80,000 words at this crucial second draft, and something magical happened. The novel ended, after a series of cuts and rewrites to the finale, and I realised I 'could' leave it there. Or... I could go ahead and announce that this novel is actually the 'first of a series' of Free Planet novels.
As you'll see from the reworked cover for this first novel in the Free Planet series, it has become book one: CUSTODIAN, the subtitle being (book one of the Free Planet series).
It's still a book about The Custodians and You The People but there'll be more importance placed upon the eponymous 'custodian' role in book one. What it also does is associate MY NAME directly with the Custodian Movement; it should be more focussed (for me), so that it's thematically richer (for you).
Therefore, it suits the series better if I sacrifice the 'free planet' title to that of 'free planet series' title and bring the 'custodian' aspect of this first book more into play. I mean, it's there anyway, via the Custodian Movement but this way we get to see see how 'real heroes are made' from the most unlikely of raw material.
Custodian, book one of the Free Planet novel series, is an absolutely insane fairground ride glimpse into one of our potential near futures. But it's something else, it has these quite nauseating rhythms all through it, these dislocating dissonances, these lethal edges of total and utter vomit-inducing paranoia. I knew it was going to be an unpleasant read but I didn't realise it would be such an unhinged experience. It's the nasty feeling in your guts, as The Custodians and You The People alternately do their upmost to totally fuck up whatever amount of promise this Free Planet idea may once have had.
I have a detailed notion of where such a series would go, starting with book two: LIBERATOR and book three: ENEMY -- it's going to be such a beautiful and brutal storyline. Trust me, I'm an author.