So, going back a couple of years now, I discovered the military science fiction genre.
I think it happened somewhere around the time that I started playing Warhammer 40k at my local gaming shop. I’m a halfway decent model painter, but I really, truly, honestly suck at playing the game. I lose games probably about 4 or 5:1, and it’s kind of depressing. I really enjoy the modeling aspect of it, though… building and painting is quite cathartic.
Regardless of that fact, though, the ‘fluff’ (that’s the official term for all of the story that Games Workshop has built around their hobby) really captivated me. I was really drawn in to the dark, unyielding universe, and so I started buying WH40K omnibuses, practically in bulk. I devoured them all, discovering which of the authors I liked and which were not as good.
My temporary insanity led me, in the end, to Baen and Webscription. For those of you who don’t know, these are the folks who are basically the only ones in the professional arena who are doing ebooks right. They have a massive library of free books by authors, usually the first one or two in a long series, and offer the others at reasonable prices with NO DRM.
I proceeded through the Baen Free Library in much the same way I had done with the Warhammer novels; figuring out which authors appealed to me and which I was going to end up passing on. I discovered probably ten or twelve great series by six or seven different authors, and read them all.
The military sci-fi really struck a chord with me, and that’s why I wrote this short story. Entitled Dutiful Daughter, it’s the story of a young woman in command of a cruiser squadron during routine war games, when something goes entirely wrong.
As a character, Trace really grew on me throughout the writing of this story, and I would one day like to figure out where her story goes so that I could write a full-length novel worthy of her. That’s the goal, but the time is not yet.
Anyway, this particular ebook is free, free, FREE! So what have you got to lose, am I right?