Welcome to Dark and Fevered Dreams. As my first blog for this site, I wanted to tell you a little about why I created this project and what it will offer in the months and years ahead.
Several years ago, I wrote a blog on my author’s website entitled The Timelessness of Serial Storytelling which celebrated this ancient form of communication. Although many people today equate “serials” to something either from another age or something of inferior quality, the point of my blog is that they don’t have to be either. In fact, if you look around, you’ll probably find serialized stories everywhere. Comic books are probably one of the best and most pervasive examples of serialized storytelling in American culture, but you can easily add in weekly television shows, book series, movie franchises, etc. Even blogging is, in a sense, a serialized form of communication where they writer uses his or her platform to add new information to an existing body of work.
The beauty of serialized storytelling is that it allows a depth, complexity and adaptability to providing information that other, more static forms of communication do not. Which fiction is concerned, this means characters can change, environments can become deeply immersive and storylines can branch and weave in amazing, often unexpected ways.
Over the years, I’ve participated in several large-scale serial storytelling projects. The most recent venture, called Outcast Earth, went on for a full decade and detailed the adventures of a group of fictional paranormal investigators as they traveled the world seeking out the strange and unexplained. Every bit of Outcast Earth was fake, although many of the topics the site addressed were not (Bigfoot, missing persons, haunted places etc.). Still, the site had a sense of authenticity about it through the use of photos and videos which featured friends and family members “playing” the various roles, enhanced by some deceptive Photoshopping and special effects to add in the more supernatural elements. At its height, Outcast Earth was being visited by over a million users every year.
When Outcast Earth ended in 2012, I found that I missed working on a serialized project. I subsequently published my first two young adult novels, His Life Abiding (2013) and The Men in the Trees (2014) — neither of which were serialized. Despite this, I was intrigued by the reactions of some readers. There was a recurring interest in the “stories behind the stories.” Readers wanted to know the history behind the locations I represented. They extrapolated new adventures for my characters or enhanced their back stories. They wanted information that continued to flesh out the book they had enjoyed, if only to keep the experience going after the last sentence had been read. In a sense, they were asking for a serialized experience.
Thus, Dark and Fevered Dreams was born as a truly serialized project. Several times a year, a new novelette (of about 15,000-20,000 words) will be released to expand on the story. The novelettes will be supplemented by this website, which will provide the background material, side stories, world-building and character development to make this a much richer experience. (See ABOUT for additional details on how all this works.)
This site will also act as a reader forum, so I welcome you to ask questions, share ideas or propose theories as to where the story’s headed.
You can also connect with Dark and Fevered Dreams on Facebook and Twitter; or sign up for free email newsletters by clicking the SIGN UP black triangle in the upper right corner for your screen.
Thank you for visiting Dark and Fevered Dreams. I hope you’ll return… over and over again.
Marsh Myers, Author of Dark & Fevered Dreams