Tuesday, August 7, 2012

My First eBook Project - Perspectives: The Emerald Event

Geek to Author is all about the journey of an IT Security expert into fiction writing. Up to this point I have been working on the craft of writing by working on short stories. Very few I have released to the public, I will be changing that. Ultimately the goal is to write a novel or two or ten. To make that goal and do it the way I want to I need to start small and work up, getting better at each step.

In the spirit of chronicling the journey I will do something a little different and detail out my project before I start working on it. The idea for this project is create a hybrid of a collection of short stories and a full length novel. I am calling this project and potential ongoing series Perspectives. This will not be episodic stories and it's not a random collection of short stories rather an interconnected collection of view points around a central theme.

A full length novel focuses on a set of characters that all flow, for the most part, from start to the end. Throughout that story other sub-characters and sub-plots will be encountered but their branches have to be trimmed and ended quickly as to not take away from the core of the novel. In a short story you have the restriction of length to not allow for deep development of the character's emotional states, relationships, or extensive backgrounds. Perspectives will attempt to merge the two in a unique and fun way where the reader will get the breadth of a large novel subject but in small slices.

The other aspect that I want Perspectives to address is how people read books today. Whether you like it or not, people are not sitting around by the fireplace consuming large novels in mass quantity anymore. Occasionally you get the viral explosions like 50 Shades of Gray, Hunger Games, Harry Potter, but those are far and few between. I don't think in this age of information people truly read enough anymore. One reason is the fast and furious lifestyle we have in our society and people are put off and discouraged to not read because of the effort and time involved. Perspectives is designed to change that. Even though Perspectives will have a novel's worth of subject matter and content, the actual stories are broken up into individual stories that are not interconnected. Meaning that you can read any story, at any time, in any order... except the last one (I'll explain in a second.) Each story's length will be less than 75 pages on purpose to allow the story to be read, consumed and enjoyed in a short time. The only connection between the stories will be a much larger, encompassing event and each story is a unique perspective that normally would never be addressed in a flowing novel.

Then if you are a commuter and only can read for that 30 to 60 minutes a day, 20 minutes in bed before you go to sleep, this is the majority of reader's style now. A 500 page novel is hard to consume and keep the details in your head over the several weeks it may take for you to consume it. The feeling, the flow, and the reader's connection to the book is lost. Wouldn't be much easier to be able to get through 50 page story, walk away with one perspective point instead of trying to keep 30 characters straight as well as all the interconnected plot points? I think so.

The first is tentatively called  Perspectives: The Emerald Event. Every situation and details discovered are slightly different depending on your perspective.  

Here is the tentative titles of Perspectives: The Emerald Event stories, there may be another or two added depending how long these are. The goal is to have a standard 400-600 pages, novel length.
  • 60 Minutes
  • Business Class
  • Streaks To The Heavens
  • Family Values
  • City Dwellers
  • Preppers
  • Safari

The last nugget and fun part to Perspectives is that each story has a 'clue' or 'piece of the puzzle' in them. Because it's designed for quick reading enjoyment, the reader only needs to remember the piece instead of a stream of character names, places, details that can be easily lost over time. This also allows the stories to stand on their own and can be read in any order. However, the last story in Perspectives will be the climax that will bring all the pieces together and wrap up the story, much like a novel's final chapters.

For example, let's say there is an attack on the United States. One perspective may be from downtown of a city when the sirens blare. What would they see? How would they react? What would the attack look like? Are bombs dropping or is it a troop invasion? Another perspective could be from a missile silo complex, you might learn about who or where to send the missiles. One perspective could be from 40,000 in a plane flying above the country seeing what's happening below. What would they do, where would they go, what else is in the sky with them? The climax story could be in the Situation Room of the White House detailing out exactly what's going on, you may assume as a reader that it's World War 3 with the Russians or China, but what if something else was going on that is completely aligned with the pieces of the puzzle but the final picture is nothing what you thought. That's Perspectives.

I thought about releasing the stories as I complete them but have decided to keep them all together so it will be  a while before I get all these written and ready for released in eBook format that I will self publish through Amazon's Publishing Service. This is the first real production of Geek To Author and I am really excited about it. I have no idea if this will work but I think it's a unique idea specifically targeted for today's style of readers. The subject matter may not be for everyone, but if it works Perspectives can be applied to any situation.


Time to turn the page.

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