National Novel Writing Month is a global writing event held online each November and I’ve taken the plunge this year and joined in. While I’m still editing the audiobook version of “HIGH GROUND,” its sequel, “ARTIFICIAL HORIZON” officially set sail today, the first day of NaNoWriMo 2018. Thirty days of churning out an average 1,667 words a day of a new novel. Wish me luck!
Full disclosure, I have an outline of my story, so call me a planner, not a pantser (as in seat of) The new novel will have new key characters as well as the return of Ruth, Margaret, Esther and some of the townspeople from Book One.
Both a prequel and a sequel to “High Ground,” the novel begins on Whaleback Island, off the coast of Leitrim, Maine where “High Ground” took place. A once-busy fishing and marble quarrying island populated by almost three thousand hardy souls, Whaleback’s population has dwindled to eighteen. And two of its young men decide to set out to forge a life on the mainland. One relents and soon returns to the island, while the other dies in the Brandt’s winter home in Bangor at the hands of Esther’s father.
In this novel, we meet her father Fehrman Brandt, near the height of his power and wealth, her mother Mary and wild and careless older sister Cassandra, who had a hand in the death. Esther is a sweet thirteen-year-old as the story begins.
The prequel and sequel stories will run in parallel, the Whaleback connection to the Brandts and the return to Maine of F-15 pilot Michael Babcock, the man who flew the final High Ground mission over the Brandt estate. He has busted out as a High Ground Technologies test pilot because of health effects suffered on the fateful mission. He is anguished that he played a role in tormenting Esther and the town and is returning to Maine to seek them out and apologize. Shortly after doing so, he disappears. Meg, Ruth and Esther fear for him and set out to find out what happened.
That’s all for now. 2500 words of the first draft now exist, with more to come tomorrow. Well, that and the cover: