This past weekend I wrote the last Vaquel story for 2015. It will conclude the 5th year of writing stories for my perverse space explorer which makes her the longest running series I have written. I may have written other characters off and on over a period of years but Vaquel has had a new story at least once a month.
This year I tried something new where I had one enemy, Voice, for an entire year. In Buffy fandom terms, Voice was my Big Bad and I was fond of the extra-dimensional mass-murdering psychopath. He destroyed worlds because it amused him and he destroyed so many that he had no more left to play with. There is a parable about conservation, greed and perhaps not-mass-murdering in there somewhere.
Once you have one Big Bad in your series, there is an expectation to have another. I will not be having a Big Bad next year. The problem with continuous Big Bads is that as soon as you have two of them, comparisons are made. One is the real Big Bad while the other becomes the Not as Interesting Big Bad. Besides, Voice was special and I think it makes him more special if he is rare.
In 2014, I had a theme where Vaquel encountered several races that were neighbors. It was a small tribute to science fiction that dealt with politics and wars. Before that, I think I had a partial theme where Vaquel went a long time without encountering anyone and I played with loneliness. Before that, I think I was just winging it.
I’m not sure what 2016 will bring. Having a theme helps set the tone when I release these stories as ebooks. After a year of Voice, I am eager to write stories where Vaquel actually talks to someone face to face or genital to genital instead of just talking to inside her head. Star Wars is coming out soon and part of me is tempted to do a year long satire of a rebel alliance and an evil empire but I am not sold on it. I like parodies but I think they work best in small doses.
Whatever I decide on, I want to thank the reader for joining me on this twenty year mission. We have completed the first five years together and I think we have had some fun. We’re only at the 1/4 mark and we still have a lot of space to explore and fuck.