Greetings, Loyal Reader!
I had a couple of great comments today from Loyal Readers over at the Dan McGirt page on Facebook. (If you’re on Facebook, please join us there!)
Loyal Reader Luke wants to know when the movie is coming out. No one from Hollywood has called yet. I think the Jason Cosmo books would work better as animated features than as live action, but I am open to all offers!
Longtime Loyal Reader Mark has a deeper question. Having read the original books many times, he finds some of the changes in story details and wording I made in Hero Wanted (versus Jason Cosmo) distracting. He asks why I decided to make so much change? An excellent question!
You can read my answer at the Dan McGirt Facebook page, but I’ll restate it here for the benefit of all Loyal Readers.
As I’ve discussed previously, I did the revision of Jason Cosmo over several years, so the changes came gradually. I originally set out to simply correct a few typos. Then I decided to add some new scenes and drop a few things in to better set up events of the later books. I then let the manuscript sit for a year or two.
When I was getting the book ready for publication earlier this year, I went through line by line, tweaking dialogue and language. In my mind, these were all improvements. I feel I’m a better writer than I was in 1987-88, when I wrote Jason Cosmo. While that may be open to debate, I am certainly a different writer. So given the opportunity to revisit and revise my original prose, I did so.
As I hope I’ve made clear by now, Hero Wanted is not an exact reprint of Jason Cosmo. But neither is it a brand new story. It is a retelling or reimagining, hence the new title.
I think of it this way: there are lots of books about, say, the life of Alexander the Great, each telling the same basic story but in different ways, with different details, and different emphasis. There are also many versions of the Greek myths, the tales of King Arthur, etc. For the comic book geeks out there, you might think of the Non-Trilogy as the Earth-1 version and the Hero Wanted continuity as Earth-2. They are very similar, but not identical, yet both are valid.
For Loyal Readers who have read the original Non-Trilogy books more than once–and possibly more than I have–and consider them among your favorites, I can imagine any changes to the text are jarring. Just like watching the retouched versions of the original Star Wars trilogy is a bit annoying and distracting to me. I totally get that.
I did ponder for a long time whether to make real changes in the story. In the end I decided to go ahead and deviate from the original Non-Trilogy text where it made sense to me. I decided that doing so was in the true tradition of Jason Cosmo. To ME, the “original” version of Jason Cosmo is in the the handwritten stories I passed around to my friends in middle and high school–those Original Loyal Readers without whose support the book might never have come about.
I also wrote a rebooted version of Jason Cosmo in high school which, come to think of it, was a little less popular than the first run of stories. My point is, the published Non-Trilogy was actually, for me, the third incarnation of Jason Cosmo, making Hero Wanted the start of the fourth version.
For longtime Loyal Readers, I hope that you will enjoy this new run of Jason Cosmo adventures. I hope it continues for years to come. With your support, it will. I would not have made the commitment to bring Jason Cosmo back to print if it were not for the many encouraging emails and other messages I’ve received from longtime Loyal Readers over the years. I am also hoping to win many new Loyal Readers as the Cosmoverse expands.
If you prefer the original Non-Trilogy version of Jason Cosmo to the retelling in Hero Wanted, I understand and I appreciate your loyalty to the “classic” version. I warn you now there will be similar changes when I get to the revisions of Royal Chaos and Dirty Work — but I hope you’ll come along for the ride and I hope you’ll enjoy the stories to come as much I plan to enjoy writing them for you!