Michael Grant is a highly prolific author in the young adult fiction space, with over 150 books to his name. Grant worked on the popular Animorphs and Everworld series with his wife Katherine Applegate and recently went on to release the Gone series on his own. For his newest project, Go BZRK, Grant is trying something different: he’s attempting a project that “was fully conceived as a multi-platform experience with the books only being one aspect of a bigger picture.”
In a Q&A on Go BZRK‘s meta-site, Grant explains that the project is an experiment in transmedia storytelling that extends across websites, blogs, a mobile app, and video. The BZRK novel itself is slated for publication in Winter 2012 under the Egmont Publishing label, but the alternate reality game has already started, with content slowly trickling out over the month of August as the story ramps up at month’s end, “just in time to distract the kids from their schoolwork.” While the story hasn’t begun in earnest yet, the tantalizing tastes offered so far already present a rich cast of over-the-top characters that dominate the experience.
So far, the plot centers around the cult Nexus Humanus. The cult’s spokesperson, Armand Cage, founded the organization after failing at his previous careers as a Canadian meteorologist and a stand-up comic. Mixing the very worst traits of both professions, Cage promotes the cult with an earnest enthusiasm that leads one character to describe him as “like some kind of hypnotized Mr. Rogers.” Cage’s overly personable demeanor is offset by Nexus Humanus’ perpetually stiff president, Billie Carloff.