Power Rangers: GeoForce
Final Author's Note
Okay, I'm not sure if posting a whole chapter like this is kosher, but chalk it up to the influence of Piers Anthony. I just wanted to take this opportunity to record some of my thoughts, feelings, and creative process for GeoForce as a kind of thank you to all of you have stuck through this story. Think of this like the extra features on a DVD.
First off, a bit of history. I started GeoForce as an exercise to help keep me occupied and sane after I lost my job in November 2005. Unfortunately, when you have the level of education and licensure I have, it's not all that easy to just get a new job, because a lot of things I'm overqualified for, so writing became a way to fill the days.
The whole concept of the Powers and the Sigils actually has their origins in a Pagan themed comic book idea I had been toying with for a few years, but never really got going on. However, when I discovered the Fanfiction site and started reading PR fic, the idea just gelled. The setting was defined by the fact that we were nearing the end of the SPD season on Power Rangers, which I was really enjoying. However, when I started writing, I decided I didn't want to use the whole PR timeline, so I took things AU and developed the streamlined timeline that is the GeoForce-verse history. Part of that was born out my always wondering where the hell the Lightspeed Ranger tech came from. Therefore, I decided that a former Ranger was involved. I chose Justin, and then just pushed back Lightspeed until he would have been in his 30's. My other reason was that I always felt that having a villain like Scorpicus in this galaxy only a year after Countdown to Destruction made trivialized Zordon's sacrifice, so I gave the GeoForce-verse a decade or so major evil free.
The characters. I usually have a horrible time naming characters, and with GeoForce it was no different. However, I finally decided to give the original four Rangers names that reflect their elements. The boys are a bit obvious with family names of Forge and Mason. The girls are a bit more subtle. Andrea's family name of Eastman is a reference to the element of Air being associated with compass east in most Pagan traditions. To get Nia's name I switched from the family name being the tell to her first name, and after playing around ended up just dropping a few letters out of naiad, a water spirit.
Local friends who have read GeoForce have wondered why I used the name Conrad. The reality is, Conrad was named that so I could do the "Andy, Connie" joke in chapter one. That joke is probably what also set up the eventual pairing of Andrea and Conrad. Because, when I was originally plotting the story Conrad was going to be the gay character and end up with my eventual Black ranger, with Tyler and Craig having a Tommy/Jason kind of connection and Ty hooking up with the White Ranger, but the characters had other ideas.
I chose Aisha for Grandmother from the very beginning. I always liked Aisha, she had such a great combo of sweetness and aggression. Plus, the fact that she left the team to go to Africa and joined a somewhat "primitive" tribe created the opening for the mysticism that is part of the Grandmother character.
Like I said, at the beginning I knew who the original four Rangers were, most of the stuff about their families, and that Aisha was Grandmother, but I had no clue who the Black and White Rangers were going to be or where they were going to come from. In retrospect, using Malika and Crul and their whole back story seems obvious . . . and when the Muse slapped me upside the head with it I was like "duh," but for the first 12 chapters or so I was clueless.
As I said before, Tyler and Craig's relationship came out of nowhere. However, it gave me an opportunity to create a positive "huh?" moment. I know a lot of people read the conversation between Tyler and his dad at the end of Chapter 27 and thought, since Aaron wasn't freaking out about Ty and Craig, and paralleled Ty's taste's with Kris', that Kris must also be gay. But then I threw the Bethany Torres curveball in chapter 28, but after Kris went on about Craig's looks. So, a lot of people probably assumed that Kris is bi. Not so, Kris is 100 straight. Remember, GeoForce takes place nearly a century from now (2103 to be exact), so what I was trying to convey is that gay/straight/whatever is no longer an issue in their world. A guy can dream, right?
Back on the subject of Kris and Alpha Squad . . . they all got a lot more page time than I originally intended. More of that the story writing itself stuff. Dramlin especially got more development than I originally planned, but it was unavoidable once I decided to write Future Red. Oh, and the big secret on Future Red: that entire sub-story had two points . . . to introduce Ty's Dragon Form, and to present my vision of the Aquitarians. And that bring up where I got the team name Doron Sena. In Ninja Sentai Kakuranger, they henshin with their Doron Changers. Sena is another letter drop word . . . the t and i from Sentai.
I had a hard time coming up with the rest of the team's Dragon Forms and zords, but eventually it fell into place. I could never figure out a higher power level for Tyler that didn't seem silly, so I dropped that idea. Oh, and the whole Elemental Dragon God Ultrazord represents a major rewrite of chapter 42. There was an Ultrazord, but my original version didn't feel right, so I let the Muse guide me.
Chapter 43's basic outline was written sometime around chapter 30 whilst I was in the midst of writer's block. I'm still not completely happy with it. It's one of those chapters that I can see in my head, and it looks so much better there than I was able to describe it.
And yes, Melissa voices a little Omega Ranger bashing for me in Chapter 44.
I just want to thank everyone who read, reviewed, and put up with the delays that have manifested over the last 15 chapters. I really wanted to finish GeoForce in a year, but my new job just drained more of my energy than I planned. But, it's done. I may revisit the characters one day, I may not.
So, what's next? Well, I've had this MMPR Season 2 AU, JasonOC slash story that's been mulling around that has some aspects that are a homage to a certain long running franchise featuring an X. However, I doubt that one will see any work until at least July, as I will be on vacation in a place with no computers and barely any cell phone reception most of the rest of June.