samuel x. brase likes to write

Foundation: The End of the Story, pt. 3

Posted in novel planning by Sam X. on 1 May 2009

If I’m going to go the “different realities” ending, I need to figure out the different strands that be left diffuse upon conclusion. The destruction of the universe is an easy ending, the stakes are automatically high. But if the universe isn’t being destroyed, I need to make sure my stakes are high enough.

Is it bad that I’m this lost with the end of my novel? I have such a clear vision of the world of the story, of the things I want to tell, but when it comes to the final payoff, I feel so confused. I guess that’s at least partly because I know it has to be good; it has to inspire replayability, as it were.

Okay. How do I want to leave this galaxy? Do I want the Doveirons to still be in charge? No, they should be out of power. Do I want any other house to be in charge? No, I want the “house” system removed. That’s endgame number one, a fundamental change in the government and economy. No more monopoly by a handful of elite houses. This is good, I have something finally. Character’s endings will rely on circumstance, I’m not even going to begin to arc those out yet.

Next. Do I want the invaders to win their war? No. But I don’t want them wiped out; perhaps they establish a colony in our galaxy. Are they aliens? Or humans? I wanted to make them human until Battlestar kind of ruined that idea. It might be more pragmatic if they’re aliens. The symbolism is a bit easier. So okay, they’ll be aliens. Not grotesque but whatever. Perhaps they’re a collective of different aliens?

Hmmmm. That’s interesting. A little Federation-y, but I could make it different enough…. I like this, I think I want to use this idea. One of the principal mysteries of the novel could be where this invading force came from and why they’re invading. For a long time we’ll assume they’re simply an aggressive conquering force. But eventually we’ll learn that they banded together after their own galaxies began crumbling. Their method of conquering is an attempt to extract the strongest and most resourceful people into their herd, so once the current galaxy they’re in does fall, the best people from that galaxy come with them and they move on, finding a new galaxy that is at risk of falling to… dark matter, or something like that. So one of the big revelations of the novel is the invading force’s true purpose; this reveals the endgame mystery box, that the human’s galaxy is at risk of collapsing.

Sub-plot note: It would be interesting if one small group of our main characters sides early with the invading force. We won’t know it at the time, but this group who joins them has been told their true purpose. We think this group has turned “bad” but late in the game we find out they’ve been “good” all along.

Sub-plot note: I like the idea of one help of the invading force staying in our galaxy once it is stabilized, and one half leaving to ‘help’ other galaxies.

That’s two good end points resolved. For now, until I waffle again. Whatever, it’s progress! I hope. I just wrote out a basic arc for the whole plot, and it looks good as a rough outline, though I’m concerned about the lack of presence both the dead houses (Sandmason and Evremond) have. That’ll need to be fixed.

And what will happen to the Sandmasons and Evremonds? Obviously their houses don’t hold any official power, so the dissolution of the house system doesn’t really affect them. It might be nice if Vizol & Jackson join the force who will go to other galaxies… with a better plan than culling the weak, of course.


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