I more or less did it. I reworked all of Apocalypse. The book is now 75,000 words (where before it was about 40,000). It’s as long as the later books of the series and hopefully a lot better written.
That said, it won’t be available for a long time. Compared to Origins and Evolution, which are both longer than the original Apocalypse, the new Apocalypse is substantially longer than both of these books. For that reason I’d feel uncomfortable with releasing it until those two books were reworked as well. I don’t want new readers to be confused about a long first book and shorter second and third books. So until I can find the time to rework those, the reworked Apocalypse is going to stay on the backburner. It’ time to move on to working on the new series.
I’m creating a new world, so I’m probably going to do a lot of outlining first. The first step will be figuring out everything that happens in the four hundred years following the events of The Wasteland Chronicles. It’s a bit ambitious, but I think I can do it. The challenge will be revealing that history in bits and pieces and not all at once in the actual book, that way the story has room to breathe and move. And I still have to figure out the story…I have a main character in mind, but I still need to give her an objective.
Yes, it is a she, at least for now. What I do know about her (if I’m to use her as a main character) that she is going to be a descendent of Alex and Anna – which, four hundred years in the future, isn’t too hard to imagine. The main conflict of the book is going to be the fact that the Radaskim are coming back – except the world has forgotten – which also isn’t too hard to imagine.
Trying to imagine such a world will be incredibly difficult. How much technology would still be useable around that time? How much would be rediscovered, if anything at all? What happened in the years after with Augustus, the Empire, the Reapers, and everyone else?
Those really aren’t easy questions to answer, and it’s what I’m going to be trying to figure out. As of right now, I’m imagining the main character will be set on a quest to rediscover the past – the real past – and not the mythological version of it that’s believed by most people at large.
Creating an entire world is one of my favorite things to do with writing. I really liked developing the idea of the Wasteland with its cities, its factions, and the alien virus and invaders. There will still be all of that stuff, but the world will be a lot different in the 2400’s, in a time where humanity will have lived side by side with the Elekai going on five centuries.
I have to say that there is a lot of potential for awesomeness and I may well be writing 20,000 words of pure background information that I can work with. From that, I’ll probably get story ideas – and the story is always the hardest part to get right, and it also happens to be the most important part.
It’s been about a month since Xenofall came out. Reworking Apocalypse took a bit longer than I’d planned, but I was also rewriting pretty much everything. Now, it’s on to the thing you guys are really excited about. I’m pretty excited as well to see how things turned out. I’m flying mostly blind here, but I’m ready to see what’s in this world and the stories that are waiting to be told.
On a side note, while reworking Apocalypse, I thought about how cool it would be to do backstories for some of the characters. Makara might be interesting to do, because her voice was one that spoke to me strongly as I wrote the books. Don’t hold me to that, though, because the main priority will be the new series. What excites me about The Wasteland Chronicles is that there’s so much potential for stories – past, present, and future, with any of the characters, really.
Then again, eventually I’m going to want to move on, but even if I get to that point, I’ll have to come back to the Wasteland every now and then.
Well those are my ramblings of the moment. Time to go back to reading me some Rothfuss.