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The Darkening

I’ve started reworking the YA adult sci fi novel I was writing. That was called All Fell Down and it was about an alien invasion, a boy called Jacob and an alien girl called Glaya. This reworked (completely rewritten and bearing no resemblance really to the original) novel is less dark and more heavy with the clash of realism and fantasy.  I like that idea – how something sci-fiction-y happens in a real setting, just because aliens invade doesn’t mean everything suddenly becomes hi-tech etc.  This new book is called The Darkened and it’s about a boy called Jacob and an alien girl called Glaya.  The chapters alternate between the two characters and over 16 chapters each  we get about 4 days worth of action.

I should mention it’s also a sort of zombie book. I’m trying not to think of it as that too much. The alien invasion sort of creates the ‘Changed’. The aliens have invaded because they themselves were infected by a disease called the ‘Darkening’. 

The main plot is that Jacob is told by his girlfriend that she’s pregnant on the night before the alien invasion. He tells her he’ll marry her and then immediately regrets that. Luckily/unluckily for him Charlotte, like many other humans, vanishes and Jacob feels that he has to find her. But he’s confused – confused whether he loves her enough, confused whether he wants to be a dad, confused about the bloody great alien ship hovering on the horizon.

The other side to this is Glaya. Glaya is one of the aliens. She was infected with the Darkening.  She isn’t anymore.  She’s in Charlotte’s body now and she’s drawn back to the wasteland that the earth has become.

So you get it, both characters are drawn together but it’s not a traditional love at all costs thing. 

And just to make matters worse the Changed/Darkened humans/Fell are everywhere – hungry, red hands groping, black liquid dripping down their faces.

When I started writing this I set it an unnamed area of the UK and I was moving the action to London but then I don’t know London.I know Liverpool, Cheshire. So Jacob is from Cheshire and the space ship hovers over Liverpool.  I can visualize all that.

I’ll post a chapter or two. I’m 30,00 words in with around 20,000 more left. I’m aiming to finish draft 1 this week because my wife is off work but it’s not working out like that. I wrote the first 24,000 words quickly but that was all Jacob’s pov. Now I’m on Glaya’s and I’m having to match timelines, chronology and make her pov reach its conclusion at the same point as Jacob’s. It’s more of a challenge but nevertheless fun.

So….The Darkening Chapter 1 – Jacob…


About michaeleganpoetry

Liverpool based poet and editor. I have had four pamphlets of poetry published, most recently After Stikklestad (Knives, Forks and Spoons Press, 2010). Penned in the Margins published my first collection, Steak & Stations, in 2010.

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