Karavansara

East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

New contract, new book

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Boy was it fast!
I am happy to announce that my pitch for a big sea monster story (see previous post) has been accepted1, and the contract signed and delivered, so yes, I am going to write a book about a rampaging Livyatan melvillei… or half a dozen of them.

livyatan_melvillei_by_teratophoneus-dao0x8d

The general story, plot and structure are well defined, and I have a list of characters. So I’ll devote two hours each day, staring today, to outlining and to the preliminary documentation of the book – I’m writing science fiction, I want to get the science right.
verne-leaguesConsidering my background in paleontology and my passion for oceanography, I’m happily off to a good start:

  • I already have a lot of the information I need
  • for the information I do not have already I do have a lot of books on my shelves
  • and for the information I won’t be able to find in my books, what the heck, I’m smart enough to invent the missing bits and make them look believable.

I will keep a few good solid reference books handy – it is true that the bulk of the quick-and-dirty fact checking will be done online, but I like to have a few books at hand.
41DEQAK1NXL._SX350_BO1,204,203,200_I will certainly go back to Paul R. Pinet’s Invitation to Oceanography, a great introduction to the subject that I’d easily recommend also to non-specialists as a fine read on the subject of the oceans – the ideal book to get the right mood and mindset for my characters; and I’ll keep handy also Thurman & Burton’s Introductory Oceanography – the standard introductory book for biologists and geologists on the subject.

I will also prepare a list of questions that I will pass to my scuba-diving friends, to check hands-on observations.

Then I’ll set up the Scrivener files and all the rest and, in a bout a week, I’ll start writing. Two thousand words each night, and it will be over in one month. Barring disasters.

I’ll keep you posted as things develop – and my Patreon supporters will probably get a look behind the scenes once in a while2.
It will be fun.


  1. fun fact: my pitch was accepted about six hours after I was told by an acquaintance “pitches are useless”… I love when it happens. 
  2. right now, they are about to get a look at the actual pitch that sold the novel. 

Author: Davide Mana

Paleontologist. By day, researcher, teacher and ecological statistics guru. By night, pulp fantasy author-publisher, translator and blogger. In the spare time, Orientalist Anonymous, guerilla cook.

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