Composing Classics In Our Time
I have written five novels, SICILIANA, DROVER, PRINCE, PIETAS, and BLOODHOUND. I have also written a pair of novellas, FIRMAMENT and ENTANGLEMENT. I am drafting my sixth and seventh novels, SEDITION and RAGNAROK.
SICILIANA is set in Sciacca, Sicily during one week in October 1909. Don Sciarpa sells his soul to devil to become Don. Bad deal, so he tries to reclaim his soul. While still in his depravity, he tries to get his brother-in-law, Snodatu, to “sell his soul” by going in on a bad deal with the Don. He does, but in a way that betrays Don Sciarpa, who swears revenge. They both fall into the spider web of the real villain, Archebishop Arcollo. Both Don Sciarpa and Snodatu seek and find redemption by aiding the other and overcoming the Archebishop. (http://www.amazon.com/Siciliana-neal-abbott/dp/1500757330/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1409589660&sr=1-3)
DROVER is set in Wetherford, Texas from 1856-1858. Ben Bourland is a cattle drover who comes off the trail and wants to settle down. He wants a big ranch and a big family. He thinks his dreams are well on their way when he meets Amanda Jones. Winning over her parents, Aldridge and Elvira, is tougher than impressing young Amanda. The rub is that the Jones’ are Christian folk and Ben is still a bit rough. He must overcome himself and become a good Christian gentleman if he is to marry Amanda. When his dreams of a large ranch and large family run against his newly formed Christian ideals, he must decide which will win out – his dreams or his hope. (currently out of print)
PRINCE is set in Los Angeles in late winter of 2001. Charlie Castile is in love with Lizzie Le Fleur, and she with him. They dated all through high school. Charlie’s father, Philip, comes by the means of shutting down her family business. He will relent if she marries him, which she does, sacrificing her happiness for the well being of the near 1,000 employees, not to mention her parents. As Charlie struggles with his love for his step-mom, he learns of a dairy Philip is also threatening to close. This would lead to the death of this small town, and Charlie feels compelled to help them. Still he feels for Lizzie, and he must face the same decision she did – will he seek the love that makes him happy or will he act out of a selfless love for others by his own sacrifice? (http://www.amazon.com/Prince-post-modern-tragedy-neal-abbott/dp/1481282778/ref=la_B009T36LWK_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1412034173&sr=1-2)
PIETAS is my most ambitious attempt at literature yet. it is a double-sequel. It follows the continuing adventures of Darl Bundren and Benjy Compson, both characters of William Faulkner. It details the quest for family and belonging in depression-era Mississippi. If you’ve read Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying and The Sound and the Fury, then you are familiar with Darl and Benjy. While there is nothing better than family, we need to make room for those who love us and accept us. (http://www.amazon.com/Pietas-neal-abbott/dp/1501060880/ref=sr_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1419797894&sr=1-4)
BLOODHOUND is the story of an Oklahoma lawman during the Great Depression. Oscar Morgan is the City Marshall of Blanchard, a small town a bit south of Oklahoma City. He captures kidnappers and bootleggers, but he became famous by tracking a spree killer. His most personal case involved a bank robber, but despite all of his labors, his greatest conflict with himself. (http://www.amazon.com/Bloodhound-neal-abbott/dp/150608964X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1430933263&sr=1-1)
FIRMAMENT covers a century in several places, New York, Ireland, Spain, and Russia. The main story takes place in Abilene, Texas in our time. Jack Johnson is mentored by an elderly gentleman he refers to as the Old Timer. Jack is in need to learn such lessons as the value of art, the role of providence, and the role of love and strife in a life. Mostly he needs to figure out how to grow up. The Old Timer does his best to teach these things to Jack, but will he learn while he has time? (http://www.amazon.com/Firmament-neal-abbott/dp/149960341X)
ENTANGLEMENT is my third novel set during the depression, but it’s different. Rex Monday is not poor at all. He is a part of the idle rich who spends all of his time gambling and chasing women. This story is strongly based on the 19th century Russian literature character type known as the Superfluous Man. Rex ruins the live of people around him, but in turn his choices leave him in shambles.
I have four works of non-fiction completed, as well. They are THE GATSBY READER, THE CREATIVE WRITING MIND, THINK LIKE A WRITER, and MY PLANS FOR WORLD DOMINATION, AND HOW THEY CAN BECOME YOUR PLANS, TOO. Down the road I plan to write THE FINE ART OF CREATIVE WRITING, TOWARDS AN ADVANCED AESTHETIC, and SOME KIND OF MONSTER.
How can Nick get so many things wrong? I suggest he is dishonest and not a reliable narrator. Not only does Fitzgerald let us know this, but he drops breadcrumbs behind Nick’s back for us to follow. You will be shocked where it leads! Also, Fitzgerald not only wrote one of the finest American novels ever, but he layers his story with a failed Grail quest. Find out what you never knew in my book about THE GATSBY READER.
All Creative Writing begins in the mind long before it ends up coming out through the fingertips. And I mean a lot more than thinking of an interesting story being carried out by interesting characters. The disposition the author has toward the craft of writing as well as to himself as a writer has everything to do with the productivity of that writer. My book THE CREATIVE WRITING MIND helps authors re-engineer their attitude to be the best author possible.
Creative Writing begins in the mind before it trickles down into the fingertips. Before one may perform the task of a great author, he must have the right attitude. What this mindet is and how to obtain it can be found in HOW TO THINK LIKE A WRITER.
So, do you want to take over the world? Do you want to write that book that everyone will be talking about? You may yet do it. MY PLANS FOR WORLD DOMINATION is a series of motivational and tail-kicking article meant to help you stay serious, stay focused, and stay encouraged to accomplish whatever it is your heart desires.
Does fine art play a role in society? Can art actually help make us better people? Rolling together the best of Aristotle with Burke, Goethe, and Schiller, I am trying to develop my own template for an ADVANCED AESTHETIC.
And keeping with the artistic theme, and applying it to composition, THE FINE ART OF CREATIVE WRITING helps authors develop their skills in utilizing those elements of a story that elevate it beyond pop-art into a wonderful creation that can be called fine art. Think of Beethoven or Rembrandt as authors.
How many times have you read a story about vampires, zombies, or ghosts? How many times have you read of these without knowing they are there? Not all monsters have fur and fangs. Sometimes they are the villains in our stories, and sometimes they are our heroes. The psychology of monsters in literature is explored in SOME KIND OF MONSTER.
And finally, I have a children’s book out there, too. it’s called MY FAVORITE CLOUD. This my first, and so far only, attempt at children’s literature. In my book, My Favorite Cloud, I develop two of the most fundamental qualities that should be cultivated in youth: good manners and a creative imagination. Our young heroin Kendall has an adventure with her new friend Dexter. He shows her worlds she could only dream of before. (http://www.amazon.com/My-Favorite-Cloud-neal-abbott/dp/1522713859?ie=UTF8&qid=1465314050&ref_=sr_1_4&s=books&sr=1-4)
If anyone has any questions for me, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will promptly respond.