Voice. (© 2015, F. P. Dorchak and Lon Kirschner)
Sex, love, and metaphysics. This intense sometimes explicit story is about what people do in the dark…especially when they’re hiding from themselves. A daring, sexy—even inspirational—read that explores relationships both familial and romantic and the tragedies that result from fractures in both. Voice is hard-hitting and unflinching…even uncomfortable…a novel for anyone who’s ever loved more than one.
After 16 years (18 if you count start to finish) and much angst, this novel is finally seeing the light of day! It’s also my longest published novel to date, at over 120,000 words.
Voice—my sexy, visionary fiction—is now available! Is it literary? Visionary? Erotica? Romance?
Truly, it is a little of each. But, whatever it is, it is my most mainstream effort ever. As I’ve said multiple times, I never wrote it, never intended it as erotic fiction. I still don’t even picture the story that way in my head. It is a story about people. It happens to have some explicit sex scenes in it, just like some novels have explicit violence in them. It turns out I actually wrote it as more of a love story: it’s a story about a guy who falls in love with a voice in his head.
I never had the plot nor story outlined…it just came to me as I wrote it. And I honestly did not know how it was going to end until I hit the “.” key after the last word in the manuscript. I do not exaggerate. I remember this vividly: I was banging along on the keyboard, excited how things had unfolded…wrote the last word. Hit the period key. Went to add a next page…and paused.
It was perfect. It surprised me. I ended it right there.
I’ve written a few “apologetic” pieces about the whole “erotica thing,” but…no more apologies.
It is what it is.
Writing Voice did more than expand my writing…it expanded my mind. My understanding of what I feel I’m capable of doing. Voice helped me go to emotional depths I’d never gone to before. At least in my own head. You, the readers, will tell me if I hit the mark or not. But, writing Voice took me down emotional rabbit holes. I found ways to write about the deep, sometimes hidden and painfully emotional details deep within stories. Which is really want I’ve wanted to do and hope I can do again. I’ve always wanted to write powerfully moving stories about the human condition. I didn’t want to just write about aliens or the supernatural. I wanted to write stories that were emotionally kick-ass as well as paranormal. I want to make people cry. Anger them. Excite them. Voice helped me learn how to “go there.” In Psychic I wrote a highly unpleasant rape scene. It was needed, so I did it. I didn’t flinch away from it. That scene’s power and mechanics came from having written Voice. In The Uninvited, I wrote graphic violence. I had to. They were important to the emotional context of the story. The ability to write out those scenes grew out of having worked on Voice.
And the utter irony?
When I finally made my way back to Voice and made that decision to actually follow through and put it out there…all the work I’d done on all my other novels all came back to help in making Voice the absolutely best, the most honest, emotional, and powerfully uncomfortable work I’ve ever created. And I’m proud of it—and I don’t use words like “pride.” If it wasn’t for Voice, none of the other novels would have been as good as they are…and if it wasn’t for the other novels, Voice wouldn’t be as good as it is. Or so I’ve heard from a couple readers (you just can’t trust me…).
And it is a powerful, emotional journey…but, really, that’s up to each of you to determine. I can’t please everyone, as a couple of my reviews show.
Sex, love, and metaphysics. This intense sometimes explicit story is about what people do in the dark…especially when they’re hiding from themselves.
I love this story, the setting. The whole gestalt. ERO and Voice rank as my favorite efforts. I hope you will also get lost in Voice and find the story. I did wonder if a couple of those who proofed and read it would ever talk to me again…and, well, so far they are. So, I have that going for me…which is nice….
Of those who’ve already read it, one reader told me half jokingly she wasn’t sure she could look me in the eyes “just now” when we first talked after her having read it.
That was so cool!
It meant I’d written something that had her look at me differently. And if she looked at me differently…how differently was she also looking at others? The world?
That meant I had expanded someone’s Weltanschauung.
That I had given another a different perspective.
Which is SO cool!
But I hadn’t done this alone!
There were others. Named and unnamed. I can never thank enough those who took a chance on this story—and me—to read it. Those who listened patiently to my conversational angst about should-I-or-shouldn’t-I? In one case, Mandy Pratt, who did the lion’s share of proofing and editing, having spent April to July picking things apart and pointing out misspelled words (dang it!) and messing with my head with shades of meaning—and, oh, let’s not even begin to talk about my own annoying employment of M-dashes and ellipses!
Yes, she kept me honest. Thanks, Mandy!
To Edie, Amy, Karen, Lon, and Joseph—thank you all for taking time out of your life to help out in the various ways you all did! Amy—you read this twice! Amy, an actual editor, read this back in 2002 or 2003…and when I asked if she was up for reading it again, she actually leapt at the chance (okay, maybe not actually launching herself up and into the air, but consider that “artistic license”…)! Karen, for helping me refine my “pitches” (Karen was there at the beginning, waaay back at a writers conference in the late nineties—thank you for sticking with me through all this, Karen!), back cover text, sounding board, et cetera. Joseph Reininger, no longer in the book retail business, was the first to read Voice and, again, waaay back in the 90s, and his reception of it literally stunned me. Never had I ever received such glowing praise (his is the blurb in the front of the novel) for anything I’d written up to that point! And he sold books! Reads tons of them. Wow. Joseph, yes, it’s finally going to see the light of day—thank you for all of your support!
And perhaps the oddest thanks goes to Joelle Yudin.
She was an Associate Editor at HarperCollins from 2000 – 2006. I’d sent a query to a publisher, and the long-and-the-short-of-it was that it had gotten routed to her. She’d read it, and on January 3, 2003, had sent me the following note:
“<Name withheld> passed along your proposal to me for my thoughts. I found the premise to be quite intriguing and so I shared it with my colleagues. Unfortunately, I will be passing, as I could not get them excited about it. I wish you the best of luck with this.”
I looked back in my writing ledger (yes, I have one; I keep track of things like this), and on January 23, 2003, at about 11:20 a.m. MT, I called her.
Yes, actually called her and I actually got her.
I wanted to know why the oligarchy’d passed on it. I do remember she’d been so kind and easy to talk to and didn’t slough me off in the slightest. What I wrote in my ledger was that Joelle said she thought my writing was good, my “voice” (heh-heh, pardon the pun) interesting, but her colleagues thought the manuscript “small,” in that they were unsure if it would “stand up in the market.” That it was “all about the $$$.” That the “size” of the piece wasn’t “large” enough and they recommended a small publisher. Then, at the end of all my notes I’d added: “Very (underlined) nice lady and open and forthcoming. Even said ‘sorry.'”
So, Joelle, I will always remember you and your kindness…your interest in Voice. Thank you for all of it! If I can ever get in contact with you, I’m sending you a gratis copy or two!
So…here it is.
Now what??, Mandy had asked. Now what, indeed!
I gotta find something else to work on….
Voice is available at Amazon.com (e-book and trade paperback), CreateSpace, Barnesandnoble.com, and Smashwords.com. There will be additional outlets as the distribution “takes.”
If anyone would like a signed paperback, feel free to send this or any other of my work to the following address—WITH THE PROPER POSTAGE OR IT WILL NOT BE RETURNED. I will use any unreturned books as free giveaways. Send to:
F. P. Dorchak, P. O. Box 49393, Colorado Springs, CO 80949.