Saturday, July 29, 2006

Randham Acts is finally released

Canadian orders click here

Fact: My 321-page suspense novel Randham Acts is now available!


Prologue & Chapter 1

Chapter 19

Chapter 45

Try out the BlockBuster™

Synopsis: "After receiving his latest rejection letter from a fiction magazine, aspiring writer Hugh Longford purchases The BlockBuster™ plot generation software, which analyzes fiction and suggests ways to "punch up" storylines. Soon, Longford consults the BlockBuster™ about real-life problems, including a miserable co-worker who makes his job unbearable and a "ball busting" history exam threatening to derail his university career. Meanwhile, the mother of his girlfriend suffers a catastrophic nervous breakdown suggesting she might be capable of violence."

Commentary: One of my all-time favorite films is the documentary Hearts of Darkness about the making of Francis Ford Coppola's masterpiece Apocalypse Now. For anyone who believes in the ivory tower of inspiration and the sweatless creation of true art, Hearts of Darkness will shatter all of your illusions. By Coppola's own admission, he and his crew were out in the Philippine jungle with too much money, too much equipment, too much freedom, and slowly they went insane. At one point in the documentary when the production of Apocalypse Now appeared doomed by a typhoon, Martin Sheen's heart attack, Marlon Brando's shifting whims, and countless other festering problems, the interviewer asked Coppola if he ever thought about quitting the film. To which Francis Ford Coppola regarded the interviewer as though he was crazy, and said, "What? How do I quit from myself?"

And so, after 15 years and rejections from every major and minor publishing company in North America and England, my agreement with a small press publisher to finally see my novel, Randham Acts published has fallen through. The novel is too long, my demands too many, time continues to run along unflinching, money is short. Once again, I am pacing the floor of my office, a bloodied, bashed manuscript in my hands, and my hopes feeling like the Edmond Fitzgerald. But this time. This time. Fuck it. I am going to publish the novel myself, unabashedly. The films I have always loved best were born of such struggle, and ultimately produced and financed by their directors. So many of my favorite novels were the products of maniacal, unrewarded travail. More than a few of my heroes spent time in mental institutions. Many more of my heroes committed suicide.

So, I am going to treat my book like a faltering independent film. This novel has haunted me since I was twenty years old. I've spent as much time trying to forget all about it, as I have writing it. Times, years ago, as I was still developing my craft, the premise just seemed so far out of my grasp. To do justice to the idea, I had to dig so much deeper than I felt capable of doing. After putting the novel away for a few years, I unearthed it. With hundreds more books and films banging around in my consciousness since the last time I looked at it, and years more living under my belt, I took another stab at the novel. The unclimbable heights were suddenly manageable. The unbudging corners into which I'd written myself suddenly had ways out of them. More to the point, the characters came alive. After so many years of knowing my main character by one name, he finally informed me that his name was Hugh Longford. His girlfriend was Stephanie Sayer, and the quantum map of their lives and myriad collisions and near-misses of fate and circumstance finally pieced itself together.

1 comment:

Ascendantlive said...

Matt well done and congratulations, may you sell 10,0000 copies.