Thursday, April 27, 2006


O.G. Donde-Vega wrote that, with the technology available, there was no excuse not to be professional when publishing fiction. The fiction market was incredibly crowded because of this technology and the potentiality given by simply being protagonists on the Internet. Every one who wanted to be a writer became a writer. All three million in UK alone, probably! It became simply a question of getting your stuff read. No necessary advantage in having your stuff published traditionally. It would sink without trace eventually in those crowded seas however good it was. In the main.

Self-publishing - to Donde-Vega - was anathema, always had been. But, of course, that only applied to printed works. For example, he would never have dreamt of including one of his own stories in NEMONYMOUS (a fiction magazine he earlier edited and published).

There seems now to be five ways to publish a novel:
(1) Traditional publisher with all their services of distribution, marketing, review copies sent out etc etc, (either by Print-On-Demand (POD) or traditional printing).
(2) Publisher who simply prints book and facilitates distribution (usually by POD)
(3) Publisher who asks for money from author to publish it (vanity publishing, either by POD or traditional printing).
(4) Author self-publishes in print with whatever he wants to give to it as publicity impetus etc etc.
(5) Author makes raw text of novel available on-line allowing the reader to decide to 'publish' it by simply reading it there or producing as book for personal use only and for author to sign (or not).

In hindsight (and perhaps sub-consciously), Donde-Vega chose (5) for his first tentative novel (WE ALL LIVE ON A YELLOW CARPET) at the age of 58 (after 20 odd years' activity as a story writer and editor/publisher), because that was the way he did it and it probably read like that (with references to current affairs of the day when he wrote it etc.) and it would never have been written without this method of doing it and he was deeply unsure of the novel as comments on his earlier work did not encourage him to think he should ever write a novel that was publishable traditionally, because of commercial considerations etc. although he did seem to have some facility as an acquired taste for a small coterie of readers. All speculation.

He named his method (5) above as Print-on-Reading (POR) as a method of publishing a novel (not self-publishing although it involves the author making raw text available on-line) - with the knowledge that it had become easier to print and bind things to one's own specification. This could have led to many unique editions of one work - and signed by the author if the logistics of getting the author to sign the hard copy are easy enough.

I shall quote from the introduction to 'We All Live On A Yellow Carpet' by O.G. Donde-Vega (aka Rachel Mildeyes): “In 'Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell', it was said that there had been some prejudice against using magic in the wars of those historical times. However, today's magic has become fiction: equally powerful, equally prejudged, equally within the hands of only a few skilled practitioners. And the biggest war is about to be fought using fiction's powers as one of the available weapons.”

Stub Of pencil: Horror literature horrifies, but does it ‘truly’ horrify? A work of fiction, if you touch its words one by one, should literally (as well as literarily) fill you with horror -- an electric shock from one word? A synaptic outburst from another? Just reading the words doesn't seem enough. Incidentally, do the viruses in avian influenza have conscious ‘intent’ to infect the human beings to further their own survival or are they hidebound by the tenets of ‘The Intentional Fallacy’? This and other catalysts are treated in Donde-Vega’s novel.

Chasing The Noumenon

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