Writing Is A Journey, Not A Process

My friend Victoria Adams recently asked us, What IS a writing process?

A loaded question, for there are many meanings of the word “process.” Most all of which imply the rational and the mechanical, as opposed to human creativity.

Do we say “I’ll process that information,” or “I’ll think about it”?

One of the few phrases using the word “process” which implies human involvement is, of course, the editorial process. The second novel of my Vampire Syndrome saga, “Vampire Conspiracy”, will soon be ‘processed’ in this manner. Most of you would think my use of the word “processed” in the previous sentence to be a misnomer, and in spirit you are right. The fearless editors at PDMI will dig their fangs into Vampire Conspiracy, in a ceaseless search for the tiniest of continuity errors and the like. Professional editing arguably has the most intimate human involvement of anything referred to as a “process.”

So where does that leave writing?

Inspiration, and the act of first creation, are the antithesis of the finite, physical world we live in. The act of writing fiction literally creates new worlds that our minds could never visit otherwise. Worlds which lived only in the mind of one author before they were published have gone on to capture the imaginations of millions. The words written by fiction authors have opened readers’ minds to essential truths they never would have realized from any other way.

Can a computer’s processor accomplish any of that?

Actually, yes, when it is used as a conduit for the words humans create. Most published authors now begin their creative works when they enter their precious words onto computer hard drives. Words can now exist as nothing but digital bits and bytes as they navigate their path between the author’s typing and the readers’ devices. Processed at both ends, for the mutual enjoyment of humanity.

So, yes, our words are processed. But the creative impetus behind their creation is anything but a mechanical, rational, logical process. Fiction, our dreams and aspirations in print, is the essence of what makes us human, and a driving force of change in the world’s culture.

When I recollect the twists and turns my life has taken since I conceived the Vampire Syndrome saga back in 2009, the cold, hard, mechanical associations of the word “process” are not what I recall. I think of the friends I have made, the readers I have touched, the work I do with PDMI behind the scenes. I have found my calling on this journey, and my soul. And that is what my writing means to me.

The worlds we authors create live not just in our heads, but within all who are privileged enough to read them. I would like to introduce to you three other authors whose worlds I have been privileged to visit, through the power of their pages.

J.D. Brown knows that vampires exist because she’s dating one and no, he doesn’t sparkle. Unfortunately, he’s not immortal either (or maybe her standards are too low). A magnet for subcultures and weirdness, J.D. was that socially awkward girl with more fictional friends than real ones. As a child battling a hearing loss and a medical condition with no name, J.D. found comfort in books where strong women always saved the day and got the guy. An obsession with Charmed, Sabrina the Teenage Witch and Buffy the Vampire Slayer lead J.D. to believe that her mutated chromosome made her something more, not something less. Thus her stubborn flare to persevere was born. A lover of fine cuisine, coffee, and shoes. She resides in Wisconsin were she writes urban fantasy—aka vampires for adults—and has political debates with her dogs. She loves to hear from fans and is active on Facebook.com/AuthorJDBrown and on Twitter @AuthorJDBrown.

One day, Emily Guido conceived an idea of two characters who needed to have their story told. Not ever dreaming a week later, she would have over 100,000 words written. Emily’s creation became “Charmeine,” the first novel in “The Light-Bearer Series”, featuring an ill-fated hero, Tabbruis, and the heroine, Charmeine. A couple who would literally go through Heaven and Hell to be together. Their story is a star-crossed relationship where love conquers all, with some paranormal thrown in for spice.
When Emily writes, it is similar to you or I watching a movie. She pictures the characters in her head going through vivid descriptions of each scene. There are so many nuances going through her mind that she cannot type fast enough.
In August of 2012, Emily accepted a publishing contract with PDMI Publishing. She is very excited to see her books flourishing under their direction.
Visit Emily at http://www.emilyguido.com and her Facebook Author Page. Follow her on Twitter at @Emily__Guido.

Clay Gilbert has been hearing the voices of aliens, vampires, and people from the future since about the age of four. It wasn’t long before he started to think taking notes on what they said might be a good idea. This has led him many places—through the halls and classrooms of many schools, where he’s been both in front of the teacher’s desk and behind it, himself—to presenter’s podiums at conventions, and, most often, to the comfortable chair behind his writing desk at home, where he uses his Dell computer as both a beacon and a translator for the voices that still find their way through from countless worlds and planes of existence. These days, the place he calls home is Knoxville, Tennessee, where his cat, Bella, and his ball python, Andy, keep him company between visits from a teenaged alien named Annah, an undead, blood-drinking English professor named Martin Cabot, and a boy from the future named Eternity. And it’s a good thing, too—life is busy. And Clay’s still taking notes.
Read Clay Gilbert’s musings on life at http://portalsandpathways.wordpress.com/, and Annah’s musings on life at http://childrenofevohe.com/.
Follow Clay on Twitter @ClayGilbert1 (he loves new followers!)

The blog posts which inspired this:

Rhonda Little (who started this blog loop!):

Andrea Zug (who tagged me!):

Cindy Koepp:

Elizabeth Mueller:

Victoria Adams:

PDMI presents Paranormal Christmas

Print ad for December issue of Affaire de Coeur magazine.

Thank you to everyone at PDMI!

Third Anniversary, with my special guest Clay Gilbert

Hello everyone!

Today, October 16th, 2013 marks the third anniversary of Vampire Syndrome blog. So, to commemorate this wondrous occasion, I will celebrate in the most logical fashion.

By featuring another author. 😈

Clay Gilbert, and his new book, Annah (Children of Evohe (Book 1).

The reason why this makes perfect sense: Two months after this blog celebrated its second anniversary, “Vampire Syndrome” was signed by PDMI Publishing. A milestone from which the repercussions are still unfolding. “Changed my life” is almost an understatement, and far more will happen by the time this blog marks its fourth anniversary on October 16, 2014.

Over the past year, I have come to know Clay Gilbert as not just an author, but a friend. He and I share the bonds of rapier-wit rhetoric, rock/metal appreciation and giving voice to characters of extraterrestrial origin. Annah, Clay’s child of planet Evohe, gets to revel in her center-stage role of main character and protagonist while my Pures from planet Sek’Met hide in the shadows as supporting characters.

Annah Cover


Annah, a young female of a world on the Edge of the Sea of Stars named Evohe, feels there is no place for her among her people.  She is seen as strange both for her appearance, which is different than that thought to be normal for an eighteen-cycle old seed-maiden, and for her dreams, not of finding a mate and making a homeplace and a family with him, but of exploring the Sea of Stars that she looks up at every night and longs to see.  Her parents lie at rest in the Elder Grove deep in the woods near her homeground, and, since the passing of Lilliane, the elder who had been her guardian since she was fourteen cycles old, Annah has lived alone; the ‘girl who walks with no one.’
She remains alone until the night she sees a great fire streak from the starry sky above her parents’ homeground and, following its path, finds the wreckage of what she knows from the shared Memories of her people is a star-vessel of the sort her own people had once traveled in.  Inside the ruined craft, she finds a human male, badly injured and close to death.  Torn between the Memories that tell her the people of Earth were responsible for the near-extinction of her own world and the voice of Spirit that insists all life is the same, she nurses him back to health, finding in the human Gary Holder a mirror of her own search for belonging and desire for a larger purpose. Their growing connection, and the Evoetians’ sense of humans as enemies, sets in motion a chain of events that may either destroy Annah’s world a second time, or lead to a new future of understanding:  a new age of the Shapers.

“Annah” is the first novel in Clay Gilbert’s science-fiction series “Children of Evohe”, published by Rara Avis, an imprint of PDMI Publishing. “Annah” was released on October 15, 2013, to be followed by “Annah’s Exile” in 2014 and Children of Evohe in 2015.

Annah’s World is the official site for the “Children of Evohe” series, and has a character blog featuring Annah’s own commentary about her world and her people, designed to fill in narrative gaps before and between the volumes of the series.

Meet Clay Gilbert:

Clay Bio

Clay Gilbert lives and works in Knoxville, Tennessee, where he divides his time between writing, teaching English for Strayer University, and working across the electronic sea of the Internet as the Chief Editor for PDMI Publishing. He believes, as Annah does, that it takes many notes to make up the Song of the World, and that the understanding of differences between people, nations and cultures holds perhaps the most important key to the future. This book, he hopes, will help make a difference in that. He shares his living and writing space with his cat, Bella, and his ball python, Andy. He is currently at work on “Annah’s Exile”, Book Two of the “Children of Evohe” trilogy, coming soon from PDMI.

If MY vampires drove Volvos…

Volvo 122 wagon rod

1960’s Volvo 122 wagon

If you want to read about a cool vampire with a cool Volvo, look no further than Dark Road to Paradise (Tales of the Night-Kind)