Hey, peeps. Blackbird here. So, I’m currently working on 3.04 as I write this, but since May 1st was the second anniversary of this web serial, I figured I should write something out. It’s been a wild ride. I am, heh, not very used to being proud of the things I do. I don’t see myself as talented on the same level as most of my friends, or even my partner, but I accept that people enjoy what I do. And I love the process of writing. I don’t think in terms of whether I’m doing something particularly amazing as much as in terms of whether I’m creating something enjoyable and whether I’m having fun with the process.
I’ve talked about how the past year or so has been stressful and how much that stress affected my writing, but Shadows Rise kept me going through all of that stress… and my current stresses. It didn’t add to it. No matter how crappy things have been and, in some ways, still are in the world, I never stopped enjoying this. I love knowing that people want to read it and even though our numbers are small compared to most… Our growth these past two years feels immense to me. We’ve surpassed 10k reads across all of our platforms, we have an active Discord community of friends and patrons, we met a Patreon goal thanks to those friends and patrons… And that’s huge to us. It’s incredible. I am extremely grateful, and incredibly proud of us, for it.
So, yeah, happy (late) birthday, Shadows Rise. May we continue on towards… Mutual destruction, maybe? Is that how you folks think this is gonna end? I know how it ends, and I can tell you it’s not happy, but tragedy comes in many, many flavors, doesn’t it? : )
With that in mind, I do have some things to talk about in regards to the latest chapter and Plotstains’ latest editorial, so go check those out if you haven’t and then come back so we can talk about it.
All done? Cool. Don’t blame me for spoilers if you haven’t.
In Plotstains’ post he talked about foils and about how Lena and the Wolf Hunters share a common trait of having a loved one killed by the Wolfpack. Now, he called this an unintentional foil and, yes, yes it is. It’s not incorrect to interpret it that way, however it’s not something I had in mind when writing her backstory. And that’s a wonderful thing in my eyes. Readers can look at your characters and see things about them that weren’t your intention or your vision and still be correct.
If I wanted, I could dissect Lena’s relationship with the Alpha, her feelings towards Lucille; her birth mother, and I could explain why this foil wasn’t my vision, but Lena is a character that benefits immensely from me never explaining things. She’s not very straightforward and I know that’s one of the aspects of her personality that drives Plotstains nuts sometimes (for reasons), but I know she’s also not that hard to figure out if you pay close attention. I don’t need to explain how she feels about this, because I’ve already written it out. And I like to think someone, at some point, is going to be observant enough, or obsessive enough, to read in between every line and see that. But if no one does that’s fine, because I think if this editorial proved anything, it proved that you can look way too deeply into this character, or not at all, because as a whole, she still fits the themes of this story perfectly. All the angles are correct and ultimately it doesn’t matter which one you choose.
Was that too cryptic? Probably. Get used to it. 😛
Are there intentional foils in Shadows Rise? Yes. And maybe when everything is said and done (and I mean everything) we can talk about those with some depth, because I love that stuff. Right now though? Too soon. Way too soon. There’s so much left to happen just in this Arc alone. We’re only three chapters in.
Last, but not least… I posted a little poll at the end of last chapter and it seems that across all our posting platforms people were in agreement that Lena would beat Sarah in a race and yes, but maybe not. She absolutely can, but whether she would win this one considering it’s Sarah’s birthday… Hmmm… Probably not. Even if it meant admitting she’s ‘wrong’ and having Sarah act smug over it, I’m pretty sure Lena would just let her have it. I mean, come on, people. Lol
I think that’s it for this Author’s Notes. Thank you for sticking with us for the past two years if you’ve been here from the start. Welcome, if you’ve just recently started reading. It doesn’t matter how or when you joined us in this journey, we’re just happy to have you with us.
I’ll see you folks on the 16th when 3.04 comes out. And who knows? Maybe we’ll have much more to talk about soon.