Here I'm sitting on the floor, reading bemusedly the first novel by be that's published by someone else than me. (In real life this is my fourth novel!) Jumalten tuho / Twilight of the Gods / Gotterdämmerung came out from Pikku-idis just last week, I received my author's copies today by mail. All eight kilos of them.
I'm not yet sure what to think of this. Of course I'm happy as can be, but at the same time I'm feeling a bit empty and sad. After all, this book has been over 20 years in the making. It started with a short story (shares the same title as the book) that was published in 1988 in a Finnish science fiction fanzine called Tähtivaeltaja and continued with the sequel to the story some five or six years later. I couldn't find a publisher for the sequel - it was too long to be published as a short story in the same magazine and it wouldn't've made sense to publish it as a book, so I just kept revising it every time I got some extra time - and inspiration, too! I remember writing some of the most shocking scenes to the rhythm of Godflesh's metallic industrial beat. I don't when exactly, but at some point I dropped every allusion to the original short story. Then, after I'd moved to Turku, I shopped it around. Jari Tammi of Pikku-idis was interested in it already in 2003 or 2004, but then he stopped doing business for some reason or another, but he got back to publishing and my book in 2010 and we made a deal of putting the book out. By that time, I'd rewritten the manuscript, but still it required lots of revisions. I'm a fast writer, but a slow reviser. There's lots of stuff in the book I'd like to rewrite even now.
And I think I'd need some time to recover from the shock! Yet I'm preparing a university course I'm starting next week and I just started translating Lovecraft's "Supernatural Horror in Literature" in Finnish, alongside some other stuff! My son said to me: "You publish too many books, dad", when I showed him Twilight of the Gods and he didn't seem impressed at all. I've gotten used to putting out anthologies and non-fiction books and what not, but this seems more personal - even though the book isn't very personal per se, it's more like an enjoyable romp, not something I've invested my life or personality in. In fact, I'm a bit worried about how that superficiality seems to others.
Here's some more stuff about my book, and for my Finnish readers: do check out my other blog where I'm posting bits from the book that were taken out in the last revisions. There's also a small contest coming, I'm giving three books away!