This all began because I wanted to read a certain a kind of story. But it wasn't the kind of story I could find. I was looking for a certain vibe. I wanted detail. I wanted realism (realisticism?). I wanted a constant introduction of new people, new places, new ideas. I wanted the slow burn of tiny moments accumulating day-by-day. If there was such a thing as cozy action, I wanted some of that as well.
Since I couldn't find it, I started trying to write it. It began with Graef. I can't decide if he's "Elric trapped in Conan's body" or "Jack Reacher Meets Conan". He's probably a combo of the two - "Elric Reacher Trapped in Conan's body".
That's why I describe it as gritty epic fantasy. Grit is small, hard, and rough. Like the lives of the poor in the city of Abbalas. By starting so low it gives lots of room and time for the inevitable escalation towards the epic.
My name is James and it took a while but I've learned that I'm wired to write serial fiction. It isn't the most useful wiring to have, but I'm leaning into it.
How did I work this out? Through years and years spent on a wide variety of writing projects. But it was a podcast that clicked.
In 2019 I wrote, recorded, and produced a single voice, 22 episode fiction podcast called Future Is Mecha. The scripts totalled over 80,000 words. Episodes were written, recorded, edited, and released weekly by me. I didn't miss a week.
Then in 2020 I wrote and published (on Instagram of all places) 50 short stories in 65 days. 50 original (and mostly weird) ideas inspired by the lockdown. Over 60,000 words.
There's something about regularly delivering new stories and seeing an audience build over time that inspires me. Not at all similar to being a freelance writer. Not at all.
So, I have a track record for delivering original and engaging stories on schedule. It's not just practice. Like I said, it's the way I'm wired. All I need is a story that inspires me. Like Graef's. And an audience that can make it sustainable.
Believe it or not, producing 3000-7000 words of polished story per week is not a heavy workload. I don't need to sustain a Brandon Sanderson level of productivity to make this happen. But it does take time each and every day.
As I launch this story I have over 100,000 words of world building and plotting to work from. I also have the first 12 chapters written and ready to publish.
Graef's story is not going to fit the standard moulds of fantasy. But it is going to be a sprawling story. An epic story. It's going places.
Every chapter will be free to read on this site as it is published.
If this sounds interesting, if you're looking for an original story built around rich details and deep characters, join the list to receive every chapter in your inbox as soon as they are published.
A little about me
I work by day as a freelance copywriter / SEO / digital comms person. I've got a partner and a couple of kids, and the kids have a couple of cats. I'm a big believer in self publishing.
I live on the outskirts of Sydney, Australia. If you suffer any geographic confusion while reading you might want to remember that this story is being written in the Southern Hemisphere.