C is for “…Think of the Children”

Tom and his wife Melanie have lived all their lives on the generation ship Santa Maria, and they’re going to die there. At first, they’re overjoyed when they find out that they’re the first couple from their generation cohort approved to have a baby. This means that their child will be the first one who’ll be around when Santa Maria reaches the end of its journey, and it gives them social capital to shake up the status quo run by the powerful Warrmos and Kennson families.

But in the months before Melanie’s due date, she and Tom get drawn into a power struggle over the fate of Santa Maria. There’s a secret hidden in the computerized records that somebody is willing to kill them for. Even Odin, the ship’s AI avatar, has been compromised. How can they be sure who to trust?

I love the plot of “Children” because of the generation starship setting, because of the deep themes of responsibility and entitlement that run through it, and I’m really excited about the thrilling suspense of Tom and Melanie’s story! I’m not ready to start shopping it around to agents just yet, but stay tuned for updates!

B is for… birds

There bird-robin-erithacus-rubeculaare a couple of birds in “The Storm Mirror.”
In that story, the witches of Arion use them to carry messages, and part of Sorina’s training as a witch is learning how to mentally and emotionally connect to birds, especially her Grandmother’s favorite, the blue bird Radamon. Radamon plays a number of roles in the story, not just a messenger but Sorina’s protector and a novelty that she shows off to Melvin.

I’d like to write a fantasy story where the main character is a shapeshifter and can transform into a bird and back. Not sure about science fiction stories involving birds. Maybe a gritty climate change saga where the main character is an ornithologist trying to save a critical bird species from extinction.

Oh, and speaking of ornithologists, I have to do a random math geek shout-out for Raymond Smullyan’s ornithological allegory of combinatorial logic: To Mock a Mockingbird.

A is for Author Blog

Hi, everybody! Welcome to my brand new author blog. Today is the first day of the 2015 A to Z challenge, so for A I’d like to talk a bit about what it means for me that this is another blog.

I blogged over at The Kelworth Files for maybe four and a half years, and I may go back and post there once I’ve got the new blog going. I had a lot of fun with that blog, talking about electronics and analyzing movie structure and sharing snippets and mostly just talking about writing.

But back in December, I came across something in a Holly Lisle How to Think Sideways lesson which made me rethink my approach to blogging. Basically, Holly said that like a lot of writers, she blogged a lot about the ups and downs of writing when she was getting started as a blogging writer, about how to write, about how tough it can be to write sometimes, about how to make your stories work. And so, the people who tended to stick around and keep reading her blog were fellow authors and writers. And she discovered that fellow authors and writers going through the same tribulations were not necessarily the best people to try to sell her stories to.

Fortunately for Holly, when she needed to keep earning money, she was able to launch some pretty cool writing courses and sell them to other writers. Check ’em out, they’re pretty cool.

Now, I don’t have a book that I’m selling yet. I don’t even have stories out in magazines that I can promote and say “Go check out such-and-such issue of this nifty magazine, I’ve got a great story in it this month!” But I do think I’m at the point where it makes sense to have a blog that is targeted to people who could become my readers, in a somewhat abstract way. What does this mean?

Here, on my author blog:

  1. I’m going to talk about the stories I’ve already come up with that I truly love.
  2. I’m going to talk about the kind of thing I love to write about.
  3. I will share snippets of my stories.

I may talk about other people’s stories that I love, and why I love them. I’m not going to talk about the process or the angst of being a writer, and I’m not going to go off-topic and blog about other stuff I love like electronics or music unless I can figure out some way to tie it into a story I’ve written.

So, welcome! Hopefully over the next month I’ll be putting up some good posts to help you figure out if you’re the reader I’m looking for.

Coming soon for the A to Z challenge

Okay, I’m Chris Kelworth and this is my author blog. Not much here yet, but I’m going to be doing a big launch with the A to Z challenge in April, so stay tuned!

Oh, and you can find some cool stuff on my old blog, The Kelworth Files. That one isn’t an author blog, so it has a lot of rambling about the writing process and other random stuff.