Sunday afternoon. I just finished up a pseudonymous fetish-comic script that I'm hoping will be the first in a monthly series, illustrated by a really fantastic Puerto Rican cartoonist. Murphy's Law is always a concern, but for right now I'm going to crack a beer and relax.
I ALSO recently finished the first draft of a story for a revisionist Oz anthology I heard about. It's the first time I really produced something using another writer's creation - though this story is a very dark take on the material, nothing at all like Baum's. Up til now, I'd always shrugged off any temptation to write in someone else's world - just 'cause I'm shy. Of course, the Oz books have been in the public domain for a while, and they're so much a part of the shared fantasy vocabulary that it's almost like writing a new version of "Cinderella" (which I also did recently, another pseudonymous project). Even so, this was a real guilty pleasure for me.
Frank Baum was an interesting guy - probably one of the first major American fantasists of the 20th century, yet very much a businessman, kind of like Edgar Rice Burroughs (and it's interesting that fans of one tend to be fans of the other). He was constantly plundering his own books for material for theatrical revues, some of which bombed terribly, others of which were very successful but are now mostly forgotten. People tend to associate him exclusively with his fantasies, but he wrote a number of straightforward boys' & girls' adventure series, proving that even back in the day you couldn't necessarily live on what you wanted to write and nothing else. Wildside Press reprinted one of the girls' books recently, if I'm not mistaken.
And Oz is kind of like Sherlock Holmes; people keep writing new adventures and finding new ways to look at the material. Wicked
is just the tip of the iceberg.
And...you know, it just occurred to me: nobody ever wrote an Oz Cthulhu Mythos story.