A hotline psychic.
A lost teenager.
A Man With No Name.
After 20 years, it’s finally making it out into the world!
I started with the idea and began taking notes and research and all that back in 1994. I started actually writing the book in earnest, in 2000. And now—in 2014—Psychic is finally released! My longest (published) work so far, at 328 pages. It has been a long, hard road, and (I must say) I’m quite happy with the result…looking forward to how it will be received!
- Amazon.com: 3-5 Business Days (already available!)
- Amazon Europe: 3-5 Business Days
- Expanded Distribution channels: 6-8 Weeks
I’ve talked about this a little before (I’m sure, in some other post besides this one, but can’t seem to find it…), but Psychic was not an “easy” book. No, not at all. Nearly all of my manuscript first drafts were “easy” in that I just wrote them out—without an outline—I’d just sit down, put my fingers to the keyboard, and out came the story. I like to say I “vomit out” first drafts (ask me about my “fish” story—I love to tell it!). First drafts have taken me about a month or less, but it would be in the next several years where I’d work and rework the heck out of those manuscripts. None of them was any trouble, though…it was just the necessary mechanics of putting in the time, the research, the effort.
Psychic was different.
To be honest, it was a slog. Even as I wrote the very first words, the first draft, it was like running through water…or (more like) a swamp. I can’t explain it. It was the first manuscript that took any real effort on my part. And the antagonist, Victor NMI Black…he actually scared me. Whether or not it was the actual character or the idea of such an evil man like him possibly existing out there (physically or nonphysically…). I remember taking a walk one day, in the brilliant Colorado daylight, thinking about this guy…how nasty and “evil” he was…and actually got nervous…felt…uneasy—even while chiding myself in broad daylight that he was just a frigging character in a novel I had created, and I had control over him….
But did I…really?
The very idea of this guy scared me. He was flat-out mean. It surprised me that feeling of momentary fear I felt during that walk. To the story, well, that will remain to be seen from its readers if I did the proper job of transferring that image into the novel, but, to me, on a nonphysical, conceptual level, this character was extremely distasteful and scary.
It was like the idea of him was far too real.
Anyway, it’s not so much that I had “problems” with the story, the work, or anything “about” it, it’s just that it had a totally different energy about it. The novel involves messing around with the nonphysical in the physical. About fucking around with our sense of what’s real and what’s not. Our ability to utilize abilities that might well be considered out of our moral range. Not to mention such considerations, like, can facts change? If I really wanted to get all weird about it—all conspiracy theory on your asses—it was almost as if there really was some weird psychic conspiracy trying to keep this novel from coming out…actively and continually interdicting and meaconing me away from my efforts….
But I don’t really believe that.
<checking outside my office…the rest of the house…all locks are locked—it is oh-dark-thirty right now….>
Sure, such considerations and stories make for great promotional copy, but the reality of it is that each book is different. Each book has its own energy, and given the nature of the story, what I experienced was and is totally in keeping with the nature of the story’s energy. The whole absolute weirdness of it all. In fact, while working on the formatting of the manuscript for upload, my formatter, Pam Headrick (of A Thirsty Mind), sent me a strange e-mail: “Wow, Frank, what did you do?” She mentioned that there were all kinds of “odd anchors” and “strange text placement,” to which I replied I’d forgotten how I’d actually had problems with the file months ago (after a system upgrade) and had to save the file in a slightly different format to get it to work. How the system kept hanging and saves took, like, 15 minutes!
Find your happy place…find your happy place….
Psychic is “an extension” of Sleepwalkers. I could call it a series, but I don’t know that that would be quite right. Sleepwalkers is quite a different book than Psychic. Sleepwalkers is a pleasant metaphysical road trip, funny, philosophical, even a bit Richard Bach-ish, while Psychic is a nasty trip on the wild side of psychic activity. More dense. I’d use the term “complicated” but am finding that term overused and trite. And the only character common to both novels is the Man With No Name. Granted, perhaps less has been made of calling a collection of books “a series,” but I just prefer to think of them as “related.” Maybe I’m just resistant to the whole “series thing,” given how trad publishing is glutting the market with them, I don’t know (and I’m really resistant to being told what to do—real or implied). So…
I’ll bill Psychic as the ultimate conspiracy theory, and leave it as that.
It’s an alternate reality not only to Sleepwalkers (and deals with the Man With No Name’s origins) but to our “known” reality. Deals with the dark side of life we may never really know about…what goes on in the shadows of our so-called truths….
It’s about obfuscation.
The evil men can do.
Have you ever felt a different version of you (the “you,” here and now, not in some other reincarnational existence) did something else? Behaved differently? Maybe even died earlier than the you reading this, now?
What do we really know about our reality? Our facts? How aware are we of what we think we know? How much of what we hear and read are true—or were true at some point?
Do we notice when things…change?
Or do we dismiss the seeming inconsistencies in our lives and immediately discount them, because they don’t make sense with everything else we think we know and see in our lives? What we think is a solid “fact”? Hey, I put my ring right there—where the hell is it?
Psychic says, don’t discount this stuff. Do not ignore. Pay attention. The devil is in the details. Do you absolutely remember something that is different from what everyone around you is remembering? I’m telling you, no, you may not be crazy.
One might well ask: so what? What does it all mean and why should I care? Can we actually do anything about any of this? Can we effect any real change in a world that seems to be running amok?
The easy answer to that is that I’m an eternal optimist. I’ve plugged away at this novel for 14 years of my life, 20, in one way or the other. I always believe we can effect good and positive change in the world…and I believe once you’re made aware of “things,” made aware that, yes, facts really can change—that each and every one of us can change them—it opens up a new, exciting world for all of us. And…
What do you believe?
Will Psychic change the way you believe? How you perceive the world? Your life? That’s up to each reader. Life is all about beliefs.
What we believe drives how we behave.
In the end, Psychic is “just” a novel. It’s fiction. Victor Black…fictional. Yes, there are lots of facts in there, even a few facts from my own life. Weirdness, like the ring scene (yes, that really did happen, as did another similar experience, “The Grape“). And the “rototiller” and “Woomera” scenes. Facts, as you’ll see, aren’t always what they appear to be…if they ever were.
I do have a bunch of people to thank in getting Psychic released, and they’re all on my Acknowledgement page in the book, but I have to spotlight a couple of them: lots of thanks to Karen Duvall, of Duvall Design for the cover, to Pam Headrick, of A Thirsty Mind Book Design, for formatting the files…and to Joyce Combs and Mandy Pratt for copyediting and proofreading! With all the back and forth I’ve done, initially setting the novel in milieus, like 2005, then updating it for the likes of (man…the years, they pass by oh-so-quickly…) 2007, 2010, 2012, and even 2014…I finally settled upon 1994. Adding and removing all the details for each of those years was time consuming, to say the least, and it was here that Mandy did a great job keeping me on track and proofing my work!
I am currently only doing a trade paperback book. I find that e-books really aren’t selling all that great (for me), so am putting off creating those for later. So, don’t despair, at some point in the future, I’ll do the e-book version.
Where do I go from here?
I do still have some unreleased work in the various dark places within which I keep things like these, and will be revisiting yet another one. This one will be #7 in my list. Yeah, the “unnamed” one. We’ll see how that one goes and whether or not it will get released. After that one, I may get back to work on the one I started in 2011 (#11), but that’s so far into the future and who knows what the “facts” will be by that time…where I will be in my probable and alternate realities…but I do have a ton of work to keep me busy for a number of years, and would even love to compile a collection of my short stories….
With any of my work, feel free to pass on any of the graphics from my blog posts, tweets, Pinterest, et cetera (though I ask that you render proper attribution). If you need a book or a speaker at your local library, book club, or writer’s group, either in person or via phone/Skype, please, feel free to contact me, at fpdorchak “at” fpdorchak dot com (or leave a comment in a blog post). Post reviews at your favorite websites (if you’d like a book for a book review, please contact me at the above email). Need to fill a blog post? Interview me! Direct me to a library and I’ll send them some free copies. If you come up with any ideas, again, contact me at the above e-mail address. If you’d like a signed copy, send it to the following address: F. P. Dorchak, P. O. Box 49393, Colorado Springs, CO 80949. Take my books to work or the gym and flaunt their covers! Tweet and blog about them! Any way you can all help out to get the word out is hugely appreciated! Mention me to radio shows. Local writer conferences. Reader groups. Send my social media links.
As always, thank you for all your support! I can’t thank you all enough! Publishing is a team effort, and I always manage to find a great team—but part of that team is also the readers! I love what I’m doing and all the support I’m getting from all of you!
And again…pay attention to the details of your lives…let nothing escape your notice, however “insignificant” those details may appear.
What does it all mean?
I think that’s up to each of us to figure out.
Twitter handle: @fpdorchak
- Ring Around The Rosies (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Unearthing the Bones (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- A HUGE Thank You To All of You! (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Psychic Cover Reveal! (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- The Ring (fpdorchakrealitycheck.wordpress.com)
- The Unmaking of a Psychic (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Uninvited Blurbs Reinstated to Paperback (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- The Uninvited – Now In Paperback! (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- ERO – Trade Paperback Now Available! (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Wailing Loon (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Going Indie – What I’ve Learned (So Far) (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Going Indie – What I’ve Learned (So Far) – Part 2 (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Going Indie – What I’ve Learned (So Far) – Part 3 (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Going Indie – What I’ve Learned (So Far) – Part 4 (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Going Indie – What I’ve Learned (So Far) – Part 5 (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Going Indie – What I’ve Learned (So Far) – Part 6 (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Going Indie – What I’ve Learned (So Far) – Part 7 (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Going Indie – What I’ve Learned (So Far) – Part 8 (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Going Indie – What I’ve Learned (So Far) – Part 9 (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)
- Going Indie – What I’ve Learned (So Far) – Part 10 (fpdorchak.wordpress.com)