Summer Brain and the Ladies of Space

   After releasing my last book, I decided to give my brain the summer off. You see, as I've mentioned before, hot weather is incompatible with my brain. There was no way that I was going to be able to do justice to the all important middle book of the series, so I set the town of Blackbird aside and decided to see what else I might work on.
   Originally, I'd planned to write a cute little memoir about all the crazy and unexplainable things I've seen in my life, but I decided I wasn't quite ready for that. I also had a young adult fantasy story about an odd young girl who mysteriously appears in a small southern town right around the same time that a bunch of suspicious fires are started. I decided that while I had some beautiful scenes worked out, I didn't really have enough of a plot to create a compelling story... Yet. So my thoughts drifted back to Princess Robot Commander. Rather, the story that I decided needed a different name.
   For a while, I worked on this, rewriting the first six chapters, changing from first to third person narrative, and deciding if this would indeed end up a trilogy. And then I was distracted. I found a small flash piece I had written last year and decided that I would turn it into something bigger.
   What I now have on my hands is two very different leading ladies vying for my attention now that I really have to get back to the Rise of the Discordant series. I'm not quite ready to put either of them away, but if I want to finish the series by next Halloween, I've got to buckle down. So what I've decided is that I won't put them away entirely. I typically have to step away from the Discordant series when I'm hitting major roadblocks, so they can provide my distractions.
   However, when I say these ladies are different, I mean it. Not that I'm exactly a cookie cutter author. I relish the ability to write in whatever the hell genre I want. That being said, I'd like to give each of my girls a chance to present themselves. Below is a description of each character and what their story is about. I'd like to know your thoughts. Which one intrigues you more? Which story do you think I absolutely must write first? Why? Without further ado....

Ellie Whitmore
   Ellie is your average college student. Sort of. She's the daughter of a famous supermodel and her stepfather is a big deal Hollywood director. Oh, and she's a bit of a giant at six feet four inches. And she has this terrible skin condition that cause white dots to form all over her body in geometric patterns. Especially on her face. Oh, and her full name is El'iadrylline Kyroibi Whitmore. Okay, so there's nothing average about Ellie at all, but hey, lots of humans are a little different, right?
   About that. See,  although she was born on Earth, Ellie is not exactly human. She's not at all human. She's the daughter of a princess from another planet in the Sagittarius arm who went into hiding when her husband was assassinated. But before his death, he hid a very important key in the genetic imprint that would become Ellie. Now, the same madman who killed her father is after her, having discovered that she is the key that could bring him ultimate power over the universe. Or at least the key that commands a giant army of robot assassins.
   To make matters worse, the power the key wields is immense and addicting to anyone who is not meant to hold it. This means that her own mother (who held the key while Ellie was still a developing tadpole) is also after her Lucky Charms. The only person who seems to have Ellie's best interest in mind is the genetically engineered assassin who was sent to kill her and even he is full of secrets.
   And if making matters worse wasn't bad enough, there's Bethany, an obnoxious New Yorker and Ellie's best friend who happens to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Ellie now has to save her friends and family, release her people from enslavement, find the army of robots she holds the key to command, and take out the evil overlord. And here she thought failing organic chemistry was the worst thing that could happen to her!

Narissa Fox
   Narissa is human, but she wasn't born on Earth. She comes to us from the near distant future of the late twenty second century, after humans have colonized the entire solar system and our numbers have grown into the high trillions. The class divide has gotten even bigger and due to our sheer number and insatiable need to expand, exploitation of the lower class is a given.
   Narissa is a Navigational Reconnaissance Pilot, or NRP for short. Amongst NRPs, this stands for No Return Plotted. Narissa and others like her were culled from the prison colony of Farfalla. Farfalla is where the brightest criminal minds are held until there is a need to put them to work doing something dangerous that requires quick thinking.  Narissa is a criminal, but she is not bright. She was never intended for Farfalla.
  She was a small time thief and a drug addict that made Keith Richards look like an amateur. As her punishment, Narissa was supposed to go through Humane Occupational Rehabilitation, which is anything but humane. She is carved up and patched up until she looks exactly like Marilyn Monroe and is scheduled to be lobotomized. After, she is to be sent to a luxury colony where she is to become a sex worker. Humans suck, don't they?
   However, she catches the eye of one of the guards from Farfalla and he fakes her intelligence test scores to get her into his colony, where he does unspeakable things and she doesn't even have the luxury of being lobotomized. But soon enough his deception is revealed and she is rescued. Sort of. The scientist of Farfalla aren't going to let an unlobotomized brain go to waste.
   Stripped of her 'enhancements' and left looking like the Elephant man after losing a fight with the Hulk, Narissa is given a ship with a learning AI, auto navigation, and a medicine cabinet the size of a walk in pantry, stocked with all manner of drugs, some legal, some lethal. Her job is to drop transmission outposts in the uncharted space outside the solar system. NRPs have a zero percent retirement rate thanks to the fact that they are cheaper and more expendable than drone ships.
   At the beginning of the book, Narissa and Buddy, her ship's AI, have just gone down the proverbial rabbit hole and ended up in pink space that sends Buddy's sensors into a tailspin. Narissa copes by taking a near lethal dose of everything and accidentally navigates them through what had been a trap. Her ship is captured and she finds herself the prisoner of a colony of former NRPs who escaped by passing along coded information about how to navigate a particularly ornery wormhole.
   Anyone else who came through was sent into the pink space trap and assumed dead. Narissa is the first person to escape what should have been impossible. Seeing as she is also NRP, they release her on the condition that she join their militia who is hellbent on waging war against the ruling class of the solar system. Narissa doesn't want to be stuck in prison and she likes the idea of revenge against those that put her into the situation she found herself in, but there's just one problem with joining the resistance: She's ordered to go through rehab.

Like I said, different as night and day. Ellie's story will be light space opera with a romantic subplot. Narissa's story is much darker, may or may not involve romance, but will definitely involve sex, drugs, and a foul mouth. I may consider a slightly altered pen name.


  1. My "natural " leaning would usually be towards the second option (as you might probably guess) but for some reason in this instance I'm actually quite taken by the princess robot overlord dairies idea, so I'm going to vote for that one!


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