Ever heard of the parable of the blind men and the elephant? I will do my best to make this a short read but it goes a little something like this:
A group of blind men hear about a mysterious beast known as only the elephant. They want to get an idea of what the beast is about, so they touch it. But they only touch one part. One touches the flappy ears. Another touches the smooth tusks. Another touches the tail. Later on the blind men meet and take turns trying to describe the creature they experienced. Ultimately, they cannot agree because what each man touched was so wildly different than the other.
Writing a supernatural series like The Strange Air often feels like that parable. Whenever I try and bring a part of this massive world into the light, it’s becomes that elephant. And I’m a blind man.
It’s not just a tusk. Or a tail. It’s all of it.
My inspiration for the concept behind The Book Of Witness collection came from three places.
1.) Fiction readers want more short content. The novel is still king in fiction, but a short read performs well. Studies of Amazon buying behavior provide market insights proving this idea.
Readers want short fiction.
2.) I already have quite a few short pieces in the Strange Air series written. Going back a few years, every time I wanted to develop something in my world, I would write a witness account.
As a result, my Strange Air file was bursting with little “witness testimonies” as I liked to call them.
3.) Time did nothing to sour my enjoyment of these stories. Skimming back through my files, I found gems. Whether it was a character or a situation, I felt good about my ability to produce a short read.
At first, bringing out a volume of stories because it makes market sense offered conflict. Seeing how I had already these stories though, and readers want them, it just made sense.
Once I decided to go through with publishing the Book Of Witness project, the real hard part followed. Deciding on four witness testimonies that I liked.
The first volume contains the stories of four Canyon County residents and their encounters with the weird. If you have read The Lies & Truth Of Doctor Desmond Brice (thank you!) you’ll recognize a few locations. Some of the characters may be familiar too.
The stories are not connected. Events take place more than a century apart in some instances. These stories are interrelated though, each offering a unique peek at the weird.
Whether that peek be at the tusk or tail.
The first volume of The Book Of Witness is due soon. Sign up to my email list for updates on where and when you can get your copy of the book.