Edge of Darkness came to me as an idea years ago. It was more of a nugget then, not so much a full blown idea, as it came to me in the early 90s when I was knee-deep in the tech world myself. I was working as a hardware/software tech consultant in NYC and I was dating a guy that was making a mint building and selling custom desktop units. I was living in a house with 5 other friends in their 20s and we were “living the life” as it were. Young, fearless and looking for trouble.
We were also medieval recreationists and either frequented or held jobs at the local Renn Faire and/or Medieval Times restaurant. That meant that our house was full of medieval weapons, garb and armor at all times, and the bold attitude that came with it just amped up our atmosphere. We had an open door policy and at any given time there were couch crashers, impromptu parties and late night jaunts to diners.
There were also spontaneous challenges laid out. Often.
We had a long-running game of “Gotcha” at the house, setting booby traps, bombs (fake, of course) and other deterrents that we hoped our roommates would set off to gain us kill points. And it was brutal. Savage. And it was so much fun. It kept us sharp and observant. We had become private assassins.
Within this long-standing challenge, there was spur of the moment dares handed out. What we called the hunt. Usually, after midnight, we’d get a phone call. They were simple instructions – dress a certain way and be at a certain place at a certain time, usually within the hour of the call. And when we got there, there were more instructions. It worked like a scavenger hunt and the endgame was some sort of prize. Sometimes you would get to a checkpoint and find a handful of others there. Sometimes you’d get there alone. Again, it kept us alert and observant. And hungry for the game.
These were my formative years and these were the moments this story came into my head. Running. Chasing. Being chased. Finding the prize. Finding yourself. It’s all in there. It’s what excited me about life and what I felt would make a good story.
Why the future? Well, tech has always been a love of mine, something that always piques my interest. I’ve always been a fixer, a tinkerer. I like to see how things work from the inside. What better way to delve into this but to combine technology and life. And what better way to throw in conflict but to push us ahead into a time when they could be one and the same? Sure, Calder could tinker with his augment, but what about the psyche? It’s not like I can go into my brain and change memories or thoughts like I could on a hard drive. But what if I could? And what if you just couldn’t fix things? What if there was no going back?
Like the tagline for the book asks – How do you destroy the monster without becoming one yourself?
That’s what the underlying theme of this book is. How do you exorcise the demons if the demons are a part of you? It’s literal and figurative in this story, but it’s a concern we all have to some extent and one that will only become a more prominent issue as time and tech advances.
But until I see a hover car, I’ll be right here, waiting for my friends, keeping my eye out for the next big tech breakthrough….