(Okay, spoiler, this is purely a promotional and speculative article about things to-come beyond Hobbits and Lords of Rings in Middle Earth, or something very similar...)
So, Bilbo the happy little hobbit is about to end his adventures. The ring cycle of Middle Earth has come to its exhausting conclusion. Now what?
Like many enthusiast I dream of a future of more Middle Earth adventure. Some of this could be plundered from all the works of Tolkien not yet squeezed dry, but other adventure must come from new writing.
And like many enthusiasts I have my own ideas about that.
A few years ago, after crawling away from a hot TV set and a box set of Lord of the Rings (the migraine-inducing full edition) I began wondering about "what next?"
And than I began thinking ... "what if?"
What if Middle Earth wasn't set in the ancient mythic past long before the birth of modern civilization?
What if Middle Earth was a tale of some long distance future, so far in the future that, as the great sage Clarke said, science had become like magic?
What if all the events were actually about the gradual recovery of mankind from a traumatic, devastating catastrophe that ruined the world, reshaped it and we'd long forgotten our history, our origins, for tens or hundreds of thousands of years, during which mankind had twisted, evolved and branched in a score of directions to survive the catastrophe, from living deep in the heart of mountains , buried under snug hills, hidden and sheltered in deep green valleys, vales and dells, and more while mutated and artificially-created creatures, stalked, roamed and flew high over the ruined and blasted earth?
And what if those ancient times began to return as mankind began to recover?
So I took a journey through such a land and wrote "Dragon's Vale".
A world, not unlike Middle Earth, close but sufficiently different not to intrude on the rights, titles and properties of Hollywood studios and the Tolkien Trust (respect). A world where men once ruled like gods, and mutated men struggled. Now a world slowly, delicately crawling out of the caves and ruins watched over by something tremendously powerful, ancient and very, very dangerous.
Welcome to Dragon's Vale, coming to a screen soon?
Dragons' Vale is the next journey, a short story I wrote a few years ago that one day, should I ever succeed in my ambitions for a new writing studio, may become a new saga.
Within, there is potential for grand films, a trilogy of trilogies perhaps, exploring the New Earth after the departure of the Elves and High Wizards, when mankind begins to recover their world, and where a huge powerful secret power is kept safe deep in the heart of one remote, golden-green valley.
It's freely available for you to read, and share around with your friends, some of my readers have enjoyed it and spread it around the world, from my base in the UK to New Zealand and on to California. Leave me your e-mail at worldmaker.org to receive your free copy.
(Warning, contains rude words, violence and some bloodshed, along with unicorns, dragons and the return of Elves with a revelation of their origins. Not for the underage reader.)
(Oh, and if you think this to be nonsense, so be it. But bear in mind that with my other, mad inventor/designer, hat on I am currently working on the fund-raising. Not Hollywood funds (they don't know I exist) but in the car industry, designing the Subaru Concept 13 and more. Should they succeed I shall have the funds for the studio and more to-come.)