A self-indulgent Author's note inre the 3rd, 20th anniversary edition of The Techno Pagan Octopus Messiah, Coming May 31st, 2018
First, Gratitude. Second,
Here's the F***ing deal, Okay?
IMHO, the book, as was published, is a mess. This is because...
1. The first draft was written in pen (google it), in fifteen run-on notebooks, which got mixed up because
2. I WAS SO HIGH on indian Government Bhang MY EYES WERE BLEEDING.
3. Upon acceptance for publication I was told:
a) to alter certain events for legal reasons
b) it must be less than 288 pages because books are bound in 12 page lots, we're on a limited budget and
c) we don't have much time to edit so how 'bout you do that mostly yourself and on the quick, chop-chop. Therefore:
4. I MADE BAD CHOICES. I WAS 28. WHAT DO YOU WANT?
TPOM is, at heart, a memoir. It was published as a novel to avoid a lawsuit — and in the Hunter S. Thompson spirit of "fiction being the truest form of journalism." Since then, I have learned that no-one owns the rights to your life story and anyone can sue you for any reason at any time.
WHICH IS WHY...
Over the last two years, I've been running a comb through TPOM: elaborating what was glossed-over, condensing what was repetitive and hewing things closer to the truth — while still not getting sued or writing outright fiction. To that end I have reinstated events from Varanasi, a favorite poem involving rocks, deeper conversations with Jimi Baba (a bonafide Hindu holy man?), and a potentially redemptive penultimate scene which somehow ended up on the cutting room floor.
Given all that I still stand by the first editions. They remain true to what I thought was best at the time and besides: TPOM was the what brought my beautiful wife and I together after she contacted me to replace a mutual friend's signed copy which she'd accidentally dropped off a canoe in southwest Thailand precipitating an 18-month long e-mail correspondence (no voice or photos) which culminated in us getting married in 2004 by a Sakalavan crocodile shaman in Morondava, Madagascar.
In short: the upcoming digital, paperback and soon to be audio editions will be a better telling of this whole ridiculous story.And I truly hope you do enjoy it.NAMASTE (literal Sanskrit translation: not me, you),Ian
(There are people in this world who make everything worth it. Mrs. Cathy Winn is one of them)