It’s Official. I’ve gone from being an author of “over 20 books” to “over 30!” Last Valentine’s Day release of the 10th Liquid Cool novel, You’ll Never See Starlight Again, marks my 31st book! (The 29th was The UFO Case and 30th was A Cruel Cyber Summer Night. That’s three Liquid Cool novels in two months). Thank you for all your support.
It all began 10 years ago. The plan was simply to write and publish one book to scratch off my bucket list, then move on. Clearly, I was delusional. That one book opened my creative flood gates beyond anything I could have imagined. The reality was that I should have always been writing. After all, I wrote my first book (a short story) at age three and I was writing 100-plus mystery novels in middle school. When I turned 18, I stopped, which I shouldn’t have done. But understandable at the time because I enlisted in the US Army.
To date, I have five series:
The After Eden Series
Of all the series I picked to launch my author career, I couldn’t have chosen a more daunting one. After not writing a word of fiction in over fifteen years, I picked up the pen (or the laptop) in 2011 to write my first novel, Thy Kingdom Fall. Actually, that’s not true. My first published novel was Thy Kingdom Fall, but my actual first written novel to be published was Stars and Scorpions, Book 2 in the series. I only realized that it was the second book when I finished it, then had to write its “prequel,” which was really the book before it.
The uniqueness of the After Eden Series is that it attempts to do something different in science fiction. It attempts to directly link current affairs and project them out, in this case, seventy-plus years in the future. I’ve been very good at predicting trends all my life and with this series a very realistic and dystopian world is presented. Starting with this series was like saying I wanted to start mountain climbing and picking Mount Everest as my first one.
Why did I take a break? Honestly, I didn’t think I was good enough, yet. I did the first half of the series but felt I needed to write about 1 million words of fiction in other works to finetune my craft before returning. Well, I’ve written 3 million words of fiction in other works since then. So, yes, I’m more than ready to complete the series.
The Sleepy Hollow Horrors Series
I had always loved The Legend of Sleepy Hollow story as a kid, and especially the Old Disney cartoon movie. My second series would be my take on the classic horror tale with a touch of historical fiction. I was born and raised in New York, and the legends and myths of colonial and pre-colonial America, including Native Americans is fascinating.
I like horror, but most horror today is…crap. Silly, stupid, and gratuitously gruesome are the three normal categories they fall into. In film, I have to go back to the 1970s and 1980s for ‘classics.’ In books, for example, Stephen King is a favorite, but I still think I like his earlier work better.
So back in 2013, I decided that I’d try my hand at writing in the genre. For anyone who has read my science fiction After Eden Series, I already have elements of horror (and mystery).
For my first horror novel, I decided not to create something new, but to go back 30 years to a short story I wrote as a child of a favorite tale—The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. I probably was more influenced by the 1949 Disney movie short, than the original Washington Irving book.
My short story was surprisingly close to my 2013-2014 outline. The Sleepy Hollow Horrors duology is in four parts. My childhood short story only had the first, but the main thrust of the story was the same and so was the main character.
The Liquid Cool Series
Clearly my most popular of my series. This year fans were treated to the concluding release of the Liquid Cool mini-series, From the Crazy Maniac Files, with The UFO Case (Book 3), the mini-series Box Set, another free Liquid Cool novella, A Cruel Cyber Summer Night, to introduce new readers to the sci-fi noir series; and book 10 in the main series with You’ll Never See Starlight Again, which definitely has a James Bond-ish undertone because I’d originally planned have it come out two years ago with the release of the James Bond movie, No Time to Die.
Liquid Cool was envisioned to be the complete opposite of the After Eden Series. Liquid Cool would be a sci-fi series that would be light, action-filled, and dripping with humor. I first presented the new series as being of the sci-fi sub-genre called cyberpunk. Technically, the series is more sci-fi noir than true cyberpunk, but I kept the description. However, as always, I put my own spin the genre.
You can read the earliest blog post of the new Liquid Cool universe, with Cruz and company, I was creating here:
The Fabled Quest Chronicles
Well, this one is your fault – my VIP Readers’ Club members. I asked what other genre you’d like to see me write and at the top of the list was epic fantasy. So, my Lord of Ring-like epic with a touch of sci-fi was born. What was supposed to be a trilogy turned into a six-book series with a prequel. The series concluded with Kingdom at Titan’s End (Fabled Quest Chronicles, Book 6). But…
There will be two more prequels, and since I did so for the Liquid Cool series, I’ll create a free novella for this series too. However, for those who are fans of this series, the adventures of Traveler, his “dog,” and Titan’s Caravan will continue in the future with Volume Two.
You can read about the top 10 themes for this series here:
Now comes the Planet Tamer Series!
This time it will be Military Sci-Fi! As Wikipedia puts it: a subgenre of both Science Fiction and Military Fiction, commonly sliding into the Space Opera territory. Book One, Father’s Day, was released last year as a preview to the full series.
As always, I put my own unique spin on a genre or sub-genre. With the conclusion of my epic fantasy series, The Fabled Quest Chronicles, I wanted to jump back into sci-fi with both feet and all four arms (just kidding). So, I once again polled my fans again to get feedback on what new genre they’d like to see me write and the result was overwhelmingly in favor of Military Sci-Fi.
This project has an additional hook for me because I served in the military myself. What do I imagine the US (or world) armed forces will look like in the far future? What role will the military play in space exploration? What unseen ways will technological advancement transform the military, space exploration, and us?
The other reason for this new series jumping ahead of a couple of others is because I want have a Kindle Unlimited Series to reach a newer sci-fi audience.
Liquid Cool and the Fabled Quest Chronicles were only two of the four new series I mapped out in 2015. After Planet Tamers, I will launch those two other series and finally wrap up the After Eden Series!
What do you think? Leave a comment below.
Austin Dragon is the author of over 30 books in science fiction, fantasy, and classic horror. His works include the sci-fi detective LIQUID COOL series, the epic fantasy FABLED QUEST CHRONICLES, the international futuristic epic AFTER EDEN Series, the classic SLEEPY HOLLOW HORRORS, and new military sci-fi PLANET TAMERS series. He is a native New Yorker but has called Los Angeles, California home for more than twenty years. Words to describe him, in no particular order: U.S. Army, English teacher, one-time resident of Paris, ex-political junkie, movie buff, Fortune 500 corporate recruiter, renaissance man, futurist, and dreamer.