From the Ashes…

So here we go.  A whole new website.  Sorry for the inconvenience, gang, but these things happen.  But I look at it like this.  From destruction rises creation, the circle of life, yin and yang.  You get the idea.

Anyway, here we are.  And I find myself with the beginning of a new blog to collect my oh-so-noteworthy thoughts.  No pressure or anything, but if this post stinks, it’ll probably be a blow from which I shall never recover.  So let’s try to make this one memorable.

I’m a novelist for a very specific reason.  I love the freedom it gives me compared to other mediums.  When it comes to the art of storytelling, it’s harder to find a more welcoming canvas.

I love monsters, for example.  And it’s really hard to make a movie that features a monster as the hero.  I was struck by this recently by Transformers 2.  For a movie about giant shape-changing robots from outer space, there sure were a hell of a lot of people in this thing.  Too many if you ask me.  But movie folks get nervous if they don’t have a bankable star.  They want recognizable faces.  They want sex appeal and “relatable” characters.  And while it’s easy to criticize film for doing this, it’s also understandable.  When you’re investing millions of dollars into a motion picture, you logically want to hedge your bets.

But in a book, I’m not reliant on actors.  I can do what I want.  And if I’m going to write a story about kobolds or scrawny vampires or robotic detectives, I’m pretty free to do so.  More or less.  Although you might not notice this considering the number of characters in fiction that are deliberately described as good-looking because, yes, even in novelology, sex sells.

There are no special effects budgets for me.  I can blow up the universe or populate my cast with ogres or build cities in space.  But there’s another advantage to novels too.  Special effects aren’t quite so special either.  I can’t really draw oohs and aahs via a cool explosion.  I don’t have to build my story around a particularly FX laden scene.  I can run wild with my imagination, but it won’t save a boring story to have lots of colorful explosions or pretty sets.

Finally, a novel is less of a collaborative effort.  I do have an editor, a copy editor, my workshop, my friends and family.  But this is a paltry number compared to the dozens upon dozens of people who offer their input in a film or television series.  While no book of mine could truly be called my work entirely, it’s a lot closer than usually what makes it onto the movie or television screen.

So it turns out that novels are really my medium of choice.  It wasn’t a deliberate decision.  I kind of just stumbled into it, and if I’d picked something different, I’d probably think that was the cat’s pajamas instead.  But I didn’t, and I’m glad to be here.  There are a lot of ways to earn a living, gang, and I’m just happy to be making mine doing something I enjoy.

And, as always, I couldn’t do it without you.

Fighting the good fight, writing the good write,


(Since most folks who meet me get confused by the A. and Lee in my name, I’m just going by Lee mostly now.  Makes things simpler.)

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  1. Posted July 7, 2009 at 5:44 pm | Permalink

    You’re right.

    I’m tired of movies that rely on FX and always find myself turning to books for my entertainment. So much more can be done. Sure a lot of movies start out with the best intentions but most fall to lack of budget or something similar. Novels, you really don’t have that problem 😀

    I’m currently reading Monstrous: 20 Tales of Giant Creature Terror and that’s a great example of it, big monsters, explosions and carnage in one book ! 😀

  2. A. Lee Martinez
    Posted July 7, 2009 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, I’ve seen ads for Monstrous, and thought it looked fun. Think I’ll check it out.

  3. Posted July 7, 2009 at 6:10 pm | Permalink

    I loved the first story, the second was really short and not much to it. The next two were pretty goo. I’m enjoying it. I was swayed to buying it because Ryan C. Thomas the editor is a cool guy and I’m glad I did buy it – really enjoying it thus far.

    I’ve been very impressed with Permuted Press’ books, good quality printing AND writing for the most part.

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