Flammarion Immersion

Writing has been my priority for may years now, but there was a time when I split my energies equally between writing and music. I've been in many bands, and recorded a few albums, but I've been on a long hiatus from the world of sound.

I have started a new project—my first in ten years. It's called Flammarion. It will eventually become an actual band with songs and vocals and records and all that, but for now, it's the foundation for a musical experiment I'm calling Flammarion Immersion.

Flammarion Immersion is a different kind of show. It's not a band inserted onto a stage to pump music through the house PA while the audience drinks and talks. It's a focused immersive experience.

You sit or lie down on blankets in the middle of the room.

There are 5 amps placed in a circle around you.

 

Each amp plays a different signal, singing to you from distinct positions in the room, creating a spatial, three-dimensional sound that envelops you.

The sound is a soft, lush swirl like sinking into a warm ocean or floating through vast spaces. I play a vintage electric piano (Fender Rhodes) and a unique analog synthesizer (Theravox) run through many effects and loops to create rich organic tones with more grit and character than typical ambient music. The emotions are gentle and warm, with moments of yearning and occasional soaring peaks.

 

It does not go dark. There is enough darkness in the world right now. It nods to pain but continues to lift upward.

Everyone is quiet—the lights are low, your phone is off—and you just backfloat in this sound for 30 minutes. Maybe you close your eyes and dream for a while. Maybe you meditate. Maybe you let yourself cry in the safety of this melodic cloud, where no one can see you, no one is looking at anyone, but you can feel their comforting presence around you.  

 

All of this is very new and still developing, but I'm really excited about the concept.

I'm performing Flammarion Immersion for the first time at the Fremont Abbey in Seattle, tomorrow (11/13) at 8:30. It's FREE.

Just show up, lie down, let the chaos of this week wash away, and wake up Monday ready to fight.

 

Burning World slow burn

Remember book trailers? They were a cool idea that was almost never executed well, with most publishers apparently passing them off to their teenage interns to slap together in Powerpoint rather than hiring any kind of actual filmmaker with a vision—let alone a budget!

I haven't seen a book trailer in a long time. They probably still exist, but they seem to have fallen out of fashion. Nevertheless, I wanted to make one for THE BURNING WORLD. I made one all by myself for WARM BODIES and I thought it was pretty cool. But when I asked my publisher if they wanted to fund a REAL trailer, something with style and flair and genuine cinematic artistry, they looked at me like I was asking them to put on a vaudeville tap-dance show.

"We don't really do those anymore. They don't sell books."

So I gave up that dream, because it's been 5 years since I released a novel and my pocketbook is steadily shrinking I can no longer afford to self-fund my campaign. But I've been doing something else that's...kind of similar? But not quite as cool? But still kinda cool?

It's like...a very slow trailer...that moves at one frame per week...it's pictures and text. It's quotes from THE BURNING WORLD over photos that I took on my various travels. Slowly, one week at a time, it reveals a glimpse of what's going on in this story.

You can follow this slow show (and eventually other Warm Bodies content) on Twitter
Instagram and Tumblr.

3 months to go...
 

Van Fulla Books Tour

You know where I am right now? Sitting in my 1989 VW Vanagon Westfalia in a rocky field on the edge of a suburban construction site somewhere in northern California.

Why??

I am driving down the west coast on something I'm calling the Van Fulla Books Tour (#VanFullaBooksTour !) Because, see, my van is fulla books. Galley copies of THE BURNING WORLD, which I'm delivering to bookstores in order to make some kind of human connection to the people who will (hopefully) be selling my new book. Here's me with one of them!

TREASURE!

Hey friends. As you may have noticed, I'm doing a thing. I'm trying to sell The Burning World on my own little author store widget, for exactly 4 reasons:

  1. I get more of the money! It cuts out the evil empire that starts with A and ends with mazon.
  2.  You get more of your money, because I can set my own price and I've set it as low as it can go.
  3. (here's where it gets fun) I can give you things! Every preorder comes with a download of a very special and magical item that I will talk more about later.
  4. It allows me to do this referral game where you spread a link around and get a point for everyone who orders via your link. (and also for every copy you order.) When you reach certain scores, I send you increasingly rare stuff to say thanks.

THE BURNING WORLD is finished

Last weekend I read a book that I've read dozens of times already. Usually when I read this book, I get angry and dismayed and I want to change things about it, but yesterday I had a strange experience. I finished the book, and I didn't want to change anything. I read the last page and I thought, “You know what? It works. That was a damn good book." And then I sent that book to my publisher and said, “Publish this!"

THE BURNING WORLD update

Publishing is one of the slowest art industries because books are one of the slowest artforms. While films--even massive, globe-spanning blockbusters--can be shot in a few months, novels typically take several years to write, and while a film can be experienced in two hours and passed from person to person to reach hundreds of viewers in a matter of days, a book moves slowly. A book requires weeks or months between each link in the chain. It requires deep investments of time and attention. It doesn't travel virally on a surge of impulse clicks. A book demands a committed relationship. It's laughably ill-suited to the modern age.

WARM BODIES - THE NEW HUNGER - THE BURNING WORLD - THE LIVING

A few months ago, I told you I'd finished the sequel to Warm Bodies. I told you I was calling it The Living, and then I retreated into the editing cave to read what I had wrought. It was the first time I'd experienced the whole story as one piece, and upon reaching the end, I had a realization:

This wasn't the single mammoth tome I thought I'd written. In structure, rhythm, and theme, it was actually two books.