Originally, when the concept rattled around y brain a few years ago, it was going to be the murder of JJ Abrams by J. Michael Straczynski, and Rick Berman would be arrested for it at the end of the novel. If you have no idea who these people are, don't worry, this involves LOTS of inside baseball. Also, William Shatner-- mentioned in the book only as "the Whale"-- in the same room with Chris Pine. Hilarity ensues.
Sean: "What do I have for security?"
"Star Wars or World War II?"
"Star Wars. They're all marines or cops. It's the only reason they can march in file. And hit what they aim at."
Sean cackles. "Exxxcellent. I have an army!"
"We have a hulk."
This premise was never going to happen. This sequel was never going to happen. Why? Think about it for a moment-- It Was Only on Stun! was not the best-received novel I've ever written. Why do a sequel? I have one or two fans of the book who are loudly demanding a sequel, but aside from that.
Anyway, while I was having this discussion with a friend of mine, Margot St. Aubin, she started laughing, and jokingly suggested a crossover with my Sad Puppies Bite Back Universe.
As all of those you were present for the creation of SPBB, making suggestions like that will only get them added.
So, of course, Sean had to be at "WyvernCon" in Atlanta, to "protect" three groups of players in FanDom from each other.
Imagine trying to explain this to Sean.
Let's not even go into Sean Ryan meeting someone who goes by "Tom, the Tank Engine." And don't even get me started on his reaction to Avery the Porpoise, the official spokesperson for Tearful Puppies.
"So first, we have the Tearful Puppies Save the Orphans campaign--"
Sean: "The what?"
"Long story on the name. Anyway, we have Larry, Intergalactic Lord of Hate--"
Sean: "Who's that?"
"Him, over there?"
Sean: "The seven-foot tall teddy bear? Hey, I think I bought a few guns from him."
"Probably. Anyway, you have the Stunning Yet Vile Space Princess and her umbrella of Death--"
Sean: "Darth Leia?"
"Not quite. The Portuguese female over there. The White Mormon Male with a great rack."
Sean: "....Um .... Dude ... She's clearly a woman."
Sean: "There are a lot of those, aren't there?"
"You have no idea. And you have Jessie James."
Sean: "That's an alias, right? Pseudonym?"
"Nope, it's his real name. Don't bring up the old West outlaw. Just don't. Anyway, that's him over there."
Sean: "Is he wearing a kilt?"
"Is that common?"
Sean: "Lemme guess, long story?"
Sean: "And the hot, blue-haired goth chick is...?"
"His wife. She's smarter than all of us put together, and we have some rocket scientists at this con, so don't make jokes."
Sean: "I'd never. So, we have the Sad--"
Sean: "--Puppies, and they're interested in what?"
"Saving the Hubble Awards from their own obscurity and left-wing nutters who have control over it."
Sean: "No one cares about the Academy Awards, and no one's trying to save that from left-wing nutters. Have I heard of this Hubble Award?"
"Oh, sure. Asimov won it. Heinlein won it. I think Ellison won it."
Sean: "Two out of three ain't bad. And the Distressed Puppies are trying to ... what? Make sure other people can play with the Hubble?"
"Basically so that anyone can win an award based off of talent, merit, that sort of thing."
Sean: "Good luck on that. Hell, the Golden Globes have been screwed up since the start, and that's voted on by five guys in the foreign correspondents dinner. So, the people who were begging for my protection are the Bawling Puppies?"
"TEARFUL .... no, those are the Puppy-Kickers."
Sean blinks .... shakes his head ... counts to ten .... "The what-now?"
"We have a few names for them. SMURFS for one. CHUDs for another."
Sean: "Riiiight. SciFi people and their acronyms. Next you're going to try convincing me that and RPG is NOT a rocket propelled grenade."
"Smurfs, what about them? Lefty-looney nutjobs? That's it? Who are those players?"
"Well, you have John Prada -- wrote a Star Trek Fan Fic named Goldshirts, and got a Hubble for it."
Sean: "I thought they were Red Shirts?"
"Not on the Next Generation. Also, you have the guy who invented the Hairballs."
Sean: "Something a cat coughed up?"
"Kind of like the flat cats made by Heinlein. The guy's name is Jerry David."
Sean: "Uh huh. And you said something about another group? A third group?"
"Yes, the Hydrophobic Puppies. They want the Hubbles scrapped, burned to the ground, and start over with something new."
Sean: "Well, if someone told me they were going to burn down the Academy Awards, I would just make sure that George Clooney was still in the building when it went up. And who's in charge of the Rabid--"
"Hydrophobic Puppies! It's a her, actually. She goes by the name Agnes Dei."
Sean blinked: "Riiiigh. Sure. Of course. So, lemme just get this clear. You have the Hubbles, the lefties who own the Hubbles, The Hydrophobic who want to burn the Hubbles, and the Tearful Puppies who want to save the Hubbles from themselves. Is that what you're telling me?"
Sean nods slowly: "And the Hubbles are this great big Sci-fi award? At WyvernCon?"
"Nope. UniversalCon. But they wouldn't allow any Puppies there, so they all thought this would be neutral ground."
Sean looks around the room: "They do realize we're in the South, right? They have guns here, don't they? And the --whadid'ya call them? The smurfs? Thought that this would be neutral ground? Are they smoking many drugs, or only great quantities of one in particular? Because if it's the latter, I need to be on the lookout for if it hits LA anytime soon."
And, of course, I had a few titles in mind.
Goldshirts was one, just because I'm a bit of a smartass.
Cry Havoc, based off of my own blog post of the same name...but that's way too much inside baseball.
The Puppies of War would fit better ... and might even bring in anyone who's following PuppyGate, et al.
But then I considered that the first book was It Was Only On Stun! Therefore, wouldn't it just make more sense to have this become Set To Kill? Of course, someone will have to die, but the first one was a murder mystery, why not this one?
And keep in mind, everything you've read has been cooked up tonight. No, I don't outline all that often, why do you ask?
But yeah, this just goes strange. Sean Ryan meets people who are not real-life authors -- I say they're not real-life authors because they look more like the SPBB authors than anyone in real life. After all, the SPBB versions are already fictional, this would just go the rest of the way.
Obviously, most of the jokes write themselves.
And don't even get me started on what happens when we bring in Middle Earth's Most Wanted Elven Assassin. Who, if you've read both Stun! and The Pius Trilogy, you'd know has stuck around.
Keep in mind, there will not be too much crossover with the Pius books. There would be no Scott Murphy in this one. There won't be German spies or commando priests, or IRA hitmen ... okay, there's the one who's on Sean's payroll. but aside from that, no.
Unless of course, they decide to just butt into the story without asking me. That happens. Sean wasn't even supposed to be in the Pius books, so that tells you exactly how much control I have over these people.
This should be fun. Or deranged. Deranged is good.
As for self-published versus regular publishing ... good question. The covers are cheaper if I do regular publishing. And I think Damnation might be amused. But we'll see.
Step one is, as always, WRITE THE DAMN BOOK.