*Cracks knuckles and leans back in chair like a boss*
It's done! I just completed the first draft of my YA psychological horror novel, The Zero Maker.
It sits at 60k, and with the revisions I have in mind (adding one scene and taking out another), it could scoot to 65k, depending on how it works out.
Writing about a demonic computer virus that demands you spread--or else!--has been one of my favorite stories to work with. For one, my character, like myself, is gender-fluid. For two, I'm a techie (I work in a technology center), so this was easy to write. It poured out of me, and I had so much fun writing it.
I got to toss in some references from my favorite video games, and did not hold back with my sarcastic assholeness. (How's that for a word?). I tried to balance the horror with humor, but not in a way that made my work seem satirical. Basically, I wanted it to be serious at times and light hearted in others.
Well, that's what I was shooting for.
I did have fun with the project, more so than any of my others. I just finished a rather serious novel a year ago about racism, love, hate, and acceptance. It didn't have a happy ending, so moving on to something like The Zero Maker was a breath of fresh air. (Not that I don't like writing serious, heart-wrenching things).
The research for this novel was pretty freaking awesome. I wanted this story to sort of be like a Creepypasta--you know, those internet based stories teens are absolutely obsessed with? Creepypastas are huge in teen pop culture, and to tell you the truth, they are utterly terrifying. Don't believe me? Try reading Why Babies Are Born Screaming, or One-Man Hide and Seek.
(One-Man Hide and Seek is pretty freaking terrifying. I couldn't seep for days after trying the ritual. Don't do it. It's really not worth it. Even if it's a barrel of crap, you freak yourself out).
I think, for the most part, I was successful. I got to test computer viruses, learn their behaviors, and apply them to The Zero Maker, also known as zeromaker.exe. (I can hear the gasps. They were tested on virtual machines--it's completely safe).
What viruses do I compare zermomaker.exe to? Probably Gruel or Apparition (Virus.Win16.Apparition). Gruel because it's nasty and devastates a person's computer, and Apparition because it's a bit creepy and even comes with a control center. I'm serious. The creator made the virus with a freaking control center, and you can decide for yourself what files you want the virus to infect. "Infect Calculator?" "Sure, why not!"
If you try to infect a file that's already been infected with Apparition, it will literally say: "File is already infected. I WANNA new file to infect!" I'm not even kidding--verbatim. (And there is also a handy-dandy self-destruct button to go along with it). It you press the self-destruct button, it kills itself and wipes away all traces of it ever being there. Sort of like zeromaker.exe.
So out of all of my projects, this has been the easiest one to write. (I mean, nothing is easy, but it happened so freaking fast that it made my head spin). My other novels took me about a year, and this one took me like five to six months. (I could have done it faster--way faster, but between two jobs and full time college, I consider that pretty fast).
So I am super happy and pumped. And I am really excited to start editing. Then, after that, I get to query it--something I really wasn't planning on doing, as this was a fun side project to keep me busy while querying Ashes on Brady Street. But it grew... and grew. And now it won't leave my brain.
But I guess that's a good thing considering I love it so much.