The Next and the Next.

I’m behind with blogging this week. My wife broke a leg and so I am cook, housekeeper and home help until she mends. I haven’t had time to write a new blog entry, but I found this that I don’t think I posted before. I’ve updated it a bit to say something about the next Iskander series novels in the pipeline.

Arrival went back to the beginning of the adventure, when Gisel was 16 and the Iskander had just arrived in orbit around Gaia, the 17th century alternate Earth. That novel has shifted the series sideways a little into the YA category and I’m trying out a few plots to follow if young people show interest.

The novel of her adventures at 18, when she became commissioned into Iskander’s Security Service, has been on the back burner for a long time. It features the Iskanders’ second campaign season in Tarnland with Lord Ricart commanding the right wing of the allied army, in which the Iskander Legion is the heaviest hitter. As a new lieutenant Gisel gets to help train Iskander’s first light infantry unit over the winter, but the chauvinists in the Autarch’s entourage veto her leading it into action. They don’t reckon with Gisel’s determination, or the accidents of warfare, but I’ll leave you to wait for the novel to find out how she fares. I will say that this novel features her ill advised love affair with . . . ah, now who could it be with?

I have two possibilities to take up her life at the age of 17, the summer following Arrival. Gisel is supposed to be at full-time study – she has to learn a ‘trade’ to fit into the Iskander hierarchy. However Gisel’s training is rather like the engineering sandwich courses I followed – a period of intense study followed by practical experience. The stories take place after she has undergone the first few months of her father’s engineering introduction, as well as the medical training Hather offered, which has qualified Gisel as an EMT – emergency medical tech specializing in battlefield wounds. She’s likely to get a lot of use out of that in her later career.

It’s now M’Tov’s chance to put her through security service training – his own program that covers keeping Iskander people and installations safe from nasties, as well as training her to operate safely in hostile territory either gathering intelligence or sabotaging something. I have one idea to have her join a party infiltrated into an Imperial possession to gather information and make contacts with potential allies. The other idea is to put her training aboard a vessel sent to rescue a nobleman who has disappeared – after proposing a treaty of friendship with Iskander. Do you suppose her nemesis Zagdorf could have something to do with it?

Then in the adult stream there is a sequel to The Wildcat’s Victory; it is at third draft stage. Those who have read TWV will remember the situation at the end – well this takes place over the period 6 – 7 months later. If you haven’t read it I won’t give any hints, but the title is The Wildcat’s Burden. It should be released around September this year. Gisel has a new posting – a city job that keeps her from dashing about all over the countryside – but this is no sinecure – the city is the most dangerous in the world. Since I couldn’t have her sticking her neck out to go and find more enemies, I have them come to her – operating in the city to spy, sabotage, murder, or make their fortunes. It features all her old enemies and most of her friends – plus a number of new ones.


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2 Responses to “The Next and the Next.”

  1. joylene Says:

    I’m really looking forward to it, Chris. It is very similar to the political thriller I’ve been working on for over 10 years. I’m hoping I can learn a thing or two and be inspired to do the final polish on my ms.

    • kester2 Says:

      Hi Joylene:

      I’d hope it would motivate, but I’m not sure how relevant my plot would be. My scenario is somewhat different to the contemporary political thriller.


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