Today we have a guest post by eSpec authors and Weird Wild West contributors Gail Z. Martin and her husband, Larry N. Martin. In addition to WWW, the Martins have also contributed to the upcoming eSpec anthology The Side of Good / The Side of Evil. This guest blog is a part of their Days of the Dead blog tour, so be sure to follow the links provided for all the goodies they have pulled together!
The Evolution of Ruin Creek
By Gail Z. Martin and Larry N. Martin
Danielle asked us to do a story for the Weird Wild West anthology she was planning to do and of course we said ‘yes’. Which in the case of anthologies, is generally followed up by the thought, What the hell did we just get ourselves into this time?
Now Danielle didn’t know that Gail had her own personal Weird West connection. Gail’s father was a doctor on the Standing Rock reservation after World War II. It was a lifelong dream of his to spend time with the Sioux. He had read books about Native Americans his entire life, and when he got to the reservation, he learned to speak the Sioux language. He also met the last survivors of the Battle of Little Big Horn—men who were by then around ninety years old who had fought both for Custer and on the Sioux side. Eventually, Gail’s mom and dad were actually adopted in the Sioux tribe. Gail’s dad also collected a lot of artifacts—beaded clothing, spears, war axes, drums and other beautiful items. At the time Danielle contacted us about the anthology, we were just finishing up handling Gail’s late father’s estate—and we’d had more than one spooky occurrence with some ‘weird West’ artifacts of our own.
We had also just signed a contract with Solaris Books to write a new Steampunk novel, Iron & Blood, set in an alternative history Pittsburgh in 1898. Two of the characters in Iron & Blood are government agents for the Department of Supernatural Investigation. We had already written some spin-off stories about their adventures for other anthologies, and decided they would be perfect for a story for The Weird Wild West.
This is where research comes into play. We did some digging to see what was going on out West in the late 1890s. Funny thing, but there was a spate of ‘mysterious airship’ sightings in the Southwest around 1896-1898. People swore they saw strange, shining airships. The sightings were never satisfactorily explained. There’s also a big meteor crater out in the Arizona desert, a huge pock mark in the ground from a long-ago impact. Then there was the real-life town of Canyon Diablo, a place that went through seven sheriffs in a year, a town too lawless even for Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday. Plenty of towns back then sprang from nothing when the railroad was being built or a gold or silver claim was filed, boomed for a few years, and became ghost towns when the railroad was built (or the mine ran out). Put it all together, stir…and the result is Ruin Creek.
Our Days of the Dead blog tour runs through October 31 with never-before-seen cover art, brand new excerpts from upcoming books and recent short stories, interviews, guest blog posts, giveaways and more! Plus, we’ll be including extra excerpt links for my stories and for books by author friends of our. You’ve got to visit the participating sites to get the goodies, just like Trick or Treat! Details here: www.AscendantKingdoms.com
Book swag is the new Trick-or-Treat! Grab your envelope of book swag awesomeness from us & 10 other authors http://on.fb.me/1h4rIIe before 11/1!
Trick or Treat! Excerpt from Gal’s new urban fantasy novel Vendetta set in my Deadly Curiosities world here http://bit.ly/1ZXCPVS Launches Dec. 29
Trick Or Treat excerpt from our friend Stuart Jaffe from his Southern Bound Max Porter Paranormal Mystery series http://www.stuartjaffe.com/mp-sample/
More treats! Double-Dragon Publishing sampler #3 http://www.double-dragon-ebooks.com/sample/DDPSAMPLE003.mobi
About the Authors
Gail Z. Martin is the author of the upcoming novel Vendetta: A Deadly Curiosities Novel in her urban fantasy series set in Charleston, SC (Dec. 2015, Solaris Books) as well as the epic fantasy novel Shadow and Flame (March, 2016 Orbit Books) which is the fourth and final book in the Ascendant Kingdoms Saga. Shadowed Path, an anthology of Jonmarc Vahanian short stories set in the world of The Summoner, debuts from Solaris books in June, 2016.
Other books include The Jake Desmet Adventures a new Steampunk series (Solaris Books) co-authored with Larry N. Martin as well as Ice Forged, Reign of Ash and War of Shadows in The Ascendant Kingdoms Saga, The Chronicles of The Necromancer series (The Summoner, The Blood King, Dark Haven, Dark Lady’s Chosen) from Solaris Books and The Fallen Kings Cycle (The Sworn, The Dread) from Orbit Books and the urban fantasy novel Deadly Curiosities from Solaris Books.
Larry N. Martin is the co-author of the new Steampunk series Iron and Blood: The Jake Desmet Adventures and a series of short stories: The Storm & Fury Adventures set in the Jake Desmet universe. These short stories also appear in the anthologies Clockwork Universe: Steampunk vs. Aliens, The Weird Wild West, The Side of Good/The Side of Evil and Alien Artifacts with more to come. Larry and Gail also have science fiction short stories in the Space and Contact Light anthologies and a new novella, Grave Voices.
Gail writes four series of ebook short stories: The Jonmarc Vahanian Adventures, The Deadly Curiosities Adventures, The King’s Convicts series, and together with Larry N. Martin, The Storm and Fury Adventures. Her work has appeared in over 20 US/UK anthologies. Newest anthologies include: The Big Bad 2, Athena’s Daughters, Realms of Imagination, Heroes, With Great Power, and (co-authored with Larry N. Martin) Space, Contact Light, The Weird Wild West, The Side of Good/The Side of Evil, Alien Artifacts, Clockwork Universe: Steampunk vs. Aliens.