Brown River Queen cover art

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Into the Badlands

© Joeygil | - Man In Ruins Watching Television Photo

Fans of my blog (both of you, thanks gang) may have noticed I missed a few weeks.
I did, and I'm sorry about that. I'd like to say I just ran out of things to say, but the truth is quite the opposite -- I was full of things to say, but decided you'd probably had your share of furious rants and really didn't need another one shoved in your virtual face.
So I declared a hiatus. 
Now I'm back. No less frustrated, no less fearful, but back, and still determined not to add one iota to the miserable situation we must now all endure.
I'm also determined to detach myself from this mess somehow, to get back to work. Determined to do so, but utterly clueless as to how to accomplish this.
It seems easy enough, doesn't it? Just fire up the Beast of All Words, conjure forth Word, and start writing. 
Ah, if it was truly that simple. Because what I've been producing lately has been toxic. Even Mug and Meralda lost their spark, becoming suddenly older, wearier, bleakly cynical. And Markhat? That got so dark I deleted the last several chapters. I will not do that to my characters, or my readers. Neither deserves such treatment. 
Long I pondered. Many beers were consumed. Walls were stared upon. Much Pink Floyd was played, because if you need a soundtrack as you stare into the abyss nothing fits the bill quite like Pink Floyd.
I still haven't found any answers, aside from the flippant one I cited earlier -- fire up the Beast of All Words, conjure forth Word, and start writing. Again.
It may well be that the only way out of my mental morass is through it. I may have to let Mug and Meralda and Markhat and Darla have time and space to work through this, just as I do. Which will mean delays in getting new stuff out. But I suppose that's preferable to never getting anything new out at all.
I have at least decided I won't quit. No matter what strange shape the world takes on in the next several years, people will still, I hope, want books. I hope they'll still need stories in which good triumphs over evil. I want to believe people will still want to cheer on heroes. 
I won't quit until I stop believing all that is true. I hope that day never comes.
So, if you're  out there, and you're worried too, you're not alone. And if you've found a way to regain some sense of hope, please, email me the recipe. I could certainly use a fresh batch right now.


  1. Keep believing, Frank. After the initial grieving and swearing, I start to think of things I can DO that will make the world better. Especially my bit of the world. Starting a local Resistance cell, for example.

  2. Place 70 percent chocolate in crockpot with cream. Melt chocolate and cream, stirring until well blended. Spear bananas, apples, orange slices, and strawberries on fondue forks. DIP IN CHOCOLATE. When sufficiently doused in chocolate, EAT. The strawberries are especially good for your mental state and the chocolate only enhances the nutritional value. Do this for several days, alternating with long walks and pretty soon, you'll feel better!