Some Insights into The Survivors by Joshua David

With this year’s Ultimate Sale coming up, I thought I’d take some time to give some insights into my short story, The Survivors. Sort of like behind the scenes footage, author style. Hope you enjoy.

First off, this story is inspired by a friend of mine who used to work as a welder on the pipelines in Alaska. He was always flying back and forth across Alaska from place to place taking jobs for his company. I wanted to use this setting for the backdrop of my story.

Secondly, I love surprise endings, and twists. I love the Twilight Zone and such. Equally as important, I love John Carpenter’s The Thing and the dynamics of a creature trying to survive in the harshest of environments juxtaposed to a band of humans and their will to survive.

With those two elements tugging at my thoughts, I set out to write The Survivors.

As I’ve discussed in previous blogs, I use reoccurring characters in some of my books. In each case the character is a very new and independent character, not having encountered any events from an alternate storyline, however the name of the characters are reused depending on the subject matter for the book or story.

Richard McPhrey is my alien guy. Sometimes he’s the main character, as in Nowhere, but sometimes he’s a side character, as in The Survivors, and another short story, The Wanderer that I hope to get out there later in the closing months of this year.

In each case the Richard in the story is uniquely different from the Richard in any of the other stories save for the Name. As I publish more and more stories I hope this doesn’t become too confusing.

I consider The Survivors to be a wholly developed story in and of itself. I feel like even though it’s only around 35 pages long, it begins and ends where I wanted it to. That being said, I have tossed around the idea of revisiting the story and creating an expanded version. Sorta like a director’s cut of the same story. I just don’t know if it would be worth changing.

One thing that I’ve regretted over time, is my use of language in the story. I wrote this several years ago and nowadays I’m just in a different place with my writing. I decided with Nowhere, that I was not going to have harsh language in any of my stories or novels moving forward. I really don’t feel like curse words and offensive language is necessary in any part of a story. As an author, I feel that I can get the same point across using other words.

Now with that being said, I will still have violence, disturbing elements, and plenty of suspense and conflict between characters. I sincerely hope that doesn’t push anybody away from reading my work. The Survivors is a different story and may end up being my only story to ever contain harsh language.

The alternate cover above was some of the concept art that my brother, Zach Ashburn, created for me. Also below, here’s another alternate cover that Author Milo Abrams designed for me. Check both these talented guys out at the links attached to their names above.


I don’t want to give anything away, for those of you who haven’t read it. I really do hope you enjoy the read and take advantage of the sale coming up in a week or so. Please leave me feedback on Amazon if you read it, and follow me on my blog to keep current with my new and future projects.



One thought on “Some Insights into The Survivors by Joshua David

  1. I like to think that we are constantly becoming a newer, better, and more authentic version of ourselves with every day that goes by. I can’t even count the number of times I will reread something I wrote before and cringe or wonder who even wrote it. At the time, every time, I feel like I am doing my best, trying my hardest, and putting out the absolute best that I can… while at the same time, feeling like I’m not living up to my real potential.

    I’ve tried to expand short stories, flash fiction and even ideas into full fledged novels before with zero success. I’ve come to the conclusion, or at least have resigned to the fact that the best idea I’ve had is to just let everything be what it is. No matter how good an idea is that I have, I can’t imprison myself in the idea that it’s the best idea I’ve ever had. I don’t get to decide what is good or not, the world does. I only get to decide whether I like it.

    I understand what you mean about language, I don’t write anything about sex for the same reason. I will use curse words and foul language just because the characters aren’t me, and if they talk like that then they do, whether I choose to or not. But I treat the ideas of gore, sex and violence the way a movie might when something is implied, or happens off screen.

    All we can do is just make stories we like and put them out there for the world to decide whether they are good or not. I think you should keep moving forward. The Survivors is perfect for what it is and when you wrote it. As long as you keep moving forward then nothing will ever hold you back.


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