Visit Page
Skip to content

Blood Runner origin – behind the scenes bonus

Last updated on January 17, 2022

Blood Runner origin – where did this thing come from?

So, funny story – I never meant to write Blood Runner at all. Did I mention that before? And due to that, as I’m now working to turn it into a series (say what?!), I was forced to analyse the driving force of the story and its origin, so I could carry it forward. Getting a handle on all the unplanned threads I could pick up was paramount, too. Luckily, not as hard as I thought. In writing that single story, me being me, I created an entire universe in my head to play in, so the possibilities were numerous. I feel like I set up the series while I wrote that first story though I had no conscious intention of expanding it at the time. There’s been so many tiny things I found that I was like “Hey, thanks past me!”

It started at the library poring over books on the fertile crescent and antediluvian mythology for another story. At that time, I also flirted with the idea of bringing my writing out of the shadows after a couple of decades of working to make other writers look good. Finally. Thinking ahead to supporting the kids as a novelist only, I tested advice on being more prolific.

mapping out story motivationMostly? I wanted to be sure I could, in fact, generate consistent income. Kids aren’t cheap, after all. I wrote all kinds of pieces in practice using a variety of “tricks” meant to help with continuous productivity, building on what I learned as a commercial copywriter. Not all of them worked for me, but you gotta try stuff.

It was scary thinking about having no outside income, but exciting, too. It was the next step beyond freelancing. Again, me being me, I never do anything without analysing the holy shit out of it first, though, so I stole time practicing fast writing techniques from my freelance time and worked an outside job while being a single parent. I needed to get my ducks in a row and plan ahead to make it work and it would take time.

And then I was derailed.

In the middle of strategising, I learned I had a growing cataract in my right eye. They said it was possible to remove it, though doing that would make me fully blind in that eye. What a punch in the gut. Oh, and I was losing vision in the other eye. Lovely.

Struggling with how to keep doing the only thing that made me feel human and fed my soul, I stressed over how it would impact my ability to support my household. And the distraction really sucked my creativity. A LOT. If you asked me, I’d tell you it didn’t make much of an impact and I had a handle on it, but it really did. I did NOT have a good handle on it. I never told anyone, but I felt wholly unsettled, like falling. Nothing would be the same in a short time and I had to change how I did everything. I made sure I took the kids out even more than I had in the past, too. Not only to spend more time with them, but for myself. To see as many things as I could while I still could. Colours were already washing-out and I had a big void in my field of vision.

I felt I was on a timer, counting down seconds to the world going dark.

Eventually? I sucked it up and learned to deal after some denial and stamping my feet.


After most of a year, I calmed down

I focused on the story I did the original research for and combined that with one of the fast writing tricks. And couldn’t write it. Normally, I have an entire story plotted out in my head before I write anything and this trick involved using a couple of random nouns and a verb to write your first paragraph. It’s supposed to get you over the hump of the dreaded first paragraph when you don’t have an idea. But I already had an idea and thought the two techniques cancelled each other out. I gave that a think and was oddly compelled to focus on more research. This time, into the really early mythology of Sumer. I couldn’t leave it alone. As sometimes happens, I must have picked up on something that my brain was working on in the background and it needed more detail.

Then I tried again.

This time, I decided to try the same fast writing trick without thinking about any of the info I had in my head. No direction, no notes, no plan. Wholly foreign to me, I didn’t think it would work. I spun the wheel and got two nouns and a verb.

And wrote not only the first paragraph, but the first chapter of Blood Runner in under an hour.

hiding from my own story motivationAside from being weirdly unsettling having no story motivation to work off, for whatever reason, I wrote it in the first person. Something else I never do. Hey, I’m an introvert and don’t like being in the centre of anything. I freaked myself out that it came out so easily.

By that point, I knew the whole story, so was back to having a mental outline and things settled down again. But somewhere in my head? I know now all that research mashed together with the crap going on in my life. Without planning it, it was the recipe for the Blood Runner origin and drove the mostly-contained anger in Kurshram’s personality. I belted out the first five chapters and only at that point stepped back to see what I had.

It was surprisingly cohesive.

Then I took another look at the mythology and stitched the myth together that was the premise for the story. I finished the rest in crazy fast time. Weeks.

Through the first book, once I got into it, the whole thousands-of-years-old myth morphed into its own separate engine driving character motivations, of course. But that original unsettledness, the feeling of being on a timer and simmering anger underneath Kurshram’s character? Yeah… I didn’t think so at the time, but that was all me, pissed-off about losing my vision. Go figure.

So, fair question – now several years past that simmering anger, will that affect Kurshram’s character in new stories? Naw. He evolves quite a lot over the course of the first book. And since he’s apparently more of me than I might care to admit, it’s not difficult to keep his personality intact even while it evolves. I’m pretty certain fans of the first story will accept him in his current and future evolving forms. Fingers crossed. You can let me know.

Interested in Book 2 of the Blood Runner series? See my homepage for announcements about the release of Sons of Enki, Book 2 in the series.

Recent Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.