by Shelt Garner
As I’ve said before, every so often, I have something of a reset with the development of these novels I’m working on. Something clicks in my mind and I see how to make them much, much better. And the latest example of this is I have come to see a way to show something about a very important character in the series.
The overall theme of these five novels is the value of one person’s life and how one person can influence the lives of others — even in death. This theme developed as I struggled to write what are now the last two novels in this project. It occurred to me that I had a huge backstory in my mind and that I could write at least two 100,000 word novels about what lead up to the strange little town I came up with. Ultimately, those two novels became three and here we are — I have five novels to develop and write.
But the clock is ticking. I need to stop fucking around and get these novels knocked out so I can start to query them. I like how overwhelming all of this is. That was the point of this all when I started this project as an homage to Stieg Larsson. It was originally meant to be an allegory about the Trump Era…then Trump was too stupid and too lazy to steal the 2020 election and then I saw Mare of Easttown and everything change.
So, now, I have five novels to work on. I’m giving myself no more than about two more years. That will mark the 20th anniversary of my first journey to South Korea in 2024. Of course, by that point the Fourth Turning may be in full swing and I’ll have far bigger problems to have to think about — like, say, a Second American Civil War happening in conjunction with World War 3.