s like everybody finally realized that the horror genre is ripe for the picking when it comes to video games. So…fuck yeah!

Alright, before I get super current, I need to go back a few years for this first one. The game came out on the PS3, but I didn’t play it until just recently on the PS4.

The Last of Us (2013)

I’m about to say something that may cause people to roll their eyes, but I don’t give a squirt. The Last of Us is as good a story, both in acting and content, as any movie I have ever seen. Never, in all my years of gaming, have I been so emotionally involved in the characters I was playing as. Joel and Ellie’s (the above mentioned characters) story is touching, chilling, tragic, loving, and everything in-between. Continue reading

Book Launch aftermath

The book launch was a big success! We (me and Ben) had high hopes for the launch and I think they were exceeded.

The idea for the launch was to treat the event a little more like a record release and less a book launch. A lot of the book launches we’ve been to lately are either a) very dry and boring or b) have large gaps in the programing where people are standing around doing nothing. So to combat that we did two things. First, we had it in a bar (booze!) and second we had live music. That way, during those moments where we were off signing books, there was still something for people to do (get drunk and listen to music). It worked like a charm.

One thing worth mentioning was the utter success that was having a limited edition cover of the book available at the launch. This cover (limited to 50 copies) would be exclusive to the launch. I wasn’t sure how that would go over, but since we sold out of them that night, it went pretty damn great. I can’t remember who exactly thought of the idea for the limited cover, but I’m pretty sure we’ll be doing it from now on.

The book has continued to do well over the course of the week as well. In the first six days, we’ve already sold nearly a hundred copies. I’m pretty sure, with the upcoming signings and conventions, we’ll be through the first printing of No Light Tomorrow by summer (500 copies). Which, for a little book of science fiction stories, is not bad.

As promised last post, here’s some pics. (for all those wondering, I’m the fat guy)

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The Comic Book SyndiCon and Twisted Studio

The Comic Book Syndicon is coming (Sunday, Aug. 16th, to be precise). It is being held at St. Clair college in conjunction with their own family fun day event. It should be a great day for the whole family (comics, collectables, cosplay and more!). The best part is, it’s free admission!

I’ll be there selling copies of my book, but I won’t be alone. I’ll be sharing a table with comic writer Dave Rocha (The Underground and Tecumseh) from Twisted Studio!

Check out the poster below for the con, and for more on Dave, hit up his website right here: http://www.twistedstudio.ca

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From the Page to the Stage…again

A couple months ago (May 12th to be exact) I was privileged enough to have one of my stories, Relict (found here: http://adventureworldsblog.com/2014/08/25/relict/  ), preformed by the theatre group Sho Art, Spirit and Performance. Although people are always reading my stories, it is quite rare to hear one read back to me, especially in a theatrical sort of way, so as you can imagine, it was a real thrill for me.

I guess my twisted tale left an impression on the group as they have decided to tackle another one of my stories. This time, they are doing one of my favorites, Summer’s Friend, which can be found in the Space Between Houses collection.

So if you are free on Tuesday, July 14th at 8pm, then head over to 1078 Drouillard Ave and be entertained. (Also, just an fyi, they serve wine and beer!)10997282_10153232997512556_2357815467399740737_n

Cover Contest!

No Light Tomorrow needs a book cover!

From June 17 – Aug 1, 2015, Authors Christian Laforet and Ben Van Dongen will be accepting submissions for the cover art for their newest book, No Light Tomorrow. No Light Tomorrow is a collection of five speculative tales. Space travel, strange visitors, technological nightmares, unexplainable phenomenon and new worlds await within its pages. To Enter:

  • Create an original and interesting image built around the name and ideas of the book. The artwork must be the property of the submitter.
  • Upload a clear picture of your cover art design and send to adventureworldsblog@gmail.com by the deadline date.

The winner will:

  • Have their cover published.
  • Receive explicit acknowledgement in the book.
  • Receive complimentary copies of No Light Tomorrow
  • Win $50 cash

By submitting any design for the cover of the book titled “No Light Tomorrow”, you automatically agree to the following. (Please don’t submit anything if you don’t agree).

  • I acknowledge that there may be many cover designs submitted, and that the final choice may be similar to that which I submitted.
  • I acknowledge that the final book cover may include concepts that appear similar to those that I submit.
  • I acknowledge and accept that if my design is chosen, the authors can use the design in any way in the promotion and sales of the book.
  • I acknowledge that my image (if selected) may be altered to better fit the needs of the cover.
  • I acknowledge that even if my image is selected, it may not end up being used as the final cover for the book. In this instance, I will still receive the cash prize of $50
  • I waive any claims that I may have against Christian Laforet and Ben Van Dongen with regard to the design I have submitted to illustrate the cover of the book “No Light Tomorrow”, including any claims of invasion of privacy, violation of right of publicity, libel or copyright infringement.

Hey, I’m Writing a Novel (pt. 3)

“Technology can be our best friend, and technology can also be the biggest party pooper of our lives. It interrupts our own story, interrupts our ability to have a thought or a daydream, to imagine something wonderful, because we’re too busy bridging the walk from the cafeteria back to the office on the cell phone”

-Stephen Spielberg

Like my good friend Steve says, cell phones are not always the best thing in the world, and when it comes to writing horror, they are pretty much the worst.

Imagine if you will, what some of our favourite horror stories would look like with the simple addition of a cell phone.

Cujo.

“Hello, animal control? Yeah, this is Donna Trenton calling. So, listen, I’m at the Camber house…yeah, that’s them, and anyways, there’s a big ass dog running around out here. Oh, good! I was worried there for a minute. I’ll just stay in my car until you get here. Thanks.”

Nightmare on Elm St.

Tina: It was so scary, Nancy. He was all burned up and had knives for hands.

Nancy: Cray cray! Let me look that up.

Nancy googles it on her phone.

Nancy: Well, when I put in all that stuff, I got a bunch of newspaper articles about some creepy pedo that used to live around here. It says he disappeared or something when we were just little kids. Hold on, maybe my mom knows something.

Nancy texts her mom.

Ma do you know a guy named freddy kruger????

OMG I haven’t heard that name in years. Me and the other parents killed him 🙂

Thx TTYL

Nancy: Yeah, our parents totally killed him. I guess he found a way into our dreams. Hold on, I’m gonna look up dream therapy.

The Blair Witch Project

“I threw that fucking map into the river!”

“No worries, my phone has GPS.”

That’s just a few. But basically, every classic horror story would be radically different if they had cell phones in them. Part of what makes horror stories great is that nothing is convenient for the protagonist. And if there is one thing that cell phones are, is convenient. The other thing cell phones are, is plentiful. You can’t throw a stone these days without hitting a person talking/texting/surfing/tweeting/snap-chatting/etc. on a cell phone.

While planning my novel, I quickly realized that the story wouldn’t work if there was even one operational cell phone (seriously, the story would end at chapter 2!). Luckily, there was already a plot point in place that could easily explain why the cell phones in the story would be rendered useless.

Still though, this whole cell phone thing had weighed on my mind so much that I even considered (for a short time) changing the time period of the novel to take place in the 80’s. It would be very easy to do and wouldn’t change the overall story that much. But, on the flipside, having it set thirty years ago wouldn’t do anything to serve the novel either (other than not having to deal with modern technology). So, after a bit of consideration, as well as getting the opinion of fellow writer Ben Van Dongen (who is hard a work on his own debut novel. Check out his trials and tribulations here: https://benwltp.wordpress.com/ ) I decided to just deal with the damn things, because the fact is, we can’t put the cellular genie back into the bottle.

Novel: Untitled

Word count: 11400

Chapters: 10