Thursday, 9 April 2015

Guest Post: Summertime by Chuck Gould

Guest Post: Why Do We Write?
by Chuck Gould

I began writing back at a time when it was a noisy process; the clackety-whack of keys striking paper through an inky strip of fabric, the geared “skrooch” of the carriage return, and the joyful ding of the bell to celebrate the beginning of a new line. Electric typewriters were expensive, and initially rare, but nowhere nearly as rare as a typewriter of any description among currently active writers.

We live in an age when the physical process of writing is easier than ever. Our word processing programs control margins, automate the beginning of a fresh line, correct spelling, and provide instant access to a dictionary as well as a thesaurus. Fact checking once required a trip to the library. Writers today can fact check nearly anything, in a matter of moments, without ever leaving the chair. As the writing process becomes easier, more aspiring writers appear.

There are predictions that more than 3-million new novels will be published in print or on line this year. That’s somewhere around 100,000 per day. There simply is not a viable, commercial market for that many new titles – regardless of inherent quality. We are entering an age when some of those novels will be now be written by algorithms. The competition for audience will no longer be each and every other published and self-published writer, but electro-brains slaving away in some obscure corner of a print shop.  

The act of writing has been automated, but not the art. With less than 1-percent of authors raking in more than 99-percent of any serious money, (much like the music business), most of us need to look beyond financial motives to write. For me, at least, that’s a liberating realization.

As I write, I labor over every sentence. There are a lot of writers for whom the process is easier, and a lot of writers who produce more dynamic results. Changing the over-arching question from “How well must I write this to create a best seller?” to “Is this the very best and most literate job I can do, and am I proud of it?” shifts the paradigm.

Writers who approach the craft hoping for notoriety and huge financial rewards will, statistically, become frustrated and unhappy. We can’t all make money, but we can all strive for artistry. Odds of attracting sufficient readership to make the New York Times Bestseller’s list may be almost impossibly remote, but nothing prevents us applying our skills to create the best novels and short stories we can. If we write so that the dozen, hundred, five –hundred, one-thousand, or several thousand people likely to actually read it will enthralled, entertained, or inspired, it’s my opinion we have not labored in vain.

If we provoke thought, inspire curiosity, challenge stereotypes, or stimulate amusement among our readership, we have accomplished an artful thing. We have built a bridge of words between ourselves and our readers, across which we have successfully marched thoughts, concepts, images and emotions that will make at least a tiny difference in the lives of others.

I think that’s why we write. It’s an art, and we aspire to be considered artists.


Book One
Chuck Gould
Genre: metaphysical fantasy
Publisher: Starry Night Publishing
Date of Publication: September 28, 2014
ISBN: 9781502523174
Number of pages: 298
Word Count: 
Cover Artist: Larry Dubia

Book Description:

Wesley Perkins, successful and privileged advertising executive, makes an apparently impromptu purchase in a pawn shop. Almost immediately, he becomes immersed in a new reality. Old values evaporate. The line between good and evil seems inconsistent. Wesley is challenged to accept profound change, all the while juggling choices of enormous consequence.

Summertime, Book One, is the first portion of a story that delves into a surreal realm of metaphysical fantasy. Situational moralities are juxtaposed with omnipresent supernatural forces. Where the boundaries of our mundane lives intersect cosmic intents, events, and conspiracies, we can become overwhelmed by involuntary transformation. We look for surrogate sacrifices, and a home in Summertime.

Available on  Amazon | BN


Book Two
Chuck Gould
Genre: Metaphysical fantasy
Publisher: Starry Night Publishing
Date of Publication: January 26, 2015
ISBN: 9781507681787
Number of pages: 316
Cover Artist: Larry Dubia

Book Description: 

The metaphysical fantasy continues in this sequel to Summertime, Book One. Wesley Perkins spirals ever deeper into a world he struggles to understand, inextricably linked to the tragic past of a long dead blues musician, Judah Jones. His closest allies are Jones’ granddaughters. Wesley must endure a variety of forces attempting to manipulate his fate, after being warned about the dangers presented by his own ego.

Meanwhile, in Iberia Parish Louisiana, pilgrims seek a new home in a spiritual enclave established by a charlatan radio preacher. The entire community falls victim to an ancient heresy. Are these disparate universes part of a common, supernatural conflict?


About the Author: 

Seattle native Chuck Gould is a writer and musician.

Formerly editor of Nor’westing Magazine and editor emeritus of Pacific Nor’West Boating, he has written over 1,000 articles for recreational boating magazines.

Chuck plays a variety of keyboard instruments, and enjoys the “exercise in humility” attempting to master the great highland bagpipe.

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