Welcome to my first preview of what to expect in The Starsea Cycle! Without revealing crucial spoilers, of course.
I’ve revealed precious little about it so far other than the title, the series title, and the cover art for the first book. Some of you may not even know whether this is the kind of book you would even like, as it will be somewhat of a departure from Wasteland Chronicles and Xenoworld.
So in this post, I wanted to focus on the series itself: what it’s about, the genre, and how many books I’m planning. And, the most important part, when they’ll be out!
So strap on your seatbelt (or spaceship safety harness) and we’ll get started!
Is there anything more exciting than a good old-fashioned Space Opera? Well, I’d warrant there is not. From Star Wars, Star Trek, Dune, or to currently popular series such as The Expanse, there’s something about the vastness of space and the unknown that has appealed to many people.
I’ve always wanted to build my own Space Opera universe from scratch, even if there are millions of others already out there. Like so many works of science fiction and fantasy, I wanted my main character to start from humble origins while struggling to overcome his own flaws as more and more responsibility gets foisted upon him as the series progresses.
I doubt Starsea will ever be even 1% as popular as those heavy hitters, but my goal is to do the best I can in crafting an epic universe to get lost in, amazing characters you’ll want to hang out with, along with an unforgettable quest that takes place over a very long saga of books.
Why don’t we begin with the title? Unfortunately, revealing what it truly means is a bit of a spoiler, but suffice it to say, it does make sense in the context of the entire series. I can say this much: it’s a play on the very common trope in science fiction that space is an ocean. There are spaceships, space fleets, captains and admirals, long journeys between ports (planets), among numerous other parallels.
And the title of book one, The Mages of Starsea? Well, this series has mages. And space. And both are quite central to the plot. Very straightforward!
As you can see, this is most definitely not a pure science fiction series, nor is straight up epic fantasy. Most fantasy doesn’t have spaceships, space stations, or a real world setting (albeit in the distant future).
However, my series will combine elements of the two in what I hope to be a seamless blend. As such, the genre can be considered Science Fantasy, something right smack dab in the middle of the Science Fiction and Fantasy continuum.
So, why are there mages? I don’t want to give too much away, but I will say here that in the series, magic-users start being born for reasons unknown around the year 2250. By the time the book picks up in 2364, they’ve been around for more than a century.
Magic is just called magic in Starsea Cycle, though scientist types uncomfortable with that term call it “meta-energy.” The term “meta” has come to mean something much different in modern society (i.e. “That’s so meta.”) But the actual meaning of the word can be traced back to the ancient Greek, where it means “after” or “beyond.” Which is fitting in the context of magic in The Starsea Cycle, since magic is energy taken from “beyond,” from another reality called “The Manifold.” This is similar to the Force in Star Wars, though magic in Starsea Cycle is a bit more useful than the Force. But also more dangerous . . .
This series follows the main character, Lucian Abrantes, whose life is upended the day he discovers he is a mage. He must set his entire life aside to seek training for his powers at a magic academy on the planet Volsung. If he doesn’t receive training, he will fall victim to the fraying, a disease effecting mages that destines them to insanity and death.
So I guess you could say there’s a little of Star Wars, a little of Wheel of Time, a little of Marvel’s Avengers. And hopefully combining the ingredients of all three makes for something that can at least pay homage to all three and stand on its own.
So, how many books? Well, my hope is twelve! I even have titles for all of them, but I’m only willing to share the first three here: The Mages of Starsea, The Orb of Binding, and The Rifts of Psyche.
And when can we expect them to come out? Well, The Mages of Starsea will come out in mid-January, while books two and three will come out in February and March respectively. And I plan to release each novel after that in two month intervals.
It’s a lot of work, but I’m already a good ways into writing book three while book two is nearly ready for its first round of proofing. That means I’m very ahead of schedule!
Thanks for reading this overly long post. In my next post a few days from now, I will share a bit of Starsea’s magic system, something that every decent fantasy series needs.