Shadows of Evil is book #89 in the AI Lore books series.

It is an adaptation of the Sesame Street dystopian sci fi 70s film stills I made using Midjourney. It’s a subset of those images, as I didn’t want the book itself to be overly Sesame-ish. The backstory has been modified somewhat from the original Imgur post that holds the larger set. In the book, there is a depressed industrial city called Umbra, on the outskirts of which a strange explosion occurs in a chemical plant.

As a result of the explosion, somehow or other (ample handwavium), there is a children’s show being broadcast nearby at the same time, called The Wonderful World of Giggles. And as a result, characters from the universe of that show end up coming through a rift between dimensions into the city of Umbra. Since the monsters, the Giggles, are no longer constrained by the alternate dimension which held them, they end up causing havoc in Umbra, including a great deal of violence. Spurred on by that is the rise of a fascist group called the Regime which uses this turmoil to rise to power and enforce its own brutal regime, which it turns out is in league with some of the higher-up Giggles.

The text started out in Anthropic’s Claude, but I ran into a number of instruction-following problems with it, and switched over to ChatGPT running v4 to finish the rest. I liked Claude cause it seemed kind of fresh at first, but the more I’ve used it, the worse I think the instruction following is on this version. I believe there is a newer one coming out (or already out? v 1.3 I believe), and perhaps that is better, but I’m not sure how to activate it on my account…

Again, all the images are Midjourney. I have just straight up stopped using other image generation tools, because there’s no point in fiddling around with partial or lower quality when the results are as good and easy as they are in MJ. Midjourney has also opened up a lot of storytelling dimensions for me (#AIcinema), where most of the new books start now as image series before anything. Exploring those parts of the latent space gives me a strong narrative current, which I can then flesh out in AI tools for text.