Sunday, September 27, 2015

The Onyx Cluster

After finishing my last novel roughly a month ago, I'm back at it.  I've started writing The Onyx Cluster, and this one promises to be my most bizarre novel to date.

I got the idea for The Onyx Cluster from a dream.  In that dream, I was wandering around a post-apocalyptic wasteland following a nuclear war.  Everything was pretty much as you'd expect - buildings shattered, the sky darkened, very few people - and I stumbled on a group of folks meeting in a barn in the country.  Of course it was nighttime, and, not wanting to disturb them, I hid in the hayloft of this barn and listened to what they were saying.

What they said proved uninteresting that I don't remember what it was.  However, it was the next part that sent chills through my spine, for just as their meeting was winding down, a group of phantoms appeared out of nowhere and sliced the group to death.  Most of them just showed up behind people and slit their throats.  Terrified, I tried hiding under the straw in the hayloft, but the wood gave way and I fell to the floor.  One of the phantoms looked at me while I stared back.  Its expression was mostly blank, but there was the faintest trace of a smirk indicating amusement.  As I stared at it again, I saw something else.

It's eyes were bright white.

No, not the white you get from a lamp, but rather from someone with no irises or pupils, and it was as if there was a small light behind them.  I don't know what it was, but this was the aspect that scared me the most.  I got the distinct impression it knew me before it, along with all the others, simply vanished into nothingness.

After waking up and making sure I was still sane, I got to wondering about the dream.  Where would such creatures come from?  Why would they attack a group of innocent people who looked like they couldn't threaten anyone?  Moreover, how did this thing know me, and why did it let me go?  As a writer, I knew I had the bones to a novel.

I still can't break the plot down to a single sentence yet, although I'm confident I'll get there.  The path from beginning to end in this book is going to go down some bizarre roads.  I'll have to throw "normal" out the window and focus on sanity being trapped in an insane world.

Given that I've already written over 20,000 words, I feel I have a great head start.  Some of what I wrote will have to change, but the foundation is there.  This one should come out to around 90,000 words, so if I can stay as focused here as I was on Fight Or Flight, I'll be finished by Thanksgiving.  That will be tough, but it's doable.  If nothing else, it'll be fun trying.

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