Hi everyone, long time no talk.
Over the past few weeks, my will to write has returned to me, and we are back in the game. I did start this newer version of the web novel back in January, so I’m certainly a lot further behind than I want to be. The delays in chapters are mainly contributed to mental health-related issues that have been amplified by everything happening this year. I can say they’re definitely still affecting me, but at least I’m making progress once more.
The chapters are being released weekly, with one new chapter for everyone. On Patreon, I now have it so we are two chapters ahead of everywhere else, which a new chapter posted there weekly as well. If you’re caught up with the story, and that interests you, then two bucks a month will grant you access. It is greatly appreciated if you do so, but as I’ve stressed in the past, simply reading the series is fantastic support on its own.
Don’t be shy about asking questions, by the way. If something in the story confuses the hell out of you, ask. I’ll answer as long as we don’t dive into spoiler territory. That is the thing though: there are loads of things that won’t make sense right away. Like what I’m doing with this new version involving Brandon *recent chapter spoilers* and his strange “alter ego” that has taken him over. It’s a new idea I have, yet it will all lead to the overall plot surrounding him that I’ve had all along. It will make sense in the long-run, just please be patient with it, just like you would with other points of the story.
I’ll admit it right now. One of my pet peeves is people who are not patient. In general, but also with writing. As this is a series that releases by the chapter, not everything is going to be covered right away. There’s a lot of content overall that needs to be covered, so it’ll take time. So, if you ask a question with the clear intent of “just tell us what the hell is happening” then it’ll probably be ignored. Genuine innocent curiosity, however, will loop back to what I discussed above: I’ll definitely answer you as long as we don’t get into spoiler territory.
I think I mentioned this on Royal Road, but this version of the web novel takes the comedy aspect of the series a lot more seriously. Comedy has been a thing with Phantonics since the beginning, so I figured that I would officially make it into a core part of what makes up the Phantonics universe. So, whacky antics will now be a more common part of the story. There are moments that will be quite stressful to read in the future, so a good balance of humor will be needed to help the reader not get too sad. Timing for this humor is something I’ve been working on; mainly involving Brandon. I hope to keep at it and make the “interlude” sections of the story in between arcs a lot more entertaining.
Speaking of, I’m not sure if I want to start doing interlude specific chapters. I’m still thinking about how I’d go about doing those. One thing I am heavily considering is beginning short stories of alternate “what-if” scenarios that could happen. I’d probably just call it “Phantonics Alternate” or something simple like that. Here, I’ll give away an idea for one: it would be called “Phantonics Alternate: Ash” and be a what-if scenario if Faith and Emma weren’t saved from the fire and they both died. It would be quite dark, so—naturally—it would be fun to write. Also, taking into consideration the humor thing, another side story thing I’d consider is one strictly for that kind of thing, that detaches itself quite far from the normal story. Maybe call it “Phantonics Fool” or something like that—idk I just pulled that title out of my ass. Right before this sentence that I’m writing right now, I took a small breather for a moment and noticed I had typed exactly 666 words, so that’s fun. Thought I’d mention it, just cause.
Side story-wise, Phantonics Sakura is still one that I will do whenever we reach 10 supporters on Patreon. Still only at one at the moment (shoutout to Novagirl93 for the support you’ve given so far) so, for those of you who do want to go that extra mile, that will be one of your (eventual) rewards. If you want to see Alexander Strauss in his own story (readers of the previous web novel will know him quite well—he’s a fan favorite from the few people I’ve talked to) then tell your friends! And for you lovely folks that read the story normally, rest assured. It will be released to the public upon completion. I mention on Patreon that it will be released in chapters, much like the normal story, specifically on there. Random note: I’m pretty sure the side story for Faith will be called “Phantonics Flare” and I have a good idea as to where I want to place it in the timeline. It’s… quite far off, however. We’ll deal with that once we get to that point. Random note 2: Alexander’s side story is called “Phantonics Sakura” due to his Psycho Matter matching the color of cherry blossoms—I know, creative. It has nothing to do with that one person from that one series about ninjas.
I think I’m going to make chapters a bit longer again so that more content is released weekly. When this version started, I wanted chapters to be shorter so that people could sink into the story easier and not be as overwhelmed. It was also to help me keep up with a schedule, but we all know how that went. I’m going to keep it up as long as I can, and we can hopefully start to see some growth in the series as we get through this second half of the year (how is 2020 already halfway over wtf). The current Crimson Mine Arc should be done by the end of July and the arc after that will hopefully be done by the fall. That will get us through Book 1, perhaps around 2 years after I started the original web novel (October 27, 2018 will always be considered Phantonics’ birthday, btw). I’m doing a really rough estimate here (especially considering how I am) and I’m guessing Book 2 will go into 2021. If I do well enough, maybe we can reach the territory of new new content like… a year or so from now? It’s kind of rough to type that out, but who knows? I could pull off something crazy and write much more before then. It all depends.
I should clarify, as I said before, there’s plenty of new content before we reach that point. The Crimson Mine Arc currently in progress is completely new, surrounding that two chapter fight with Derek in the previous version. It’s much more expanded than before, taking place in an entirely different setting. Fun fact: this mine was actually something from the original Phantonics that I wrote a decade ago. It’s kind of nice to go back to it when I’m actually somewhat competent with writing (somewhat). The following arc will have extra content expanding on that fight with Carl in the woods. Book 2’s first arc will be roughly the same (done better, though—I honestly did not care too much for how I wrote that), then there will be another completely new arc, followed by the arc the last version left off on. That one will be similar, with some differences with how some of the fights play out. Once we get past the point of the Chris fight and the situation that was going on with Emma, we’ll be in new territory. I’ve mentioned this before, but I, unfortunately, did pull the plug right before the super crazy stuff went down. It motivates me to get back to that point, but I know I have to take it slow. Or, just be careful with my writing. If I want to go off with writing, I certainly can if I’m in the right mindset. This simple update, for example, is WAY longer than I thought it would be. It’s a lot of rambling, but I’ve felt like I’ve covered some good points. Not only for you guys to read, but for me to think about.
Anyway, I think I’ll end it here, on that note. If you actually read through this entire thing, bless your soul. This update alone is about an average length of a chapter, and it took me about an hour to write (that does count the small breaks though). So, can I keep this up and work on an actual chapter right now? Or will I go to bed? Both sound tempting. We shall see.