Avalon and the Creative Process

(Notes that will point to the introduction for the book of Avalon, Season 1)

It was somewhere in early 2010 when I went wandering through the universe in search of a storyline… And I thought to start at the beginning.

But the beginning of time doesn’t do anything for me.  I mean, who was there other than God or no one depending you your point of view?  And all of those ages and ages it took just to form the sun and the earth, I mean, what, write about aliens?  I know, have the story end with them crashing on the newly formed planet and write: “The End… The Beginning”  Yawn.

The beginning of life?  Boring.  Trilobites forever!

The beginning of intelligent life?.. maybe.  There were elder races: Australopithecine, Homo Habilus, Homo Erectus, Cro-Mangon, Neanderthal.  Something might be done there, and they do turn up now and then in my stories.  In fact, I once took a journey to an Elder dominated world in a book I wrote called Killers in Eden.  But no, not here… Hmm…

So, how about the beginning of Homo Sapiens?   That might be worth a story, but here all you really have are God and the first Adam, or something crawling up out of the slime depending again on your perspective.  And then it was hundreds of thousands, even millions of years before anything “happened.”  How Neolithic can you get?

So how about the beginning of history, I thought, and concluded that now we are getting somewhere!  In my writer’s universe, real history began around 4500 BC.  But then I hesitated, because that is where I always seem to end up.  The beginning of history. 

I mean, I have this character called the Kairos (an ancient Greek word for “event time”).  He (or she) has lived 120 lifetimes up to the present life, a male named Glen (the Storyteller), the 121st life of the Kairos.   Often called the Traveler in Time or the Watcher over History, there are plenty of stories to tell and several involve Glen, including The Princess & The Storyteller, Crossing the Wires and Trading Places (all books whose names will undoubtedly be changed if they should ever see print). In fact, at that moment in 2010 I was finishing a collection of stories, within a single, larger story, about some of the Kairos’ adventures in Glen’s lifetime which I called Invasion of Memories.  It details Glen and the so-called Men in Black repelling an alien invasion.  Along the way, Glen tells a number of stories of adventures he had earlier in his life.   But here, I really wanted to do something different.

I thought about the children of the Kairos, like what if they got wrapped up in an adventure in Avalon – the ethereal home of the Kairos, full of light and dark elves and dwarfs and all.  But then, I already explored that avenue in The Golden Door where the ancient goddess Ashtoreth comes roaring out of hiding, captures Avalon and causes the Kairos to fall into a fevered illness.  He hovers between life and death and only his children have a hope of rescuing him.  Unfortunately, until then they had no idea their father had a secret identity or that Avalon, his natural home in the Second Heavens, existed – much less that it was a place so full of magic and wonders.  A good story, but done…

I cannot imagine where to go with that story, unless the door drags them off into time and space… which it may do someday. 

Then I remembered Ashtoreth’s fascination with the Heart of Time.  The Heart was created at the beginning of History while Angel watched and the Kairos (Alice) and the old god Chronos held hands.  The Heart is a great crystal that beats with light and holds a record of everything that ever happened in history.  Ashtoreth wanted to change history, you see, to make it come out more to her liking, and that was another reason to stop her, but then…

Well, I was thinking, what if there were time gates of a sort?  They would have to be associated with the many lifetimes of the Kairos in one way or another; but what if a person could move through time via the gates?  Hmm.  And what if those gates could only be accessed through the Heart of Time?  Hmm.  Of course, the gates should only be accessible to people out of their natural time to prevent the innocent from stumbling across them…

In Invasion of Memories I had already determined that both Lincoln and his wife (a former elf) were missing – though I was not sure where I was going with that.  I determined Lincoln would be found in space, but Alexis?  It would be a simple thing to imagine Alexis’ elf father kidnapped her for fear she was getting too old and likely soon to die.  He might have snuck into the chamber housing the Heart of Time and escaped into history, dragging his daughter along.  So he goes back to the beginning of history in an attempt to escape altogether.  So the Kairos follows, making the time jump to the beginning through the Heart… 

Of course, to keep in character, the Kairos should have to sacrifice himself in some way to save Alexis, and that would leave the crew to travel home the slow way – by way of the time gates.  This would work with the right mix of people.  Let’s see: Lincoln and Alexis, and I suppose her father Mingus.  As Associate Director of the Men in Black, Lockhart would have to go and keep an eye on Lincoln, and that means Mary Riley, who everyone calls Boston, would be there as Lockhart’s right hand.  To keep Mingus under control we need someone from the history department on Avalon, like Doctor Procter, and maybe throw in Mingus’ son – Alexis’ elf brother, Roland.  That is seven and more than enough for a television show… but given the journey I think the Kairos would be sure they have the help they need:  Two marines should do it: one rough and ready commander-commando and a woman with the archeological, anthropological and intellectual capacity to handle a 6500 year journey.  Hmm…

Avalon the series is a television series in written form.  Anyone who wants to make it a television series in television form, give me a call.  In the meantime, I am having too much fun writing out these stories.  I have only one general rule: that anyone reading a story from – for example – the middle of season three should fairly quickly pick up on what is going on and basically how it all works.  Of course, reading them in order will enhance the experience, but I hate accidentally picking up book two of some trilogy and being totally lost.  Especially for a TV show, a person ought to be able to come in the middle and still get a good story.

I hope you enjoy reading the Avalon stories as much as I have enjoyed writing the series.

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