Funding over $11,000.00 in less than a month to publish the first novel in a young adult series isn’t easy, but perhaps this project has the potential to make the effort worthwhile.
Inspired by his children’s love of the genre—from other series such as Veronica Roth’s “Divergent”, Suzanne Collin’s “The Hunger Games”, and James Dashner’s “The Maze Runner”— on July 29th, 2014, Zackery Cope began work on the first in a series of post-apocalyptic young adult novels, called “Scout’s Honor”. Almost three months later, on October 20th, 2014, the first draft was completed.
A first draft of almost any novel is unpolished, with rough corners and sharp edges, so the next two years saw draft after draft of the novel, resulting in a nearly completed work. The story involves the protagonist, Brecken Walsh, as he undergoes final testing before graduation and prepares to celebrate his sixteenth birthday. Before he has a chance to do either, he finds himself humiliated by his younger brother Anthony, in front of his friends and romantic interest, Hillary Tate. Roused to anger, Brecken fights with his brother, resulting in trouble with the law, the breakup of his relationship, and jeopardizing his dream of following in his father’s footsteps and joining the elite military branch known as the Scouts.
In a rapid series of events, Anthony disappears, a rival plots against him at school, and a mysterious figure from his father’s past appears in Brecken’s life, leaving him unsure of who to trust. He now must contend with intense year end testing, a damaged romance, and the stress of a runaway younger brother—or was he kidnapped? To Brecken’s horror, someone then attempts to frame him for murder . . . who could hold such a grudge against a sixteen year old who never hurt anyone? It will take all of Brecken’s strength and resolve to face his fears and discover who has been stalking him and his loved ones, before it’s too late.
“Scout’s Honor” is the first in a trilogy of YA post-apocalyptic mystery thrillers. After two years of preparation, all that remains is funding the time to work with an editor to complete the novel, replacing outdated work equipment, creating the cover art which displays the flavor of the story for the audience, and polish the website which will allow the fans of YA thrillers to find the story’s home. Working an average of more than sixty hours a week, raising two teenage children, and helping his visually impaired wife maintain sanity in their home (or at least trying not to add to the insanity), finding the time which “Scout’s Honor” deserves requires more than the coffee-fueled midnight writing sessions which Zackery has been able to devote to it. “Many people know the difficulties of finding the time to write,” says Zackery. “But the demands of completing a novel for publication are nearly a full-time job unto themselves.” In order to meet these demands, he has launched a Kickstarter campaign to generate the funds necessary to complete work on the novel.
For the “Scout’s Honor” Kickstarter to be successful it must raise $11,250.00 by October 12th, 2016, or it’s back to the midnight cram sessions of editing and saving the money for the equipment, cover art, and website a little at a time, which might take more than another two years. Follow Zackery Cope on Twitter (@ZackeryCope), on Facebook to monitor his progress, and visit his website at zackeryacope.wordpress.com for samples of “Scout’s Honor” and other works. If post-apocalyptic YA thrillers are your fantasy of choice, consider backing his campaign with as little as $1 to show your support, and if you would like to donate more you may be one of the first to read the completed novel or to directly collaborate on a short work of fiction with the author.