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Admittedly, I’ve tried to sell this story in various forms for quite some time without any luck. I even asked a friend for help, thinking maybe he could suggest the proper venue. However, it didn’t take.
So I thought of self-publishing it. Here it is: Ice by James Pyles. No anthologies, no indie publishers, this one is all mine.
Good thing, too. When I went over my submitted story, I found horrible errors I never saw before. I took weeks just reading and re-reading “Ice” until I finally got it to the point where I thought it was ready (I’ll write a separate blog post about my first experience with Kindle Digital Publishing (KDP) by the by).
Here’s the synopsis I wrote for Amazon:
In eons past, the armies of Surtur the fire goddess and Ymir the frost giant waged an unceasing battle for dominance over the Earth. For all those ages, they maintained an uneasy but enduring balance. Then humanity rose from the mud, and with the passage of time, came to fear fire more than ice, devoting their own meager forces to the conflict. Not to be denied, Surtur beat back both mortals and giants, consigning the planet to unrelenting heat and the ice lords to seeming oblivion. Before leaving the material realm, in jest she gave humanity the gift of magic and the curse of the return of dragons.
For thousands of years thereafter, the race of people knew nothing but a world without ice. Spanning the globe in sailing ships, the humans continued to thrive and remembered not the distant past. Then Captain Ki-Moon Yong of the Oceanic Trading Company vessel the Star of Jindo is assigned the task of solving the most profound mystery ever encountered. Another ship has gone missing and her only remaining crewman suddenly commits suicide after visiting the sunken continent of Antarctica. All of the dinosaur species of the south have gone mad, invading the guarded towns and cities on their way north, as if to escape some monstrous terror.
The answers to these enigmas all lie on the continent at the bottom of the world, and Captain Moon must take the Star to a strange research facility to discover them. But once there, he is confronted with a truth so profound and so nightmarish that it will change the very nature of reality. Can the Star of Jindo escape the inevitable in time to warn an unbelieving world of that truth, or will they be consumed in frozen horror?
There’s a lot of history behind this, and maybe I’ll convince someone to interview me about it. I found out that people could still live if the world were a lot hotter and the air had a lot more carbon dioxide in it. I discovered what the world would look like if absolutely 100% of all the ice melted. I had a lot of fun with dinosaurs. I wrote this story in so many different forms, even I couldn’t keep up with it.
My hero, Ki-Moon Yong literally came out of my dreams. Really, I dreamed of a young Korean boy who was being conscripted into the army in a world where Korea barely had single-shot pistols and China had automatic weapons. I also dreamed of a female Chinese pirate, who turns out to be real historically, who led a group of 500 pirate ships, literally the most powerful pirate band in history.
That’s only the beginning. “Ice” is, in my humble opinion, a short and good adventure story that turns climate change on its head. I will be promoting the heck out of it in the near future. Keep your eyes on this space.