A full year has passed since I last updated this place.
Not that it ever had this overwhelming crowd of regular visitors — this is certainly not the kind of site you check every day — but I thought it was time to write an update for the people out there who appreciate my writing and my fiction in particular.
It’s been a rough year
The loss of my father in November 2017 was devastating for me. Apart from an early period of intense prolificness, my creative inspiration and output have always been of an ebb-and-flow nature. In the months preceding my dad’s passing, this creative tide had already begun to ebb, and that terrible event just froze everything — I was unable to write a single line of fiction for a few months. Despite the physical distance between us, his presence contributed a lot to my internal balance as a person. Despite his worsening health, I kept feeling protected, in a sense. Like when you’re away on a mission, but you know someone trustworthy is holding the fort, literally and figuratively. So you can afford not to worry about a certain subset of things and can focus on other worries.
His passing created a huge void and had a generally destabilising effect on me. Now there was this pounding, pulsating grief for his loss; now there was this new set of things to take care of and worry about (helping my mother, first and foremost, since she isn’t in good shape either), on top of the usual everyday stuff that brings worry and stress.
In this picture, my inspiration basically flatlined — there was suddenly no time for creative writing, but more importantly no time to even think about something to write, ideas for short stories, ideas to move forward with Low Fidelity or any of my smaller series like Off the Grid or Ian Charles Winterman. According to a timeline I had drawn in early 2017, I should have already published Minigrooves Vol. 3. The truth is, I’ve only jotted down a rough draft of the first short story.
The flow returns
Little by little, in recent weeks, I’ve felt my creative juices come back. Nothing spectacular, but way better than nothing at all. I have tried to force my way back into my own different writing projects by re-reading a lot of previously-written material, to rekindle the connection with my works, revisit characters and plots, and situations left hanging.
Current projects: an overview
Low Fidelity — (What is Low Fidelity?) The first book of the series is almost over. I’m writing Chapter 25 of the planned 32, but it’s not a fixed number, and if the story reaches the point I want it to reach in fewer chapters, so be it. I’ve stopped trying to make predictions and promises, but hopefully the book will be published within the next months, and before the end of the year. My intention is to publish it on the Apple Books and Amazon platforms, like my Minigrooves short stories, but I would also like to produce a traditional paper edition. If you know of affordable online services for this kind of operation, do let me know.
Minigrooves Vol. 3 — I have no idea when it will come out. The short story is still my favourite, congenial format of creative writing, and when I’m inspired it typically doesn’t take too long for me to write a bunch of stories. Realistically, though, I don’t expect to publish Volume 3 before 2019. At this moment, my science fiction novel Low Fidelity has precedence. For Volume 3 I’m exploring the possibility of writing a series of short stories based on a common theme.
Off the Grid — (What is Off the Grid?) I’m currently working on Episode 06 – Exposed in the light. It should be published here soon.
The Ian Charles Winterman series — This is a series of short stories that focus on the character of Ian Charles Winterman, a consultant detective with a unique gift — a sort of heightened perceptiveness that allows him to have special insights and intuitions, and help the police force specifically in cases of abductions and missing persons.
Ian Charles Winterman is first introduced in a much shorter story, The Vanished, that appeared on Volume 2 of Minigrooves. I wrote The Vanished in March 2014, and initially it was just one of the different stories that would be included in the second volume of Minigrooves, but then I liked the premise and the characters, and started thinking about a whole series of cases involving Winterman. The first three stories were featured in ‘Single Special’ issues of my digital magazine, Vantage Point, which I produced between 2014 and 2016. I’m currently working on the fourth, and I plan to republish the series here and in a more portable ebook format.
Consider supporting my writing
This past year and a half has been a struggle, and morale has suffered. I know that today, unless you give frequent updates and showcase a generally prolific output, it doesn’t seem like you’re producing that much. But just because my first two books of short stories have been published in 2013 and 2016 respectively, it doesn’t mean they’re ‘old’. If you like what I write, if you’ve been enjoying what little I’ve published here for free, if you appreciate my more tech-oriented musings on my main website Morrick.me, or my explorations in vintage Macs and software at System Folder; or if you just like me and want to help, consider checking out my fiction and purchase my Minigrooves short stories, or send your contribution via PayPal. It’s truly appreciated.