The Next Big Thing Blog Post

On January 19, 2013 by pampi

By ta547726_10151911004075034_469747634_nsgging me to write a Next Big Thing Blog Post, Carolyn Zaikowski, writer and poet, graciously opened this game, in which authors get to talk about their favorite thing- their work, and what their current Work in Progress is, to an as yet unpublished and potential writer. You can read about Carolyn’s new book in progress, an experimental novel called A Child Is Being Killed, over here at her blog. Upon reading her post, I was very moved by her history, her commitment to relating what she knows of the unfathomable circumstances in which so many people live, and honored she thought to tag me.

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My Next Best Thing:

What is the working title of your book?

Snake ate the Moon

snakeMoonStoryTeller copy

Where did the idea come from for the book?

The idea for the book came from a poem I wrote early last year. The poem swept me up in images. I immediately knew I had to illustrate it and began considering the graphic novel medium. I am a digital mixed media performance artist and poet, so this sort of impulse is not unusual. Typically, when I illustrate my poems, I write the poem on the page in ink, and then, depending on the feel of the poem, illustrate a moment from the poem in pastel, ink or acrylic. In line with techniques most illustrators adopt in composing their images, I began the project by collaging images I found online. It was when I began digital painting over them that I was moved to purposely keep all the layers transparent; thereby, keeping the image-making process evident. In my mind, this layering of the digital found art as a method to inform this new work alludes to the historical and current representations of desire, love, and heartache. Somehow this process serves to place this poem as both the latest and one of many stories pondering love in our world today.

Snake ate the Moon was originally conceived as graphic poem meant to be read as a bedtime story. In the tradition of newspaper serials of yore, I originally released a few lines of the illustrated poem in nightly installments over facebook as a hook for an art event I was hosting.

Moreover, as I developed the visual look and feel of this poem, I recognized that I designed a self contained world. The next logical step was to bind these images into a book, but something about the loss of digital luminosity in paper form cautioned me to consider other ideas.

I wondered what other ways I might present the story. I experimented with a scrolling digital zine app; I projected the images onto walls while a cellist improvised; I even began wondering whether it might be possible to design a 2D game that may be played as an application on portable devices.

Today, I continue to explore various multi-media channels through which I might broadcast the story.

What genre does your book fall under?

I believe the form I’m pitching in this post is a form of book art – a digital invocation to the graphic poem, depicting a Gothic neo-primal epic of miniature proportions.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

In my dreaming mind, a graphic poem is a hop, skip, and a lot of work away from the animated film. I would cast an unknown female actor with a youthful tender passionate voice and confessional tone.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Snake ate the Moon follows a female narrator, observing that the moon is swallowed by a snake, flying through the sky, and how she might reclaim the moon and tame the beast.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

Recommendations for publishers, game designers, 2D animation artists welcome!

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

The poem took a month to write. I’ve been working on illustrating the 80-odd images for a little over a year. The images take about an hour to draft, and I still have around thirty more to produce.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

Snake ate the Moon is “Where wild things are” all grown up; it is a heroine’s journey, but unlike Theseus’ tragic end, there is redemption here; it paces like Princess Mononoke, but instead of the natural world becoming fantastical, nature is wondrous, all-encompassing, and enough; it is motif-based, mythic, fable-like, and rooted in magical realism – all the best stuffs of my childhood and adolescent reading excursions.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?

When I am lucky, I am teaching youth. It is really for them I write this affirming love story full of the precariousness and redemptive qualities of that journey we take towards loving.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

Did I mention the graphics are sensual, even erotic?

Snake ate the Moon may be a visual feast indulged as a bad romance; yet, it brings the reader out of the somnambulant clutches of a dark fantasy world into light and hope.

Thanks again to Carolyn for tagging me

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And Now, for those I have tagged:

Please tune into these writers’ blogs the week of January 25-February 1 to hear about what they’re up to:

Karin Webb, dynamic performer, director, artist, writer, and UnAmerika’s Sweetheart, will be discussing some of her performance work.

Also, I invited some writer friends and found they are already invited and planning to post! Check them out too:

This same week as me:

Eric Sasson, author of the sardonic and hysterical short story collection, “Margins of Tolerance,”will be discussing his new book project.

In two weeks:

Jade Sylvan, riveting poet, songwriter, nonfiction writer, and performer will be discussing her new project.

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Message for the tagged authors and interested others:

Rules of the Next Big Thing
***Use this format for your post
***Answer the ten questions about your current WIP (work in progress)
***Tag five other writers/bloggers and add their links so we can hop over and meet them.

Ten Interview Questions for the Next Big Thing:
What is your working title of your book?
Where did the idea come from for the book?
What genre does your book fall under?
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
Include the link of who tagged you and this explanation for the people you have tagged.

Be sure to line up your five people in advance.

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