Author Steven Lake

Interesting Publishing and Writing Facts About Me
Saturday, October 21st, 2017 12:15pm
Keywords: Books, Writing, Publishing, Facts, About Me, Interesting

I just thought I'd share this little tidbit with you guys today as a way to better get to know me and my books.  I've always had an interest in writing and creating stories, but the itch never really got scratched until I was in the Army.  My first books were written on an electric typewriter, and then my writing later progressed to being done on a computer.  I'm glad for the progression.  It made writing a LOT easier. :)  My first story I wrote was called "Striders" and was basically a Voltron knockoff.  As an interesting little factoid about that, I wrote the first third of the book before hitting major writer's block that eventually doomed the project to the bin.  However, at a later time I decided to give it another try, so I went looking for the manuscript.

I couldn't find it anywhere.  So, I sat down and rewrote the story, and once again hit the same brick wall.  However, shortly after that I found the original manuscript and, to my complete surprise, the two were almost word for word identical.  That still didn't save the project, but it did give me a huge confidence boost and encouraged me to continue pursuing my love of writing.  My success to failure rate (not publishing failure, but rather completion failure) is about 1 in 10.  For every 10 ideas I start out with, only one makes it to publication.  Out of nearly 200 ideas I've started out with, only 19 have reached publication so far, and that includes individual books within larger series.

Out of all of the books I've written and published, Oort Perimeter, from the Earthfleet Saga, was the first one to successfully make it into print.  However, it was NOT the first full novel I wrote that made it into print.  That honor goes to Lion in the Wind.  I started on that book about the same time I was working on "Striders".  20 years later it was finally published, and for no lack of trying on my part.  It just took a while before I found a story I was finally happy with.  Plus the story grew and matured over time along with me as I also matured as a writer.  Plus, it's the only story that was penned in my early years as a writer that survived to see publication.  The sequels though were actually kind of a fluke.  Originally I had no interest in writing a sequel.  Yet, the story kept telling me that it wasn't through yet and there was still so much more to be told.  As a result, one book turned into four.

Another interesting story is about the creation of the Offworld Chronicles.  That's a series which started out as just a single book.  However, I never felt like I'd done enough with it, and had kinda shortchanged the story, as there was so much more to be told.  So I went back, rewrote it, and began to expand it out and tell it like I had originally wanted.  I think my biggest issue is that I hit a point in the story where I grew tired of it.  Offworld Chronicles is NOT an easy story to write, even though it may seem like it would be, and the deeper I get into it, the more respect I have for those who have done long book series, as I'm only two books in and just barely 1/3rd of the way through the story.  Or at least that far into the race within the narrative.  How many more books there will be is still up in the air, but we'll see.

As an interesting bit of trivia in regards to that story, Offworld Chronicles started out as merely an idea in my head several years back that was based upon a musing that I was kicking around at the time.  It actually began as the result of my interest in survival shows during that period.  For some reason I got on a great big survivalist kick and as a result the story was born out of it.  The way the thought went that started all of this was to ask myself, "If I could only take 3 things with me into the woods to survive, what would they be?"  That then evolved into sort of a survival race which evolved into other things, and then eventually the Offworld Chronicles.  Some of the characters that eventually became part of Simon's team were elements of that musing and eventually became part of the story.  IE, "What would it be like if I picked up other people along the way, what would my team look like?" and more.

The Earthfleet Saga is another series that began as a simple idea and a musing.  I'm not sure exactly where the Sergenious came from, but the whole series started out centered around a starship, not unlike a modified SR71 in form and likeness, which eventually gained a controlling AI along the way (Sarah), which in time ultimately grew into a super massive world.  But what started out the world itself was merely the question of "where is this ship and what's its purpose?"  Basically I had the ship, the tech, the AI and no world or story to go with it.  So by asking a LOT of questions, I was able to build the super massive world that surrounds that ship and the series.  And in a way, the Sergenious is just as much a main character in the story as Mike and Sarah are.  It graces the reader with its presense throughout all 4 books of the Saga, Dark Earth, and a yet to be completed novel called "Weaver's Forge".  The latter one was dropped a while back prior to completion when I realized that the series needed a rewrite to fix some major flaws that had built up over time.

However, the rewrite never happened as, shortly after I pulled the books, I lost my extensive wiki and most of my notes on the series.  So before I can rewrite and improve the series, I have to go back in and rebuild the ENTIRE world, the wiki, all my notes, etc.  So it's gonna be a LOT of work, but at some point it'll get completed.  I'm just not sure when.  Given all the work that'll be needed to rebuild the world, I am currently planning to start work on that AFTER the completion of Offworld Chronicles and Land of the Lions.  Once those two are completed I will have the ability to go back into the series, read through it, fix the issues that were found, upgrade the story using all of the skills I have gained since its completion, and then rerelease it as a better, richer book series.  Anyhow, that's a short tidbit about my books.

At some point I plan to go over several other book series that I'm working on that are still in my "todo" pile that never quite reached completion or the ideas are still incomplete, and thus the books are not finished.  In the end though I hope to let you see some of the ideas in my todo bin and see which ones you like best.  Those that are the most interesting to you, the reader, will be the next ones worked on.  Anyhow, that's all I have for today.  Please feel free to let me know your thoughts.  Thanks.

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