Plans for the New Year

I hope that everyone has had an enjoyable and safe celebration of yet another successful planetary transit around our home star. Being on my own, I indulged in a glass of rye whiskey, and then turned in at 22:00. Resolutions, or, as I might prefer to call them, “plans” have been laid for the year, and so I will share some of them here.

As I have already noted in previous entries, I am working on new books, and new editions of old books, for publishing this year. There are two new editions of Medousa being prepared, one of which will be a hardback illustrated edition. I am re-editing a new edition of Wednesday’s Child, and a new edition of Nabu’s Ignominy.

Medousa is a myth-based fantasy novel. It is a re-telling of the myth of Medousa, from her point of view. It’s scope comprises her entire life, from her early childhood to her death, focusing on Medousa as a woman, rather than as a monster.

Wednesday’s Child is a thinly fictionalized memoir of my life, specifically, how what my life could have been was destroyed by extreme religious belief, and how an ill-fated and ill-advised affair helped me to break free from irrational thought.

Nabu’s Ignominy is simply a collection of short stories and poems that I have composed over the years.

These three books are still available online, and I encourage those interested to please place their orders through Bookshop– the link may be found on my website.

I am also working on two new books: My Shaolin Dysentery, and And Where Is She Who Treads upon the Sea?

My Shaolin Dysentery is a memoir of my years living in Asia and my years studying martial arts. The name is taken from an incident in 2007, when I traveled with my shifu to China, and ended up falling deathly ill there. And even though I recovered (obviously), the after-effects helped to make my first visit to Mainland China “memorable.”

And Where Is She Who Treads Upon the Sea? is another fantasy novel focusing on the angel Azazel, and the Mesopotamian Goddess Asherah. In traditional Jewish thought, the one the Christians refer to as Satan (“ha Satan;” The Adversary) was simply the chief prosecuting attorney of the Heavenly Court. This story describes the fall of Azazel, and how he becomes the one today recognized as the Devil. His fall begins with his pursuit of a case in the Heavenly places that he should perhaps have left alone.

There are a few other short stories that I would like to re-publish as illustrated children’s books, and so I will be looking for artists with whom I can work. And the new edition of Nabu’s Ignominy will then be reduced to an even smaller chapbook of poems.

I am hoping to have both new editions of Medousa, Wednesday’s Child, and My Shaolin Dysentery ready to publish by July or August. I have set up my own imprint so that I can get my books into local brick-and-mortar stores, and so, again, as I have noted in previous entries, I am having to cover expenses myself. Currently, I am financing each step of the way from my own paychecks– copyright registrations…formatting services…editing…ISBN and barcode purchases…and so on. In order to offset costs, I was thinking of using Patreon (and I have a PayPal solicitations button on my website); but I have NO IDEA what to do with Patreon as an author. I know a lot of people who are creating graphic novels and webcomics who can, for tiered considerations, produce extra artwork and whatnot for Patrons to see. But simply WRITING does not seem to lend itself to such a platform. I was wondering if any of you, my readers, had any ideas? I mean, I could set up donation tiers, and promise, for example, a personally signed copy of a book of their choice should they join– But, living in Beijing, I could only mail these out once a year; and anyway, once a book is published, what else can I offer? Or, would it be better simply to forget about using Patreon, and continue financing myself out of my paychecks? I can’t think of very many ways to involve potential Patrons in my work. I think my creativity is in abeyance here.

Anyway, that’s it for what to expect this year! Well, for now, anyway. Updates to come as I think of ’em.

About Michael Butchin

I was born, according to the official records, in the Year of the Ram, under the Element of Fire, when Johnson ruled the land with a heavy heart; in the Cradle of Liberty, to a family of bohemians. I studied Chinese language and literature at Rutgers University, New Brunswick. I spent some years in Taiwan teaching kindergarten during the day, and ESOL during the evenings. I currently work as a high school ESOL teacher, and am an unlikely martial artist. I have spent much of my life amongst actors, singers, movie stars, beautiful cultists, Taoist immortals, renegade monks, and at least one martial arts tzaddik. I currently reside in Beijing's Dongcheng district
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