This year has seen lots of changes for me and my lovely wife/editor/formatter/publicist/all-around go-to girl Beth. As the books have done well enough (thanks to all of you, dear readers) I quit my job in the DC area and we moved out to the mountains of Utah to be near family, and we love the scenery, the fresh air (minus the skunks) and the slower pace of life. Fewer than twenty cars drive by our house on an average day, I’d say. It’s great for the writing and for our stress level. Our first grandchild saw the light of day less than a month ago, which is quite the life transition as well. He’s doing well, as are his mom and dad.
At the same time I’ve completed several projects, or nearly so. The Eden Plague had finally been published in audiobook format, narrated by Roger Wayne, who’s an up-and-coming television and movie actor. He did a great job. Unfortunately he is too busy with his other work to be able to meet my narration timelines, so I found another great actor/narrator, Artie Sievers, who will be able to bring the rest of the Plague Wars/Stellar Conquest series to life at the rate of about 1 audiobook per month. Reaper’s Run is already available, and Demon Plagues is under review for publication and so should be available within about two weeks.
Available now for pre-order in ebook format, Skull’s Shadows will be the next audiobook he does for me, probably available around October 1st. SS is a new Plague Wars book that follows Skull right after the events of The Eden Plague in the same way Reaper’s Run followed Jill Repeth. It’s co-authored with Ryan King, and is a bit darker and edgier than other Plague Wars books, meant for mature audiences for its violence and language. I hope Ryan and I will be working on more Plague Wars books to fit into the “Lost Decade” between Infection Day and the opening of Demon Plagues. It’s highly speculative, but I hope we can do a book centering on Spooky Nguyen, and then perhaps another combining all three – Jill, Spooky and Skull – and more for a larger post-apocalyptic story of the Free Communities Armed Forces to fight the authoritarian regimes extending across the globe.
I also plan on publishing at least one more Stellar Conquest book, tentatively titled Conquest and Empire, as the alliance of Human, Ryss, Sekoi and Meme turn the tables on the xenocidal Sourge. Using the captured faster-than-light technology, Task Force Conquest and many of the characters you’ve come to know and love will go on the offensive once more.
BV Larson and I are also putting the finishing touches on Exile, Star Force Book 11. It should be out in mid to late September if all goes well, and it continues the story of Cody Riggs, son of the great Star Force Marine Kyle Riggs as he leads the crew of the lost battlecruiser Valiant in their quest to get home. I won’t give away too much, but I will tell you this story will answer some of the fans’ many questions about the various aliens encountered in Book 10, Outcast, as well as revealing a great deal about the Ancients, who are presumed to have built the ring network. All of your old favorites are there – Cody, Kwon, Hoon and of course Marvin – as well as the supporting cast and some new characters. We expect it will be another fantastic chapter in one of the greatest space opera/mil-sci-fi series in all of modern science fiction.
Cheers and happy reading to everyone,