I first featured Jeremiah Franklin’s Dark Tomorrow series here. FALL OF THE CROW, the third in the series, is set to debut next week, on July 21st:
Having endured the doomsday virus, the global blackout, and a series of violent clashes with the sinister group known as the Cult of the Crow, teenage survivors Sawyer and Sara find themselves unexpectedly thrust into a new and dangerous game where the stakes have never been higher. Faced with malicious forces beyond his control, Sawyer comes face to face with his past, and he is forced to make a choice unlike any he has confronted before—either take his place as a leader of the new world order, or save the life of the girl he loves. Still, among whispers of government conspiracies and clandestine military operations, it is not long before Sawyer and Sara are drawn into a conflict greater than they could ever imagine, and the young couple find themselves fighting not only for their own lives, but for the very future of the country.
In our last interview, you said, “[The] contradiction between good and evil, and right and wrong, comes out in my writing.” Can you provide an example of this?
I think that when you are writing about an end-of-the-world scenario, the concepts of right and wrong, and good and evil, can certainly become blurred. With a deadly virus killing people by the millions, the characters in my books are faced with seemingly impossible choices, and they must make hard decisions in order to survive. I feel this is illustrated in the fact that the main characters, Sawyer and Sara, take no joy in being forced to kill their fellow man, yet they also show little remorse for the lives they take. To some, this callousness could be perceived as an indication of evil. However, I imagine that for those who have been faced with such a scenario, the decision of whether it is right or wrong to kill another person is not so cut and dry.
I’d probably still argue that killing someone is a pretty callous act, but I also understand that there are a variety of circumstances around such situations. DARK TOMORROW: FALL OF THE CROW is the third in your Dark Tomorrow series. In what ways did this world grow and change in ways you didn’t expect?
I would hate to give too much away, but the third book takes the story in an entirely new direction, and in the aftermath of the viral pandemic that has wiped out humankind, the world of Dark Tomorrow evolves into a decidedly more sinister and complicated place for those who have survived. Whereas in the previous books, Sawyer and Sara are fighting simply to stay alive, in FALL OF THE CROW, they are unexpectedly thrust into a new conflict, and they find themselves fighting for something much greater than their own two lives.
Sounds like they’re faced with plenty of challenges. You also mentioned you were working on a YA dystopian series. Do you feel dystopian is easier to market now than it was a few years ago?
To be honest, I’m not so sure I can answer that question with any clarity. Considering that our world seems to be heading toward an uncertain and potentially dystopic future, I’m not convinced that readers are clamoring to immerse themselves in books that paint a less than rosy picture of our future world. The fact is that world events are changing rapidly, and whether you are writing dystopian fiction or anything else, there are absolutely no guarantees.
True. What is one thing you would tell your younger writer self and why?
I would tell myself to be prepared for the rollercoaster ride that comes with being a published author. You must be able to weather the highs and the lows and realize that success is measured in many ways. The key is to enjoy the entire ride—and to hang on for dear life!
Good advice! What is the relationship between your books and the current events we are experiencing now?
It has been somewhat strange to be the author of a series of books based on a deadly virus that decimates humanity while at the same time the COVID-19 virus sweeps across the globe. Although it was written long before, quite eerily, much of FALL OF THE CROW mirrors what is occurring across the world today, and my readers learn more about the beginning of the end of the world, about how the virus came to be, and about how quickly our civilization descended into panic, violence, and chaos. If anything, my books’ relationship to current events should serve as a reminder that the world is a fragile place, and that circumstances can change very rapidly. Nevertheless, I am hopeful. Although our current situation is similar and alarming to the world of Dark Tomorrow in many ways, I believe in the power of positive action, and that someday, this too shall hopefully pass. And if not, and the virus continues to rage on? My best suggestion is to read my books. At least then you’ll have a frighteningly realistic idea of what might come next.