Here we go again. Welcome to the blog blast of the section that I call The Kingdom from the book Reality of the Unreal Mind, Vol. 3: The Keep. The Kingdom is an explanation of the work itself. You can’t understand any writer unless you know their work. So today we begin at 6 p.m. and I will release one blog every two hours and fifteen minutes. That means we’ll finish the story of my work and its future, my work and its past, at 7:30 on Sunday evening. There are some crazy things in here. Some setbacks we never could have made it past without the people who care about me. There are some crazy things in here. Plans that I have and things that I’m doing that, simply put, are impossible. But everything’s impossible until it’s finished, until it’s been done or accomplished. There are some crazy things in here. Dreams so wild and so immense that to think they’re within reach you have to be a little unhinged. And while reading this small collection of blog posts, you’ll hear the rantings of the Lunatic of Fantasy. You’ll find in these posts the past, present, and future of the writing of Jesse Teller.
Eighteen books and I am missing something.
They jump all over the place with no order and no years. See I don’t have years. My entire career has been built on the idea of jumping in chronological order and I have no years. What I need is a mark.
I need a BC/AD for my world. I could count the end of the God War as the mark but my world is old, 120,000 years old, and I am working with one and two years. I think the biggest jump at this point is twenty years and that won’t work. I can’t have year 120,056. That is ridiculous and so easily dismissed. That number is wrong. So wrong.
Also the whole thing is scrapped because I have no idea what the shattered moon means. Yeah, I know there is a god free. He is not a good guy and his nemesis will be breaking out too, very soon, but what does that give me? One big headache. One big glob of mess that I have no plan for. And where does that lead? Does their war destroy a nation? A continent? A world, maybe many worlds?
At this point I have the world of man or Timea, I have the Veil, I have Hell, I have Heaven, I have Dimlot, the world of shadow, which is vague and globby. I have the land of the angels called the Vault. No rhyme, no map. None of it makes any sense and it has no form. What I have is a bunch of floating pieces with nothing holding them together, no point to them at all. And it’s a problem, a big problem because I am slated to release my first book in two weeks.
Now in our house deadlines mean something. Bekah works a job that has very strict deadlines and I have modeled, basically every bit of my career and work ethic, my understanding on art, and my understanding of the execution of projects, off of her. Deadlines have to mean something or this release is floating. So we can’t just push this deadline back because I am a mess.
I need to get my shit together. I no longer have Prince. I no longer have Artist. Shade can’t tell me what to do. I am alone, with a great body of work that is like trying to stack slugs, slipping and shifting on itself. And I have one amazing woman ready to help me in any way she can.
And all she can do is listen to me work it out. All she can do is hear me run on in a conversation I am having with myself that I am directing at her. She can let Adam talk.
Shower. A lot of good ideas come to him in the shower. So he shaves. He gets the water ready and he steps into the shower and, like a bolt from the heavens, it hits him.
The Escape is the BC/AD of the world. It is the biggest thing to happen to this world or any of my creation since the God War. It is all that matters. We line everything up by the Escape.
Then Bekah stays silent as I wash and talk, and lets me build.
“Everything from Liefdom to The Great Hall is act one.”
“Okay. That’s twenty-five books.”
This is not critique, this is a statement, a reminder maybe. A way of saying, this is what you just said. Go from here. So she reminded me how many books I was planning for a first act. And the gravity and the size of what I was saying truly hit me. Twenty-five books, which turned into twenty-eight, but twenty-five books as a first act means I have to have a second and third. Second and third act means I have to have each act big enough that it’s not smothered by act one. By saying the first act is twenty-five books, I have just committed to a monstrous project.
And I have no idea what I am talking about. Maybe it is inspired by Artist. Maybe it is just coming to me, like the times when I don’t know what I am going to write and out it comes anyway.
“I don’t know where this is coming from,” I say.
“Doesn’t matter, just get out of its way,” Bekah said. “Keep talking.”
Well the Demons and the Sentinels ended the first God War. In the short The Second Age they promise Simon Bard that if another God War ever starts that they will stop it. This is why The Valkyrie created the Hoodsmen. She wants them to be her army.
“There are four armies. Both gods get an army, the Demons get an army and The Sentinels get an army. Demons and Sentinels are on the same team kinda, sorta. And they are trying to break up the two gods’ war.
“Worlds War,” I said. “Nothing survives. That is the second act. Total devastation.”
She is silent. She knows that can’t work. You can’t build a world with a serious number of books and series and then kill everybody. She knows this will never work but she is standing aside now. She is not getting in the way. She just wants me to keep punching because I am hitting something.
I am getting there.
I feel the warm water on my body. It feels like it is pressing me in, as if it is hugging me close. I let it hold me, the warmth, the soothing pounding on my shoulders and head. I want more. I am ready for more. Because I am not there yet.
“Worlds War. Then maybe the demons don’t want to leave after.” Sparks are flying off of me now, mixing with the water to electrocute me into spasms and twitching. I can feel my face squirming. I can feel my legs jumping. I am on fire it seems. Sparking and jumping as it comes to me. This is all of it. This is the entire plan right here.
“The tattered remains of both armies are tied together to fight back the demons. I know who will lead it. And I know who the leader of the Demon Army is.”
“In Onslaught of Madness Rextur gets seduced by that demoness. She was sent to get his seed so she could make a warrior for the demons. They are led by Rextur’s son.”
“What is his name?”
“I can’t right now.”
“Fine,” she says. “What else do you have?”
The third act is post-apocalyptic. The great war is over. The land is destroyed. The water table of magic under the ground is on fire. Any mages or wizards try to use magic and a great fount of flame rises out of the ground like a geyser and burns them alive.
“The gods are back at war. They are running and hiding and I know who from. The gods that can’t escape are hiding on the world trying to do their best. When they commit a miracle, they run as fast as they can to get away for fear of the man who is hunting them narrowing down where they are.”
“What else?” she asks. She has to gently fan this. She can’t throw gas on it. She has to just let it burn. This is going somewhere.
Suddenly I burst into tears. “I can’t get out of the shower. I am done washing. I know I am done, but I can’t get out. I can’t. I just cant.” I am in hysterics; my mind is bending. I am so close, but my mind is snapping. It is bending and folding and I have to stay in this environment to fix this last bit into place. I can’t see it yet and the pressure is getting to me.
I am a sobbing mess, in a hot shower. My mind is boiling and I hear her cool voice.
“You don’t have to get out. Stay in there as long as you want. We have plenty of hot water. Just relax. Nothing is wrong. You don’t have to get out. Stay calm. What else do you see?”
And I am shaking and sobbing and my heart is pounding and I am having a panic attack but I am close to something. I am almost there.
“Hell has endless demons and the gates are open. This guy patching together an army has no hope of stopping a demon army with unlimited resources.” Then sparks again and I let my muscles jump.
“Rextur has a patchwork army. Demons won’t stop coming. He could never win this war. But he’s got a best friend who survived the destruction of the world, who decides to help.”
“One man at first but he puts together a crew in Hell to invade and conquer.”
Very gentle nudge now. “Do you see anything else?”
And here it is. This is the x factor. The one thing that no one will see coming.
“I have Simon Bard,” I say. “He tells stories.”
“What if every book in the first act is him telling a story to a group of leaders that will be the generals of the army fighting the demons? The first act is all about leadership. It is everywhere in the first act. The first act drips with it.” Then I get stuck. “The first act.” Sobbing. “The first act.” Trembling. “The first act. The first act.” Over and over again I say it and she eases her way in.
“Stay with me, honey. What else? The first act is about leadership. What else? What do you have?”
“Every book in the first and second act is a collection of stories told to the would-be generals of that army that is beating back the demons. And I can hide it in the books and no one will see it.”
I pull back the curtain exhausted. I have a towel now; she might have handed it to me. It might have appeared out of thin air. I might have conjured it up from the ethos. It’s possible that it is a hallucination created by Artist. I don’t trust it and I keep staring at it.
“It’s okay, baby. Go ahead and dry off.” She smiles at me. “You are doing so well. What can you tell me about the hidden messages?”
I look at her and burst into tears again. “I saw it before I published anything. Do you see the miracle here? I saw the whole thing before I published anything.”
“I know you did, honey. Come lay down. Tell me what you are going to do. It sounds so exciting.”
“Every book is going to start as an introduction to a class. Every book will have this section that doesn’t make any sense. It will just be a one-sided dialogue for a long time. And it is Simon Bard telling the would-be generals why he is telling them this story.”
She smiles. “I love you.”
“Do you see the beauty of it?”
“Yes, love, I do. Can you come to the bed and lay down under the fan for a second? I am worried you will fall down.”
I let myself be led. “I can do this from the start. Liefdom has not been released yet. When I am done, the entire first and second act will be seen as one big set of stories told to young generals in order to get them prepared to fight the third act.”
“I see.” She has me in bed. She is up on an elbow lying next to me. “Very good, honey. Very good. This is amazing work. I want you to lay here and rest for a while.”
I look at her sobbing. “Okay.” I search her face. “Did I do good?”
“You did very good. This is amazing. From the very beginning it will be shown to them.”
I stare at the ceiling. “The mind will dismiss it as soon as the story starts. Everyone will read it. No one will remember it as soon as it is not relevant in the first few chapters. And they will be short introductions, too. No more than two pages at the max. They will look at it, read it, and forget it. They won’t see it right out in front of them the whole time.”
“I want you to rest. I love you. It’s perfect. They will never see it coming. Even if you point it out to them, they will forget.” She kisses me to remind me I am real.
Then she lets me simmer and cool. She lets it all run out of me. I might forget by the morning. Because I am in bed now. I won’t be getting up. There is a chance I will forget by morning. But she will remind me.
We have it now.
It is beautiful. It is devastating. It is madness.
This chapter is from Reality of the Unreal Mind, Vol. 3: The Keep, available on Amazon.