- Barry Andrews has created a character and is developing a musical around him called Vile Homunculus.
- The first time I ever heard the word "homunculus" was in a Tom Baker Dr. Who episode called The Talons of Weng Chiang.
- Dr. Who was referring to Mr. Sin when he uttered the word.
- Mr. Sin was played by a very young actor by the name of Deep Roy.
- Deep Roy later on played every Oompa Loompa in Tim Burton's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
- As the Oompa Loompas, Deep Roy performed all the songs in the movie.
- But he was actually lipsynching Danny Elfman, who wrote the score and the songs for Charlie.
So, once again, B and Danny Elfman are connected in my head. Now, wasn't that fun?
I had heard Danny Elfman sing before, but never like he did as Jack Skellington. His natural vibrato shining through on some of the loveliest songs ever composed finally pulled me over to The Elfmeister's way of thinking, so much so that a new Vampire was born in my head, belonging totally to Elfman in appearance and in talent. I named him Cygnet, because of my affiliating Jack Skellington with swans, and went to mapping down his origins and alignments. He was originally a party animal kind of Vampire, who also just happened to be one of the greatest singers and performance artists to have ever been born. He was of Austrian origins, being an opera singer in Vienna when he was turned. In modern times, he ran a cabaret in San Francisco and was a "family man," who just happened to have a big crazy party every single night of the week, welcoming both Vampires and humans.
Not long after A Nightmare of Christmas, Oingo Boingo released what was apparently their final studio album. This album boasted the song "Pedestrian Wolves," which would forever alter not only Cygnet, but also the entire Vampire Great Hive. "Pedestrian Wolves" created The Hive of the Beast, a sect within the Great Hive that was responsible for the legends of werewolves. These Vampires were masters at anubis, or shapeshifting, most usually shifting into wolves. They were the origins of the vicious Eastern European vrakshatha, who engaged in the rending and consumption of the flesh of their victims, as well as bathing in the blood they did not drink. Suddenly Cygnet was not as innocent as he had once been. The name of the Vampire was also suddenly quite precious.
So I set to rename the newly-crowned Prince of Beasts, but I wanted to keep him aligned with my beloved "Skellington Swan." It was then that the idea dawned on me that I could rename the character after the greatest musician of all time, Orpheus, whose constellation was Cygnus the Swan. It was perfect, since Cygnet was already a legendary singer. So I altered the spelling of the name a tad and Cygnet became Orphaeus Cygnus.
I so enjoyed writing this character, I found myself ignoring all the others, even Cadmus Pariah. I enjoyed the rest of 1994 and most of 1995 writing about my favourite party animal, and how he and his little family held fetes at their cabaret, and dined on one or two of their guests each night. It was during this time that Orphaeus adopted the serial killer's proclivity for taking souvenirs from his victims. To this day, the Swan still treasures his little leather bag of finger bones he has collected from his victims over the centuries. The two defining songs for Orphaeus became "Pedestrian Wolves" (of course) and the Oingo Boingo party anthem "No One Lives Forever." These allowed Orphaeus to be a monster, yet maintain a mischievous lovability despite his bestial nature.
But somewhere along the line, my demon child Cadmus began clamouring for my attention again, and I found the characters at odds with one another in my mind. Part of me wanted to stay in San Fran and party with the monsters, but the other bigger part of me was compelled to acquiesce to the dark demands of that singular monster who had upstaged all the other Vampires in my immortal pantheon. And so it was that the Pariah and the Swan became enemies. When the characters began battling for my attention, even though I wanted Orphaeus to win out, it was Cadmus who rose victorious. The battle for attention culminated in the scalping of Orphaeus, a vile act that became one of those sublime moments of Vampire legend in my head. It was only years later that the story of that scalping was ever properly told. The legend proper made it into the first book of The Vampire Relics.
Seven years after the birth of Cygnet, while I was still seeking out fellow Shriekback fans on the Internet, I was pointed in the direction of a website run by someone purportedly of interest to Shriekback fans. On the site was a link to another website called 'The Head of Orpheus,' which turned out to be a/the Russell Hoban fan site. Russell Hoban's works, particularly Riddley Walker, have been referred to by Barry Andrews as "Shriekback-required reading." The website I'd been directed to turned out to be a veil behind which Barry Andrews was hiding. He had been the one to link visitors to his site to The Head of Orpheus.
The irony of all that wasn't lost on me, given my characters' histories with their inspirations and one another. Of course, it was all just a little too strange for me too. Either way, it's what got me intrigued with Russell Hoban's works, not because the members of Shriekback suggested his writing, but because of the excerpts from the author's books found on The Head of Orpheus, especially from Pilgermann and The Medusa Frequency (which I quoted in the 'Eurydice' video, a quote using the voice of Eurydice, talking to her beloved Orpheus. It was that writing style I unabashedly tried to emulate when I began writing 'Sui Generis' about a year and a half later.
What's so funny is, Orphaeus Cygnus has never and will never anubis into a swan. That would just be too tame and serious for the likes of him. Cadmus would be more likely to shift into a swan, since he prefers birds (particularly the nighthawk) as his primary species into which to transform when he needs to employ anubis.
Ah, but Orphaeus possesses the ethereal beauty of the swan in his soul. When I look at his Cygnus alignment, I never fail to see Jack Skellington walking slowly up the curly hill, his thin, graceful form illuminated by the giant moon behind him. He will forever be my Gothic Swan, my Cygnet.
And here's what triggered my tip-toe down Memory Lane.
If all goes as planned August will be the month of the release of the second installment of The Vampire Relics, entitled The Blood Crown. With breathtaking cover art drawn by Art Center’s Amanda Cook and with plans for a for a future kindle, we here at Fey Publishing is very excited about the story and wonderment to come. Unlike The Chalice, The Blood Crown will focus primarily on the two vampires Cadmus Pariah and his arch-nemesis Orphaeus Cygnus as they travel by foot from Jerusalem to Rome to retrieve the second mysterious relic that is sacred to the Vampire Great Hive. Throughout the story, we will learn more of the ancient alien Elfin Tarmi, and their role in human development throughout the long ages.
We will also learn how Cadmus came to learn of the Blood Crown and the horror he enacted on another to acquire this knowledge. Not for the light of heart, The Blood Crown is a necessary and important story that connects both the first and the last of the The Vampire Relics trilogy. We hope you enjoy it.
This is a sketch I wrote in the late 90's or perhaps 2000, when I was still playing with the idea of Orphaeus being able to challenge Cadmus with help. Of course, that plan never survived.
I am relatively young in Vampire years, having roamed the dark Earth for only 93 years after my conversion. I remember clearly the Threefold Wound given me that pulled me into the Great Hive for what I hope shall be Eternity.
But this isn’t an account of my Threefold Wound.
I speak of a wound that never fully healed, that perpetually haunts me, and shall do so unto my death or the End of All Things. I speak of a wound I received just a few years ago in the deep and velvet night, when passion, love, and terror enveloped me. It is a wound I should not have survived, which marks me as surely as my Threefold, and makes me eternally long for the one who inflicted it.
Cadmus Pariah….his name echoes in my mind, and I wonder when he’ll find me once again to finish what he started.
It was a frigid Winter’s eve and I was in London. The dampness broke through my woolen clothing as I made my way down a dim avenue going nowhere, really. I was exploring the city. Somewhere, I’d heard my practice called Psycho Drifting. Just soaking up the city and its inner life made manifest.
A voice from the dark said to me, “Fancy finding you here.”
I stopped and turned in the direction of the voice, all filigree and dry leaves. Emerging from an enclave was a brother in Blood. He was in black jeans and a turtleneck sweater, his shoes black suede. Awash in darkness was this brother, and I was enamoured of him immediately. I studied his shaven head and immense black eyes, and I wondered at the blue hue of his lips. He reminded me of someone, yet no one I truly knew. Déjà vu and horror flowed through me like ice water, yet I was loathe to flee because I wanted to remain sheltered in this strange one’s gaze forever.
“Do I know you, brother?” I asked him with mock confidence.
“No,” he replied. “But I think you may before this night is over. Call me Cadmus, dear Branwen.”
And he drew near to me. I could smell ginger and papyrus, and I was paralysed, my heart in my throat with wondering how he knew my name. The scent of him surrounded me and I felt myself being surrounded and chilled by his warmth. All the skills I had learned and developed since my conversion were gone and I was a child….no…I was a small animal in his grasp.
I felt his lips at my throat and the sudden sting of his penetration of my skin. This could not be happening! But it was, and I relished in the pain and pleasure of it. I felt myself pouring into him and my lifeforce began to ebb. Music rang in my mind, a gentle and ominous melody, intertwined with his voice, whispering to me….urging me to surrender my life to him.
Suddenly the connection was broken and I fell to the concrete. When I looked up, I saw a red-haired brother and dark-haired sister locked in struggle with Cadmus. My vision faded and I awoke days later, nestled in warm blankets in a hotel room. I found a letter on the night stand. It read:
Branwen, you were almost devoured by the Abomination Cadmus Pariah. You’ve heard his song and felt his bite, so you’ll always be bound to him. Use caution. He may not try to find you, but he won’t hesitate to seek you out if he senses you near. Leave London and don’t ever come back here. We may not be present the next time he embraces you.
~Orphaeus Cygnus and Family
Looking in the mirror, I found the mark on my throat which should have healed and disappeared. It never has. The wound is a constant reminder of my craving for and trepidation of Cadmus Pariah, and I have found that it bleeds when he’s near to me, if only by a few hundred miles.
I bleed for Cadmus and, someday, I fear I shall bleed to death.
More than likely, I will finish this book today. I've been writing like a fiend for days now. When <lj user="gunslingaaahhh"> gets home, she'll have a manuscript of well over 120,000 words to edit. God help her. I'm not currently satisfied with the ending, but that's the great thing about writing ~ you can always change the ending. So far, the past 10k words or so have been written by the characters themselves. I love it when that happens. It's like being possessed, for lack of a better description. I wonder if people who are possessed by possible demons are those who don't have the ability to write out what is being channeled through them. Does that make me demon-possessed. In a way, I guess I am. Cadmus is most definitely demonic in nature. His parents are so proud ::she writes sarcastically::
So anyway...I want to do a rewrite on what transpires after Cadmus dons the Blood Crown. I'm just not satisfied with the instructions given to Orphaeus. I may trash them altogether and have Orphaeus run a gauntlet to get out of the catacombs; however, that may make the book too long and I don't want that. We'll see where it takes us. I'm drinking Monster energy coffees, so God only knows what will happen on this fine day.
“More than ready,” Orphaeus replied with a conviction that surprised even himself.for what we are and take measure to end our lives. And there’s nothing worse than an angry mob out for blood.”
“You’ve surmised the situation surprisingly well,” Cadmus muttered. “And what conclusion have you drawn?”( Read more... )
DAEN LUMA’DHRYS’LOMA JONNSA ů DAEN LUMA ME’ADHI JONSSA
The light will in, the truth will out, This is no time for fear and doubt. A health/y future, a perfect past, We’re catching up, we’re gaining fast. ~ Shriekback “Cleartrails”
Both Vampires were ravenously hungry by the time they reached the outskirts of Albania. Cadmus bade Orphaeus stay in hiding while he hunted.
“I’ll bring the chalice with your meal in short order. We must be careful, we must be discreet. These people know more about our kind than anyone else. They held on to the Old Ways despite their embrace of the modern world. Some wisdoms run deep and the wisdom of how to spot and destroy a Vampire runs thick in their blood.
Orphaeus didn’t argue with Cadmus. He could tell by Cadmus’ earnest instruction that the Pariah knew what he was talking about. The last thing he wanted was a stake through the heart or to be beheaded, or set on fire. No, he was happy to wait for Cadmus to return with the chalice.
It wasn’t long before Cadmus did return with a chalice brimming over with Blood.
“Drink…” was his one-word command.
Orphaeus didn’t question Cadmus about the hunt or why he seemed a little frazzled. He simply took the chalice and he drank. It was almost immediately that a deep memory bubbled up from his well of wisdom. Orphaeus fell into a swoon and Cadmus just caught the chalice before it fell with the ginger Vampire, spilling all the blood to the ground.( the tale spins onward. )
As it stands now, I have Cadmus and Orphaeus in Kosovo where Orphaeus summoned the tale of how humanity came to be on Earth. This was always meant to be the last memory Orphaeus tapped before the two enter the catacombs beneath the Vatican. Having the two Vampires travel, no matter how swiftly they traveled, has been exceedingly difficult because I always wanted to keep it fresh. There's only so much you can do with two characters, one of which is still quite static in his emotional development. I felt like the narrative was on the threshold of being repetitive or stale.
Since it came out that Orphaeus can turn into a raven, I've decided to have the Vampires travel over the Adriatic sea at top Vampiric speed. This will get them to Rome quicker and set up the last part of the book where Cadmus and Orphaeus enter the catacombs to face the dread wards set up by the Apostate. I'm hoping to get all that written today. If I keep going the way I'm going, the book will be finished by next week. And it's about bloody time, too.
When all is dreaming out amongst the night, my dearest darlings
You and I, we're wont to fly, like wraiths and dreams,
When moon is bright with howl of wolf
And Piper's Gate at Dawn is locked
'Gainst all but the mad and lost
You and I, we're wont to dream, like flights of fancy
dark in the delights of our reverie
As ripples drawn against the reflection
Cast upon a secret sacred pool
We'll see the promise of all the delights
What the Earth has to offer
And those ripples go ever outward
Growing larger and taking in the whole of Creation
The ever-hungering Hermit who winds the clock
With utmost concern to be had.
The Joker Blogs will be coming to a conclusion soon. Only a few more episodes to go before the finale and the Big Reveal, when Little Bro finally takes off the war paint for people to see who he is. I'll be sad to see the Blogs end because I have enjoyed them immensely, but I am looking forward to the Big Reveal and all the good things to follow for Dude. I'm unsure I'll be a part of that and, if I'm not, that's okay. I've done what I can do and that's all anyone can ever do, so I have no regrets there. I just hope I've been able to help and that the gathering of what is essentially his first fan club will assist him in bringing more unique and brilliant entertainment to people.
If I don't end up with another rare tropical disease, I think I'm going to win NaNoWriMo. I won't have The Blood Crown finished, but I'll have it about three-quarters of the way, so it won't take long to bring it to a satisfactory conclusion. I already have that in my mind. The only thing I don't know about is what Cadmus and Orphaeus face when they finally enter the catacombs under the Vatican. I guess they'll tell me when they get there. Cadmus has certainly been wordy of late, so I'm sure he'll disclose what he needs to when he feels like it. Ha ha!
“Are you sure this is the location?” Orphaeus crossed his arms and tapped his left foot impatiently.
Cadmus looked up at his arch-nemesis slowly. Why again was he saddled with this waste of immortality? All he needed to do was exhume the body of the Sainted Confessor and see what it was about the incorruptible body that would lead him in the direction of the Augury of Gideon. The prophecies hadn’t been clear to him at the time Faust had told him, but it was pretty obvious now. Compelled ye shall be to bring him forth from the belly of the Spirit of Creation….he waits! Pools of indigo will carry you Home. Redemption in the song that goes before us. That one and he’d collected another over time: In the dust shall you find the ruby, the untouchable jewel sublime. Fierce with arcane knowledge, the Dove will cleave wisdom to that of the Dragon and the Swan. Prophecy shall come alive in the human heart.
( I'm the ruby in the dust, I'm the trust in the mistrust )
The clear, clipped accent of Cadmus awoke Faust, who opened his mosaic eyes and breathed the air as a mortal for the first time in decades. He had forgotten how truly wonderful it was to walk the Earth in uncertainty and hope, wondering if your life would be snuffed out at any moment, yet carrying on with a force of Will surely driven by that Divine Spark that dwelt within everyone, if you could only find it.
“Me?” the man said, his voice drenched with mockery. “Me?”
“You…you are different.” Cadmus bent down and inhaled Faust’s breath, then backed away in a kind of disgust. “How can this be? You are…human.”
“Mortation?” the young moppet offered, smiling merrily.
“Mortation is a myth. It cannot be achieved…You are what you are.”
“Yet here I am, you bat-clad Abomination. Here I am.”
Cadmus frowned, his vast black eyes studying the healed and naked form on the ruined bed before him. Faust was mortal again. The Blood, if given to him in any quantity would kill him and a sip would only serve to addict him to the chalice. Cadmus could not vivisect the youngling without killing him. The boy was of no use to him. He looked down at the chalice of Blood, taken from another child running wild and free in the streets of Brooklyn. He’d brought it to fortify the Vampire before ripping into him again and bathing in the agony and Blood.
How had he done it? How had he achieved the impossible? Mortation…no Vampire had ever achieved mortation. It was a myth brought about by rumours and scattered prophecies said to be found in the Augury of Gideon. It was all rubbish to Cadmus, who believed nothing but the reality before him.
But that reality right now was a Vampire turned mortal.
“How did you do it, Faust?”
“Don’t call me Faust, Cadmus. I am Kallum again. After all these years, I am Kallum.”
“How did you do it?”
“I…had…faith.” Kallum said slowly, deliberately, and with not a small about of contempt for Cadmus.
( incorruptible )
A note about Faust's mortal name: being of pale blue Scottish blood myself, I have a certain fondness for All Things Scottish. Early on in the story, it was pretty much determined in my mind that Faust would be of mortal Scottish descent, thanks to his secondary anchor James McAvoy. At first the name was just Kal, but I changed it Kallum, because the name is the Scottish variant of the name Calum:
Variant spelling of Calum, the Scottish Gaelic form of the Late Latin personal name Columba ‘dove’. This was popular among early Christians because the dove was a symbol of gentleness, purity, peace, and the Holy Spirit. St Columba was one of the most influential of all the early Celtic saints. He was born in Donegal in 521 into a noble family, and was trained for the priesthood from early in life. He founded monastery schools at Durrow, Derry, and Kells, and then, in 563, sailed with twelve companions to Scotland, to convert the people there to Christianity. He established a monastery on the island of Iona, and from there converted the Pictish and Irish inhabitants of Scotland. He died in 597 and was buried at Downpatrick. The name has recently enjoyed considerable popularity throughout the English-speaking world.
His last name, McCreary, is a nod to the extremely talented composer, Bear McCreary, who is prone to wearing a Triquetra pendant he picked up at the Highland games in Washington State.
So that's just to say that, over the course of this composition, Faust became an amalgamation of souls and heritage, not to mention a vessel into which I poured a good bit of my own soul. I guess what I'm saying is that he's become like Cadmus Pariah, indefinable in a way and, therefore, a sentient being unto himself.
And, no, we haven't seen the last of Kallum McCreary.
( read here )
( Cadmus tells Orphaeus a story )
BASIC OUTLINE OF THE PLOT OF THE
SECOND INSTALLMENT OF THE VAMPIRE RELICS.
Basic plot: Cadmus Pariah and Orphaeus Cygnus grudgingly team up to take a Vampire Relic called the Blood Crown away from the Apostate, who is hidden in the catacombs beneath the Vatican. But they need the secrets of ancient Tarmian history and natural magick on their side in order to ever hope for success.
· Sets the tone of the story
The Veiled Sanctuary
· Cadmus comes to visit his mother Kelat in her hidden home in Jerusalem. He tells her of a Vampire Relic called the Blood Crown and how he intends to reclaim it from the Apostate.
Mother of Memory
· Kelat joins minds with Cadmus to show him the Ancient Alien Elfin Days of Tarmian Earth and how the first warnings of a human student of the Tarmian Magickal Arts had gone rogue and was threatening everything the Tarmi had worked for with their human charges. The story of Pretani Kelat’Menan, Kelat’s mother is told.
The Dragon and the Swan
· Kelat reveals that Cadmus is to travel to Rome with his most despised Nemesis Orphaeus Cygnus. A battle of Wills ensues until Orphaeus arrives at the Veiled Sanctuary, where plans begin to unfold.
The Tale of Mary Magdalene
· Needing to get their personal affairs in order, Cadmus and Orphaeus first travel to the West Country of England to deal with Cadmus devotee and former band mate in Magnificat, Mary Magdalene. We learn about her history, how she came to be devoted to and fall in love with Cadmus, and what Cadmus does to rectify the situation.
(chapter driven by ‘Blood of Eden’ by Peter Gabriel)
( more )
I've begun a new quote renovation, taking old quotes and giving modern interpretations, usually Sithly in nature, 'cos that's how I roll yo.
I'm also going to be writing a thing for the mods on TJB on how to deal with 'problem children' on the forums and on their networking sites. We're all being friended and followed from You Tube to Twitter and, sometimes, it gets little hairy with some of the more obnoxious Nerfs. Since I've had experience with folks like this in the past, especially whilst working in The Pit, I'm gonna impart what knowledge I have regarding this to the mods, one of which is relatively new to the net and are a little freaked out by what she's recently had to deal with. I expect things are only gonna get worse in the respect with the release of the next couple of episodes of The Joker Blogs. Tasks will be involved, so things are sure to get crazy.
The next part of The Blood Crown is for Kelat to pass on to Orphaeus the body of knowledge she carries within her infinite memory. He'll be come the keeper of all the Tarmian history and wisdom in relation to the Tribes of Thessaly, making him the first male to hold such sacred knowledge, and the first human. I think his title won't be Father of Memory, but Bard of Memory. In Tarmian, the word would be Kelat'lihar'vha, which essentially means the Singer of Memory. The memories will come unbidden to him as they are needed on the journey to and quest within Rome. Cadmus will be furious that he must depend on Orphaeus for knowledge they need for the success of their venture, but it won't matter because this ability Orphaeus possesses will be the one thing that will keep him alive in the presence of such a volatile and vicious Vampire.
I'm thinking of seeking collaboration in turning The Chalice into a screenplay. The book was always a movie in my head first. I'd had the thing cast, the person I wanted to score the film, and possible directors. I never stuck with one director, because none of them seemed just right for maintaining the vision I wanted. Maybe Peter Jackson, but I'm not sure he'd want to move away from the central goodness he tries to instill in his films, even though he comes from a gory, ridiculous background. Neither one really fits The Chalice anyway. Sure there's fantasy and blood, but neither really fits into the Jackson world. I need a director who has a hint of sociopathy, who can tap into the soul of the Cadmus character and allow the actor to bring him out in all his horrible glory. Personally, I'd like Ed Kowalczyk to play Cadmus Pariah. After seeing the 'Freaks' video, I really think he could pull it off, and he's had acting experience before, having appeared in The Fight Club.
I added that extra video to show his stage presence. He has that hypnotic charismatic power over his audience that I've described in Cadmus more than once. I think he'd be a dead ringer for the Cadmus character. Of course Barry would be my first pick, but I don't think he'd be willing to do that and, honestly, he's too old for the young Vampire now. Not that he doesn't still look uncannily young for his age, don't get me wrong. I just wonder if Ed could do a British accent and if he'd be willing to work with Barry Andrews in the creation of the character for screen. And, of course, Barry would have to do the songs for Magnificat. I'd like for Danny Elfman to score the film.
Gods listen to me. I talk like it's already a given, and I still don't have anyone who could help me make it into a screenplay. Pathetic much? I'm way too much of a dreamer.
Speaking of music, booraven22 sent me a bunch, including "I Like It" by Moby. I was listening to it while on chat with one of the TJB mods, luvthyjoker, who also happens to be a fantastic video editor who shows her fine work at her You Tube channel. I sent the song to her with the message "Nerfs the world over would worship at your toes if you made a tribute video to this song." Well, she did. And I've been laughing uncontrollably ever since. I'm not posting the link here because that'd just be wrong of me, and I feel dirty enough as it is. Anyway, that's a lot of what I did yesterday, just cackling at the absurdity of what we'd done. I blame booraven22 for sending me the song. I have to blame someone.
These new meds are kicking my butt. I fell asleep during Knowing last night, so I need to watch the rest of that. For now, though, I think I'm gonna have another lie down.
I was, that is, until right around 3 am, while I was online with rancid_rainbow discussing the need for a Town Hall Meeting, now that Little Bro has such a large and scattered team helping him out. Well, we were talking about that and music. And that's the last thing I remember until around 5 this morning when Aunt Tudi asked me to get up and give her her insulin shot. I woke up starved to death so I got a wee bowl of grits and couldn't even finish those. Aunt Tudi woke me a few minutes later, telling me to get my hair out of my food. I went and cleaned up, got rid of the grits, and wibbled my way back to the love seat to finish one more thing online before I turned in.
I woke up on the love seat at 2 PM.
So I've had over 9 hours of deep, uninterrupted, dreamless sleep, just at the wrong time of day. I expect I'll be up all night tonight. I'm not taking the meds tonight. I'll just stay awake until around 6 PM tomorrow evening. Then I'll take the meds and maybe I'll fall out at the correct time. What I really think my problem is, is that I'm by nature a night person. All of my creative efforts and thoughts kick my spirit up a notch when the sun goes down. Maybe forcing myself to sleep at night isn't the best idea in the world. I'm gonna try it for a while, but I may instead reverse myself completely and take my meds for a daytime sleep schedule, interrupting it only long enough to perform diurnal duties before crawling back into my coffin.
In other news, I am officially retired from writing The Date Series. I know I've said that before, but this time is different. Yesterday, I deleted my j-Tunes from my i-Tunes playlists and from Son of iGor. If nothing else bespeaks finality, that does to anyone who truly knows me. The tale is in the music. If the music is dispersed, the tale is over. I have achieved Zen Oneness with my Joker. All the Js that were crowding my head merged into one happy, reconciled, shiny new Head Joker who can now reside in the brain pan and give advice on chaos, anarchy, and dealing with difficult people as needed.
There was one other J-fic I was considering writing, and I actually started it. Its working title was "One Pretty Bad Day," and it was to follow a day in the life of J, who has apparently fallen victim to Murphy's Law. Yes, it was a comedy. No, there was no violence or sex involved. I may still do it, I don't know. Right now, the only J-related thing I have the time or sanity to focus on is The Joker Blogs and making sure Little Bro gets to do his thing in the way he wants to do it, with no or close to no distraction or bother. Where my mind is right now, any J-related writing will be in that vein, for the maintenance and furtherance of Little Bro's growing empire. My new Head J, who sits next to Maul on the Council of We'll Kick Your Ass and Laugh while We Do It, will be very useful to my psyche as I keep on keeping on in this capacity. The characters that inhabit my head are my archetypes, whom I tap when the need arises. There's never a dull moment when a Sith Lord and a sociopathic Clown with self-image issues are on the job. There's some other stuff I want to write regarding TJB, but that'll have to wait until later when my thoughts are gathered.
I'd also like to get back into HG World Zombie Drama podcast, but I'll be needing a new mic before I can do that. Mine is knackered. I may as well string a tin can to one of my USB ports. I thought I'd be able to get one this month, but it's not gonna happen 'til September now. I'm hoping I can still be a part of it in some way by then. I had a hella good time doing what I did with 'In the Flesh.'
There's that, and I've gotten the bug to start drawing again, thanks to my interp of one of paisleydaze's characters. After I finish that, I may try my hand at a new Cadmus picture. It's been years since I drew him, so I'm sure he's changed in subtle ways that will only come out on paper. Heck, for that matter, I may as well draw him and Orphaeus together, since The Blood Crown is as much about the dynamics of their relationship as it is about anything else. Now that I have new artist friends who can give me good advice and beat me about the head with easels if need be, I feel much better about drawing and being able to improve myself.
And, for the first time in quite a long time, I have The Blood Crown open and looking at me from the computer monitor. I feel rejuvenated from my fan fiction vacation, even though that holiday took a right turn at Albuquerque when it should have taken a left. All in all, it was a scream, as opposed to The Vampire Relics being a Shriek. Totally different vibe. And now I'm getting back into the dreadful poetry of Cadmus Pariah and company. Once more into the Abyss...
Better unhinged than unselective
Better messed-up than compromised
Better ignored than not emphasized
I'm off to go find Smidgen and Shmoop and put them out for the night, then I'm going to bed. John Doe in all his Se7enish glory is my bedmate this good eve.
Speaking of poetics, I need to sit down and listen to 'Dreamlife of Dogs' and 'Nowhere Nothing Ever' while perusing the lyrics until I can sufficiently put into words what I think of the songs. Barry is feeling a little creatively blue and, if I can cheer him on with one of my reviews then, by the Mighties, that's what I will do!
There are storms once again predicted for this afternoon, so I'll be doing all of this whilst dodging lightning. If we get another major thunder-bumper like the one that came through late yesterday, I may have to take a movie and post it. All hell broke loose in Duncan and it was so much fun.
**Note to song_tothesiren: I promise to read more of your fiction very soon. I cycle it dribs and drabs of either writing or reading, and I'm in a writing jag at the mo. Please don't think I'm ignoring you!
( I realise that the Dragon and the Swan never encounter the other without the Swan getting singed )
If I have the capacity to think, I'd like to work more on The Blood Crown. The first two chapters after the prologue are entitled 'The Veiled Shrine' and 'The Mother of Memory.' The next chapter will be called 'Reluctant Reunion,' and will re-introduced Orphaeus Cygnus. I may give him dreads this time. He's rather fond of his crimson locks, so why not let him enjoy them to their full potential, á la Mick Hucknall? It's all gonna be delicate writing, though. I need to maintain the poetic lilt of the story in keeping with The Chalice, but I also need to ensure Cadmus doesn't end up being straight man to Orphaeus' merry humour.
So, I've got a great exchange between Kelat and her Blood grandson planned. I'm excited about this. It's gonna be fun, so more than 500 words will get written today. Probably a lot more. If any of it is any good, I'll post it. See, this is when I dig insomnia.
The Chalice was told in a series of vignettes that led up to the conflict in Asheville. I want The Blood Crown to follow along that same path and I want the same for The Augury of Gideon. I think that, with a structure like this, one can learn more about the characters and what drives them. I've already decided that one chapter will be dedicated to the torture and murder of Faust by Cadmus Pariah, during the Summer of Sam in NYC. Another chapter will tell the story of how Orphaeus was converted into Vampirism, and it will introduce Rebekah and Mephistopheles. This novel will draw heavily from the Vampires' Tarmian roots, so we'll see more of their ancient and magickal ways, and how their choices in teaching Humanity in the ways of natural magick led to the madness unleashed upon both races by one who would identify himself only as the Apostate. I want to write a chapter from his view point as well, from a time before he became a dry husk lurking in the Vatican catacombs.
But, for right now, I have the novel set aside. Maybe I'm trying to purge my comedy bone by writing Joker fanfiction and this will enable me to have a better frame of mind in order to write Cadmus and Orphaeus in the way I want. Cadmus' voice has been very distant in the past few months, but he's always there and his influence is coming back in baby steps. Eventually, I'll be back in his dreadful embrace, and I'll have no choice but to write what he tells me, no matter how horrid.
"So your plan is to infiltrate the Apostate's stronghold and take the Blood Crown, even if it rests upon his brow?" Kelat asked Cadmus, her heart increasing its rhythm, pumping the stolen blood through her hungry veins. It was her hope that Cadmus was indeed keen on taking up this quest.
Cadmus thought before answering. The Blood Crown was one of those relics that held the fate of the Great Hive in a kind of magickal thrall, the chalice possibly being strongest of the three. That was securely in his hands. He didn't use it to sway the Will of the Great Hive; rather, he depended on the chalice as a supply of Blood to keep him sated. Cadmus could live his life without worry, for no Vampire except Kelat would dare attempt to take the chalice from him, and Kelat was not strong enough to attempt such folly alone. For any other Vampire to try to take the chalice would mean their demise, a painful and degrading one at that, depending upon the Darkling’s age and strength. The stronger the Vampire, the longer Cadmus liked to keep him or her alive, drinking from the hostage at whim and exacting cruel punishments upon the flesh as not only an eternal recreation of his own degradation, but now also as an amusement. But the Blood Crown was the very one that helped to drain the life of the Christ so that his blood could be used in a vengeful act of perversion. To have that and to possibly kill the living husk that hid away in his poison catacombs...that would be a glorious thing. It would achieve two of Cadmus' goals: to retrieve another Vampire relic for his own and to murder the Apostate. It would also gain him not a small amount of control on the remaining nine of the Original Ten. The only relic left to acquire was the Augury of Gideon, that elusive book of Vampiric prophecy. But it was believed that the only copy of that book had been destroyed with Gideon when he invoked Inferno, and that the vestiges of his prophecy existed only in the memories of the Vampire scatterlings, passing on their knowledge and predictions by rote, from one Vampire to another.
( click for Cadmusian goodness )
My current word count for The Vampire Relics (working title, not written in stone just yet) is 107,770. "The Blood Crown" contributes 6,671 of those words and I'm not even into the meat of the story yet. There's gonna be so much interaction between Cadmus Pariah and Orphaeus Cygnus, it might be a crime. One of the things I want to have them do during their time together on this quest of theirs is share a stage and maybe even vie for the audience's attentions and adoration. Just imagining those two making music together in some sort of magickal, vampiric competition is about more than I can bear. It wouldn't surprise me if my head exploded while I try to write this segment of the book. One thing I'd like to do is ask B a few questions about performing, how he feels interacting with the audience and what he'd like to perform with Danny Elfman, if given half the chance. He likes Danny Elfman, which was an immense relief to me. If it'd turned out that he despised the Little Maestro, the psychic implications would have made me keel over for good, I'm afraid.
Once I paste all the wee snippets I've hammered out together, I'll have a nice tidy chunk of The Blood Crown composed. If I can just get my shit together and scale that hurdle, the rest should come easy for me. Like having a baby, I guess. If you can squeeze out the crown, the remainder of the baby should slide out like a greased pig.
The teeny-tiny bit I eked out today goes a little something like this:
Cadmus eyed Orphaeus as he strode into Kelat's sanctuary hidden far beneath the dusty Jerusalem alleyways. What he felt for this Darkling was far beyond hatred. Hatred was something reserved for equals or those who at least came close to being Cadmus' equal for, really, there were no equals to Cadmus, or so he believed. Hatred was a philosophical apex he might could express for Kelat or the Apostate, but not Orphaeus. For Orphaeus the dull throb of disdain quivered just beneath the surface of Cadmus' living skin. And Orphaeus could sense this, Cadmus could tell. The Crimson Swan measured his gait in order to remain just out of the Pariah's reach, his hackles bristling in reaction to the dread memory of the scalping that marked the beginning of his feud with Cadmus Pariah.
( Orphaeus, Cadmus, and Vampires, oh my! )