I’d mentioned something of this on my Facebook page recently and figured enough time had passed since my time writing the FURY OF FIRESTORM: THE NUCLEAR MEN series at DC to post this archival stuff.
If you recall (or in case you don’t), I’d come on board the FIRESTORM book at issue #7, co-plotting with Ethan Van Sciver and scripting the series, before taking over the book completely for the rest of the first “New 52” year. Most of this material never made it into the book, but the hooks for a lot of it were being laid beginning in issues #7 and #8. The idea of having “International Firestorms” was begun by the original team of Ethan and Gail Simone, with Yildiray Cinar on art. Coming on board, I inherited a lot of ideas and notions and started building out some possibilities, from those, charting a long-view course into the future (both figuratively, and literally, as you’ll see if you check out the material at the bottom of this post).
Things got changed around a bit, and I had to do a lot of rewriting to fit shifting plans, sudden crossovers, and other changes made on high, so much of this stuff never saw the light of day. One idea I’d come up with, in which Zither — the character responsible for proliferating the Firestorm Protocols to those wealthy and powerful nations who wished to join the new nuclear arms race — possessed a “kill switch” to prevent the international Firestorms such as the new Firehawk, Hurricane, Rakshasi etc. from turning against her, was ultimately used to wind down the series and kill off these new characters we’d created per a DC editorial edict that came down later.
When editorial told me the new plan was to, basically, pull the plug on the “New 52” direction and wind things back closer to where they were left, pre-universe reboot, I was tasked with doing so in the #0 issue of the series.
And that was that for me and Firestorm.
The following flowchart-looking PDF is a “mindmap,” which I often make, using my iPad, when plotting out stories and outlining. For me, mindmaps add a visual component to breaking out the story while feeling entirely within and of the tablet. I’m a big iPad proponent and use it for just about every last aspect of writing, from the research and media consumption at the front end, to the actual word processing and writing, to, sometimes, the file delivery and transfer of files and elements when getting my own, creator-owned books wrapped and delivered to the publisher.
**Honestly, this map, while big, is conservative for me. You should see the master sheet I keep together for X-Files ideas!
This ‘outline’ isn’t broken down into issues. It’s much more of a rough visualization of different plot threads and concepts, character arcs, etc. we were going to explore in the series going forward. Further, it is based off of the original plans through issue #12… in which Ronnie and Jason, the two disagreeable Firestorms, would have taken on Pozhar, who’d sought to control Ronnie and gain access to the Quantum Field via the young man’s special connection which he coveted. Following this showdown, Ronnie and Jason, along with those Firestorms who survived, were to head into the mountains of northern Pakistan in search of a new villain named “Ashra Khan,” whom we were going to reveal was behind the “Rogue” Firestorms, a kind of Colonel Kurtz leading broken warriors fighting a war outside the war. And the conclusion of that story arc would have propelled us toward what’s being worked toward in this document.
I’m only sharing it because I think it’s a cool glimpse, for process junkies, into what might have been.
Apologies for any spelling and/or grammatical errors. I’m just presenting this working document “as is” because I think it looks cool and thought some might dig it.
The following image should get bigger when you make with the clicking…