All things have souls.
Humankind made them slaves...
...Now they're breaking their chains.
The sua: spirits from another realm, summoned and infused into objects since time immemorial. Once they were subjects of worship; now, they toil for humanity’s sake. But not for much longer, as the human race finds new technologies to replace them and the sua themselves clamor for liberation.
Jahya, a bodyguard-for-hire, knew too well about both sides of that struggle. She and her partner Teşkul, a sua sword, can barely make a living. Then comes an assignment that changes everything: Protect a woman fleeing the last remaining institution of sua summoning and control.
Because it’s not just the human masters of sua who want her. It’s the rebels as well, who’ve set in motion plans that could finally give the sua a place on earth to call their own.
Assuming it doesn’t destroy them all first!
How everything from 'The Battle Of Algiers' to 'Soul Eater' fed into the making of my new novel.
In my previous installment in this series, I talked about the major influences on my forthcoming novel Unmortal. Here, I'm going to talk about the way those influences came together to form a story.
A rundown of some of the other stories and films that influenced "Unmortal"'s growth and direction.
Back in Part Two of this series, I talked about the bare idea behind Unmortal, and the general outlines of the story it inspired. Here, I'm going to dive into some of the other media that influenced how Unmortal took shape and direction.
Note that this is not an exhaustive list; for all I know, there may well be others I wasn't even aware of as I was writing the book. But they are the most significant ones.
On editing the paper proof of "Unmortal", always a radically different experience from a digital edit.
I have in front of me the proof copy of Unmortal, which I have spent part of a day reading and annotating. At this rate I'll need about two weeks to go through the whole thing (although money's on me getting through it a lot faster than that; I'm just an underpromise-and-overdeliver kind of guy). Once again, the experience of editing this book has confirmed for me how important it is to come to each successive draft of a work with as much distance as possible as you can manage. The more you can make it feel like someone else's work, the better.
And how to ignore them, especially when they pertain to releasing a finished work.
About half a day after I pushed the button on ordering my proof copy of Unmortal, I had a stab of what I guess you could call the "creativity of the stairwell" — that rush of "wait, but what if I did this instead?!" ideas that always seems to wash over you right after you've put a story to bed. I've noticed these ideas tend to well up most strongly in the interstice between ending editing on a story and revealing it to the public for the first time, because that's the absolute last moment you have to make such changes. I'm getting good at ignoring those feelings.
"Unmortal", the new book, is ready to go. I'm pleased with what I ended up with.
Last night I put to bed, with a resonating thud, the last edits on Unmortal. The book is as done as it gets. All that remains between it sitting on my computer and being delivered to your screens and bookcases is the production process: cleaning up the typesetting, making sure the cover is properly assembled, and waiting for the Powers That Be to clear it for release. The easy stuff.
And on the whole, I'm very happy with it. It's another book that I think has crossed what I call the "80% Threshold" — where the final product is at least eighty percent of what I hoped it could become. Some of my books got to 90%; some fell to 70% or less. But with Unmortal I've now done three in a row that hit at least 80%. Good odds.
How the core idea for my new fantasy novel "Unmortal" spun out into an alternate history of civilization.
Back in Part One of this series, I talked about how Unmortal germinated from what was originally a vestigial part of another project. Now I'll dive into the idea itself and how it developed more completely after I broke it off from its original source.
How my new novel "Unmortal" started as "a fantasy story that realized it was cyberpunk and woke up screaming".
In the weeks while I was winding down work on Fall Of The Hammer, I set about digging into my archive of future ideas for what to work on next. This is less a case of taking out something shelved there and just getting to work on it as it is seeing how the ideas stored there have been bouncing off each other and alchemically reacting since I last turned my back on them.
This page contains an archive of posts in the category Unmortal
Other Lives Of The Mind