Thursday, August 22, 2019

Words


“My opinion will not be lenient. My opinion, it’s real convenient, our words are loud, but now I’m talking action. We don’t get enough love? Well, they get a fraction.”—Tyler Joseph, Neon Gravestones by Twenty One Pilots

I think words have been too important to me.
I was never able to exchange them with others, to find that connection of words. I always struggled with words—struggled to find the words and then struggled to say them. Words became mythical in proportion. Words were all I could think of. They were the way to bond with other humans. How do you open the door to another’s heart? The door to your own? Words.
As a writer, words are power. Words allow you to say what you mean, and to invent new worlds when yours is cold—wordless. Their importance was so inflated, I thought if I could say the words, that was enough. More than enough, that was all. The be-all, the end-all.
If I could just crack open my vault and spill my words to others, then they would become my friends. When I failed to break open my lips and shed my words, I thought if I wrote them down, that would be enough. Maybe it would be all. Even in a world of speech—of flowing words—people seldom say the important things.
But I could. If I wrote them down. Masked them in fiction or bared them in a letter. In a text, perhaps.
But sometimes words need to not be said.
Sometimes they are not all. Sometimes it is not enough to force them out, to write them down. Sometimes it is more important to keep them inside. And sometimes, you need more than words. Sometimes you need something else entirely.
Something that can actually be more powerful than words.
I think I am a writer. I think that all the power of human meaning is mine, because I can command the words.
That is not true.
Writers always tell each other: show, don’t tell.
There is a thing called action.
A verb.
Do.
Show.
Sometimes, we must do. We must show, not tell.
That is not to say the telling is not important—that the words are not important. But there is more to life than words.
Sometimes words fail, and that’s ok, because there is a recourse, if you remember that words are not all. And sometimes, words are useless, because there is no meaning behind them. They get used and used again until they lose their savor, their zest, and their menaing.
Words need meaning. They need to be verbs. Not passive verbs, but active.
Words are important, but sometimes action is more so.
And we writers mustn’t forget that.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Emergence Cover Reveal

Here is the cover for Emergence, Book One of Hypostasis: A Space Opera.
It was designed by Black Fox Designs.



Here's the blurb:
I await thee, Iara—the Book of Elem
A planet said to be heaven itself is about to appear in the firmament. The armies of the Empire and rebel factions prepare to stake their claims but an ancient evil has emerged and its eyes have been fixed upon Iara for millennia.
A runaway and a cult apprentice will both find themselves drawn into the core of this conflict. Their destinies are tangled with those of the Empire, the rebellion, the Church of Elem, a menagerie of monsters, and the universe itself.
Heresy, fellowship, valor, and darkness will all emerge—and be tested to the breaking point.
And the preorder link: https://www.amazon.com/Emergence-Space-Opera-Hypostasis-Book-ebook/dp/B07T1RSVX6

Available August 3!!!

You can enter the giveaway below for a chance to win a paperback ARC, one of two ebook ARCs, an original art card, or a set of my Weather Caster books in ebook!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I'm really excited for this release and can't wait to share it with you.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Two Pieces on the Internal Being

I rarely used to write this kind of thing. But, since listening to poets read their struggles at open mic nights and the candid yet richly metaphorical lyrics of Twenty One Pilots, I have tried it myself and found that regurgitating my mind's chaos can be cathartic, if generally unfit for human consumption. Most of them are dead-end complaint-style exposition. Like, dear self, why are you such a disaster?
But I wrote one with a pretty metaphor that pleased me. And then I wrote one that wasn't quite an answer to the first, but could be. At any rate, I feel like it's two sides of a coin. It's a negative view and a positive view, side by side. Sort of borrowing imagery from TØP and Björk in a few places, with ships and video loops. So, here they are. Just because. I guess it's for myself; I do too much Hamlet-ing.

Part One: Screaming Creatures and Ships
Sometimes, it's loud inside. As if a small creature is trapped in a dark cave somewhere deep inside. It is wailing, but the sound is lost in the exitless cavern. It reverberates and builds, pressurizing like a steam engine. But there is no outlet,  no safety valve.
Surrounded by others, isolated humans, disconnected,  all pretending. Do they have screaming creatures inside? Or hollow caverns? They may, they may not, but no one will admit it, no one will say, no one will ask.
So we just keep pretending. Pretending we're ok. We remain as islands, isolated by waves of shyness, currents of shame, salted with the savor of safety.
We close off our trade routes and scupper our ships.
What foreign cultures will we develop in our isolations?
I just want to sleep all the time.

Part Two: Circuit-Breaker
You can make yourself a victim. It will feel good. You will be sour with bitter hatred and sorrow. It will feel good. It's not your fault, you have been hurt by others: people, the world, destiny, even another aspect of yourself. Your problems were caused by another. It's not your fault. It will feel good.
But it's a trap. It's a cycle, a circuit you lock yourself into. It feels good to feel bad. You nurse your sorrow like a baby. That baby will grow and grow and become heavier and heavier. One day, it will consume you. It feels good to feel bad. But it still feels bad. It's a trap. It's a cycle. A treadmill you can walk and walk and walk and get nowhere. Step off of it.
It feels bad.
Leave it behind. Abandon the child of sorrow and let it die on the rocks, un-suckled. It won't be easy. But you can release yourself from the cycle. Stop repeating the video-loop. Release play and look forward. You can let yourself out of the trap and leave self-pity behind. Sadness and hardship might not leave right away. But now you have the chance to escape them.

It will feel good.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Cottonwood. A Poem.

This is an utterly random poem/thing I spontaneously wrote today while picking up a load of hay for my sister's horse. We drove by a slough and it had just rained and the window was down. I've always loved the smell of wetlands, water, marshes, rivers, and cottonwood trees...so this weird poem was born. If you can call it a poem.


Trees, you grow by the water.
I smell you.
Cold breeze, cold day, moist is the cool cool air on which your scent claws it's way to me, bloody and sweet like the dew of deep sewer gods. A bitter sweetness of rotting things and liquid. Ducks.
Your light reproduction would float on the gentle winds, tufted and soft, but the air is too thick with recent rain.
Trees, you grow by the water and your veins are filled with its fragrance.
Silvery bark and whispering leaves.
I smell you.
Mud is between your toes, oozy and dank like the meme. Dead things are in it and live things, squirming. Life is struggle and tiny lives burrow in the muck, fighting and killing and eating. Between your toes. If you could wiggle them, you would crush millions of lives. And duck shit.
I smell you.
Rotting grass, you are sweet and caress the ankles of the naked tree. Erotic and slimy.
Towering over it all, you grow by the water and clap your tiny, multidunious hands in a fluttering rhythm like Björk. You are not Björk, but a cousin to that pale-skinned saint-tree.
You grow by the water and its music lulls you to sleep so that you do not move your toes and squish the dark muck between them in oozy fountains of duck shit.
Sleep then, and do not kill...until the lightning strikes and your boughs crack and fall down down down through the yards of sparkling air to crash through the rusted roof of a Nissan and crack the ball cap of a scuzzy trailer park red neck.
I smell you.
Cottonwood.

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

An 'Official' Announcement

Greetings,

I've been tackling some changes and new challenges in my author endeavor lately and I figure it's time to make an 'official' announcement regarding it.

I have recently re-released my Weather Casters series as independent ebooks and am in the process of doing the same with the paperback editions and both versions of Ambulatory Cadavers. I'm not ditching my lovely publisher, but they are sadly phasing out of publishing and have very kindly released all of my rights back to me, along with all the formatting and covers, which is why I chose to simply republish immediately, rather than taking the opportunity to re-brand and re-release completely. I have other fish to fry but want to keep my back catalog up and running. Little Bird has been wonderfully supportive and I will always cherish the family of authors I'm now a part of. We're still doing this together. We've got each others' backs.

So, as this new indie route opens up, I'm going to attempt to be more diligent with my newsletter. Yes, I know how that went last time...but there's always tomorrow, and I'm exciting to see what tomorrow brings. I have new books in the works, and although I'm not sure if I will go indie with all of them, or try and land a traditional publisher, I want to share that journey with you.

Yes, you guessed it, this is a newsletter sign-up push. I want my subscribers to be the first to read about new releases (maybe the first to read them, even) and whatever else tomorrow may bring. I also want it to be a subscription of exclusive content. I've written a short (horror?) fairytale that will be in the first issue of my new newsletter, along with some exclusive illustrations. I don't want to spam you with sales, I want to give you gifts. And alert you to sales, of course, but good must come with some evil. I want to reward the faithful few, who will actually sign up for this. If you love my writing, I am eternally grateful, and I love you. So. Sign-up, because I want to show you my gratitude. A writer isn't much without a reader.

Disclaimer: my newsletter will probably not be on any kind of schedule. It will be like me: random and slow. But that means less dings in your inbox and hopefully quality rather than quantity.

Sincerely,
McCallum J. Morgan

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

A More Positive Piece of Personal 'Poetry'

Happiness
Happiness has been made into myth.
We seek it, we yearn for it.
We dream of soft, gold-colored days, foggy with impossibility, and tinted with shimmering desire. Always in the future, future-bound.
We say if I had this, I would be happy. We say, happiness is thus and thus, and since thus and thus are missing, happiness cannot be here. Dreaming is good, dreaming gives us hope when it is dark, gives us the ability to move forward.
But if we are asleep: if we dream too hard at all times, we fill our eyes full of glittering gold so bright we cannot see the gold that shines around us.
With our virtual reality headset we see a great golden chalice, brim-full of Mead. We reach for it, but our hand passes through, unable to grasp this beautiful vision, which is not vain in and of itself, but focusing on it at all times prevents us from seeing the shining cup of joy that sits beside it in the real world erased by the vision of the alternate, virtual reality.
Dream. But be content.
Contentment is the secret to happiness, and it is available at any time. Not just tomorrow.
Remember to drink deep the cider of autumn while its beauties surround you, though you might yearn for the sweetness of spring. Remember to bask in the sun-glow of friends while they surround you.
Remember.
Happiness is now.
Happiness is always there, just like sadness. All you have to do is look.

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Fear

Here is another piece of personal 'poetry.' It's about my lifelong struggle. As a kid I was outgoing...fearless maybe...weird. All I am now is weird. As a teenager, I longed to belong. I wanted so much to be outgoing, to have lots of friends. I still want that, but to a degree I've given up the fight. I know where I am and maybe even how to get out, but I'm scared to. And that's what this piece is about. I don't normally get personal on this blog, but here it is. No one will read it anyway ;)

FEAR

I fear being despised above all else.
I will not risk it.
To the point of rejecting others will I avoid the risk of being despised.
To the point of self-destruction.
To the point of no return.
I will hide my true self in a cloak of stolid invisibility. I will cover myself with a camouflage. I will build a wall around myself that cannot be breached. I want to let you in. But I won't.
You might attempt to scale this wall, or find a window to peek through.
I would throw you a rope, I would defenstrate myself.
But I will not.
You are rejected. But not because I do not love you. Not because I do not appreciate your attempt at entering my fortress.
I love you for your bravery. I love you for caring enough to try, even in the littlest way. Even if you only throw stones at my bastions. Even if you only call up to my ramparts with an inquiry: who liveth within?
I wish I could raze this castle to the ground and meet you on the rubble to embrace you. But I do not know how.
I despise this, but will not be despised.
I am too weak.