Slubes Update: The Time is Near!

WHEN LAST WE LEFT OUR WRITERY HERO… er, wait. What was the last update I said? Probably “I’ll have something substantial later”. Well I will. And I do. Slubes is written, edited, re-edited, re-re-edited, formatted, formatted 2.0, and at this point pretty much all I have to do to consider it complete is get the physical proof book in the mail (should be here in a week or so) and make sure it looks good. Before this month is over, I should have a release date!

In the weeks leading up to that release date, I will… probably work on Darmenzi. I never stop working. *plays video games for several hours* What was I talking about? Oh, yeah. When the book releases, I’ll probably have a special release video stream where I read from the book and talk about it and such. More details on that closer to the release date, of course. I’ll also talk about it on Twitter and make some posts here, and I’ll post some excerpts from the completed version of Slubes. On that note, check the end of this post for the first-ever look at the completed for reals this time final version of Slubes.

Before we get to that, though, a few other notes: I’m working on some special projects, updating some things, and other odds and ends. I may be changing a few things around here, whether here means at the DOCC website or my Patreon, since this post goes up at both places. And has anyone seen my new profile image? I sure do look weird! If I’m forgetting anything important I’ll say it later, for right now let’s just get to watching as some slube wakes up.

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Four Years and a Site Addition!

Four years ago I sat down, opened up Word, and typed a sentence that no longer exists due to editing. That sentence began my first actual novel, Slubes. From the early start of last decade when I wanted to make video games to realizing I far preferred writing from extensive storytelling collaborating with friends on the internet, I decided that novels were what I really wanted to do. So I wrote one. February 21st, 2010 (according to my records), I began writing Slubes.

On August 6th, I finished the first draft. It was awful. With help from my friends, I made it into what it is today. Or, well, what it was on June 4th, 2013, when I published it. Which is basically the same thing now; I did make some minor edits not too long ago.

Anyway, in honor of this, I’m putting something on my site that I should have done when Slubes first came out: You can now read a free preview of Slubes on this site by going to the Novels section of the site or by clicking here. This is more or less the same amount available on Smashwords, but now it’s someplace more tied directly to me. Like I said, I should’ve done that when the book first came out, and forthcoming books will have the same type of preview available when they come out.

That’s all I got today. See you in April for the 1-year anniversary of when I finished Slubes!

Remember that stream I mentioned a few days ago??

The stream is up on Youtube now! Watch as I awkwardly try to speak above the buzzing of my microphone, causing me to breathe loudly and into the mic and turn into a hurricane!

What fun!

(I suggest watching it on full screen so you can actually read the chat I added to the side there, unless you don’t give two cares about the chat, which is understandable given not much happens in it.)

Character Profile: The Conqueror

The main antagonist of my new novel (released today!) Slubes is an intergalactic tyrant who travels the cosmos and conquers worlds–as the name suggests. With four long tentacles and a rather small body, the vast amount of his mass comes from a giant, menacing, bulbous head that lets him tower over most anyone and glare at them with his teardrop-shaped eyes. Also, the back of his head is replaced with a glass case, so you can see his brain!

The Conqueror is a megalomaniac, sure, but he also has a high belief in his qualifications for rule. That is, he’s really smart. He’s calculating and scheming, but quick to anger. Everyone is below him—even if he has respect for someone, they’re still below him in his eyes (of course it helps that he’s taller than a lot of people).

The Conqueror is the instigator of these events; he comes to Mintop in a scouting space station to examine the planet before he launches a full invasion. In scanning the planet, he comes across a crystal with a vast amount of energy contained within. His plans to take it for himself go awry, though, but he doesn’t intend to let such a powerful artifact slip from his grasp.

My novel is out now—you can read all about The Conqueror’s plans and how the trio of slubes face them by getting it here! Before you do, though, here’s one more excerpt:

The rebels yelped; they were grabbed by The Conqueror’s long tentacles and pulled away. He held the four rebels each in one tentacle.

“You thought you could rebel against The Great Conqueror!?” shouted The Great Conqueror as he held them at eye level.

“I thought you were just ‘The Conqueror’,” a rebel said with all the cheek a creature without cheeks could muster.

“Great or not, you have made a fatal mistake,” The Conqueror told it. Every previous attempt to rebel against him had failed, and the resulting public torture… It led to a stronger grip on the planet that saw the torture. But for a spleech to try and rebel…

“So… you’re not actually great?” asked the rebel.

…and then try to mock him!? The Conqueror tightened his grip on that rebel and threatened, “I would watch what you say, for there is nothing stopping me from squeezing the life out of you.” He suspected there were more rebels and would need to interrogate these four. However, one less captive would not matter…

While this exchange was going on, one of the rebels freed its mechanical tentacle. The end of it opened and shot out a bomb. It exploded, blasting the control panel apart.

“NO!” cried The Conqueror. The computer smoked and fell silent, ceasing all activity.

The spleech began working furiously to get a status update on the crystal. “We’re losing visual on the crystal, sir!”

“Power signals decreasing!”

“They’re spreading out!”

“Crystal gem entering Mintop atmosphere!”

“Sir! It appears the crystal is breaking apart in the atmosphere!”

“What!?” The screen before them showed dots on the map of Mintop. Each dot marked where the crystal landed after breaking up. “This rather multiplies the problem, then…”

“Sorry, Conqueror,” said the cheeky rebel, “but your crystal is in another ca-” The Conqueror cut it off by tightening his grip again.

The Conqueror ordered in some guards. “Lock these rebels up. Interrogate them. Find out who else dares to go against the might of The Conqueror.” He wanted to interrogate them himself, but he now had more pressing concerns. Turning to the spleech at the computers, he said, “Find those shards! This isn’t over! I will have that crystal!”

Character Profile: Cherry

The third main character in this novel called Slubes is Cherry, a 23-year old slube. She’s the only one of the three born and raised in Nottle, yet despite being from the quietest hometown she’s the most outgoing. She has a real gusto for life and wants to get out and find excitement. Although I often refer to her as the competent one, she can be rash and doesn’t always look before she leaps. She’s confident in all areas except for her father (although, quite frankly, the same could be said for him).

For most of her life she’s been restrained by her ever-worried father, a situation that has caused tension between them. She was allowed to take karate lessons when she was younger, but for the rest of the time he’s been overprotective. In going out on this adventure, she hopes to show her father that she can take care of herself, although hopefully he doesn’t have a nervous breakdown from it.

She’s also the one to have done research on the origins of the crystal—legends of a demon ravaging the islands that Zeth believes to be nonsense. Whatever’s really going on, these three heroes are out to get to the bottom of it—but the answer really lies at the top. In three days my novel comes out, and on that day I will post an introduction to the instigator of this crisis and our protagonist.

For now, have another excerpt.

Character Profile: Professor Zeth

The second main character of Slubes is a slube 32 years old; he’s an inventor, an engineer, and a slube of science, although his status as an actual Professor is somewhat ambiguous. Hailing from a major city on an island north of Nottle, he is somewhat worldlier than the other two main characters, aside from the fact he’s kind of a scatterbrained goof-up and his competency is sometimes called into question. He’s always got a chipper attitude, though, and is a whiz at mechanics—he just doesn’t have much common sense.

In Slubes, he’s been living in Nottle in obscurity, studying the crystal at the focus of the novel. It’s he who brings the others together to rebuild it after it shatters, and it’s he who has the transportation they need to do so in a timely matter. The Transpide is a vehicle of his own design fitted with gadgets and gizmos to help them on their way—it’s just lacking some very important features like rear-view mirrors!

Excerpt after the break!

Character Profile: Numer

Hey, it’s time to formally introduce the players in this crazy novel! I’ll be making these posts every few days until I’ve gone through all the primary characters; this will actually go on past the publication date.

The main character of the novel Slubes is Numer: a slube, 23 years old (average lifespan of a slube is 80 years). A few years ago he moved to the village of Nottle for a quiet life. So much for that. He has a nervous disposition exacerbated by his own self-doubts. I guess he has a strong heart, though, since he goes on the insane escapade of Slubes in order to help his new friends. In fact, his heart probably overpowered his mind to get him to do it.

He’s introduced in the novel via a dream, because he’s sleeping. Past noon. Which is what puts him on the path to being the happenstance hero. Could anyone else have taken his place? Well, Nottle is a quiet town—there probably isn’t anyone else who could take his place, but even if they did, he probably wouldn’t let them. He’s got his reasons. His glaringly obvious reasons. (At least obvious when you read the book!)

And now an excerpt starring Numer:

Yay excerpt!

And Now, a Brief Glimpse at Doom

With two weeks until the release of my novel, Slubes, here’s an excerpt from early on in my novel, Slubes. It involves DOOOOOM or something

 

As they continued their conversation, Cherry looked up into the sky, blue and clear with but a single cloud.

Suddenly the sky flashed, like a sheet of lightning radiating out above the town. “Hey, hey, hey,” Cherry said, interrupting Paige and Gern; “what’s that?” They looked up. The sky flashed again, repeating at a quicker pace.

The flashing intensified. Light from the sun distorted. The rest of the town took notice, looking up at the phenomenon. They were unsure of what to make of it…

A giant, crackling pillar appeared like a second sun shooting down towards Nottle. It was falling towards the very center of town. There sat a pear-shaped, crystalline gem the size of a slube. The pillar’s light shined off the dark gray gem in a rainbow of colors.

With a deafening boom, the pillar slammed into the crystal. A shattering, reverberating screech like high-pitched thunder flooded Nottle.

The townspeople went into a panic. They were under attack! The pillar was like a vacuum, pulling things towards it. Everyone fled for their homes, trying to not get pulled in, their screams drowned out by the screech.

The crystal was ripped up from the ground it was in and drawn into the pillar. The surrounding soil broke up as it was also pulled up. By now the entire market, all of Nottle seemed empty as a ghost town… Everyone had hidden in their homes as the crystal was lifted up into the sky…

 

Check back this Sunday as I begin to introduce the main characters of Slubes one by one.

A Note from an Author

You may have read that last post, got to the end, and thought “what is going on, why did the font change, who is the narrator arguing with”. (And you may have read that sentence and thought “what does he mean ‘why did the font change’ I don’t remember that”, in which case you read an earlier version of the post.) Anyway, if you were reading Slubes, chances are you would have seen this first:

 

A Note from an Author

Good day, readers. My name is Wally Plotch. I suppose you could call me the writer of this work. Duth Olec prefers to call me the court stenographer, but even simply stenographer would not be wholly accurate. I guess I’m somewhere between a reporter and a writer. Duth is the creator and the presenter. It is our combined efforts that bring this story to you.

And any problems you have with it are Wally’s fault!

Hey! No! You said you wouldn’t interfere on this first outing!

Well we haven’t outed yet, have we? I just want everybody to know that it’s all Wally’s fault.

Stop that. Or I’ll make you do this on your own.

All right, all right. Go ahead; I’ll get things started…

 

In this novel, as in probably all my novels will be, the narrator is Wally Plotch; he’s not thrilled about the job, but at least I’m there to spur him along, or distract him, or whatever it is I do. To distinguish between his writing and my occasional input (It doesn’t happen very often, I only speak up when I’m needed, I do not abuse this power!), different fonts are used (not the ones you see here, this is just for the blog)… except in the e-book version, which uses a uniform font throughout. Instead they’re enclosed within {}.

Also, you may have noticed a footnote in yesterday’s excerpt. There’s footnotes! After all, this is a crazy new world that you’ve never seen, gaddfern it! You need to know what the hex is going on sometimes! Carp!

Now that I’ve told you about the semantics, or whatever, maybe next time I’ll post something that will make people interested! Well, tomorrow’s Mother’s Day, so I might take the day off, and I take every Monday off because I’m a jerk who likes to laugh at people who have jobs (STRESSLESS), so Tuesday might be more! Might be not! I’m not sure how much of the novel I will actually go and post up here, but we’ll see.

Slubes Cover Art and Beginning Excerpt!

Oh gosh! The cover art for Slubes is finished!

Slubes

Drawn by my friend Eli Manning Hedgington Somename Bock! Wee! It’s less ephemeral now!

I’m going to make it even further less un-non-ephemeral by posting the beginning of the novel!
Nonsense ahoy!