Monday, 9 March 2015

Copper Moon Rising (2010 novel)

I hope to publish two new books this year, but before I do I wanted to talk about my previous books. The first of these is my first novel, the science fiction-fantasy epic Copper Moon Rising. You can buy a copy of this novel at:


The cover for Copper Moon Rising: "Damnation Alley" by Peter Krause

Copper Moon Rising was my first attempt at a novel, and my labours on it proved to be very difficult. The creation of this novel was a stop-start and elongated process. To give you some idea, I started writing it in 1997, and did not finish the published version which is available, until 2010. I started it when I was 18 years old, and eventually finished it when I was 31. It's a science fiction-fantasy novel, and the central premise is familiar: a lost orphan (the main protagonist, as a runaway child who is named Quarry by those who find him, but his real name is Raben) is secretly a prince banished from his rightful place as heir to a kingdom's throne; his uncle is the usurper; and the novel follows the orphan as he grows up and eventually learns the truth of his past; before gaining weird alien powers with which he can fight his enemies. Along the way he must deal with the plots of his jealous stepbrother Vesp; Hugh De Culis, who is an evil baron, lord or earl type figure titled 'The Autocrat', and the mysterious alien forces which seem to be manipulating and supporting both Raben and his uncle.

Originally the idea I had in mind for Copper Moon Rising was for it to be a straight-forward fantasy novel, set in a medieval-style world very similar to authors such as Tolkien, George R R Martin and Raymond Feist. Quarry/Raben's enemies would be wicked witches and wizards, evil magicians and ruthless Kings and Barons. There was also going to be a love triangle involving Raben, Violet and another female character that I eventually wrote out of the novel. Eventually Raben's dilemma became not between two women, but between his love for Violet and his desire to seek his birthright, which is as the rightful King and ruler of the realm.


I decided that the fantasy novel structure I originally conceived was too clich├ęd and predictable, with too many familiar motifs, so I introduced science fiction elements. Suddenly Copper Moon Rising was part of a much bigger scheme, involving other alien worlds and greater conflicts. As Keith Richards once said about rock n'roll bands he didn't rate: "You can see the join", and that's probably true of this novel in certain aspects. My different drafts and several rewrites over many years have left the final version of Copper Moon Rising somewhat uneven in tone and style, and combining serious science fiction and fantasy effectively can often be very difficult. The presence of weird alien creatures inhabiting the same sphere as iron-clad knights in armour and courtly ladies may be disconcerting for readers. The supernatural/telekinetic powers that the characters of Raben and Vesp possess are attributed to alien, futuristic brain surgery rather than the vague earth-magic I'd originally had their mentor Tyrus teaching them in Harry Potter-magician-and-his-apprentices style. For this to make sense, I loosely used the questionable concept of normal humans only using 10% of their brains at any one time, a concept that was also used by Luc Besson's recent film Lucy to explain the creation of a superhuman character. There was a lot of pseudo-science involved in the 'logic' of this novel as an explanation for instances of 'magic' and the supernatural. The character of Zephyr is originally introduced as an android who becomes Raben's sidekick. Eventually he's revealed to be a half-human cyborg, Darth Vader-style...but I don't want to spoil the surprise.

The first edition cover of Copper Moon Rising

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