Here’s the second half of what James Christie, author of Dear Miss Landau, hopes to do in the future. He is hoping to continue with his trilogy of Drusilla. Part of the second part, “Drusilla’s Redemption” was included in yesterday’s post. Here’s is part two:
So here’s the truest answer I can give to question seven:
a) Dear Miss Landau, with its melding of fiction and reality, was published in March 2012. I originally conceived the idea as a screenplay while walking down the hill from Candlewood Drive and it can easily be turned into one.
b) The next book should be the Drusilla trilogy – Roses, Redemption and Revenant. The three novellas which would make up this book would give it a nice, neat length of about 100,000 words – and the novellas are already, written, proofed and edited! They’re all done! One signed set is sitting in my bookshelves in Glasgow, (I just got Drusilla Revenant signed at the Vampires Ball at Heathrow) and Revenant is waiting to be read. Chaplin and I are having trouble getting this to the attention of Simon Pulse (a division of Simon & Schuster) and we need help from the Buffy fanbase to do so.
c) Dear Miss Landau should be optioned as a film. During two trips across America, virtually everyone I met either had a friend or relative with autism, or knew of Buffy the Vampire Slayer – sometimes both. I’ve no doubt there is a large potential audience out there. The film version (with Juliet Landau’s permission) would differ quite a bit from the book and is probably the only possible means in existence today by which some of the original cast of Buffy could return (albeit briefly) to their roles… Again, Chaplin and I need help to achieve this.
Incidentally, I’m also working on a fourth Dru tale, recently renamed Spike & Dru: the Graveyard of Empires, which should (I sincerely hope) be the romantic tale of love and bullets which James Marsters apparently always hoped would reunite the deadly duo.
It is also intriguing to consider the fact that at the Vampires Ball this year, I described to James Marsters the way I gained a sudden connection with Drusilla in 2009 (Dear Miss Landau, chapter 14) and asked him how it compared with the acting chemistry which sprang up between himself and Juliet Landau when he was being cast.
Exactly the same, I understand.
So that’s it. One possible future for the Buffyverse is sitting on a bookshelf in Glasgow like the Lost Ark of the Covenant, just itching to be revealed. A unique book which would make a unique film is waiting to be noticed.
It will be a great pity if such potential never fully saw the light of day, but I should accept the cast and fans’ right to exercise their own free will.
On the other hand, I do have a theory about why all this has happened.
As most fans will know, the 2009 Star Trek reboot featured a plot line wherein a bad guy from the 24th century came back in time and knocked the tapestry of Kirk and crew’s 23rd century destinies askew.
As Spock put it:
“Whatever our lives might have been, if the time continuum was disrupted, our destinies have changed.”
Being both an Asperger and a bit of a geek, I’m quite au fait with the concepts of Schrödinger’s Cat, possible futures and alternate timelines. Amazingly, there was a pivotal moment in October 2009 where I found Juliet’s “lost” email and had to decide whether or not to answer it (Dear Miss Landau, chapter 25). If I had not done so, it is highly probable that the time line in which you, the reader, are now living and reading this article, would not exist.
There would probably have been no enduring correspondence between the Hollywood star and the Rain Man from Partick, no sequels to Roses and no Dear Miss Landau. The two trips across America would never have taken place, Juliet Landau and I would not have met that day on Sunset Boulevard, the possible unfinished story arc would never have been spotted by me and so on.
This is what happened:
Late on a stygian Friday evening early in October, I took a look at my obsolete account.
I scrolled down through the 75 or so emails stagnating in the inbox, deleting some, not really concentrating on the job but still doing it with autistic precision.
Then I saw something.
An email from Juliet Landau, dated August 15 2009.
Two weeks before I’d emailed her!
With the care of a librarian handling the Book of Kells, I opened the email:
From: Juliet Landau
Sent: 15 August 2009 03:57
To: James Christie
Subject: Your Story
I just finished your story. I thought it was great. I really enjoyed it. You managed to catch Drusilla’s voice and behavior so beautifully. The sad, lost, haunted feeling of Dru was there. I myself have just written a comic about Dru as part of season 6 of “Angel.” Please check it out if you’d like.
I sat there for a full five minutes, deciding what to do.
Take the advice and hold back, or take a shot in the dark and reply?
Sometimes there are signs.
I felt a quite a lot like Marty McFly at the Enchantment Under The Sea dancein the time-travel film Back to the Future Part II. He and I, both at a turning point between two alternate futures and not sure which road to take.
Reply. Something might happen.
Hold back. Nothing will happen.
In the end, I came to a simple decision.
Juliet Landau had been kind enough to email me. It would be impolite not to at least reply.
So, with the click of a mouse, I summoned the future…
(Dear Miss Landau, p. 94)
Boy, those guys in The Big Bang Theory would love this…
I even wrote an article on the subject in April 2012:
Why, then, has it turned out this way instead?
Well, to turn to Star Trek again, although Nero’s incursion altered the timeline, Kirk and his crew still had destinies they were meant to fulfil: Kirk to command the Enterprise, Spock to be science officer and so on; and despite the damage to the timeline it seemed as if they were all, by accident or design, slotting themselves back into their proper historical settings.
In the case of myself, Juliet Landau and Drusilla, the disruption – if indeed there even was one – was not quite that dramatic.
I mean, given the literary metaphors in Dear Miss Landau, I wouldn’t mind taking command of the Enterprise and fighting Nero to the death, but I don’t think that’s quite what’s required here.
It’s as if, a few years ago, something went wrong. Maybe not a big thing. An opportunity was missed, a story arc unfinished, a character and a person’s potential perhaps slightly overlooked. Even a small glitch can cause major alterations in a timeline. This is known as a ripple effect.
Something which should have happened, but didn’t. Events and destinies not unfolding quite the way they should have. This concept was most recently explored in the 2008 Doctor Who episode Turn Left where Donna Noble’s decision to turn right instead of left at a junction led to massive temporal changes and millions of deaths, including the Doctor…
Over the past three years, it has often seemed to me that the tripartite path detailed here is the one that should be taken. It has already enabled me to change my life and redeem myself by becoming a published author. It also, frankly, helped me regain my faith in women, which had taken quite a battering. I’ve had to take a highly conservative position regarding this up until recently, but I’m now as sure as I can be that this is the way to go and that there is more to be done.
It feels like somebody up there is trying to do a repair job, and it’s not finished yet.
To be clear but partisan about it, ever since Dear Miss Landau was published I’ve been able to say that if it all ended tomorrow, I would have nothing to complain about.
But I think fate, sometimes subtly, sometimes blatantly, has thrown us all a curve ball; and if we don’t run with it, don’t look for that sunlit city on the hill, we’ll regret it to our dying day.
Dear Miss Landau is available through Amazon via Click Here to Purchase Dear Miss Landau and is published by Chaplin Books.