Don't think about it! It's just turtles all the way down!
It began back before I'd accepted my life as an Indie Author instead of a Major League Publisher-Patting-You-on-the-Head Author (though given my sales this year I dare say Indie or not I've finally broken into at least the minor leagues!) when THE BETROTHAL was finished and languishing, THE FOUL MOUTH AND THE FANGED LADY was in my last edits, I was dicking around practicing with some fan fiction you lot will never see, and I didn't know what to do next.
It was the standing wisdom at the time that writing the second book of series before the series itself was published was a bad idea (again proving that the people who provide the standing wisdom for aspiring writers don't know what the hell they're really talking about) so starting right into THE FOUL MOUTH AND THE CAT KILLING COYOTES as a sequel seemed like a bad idea. I also had the problem that all my other books and worlds I'd come up with were also series based...so that wouldn't work, right?
So I majorly brainstormed and came up with about 10 standalone book ideas that I could work on. As is the nature of brainstorming, some of these ideas were much better than others or seemed more interesting than others, so I started in on writing what would one day become SKY-ISLAND 1827-E (alternate titles: ROCKETS IN THE SKY; WOE, WOE, WOE, YOUR SKYBOAT; and HERE COME THE CLOCKERS). I also piddled about with a book where the main character was a walking and talking tree, but like a walking, talking tree character would ever be usable or popular, right?!?!
Skip forward three years of Indiehood, four FOUL MOUTH books, an actual thing that might be a career and not a huge mistake, and looking at all those standalone books I realized...hey, these are all kind of about similar themes, aren't they? Wouldn't it be cool if they were kind of connected like the worlds of Stephen King's Dark Tower or what Sanderson is doing with his Cosmere or...you know...Sliders or something? And, hey...there's some weird spots where they really do connect...that's cool!
Thus began the idea of making standalone books that are still standalone books but books that will also allow interested readers to pick up on the wider mystery of what is going on and the connections between them. I did this because the books themselves are different genres, have different characters and styles and POVS, and I didn't want to force people that for example like the Sky-Island world but don't like the Gush world (or vice versa) to HAVE to read them all, but if you wanted to you could get something extra out of it.
THE PRISONERS CYCLE is also an idea, not a UNIVERSAL TRUTH of my future like the FOUL MOUTH books are, where I have everything mapped out and plotted and obsessively planned. They are instead books were I am trying something new, attempting to be creative, and especially to expand as an author just beyond doing what I'm already good at (first-person, character focused, urban fantasy with a lot of dick jokes). It's all pay-to-play and experimental and I'm sure I'll succeed with some and fail with others and it could all implode before the end if not enough people are interested in them, but...I'm going to give it a shot and step out of my comfort zone, hopefully enough of you will step out of it with me.
Not everything beside the FOUL MOUTH books will be in THE PRISONERS CYCLE and even those book that are in THE PRISONERS CYCLE will be listed in their own specific world, not in the overworld itself when it comes to my list of published novels at the start of my books. So you'd have to be a superfan and come to this blog and check this page to even see or know it exists.
Click the page link above for more info. Excuse me as I get back to writing!