2 JUNE 2021 — I never meant to keep such a long break from posting here — thank you to everyone reading this! — but I got incredibly busy and hope to make up for it in time.
Right now happy to announce my first large-scale composition, An Iceland Symphony, Op. 1: A Theatrical Symphony for All Ages, is available as sheet music in both paperback and ebook form.
At the time I’m writing this, very glad to see it’s actually at #1 on Amazon’s list of Hot New Releases in the category of Opera & Classical Songbooks! My first time seeing that #1 New Release banner on one of my books.
This is a large-scale work of 21 sections that calls for musicians of all ages and includes theatrical elements. The sections range widely in style and complexity. It leaves no one out.
Every note and rest has been carefully tested through hundreds of listenings since I first realised in early 2019 I had started writing this. I hope it may one day be performed live in Iceland by Icelandic musicians.
Until then, here is the full sheet music complete with performance instructions for the theatrical elements as well. I understand Kindle Unlimited members can view the ebook for free, but until the Look Inside previews come up for the paperback and ebook, here are the covers and some sample pages.
Ideally this music would be performed by live musicians, and there will be recordings sooner or later. The audio versions I have now are basically helpful demos only, to be shared with close friends, prospective performers, and writers on music, for example.
I continue to work on high-quality renditions of my own, but more on that later. I’ll also talk more about this in the next episode of my podcast. And as mentioned, one day I hope to see a full, live, staged performance of this.
Many thanks to everyone who has supported and encouraged me on my compositional journey.
Even happier with the paperback than I expected to be. I decided to make a sunny summer outing of picking these up from 6 km away. I scooted most of the way, wind in my hair — it was actually super enjoyable. The perfect way to get sun and fresh air yet also remain cool.
I just uploaded podcast episode NX1.1: “Pilot”, which is wholly made up of excerpts from Chapter 1 of this 6-volume book series.
These excerpts are just a small selection from the more than 20,000 words for this chapter. These excerpts may give some sense of the scope and my approach. The episode is up in the places listed below.
I also updated my site a bit to give a better impression of my current activities.
In this 10-minute episode, 2.6: “A Way to Learn, Screenwriting Gym, and Dashing Through”, I talk for the first time almost only about writing and a couple of things I’ve personally found helpful to grow as a writer and produce good work.
I’ve been recording and writing material for the first chapter of the Northern Exposure book series and its associated podcast all this week, an average of something like 5,000 words a day.
This and some planning and preparatory work mean that I should post the first regular podcast episode only next week, after completing work on that first episode of the TV series.
I also ended up burning the midnight oil last night continuing finalising work on An Iceland Symphony, when solutions to remaining matters occurred unexpectedly.
Starting recording and using that as part of my writing has led to a great increase in productivity in terms of finishing material. I’ve been writing all along through these years, but this seems to have been a missing piece that for some reason completed that circuit.
Thank you to everyone interested in that book and podcast series for your patience! It’s important to do this right.
I just posted episode 2.5 of my podcast What Now with Simo. In this episode I outline a course correction I made for the Northern Exposure book series and its associated podcast. In short:
The main focus of my work must be the book and the full-length recordings. These will be several hours long per episode — all of it substantial. These recordings will be the basis of each chapter in the book series.
The NX podcast As Fresh as Northern Exposure will consist of excerpts from these long recordings — in other words, excerpts from the work as it’s being written. I’ll make colourful selections to make for a satisfying and rewarding meal in its own right.
For reasons I discuss in this episode 2.5, the full meal must be left for the books and the full recordings, which my current plan involves releasing as commercial audiobooks at the same time as each volume of the book series.
The words are flowing beautifully and from a good and deep place.