Basics of Manifestation Files

[Note: This blog post used to have some personal stuff that has been retroactively removed as a precaution]

On a reading note, I finished a book on Ashes, Ashes, a YA post-apocalyptic book. It was good. Although the large use of to-be verbs bothered me at first, the rest of the word choice was beautiful. The characters were round in a subtle way, their traits peeking out in a way that adds depth. The antagonist also caught me off guard too. I would recommend it.

Now, about my project: Manifestation Files. I might as well describe it to get you readers interested (once you readers come).

To put it simply, it's a Young Adult Urban Fantasy. It's about a Memphis highschooler (Bryan) who is more than bitter with people around him. When an exchange student from England (Finn) comes over to live in his house, Bryan stumbles into a Manifestation. A Manifestation in my story is a spirit that spawned from human emotions.

It turns out that Finn is a psychic. Bryan gets turned into a psychic. They fight crime Manifestations.
I'm trying to find the way to brush up the premise. The "human emotion" part should be interesting enough, but it's all in the execution. I have 260 pages in my rough draft, and it all needs rewriting. By reading the first page of my second draft, I can see that I'll have to revise it once or twice before I could release a beta version. If my draft is riddled in grammar errors and awkward wording, my critiquers won't be able to focus on the plot. I'm still smoothing out the kinks.
So, some things to note about Manifestation Files:

  • Bryan is the 1st person narrator. He sees the world through jaded glasses, and comments on people around him in a less-than-nice way. He also snarks about their actions, and drops a pop reference or two in the most subtle of ways. He has good intentions though, acting like a jerk but yet making sure his classmates (or Finn) doesn't do anything bad. However, my goal is to have the readers emphasize with his bitterness on some level, or at least like him enough to see character development.
  • Finn is the co-protagonist. He's reserved, timid, modest, clumsy, overly-apologetic to the point of having Bryan asking him to stop apologizing. He's good-hearted though. But there is an air of mystery surrounding him. He talks little of his psychic life, or psychics in general. This leads Bryan--and possibly the readers--speculating about him.
  • The magic system, or rather the mechanics of psychic powers, are split into three branches: sensory (enhancing the senses/body), internal (affecting the mind), and external (affecting the outside world).
  • There are positive and negative Manifestations, which are created when a person has high emotions. Their only motive is to drain other people of all their emotion but the one that they were created from, leaving them either empty, or dead. Positive Manifestations are slightly better, but also can be harmless.
  • The exact nature of psychics aren't revealed until half-way through the book.

I think that's all the basics. I'll talk about it more in the future.