Echo, Chapter 2: https://dirtyscifibuddha.com/echo-chapter-2/
Author’s Notes: I’m going to allay this fear right away. Yes, within the sample chapters, there will be an epic a** beating. You will stand and cheer (I hope!) as Atriya smashes the f*** out of some obnoxious idiots. Ok, there’s a lot going on in this one, especially under the surface. The dynamic change here is that basically Atriya goes from being passively bothered by his problems to actually deciding to try and fix them. His training equipment, the state of his home-they are reflective of him being stuck in a state of stagnancy. I’ve put a good bit of focus on the rotten pomegranate as a metaphor for Hell (or Hades, to be nitpicky about it)…I’m sure you all know about Persephone. Yes, I realize I stretch a little for the art here (who keeps pomegranates in their fridge? Not me) but I felt it was warranted by the thematic backing. When he sees and is disgusted by, and also disposes of the rotten fruit it signifies that he recognizes the need for change on a deeper level.
His weapons-Here I start opening the setting a bit (along with the holo pad) I don’t want to deluge you guys with fancy technology and exotic culture because then it starts to lose its meaning, especially if it isn’t tied to theme. His weapons are used to illustrate his eccentricity, his lack of belonging.
Basic things such as the shower and the book passage are used to illustrate his discomfort with everyday creature comforts; the guy can’t relax cleaning off or while he tries to study or entertain himself.
Verus/martial arts-In the military, I never personally encountered women that inspired me at the “badass” level. Don’t get me wrong, I believe they are out there. All you got to do is crack open history books and you can read about tons of women warriors that didn’t just outperform men but rose to the top of their field. Hopefully, as women are allowed to serve in combat, we will get to see more women “meat-eaters.” Women that would have inspired the hell out of my younger, testosterone-addled self. But seeing as writing is where we can inject our hopes and dreams, why not have an ultimate warrior-sage that happens to be a woman? That’s why I wrote in Verus. I tried for awhile to think of a good name for Verus because I’m a big fan of significant names. Even Atriya’s name ties into a reveal/payoff way down the line. After a lot of combing, I decided on Verus. A little on the nose, I know. The martial arts are also indicative of Atriya’s character.
The Takuan reference-Huge easter egg that pays off way way down the line. Hundreds of pages down the line. Any of you who are fans of Samurai culture will like it (I think!)
I realize I got a little Stephen King-esque describing the fruit in the last few paragraphs, but once again, I like to stretch a little bit for the art if it makes sense and it’s not a crazy reach. Hope the use of “retard” doesn’t offend anybody.
Okay, I think I’ve covered everything. I plan to release chapter 3 two weeks from now on July 15. Thanks for reading!