• Mark Meier

The first settlements around the red dwarf star of Iseabail have been lost to antiquity. Suffice it to say, the larger city of Tzurel overshadowed anything coming from the backwater farming communities established in the neighboring system.

Records from the monarchy indicate a wealthy, unnamed man brought a colony ship to set up a self-sustaining estate, only to find a number of small “hoop” habitats already existing in close orbit. Though disappointed, that man stayed and his facility was a boon to those holding their habs together with wishes and starlight. He brought a minimum of heavy industry which allowed the others to continue, each hab helping the others as needed.

This colony ship became the first static satellite, or “statite,” which established a coordinate system necessary for effective flight control standards within the star system. Though the Iseabail system itself never grew beyond a small agrarian economy, Iseabail Statite provided enough of a resource base to service the local population.

Raiders and marauders, instead of setting up their own agricultural bases, plundered the existing farms for centuries. After sweeping through on their way to some other system, they left behind death and destruction. Otherwise Iseabail was largely ignored, the residents patching together the carnage to continue on. They, in turn, largely ignored the rest of the galaxy.

During the Kelmun Age, only one of the many Kelmuns came from Iseabail: Jacan. Even he was of no great consequence. All that changed when the first King of Avudel proved a disappointment and the Last of the Kelmuns visited the system and selected another to replace Shaan. Even then it would take another twenty years before King Mika took the throne.

The setting for the story of Neora is in a time relative peace, after the Kelmun Shyla vanquished the Yordanites with the assistance of Admiral Faran. That, though, was a hundred light years toward the Core and not much of an issue for those in Iseabail.

Shortly after the events detailed in Neora, the Mandarites began their own campaign of plunder, bringing to an end the peaceful interlude which is the backdrop for Neora.

  • Mark Meier

I find it somewhat funny what people remember. About a decade ago I tried writing a story that would now fit into my “Purple Crypt” book series. That’s totally forgotten, apparently, by a lot of people. Then again, it wasn’t very good (first drafts never are), nor was it thought out effectively. Issues with the plot were . . . legion. So I stopped, and now what people remember is “Purple Crypt” is like what Someone Else is working on. Funny, but also kind of irritating.

Having expressed that, I’ve written about three beginnings to the novel Neora - A “Purple Crypt” Story, which starts in the year 2680 in my timeline. No doubt I’ll have another beginning soon, because research has made my characterizations questionable. That’s the thing about research, though - every time you learn something new it affects the whole story.

The Amira (Neora’s mother) I have now is kind of a complainer. However, the needs of the character require her to be nice and pleasant, then turn into the complainer. For the time being, however, I need to change that personality. But that means I have to change OTHER characters’ responses to Amira.

Basically, it would be easier to rewrite the whole beginning I’ve already written three times.

That’s the update on Purple Crypt. My other major project, The Brotherhood, is getting a revision to put in more descriptions. I tend to write on the side of brevity, leaving out things like emotions and setting. Now I need to put some paint on the walls and smiles or tears on faces. The closer to the ending I get, the more the story is simply framework. Once that gets done, I’ll turn it over to people to check if the plot holds up. Perhaps I’ll be ready to find an agent by the end of the year, or submit without the benefits an agent can provide.

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