East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

Twelve hours to go


Tonight’s the night.
No, not a rather sucky and sinister Rod Stewart song.

patreon_iconAt 9 PM, local time, I will set up a hangout with my Italian Patrons, to have a chat after months the guys support me. I’m really excited about this, because I owe big time to these people, and it will be great to finally talk to them, and discover what they like, what they think.
It will also be a way out of this hole of a backwater country village in the Astigianistan hills.
I can’t wait.

Then, at the stroke of midnight (actually 11 PM UTC), I’ll fire up Google Docs, and I’ll do my first session of public writing.
One-Two-Three: One problem, Two characters, Three thousand words.

Gray Vintage Typewriter English Language Day Social Media Graphic

So here’s some preliminary notes on how I’m preparing myself for the event, in case you are interested.

First of all – tonight I will write a story of the Contubernium the dark fantasy spin-off of my Aculeo & Amunet sword & sorcery series.
The reason is, I’m trying to do some publicity for Occult Detective Quarterly, a fine magazine that I am convinced should sell more copies. And so I’m trying to stimulate some curiosity in the punters.
I don’t know if I’ll move ten copies, or more, or less – but I think it should be done.


Ergo, tonight it will be Nennius Britannicus and Dunius Clericus and the boys… probably just two of the boys, as things stand right now, facing some supernatural menace in 276 AD Alexandria.

So, as preparation I have here a file with the complete lineup of Nennius Britannicus’ contubernium – my notes put together while I wrote The Hand of Isfet and Black Frog and Black Scarab, the essential to get the names straight and avoid contradictions.
I will also have a map of ancient Alexandria close at hand, once again to make sure I don’t mess with the geography.
All other research I’ll do on the fly.

Alison_CoursewareIntro_386As I already said, I’ll be using Google Docs, that I am finding pretty neat all things considered.
It will allow me to share the pages as they write them.
I will also try and find a way to communicate with my followers…

[basically opening square brackets and putting comments and asides in like this]

… because they will only be able to read, but not comment. Sort of a one-way thing, but that’s what writers do with readers anyway.

I have provisions – a pack of cheap Mars bars knock-offs to compensate sugar, and I’ll brew me a tanker of tea.

The whole thing will last five hours, and yes, I’ve been told it’s too much to write 3000 words, but actually

  1. I might go and write more
  2. By staying online for five hours I will allow people out there to drop by and take a look despite different time zones

stripper-shoes-double-as-tip-jarI am sad (or happy, depending on the moment) to report that so far nobody paid to shorten my writing time.
Pity, in a way.

And should this experiment work, we’ll do it the other way around next week – first a four/five hours writing session in Italian, then after midnight a hangout session with my English-speaking Patrons, if they feel like it.

Let’s see what happens.
We start the show in 12 hours.
I hope you’ll make it and drop by.



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.

6 thoughts on “Twelve hours to go

  1. Best of luck with it Davide!


  2. Looking forward to more of Nennius and the boys. Good luck!


  3. Might be the wine, but watching you write is both satisfying and motivating. I love this thing!

    P.s.: knitting circles weren’t probably a thing back then, but you could have the centurion think of a gynaeceum. After all, Alexandria was still very much hellenic at the time.


Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.