Well, I got through a difficult part. One of my characters gets raped. I don’t go into detail because I kind of feel like that’s just being unnecessarily graphic, and I like the reader to handle some of their own demons while reading through this. It’s tough abusing the characters you write about, but this does have an element of horror. Hell, it’s goddamn horror tragedy, and part of that is tugging emotional responses from the reader. One of the things that I tried to confront was some inner demons and maybe use some of the elements that I think George Lucas was TRYING to say in “The Phantom Menace.”

Anakin Skywalker was one of those tragic heroes, and while I know the story got all messed up and poorly edited, the thing I got out of it was that here was a kid who was brought up in slavery, “rescued” by Jedi, only to have his mother die on him. The Jedi did not address his emotional needs, and stretched thin by the Sith who kept them in pointless battles, they didn’t see just how dangerous he was beyond mere speculation. The Dark Side clouds everything. I think this is why “a balance to the force” was needed at this point: you had the Sith who were just a bunch of destructive cowards, and then you had the snooty Jedi who were so wrapped up in political bureaucracy, they lost sight of pretty much everything important. I can imagine the Jedi, not even knowing the Sith were still around, didn’t think anything needed “balance.”

I always thought the “Chosen One” was not so much a prophesy, but an inevitability of self-correction.

When I set to write this, and the entire thing became fleshed out in my head as I lay on a very uncomfortable mattress in a spartan apartment we were crashing in during ConTEXT, I knew that steampunk was staring me in the face, and I always wanted to do a really uncomfortable Lovecraft-themed horror. Why not combine the two? This poor Heather, a young female prodigy in a misogynist culture is “rescued” by a very well meaning band of people set to prevent what will be a global catastrophe, but inevitably it is their own loss of their vision that leads our protagonist down to madness. Nature is full of self-corrective measures, even if it involves summoning horrible creatures from the depths of the ocean.

I just hope if they make a movie out of it, they don’t cast some emotionless hack.