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Alliance: Metamorphosis

Skinny87

haha no don't make me review Queensway!!!
Patreon supporter
Published by SLP
Pronouns
He/Him
#2
Thanks for running this review @Gary Oswald and doing all the prep work around getting it on the blog!

Now here's an AH novel that is by far the most original, innovative and engaging I've come across in a long time. In terms of scope and originality of purpose, it reminds me of The Oregon War by our own TT Drewett - using vastly different locations and concepts to tell the sort of fresh stories needed to help defuse the genre's reliance on stale, boring scenarios and stereotypes (with the exception of SLP of course)
 

Charles EP M.

Well-known member
Published by SLP
#3
That is an interesting new idea! My wallet wakes from its slumber.

Also not wrong:

Alliance: Metamorphosis does unfortunately sound rather generic and like one of those endless sci-fi novels that litter that genre, usually with a chisel-faced Space Marine glaring manfully out from the cover while a spaceship explodes behind him
I honestly was expecting that's what the book would be when I clicked the link here.
 

Coiler

Connoisseur of the Miscellaneous
Published by SLP
Location
Nu Yawk
#4
using vastly different locations and concepts to tell the sort of fresh stories needed to help defuse the genre's reliance on stale, boring scenarios and stereotypes
Just curious, and I know it's a weird question: Would you prefer a "Southern/German Victory" story where the plotting and and actual writing was very good and well-done, or something with a good, intriguing premise but with the actual prose and structure falling short?
 

Skinny87

haha no don't make me review Queensway!!!
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Published by SLP
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#5
Just curious, and I know it's a weird question: Would you prefer a "Southern/German Victory" story where the plotting and and actual writing was very good and well-done, or something with a good, intriguing premise but with the actual prose and structure falling short?
Ah, now, an intriguing question and one I'm not quite sure how to answer

To try and keep relevant to the review, I suppose I would prefer an author attempt something with a new and intriguing premise for a scenario even if the writing fell down in some way; though Mr Oliver-Godric manages the feat of both!

Good CSA stuff can still be written - after all our own @Fenwick and @MAC88 demonstrate that - but honestly like the WWIII scenario, I think more new premises are needed to get the genre out of the rut it's stuck in.
 
#7
Hi everyone! my first post here. I'm intrigued by the comments on the title. The central premise is: 'alliance versus empire'. At this time period Empire was the only model of civilization. Empires expanded by conquering their neighbors, and were conquered in turn by another empire, or laid low by natural disaster. I wanted to explore an alternative which was viable. Alliance made sense in the cultural context of the Americas at this period. I taught in federal prisons and at a First Nations college for many years and saw the effects of colonization writ large in today's native people. It all came together, starting from two character sketches which emerged in a writing exercise for my writing group.
 

Alex Richards

She needs an artificial Mountain, not AV
Patreon supporter
Published by SLP
Location
Derbyshire
#8
Hi everyone! my first post here. I'm intrigued by the comments on the title. The central premise is: 'alliance versus empire'. At this time period Empire was the only model of civilization. Empires expanded by conquering their neighbors, and were conquered in turn by another empire, or laid low by natural disaster. I wanted to explore an alternative which was viable. Alliance made sense in the cultural context of the Americas at this period. I taught in federal prisons and at a First Nations college for many years and saw the effects of colonization writ large in today's native people. It all came together, starting from two character sketches which emerged in a writing exercise for my writing group.
First things first, welcome aboard.

I think this falls into the category of 'yes, once you've explained it it all makes sense.' Which is an issue in both marketing and politics where you're somewhat relying on people making an immediate snap decision on whether to look further.
 

Skinny87

haha no don't make me review Queensway!!!
Patreon supporter
Published by SLP
Pronouns
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#9
Hi everyone! my first post here. I'm intrigued by the comments on the title. The central premise is: 'alliance versus empire'. At this time period Empire was the only model of civilization. Empires expanded by conquering their neighbors, and were conquered in turn by another empire, or laid low by natural disaster. I wanted to explore an alternative which was viable. Alliance made sense in the cultural context of the Americas at this period. I taught in federal prisons and at a First Nations college for many years and saw the effects of colonization writ large in today's native people. It all came together, starting from two character sketches which emerged in a writing exercise for my writing group.
Welcome aboard! I'd love to ask some questions about the novel and what inspired it, but first - just to highlight the point about the title of Alliance: Metamorphosis, here's a couple of titles I found from just searching for 'Alliance' on my Kindle App:

Screenshot_20200627-130729_Amazon Kindle.jpg

Screenshot_20200627-130751_Amazon Kindle.jpg

(This one even has the Marine and the exploding ship in the background!)

Now the novel's title makes perfect sense in the context of reading it, aided by the nicely-chosen picture on the front.

But unfortunately we are writing in a genre which is often difficult to differentiate from other genres like scifi, fantasy and steampunk, and where common phrases like 'Alliance' are routinely used. I'm sure some authors here like @Thande and @Coiler can highlight the challenges of choosing a distinctive title for their novels!

It's just a thought for going forward in the future - I'd love to see your excellent writing as well known as possible!
 

Thande

Shadow Minister for Generic Nice Things
Published by SLP
#10
But unfortunately we are writing in a genre which is often difficult to differentiate from other genres like scifi, fantasy and steampunk, and where common phrases like 'Alliance' are routinely used. I'm sure some authors here like @Thande and @Coiler can highlight the challenges of choosing a distinctive title for their novels!
Yes indeed - not that I would claim to be an expert either, because we are all at the mercy of the Amazon Algorithm.

One problem I've encountered is that often the good 'connecting quote to something familiar' type titles have already been used so much that your book won't stand out from the crowd. Though, conversely, sometimes surprisingly few other works have used them (as I found with The Twilight's Last Gleaming). This is one reason why I used the title format The Surly Bonds of Earth, because literally everyone has written a book using the 'to slip the surly bonds of Earth' quote, but almost everyone either uses it in full or abbreviates it to 'to slip the...' rather than focusing on the second half. Which thankfully also thematically fits the content of my book, in that it's about the concept of humanity trapped on Earth and ultimately facing its own extinction unless someone changes the rules.
 
#11
First things first, welcome aboard.

I think this falls into the category of 'yes, once you've explained it it all makes sense.' Which is an issue in both marketing and politics where you're somewhat relying on people making an immediate snap decision on whether to look further.
Point. I had no idea it would get that reaction. I checked and there was nothing else with that name. As a big fan of Scifi, especially military sci-fi, I didn't get that "UH-Oh" feeling when I chose it. FYI, the first working title was 'Whispers', until I googled it! Perhaps I'm Title impaired! Seriously, Metamorphosis has that Kafka insinuation which I rather liked.
 
#12
Welcome aboard! I'd love to ask some questions about the novel and what inspired it, but first - just to highlight the point about the title of Alliance: Metamorphosis, here's a couple of titles I found from just searching for 'Alliance' on my Kindle App:

View attachment 22285

View attachment 22286

(This one even has the Marine and the exploding ship in the background!)

Now the novel's title makes perfect sense in the context of reading it, aided by the nicely-chosen picture on the front.

But unfortunately we are writing in a genre which is often difficult to differentiate from other genres like scifi, fantasy and steampunk, and where common phrases like 'Alliance' are routinely used. I'm sure some authors here like @Thande and @Coiler can highlight the challenges of choosing a distinctive title for their novels!

It's just a thought for going forward in the future - I'd love to see your excellent writing as well known as possible!
EeK!
 

Alex Richards

She needs an artificial Mountain, not AV
Patreon supporter
Published by SLP
Location
Derbyshire
#13
Point. I had no idea it would get that reaction. I checked and there was nothing else with that name. As a big fan of Scifi, especially military sci-fi, I didn't get that "UH-Oh" feeling when I chose it. FYI, the first working title was 'Whispers', until I googled it! Perhaps I'm Title impaired! Seriously, Metamorphosis has that Kafka insinuation which I rather liked.
Nothing wrong with a little Kafka of course.
 

Thande

Shadow Minister for Generic Nice Things
Published by SLP
#16
Haha! I don't think it's a huge issue, you have a good cover image which will attract readers anyway.
I mean given how the Infallible Algorithm frequently fills the 'Alternate History' genre with completely unrelated books (as both you and @David Flin frequently update us on) we're probably making a mountain out of a molehill here anyway.