The Story Behind Iron Souls

From alchemy to magical metallurgy… My new steampunk flavored fantasy is a bit different from the urban fantasy I’ve written before, but those who have given it a chance seem taken with the unusual setting and unique magic system. I’ve had quite a few folks ask about the inspiration behind this story, so I thought a blog post was in order. An Epic Journey On a Slow Moving Boat Back in 2010, I discovered steampunk and decided I’d like to try my hand at writing one—once I finished my Final Formula series. My first consideration was where to set the story. One of the defining features of steampunk is the Victorian setting, but I wasn’t comfortable writing a story set in London. I wanted to keep it closer to home. But what was going on in Ohio during the late 1800s? Then it hit me. What if the story was set on a canal boat? As with my Final Formula story, I was once again taking the familiar and giving it a magical twist. The overgrown bed of Ohio & Erie Canal is just a few miles from my house, and with today’s modern roads still following its path, I travel along it everyday on my way to work or into town. Though it ceased operations after the flood of 1913, there were people alive when I was a child who remembered the boats. The old timers even called the road into town the towpath. But I needed more than a setting, I needed some characters and a conflict. With my story set on a canal boat, I decided to make my main character a boat captain. The conflict would deal with the railroad because the two transportation systems were in competition, and since I was shooting for steampunk, I needed some gadgets and advanced tech, which is where the magic came in. What if I had a race of people who could create a magical alloy that gave them a technology more advanced than the steam power of their day? And what if one of them was working for the railroad? Voilà! Ferromancy was born. But had I written a steampunk story? By definition,...

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Iron Souls Two: Release Date

Soul Singer: Iron Souls, Book Two releases on February 26th, but it’s available for preorder now. Here’s the cover, blurb, and link… Captain Bridget “Briar” Rose only wanted to stop the railroad’s expansion and save the canal life she loves. She didn’t intend to make herself and her crew outlaws, or stumble into a magical world she knew nothing about. And she certainly didn’t mean to damn a man, but that’s exactly what she did to Grayson, a brilliant railroad engineer who turned out to be much more than he seemed. To set matters straight, Briar is on her way to Cleveland to meet with a woman who may be able to help Grayson. But getting there won’t be easy. Wanted posters are everywhere, an old…friend is stalking Grayson, and he’s attracted the attention of the Scourge—the executioners of the ferromancer world. If she’s to keep Grayson safe, Briar must pretend to be his keeper. Which won’t be easy. Not when she knows so little about his world and her own newly discovered magic. Can she fool those who know that world so well? Or will Grayson pay the price for her failure? Read an except here: Soul Singer Preorder a copy here:...

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New Year, New Series

Happy New Year! It’s hard to believe another year has come and gone. Is it just me, or does each year seem to pass a little more quickly? But a new year is a chance for a new beginning and this year, I’m taking that to heart. I’m excited to be launching my Iron Souls series and I hope you’ll join me on the ride. A canal boat ride, that is. In case you’ve missed me rattling on about it, Iron Souls is a steampunk-flavored fantasy set on an Ohio & Erie Canal boat in the late 1800s. The first book, Ferromancer, was released in a multi-author bundle last year, but the book is now mine to send out into the world on its own. Speaking of new things, I’m going to give Kindle Unlimited a try. It requires exclusivity with Amazon for 90 days, so that’s the only place this series will be available initially. I know that everyone doesn’t buy from Amazon, so I’m going to make each book available on Smashwords (where you can purchase the book in the format you need) for a few days prior to releasing the book on Amazon. Once the entire series is out (I’m planning a five book series), I’ll publish the books in all the usual places. Thanks in advance for your patience while I give this new publishing avenue a try. That said, Ferromancer is already live and currently available on Amazon and Smashwords. I plan to move it into Kindle Unlimited in February, and will be releasing the second book the same month. I’ll share a release date for book two as soon as I have one. Meanwhile, I’ve already started posting snippets over on my Facebook page. UPDATE – Ferromancer is no longer available on Smashwords, but it is available in Kindle Unlimited. Here’s the cover, blurb, and retailer links for Ferromancer: Captain Bridget “Briar” Rose wants for nothing. Each day is a new adventure, living the life she loves, running cargo on the Ohio & Erie Canal. That is, until her cousin decides to sell the family boat to finance a new business venture. He wants to build locomotives for the...

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December Book Fair

The authors of the Dominion Rising Boxed Set are hosting a book fair that runs through December 15th. With over 100 fantasy and science fiction books for just 99c or free in Kindle Unlimited, it’s a great opportunity to do a little holiday shopping for yourself. You can find this super sale on Lisa Blackwood’s website here. Happy...

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A Halloween Sale and What’s Coming Next

Happy Halloween! I must admit, this is my favorite time of year. The trees have started to turn, the temperature is dropping, and we get to celebrate a holiday dedicated to all things creepy. And if you know me at all, you know that I like the spooky stuff.  😉 In honor of the holiday, Blood Gifts, my Final Formula prequel story is on sale for $0.99 until November 5th. This novella offers a glimpse into the early years of fan favorite, Ian Mallory, and also includes the short story, Lords of the Dead. (I originally posted Lords of the Dead on my website here.) If you haven’t had a chance to grab a copy of Blood Gifts, now’s a great time to get it cheap. Here’s the cover, blurb, and retailer links: Seventeen-year-old Ian is used to pressure. Born into a necromancer family, he and his twin brother Lex exhibited uncommon magical potential at an early age that led their father to expect great things—from them both. That is until Lex’s blood gift fails to manifest. Or so everyone believes. For the past five years, Ian has been keeping a secret. A secret that—if it got out—would see his brother shunned, or worse. Lex does have a blood gift, but not every gift is a blessing, and not every recipient can manage the talent in his blood. As Lex’s sanity begins to slip, Ian knows the responsibility to raise his family’s fortunes is on his shoulders, and his alone. When he is offered an apprenticeship with one of the most influential men in the necromancer community, Lex convinces Ian that the connection would offer their family even more if Ian were to marry his elderly mentor’s “spinster” niece. Ian’s plan takes an unexpected turn when he discovers that Isabelle is not a spinster. She’s a young, beautiful, intelligent woman who, unfortunately, wants nothing to do with him. Now Ian must find a way to win her over before Lex attempts to elevate their family, his way. Pick up a copy here: Amazon | Kobo | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords | Apple … If you missed my recent post on Facebook, I’m currently busy writing the next two novels in my Iron Souls series. I...

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