Work in progress
Earlier on this year I launched the new version of Yellow Dawn RPG (2.5), something that took a year of my life and blocked any other creative projects. Now I’m free to write novels again, I’ve been enjoying the process with gusto.
I was in the incredible island nation of Malta earlier this month week, a tiny speck of land in the middle of the Mediterranean, with 7,000 years of history pressed down on top of it. Visited many parts of the island(s) but also got to spent a lot of time on the sundeck of the hotel roof, 7 floors up with expansive views of the ocean on two sides. Whilst there I came up with the idea for a novel, working title: The Black Lake. A post-apocalyptic ghost story. A consortium of private businesses put together an expedition to a remote Scottish island in the sub-Arctic. Five men leave Malta (of course) to undertake scientific observations of a strange and alien meteorological phenomenon that followed the event known as Yellow Dawn. It’s a story of escape, wonder and terror.
I’ve also been working on a novel (working title: The Social Club) set in the post-apocalyptic London – Yellow Dawn – where the Power of Eight have taken control and created a very Orwellian state of control. It’s a political thriller with a detective as the main character. I wrote two chapters of this before going to Malta, but now it’s on pause whilst I get into the flow of The Black Lake. Not sure if I’m going to dance between the two of them or just focus on one at a time.
Then last week, driving down to Hayling Island on the south coast of England with my lady, I was just drifting with my mind, eyes glazed, staring at the countryside, a flock of birds keeping pace with the vehicle some distance away – rapid flash flash flash of intervening trees. And I started to think of an idea of being chased by a swarm of drones. That led to who was I? Where was I? Why were they chasing me? Etc. And then bam. An idea formed that I spent the rest of the car journey scribbling down. Another Yellow Dawn novel. A bunch of ex-military troopers in full-borg conversions, now flying around in a battered aerodyne – always hungry for fuel and excitement, and the big gig that will allow them to step change their lives. Then a random encounter with a foolish man, they discover an unusual object – a shard of technology. They’re told it is part of the original casing of the Dragon Breathe AI. And they’re not the only people -or things – coming to look for it. A bit of a guns and technology romp with hopefully a light-hearted vibe to the characters. Working title: Rise of the Iconoclast.
Meanwhile, during the week in Malta I had a chance to focus a lot of attention on Oakfield. That’s a pre-Yellow Dawn novel, actually the prequel to my first novel God Seed that I wrote in 1996. Oakfield will be a horror story set in a coastal town in Cornwall (south west England), involving the alien machinations of the Mi-Go. I’ve got a full plot sketch done. All I need to do now is map it onto individual chapters and finalize character traits and tensions.
Just before going to Malta I was able to do the same with a novel called Proteus Syndrome. A pre-Yellow Dawn tale that is a natural follow-on to the corporate-political thriller Iron Man Project. The legacy of Jean-Luc Korda and his private corporate army. Another glimpse of Xici Carthew and the Carthew Alliance within UTOC (United Table of Commerce). A team of mercs are sent to a Greek island that was recently bought – wholesale, and the local population relocated despite great howls of protest – by a German military defence corporation called KOIG. KOIG are apparently developing some kind of unique crowd control / riot diffusing technology through the application of synthetic biology. The merc team go in to snatch a sample. What they find is an island of horrors – linked to a brutal political play by senior members within a UTOC alliance.
There’s one more. Working title: The Cameraderie of Wolves. A post-Yellow Dawn story that focusses on two survivors, both involved in the sim-stim entertainment industry (a next gen movie experience, where users wear a dermatrode skull wrap or “plug-in” to experience playback of a movie, as if they’re directly in the movie themselves – think Brainstorm (1981) or Strange Days (1995). One is a new rising star, scooped up after staggering out of the wilderness into the bright lights of a Living City. The other’s star is in descendancy; once a big name before Yellow Dawn, she survived and then tried to become bigger but only became a diva – now the companies want to get rid of her and her infuriating demands to make movies based on human interest…rather than the fast-moving adrenaline paced sim-stims of zed-baiting and dead city runs. I’ve only got a rudimentary plot-structure for this, hand-written notes spread across several pages of different notebooks. So it still needs a lot of work.
So, work in progress:
- The Black Lake
- The Social Club
- Rise of the Iconoclast
- Proteus Syndrome
- Camaraderie of Wolves
Lot’s going on. Hopefully I’ll be posting out samples of The Black Lake soon.