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What's On My Plate

Posted on September 3, 2011

I'm currently hard at work writing TURNCOATS, a YA novel about a zombie apocalypse where a living boy and a dead girl hold the key to stopping the end of the world. The title comes from the conceit that both the humans and the undead see the unlikely alliance of the two main characters as a betrayal. How the two survive in a world where neither are accepted is the crux of this three-volume series. The first book, OVERRUN, sets up the premise and destroys civilization. The other two books, OVERWHELMED and OVERTHROWN, will really explore the decaying new world and how humanity is taken to the brink and back by our two unlikely saviors. The creepy green image in the upper corner of this site is the cover to this book.

It's a big departure for me in that it is a grim piece with a ton of action, ingenuity and dire consequences. I'm two-thirds complete and will have it done by the end of October. I'll print it up as beta book through lulu.com and make edits over the winter. I'll pitch it in February as I continue to work on my next project, NED FIREBREAK. I'll start that book in November. Look for me to share development notes and blog posts on NED as I begin work on it.

In addition to currently working on TURNCOATS, I'm about to do edits on FLAME AND FORTUNE, which I finished in May. I've also got the final edits to do on STOMPER REX, a book I completed in January.

I plan on submitting FLAME to an agent who expressed interest in my work after I queried GRAHAM, and he liked it, but wanted to take on a completed novel rather than a shorter work like GRAHAM. It clocks in as a 94-page novella, and he didn't want to shop around a short story. Hopefully, his interest in Graham and invite to submit a longer piece will increase the chance of him giving my work serious consideration.

On the website front, I plan on getting TAGALONG up as an e-book by the middle of September along with regular posts telling you more about both GRAHAM AND TAGALONG in a bit more tantalizing depth than what's on the BUY page.

My goal is to ultimately land an agent, but I also love getting my work out there. To that end, I'll be trying a two-pronged approach of releasing my work myself as I continue to pitch projects.

Look for my next post to be all about a brainstorming technique called Changing Expectations. I teach my students this strategy and it is a major factor in generating many of my ideas. It's the driving force behind GRAHAM THE GARGOYLE's creation and in the development of NORTON THE VAMPIRE, a vampire who wanted to become a lifeguard. It's the second book in the Cascade series and the next e-book to jump onboard this site some time in December. And, yes, the main character is named after one of my favorite childhood authors, Andre Norton.

Be sure to check back in a week to get the scoop on one of the sweetest gargoyles around.

And for my students reading this site instead of doing their homework, did you catch the word of the day I slipped in this post?

Comment by JENSEN ABHAU on TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 6, 2011...
So... what's next? Also, I like that you're making a series about TURNCOATS. Mr. Clopper, I think you should make a sequel to GRAHAM THE GARGOYLE. I think that would be pretty cool. Maybe like: GRAHAM THE GARGOYLE RETURNS! Or... GRAHAM THE ALIEN? lol. So seriously, I think you should make a sequel. Or maybe a sequel to NORTON THE VAMPIRE. I haven't read that one so I maybe don't know if it's a good book to make a sequel. Did NORTON THE VAMPIRE have a cliffhanger? Okay, bye!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY MR. CLOPPER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! hope it was nice! have a good birthday:)
Believe me, the thought of doing a Graham sequel has come up quite a bit. It is asked about all the time. Have to get to that one of these days. I can definitely see his sister, Flenn, paying a much bigger part. Glad you like my little stony friend.

Thanks for the welling wishing. Had a great birthday, despite the tornado tension we had in the afternoon. See you tomorrow. Hope you managed to get lots of reading done for your novel group.
So maybe like, GRAHAM: THE POWER OF THE SISTER! Nope. Your choice!
I was thinking about it this morning and several ideas came immediately to mind. It'll be called GRAHAM THE GARGOYLE: FLENN'S FOLLY. It'll involve Graham's overly curious little sister getting in trouble with Medusa herself. I like the idea of a young gargoyle turning to stone before her time. Graham would then have to figure out how to turn her back along with dealing with the complications his newfound fame among his fellow villagers has wrought. How's that grab you? Needless to say, The Flying Mummy would once again make a cameo.

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