by Eric R. Asher
Series: Steamborn #3
Publication: April 5th 2016
The world dies in war only to be reborn. It is the way of things, and always will be.
Forged in the Deadlands crucible, and armed with the knowledge of their true enemy, Jacob, Alice, and their allies bring the fight back to Ancora. They’ll liberate their homeland, or die trying.
The wounds cut deep in their darkest hour, but in the end, vengeance will light their path.
~Q&A with Eric R. Asher~
What books have most influenced your life?
There have been a great many, but I always come back to Black Sun Rising by C.S. Friedman. It’s a masterful blend of SF/F that is incredibly dark and full of hope all at once. Northworld by David Drake is another I love to reread. I have a cycle of favorites that I love though, including Patricia Briggs, J.K. Rowling, Tad Williams, Melanie Rawn, and more.
How do you develop your plots and characters?
The characters develop more and more as I write the story. It’s not uncommon for me to go back and adjust the characters in the earlier scenes after I finish the story. Inspiration for the plots can come from just about anything; movies, video games, an interesting shadow cast by a leaf, anything.
Tell us about your protagonist. What was the inspiration?
Jacob and Alice are both so important to this story in my head. They’re both reminiscent of the kinds of characters I loved to read when I was younger. Jacob has a brash attitude that gets him into trouble, and a quick wit to usually get him out of it. Alice provides some much needed common sense. That’s not to say Alice doesn’t get into the thick of things, because she very much does.
What about the Butcher?
Ah yes, the villain. I love villains. I love unexpected villains that you never see coming, but I also love the villain that lurks in the shadows. He’s not front and center, but he’s always behind the scenes manipulating things in usually terrible ways.
What was your favorite chapter (or part) to write and why?
The airship battle is one of my favorite scenes in Steamsworn. The characters take a huge gamble going up against a fleet that has them seriously, comically, outgunned. It fits the group dynamic of being reckless and selfless all at once.
Did you learn anything from writing this book and what was it?
I learned a lot about mechanics. I especially learned how much I didn’t know about steam engines. It’s one of those things I had a rough understanding of, but actually getting some of the models in-hand and seeing some larger engines operating and broken down helped tremendously.
Is there a message in your novel that you hope readers will grasp?
There are a few messages woven throughout the trilogy, but I’d rather readers find their own messages.
I have two anthologies I’m currently involved in, and I’ll be writing the sixth Vesik book after that. I’m really excited to get back to Vesik after all the events in Destroyer Rising.
They ordered and waited in relative silence until Smith began drumming his fork on the wooden table.
“Stop that,” Mary said.
“What?” Smith asked as his tempo increased.
“It’s rude and you’re drawing attention to us.”
Smith sighed and let the fork fall from his hands, clattering onto the bare wood as the server dropped off three pewter steins, filled with a dark ale, and one glass of milk.
“Milk?” Alice asked. “Ugh, I thought you were joking.”
“Just try it,” Eva said. “It’s not bug milk, if that’s what you’re worried about.”
“She’s not worried about that,” Smith said. “The girl drinks Sweetwing tea like it’s water.”
Alice slid the glass closer and said, “I’m feeling a bit outnumbered here.” She took a tentative sip and jerked her head away from the straw, smacking her lips when the taste of cocoa and sugar hit her tongue. “What?”
“White Cocoa Milk,” Eva said. “It’s a lot better than the regular stuff.”
Alice took another deep drink. “Yeah it is. Wow.”
Smith started drumming his fork on the table again.
“Oh, gods!” Mary said. “Smith! Stop it. Drumming that fork into submission isn’t going to change anything about you meeting with the tinkers.”
~About the Author~
Eric is a former bookseller, guitarist, and comic seller currently living in Saint Louis, Missouri. A lifelong enthusiast of books, music, toys, and games, he discovered a love for the written word after being dragged to the library by his parents at a young age. When he is not writing, you can usually find him reading, gaming, or buried beneath a small avalanche of Transformers.
Eric’s Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads
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