The new website design is finally live. I'm sure there are lots of little bugs and things that still need to be worked out, but there you are. The biggest change and the reason I wanted to redesign the website in the first place is the page is now centered on the screen. I know. I know. Very silly reason for a redesign. I also wanted the text to scale so that you could actually read it on a portable device, but I couldn't quite get that part to work the way I wanted. Or happpy with. Or whatever. Whole process took much longer than planned because this is only one of about six things I try to do with my very precious and limited free time. But, it is done. Yay!
Yeah, I'm more than a little surprised that I haven't posted a news blurb or anything about the publication of my new novel Pyrrhic Kingdom. Officially published June 27, 2013; although, I think the Amazon Kindle version is convinced it was published on June 26th, but I think I've got that fixed. I've been slow with the annoucements because the day-job has been busy, and then my computer decided to die a slow and agonizing death. It's still in the middle of its death spiral, and I just hope it holds out until I can purchase a new one next weekend. Didn't really want to do so suddenly, and it's not exactly as if I can afford a new one. But, I must have a computer. Anyway, if you had to describe Pyrrhic Kingdom in two words or less, you could describe it as Cthulhu Macbeth with the understanding that the plot will really kind-of sort-of remind you of Macbeth and with conspiracies, secret societies and ancient horrors from beyond time and space instead of ghosts and a rebellion. Macbeth starts out with a rebellion, remember?
The first new music composition in almost two years has been uploaded to the website. Sure, it's only a new vignette for flute and piano, but I've got to do something. Also, there is just something really appealing about the format. Short little bits of fluff that don't necessarily have to be anything more than what they are. Musical snippets. Musical ideas. Musical flotsam in the wild world.
I've uploaded a second Flute Vignette to my website. This one took a little longer. I think the first flute vignette was completed in about three days, which either means its not very good or I was just on fire when I composed it. Regardless, it set a bad precedent since the notion stuck in my head that these vignettes are easy. Wrong. This second flute vignette took somewhere between two and three weeks, including one evening where I just stared at the score for about two hours absolutely convinced that it was crap. Not doing anything with it. Just staring. And, occasionally burying my face in my hands. Oh, and groaning. Lots of grumbling and groaning. Anyway, I think it all worked out, and I'm currently rather pleased with myself about the final product.
Piano Vignette, No. 1, has been uploaded. More than the flute vignettes, I think this piano vignette is a better demonstration of the concept of touching upon the idea. This vignette really feels like it could have been longer. In fact, it could have been a lot longer or at least feels like it could have been longer. It just doesn't feel like it could have been longer without being a lot more complicated and involved, which is not what I was going for. It's complicated enough. The first draft was actually a lot more boring and ordinary. There was a serious danger of a boring and repetative accompaniment. I think I managed to avoid that.
My most ambitious vignette yet—ambitious in the sense that it actually involves three whole musical instruments—has been uploaded to the music page of my website. It also rivals all previous vignettes in the sense that it is very nearly two minutes long, which to my way of thinking almost but not quite takes it out of vignette territory. I also happen to be feeling particularly pleased and smug about this one so I'm going to let any knocks against it slide.
Okay, this is downright spooky. It was only about two weeks ago that I finished the last vignette. I'm going to burn out or something, I'm sure. If nothing else, it's only a matter of time before I become overly self-conscious about how traditional these vignettes are. I mean, they are practically in major and minor keys and everything. Oh, well.
The third vignette for clarinet and viola has actually been done for a few days, but I've been tied up with really stressful stuff at my day job so I just hadn't gotten around to uploading until today. This third vignette is probably the most conventional one that I've done, which nags at me just a tad since I really wanted more of a touch of the experimental, but then I just try to tell myself that experimenting with conventional is perfectly okay. Things are going to stay hyper-stressful at work for at least the next two weeks so I don't expect to make any progress on another vignette for awhile. I'm also trying to psych myself up to do something longer than a vignette, but recent time consuming events have me backing away from that notion. We shall see how things unfold.
These piano vignettes seem to do a really good job of just touching upon the idea. Nothing much to it. Hit the idea and get out. This second piano vignette is also really simple, and I hope I haven't subconsciously just copied something I heard somewhere or other. Anyway, I think this vignette is really cool.
Finally broke down and signed up for Sound Cloud, which appears to be a social networking website for sharing music and sounds and noise and stuff. The current plan is to upload the musical vignettes. We shall see if I get around to adding anything else.