So, you may have noticed I haven't really posted anything new in a couple months. I've had a lot of things going on in life-- not the least of which is taking care of a hyper-curious newborn full time. In addition, I've been working on art shows, professional commissions and my fledgling writing career. Which leads me to the point of this journal.
Sadly, the Field Guide to Amaterasu has been floundering in Limbo for a long time now. While I love speculative biology, creating all those creatures, and writing all that text takes a crap-ton of time that I haven't had in a while. However, I think I've found a way to resurrect that project.
I'm a huge fan of pulpy sci-fi, fantasy and adventure fiction-- Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard, C.L. Moore, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fritz Leiber, A. Merritt, Richard Lupoff, Harold Lamb, etc, etc. I've always wanted to try my hand at writing a Pulp-style novel-- particularly something in the "Sword and Planet" genre.
Sword and Planet is basically Sword and Sorcery with a thin veneer of science created by setting it on another planet, often somewhere in our solar system (though even there, the planetary accuracy is frequently non-existent-- Burroughs "Venus" series is set on a freaking water world!). John Carter of Mars is the most famous example of this genre, though there are hundreds of others.
My idea would be to do a Sword and Planet series set on Saturn and its rings and moons, except I would try to stick closer to the actual geology and astronomy of the region. There's some pretty crazy stuff in the Saturnian system-- such as the "Walnut Moon" Iapetus, the "dust mountains", "spokes" and "propellars" of the B ring and the plasma-venting ice volcanoes of Enceladus, just to name a few. I'd make some scientific attempt to explain how the main character ended up there, and how she can survive on all the varied worlds of the Saturnian system (basically, she's can alter her entire body on an enzymatic and structural level).
In this new project, the Amaterasian organisms would be part of the ecology of Saturn (which isn't much of a stretch, since the Izanagi system was based on Saturn). Amaterasu itself would become Titan. All the organisms would be transported over fully intact, so you'd still see plenty of boukalizoans, triskelions and weird oculophyton biology. Each story in the series would be accompanied by a new guide-style entry detailing the creatures and environments that the protagonist encountered. I've been wanting to use this story/field guide concept for a while now. I'm actually working on another series with the same idea, except that one would be more of an exploratory adventure-- like Indiana Jones but with biology, set in an Everglades-like setting.
Anyway, I'm curious to see what you guys would think of the idea. It would definitely motivate me to create more Amaterasian creatures.