ADMIT ONE LITERARY THEME PARK

For those of you who don’t know me personally or haven’t figured this out yet, yes, I am a Disney freak. Specifically, a Disney Park freak. Out of that came Admit One Literary Theme Park: E-Ticket Short Fiction for Grown-Up Disney Fans (since the site is no longer active but was costing me $100/change a year through Lunarpages, I’ve taken it offline).

In 2007, I set about pursuing an MFA in Creative Writing from Goddard College in Plainfield, Vermont. It was two long years of work that, according to program requirements, needed to culminate in a novel, poetry chapbook, or short story collection of publishable quality. Of course, I chose the short story collection, and was excited to pursue an idea I’d had since an upsetting family quarrel in Disney’s Magic Kingdom when I was a teen–short stories set in Disney Parks.

I set to work. In 2006, I had become a huge fan of Ricky Brigante’s Inside the Magic podcast, as it soothed the savage beast in between Disney trips. I had met so many interesting fans on the forums (now the whole thing is more social-media based) that I was soon inspired to do something a little different: pull together a Disney-Park-Set short story and send it out, once a month, to a list of subscribers whom I knew were also Disney Park fans. We sent out our first issue in April of 2008 and sent out our final issue in January of 2009.

So what happened?

Well, nothing. Nothing went wrong, nobody got tired or sick of it. It’s just been, to say the very list, an interesting ride.

Fine artist and book alterer Melissa Duckworth, of Pandora Ink Books, was one of our very first subscribers. Late in 2008, she approached me with the idea of publishing a selection of the Admit One tales that dealt with ghosts as Admit One: Tales of Haunted Disney World in the Spring of 2010. The interior was to be illustrated, and each book would be hand-altered before shipping. To give unfamiliar readers a taste, a few of the stories in the collection (the rest would be exclusive to the book) were going to be available on the web.

Since, at that time, my thesis was still pretty general–Disney-Park-set short stories–I seized upon her suggestion of ghost tales, because most of what I’d written were ghost stories in one way or another (which was, actually, the initial idea when I was a teen–I talk a great deal about that in my radio interviews; you can listen to any of those directly from this website, just click and play, here).

My entire thesis needed stories removed and revision, revision, revision. I was graduating in July 2009. With seven months to go, I had too much work to do and had to drop PDF publication on Admit One.

The thesis was complete. I graduated and it was submitted to Goddard as Skeletons in the Swimmin’ Hole.

In August of 2009, there was talk about making this into a regular, submissions-taking magazine, but that was a huge time investment that I simply wasn’t ready for. In September, 2009, A freelance writer in Miami, Lourdes G, found us and made us a ’NetPick on her very interesting and eclectic blog, Writer * Geek * Makeup Freak: the personal blog and homepage of writer Lourdes G. I talk about everything from writing to makeup and comics. Lourdes and I were in touch, and she believed there was a market for such a mag and would have loved to see it burgeon into something of that sort.  [Note–as of July 2011, this blog and page are no longer available, so I have removed the link.]

Right around that same time, my friend Rob Mayette was interested in getting together a literary magazine as well, and he approached me to become his partner. Of course, I said yes. That became Read Short Fiction, where I am still co-editor.

In the wake of that project, Admit One and hopes of reviving it at that time ended. I just didn’t have the time–and the landscape of publishing and social media had drastically changed. There was more exciting stuff out there than ever before, to learn, to grow, to do. So, it got shelved.

Then, at the end of September, 2010, Skeletons in the Swimmin’ Hole–Tales from Haunted Disney World–became reality as an in-print book. It’s been doing so well–and the electronic versions aren’t even out there yet–that the Admit One project has now transformed into Haunted Disney Tales. Yes, it will be a series. I had planned my next collection for late 2012, but now, but with so many other projects happening now and on the horizon, I don’t know when I’ll be getting to book 2 (although people have asked!).

Back Issues of the original Admit One Literary Theme Park are available; just hit me up through my Contact Page. Here’s a list and the availability status:

AO #1, April 2008: It’s a Good Life

Available

AO #2, May 2008: Romancing the Goat

Not Available

AO #3, July 2008: Monorail Clear

Available

AO #4, August 2008: All This Furniture and Nowhere to Sit

Not Available

AO #5, September 2008: You Were There (A Magical Journey done in the style of the old Choose Your Own Adventures!)

As of September 2013, available as a chapbook.

AO #6, October 2008: Miss Reyna Gets Her Comeuppance on Flash Mountain

Not Available

AO #7, November 2008: Believe Me, You Do Not Want to Live in that House

Available

AO #8, December 2008: Doing Blue

Not Available

AO #9, January 2009: Charlotte’s Family Tree

Not Available

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