Strands in the Web

Those of you who have read all of my short stories as I’ve been publishing them have probably already noticed this, but my most recent story, “Agent of Change”, incorporates characters and plot elements from four of the previous stories. The rest of this post will primarily discuss the process behind writing “Agent of Change.”

Trussk, the protagonist, is also one of the two central characters in the stories “The Life We Choose” and “The Road We Walk”. Aurora, the librarian, was also a minor character in “Come Hell or High Water” by Erika Rowlee, the first story in Tales from the Heart of Astine; in fact, Aurora is also a prominent character in the third book of the trilogy that I am currently drafting. Sid, Skyler, and Letha, the antagonists of the story, were the protagonists of “Breakout”. And the whole political situation of the Matton House being dismantled and creating a power vacuum is explained in greater detail in Joel Cox’s story “Innocent.”

I hope that “Agent of Change” was enjoyable even if you have not read all of the stories that it drew from. In writing this story, I was attempting two things: obviously, I was attempting to write a story that was enjoyable and rounded out the project satisfactorily. Secondly, I was also trying to establish my world and the stories therein as interconnected. Each of the characters in these stories can and probably will come up again in future stories. My earlier stories such as “Vengeance” and “Invisible Warrior” are, of course, in this same world, but are geographically far removed from Astine, so it is unlikely that those characters will make reappearances in the near future.

If you particularly enjoyed or disliked this story because of its interconnected nature, please let me know. I plan on writing more stories like this in the future, and while I will try to make them all stand on their own, I do want to be aware if readers are finding my stories confusing so that I can address and correct the problem. If you really enjoyed it, I would love to hear from you. Whether you read all of the stories prior to “Agent of Change” or read it individually and enjoyed it on its own, it will be an encouragement to me to know if you liked it. If you didn’t enjoy it, I would still love to know why, so that I can write more appealing stories in the future. Please comment on this post, email me, or message me on my Facebook page and share your thoughts!

Personally, I found it incredibly rewarding to write this story. It was the first story that I have written in which I was able to pit protagonists from two previously unconnected stories against each other, and I found the process very enjoyable. I hope it was as entertaining for you as it was for me!