I wanted to take a minute, and explain some things about my upcoming novel. First, I am excited to share it with you. I really really want to hear people’s reactions to it when they read it. I want to know how you feel and what you think as you go through the story.
Second, this story is several years in the making. I even had Michelle draw up different covers over the last few years for the different drafts and versions.
The first time I sat down to write what would eventually become And So We Simply Survive I was suppose to be getting ready for my Junior Prom. I recall typing the introduction to the original draft just before jumping in the shower. At the time, I had no idea what I was writing. I didn’t know what the draft would morph into, nor did I know how radically it would change.
I finished the very first draft sometime in high school. My family enjoyed it and told me to keep refining it. I promptly ignored their advice and pushed it aside and forgot about it. Years later, I started thinking about resurrecting the basic idea of the story. I did. I filled notebooks with pieces of ideas as I tried to narrow down what story I wanted to tell.
Three years ago today I started working on what I thought would be the draft. I was wrong. I spent over a year writing, rewriting and plotting out a story that I would eventually scrap. This draft was violent, action packed and very very fluid. I tried to tell a big story with numerous moving parts.
And I didn’t like any of it. I loved the story, but I hated how big it was. I wanted And So We Simply Survive to be this small, intimate story that hit the reader hard. I didn’t need gunfire and explosions to do that. I didn’t need death or gore. I needed something grounded and tangible. So, I pried those parts away from the fluff and pieced together the current draft.
This version is my favorite. It carries the tone I originally wanted. The world is very realistic, and familiar. There are countless personal touches and experiences littered throughout the tale. I think this helps scale the story back, and it integrates me and my thoughts into the story. However, the most important thing about this draft is that it is simple.
This story doesn’t follow a single individual or a group, rather each chapter follows a new character. All of the characters are endeavoring to challenge their peers. In short, they are trying to change the world. Some are battling powers they see as evil, while others are striking out against new opponents they feel are sabotaging their destiny.
One theme in the story is free will. When we make a purchase, or apply for a job, are we doing so of our own free will, or is some translucent force urging us to take these actions? Many of the characters in the story would argue there is no free will in a post-industrial capitalist society.
So far, this is the official synopsis. I am fairly certain this won’t change, however, it is still a draft.
And So We Simply Survive is a window into a world, much like our own. There are people, cities, nations, and dreams. The people work, sleep and eat, just like we do. The cities ebb and sway, grow and shrink. The world is shaded with the same sins of our world. Greed and neglect are rampant in some places, while love and joy are common in other places. The world has passed the industrial stages of development, and is wading further into a service oriented economy. This is a classic utopia for many, and a sewage pit for others.
The characters of this tale are all victims. The notion of free-will has very much evaporated from the world. Many of people cling to this idea, harboring positive notions of the future when there are none. The characters of this story are no exception. They are all damaged by their world.
In this unending state of survival, some attempt to rebel. They erect a new city, staging an occupation. However, their forces are devoted to a peaceful transition, while their adversaries are committed to shaping the world as they see fit. After this gentlemen’s coup fails, the characters suffer the consequences of their actions. Lives are lost, and blood is spilled in a world where people may no longer dream, nor hope; they may only survive.