It’s actually a huge relief to be working on something so different from The Shadow Mile (and yet similar stylistically) while TSM is out on submission. I looked over my list of WIPs and project ideas, and decided I needed to settle down and work on one thing, and so the current darling is KEEPER.
Two cities, Torque and Base, once ran like rooms into one another, connected by a dozen gates. Both glittered and thrived, enchanted. That was before the world burned down. Now, the city of Torque has no soul, and the city of Base is gone entirely, and there is no such thing a magic. Inside the city of Torque, the boys of Wallow House gather to receive their weekly service assignments. 13-year-old Evan Ashford waits for his name to be called, hating the uniform he wears and the way he is seen (but not seen). Evan dreams of being dependent on no one, of being free. When he gets assigned "gate duty," (a symbolic task, tradition, though no one knows why), he wishes he could trade for something less boring, like toilets, or alley sweep.
Seven days trapped in the musty windowless room staring at a stupid stone arch seems unbearable. But when Evan awakens the one gate left between Torque and Base, he exposes the darkest secrets of his own world a buried past, a forgotten war, a demon king– and uncovers another world entirely.
I’m surprisingly excited to be working on this. I set it aside for a little, to mull it over and because school demanded it, but I’m glad it’s here for me now when I need it, ready and waiting to be told. It’s a “boy book” in many ways, and honestly the closest to something I would have read. It’s toeing the line of fantasy right now, but hopefully the style will give it a little more of the fairy tale feel I love.
And Alex, if you get bored and want to make me a wonderful icon (after you make some for the other dozen people) I think that would be lovely visual accompaniment :p
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