New Beginnings

2016 has been a year of reflection for me, as I mentioned in my last post to finish out my series, but I wanted to talk more about that reflection and what it means for me and readers going forward.

This year I’ve had a good deal of ups and downs. I had some success with my short stories, and a good deal of praise for them. However, as I mentioned in my series, those stories come from a dark flame that is not always active. This led me to question what role in writing I should focus on.

I enjoy Fantasy, but it is not the genre I am in love with. When I examine my interests outside of writing I find that they almost always coincide with Science, Science Fiction, Futuristic Ideas, and (of course) time travel. So, why then would I become a purely Fantasy writer?

I wondered the same thing, even though that is what I was claiming to do. I think it is because I spent a great majority of my teenage and young adult years playing Dungeons and Dragons, reading the associated novels, and living for Fantasy movies and games. Somewhere along the way I matured. I was no longer fleeing from what was in front of me, which meant (inevitably) that the past was not as appealing.

I wrote Kodiak and Atlas as a means to emulate my favorite science fiction shows, but in neither of those novels did I quite capture the essence. There were tributes and certainly some themes, but the setting was not robust.

I am a creator. I want to create worlds that carry fantastic elements far and wide. Sinister bad guys and anti-heroes. My favorite Science Fiction games are the Mass Effect series by Bioware. In thinking about that, I began to realize what was missing from my Infinity Verge series. It wasn’t plot, or story. It was setting.

The Mass Effect universe is built on the predication that humanity is one of many alien species fighting for survival. It’s an excellent premise, and the game tells a story worthy of a novel (however horrible the series ending was).

I remember my previous attempts to emulate a story though. I don’t want to repeat mistakes that I know I have learned from. So, long story short (hey, I’m a novelist okay?), I am going to keep writing Fantasy short stories, because they help me to release darkness and they provide a steady stream of writing.

However, I am refocusing my Science Fiction efforts. I have begun creating a setting that is massive. I am calling it REACH. Why REACH? Well, because I am reaching for the stars with this one. I am building an entire campaign setting (so that when and if I decide, I can run a Dungeons and Dragons type game with it). I am also writing two different stories in the REACH universe right now. Finally, I am also going to begin working on a Wiki which I will host on my djmorandauthor.com site.

This next year, I wouldn’t expect too much in the way of Science Fiction from me, other than updates regarding the setting and where I am at. I will still publish short stories in my Legends of Vandor setting (Fantasy) every month from February to November, with an e-book and print Anthology in December. For now, let me leave you with the latest images I have created for REACH.

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These are the newest images, below you will find the other images I have created for this setting. Each image represents an organization or corporation in REACH, which is a Science Fiction future space faring setting. The Corporations control our solar system, but an alien race looms at the edge of the galaxy that threatens to thrust humanity into a new era.

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I’m pretty excited about this setting as you might be able to tell. I’m working on a history document of all the corporations and organizations, which I’ll incorporate into the game setting as well. I’m looking forward to 2017 and to my continued growth as a writer. Until next time folks.

Your Friendly Neighborhood Author,

DJ Morand