If you watch Empire Strikes Back and then Return of the Jedi, you can see the former is truly a more mature story while the latter is pretending to be mature in the first half. The former is a true classic, but the latter really isn't so great and was even criticized when it first came out. As an aspiring storyteller, I've grown to dislike Return of the Jedi more and more as I grow older, while Empire Strikes Back gets better and better, and I used to hate that movie.
You don't need to show mature content in order to talk about it. For example, does a long and vivid sex scene provide any necessary information about the effects of an affair? No. You can fully and effectively discuss a topic without necessarily showing it. In fact, if you show it, then you probably will actually distract from the topic.
My intent for Neostriker is that there will occasionally be mature stories, but not inappropriate content. There will be no sex scenes and even foul language will be in check. Even if there is language, I will likely use fictional words instead in order to bring attention to the underlying psychology and not promote use of actual bad language.
Why this self-censoring? Because as storytellers, we also hold responsibility for promoting good, but not even all good things are appropriate for all ages. Just as honey is dangerous for an infant, so too some concepts are dangerous for those who are not yet mature enough. As you can see from the short story on preventing suicide, there will be darker themes popping up now and then. I consider these fair topics as they are something a youth will encounter and I hope to provide a good model for then. As a result, I plan to mark the more mature stories so that it's encouraged for those too young to discuss the story with their parents. However, I do intend to continue to encourage thinking in all the stories, like is seen throughout Shining.
Will my new stories always be dark and mature? Not according to what I have in mind. I plan to write according to the stories I have in mind, and some series will lean towards certain levels of maturity. Though I think a good age to strive for is ones that adolescents will appreciate. If you consider that as the target group for Empire Strikes Back or Spider-Man 2, then you realize that you can actually make good stories while still being mature.
Hope you look forward to the new stories.
J. D. Nyle