Finally received my first paperback copies of ELf Righteous! These are proofs only, and lack any artwork/design, but will make further editing much easier as I prefer reading and annotating paper copies. Interestingly, it is far cheaper to have paperback books printed, bound, and shipped than it is to print a book on my own printer.
I just had a most fascinating dream and don't know where else to record it. So here you are.
I am sure we have all had dreams in which we became aware that we were dreaming. I have, and have often be frustrated that, on realizing I was dreaming, I tried to fly and could not, and became frustrated that I couldn't as I felt I should be able to do anything I want in a dream. Now I have an answer to that problem.
I actually went through a series of dreams. My dream-self became aware, at some point, that I was dreaming. I knew I had had lucid self-aware dreams in the past, but I was also aware that this was by far the most lucid. My dream-self thought my degree of consciousness was equal to my waking self, though I realized this to be false as soon as I woke up. It was, however, quite a high degree of self-awareness and level of consciousness for a dream.
When I realized my degree of awareness, I began to analyze the nature of dreams. Once I woke up, I also compared my waking thoughts to my self-aware dream state. Here is what I learned.
1) Each dream had parameters, and I intuitively knew them. For example, in one dream I could fly. I changed dreams and immediately checked to see if I could still fly, and I couldn't. I understood that flying was outside the parameters of the dream and trying to do so was fruitless. Each dream had its rules, and I could do whatever I wanted within those parameters, but I couldn't go outside them.
As another example, in another dream I was being hunted by someone (I think Storm Troopers)? First off, I knew I was completely safe, whatever happened in the dream. It occurred to me to whisk my pursuers away with a thought, but immediately understood this was outside dream parameters. I could, however, hide from them, even in plain sight. They couldn't see me unless I let them.
If this happens again, I will investigate how parameters to dreams are set. I was not consciously part of that decision in these dreams. I also couldn't direct the flow of the narrative, though I had freedom of will within the narrative.
2) Speaking of narratives: again, they were self-driven, but didn't always exist. In my final dream I ended stuck in my living room with my roommate and eventually decided to wake up because it was clear nothing was going to happen. I did not seem able to create my own narrative and act it out. I said goodbye to my roommate, told him it was time for me to wake up, and I woke up. (I don't have a roommate - more on this in a moment).
I do think it is possible that there might be dreams where the ability to control the dream's narrative fall within the parameters of the dream, but I didn't have any of those last night.
3) My dream-self had an important cognitive shortcoming: I thought some people and the events we discussed in the dream were real, and our discussions would carry over into real life. In one dream I was discussing a job competition I'm in with my cousin. The job and cousin are real. My dream-self thought I was getting helpful advice on this very real job competition, until I woke up and realized the advice was nonsense.
In this vein, I knew some people in my dream from real life, but there were others who were strangers that I thought were from real life. My roommate in the previous comment is an example. I knew this version of my roommate was a dream, but I thought he was also a real person. When I said good-bye, when I was ready to wake up, he asked me not to go. I said, "Don't worry. I'll see you as soon as I wake up."
Then I woke up, and that roommate does not exist.
So not only did the dream make up a person and convince my dream-self they were real, I also thought the people I spoke with in these dreams would also be aware of our conversations in real life (ie. I thought they were shared experiences).
That said, I didn't think EVERYONE was real. I was aware that 'side-characters' weren't real people.
Anyway...turned out to be one of the most interesting dreams I've ever had. (Really, it was a series of several dreams in which my dream-self kept analyzing the different narratives and parameters.) Would be curious to know if anyone has had a similar experience.
I have the first version of the paperback on order! It's still an early copy as I still have a fair bit of editing I want to do, but I prefer editing on paper than on the computer. Ended up a bit over 150,000 words, so a bit longer that the previous two books, as expected. I will start on my 5th draft when the book arrives this week.
I made a mock-up of Kyla for the cover artist and think it came out kind of cute so thought I'd post it here!
Nearing the end of the third draft of Elf Righteous. Still mucking about with a few of the final scenes. Art work has been commissioned. I am anxious to get a print copy for editing as I find paper books much easier to read. Audio Book for Elf Mastery nearing completion as well. I would like to move on to Elf Doubt once I get my tax return, but would like to see some sales from the Elf Mastery audio book to justify the expense. I will, of course, post the link as soon as it's available.
I'm just starting Draft 3. I wanted to do beta reading after Draft 2, but the ends of Acts I and III still need work. I'm hoping that reviewing the story will help organize my thoughts on those sections, which are proving a challenge. Still shooting for an April release date, though may be later in the month rather than earlier. I have already started work on the cover, and have contacted the artist and provided a mock-up of what I'm hoping to do, though we can't finish the cover design completely until the book is complete and formatted for print, as the width of the spine is determined by the final page count. But we can get most of the work done.
Audio book for Elf Mastery should be ready to go in the next couple weeks as well, so I'm excited to see how that turns out! Voices provided by Merphy Napier, who has a channel on Youtube.
There is a chance I may get a job that will require me to move, which may provide some delays here and there, but the competition has been running so long I'm hoping to finish everything before that happens.
I'm nearing the end of the second draft of Elf Righteous, but truth to tell I'm not actually done the book's ending. I wanted to fix up some elements in the middle of the book and had to do that first as they affected the end. I'm nearly at 130,000 words - already longer than Elf Mastery or Elf Doubt, and was expecting to get to 140,000. I think it may go longer than that, though I do usually have an edit where I excise any extra material. Anyway was hoping to get into beta reading right in the New Year, but may be a couple weeks yet. Overall though I've made some changes that I really enjoy so I think it was worth it.
I'm at about the 110,000 word mark in Elf Righteous. It will be a bit longer than Elf Mastery and Elf Doubt, which are each about 120,000 words, but the last part of the book is already fairly planned out and I just need to get it down. I am house sitting and taking care of a dog for a few weeks. This means out of my own home and its distractions most of the day, but I have a little dog that needs some attention throughout the evening. Anyway cute little dog - she is old and missing some teeth so her tongue is constantly lolling out the side of her mouth. Also some leakage issues so there is often some clean-up when I get back to the house in the afternoon.
Anyway my goal is to have Book 3 finished by December, and be ready for beta reading by January.
Just thought I'd pop in and let you know how I'm progressing in Elf Righteous. I'm nearing the 100,000 word mark, but it's looking like this one might end up closer to 140,000 words (the others were about 120,000). I'm also making some pretty big (but I think exciting) changes. Would like to be ready for beta readers by January so I can have the book out in April, but we'll see. I have a bit of spare time at the moment to get more writing done, but may be looking at moving soon. We'll see. Will try to hammer out as much as I can while I can.
Also have hired someone to make Elf Mastery into an audiobook, so that's pretty exciting! Will post the link once it is available.
Well, I think the opening of the video I am working on came out pretty well so wanted to share it here:
Bryant Reil currently resides in Kelowna, BC. Recent accomplishments include completing a Master's degree, and having finished two books, Elf Mastery and Elf Doubt. The third book, Elf Righteous, is underway.