Jean Lorrah

As of this writing (August 10, 1978), the first draft of FIRST CHANNEL is finished. I've just begun my cut-and-polish job, and will be giving the manuscript to Jacqueline at Iguanacon, leaving the last run through and typing of the final copy to her.

A funny thing happened on the way to the end of the book: we never got there, As you know, FIRST CHANNEL was intended to be the complete story of Rimon Farris's life, ending with his death. However, we finally woke up last Spring to the fact that Rimon's problems were solved when he learns to channel--so that is where the book now ends. It's a happy, hopeful, upbeat ending--although knowledgeable Sime/Gen fen will be able to predict some of the problems Rimon and his friends will face in applying what they have discovered. Some of you may object that the ending is unfair to the reader, for that very reason. However, it is not unfair for two reasons.

First, at the point at which FIRST CHANNEL ends, Rimon's life is not over, but his story is. The problem that has plagued him since his changeover has been solved; he has gained control of his peculiar physiology, has learned to accept responsibility, and has found a way to prevent other Simes from killing. To carry the story further would be like going beyond the fairy tale ending, "and they lived happily ever after." Of course nobody ever does live happily ever after, but we all accept ending a story when it is over. In the case of FIRST CHANNEL, even the reader who has read none of the other Sime/Gen books will find plenty of hints to indicate that the future will not be completely rosy.

The second reason for ending FIRST CHANNEL at this point is that we discovered that the rest of the story is not Rimon's; it belongs to his son, Zeth Farris. Rimon was the first Sime to discover how to channel. Zeth is the first non-junct Farris channel. Zeth is also the channel who comes up with the concept of Householdings. That is what his story is about--how he comes to the conclusion that the dreams of his father and Abel Veritt to disjunct all Simes are not going to work, and how he builds a new dream--one that does work, for centuries, as we see in HOUSE OF ZEOR.

About that title--SON OF FIRST CHANNEL is a joke, of course. When we get around to submitting the outline and a couple of chapters to see if we can get a contract (please--let us finish the final cut-and-polish of FIRST CHANNEL first!), if we haven't thought up something better we'll probably use the working title of HOUSEHOLDING RIOR.

Oh, yes--we can't call it SECOND CHANNEL (or CHANNEL TWO), because there are actually three channels in FIRST CHANNEL--it's just that none of them know what they can do with their talents until Rimon makes the Big Discovery. Anyway, all you Sime/Gen fen are going to get two books--not exactly for the price of one, of course, but for the basic brainstorming of one. This is a short progress report because I've got to get back to taking Kadi out of Rimon (I'd tell you about how we took Rimon out of Kadi, but this is a G-rated zine). CZ's sister zine, AMBROV ZEOR, will probably be printing some of the parts we're cutting from FCh, after it's published, of course. The headaches right now are how to cut from 170,000 words down to 100,000 without losing the story. Please pass the fosebine.

((At this time, in October, Jacqueline has nearly finished retyping the cut-down version, and they expect to turn it in to Doubleday in January.))

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