What is an Experimental Writer?

experimental Lily Neon Vagabond scaled

In my search to find a home for The Ash Garden (in case you wondered what I’ve been doing besides reading and reviewing dark fiction), I’ve had to accept that publishers will “get” what I’m offering by calling myself an experimental writer.

But, here’s the thing, I don’t like it.

In publishing terms, experimental just means using a variety of different elements in order to retell a story, Modern retelling of Alice in Wonderland as dark satire, for example. (Since there’s a lot of examples of that).

I didn’t rewrite anything. I wrote a 40, 000 word novella that I like to call the most fucked up story written. And I hope to write stories that are even more fucked up. That’s just how I roll.

While it’s true I use a number of different subjects in my fiction writing as references, ranging from Eastern philosophies to occultism to murder ballads. Truth be told, it’s only because I can.

Also, I kinda hate labels. No, correction, I hate labels.

In music, experimental tends to be categorized as industrial (not a bad thing), but I would never put myself on the same level as, say, The Swans, Skinny Puppy, or even Nine Inch Nails. I’m a fiction writer. I make up stories. I can’t write music to save my life. I can’t even sing in the shower.

Don’t you find the term “experimental writer” confusing? I know I do. It sounds, to me, like it reeks of narcissism. I can’t work with that.

I enjoy the freedom of independence (therefore I’m independent author, etc), but how in hell can a writer self-promote themselves as experimental? Seriously. It’s a death wish, considering the sheer number of trolls on social media these days.

Well, and I say this with a resigned sigh, I just hope the one publisher who says yes (eventually, it’s going to be a while yet) is open to working with me. And, perhaps, dare I say it, experimental promotions.

Views: 2