What’s Next for B.K. Bass?

As always, there’s a lot of exciting things going on in the B.K. Laboratory. I wanted to share a little of what is planned for the rest of the year and beyond, and some news about a change in direction for me as an author.

Before we get into what’s coming next, I think it would be best to take a quick look at what has come before. Last year I was plugging away at what should be a fairly long science fiction novel. I decided one weekend to take a break to avoid burnout, and wrote a dark fantasy novella.

Then I wrote another, and another, and an anthology, and a cyberpunk novella, and a heroic fantasy novella…. In the meantime, I had also started up a company and began a career as a publisher, not to mention launching my own literary magazine with the help of my business partners.

So, that weekend off turned into a year of crazy levels of productivity, but alas my novel was still simmering on the back-burner. I think this was the best thing for it, since I’ve learned lot about writing and editing over the course of the last year.

Which bring us to now. After receiving reviews of my various novellas, there’s been one common trend:

My biggest critique? I wanted more. 

I’m on the edge of my seat waiting for part 2.

I wish the next book was out already.

I look forward to Book 2 of the trilogy!

My only complaint is born merely of anticipation. I want more!

As much as I love being able to tell all these different stories, it is important to me that my readers be happy too! In the interest of that, I’ve rearranged my commitment to the publishing company to free up more writing time, and will be shifting my focus away from novellas and to full-length novels.

This first brings us back to the science fiction novel on the back burner: What Once Was Home. I’ll be committing most of April to finishing this manuscript and hope to have the revised draft to my editor by mid-May.

Find out more about What Once was Home here!

The other big change coming from this is that the project I was currently focused on – Parting the Veil – is going to be delayed. It was coming out this summer, but it will now have a release in the fall. This is not only because of the time being spent on What Once Was Home, but also because I’ll be making Parting the Veil a novel instead of a novella! The outline for the story already has a lot going on, and as a novella it was going to have to be a very streamlined plot that didn’t delve too deeply into certain things. The potential for a novel-length story is definitely there, so I’m going to make that happen.

Find out more about Parting the Veil here!

Now, there were quotes up there from readers anticipating the next book in a series or trilogy. Not to worry! Between these other projects, and contiguous with them, I’ll still be working on my novellas. The focus will be on delivering highly anticipated sequels, and I will not be starting any new series until these are out there. Among these projects are Companions of the Stone Road, the sequel to Warriors of Understone; and Night Life, the sequel to Night Shift.

All of these projects and more should be completed before the end of this year, and I’m looking forward to many more exciting things in 2020!

The Ravencrest Chronicles: Wave Two

The next wave of Ravencrest books are coming up in the second half of 2019. Unlike the episodic nature of the first wave – which focused on introducing key characters and the setting – the second wave will be a serialized epic told over the course of four novellas.

A mysterious cult has infiltrated every part of Seahaven, from the most respected nobility all the way down to the dockworker’s guild. Gareth leads the charge in unraveling this dark conspiracy, joined by friends old and new.

Keep an eye out for more information about Midnight Masques, Tapestry of Lies, Cult of the Shadow Queen, and Upon a Black Wing, all coming in 2019!

The Burning Sands: Cressus

Cressus is the southernmost city on the northern peninsula. Situated near the Cressian Oasis, there is a sufficient water supply to sustain the city. Surplus water is still imported from Shem, and then traded to the lands of Kosh in the south.

Cressus lies near the edge of The Great Sand Sea and is plagued by regular sand storms. Outlying villages near the city are also subject to raids from the nomadic orcs of The Burning land to the southeast, although they rarely venture so far north.

The city itself is walked and features mostly simple sandstone architecture. The wealthier district is dominated by large palaces with towers topped with brass minurats that shine in the sun. The wealthy traders of Cressus trade lumber, food and water from the north for precious metals and gems from the Emerald Coast beyond Koth.

The government of Cressus consists of a council of the wealthiest merchants in the city called the Circle of Gold. Each of the twelve merchant princes controls their own private army. There is no organized military if the city itself, and the council must work together to police and defend their interests. Corruption is rampant within the government, and quarrels between the merchant princes often lead to small civil conflicts.

Most of the common people live in a maze of small homes clustered around the outside of the city walls. Most of the poor barely survive, and while work inside the city would afford them a better life many cannot afford the tax simply to pass through the gates.

The Burning Sands: Shem

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Shem is a bustling trade port at the mouth of the Azure river, the only major river on the continent of Erimos. It is supplied with an abundance of fresh water, boasts massive amounts of fertile farmland, and is the heart of all trade in Erimos.

Because of the desirability of the land that it controls, the city-state of Shem must constantly be on alert against potential rivals. The military power of Shem is unrivaled on the continent, mostly thanks to an extensive reliance on slave soldiers to bolster their ranks. Slave labor, also, is the backbone of their economy. Slaves work the marshland farms around the mouth of the river and provide a food surplus that allows the city-state to trade these essential resources for boundless wealth.

All of the other city-states on the peninsula trade with Shem, but invariably there are conflicts related to the valuation of the Shemmite commodities. These conflicts often lead to war, but the military power of Shem has never before been defeated.

The government itself is lead by a Sultan, and this title is passed on via heredity. There is also a council of viziers from among the most wealthy merchant houses. The city-state is ruled with a heavy hand, and every grain and coin is counted by a merciless bureaucracy. Violation of the law, especially theft from the state, can be met with harsh punishments. It is not uncommon to see the corpses of criminals crucified along the roads leading into and out of the city itself.

The city-state also controls land along the river all of the way to its source at the Pasha Oasis, the largest oasis on the peninsula. A sizable town has grown around the oasis, called Maresh. It is large enough to be considered a city, itself. The main purpose of the settlement is to support the garrison that guards the oasis and patrols the eastern reach of the city-state’s holdings.


This is for an upcoming desert-themed sword and sorcery project that I am working on.

Stay tuned for more!

Idol of the Dark Ziggurat

     Here’s a little teaser for Idol of the Dark Ziggurat, a novelette that I am working on for Thrilling Tales of Adventure: a Dieselpunk Anthology.

He was now close enough to see the ziggurat itself. The massive gray stone blocks were piled one atop each other with precision, their weathered edges till fitting tightly together after untold thousands of years. The pyramid-like structure rose in terraces, each successive level growing smaller as it rose. Statues protruded from the surface in regular intervals. They were too far to see clearly in the evening light, but there seemed to be bulbous bodies with grasping tentacles covering the stone structure. There were faded carvings on every inch of the ziggurat, as well. Again, there were odd creatures with tentacles. Some bore resemblance to creatures of the sea, but others were man-like shapes with tentacles for arms or protruding from their faces.

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