Just one week away.
August 6 is not just my birthday; it's also the release date for Part 1 of my five-part science-fiction eBook serial, "From Parts Unknown," This story and I have had our share of ups and downs ever since the concept popped into my head almost twenty years ago. The simple what-if question - "What if professional wrestling was no longer pre-determined?" - had me dwelling on it throughout all four years of college and for three years after that, when I struggled to figure out the right medium to tell this story.
It started out as a video game outline, then a treatment for a film, then at least ten drafts of a screenplay, until finally a novel that was finished in July of 2002 and published the same year by iUniverse. I thought that I had told the story in the best possible way. I was wrong.
If it weren't for iUniverse completely failing to follow through on a deal they called me to propose, I wouldn't be preparing for this upcoming eBook launch. Their sales department (which is pretty much the only department they have left) offered me this: if I order 25 copies of my book at 50% off, they'll add the eBook format to it for free. I took the plunge, I got my copies in the mail after just a few days, and then… nothing. Months passed and there was no sign of the 2002 version of "From Parts Unknown" on eBook.
Almost a year later, I was encouraged by Carolyn McCray to see if I could get the rights to the book back and then just release the eBook myself. I called iUniverse one more time to see if the formatting was at least in the pipeline. It wasn't. It had apparently fallen off their radar, as had I, so I told them that I wish to sever my relationship with them. Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on your POV), my sales had dried up so they had no problem whatsoever with letting me go.
I spent almost three years re-working the storyline and realized that it was getting much more ambitious and longer than I imagined, but thankfully, another idea popped into my head. "From Parts Unknown" would work better as a five-part serial, similar to what opened every season of G.I. Joe when I was a kid. Instead of one 500-plus-page story that was going after a niche market (There are plenty of sci-fi fans and plenty of wrestling fans, but I doubt there are many that want to read a story about a government subsidized wrestling promotion taking place over forty years from now), it would be five 100-page stories that won't seem as big of a hill to climb.
After spending all this time rewriting and then rewriting some more, I can finally say that Part 1 of this story is ready to go online. (It better be, since the release date is just one week away.) It will be exclusive to the Kindle, so anyone who has Amazon Prime or recently subscribed to Kindle Unlimited will be able to read this for free. For everyone else, Part 1 is just $1.99, and Parts 2-5 will be 99 cents each.
"But wait, Sirois!" you might be saying. "Is it going to be released on paperback?" The answer is simply, yes. Rocking Horse Publishing - the same people who were kind enough to allow "Excelsior" to play in their sandbox - will release the omnibus edition of "From Parts Unknown" in one paperback book in early 2015 (I'd personally love it to be in late March, since that's when WrestleMania takes place, but we'll find out). However, if you don't have a Kindle and want to read the serial as it comes out, you can download FREE KINDLE APPS HERE.
For those of you who have heard or read my constant rambling about this story, I want to thank you all for your patience, or for at least nodding, smiling, and giving off the illusion that you're listening. I hope you all enjoy this brand-new, fully updated version of "From Parts Unknown," and I promise you all that as soon this is uploaded, I will NEVER rewrite this story again.
And this time, I mean it!