Our next Kindle Worlds preview is Rock House, a novelette co-authored with Terry W. Ervin II. Terry is best known for his work in science fiction and fantasy, including The Crax War Chronicles and Thunder Wells.
Trouble seems to find Dane Maddock and Bones Bonebrake everywhere they go. A brief visit to a state park turns into a dangerous hunt for a forgotten treasure. Can Maddock and Bones find the treasure of Rock House?
Interview with Terry W. Ervin II, co-author of Rock House
Tell us a bit about Rock House. What was the inspiration?
Waiting for members of the Myrmidon Squad to catch up with them during a layover, Bones and Maddock make an excursion to Hocking Hills, seeking a hidden Native American treasure that no one else is looking for. Or so they thought.
I take my daughters hiking in the Hocking Hills State Park each summer. It’s very scenic with a variety of trails, waterfalls, and natural rock formations. (Pics posted below.) I thought if Maddock and Bones ever visited Ohio, it’d be one of the places they might find of interest. Beyond that, Rock House is one of the caves visitors of the park can explore—and, of course, it’s the source for the title.
You’re primarily known as a speculative fiction author. How was the process of writing Rock House different from most of your other books?
The subject matter is a little different, requiring different types of research (geologic formations and local Native American tribes vs. medieval weapons or metallic hydrogen) but, in the end, it’s still storytelling. Maddock and Bones adventures always have action and a bit of a mystery. That’s similar to most of my fantasy/science fiction novels and short stories.
Describe the experience of writing in someone else’s universe instead of your own.
It goes back to research. I’d read a number of the Dane Maddock books, and listened to a few on audio (Jeffrey Kafer does an excellent job bringing the stories and characters to life), so when the opportunity to write in the Dane Maddock Universe presented itself, I went back to re-read and re-listen to the books. This time, instead of listening and reading for enjoyment, I focused on the story structure, pacing, content and characters—their traits including dialogue, mannerisms, and just who they are.
Readers of the Dane Maddock books have expectations, and I wanted to meet those expectations by being consistent with both the characters and the type of story told. In this effort, David Wood’s suggestions and input proved invaluable.
If a Maddock reader hasn’t tried your novels, which one would you suggest they start with and why?
I would have to say Thunder Wells. It has action, adventure, and a bit of a mystery. It’s about an average guy trying to survive an apocalyptic alien invasion and, in the end, doing what he can to make a difference. Except for not having a sought-after treasure, I think it’s one Dane Maddock might enjoy.