Thursday, January 5, 2023

Follow the White Rabbit

For the past three consecutive years I’ve participated in NaNoWriMo which, along with thanksgiving, is a November tradition at least among writers. The idea is to start from scratch each November 1 and write and finish a short novel by November 30. My initial entry was Wonderland, in which we follow Detective Alice Dodson to the city of the future (picture Fritz Lang’s Metropolis) in response to a summons from Police Detective O’Hare. Yes, Alice followed the white rabbit to Wonderland. She meets a variety of vaguely familiar characters, such as the Tweedle twins, officers Dee Tweedle and Dom Tweedle; Mademoiselle Milliner (a mad hatter and socialite), her manservant Haigha and her ever-present tea party guest the narcoleptic Mr. Dormaus; socialite the Duchess and her mysterious daughter Cheshire; and Alice's new partner, Police Capt. Jim Hooker, aptly nicknamed “Hook” because of his metal appendage. Alice hunts for her missing sister Wendy, whom she fears may have fallen victim to a white slavery ring run by Wonderland’s gangland element led by Edmund Tusk  (“the Walrus) and his partner-in-crime Carpenter. Alice fear she is losing her grip on reality and wonders if she is slowly going mad.


The following year, in my second NaNoWriMo entry Oz, readers meet Zebediah Hugson who has booked passage on The Wizard of Odds with Cap'n Bill and his first mate Trot to sail from Emerald City, Kansas downriver to Wonderland in search of his missing cousin, newspaper reporter Dorothy Gale. A guilt-ridden Tinka Belle has fled Wendy and Peter Pan’s luxury penthouse suite in the Wonderland Arms Hotel towering over the futuristic art deco city of Wonderland and returned to her roots in the dark underbelly of the city of tomorrow – the slums of Wonderland, where she shares an alley squat with her young friend Tip, a boy with a long-held secret and a hidden past.


This past year, my third NaNoWriMo entry Neverland finds pedophile Peter Pan enticed into joining river pirate Jolly Roger and his vegetarian pet vulture Gertrude on a quest for buried treasure: casks of water from the legendary Fountain of Youth that hold the promise of eternal youth. But also searching for the treasure are pirates Gentleman Starkey and Mister Smee; the dragon lady Tiger Lily and her assistant Jack Pumpkinhead; and Gen. Jinjur and her army of punk rock lesbians.


While the trilogy will eventually be collected into an omnibus edition later this year, Neverland, the third and final volume, has just been published and to celebrate Amazon is offering the predecessor volume Oz for only for only $5.78 (paperback and e-book) -- an insane 61 percent discount! All three volumes are available in print, e-book, and audiobook formats.

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