After five years as a prisoner of war, Commander Charlie Cass-bastard son of the Duke de Maris-is finally home. But his arrival is cause for consternation as much as celebration, because when he was thought dead, he was considered a hero to the Empire.
Alive, he’s a political liability. Because the war with the Syndonese is not yet over, and while the King technically answers to the Nine-the Dukes of the various planets and moons of the Empire-there are others actually pulling his strings. And they certainly don’t need Charlie Cass messing up their delicate plans. Unfortunately for them, that’s what he’s best at. And when the next war always seems to begin as soon as the ink is dry on the peace treaty, only a true hero can set things right.
Jim has eight published SF&F books, with two more due out in 2015. He’s been unusually successful as a self-published writer; Child of the Sword went word-of-mouth viral about two years ago, and among all his books he has since sold close to 50,000 copies. With that success, he was able to quit his day-job as a running-dog-lackey for the Bourgeois capitalist establishment, and work for himself as a fulltime writer. He says his new boss is a real jerk–so demanding.
Jim writes in three sub-genres: epic-fantasy, hard science fiction, and contemporary urban fantasy–no vampires–frequently with strong young-adult themes. The infamous “they” say that one should not write in multiple genres, but “they” also say, “write what you read,” and Jim reads copious quantities of all three.
Jim is also a scientist with a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering; his specialty is laser physics. He has a big pet peeve regarding lasers as weapons in science fiction. He spent decades working in the laser and electro-optics industry, even did some research on laser weapons in the 80’s. And when writers use a laser as a weapon in a story, they invariably get it wrong, usually by violating some basic law of physics. Jim gives a workshop on laser weapons, and what writers do wrong–no names please.
Jim was born in Seattle, but he’s lived most of his life in California, though he did live on the east coast and in Europe for a while. He now resides in Arizona with his wife Karen and their three cats: Tilda, Julia and Natasha. From a very early age he made up stories in his head, but he never considered writing. In his family you went to college, got a degree in something useful and got a real job, so he did the Ph.D. thing. But he was still making up those stories in his head, so he sat down and wrote a science fiction novel, and as he says, “It was 250,000 words of pure crap.” It was the hardest decision he ever made, but he literally threw it away and turned to other writing projects.
Science has always been a passion of Jim’s, but writing is an addiction. He just recently published The Name of the Sword, the 4th and final book in the series that started with Child of the Sword. Right now he’s working on Treason’s Child, the prequel to A Choice of Treasons, which should be out in Q3 2015.
Never Dead Enough, the 3rd took in The Dead Among Us, will follow near the end of 2015.
Jim intends to keep on writing and publishing more stories, but no laser weapons.
Visit him at http://www.jldoty.com