Daron’s Guitar Chronicles is a web fiction serial that began posting in November 2009 and concluded in January 2020.
What is a web serial? It’s just like a webcomic, but all prose.
Daron’s Guitar Chronicles tells the story of gay guitar-playing prodigy Daron Moondog (né Marks) from about the time he’s eighteen to twenty-four. He arrives at RIMCon (Rhode Island Musical Conservatory) in the mid-1980s, desperate to leave behind a dysfunctional family in New Jersey’s suburbs and discover himself. It’s the age of MTV, AIDS, and punk versus metal, all of which will affect his journey searching for fame, artistic expression, and the courage to seek out the love he needs.
Daron’s Guitar Chronicles is a bildungsroman, which is a fancy word for a novel where the coming of age process is long and gradual.
In among the chapter posts are sometimes “liner notes” with commentary and interesting tidbits on history, pop music, the entertainment biz, and being queer in the public sphere. Most of these listed in the Table of Contents, but we may have missed some. They can be found while reading by hitting “next” at the end of each chapter, as well.
News: March 4, 2010. Daron’s Guitar Chronicles has won the 2010 Rose and Bay Award for crowdfunded fiction!
News: June 17, 2011. The Daron’s Guitar Chronicles volume one ebook hit #2 on the Amazon Kindle store Gay Books bestseller list! (free edition)
News: August 2011. The Volume 2 ebook was in the Top 25 Bestseller List on Amazon.com in the “Coming Out” Books Category (paid edition) for 10 weeks straight! (Update: As of August 2012 it was still in the Top 40!)
News: May 24, 2012. Daron’s Guitar Chronicles has completed a successful Kickstarter campaign for the production and printing of a paperback omnibus of chapters 1-201! (Paperback would ship in December of 2012.)
News: October 8, 2012. Audible.com releases audiobooks of Daron’s Guitar Chronicles volumes 1, 2, and 3.
News: May-July 2013. Daron’s Guitar Chronicles appears on the Amazon “Coming of Age” bestseller list, bouncing between the top 10 and the low 60s.
News: May 9, 2014. Daron’s Guitar Chronicles completes a second successful Kickstarter, to raise the funds for a second volume omnibus paperback. Thanks to stretch goals reached, the campaign also funded the production of individual paperbacks to match the ebook volumes.
News: January 29, 2020. The Daron’s Guitar Chronicles web serial reaches its end! Still to come: a Kickstarter to raise funds to finish the creation of the ebooks and paperbacks not yet done.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR & HOW DGC WAS WRITTEN:
She first began writing about Daron when she was 16 years old, in high school in suburban New Jersey in the early 1980s. Fragments of stories came and went, and Daron figured in several short stories she wrote for classes in college, though never as the central character. It seemed for many years like Daron’s story was being told to her by the characters all around him. It wasn’t until 1992, in graduate school for a masters degree in writing, that she buckled down and started writing from his point of view.
What followed was six years of work, as Cecilia worked on the tale on and off while finishing grad school and founding Circlet Press. It had quickly become clear that the story was not a traditional 80,000 word novel in the same way that a road movie is not a traditional three-act film. The story was more of a bildungsroman. The original final draft was mammoth in size. Several editors and one agent persuaded Cecilia to cut material equal to the size of a whole novel from it, but what was left was still more than twice the size of a commercial fiction novel.
And so the material–much praised by editors (including editors at Little, Brown and Alyson) who nonetheless rejected it as unsalable because of its size and scope–sat on Cecilia’s hard drive for about ten years. Until 2009, when web serialization became a viable reality.
The story was not written as a “period piece” of the late 80s/early 90s–that was when the bulk of it was conceived and written. That’s really how it was, then, before cell phones, before “alternative music” became hip, before there were out gay celebrities.
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