I'm writing a book.
See, a funny thing happened several weeks ago. I was in the local public library and saw a copy of "Fugitives", one of the "Escape from Furnace" young adult books by Alexander Gordon Smith. I didn't know anything about them...I just saw the cover, thought the premise was interesting and took it home for a look.
Now, I'm fan of 1930's pulp fiction, and I know it when I see it. This stuff read like that...fast action, heaps of trouble, and the main character has to do something about it.
What WAS new was that it was written from a teen's perspective. I'm not a teen by any means, but I enjoyed the character and the story enough to keep the pages flying by. Then, I had a realization. Well, two of them, really.
- Ghost Zero IS a Young Adult novel.
- I was pretty sure I could write it.
One of the really frustrating things about turning out Ghost Zero in comic form is that it takes so...freaking...long to tell a story. Honestly, it would take me a year to complete a 32-page comic book. A whole year.
If I wrote a novel, I could knock out a rough draft in a couple of months, polish and revise the thing in a few more and have it ready for publishing in maybe 3-6 months. A whole novel of 50,000 words of GZ, while keeping my day job. Win.
So, I pulled out my Ghost Zero moleskine (Yeah, I have one of those) and started jotting down ideas, mapping characters, and shaping plots. I came up with a novel that tells the Ghost Zero origin story. I'm calling it Ghost Zero: Spookshow. I started writing it last week and am roughly 7500 words in. I've got a small group of "Beta-Readers" who I lovingly call "Grave Digger Local#66" who are looking over the bleedingly-raw words and giving me reality checks.
|Grave Diggers. Gotta love these guys.|
So far, it's been a hell of a ride.
One of the things I realized quickly is how much more I had to know about....EVERYTHING...when I was writing the novel than when I wrote the comic. It's actually been really cool to come up with back-stories for all of the characters...I mean, I've had plenty of thoughts about them, but writing a novel means you have to have them DOWN.
It's also an incredibly intense and exhaustive experience. I've lost sleep because I've been so excited and involved in the story.
It's like your imaginary friend comes over to stay for a month. It's a little weird.
But, it's fun, too. It's great to have such awesome things to think about, and to push such depth into a world I've been running around in since 2007. My task now is to cross the 50,000-word finish line, and I'm pretty sure it won't be pretty. That's okay...pretty will come later.
So, here we go. I'll be putting out a general call soon for more Grave Diggers, so if you'd like to be in on reading the novel and giving feedback, keep an eye out.