This post concludes the Complex Connections series, which I started writing several months ago, to discuss the follow up I am planning to my published novel, Beneath the Surface. This follow up could be considered a prequel or a sequel or both, due to the fact that Beneath the Surface includes the aspect of time travel – the events of this new set of stories had already happened before the events of the original novel, but the actions of the main protagonist of Beneath the Surface, Maria, results in those same events never taking place… Confusing, yes. The structure of this sequel/prequel will take the reader from character to character, jumping from story to story, with some of the characters coming from Beneath the Surface, and some being brand new.
The posts have given me a forum to talk more about my novel, but they have also helped me to focus on my new work and helped provide inspiration for me with regards the new characters I have created. Hopefully, this will also have inspired some of the readers of this blog to develop their own characters, by further exploring their backgrounds and motivations.
The title of these posts – Complex Connections – refers firstly to the ways in which this follow up will link to Beneath the Surface. This, as you’ve probably gathered, is quite complicated. There will be seven stories in this new novel, and four of them will come from characters that feature in Beneath the Surface, but due to the fact that time travel is involved, their stories are now coming from an alternate reality. Joining up these connections has been quite a challenge, but in some ways it has allowed me more freedom to further explore the notion of what it would be like in a world where, due to extra terrestrial forces, human life has suddenly, completely, changed.
Complex Connections also refers to the intricate links between the seven characters and their individual stories. In the snapshot of their lives that these stories will focus on, none of the seven will meet each other, and some of them will never meet each other. But I want to emphasis the fact that strangers, even ones who live on opposite sides of the world, can still be connected, and can be brought together under extreme circumstances through their shared human experiences, sometimes without even knowing it. They might have a mutual acquaintance; they might have contact with each other online using aliases, or, unbeknownst to any of them, they might be fighting each other, each one fighting for what they believe is morally right.
I’m quite a fan of books that feature some kind of visual representation of certain aspects of the story – maps, family trees, etc – and the first draft of this diagram illustrates some of those complex connections between the interweaving stories of these characters.