Thanks to Scott Baughman, who is busily working on his Balance of Power scifi series, I was invited to participate in a Writer’s Process Blog Tour. Each week a new set of writers answers four questions about what they are working on, and how and why. Scott’s on my Fiction Links page, along with a couple of other scifi authors whom I’ve invited to continue the blog tour chain next week (see below).
Question 1: What am I working on?
I’ve been working on the This Corner of the Universe series for well over a year now, and specifically I’ve just started the first draft of Book 4, Loyalty to the Cause. The series is part military science fiction and part space opera, with a sprawling star system map and three human political factions to contend with. However, TCOTU follows the personal journey of one man, Garrett Heskan, throughout this space. Heskan’s series will be five books long to complete his story.
Question 2: How does my work differ from others of its genre?
The first thing that comes to mind is I tend to weave my interest in military history into my stories, which might seem unusual in the science fiction genre. This Corner of the Universe (Book 1) has an “age of sail” flavor to it, and even paid homage to a classic battle of that era (I Have Not Yet Begun to Fight). No Way to Start a War (Book 2) carries a “birth of aviation” subplot throughout its story (About the F-3 Pup). The Wrong Side of Space (Book 3) introduced marines to the fray, and also has a line inspired by an interesting communication incident during a World War II sea battle (The Universe Wonders).
Question 3: Why do I write what I do?
As a long-time reader of science fiction, and a former Air Force officer, writing military scifi was a natural place for me to start. I do have backburner ideas in urban fantasy, but I think once Heskan’s story is complete there will still be a lot left to tell in the TCOTU universe.
Question 4: How does your writing process work?
I tend to think in arcs. I knew Heskan’s series would be five books long pretty early in the process, because I drew an arc and moving from the bottom of one side to the bottom of the other came out to five steps along the arc. When it comes to writing a new book, I tend to outline maybe the first 25% before I start writing now. It wasn’t always that way, but it’s how my process has evolved. On days I am stuck, I work on furthering the outline. It seems to be an efficient use of time.
One thing I love to do is support indie and small press authors, and to spread the word particularly about scifi projects. So, I reached out to a few folks and invited them to continue this writer’s tour chain next week:
Scott Moon writes across several genres, but I follow his Chronicles of Kin Roland scifi series. He’s just released Book 2, Son of Orlan, so I hope he tells you about that and what’s next for him next week.
Mark Bordner is just releasing a Book 2 as well, in his The Mighty First scifi series. You can find his answers next week over on his Facebook page.
DL MacKenzie writes the Magnetron Chronicles, a cross between scifi and steampunk and released serially. He’s also very actively supporting indie authors over at Fictivity Press.