The following is a (very) short story based on some of the concepts from my novel The Dreamshift Chronicles. I hope you enjoy it.

To The Void

It's all new to me – the sights, the sounds, the smell. None of this is like anything I could ever have imagined – though I must have. I mean, I had to have seen it all before or else I could not be here now. Somewhere, in a pocket of my mind, I knew this place was real, knew it existed. And so I came.

I really had no choice.
You see, I'm driven.

My hair moves as if gently tussled by a mild spring breeze. Yet, there is no breeze. I feel nothing against the exposed portions of my skin. No scent is carried to my nostrils. I open my eyes and they are greeted by the black. It's as if I am blind, but I'm not. I can see, but I'm not exactly sure how or what I am actually seeing. In this place, seeing becomes a relative term, something that is experienced with some other sense, something heretofore unknown.

I reach out with my hands – or at least I think I do – and feel nothing. But perhaps I do. Nothing is certain here. Everything is different, alien, unreal.

Whenever I had traveled to other realities in the past, I had always transitioned through the black. It became a transition point, the blank nothingness that is seen between the channels on your television set. But the more I traveled, the more I realized I could feel the blackness as I passed through it. There was a sort of subtle viscosity to it. It was almost as if it were reaching out to me, calling me, pleading with me to stay for a while.

During my still times, when I was not overwhelmed with the daily tasks of living, I would find the black crowding in at the corners of my mind, reminding me it was out there – calling. That's when I began to wonder if this black, this blank nothingness, were perhaps a something instead of a nothing. What if this thing we all went through when we transitioned was not a nothing, but a place. I mean, that's what this i...

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One day an idea hits us. We decide that we want to write a book, to put our ideas down on paper. We struggle. We labor through the process. But then the time comes when we complete our labor of love and decide we want to share it with everyone we know and even with those we don't. We come to believe that our book is ready to be published.

 

Publishing a book is no simple matter. There's so much that needs to done - much more than writing the actual manuscript, in fact. You have to edit and edit and edit again. And once you think you are finished with that, then you need to hire a professional editor and have them tear through your document. But even that is not the end of it. After you get your edits back, you need to start all over again, editing, editing, editing. I was amazed that after ten edits there were still things that were missed. My book had well over 150,000 words, so perhaps that comes as no surprise.

 

Editing, like the actual writing of a book, is only the beginning. If you've gone this far you've probably done more than the majority of self-published authors out there. So many skimp on the edits. But here's a hint for you: it doesn't matter how many books or papers you've written, or how well you write and know grammar - there will be mistakes and edits will be aplenty.

 

Now that the editing is all finished and the manuscript is as polished as it can be, now, surely now we can unleash our creative child into the world at large, right? But, once again, we find that things are not that simple. There is more to a book than a well written story. As I am sure you realize, there is the packaging – the book cover. Despite the old adage, people do, indeed, judge a book by its cover. If we, as authors, want people to read our stories, to engage in the lives of our characters, then we will have to package them in a way that will entice the reader. Sure, what is written is the main thing, but what good is a great story if no one's going to read ...

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Welcome! Exciting things are in the works! One of which is this brand new, shiny Dreamshift Chronicles website! Visit back here often to get the latest news and thoughts of D. L. Silverman (Hey! That's me!) and about the Dreamshift Chronicles! I'll be adding more very soon (I have a lot to say), especially about my experiences at both Shevacon and Mysticon, two sci-fi/fantasy conventions I was able to attend in Roanoke, VA.

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