In the summer of 2013 I started working on a screenplay. I had the filmmaking itch again, and I had a concept I was playing around with. The idea was that I would write a feature-length story, break it into 12 parts, and release it on YouTube once a week for three months. Still sounds like a lot of fun.
As I was working on the concept I was running a local meetup called Corridor Filmmakers, where filmmakers and wannabe filmmakers would get together once a month and talk about the industry, our interests, and projects. It was an interesting crowd, so naturally the conversation was usually fairly entertaining at the very least.
One day I noticed someone looking rather lost. I asked him if he was at the cafe for the meetup and he said yes. That's when I met the man who would be my co-author, and one of my best friends, Jordan Pinckney. At the end of that day's meetup, as we were talking about project ideas, I pitched (once again) my web series idea and it piqued Jordan's interest.
Let's jump ahead a bit.
After I pitched him the whole story, we learned it matched very well to a dream he had just a week prior and we started working together. As we dug into the story we learned that the actual story I had been working on, which was now our story, was much larger than a two-hour movie.
We then started writing a novel. Which turned into a trilogy.
I love the process of developing a story. We developed centuries of background and spent six months figuring out who our characters were.
Destined is a Young Adult Science Fiction/Fantasy adventure about a teenage girl struggling to understand herself and her relationship with her estranged father as she deals with intense alien nightmares. While spending a weekend at her father’s house she learns about forgiveness and starts to reestablish a relationship with her dad, all while navigating a love interest and an unexpected visitor.
We’re often asked, “As two men, why did you make your protagonist a female?” When we started developing Destined in the summer 2013, the world didn’t have strong characters like Rey from Star Wars. We felt the world needed more strong young women characters that both girls, boys, women, and men could be inspired by. The core issues facing our protagonist, Leana, are challenges we all face.
Part of the fun in writing a story like Destined is developing the cast of characters and their backgrounds. We spent six months discovering our main characters, along with 700 years of history and backstory. The time spent at the whiteboard paid off; we’ve been fortunate enough to have many fans tell us how much they love the characters. They make them laugh, smile, cry, and cringe. It’s such a thrill to take our readers on an adventure through our story.
Official Synopsis: For years, sixteen-year-old Leana has been plagued with terrifying nightmares, and now they’re getting worse, creeping into her waking hours. In a desperate attempt to help her make sense of them, her mother is sending her to the last person on Earth Leana would want to visit… her estranged father. On his farm, she finds answers she wasn’t expecting.
About Destined Productions
The book Destined is step one in a larger plan. That’s why we established Destined Productions. It’s the legal entity where we aim to accomplish our mission: to tell stories that entertain and encourage others.
After three months on the market we’ve sold over 300 paperback copies of Destined, and have attended numerous events throughout Iowa. We also have our book in four bookstores throughout Cedar Rapids, and Iowa City, Iowa.
Throughout the next couple years we plan on writing the second and third book in The Blood Games Trilogy, as well as write shorter stories to release between books that tell the stories of supporting characters from the core trilogy books. We also plan on developing a Kickstarter campaign to help raise funds to create a plush toy and get us to the infamous San Diego Comic Con next year.
We have at least six large conventions planned over the next 12 months in Illinois, Iowa, and California. After a successful time at Des Moines Comic Con in May 2016, we’re excited to share our story with fans across the country.
Our IP of strong characters and compelling stories throughout the Destined universe is something we want to find new, creative ways to share with audiences around the world. We would like to create a series for Netflix, and have plans to create a treatment of the first book to pitch to their organization. We would also like to create graphic novels and other creative ways to tell stories, like designer toys and high-quality prints, for example.
Check out the Destined site or pop over to Amazon to see the reviews.