Beyond the Gates of Övrigmark is coming up on its second anniversary at JukePop Serials. It was accepted for publication at the site on May 14th, 2013. While I’ve had a marvelous time writing the story and sharing it chapter by chapter with readers, I feel it’s time to wrap up the story and bring it to its triumphant conclusion.

The story is up to chapter thirty-six on JukePop, but I’ve written a detailed outline all the way to the end, and chapter thirty-seven is ready to be uploaded. Barring any last minute changes (or uncooperative characters), there will be forty-one chapters in all. My plan is to have the remaining chapters written and uploaded before the anniversary rolls around, with the final chapter going live on the day of the anniversary. I have no desire to stretch out the chapter releases any further to remain eligible for JukePop’s top thirty. As it is, this story has only made it in once, and I’d much rather give my loyal readers the payoff they deserve.

I’m truly appreciative of those who have followed the story from the beginning and have offered their support and encouragement. It is one of the main reasons I continue to write (that and all of the voices in my head). One day, when I manage to edit the story as a cohesive whole and publish it as a novel, I’ll send signed copies to those original fans. Don’t get too excited though, that day will likely be quite some time off. Not because I don’t love the world of Övrigmark (trust me, it is my most beloved creation, with the exception of my two lovely daughters, and truth be told that was a joint effort), rather, I really need to get serious about finishing book two of the Protectors series. Ana Eloise still has a world (or maybe two) of adventure ahead of her, and she’s been getting increasingly insistent that I get back to work on her story.

Beyond the follow up to The Sixth Seal, I have a really great idea for a dystopian mystery series set in a future North America where Canada has stepped in to take control of the United States and bring back some semblance of order over the recently ravaged country. It will feature a quirky and conflicted Detective Superintendent as well as his outspoken and strong-willed junior detective fresh out of the academy. I’ve already written much of the background material and character bios, and I’m desperately eager to start writing the first mystery in the series, tentatively called, Wind Worn. I have ideas for at least five books in the series. They will be fast-paced, but engaging and enjoyable and fairly quick reads coming in around the 60,000 to 80,000 word mark.

Since these books will be in a completely different genre, I’ll be writing them under a pen name. Well, not really a pen name in the standard sense, I’ll just be dropping my last name and using my first and middle name only. It’s not that I’m not proud of my last name, I am, it just doesn’t fit very well on a book cover. I think Joshua Brann is short and punchy enough to be a proper mystery writer name. I’ll continue to use my full name for my science fiction and fantasy works since I already have a following under that name, and yes, five people can be considered a following.

I want to write at least five of the mysteries, but I can’t realistically get started until I finish Beyond the Gates’ run at JukePop, and finish book two of the Protectors. The Protectors will be a trilogy, but I’m sure I won’t be able to hold off on the mysteries before I’ve managed to finish the other two books.

If by some miracle (or ridiculously gargantuan amount of work) I do manage to get all of these things accomplished, I plan to revisit the world of Övrigmark and continue the adventures of Alexander and Hanna. I already have a rough outline for book two, and there are plenty of jotted notes and ideas for book three.

They say (although nobody knows who exactly) a writer needs to write a million words before they’re truly competent or before they find their voice. I certainly haven’t reached that benchmark yet, but I’m hoping that a renewed dedication to writing on a regular basis will put me on the path. If I could manage to stick to a goal of one-thousand words per day (excluding the occasional day of rest), it would be perfectly within my capability to write a novel every three months, at least the first draft of one at any rate. Factor in editing and revision and formatting, and there’s no reason I shouldn’t be able to publish two books per year. By my calculations, that means I have enough writing projects to keep me busy for the next five years.

Guess I’d better quit rambling, and get back to it.

P.S. – I wonder if this 858 word blog post counts toward my million words. I’m thinking yes :)


  1. Josh, you've really set yourself up for a fast-paced writing journey. Be careful of burnout. Take needed rest between those books. I wish I was as organized at outlining as you are.

    Best wishes at realizing your goals. If I can ever be of help, you know how to find me.

    Your friend


  2. Thanks, Leo. I'll definitely take some breaks here and there. I set high goals so that even if I don't accomplish them, I'll still have something to show for my efforts.

    I might just take you up on that offer of help when it comes time to find some beta readers ;)


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