by Shelt Garner
Oh boy. This novel has gone in a direction I did not expect when I started working on this third draft. The general story is the same, but the there is a lot more character development in the first act. And my heroine is very…unique. She has a very Barry-like professional life in that she both owns an alternative weekly AND a strip club.
I really like this stark dichotomy because there is a lot of conflict that is generated and it is, in general, really weird and I’m a weird person. AND YET, the issue is that while “sex sells,” because of human nature and the needs of marketing, whatever else I might want to say using this novel will be overshadowed by the sex worker element of the story.
As such, I’m feeling a growing pressure to have a second creative track. Even though I think the new, more interesting direction the novel is going in great, I also know that I may be so wrapped up in the writing of this novel that I’m being extremely delusional.
I am a smelly CIS white male, after all. If I was a twentysomething transgendered undocumented person then, lulz, yeah, I probably would be safe in writing about a stripper cum newspaper publisher who solves a small town murder mystery.
But, like I said, fuck it. This is my new vision for this story and I’m willing to endure the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, come what may. But that doesn’t stop me from realizing I probably need a back up story to pitch in case literary agents think the novel is so bonkers and unbelievable — and maybe even too long — that they will just laugh at me.