The Extrahuman Union

The New Adventures of Sky Ranger

Posted on: May 4, 2011

I really meant for Broken to be a stand-alone book. Honestly.

I’d finished it up, everything was wrapped up in a glorious little package (or so I thought), and while I waded through endless rejection emails I figured, hey, I did manage to write a novel after all, even if it never sees the light of day. That’s enough, right? I could take it the Shelley and Mira route and self-publish it into oblivion, and then be done.

Weirdly, after editing and editing Broken one year, I couldn’t get a specific image out of my mind: Sky Ranger, flying alone, high above a vast and empty desert. Why was he there? What was he doing? So, because I thought it might be fun, I wrote him a little scene. Then, because I wanted some back story, I wrote another one, and another one, and after about fifteen pages I realized I’d started something.

I cheekily titled it “The New Adventures of Sky Ranger.” I like giving works-in-progress silly titles. That’s one of the ways I can not worry about them, and relax enough to trick my brain into actually letting them happen. I have thus far come up with the following chapter and book titles for other works:

The New Adventures of Sky Ranger
Novan Ladies in Terrible Peril

The Long Haul Truckin’ Gals
Jeena and Lauren are Friends
Celeste is the Boss of You
Penny Lives Like A Hermit in the Wooooooods
In Which Everything Sucks
The Bad News Shows Up and Gets Comfy
Things Get Manly

There are others which for all kinds of great, career-saving reasons I’m not reproducing here.

My experience so far is that every book, every story feels different to write, and this one was no exception. Writing Broken was a very raw, emotional experience. This book, Fly into Fire was a lot more fun to do a first draft of. I felt like I was along on a cool adventure with new, interesting people. It exhausted me, it excited me, and along the way I felt like I learned a lot about story structure and pacing.

I also discovered that I’d written An Unintended Sequel. I’m sure there are writers out there who have the entire twelve-book arc for their characters plotted out before writing the first sentence, but I didn’t. I had a general idea of where the universe itself was going, but I didn’t have the first clue what would happen with the characters from Broken once that book was over. Surprise!

Naturally, once I finished Fly into Fire, I was left with was even more story ideas for the same characters in the same universe. Series writing is addictive. Soon I’m going to have to come up with a title for the whole thing. I fully intend to use the word “saga” or, if I’m feeling perky, “cycle:”

The Extrahuman Cycle: a Rip-Roaring Saga of Galactic Girth

Yes! I’d buy all twelve.

A lot of this probably seems pretty trivial, since it’s (mostly) about a book that won’t see the light of day until next January. But what’s happening in my head is that I’m working on a bunch of past, present and future projects all at once. I’m doing promotional stuff for Broken, edits and preparation for Fly into Fire, drafts of two other books, and more. I think this qualifies as a Real WriterTM moment.


4 Responses to "The New Adventures of Sky Ranger"

Okay, I love those chapter names. LOVE THEM.

And any series title totally has to include both “saga” and “cycle” in it.

“The Epic Tale of the Saga Cycle: Book 18” 🙂

Can me and Viv have something like, FOR GREAT JUSTICE or maybe IN SPACE then? (because everything becomes extra awesome with one of these phrases added to the end)

Everything really is better in space!

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