Saturday, October 21, 2006

Book on Malaysian anecdotes - collecting submissions

At least they're going to pay you with 1 free book and some MPH vouchers! Closing date is Oct 30th.

On another note, my agent came back from the Frankfurt book fair. And he says:

1. He's collected a lot of publisher contacts, and many are interested in Billy Lang. BUT they want to see the finished manuscript naturally. I asked if it was possible to shoot for the moon (to quote Cecelia Ahern in PS, I love you) and talk to Harper Collins. He said it's always possible.

2. Note that these things take a long time to get. Months. Sometimes years. So an interested party doesn't always mean it will work out.

3. He's even got a few interesting in republishing Dark City for the UK market. Including the one that did Shanghai Baby because they're interested in Asian works. We'll see what comes out of that!

Meanwhile, he says there's a Singaporean publisher really interested in collecting Malaysian Ghost stories, and he asked me to write it. I said, "Are you kidding? I'm writing Billy Lang AND collecting for Dark City 2. Whad'ya think I am? An octopus with 8 arms and 4 writing brains?"

So if anyone's interested to get published, you know what the Singaporean market craves for.

Ah! Importantly, I might have my first story already for Dark City 2. I won't reveal the contributor yet but I really liked the plot and was quite pleasantly surprised/shocked at the ending. I asked the contributor to rework the story to make it longer and more suspenseful.

And the rest of you fellow writers, bring your contributions on!


Lydia Teh said...

Xeus, all the best on your various projects! Wah, so fast got contritbution for DC 2 already.

Tunku Halim said...

Aiyah! You so good one Xeus . . . doing very well and got lot of writer friends somemore!
I tink I can write a nice horror story about my mother who turned into a pontianak!

Seriously . . . I haven't written a a real horror story in years but would like to submit one. Have you got a sample story from Dark City floating about on the internet?

Xeus said...

Lydia, actually got 2 already! Looking forward to yours :)

Tunku Halim, if you are the famous horror writer, you are more than welcome to submit. Dark City is definitely not on the Internet! It's copyrighted. But the book is available in all major bookstores and minor ones too. And even if you're not the famous horror writer, sure - all submissions are welcome.

Tunku Halim said...

Xeus, although I might say I'm the "famous" horror writer, we can never be too sure on the internet . . . As I won't be in Malaysia for a couple more months getting to MPH or Times is going to be difficult. So how?

There might be other overseas Malaysians who might also like to submit and so it might be good having something available on the net. 500 words would do.

Xeus said...

Tunku Halim, ah, I didn't realise you were overseas. The book is copyrighted and cannot be posted on the Internet in any form, at least not yet. But if you would write to me on email, I might be able to post you 500 words of one story, though it will be very far from the twist, which is usually 4000 words away or so.

Alternately, the Star has obtained the rights to serialize two stories from the first book, which might be appaearing in Nov. Overseas Malaysians can look out for it.

Xeus said...

And sorry, Tunku Halim, one more thing. Dark City is not actually technically horror. It's a collection of short stories with Twists in them and can run the gamut from horror to romance to ironic to science fiction, pretty much like the first book. I think I only had a couple of horror stories in the first book. The mood is generally macabre, it's true, but it's not pure horror.

The important thing is that all stories must have twists in them that hopefully nobody can see coming a mile away.

Tunku Halim said...

That's good to hear. Horror by itself can be quite limiting. So we're talkiing basically plot driven dark fiction.

Good original twists though are pretty hard to come by! Have to put my thinking cap on (the one with the skull on it!)

Xeus said...

Yes, I like that - plot driven dark fiction :)

Twists are not as hard as most people think. They belong to very few categories. Most twisty stories are derived from probably 7 - 10 original twists!

Lydia Teh said...

Xeus, what are those 7-10 original twists?

Hi Tunku Halim, nice to see you here.

Xeus said...

Lydia, hee hee. Write to me and I'll tell you privately. I've employed all of those tricks for Dark City 1 already. They were never actually taught to me. I learnt them while 'studying' Roald Dahl, Jeffrey Archer and Edgar Allan Poe.