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Ashia: The Rebels and The Conquerors Now Available!

My story with Ashia goes back many years--even before Austin Stone and the Star Runners' story!

Long ago, when I was much younger, I was enthralled with the possibility of an alien invasion tale combined with a medieval fantasy setting. After hours of daydreaming, I had this image of a massive starship entering the atmosphere before crashing to the ground. An army spilled out, and an epic battle raged on the sand. I couldn't shake this thought for years and tucked it into my back pocket for later. I even went as far as creating a world bible for this desert planet I had not yet named, coming up with how the society worked and how the people interacted.

Again, it went into my files, and I left it alone.

My first crack at writing the tale came in the form of a short novella named "Out of the Ashia Sands." I wrote this in the early 2000s, probably around 2001 when I moonlighted as an aspiring author while working a day job with a small newspaper. Friends and family liked the results and told me to publish it.

You will be interested in hearing how different the publishing world was back in 2001 and social media was still in the future. Submitting work was usually done with paper copies in the mail while some early webzines accepted digital copies (how cutting edge!).

Like any author will tell you, I didn't hear much at first. The silence stretched into weeks. A few editors had the decency to send rejection letters, while others said nothing. It finally received some kind feedback from the trade magazines (while still rejecting the story. It came very close to appearing in an anthology, but the editors ultimately chose another shorter story. They said it had to do with the story's length and asked me to resubmit for a future publication, but I never did.

Years went passed. Life interfered with dreams as it tends to do. I was not as aggressive in sending out my work as I once was.

I never stopped writing fiction. I finished several short stories and a couple of novels, always intending to publish them traditionally through a publishing house or agent (maybe both).

But I didn't send any work out save an early copy of what would become Ghost--and even then, I only sent one physical copy to a New York publishing house.

What was I waiting for--a lightning bolt from the sky or burning bush to grandly tell me to send my work to an agent or publisher?

I don't know. Fear was undoubtedly a part of it, I suppose. I also had demanding day jobs over the years.

So I had many stories as drafts waiting to be published when a few events happened in 2012-2013 to force me to act. The short version is that I started planning on publishing all my linked stories. If you want to know more about that era, click here for some additional details.

When Star Runners hit the scene on Christmas Day in 2014, I did not expect anyone except friends and family to read it. Then, people bought copies, and the Star Runners Universe was on its way.

After publishing the first four entries in the primary Legion storyline, I returned to Ashia and finished that trilogy before writing Dark Space and Galactic War back-to-back. Ashia is much different than Star Runners, and that was the whole point. I always intended each Star Runners book to be different than the last. If they were all the same, I thought you and I would get bored. I joked via email with a reader recently, writing, "If I get bored writing the story, what's the point of all this?"

The third book, The Rebels and The Conquerors, in the Ashia trilogy, is now available as an eBook at your favorite online retailer. The paperback version will be released soon.

I know authors always say things like this, but the third Ashia was my absolute favorite of the three. I loved writing about the clash of Ashia versus the invading Zahlian force. Many real-world events throughout history inspired the telling of that story, and the result was even better than I could have imagined. I am so happy with the way it links up to Star Runners: Galactic War!

Copyright 2021

Published by Shadow Max Publishing.