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The website I had always wished for.

So, I’ve made some pretty significant progress with The Final Book lately. I started building a new highly visual and immersive website for the story. The goal is that it will be a usable version of Dr. Hork’s HUD — Human Utopian Database — where readers can experience a much more in-depth version of the story. Not only will the website contain the entire Gods novel, but it will also include character profiles and supplemental content. It’s slowly turning into the website I had always dreamed to make a decade+ ago, but never had the skills, resources, time, or ability to attempt.

What makes special is its imagery. It’s a highly visual website, and it needs to be. With the use of AI, this is now a possibility.

Originally, I had thought that I might hire an illustrator to create a few images of just the core characters. Maybe I could find some stock photography to work. Ultimately, without hiring an illustrator to build out the entire universe, it was going to be hokey. Without the ability to draw myself, there was going to be no way to create anything visual related to this story… until now.

With the use of AI, I can now show you The Final Book universe. It’s not perfect, but it’s about 85% there — and that’s amazing. It’s so awesome to have a tool that allows me to type — to describe the image I want, including tone and feeling — and then have AI create an image based upon my prompts. Sometimes it does things better than I imagined. And, as time goes on, it’s only getting better.

Joshua Bach of The Final Book. Image created by Adobe Firefly.

Someday, AI will read my story and then construct a movie or animation based on it. Without the cost of a production studio, and with no restraints or limits on time, AI could act out the exact book word for word. Everyone always says that the book is better than the movie, well, now, nothing is lost. It’s an amazing proposition and I hope to one day see it.

I’m also using AI to help fill out the HUD. The database needs content; character profiles, additional artifacts sprinkled across human history, notifications, and easter eggs that perfectly accompany the novels. To write all of this material on my own would take an extraordinary amount of time. It wouldn’t be possible to ever write another novel. So, I’m having AI do it for me.

With that said, each AI written bit meets my approval. I’m the one who creates the prompts for what I want written, and it what style / voice. And, naturally, I even go in and re-write some of the material to better support the novels. While mostly AI created, the supplemental content is highly curated and is a really cool expansion of the universe. It's also a showcase of what this AI can do as a storyteller.

Further, I’m adding an element that will allow fans to take a piece of the story home with them. Some of the AI artwork is so spectacular and does a great job of replicating a character or moment that it’s worthy of a print. Or NFT. I won’t lie — I’d really like this writing and world building thing to start paying the bills. Finding a way to monetize The Final Book without being obnoxious or detrimental to the story has been challenging. But, now, I think offering fans an authentic, numbered image from the story could be a cool thing. You’d truly be getting something cool, and in return I get to continue creating this universe — the purchase would directly support the project and ensure more content comes in the future.

The plan is to “slow” release each chapter. Currently, the first three chapters, along with primary character profiles, and fun supplemental content are live on the site now. Each week, a new chapter, along with its relevant bonus content will also be posted. It’s still a lot of work, but it’s now possible. I’m really excited about that.

Lastly, the use of AI has been mind blowing and I’ve learned a lot implementing it into storytelling. I’d like to start documenting some of that and sharing it with those interested. We’ll see. I’m doing a bit of that now over on X. And, finally, if all of this is possible for The Final Book, just think what I have in store for The Ballad of Stevie Pearl…

Dr. Hork in The Final Book. Image created by Adobe Firefly.