On my birthday two years ago, I explaind to ZandraVandra the idea of the lite novel, and how it was a useful format for Zandra’s skillset. Since then she’s released at least three (I don’t keep that close an eye), run multiple kickstarters and had her own work featured in local bookstores.
The other thing that’s happened from Zandra’s lite novels is the promotion of the genre in the area around her. Because it’s not just that she writes lite novels, it’s that people around her are realising they can too.
The Lite Novel is a format I like for a lot of reasons. It’s mixed media, it plays with its own format, and because it preloads a lot of what you’re getting going on, the stories have to decide what they can cut. It’s a good format for if you have one basic part of a story and you want to build on that part. It’s especially good for first writers, because you can build your technical skills by sharing with an audience, and what is going to draw that audience is direct and actual emotional resonance.
Which means that a lot of these stories are about gender feels, being written by people who want to look at and play with that idea space. So I’d just like to point to a small number of these creatives who deserve attention and feedback:
- Ashlyn! Ashlyn helped organise the LiteNovelember jam, the November based Lite Novel jam that I was recommending you try back then
- London Snow! I’d like to highlight them and their work in particular, because there’s a lot of this Lite novel work that focuses on the girl experience of gender feels, and Snow brings an enby perspective.
- Félicie! Another different perspective, Félicie brings along feelings about bodies, helplessness, softness and a kind of horny that you might not even realise is horny (which she insists is PERFECTLY WHOLESOME HORNY).
These are all creatives who want an audience and want feedback, and are mostly playing in the space of stories about feelings with magical realism and a lack of high-stakes tension. If you want to read some stuff about monsters and feelings and not be afraid that the story’s going to leap out with some transphobic nonsense at you, check them out!
There were also two Lite Novel jams this year, and there’s a bunch of free stuff you can check out if you want to read this kind of stuff! Please, give them a little of your time, and a little attention.
If you’re not interested in lite novels, though, you should still check these things out, to see how low the boundaries on ‘finished art’ need to be. You might think your creative project doesn’t have enough ‘stuff’ to qualify as worth sharing, and I want you to check out work like this and realise that no, maybe you can.