So, I got another confirmation of my suspicion today. Completely unprompted, my sister (who asked if she could read it a long time ago) asked me if I had done any more work on the book I was writing. I stopped ant tried to think of work I had done on my cookbook and then realized that that wasn't what she was asking about. *sighs* there goes my dreams of using this to fuel my financial well being for the moment. I was really hopeful too since I am having a hard time writing short stories. (I just can't seem to come up with decent story ideas of the shortish variety. Well, I guess there are a couple of fragments that may work out yet.) Funny that the only short story idea that has really worked out for me (with the exception of one that I'm stuck trying to figure out how to end it so it works with the beginning) barely even has characters and the characters who are there, except for the narrator, never actually speak.

I want to do some Samuel Prior stories, but I'm stuck on both of the ones that I am working on right now. The first one I started is in the middle of his story line, and I got stuck because I knew the basic shape of his history but couldn't get key pieces to work out while still progressing with the plot, so I started the second Samuel Prior story, the earliest one I intend to write. I guess this makes way more sense to me than it does to anyone else. A little history.

I've got a SF setting I am still working on, something that runs from the day after tomorrow until the end of time (well, my timeline only runs a few thousand years from now, but still...) One of the major themes is that while History is contingent and it can hinge on the actions of individuals, just being a superior person in the right place at the right time is not always enough. Through out the setting, I plan on using the Prior family. The Priors will have become influential through the actions of their founder, and I plan on having them figure in many of the key points of human history. Of course as humanity expands to the planets of our solar system and then to the stars, the best and most daring of the Priors will, in accordance with the blessing/curse of their name, expand as well. Many of the Prior children will take advantage of the family's emphasis on physical and intellectual training and be fairly highly skilled adults.
Samuel is fairly early in the family's history. Born before humanity has headed to the stars, Samuel is one of the youngest to take part in the war against an expansionistic theocracy that began in the Belt. The gruesome death of his fiancee at the hands of the mysogenic theocracy inspires a slight career change. Instead of becomming a Naval officer in the United Nations Space Forces, he switches tracks to their intelligence branch, specifically as an assasin. He carries out a private vendetta in his role as assaasin and kills several of the most important leaders of the Army of the Prophet. At the same time he loses a lot of his humanity. After the war, he continues working for the UN's intel division, though not as an assasin. Having avenged his love's death, he now has to deal with what he has become. The earliest story will begin a decade after the war while he is still sorting through the confict that killing so many people (including innocents in several occasions where he destroyed entire spacestations to kill one person.) Though I don't want it to be the actual focus of the plot, much of the conflict in the Samuel Prior stories should be him coming to grips and overcomming the monster that he had become. This entire series of stories within this setting will be about the redemption of Samuel Prior. The first story in the series contains some scenes that have been difficult for me to write, mostly because they are a little darker than I am usually comfortable with working in, and that has been a lot of why I haven't finished it yet. (Other stories in the setting will be more lighthearted than that. In fact, the only story I am actually done with is a fairly lighthearted story about hang gliding in the launch tube of an magnetic catapult, and focuses on the thrill of flight.)

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