Sunday, 24 June 2012

Progress report on 'Here Be Dragons'

As you're probably aware, i'm in the middle of writing three books.  One is close to being ready to be published as an Ebook and probably also a small paperback for using, in one way or another, on the toilet.  I will temporarily draw a veil over the second except for a dark muttering about E4, the TV channel.  One or two people might know what i mean by that.

The third is of course 'Here Be Dragons'.  This started life when i noticed that my best science sessions seemed to be based around groups attempting to design things, particularly when they were trying to make up an animal.  Moreover, the most engaging animals are mythical ones.  Therefore i decided to write a modern bestiary, entitled 'Here Be Dragons'.

Enough of the preamble.  The current state of the book is as follows.  After opening with a factual introduction, it is framed in the device of being a report by an organisation  called the ITA - the Interdimensional Transport Authority.  This is a secret organisation set up to investigate the discovery of a booth which enables people to travel to alternate universes, of which four have so far been discovered.  These are:

* World Zero:  This world.
* Realistic World:  A world which is superficially identical to this one but where popular misconceptions, urban myths and conspiracy theories are usually true.
* Midgard:  A version of Earth which is slowly recovering from Ragnarok and is populated by creatures similar to those of Norse myth.
* Ancient World:  Where many mythical entities and lands really exist, such as dragons, centaurs and Atlantis, and where real things in World Zero such as America and kangaroos are merely mythical.
* Aphrodite's Children:  A flat world on the back of four elephants on a turtle in the imagination of a planetary intelligence on Ancient world's version of Venus.

This book is based on the mediaeval bestiaries, but has since mutated into a combination of a bestiary and an atlas.  It's currently 66 000 words long, includes a number of maps and diagrams but so far, no pictures of animals because of my questionable drawing skills.  I don't know when it'll be finished but it feeels like it's growing and growing endlessly with no end in sight.  I think what i'll have to do is settle on a more detailed plan and stick to it.

So anyway, in the meantime you may want to read my other book, 'You Could've Thought Of That', which will be coming out very soon.