The Divide – What Would You Risk for Freedom?

A few years ago I released a novel about a giant monster: Project Nemesis. While it was far from my first foray into writing about monsters, or even large monsters, it was my first attempt at writing what is known as kaiju (strange beast in Japanese). In the past, the genre was relegated to movies, TV and comic books. With Nemesis, I successfully brought the genre to the one form of storytelling it had yet to crush beneath its massive heel: novels. Thus, the “kaiju thriller” was born and there have since been several novels by other authors released in this fledgling (but growing) sub-genre. Since the release of Nemesis, I have released one kaiju thriller per year, including all five Nemesis books, Apocalypse Machine, Unity and now…The Divide!

If I had to compare it to any of my previous kaiju thrillers, I’d say it’s most like Apocalypse Machine. The story deals with some pretty broad and potent subjects while introducing a new and horrible monster: the Golyat. Trust me, you wouldn’t want to encounter the Golyat in a dark alley…or broad daylight. But some of the people living in New Inglan, who are desperate for the freedom once enjoyed by the people of the United States, are willing to risk everything to find out what, if anything, exists beyond the Divide.

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SUMMARY:

WHEN THE DIVIDE IS CROSSED…

No one remembers how the Divide was created. The miles-deep and miles-wide chasm has existed for hundreds of years, protecting what remains of humanity from the Golyat: a creature whose shadow moves across the horizon at sunset.

Davina, daughter of Jesse, is a shepherd. She spends her days guiding herds of deer through the forests of New Inglan, protecting them from predators, herding them away from the Divide, and ensuring the tribe of Essex has meat when needed. While many shepherds die in their first year-from the elements, from injury, or in the jaws of a wolf-Davina is resilient.

Having just slain a mountain lion, Davina returns to her village to discover a hunting party has been sent out in search of the Modernists, a group fascinated with the past, the technology that once filled the world, and what lies beyond the Divide. To keep the Modernists from reaching the Divide’s far side, and revealing humanity’s presence to the Golyat, the hunters will torture and kill them all. Including Davina’s teenaged son.

Davina strikes out, intending to ensure her son’s death will be quick and without torture. Reaching the island of Boston first, Davina confronts the Modernists and finds herself incapable of taking her son’s life. Captured by the enemies of Essex, she is transported across the Divide, along with her son and the Modernists.

For the first time in five hundred years, humanity steps foot on the Divide’s far side. Stranded with the enemy, Davina must fight to keep them all alive, herding people instead of deer, while uncovering the truth about humanity’s past, and her connection to events that reshaped the world.

…THE GOLYAT WILL FEAST

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Dexter and the Powerpuff Girls in SUMMER CAMP CRUSH (A fan script)

WHAT THE HECK IS THIS?

Many moons ago in the year 2001, I lived in Los Angeles, trying my hand at screenwriting (something I’m still working on today, with just a little more luck–no one buys original screenplays these days!). Part of that effort was writing demo scripts for shows for which I would have enjoyed writing. For me, that was both Dexter’s Lab and The Powerpuff Girls. So I put together a script for a crossover episode called Summer Camp Crush. What follows is that demo script, in its entirety, raw and unedited (there are typos and the formatting didn’t translate to WordPress perfectly). If you’re a fan of either or both shows, I think you’ll enjoy it. I never did anything with this, so you all are the very first people to see this writing from the vault.

 

FADE IN:

ACT I

EXT. TOWNSVILLE – DAY

Townsville looks peaceful and quiet. It’s a nice summer day.

NARRATOR
Ahh, the city of Townsville. Home to
everyone’s favorite little heroes, the
Powerpuff Girls! Yes, the Powerpuff
girls, who are now- Well, say… Where are
those girls? Where do we usually find
them?

EXT. SCHOOL – DAY

The school is empty.

NARRATOR
No, it’s summer. Maybe they’re in the
lab with the professor?

INT. LAB – DAY

The Professor is hard at work. The Powerpuff Girls are
nowhere to be seen.

NARRATOR
Say Professor…

The Professor faces the audience.

PROFESSOR
Yes, how may I help you?

NARRATOR
We, as in the audience and myself, well
we were wondering where the girls are off
to?

PROFESSOR
Why, I just dropped the girls off at
summer camp this morning.

NARRATOR
Summer camp! Of course. It is summer
after all.

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Forbidden Island – Visit for the mystery. Stay for the horror.

 

Every morning, I read global news and science articles, looking for nuggets of weird, unique, and awesome stories. There are thirty tabs open in my phone’s browser, each one of them a story that captured my imagination. Some I save for later. Some get blended into what I’m currently writing. And some inspire entire stories. That’s what happened when I read about North Sentinel Island, which was proclaimed-by the article-to be the most dangerous island in the world. As someone intrigued by dangerous islands (I’ve written about them in the past) I was keen to learn about this real-life island of doom.

The more I read, the more fascinated I became. Not only is North Sentinel Island a very dangerous place to visit, but the native, uncontacted tribe that lives there is mysterious, strange, and violent. In terms of real world inspiration, North Sentinel Island is jet fuel for my imagination. Combining real history, reports of encounters with the locals, and my own nefarious conjurings, I’ve put together a story that is action-packed, strange, and a bit mind bending.

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SEEKING TO CONTACT HUMANITY’S LOST TRIBE…

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Forbidden Island – Preview Chapters!

Forbidden Island is a journey to the world’s most dangerous island (IRL), where what little is known about the stone age natives is strange, mysterious and deadly… Like a certain other Island novel, it’s a blend of the thriller and horror genres based on real history that’s put through the blender that is my imagination. The novel comes out on December 5th, just five days from today, but I wanted to share the opening chapters with you now. I hope you enjoy them, and snag a copy of the book on the 5th of December. MWA HAHAHAHAAAA… Ahem. Thanks. — Jeremy

 

PROLOGUE

 

North Sentinel Island,

The Bay of Bengal, 1981

 

The setting sun made Mike Pastore nervous, not because he feared the coming darkness, but because the wild men preferred it.

The Primrose, a two-hundred-fifty-foot cargo ship out of Hong Kong, had run aground five days earlier, when a monsoon had heaved the ship upon the sharp reefs surrounding the island. Pummeled by relentless twenty foot waves, the vessel had been shoved to within a hundred feet of the sandy beach.

During the first two days, as the rains drifted toward India, the glowing sands looked empty and inviting; the lush jungle beyond promised shade and the thrill of exploration. If not for the still violent waves, the crew would have vacated the floundering vessel, and set up on dry land, to wait for rescue.

But on the third day, when the waves became manageable, they arrived.

Pastore had been on watch as the sun rose, a solitary guardian while the crew slept, ignorant to the danger. As one of three crewmembers who was not Chinese, he got ‘shit duty’ a third of the time.

A shiver ran through Pastore’s body as he remembered the first native he’d seen. The man walked out of the jungle in a squat. His strange position, small stature and dark skin had convinced Pastore that he had discovered some kind of island-dwelling chimpanzee. Lured by intrigue, he had left the wheelhouse and stepped onto the starboard-side main deck, binoculars in hand. The memory was still fresh, and he didn’t so much remember it as relive it in his mind.

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IT’S NOT A TOOMAH (we think) AND WHY I HAVEN’T RESPONDED TO YOUR E-MAIL


As some of you might recall from the post I made a year ago my health has been in a state of upheaval. Last year it presented as a kind of mental breakdown with constant anxiety, extreme depression and frequent panic attacks. While all this was happening, I was told I probably had a brain tumor. Later in the year, an MRI and blood test suggested I did not, in fact, have a brain tumor.

Alas, that didn’t mean there was nothing wrong with me. There was. And is.

Despite testing negatively for a tick-borne disease called Bartonella (that you can also get from cat and dog bites and scratches—I think I got it from wrestling with Kenobi), my symptoms suggested that I had it. While I was being treated for it naturally, using herbs and supplements that usually cure Bartonella, it was also largely ignored because many of the symptoms overlapped with having a brain tumor, including panic attacks, which persisted throughout the year and into the summer.

Flash forward to September. Toward the end of the month, about a week before Robinsonfest, I started getting neuropathic symptoms. At first it felt like severe goosebumps on my thighs, but over the course of a few days, it progressed up my back and onto my head. By the time Robinsonfest happened, it was distracting, but not yet debilitating. That happened a few days after Robinsonfest, when my nerves became so out of whack that I couldn’t stand to be touched. I couldn’t do much more than sit in bed. Even something as simple as a shower became horribly painful.

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