When one door closes, the saying goes, another elephant-sized hole gets blown clean out of the wall next to it. Or something.
This week I turned copies of The Fall Of The Hammer over to my readers, took a deep breath, and opened a new, blank wiki. Because over the course of the last few weeks, as I was yanking commas and restoring clauses in Hammer, a new idea hath cometh forth-eth.
The working title for this new project, tentatively to be delivered in 2021, is Unmortal, and it is an extension and expansion on some of the flavor of setting I explored in Hammer — a fantasy-type setting but with notions about how to regard the setting drawn more from SF than other fantasy.
The best way I can put it is, the attitude that things like cyberpunk have about their settings from the inside would be interesting to explore in a fantasy setting. What happens when a world that's informed by the fantasy (subjective) worldview starts becoming informed more by the science fiction (objectiove) worldview? As my friend Steven Savage put it, what might happen if people in a Tolkien-esque universe realized they were now living in a William Gibson-esque universe? How would they deal? Would they even be able to deal?
Now, I didn't start from that particular insight; I actually started on a completely different foot, and only came to that insight in an after-the-fact way. But it beautifully summed one of the key explorations I wanted to make with the story: the transition from the premodern world view to the modern world view, and maybe also the postmodern world view. And how those stuck inside the world making that transition would cope ... or not.
I'm keeping details about Unmortal skinny for now, if only because a) I tend to keep new project details close to the vest until they are out of the oven, sliced, and in the breadbasket (I hate spoilers), and b) I have to devote space to promoting Hammer over the next several weeks instead of talking in detail about new projects. But the bucket's been thrown back down in the well, and it's come back up running over.