Cy Reed Goes Supernatural?

Here’s this week’s writing excerpt, completed just yesterday. This story has a strong supernatural side, similar in style to Indiana Jones. It’s a pretty big departure for me as my previous Cy Reed books have all been quite grounded, with a solid base in science (albeit, speculative science, sometimes). That’s part of the reason why I’m considering spinning this off as a separate series. Anyway, enjoy!

“It’s getting bigger, too,” Jocelyn said. “I’d rather not be here when it gets through.”

“Unfortunately, Sawyer’s guys are holed up in the next room.” He shrugged. “They were at the block when we arrived. We managed to drive them back, but only as far as the statue.”

I furrowed my brow.

“Half of them are posted there,” he continued. “Every time we show our faces, they take a shot at us.”

“Half of them are at the statue?” My furrow hardened into a ridge. “Where’s the other half?”

“In the room after that one.”

“You can see them?” Jocelyn asked.

“Not easily,” he replied. “But yeah, I caught a glimpse of some people trekking that way.”

My eyes widened. “They’re trying to trap us.”

Tairona Cacique: A Cy Reed Visual

Tairona Cacique (Cy Reed Visuals)I found this today in my writing notebook. At the time, I was playing around with doing some more visual, Cy Reed storytelling. Look at all of that smudging! Ahh, that’s what I get for not using a tissue under my hand. Anyway, it’s nice to see it again!

A brief look back at TORRENT

This week’s excerpt comes to you from TORRENT, book #3 in the Cy Reed Adventures. This is still my best-selling book of all-time, I believe. Anyway, it’s fun to look back at how I used to write, versus how I write now. Enjoy!

A bloodcurdling howl rang out. I tightened my grip on my machete. My other hand flew to my shoulder holster.

Transporting my gun to Mexico had proven difficult. But I was glad to have it. Alligators and crocodiles lined the shores of the nearby river. Jaguars, pumas, ocelots, tapirs, and other animals roamed the jungle.

The howl died out. Slowly, I released the pistol. But I kept my machete in front of me.

Picking up the pace, I strode ahead of Miranda. Rows of giant palm trees dotted the landscape, forming a series of massive, endless walls. Saw grass, briars, thorn-covered bushes, and acacias sliced at my arms and legs. Ankle-deep mud sucked at my boots, threatening to pull them right off my feet. I found it amazing Beverly and I had survived our all-too-brief foray through the jungle.

“Stop,” I called out.

Miranda stopped. So did Beverly. Silence and stillness fell over the area.

I aimed my beam at a rusty metal pole. It was awkwardly angled and covered with soil. “It’s over there,” I said. “It looks like an old biplane.”

Cy Reed Progress Report

I’m now on draft #3 of my current Cy Reed book, tentatively entitled, Curse of Eden. I have no idea if that title will stick. Probably not. I tend to pick out the title right at the end of a story, not at the beginning.

So, you can probably guess that this story has something to do with the Garden of Eden. Originally, it started out as a book about the Hanging Gardens of Babylon. I’d planned to incorporate some of the amazing research done by Stephanie Dalley in her book, The Mystery of the Hanging Garden of Babylon: An Elusive World Wonder Traced. But as I ventured deeper into the story, I found my vision of the garden changing until it became the Garden of Eden.

Anyway, I’m roughly a third of the way through this draft. The story is still taking shape on the page, although I think I see where it’s going. I’m hoping to have it finished up by the end of the month!

Cy Reed Prequel becomes a Sequel

For the last few weeks, I’ve been working on a new Cy Reed story. It was to be part of an origins series, one that would describe how Cy Reed got to Chaos in the first place. It started out as an expedition to uncover one of the lost Ancient Wonders of the World and turned into … well, something else.

Regardless, the story continued to come along quite well. But there was a problem. The Cy I was writing about was far less green than I’d imagined. And he was coping with an emotional issue that would’ve put him ahead of where he was in Chaos. And as I was finishing up the second draft, I had an epiphany. It turns out this isn’t a prequel after all. It’s a sequel. To Fury, specifically.

And yet, it still feels … different. I don’t know if I’ll slot this one in as Cy Reed Adventures #6 or continue with my original plan to start a whole new series. I guess I’ll see how it turns out.

So, here’s an excerpt from my Work-in-Progress. It’s raw and not fully edited. But it should give you a good idea of how things are going. Enjoy!

We were positioned behind a couple of medium-sized boulders, lined up in the middle portion of the cavern. I held my pistol loosely in my left hand. My legs were comfortable and I kept up a steady aim at the light. And all the while, a single thought replayed endlessly in my brain.

Does it ever get better?

The past few years had been some of the worst of my life. Which was unfortunate, because they should’ve been some of the best. After all, I’d discovered an important lost treasure and gone public with my story, thus clearing my family’s name. I’d never really sought glory before, but suddenly, it’d been mine for the taking.

Unfortunately, that glory had been short-lived. For in telling the truth about Fort Knox, I’d also caused tremendous embarrassment to then-President Wade Walters. I knew he’d retaliate. I just never realized how far he’d take it.

Infinity Subway Theory

Infinity Subway Theory: A Cy Reed Journal

This week in Cy Reed’s journal, Cy establishes an Infinity Subway Theory. Did the eight missing children disappear into Manhattan’s locked subway tunnels? How? And why?

Infinity Subway Theory

We’re pleased to release our 12th page of Cryptic today. Cryptic is our working title for Cy’s personal journals during the time period encompassed by Chaos. It focuses largely on his side investigation into a mysterious—and deadly—group known as the Infinity. This week’s entry, “Infinity Subway Theory,” is the last of a four-part mini-series. Here’s the first partsecond part, and third part.

“Infinity Subway Theory” contains the final inside page of a flyer Cy found just outside the 51st-53rd Street station complex. Like the other pages, it depicts a character from Captain Jellybones, a popular Internet cartoon series. An unknown person created the flyer in order to call attention to the sudden disappearance of eight children from extremely wealthy Manhattan-based families. In the margins, you can see Cy begin to theorize about how these kids, watched over by so-called “helicopter parents,” disappeared from their respective apartments without a trace. Manhattan’s subway tunnels, closed off at the time due to a labor strike, appears to be an important piece of the puzzle.

As always, enjoy! And if you need to catch up on old entries, make sure to visit the Cy Reed world.

Future Books / Projects

You never know when an idea will come together. Setting specifics aside, two particular slices of history have always intrigued me. One deals with lost technology and a strange mystery of history. The other is an urban legend about a deadly weapon. They seemed perfect for the Cy Reed universe, but I could never figure out how to turn either one into a book. Well, a few days ago something clicked and I started thinking about what would happen if I combined the two slices. Part of the story crystalized in my head and I quickly scribbled down a few notes so I wouldn’t forget it. And that story will be Cy Reed #6, ladies and gentlemen.

In other news, I’ve only written about 1,000 net new words since Thursday’s post. That’s a little misleading though since I also rewrote or cut (mostly cut) some 20,000 words. Status reports are below …

Behemoth (Apex Predator 1): First draft is in progress at 26,421 words. I’ve been cycling back a lot, changing earlier parts of the book to match up with where the story seems to be going. It’s on a better track now, but still not the right one.

Bunker (Apex Predator ?): First draft is paused at 6,090 words.

Collapse (Cy Reed Adventure #5): First draft is finished at 74,535 words.

Infinity Subway Theory