Announcing the Marlowe Kana Volume 1 Original Soundtrack by Sinewave Sionora (Yes, A Soundtrack For A Book)
Today is a very proud day for me. A project a year in the making is finally out in the wild. I VERY PROUDLY present to you: Marlowe Kana Volume 1, the Original Soundtrack by Sinewave Sionora:
I cannot tell you how proud I am of this record. First, it’s 100% original music, all inspired by Marlowe Kana Volume 1. Second, it’s expertly composed, performed, produced and engineered by Joey The Mad Scientist (Joseph Rhodes) and CVRT-1 (Jason Covert), who are geniuses. I’m not just saying that because I worked with them and they’re friends — they are literal geniuses. Jason’s organic, thick bass and guitar work complements Joey’s synths, drums, and vox in ways I couldn’t have possibly imagined before hearing it myself. I even contributed some crazy noises here and there!
About The music:
“Electronic” is the easiest term for it. If you like Massive Attack, Kruder & Dorfmeister, Aphex Twin, Tycho, or other artists who juxtapose deep thunk with intricate synth and live instrumentation, this is right up your alley. There’s elements of Vangelis (Blade Runner), Trent Reznor, and even grunge sludge like Sleep, Earthless, Clutch, The Melvins… There’s literally something for everyone on this record. But it’s not a gumbo of sounds — it’s very methodically orchestrated and each track is purpose-driven to communicate the feel and tone of each chapter of the book.
About Sinewave Sionora:
What started as a joke in a parody of “Music Review” podcasts that Joey and I did in 2016 became this crazy project called Sinewave Sionora. Shortly after I wrote Volume 1, I shared it with Joey. He immediately asked me if he could write some music inspired by what he was reading. My answer was “Wait, what? You really want to do that? HELL YES!” I’ve never heard of a book with a soundtrack before, but hell, why can’t there be one? Or, nine, as the case may be!
“I wanted to make something that was unique in it’s own right,” Joey said, “but had major hooks to the storyline. Everything from the music comes directly from the book in some form or fashion. It’s a pure cyberpunk album through and through and I am very happy to share it with the world.”
About This Album:
You can pay-what-you-want for the album at Bandcamp (even 0.00 if you want it for free — you know how I work, I don’t believe in forcing a toll for access to stuff I’m doing). You can also stream it free at Soundcloud, and it will be in iTunes, Google Play, Spotify, and other music services this week.
What You Can Expect From Here:
Eight more albums! Because there’s 8 more books! Music for volumes 2 and 3 has already been recorded, and we are writing more to go with the new stuff I’m writing in volume 4. So, good news — if you like this album, there’s MUCH more where this came from!
Hi there, fair reader! In case you didn’t know, I’ve written a new book. It’s a damn good book. I believe in this book with my whole heart. It’s literally what I’m betting my entire future on. So it means a whole, whole lot to me. It also means a whole lot to the folks who have read it so far.It’s gotten stellar reviews on Amazon from the folks who have read it, and the email has been great. One review sent to me just today:
“I’ve been mulling over what it is that draws me to MK [Marlowe Kana]. She’s a strong female lead, but it’s more than that. I feel like every teenage girl needs to read this book, every young woman, every pair of sisters. There’s something deeper to it…” — R.W.
And now that volume 3 (and thus, Book 1) is complete, it’s time to turn to promoting the book and trying to get as much attention for it as possible. Not just because I want to sell lots of books (but I do! But that’s not why) — but because this story deserves to be read. It’s something I have worked extremely hard on, which is not by itself reason enough for you to care, I know. And it’s tempting to tell you every single plot turn, subplot thread, character, and world-building element here in this post, but I really want you to discover those things on your own.
So, we will start with the absolute easiest way you can help me:
• Read the book.
It’s free on the website, and Volume 1 is free on Amazon, iTunes, Google Play, and Barnes and Noble! And Amazon makes it super easy to buy the three-volume ebook set of Book One, where you get to read about political and corporate manipulation of an entire society’s mental wellbeing through media. A cybernetically enhanced super soldier named Marlowe Kana — the nation’s biggest star and three-time United America’s Next Top Soldier winner — is convicted of treason. But a splinter group of citizens called The Sovereign aren’t okay with that, and they bust her out! The entire country’s military & security division — a combined police / army force run by Imagen, the corporation that employs literally everyone — hunts her down. The chase reunites her with long-absent family and friends in not so fun ways.
…I’m saying too much, aren’t I? I really want you to find out all about MARLOWE KANA by reading it. It’s GHOST IN THE SHELL (the manga and movie, not that terrible racist ScarJo vehicle coated in neon) meets SILICON VALLEY and people are loving it. And did I mention, it’s FREE? Go!
From there, here’s some other things that would really, really help:
• Sign up for the email list.
It’s also free. And now that things are rolling on the “spreading the word” part of this project, it’ll be the place where I announce things like the upcoming audiobook and soundtrack (yes, this book has a soundtrack!), the paper book, release of book 2 and book 3, and other cool things. The email list in question is found here!
• Tell your friends.
Let them know there’s this new book out there which is free to start reading that even people who “don’t read” are really loving. It’s especially written for fans that love science fiction and/or cyberpunk stories, but also want deep character-driven storylines and a plot well-rooted in modern events, with excitement at every turn.
There’s no getting around it: reviews drive sales and attention. Think about when you go to buy a thing on Amazon et al. First thing you look at: How many stars. Second thing you look at: How many reviews. You want to know you’re not buying a dud and wasting your time. It would be a HUGE help if you could toss up a review (honest ones of course! Even if it’s 4 stars or 3 stars or even 1 star… Just share what you think honestly. Of COURSE I would love 5-star reviews, but the truth is, if you’re motivated to review the book, I’m honestly more interested in what you think than in simply adding another 5-star review to the list). People are comparing it to William Gibson, which I think is too much for my brain to handle. But I’m honored!
• Help get the word out.
I have stickers, handout cards, and flyers I can send to you if you’d be willing to volunteer to hand them out. Place them in bookstores and coffee shops. Pepper your local college campus with them. Do you volunteer for a literary or comic convention and want some to stuff into bags? I would LOVE that! They’re beautiful. They’re elegant. They’re FREE. Just email me and we will connect it all up.
• Help me get reviews for MARLOWE KANA.
Do you run a blog or site? Does that blog/site cover books, science fiction, cyberpunk, geeky stuff, nerdy stuff, or anything in-between? I would love to send you review copies of MARLOWE KANA! Do you know anyone who writes for a site like that? Nudge them (gently! Please don’t beg) toward MARLOWE KANA and let them know this book rocks. Social review is ubiquitous in MARLOWE KANA, and is the method by which people get access to services and engagement. Wait, I’ve said too much.
• Do you own a billboard or a building in an eclectic neighborhood and would be willing to donate space for a mural?
I have a team of graffiti artists who would LOVE to do a MARLOWE KANA themed mural. Gimmie space, I’ll give you art! You’d think I’m being hyperbolic, but no — I’m serious. I’ll get my painter friends together and come slather your free space with art that rocks, and subsequently, markets my book, since graffiti features heavily in the plot line. But I don’t want to give too much away.
• Do you own a skywriting plane (or know someone who does)?
Let’s talk. I want to skywrite MARLOWE KANA in the skies of small towns across the country. No one will notice or care. But it’d be fun Instagram material, you have to admit! In the world in my book, skywriting is impossible due to the atmospheric generators that enable life to continue existing… But here in our world, it’s an option!
• Are you a game developer / conceptualist?
This story would make one hell of a game. I have ideas. You have talent. I’d love to talk to you about converting the IP into a playable badass story where people get to destroy things meaningfully… You know, in the context of a larger social narrative set in a world that forecasts the inevitable track that our real one is on? Yeah… that. Games feature very heavily in the subplot in the book as well, as the entire society is driven by entertainment. But they’re a different kind of game… I don’t want to reveal that part yet. Remember, I said I wouldn’t give too much away.
• Do you know anyone (or are you someone) at Netflix, Hulu, Amazon or Apple in show development?
Whooo boy, Marlowe Kana is just SCREAMING for the serialized 12 episode-per-season story release. Reviewers on Amazon have even said so. Imagine having your development hands around a GHOST IN THE SHELL type serialized drama that you could do all the things with that you really, really wish someone had done for that pile of neon-tinted crap that was the American release of GITS? Just imagine. Imagine it hard. Really, really get in there and think on it… Yeah, there’s a soft spot there, isn’t there? Well I have one too. And I want righteous justice for that travesty myself. It’s one of the reasons I wrote Marlowe Kana. Help me take that retribution to the next level, my new friend in show development. Let’s teach those folks a lesson in ACTUALLY GOOD NOT PANDERING CYBERPUNK AWESOMENESS that tells a story about the near-future wreck that we’re currently on track to becoming! Let’s show them how to correctly illustrate and narrate a future where one corporation controls all things, technology is a dependency to survival and not just a neat way to force your phone’s voice assistant to say “titty sprinkles”, and the consequences of playing God with the human body! YES PLEASE, LET’S!
…But you’ll have to read the book to really find out about all that stuff. Right. Yes. No more reveals. Back to how you can help me:
• Are you personally, yourself, Mike Lazzo at Adult Swim?
Mike, baby, let’s talk! Adult Swim’s core demo loves to laugh and you’re killing it on the yucks. But remember the days when you did Cowboy Bebop and everyone was like WHOA and you were like YEAH? This is a story that we can develop together that will satisfy that late-night need for darkly-humorous drama set in a visually stunning near-future cyberpunky utopia (yes, utopia… It’s a core part of the plot that the United American State is a utopia for its 40 million citizens, because no utopia can exist without somewhere else being a dystopia. The rest of the world serves as grist for the mill of the UAS’s constant tech dependency and… Well, that’s book 2 stuff. Let’s talk about that when we’re ready. I’m really bad at not revealing things).
• Do you happen to personally know David Fincher (Fight Club, The Game), James Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy), Gary Ross (Hunger Games), Steven Spielberg (Minority Report, AI) or any screenwriter attached to them?
Let them know you have one hell of a property they need to make a movie out of. It’s a gripping fast-paced politically-driven near-future social-commentary-lined story where a badass woman breaks things in dynamic fashion for good reasons. It’s up their alleys. And not just them — if you know anyone who wants to make Marlowe Kana into a film, I’m down. Super soldiers, biometrically-controlled environments, It’s just begging for the big-budget treatment.
• Are you, personally, David Fincher, James Gunn, Gary Ross, or Steven Spielberg?
Oh man… Wow. Well, this is certainly an honor! Wow… who would have thought that [David Fincher / James Gunn / Gary Ross / Steven Spielberg] read my little blog? Wow man… Just wow. I’m overwhelmed! I love your films! I really love that part in [Fight Club / GOTG / Hunger Games / Minority Report] where [technology-driven aspect of modern living] was used as a metaphor to show [aspect of psychology where the human ego strives to outdo the human brain’s limitations and subsequently sets it up for failure… Much like Facebook growing far beyond the bounds of being able to control their own platform and thus setting up the world — the no kidding, entire, literal fucking planet — for political hijacking by Russia due to the mass manipulation of emotional and psychological wellbeing through their shit platform]. That part rocked! Wow… Cool! Well, hi! Also, please make a movie out of MARLOWE KANA.
• Are you connected to an ancient spacefaring alien race who are scouring the galaxy looking for resources, and happen to have Earth on their radar, and are on their way to come conquer and subsequently ravish the planet?
Well, tell them not to, please. Cause that’s not cool.
Do you just like stickers and want some free ones?
Well, email me, and I’ll send you some. I’ll even cover the stamp. Just promise you’ll put them on that one notebook or laptop or iPad that you take to the coffee shop so other people will see it and ask about it!
As I’m sure you’ve all seen in some form or fashion, I’ve been writing a new cyberpunk sci-fi series called Marlowe Kana. Fiction in general is a new genre for me, much less Science Fiction and Cyberpunk. It’s been a hell of a ride so far, and despite all the pain, fear, aggravation and suffering, I’ve loved every second of it.
So, for my first Book Report, I want to share some of what I’ve been going through, learning, and beating my head against.
Writing fiction is hard. Like, hard hard. Like, harder than anything I’ve ever written before, hard. Up until this book, I’d only ever written one other piece of fiction, and it was terrible. In fact, longtime readers will know that it was the very first written iteration of this novel, only with completely different characters and plot. Everything else I’ve ever written has been journalism, opinion pieces, blog posts, anecdotal stories from my youth, and silly things. A few trolling pieces here and there. Some loud and vitriolic stuff. Some really important stuff about social matters, and other really important stuff about divorce, depression, self respect and just about everything else.
Thousands of pieces over 16 years. It’s only now that I’m doing fiction, for many reasons that I’ll get into in another post sometime. And let me tell you, this shit is no joke. It’s work. Fun, joyous, amazing, hard, tiresome, sometimes-you-wanna-set-fire-to-literally-everything-you-have-written-and-give-up-for-the-rest-of-your-life-frustrating, hellish, heavenly work.
First, you’re responsible for the reality of your work. Not just the physical writing – which by itself is a feat. 25,000 words is a tiny novella, and it takes a month or two to write if you’re writing every single day – and I’m doing five of those, per book, for a total of 15 volumes and 300,000+ words. You also have to get it edited, re-edited, and copyedited. If you’re self-publishing, then you also have to get it typeset, printed/digitized, get a cover designed and made, published in whatever form and stores, and market the thing. But the writing itself, that’s hard hard work. The sheer sticktoitiveness it takes to just sit down and chop away at word craft is a lot.
But that’s not even one tenth of the actual work. That’s just the typing. the WRITING… that is the super hard part.
For every single writer, this holds true: you not only have to create characters, settings, technology, scenarios, plots, motivations, story arcs and events out of thin air, you have to make them all make sense. More than make sense – you have to raise these people like children and tend to their environment like a cautious parent, if that parent was Nicollo Machiavelli. If you’re giving even half a shit, you also have to make each character independent, such that you’re not FORCING them into things, you’re guiding them there and seeing what decision they make, and then acting accordingly. And if you’re giving a whole shit, you have to eloquently describe ALL of the above to the reader in a way that lets them know what’s going on, without being some voice in their head telling them what they already figured out minutes ago. And that’s just “Writing Fiction 101.”
If you’ve never written fiction before, the first time you let someone who is close enough to you to tell you the honest truth read your stuff, you’re in for one hell of a reality anvil to fall on your head. You will be called out for any number of things you had no idea was even part of the process. Things like the three-act rule. Plot cohesion. The story arc. Action elements and beats.
You may end up hating characters you thought were your favorite. You may end up loving characters that were tossed in on a whim. And speaking of whims, you will have more whims than you ever have plot points, and you have to beat yourself stupid to keep from including every single one of them – and the ones you DO include, you have to go back and research as thoroughly as you did all of your plot, characters, tech and settings. Then you have to make damn sure your whim didn’t just invalidate something you’ve already written. And INEVITABLY you will end up altering the course of your plot completely.
It’s a lot.
Some things that I’ve learned in the course of all of this have come from reading books on writing fiction. Others from great videos from other writers and directors and storytellers. Still others came from very honest people in my life with experience doing fiction work, who were honest enough and loved me enough to tell me the absolute truth about my writing.
And that’s what this series is going to be about: all the little things I’ve learned along the way that I wish I knew starting out. Now, I am only two volumes into a five-volume serialized novel, which is my first fiction novel. I am hardly any kind of expert. I don’t want anyone to think otherwise, or think that I think otherwise. But, something I’ve always known to be true: there’s no harm in sharing information. And doing something – pass or fail – qualifies anyone to share what they know of the experience, even if their perspective might differ from someone else’s.
It is in that spirit that I am going to write these Book Reports. They will detail lessons I’ve learned, videos I’ve found, books I’ve read, sources I’ve studied (and what I have learned from them), and tricks I’ve developed to get my ass in gear and get going even on the toughest days. I hope it helps, or at the very least, entertains. I’ll post #2 this weekend, and plan to cover basic action lessions I had to learn the very (VERY) hard way.