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December 11, 2004

Author's Note for Blog Serialization

A Whispering Through the Branches
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This is how it goes: The anxiety builds to such a degree that all new stressors simply roll on top of the pile. Eventually, you turn off your mind, put your head down, and keep trudging along, dragging the burden because doing otherwise is not an option. While in this state, glimmers of hopeful events in the future become of such import, at least as milestones toward relief, that their postponement counts not as mere delay, but as discouragement.

I'm finding that there's a threshold, however. Many of those achievements that have moved out of my immediate reach have backed into the new year, which consequently is beginning to tremor with a hopeful hum. I've multiple reasons — pressing need not least among them — to think that 2005 will provide somewhat of a turning point. This could be true in the sense that various aggregations of preparatory labor will finally fall into place and push me toward my aspirations, or in the sense that I must find some new direction in which to head. Either way, the dark tint to my willful optimism is that the foreseeable future offers no apparent outlet for what is perhaps the single most assertive of my passions (of my callings).

That passion is creative writing, an area in which my novel, A Whispering Through the Branches, has continued to have the weight of unfinished business. I originally self-published the 2001 edition as a step toward finding an established publisher; technology is such that purchasing and mailing copies of print-on-demand paperbacks can be cheaper than running off and shipping copies of the book in manuscript form. In my urge to move on, however, I began trying to put the project behind me. But I've been unable to exorcise its shadow from my mind.

The solution that I've hit upon to answer my various needs is to perform a next-edition edit of the book in serialized form. Moving through approximately six pages per week will bring the task to completion at the end of a year. Presenting each section as my Sunday blog will remove the urge to write my habitual fare on that day. And the subject matter will keep me involved, to some degree, with creative writing.

I would never claim that A Whispering Through the Branches has more than a flukish chance of finding a broad audience. My own impression, reinforced with the several years of wildly varying feedback, is that some readers are enthusiastic about what I've done, and others are... well... others are not. That said, I've an author's gut feeling that serialization may prove a particularly suitable means of presenting the story, for reasons of both plot and pacing. Whether that proves true or not, I welcome feedback on this work — complimentary or critical — even more than usual.

With all of my disclamatory rambling now out of the way, I'd like to note that, should you feel compelled to read ahead, or should you come to desire a physical copy of the book for other reasons, the picture accompanying each post will always link to the paperback in Confidence Place, the Timshel Arts store. The 2001 edition will be a round of edits behind, of course, but it will arrive inscribed, and bearing all of the gratitude that I'm able to will onto the pages.

Posted by Justin Katz at December 11, 2004 6:42 PM
A Whispering Through the Branches