S. King is the author of both the “Sword’s Edge” science fiction / fantasy series and the “Deuces Wild” space opera series. She’s also a martial artist and mother to four homeschooled children.

Tamara Wilhite: What makes the Sword’s Edge series science fiction instead of fantasy?

S. King:  There is no magic in the Sword’s Edge Chronicles. Instead, it’s long-forgotten technology, some of it alien in origin.

Tamara Wilhite: What led you to write the prequel to your Sword’s Edge Chronicles, “Unlikely Prophet”?

S. King:  The broad history of the Teldheri people came to me as I first started to write in that universe. I began making notes on their history and before long the story of how they were saved from their dying planet began to evolve as a novel.

Tamara Wilhite: On your website, you give a shout out to Dr. Johnathan Crofts as “your very own physicist”. How has he helped you keep the physics in your science fiction series realistic?

S. King:  I have known Jon for decades. We were on something called The Lyst (an email list about the Myst and Riven games), and I put out a call for someone to help me make sure my science wasn’t completely off track. The poor chap replied and has been stuck since. Every bit I write that has to do with science I send to him so he can tear his hair out trying to correct me or try to make it work. His favorite question when I contact him is, “What laws of physics are you trying to break now?”

Tamara Wilhite: What is the “Deuce’s Wild” series about?

S. King:  It’s a space opera series that started as a monthly serial novel done as a proof-of-concept in the now defunct Ray Gun Revival online magazine. It’s basically a space opera/western mash-up about a cowboy and a space gunslinger-type who have to join forces because they are being hunted by the same bad guys. In the course of the first novel, they end up forging an unlikely and often humorous friendship.

Tamara Wilhite: Your bio says you’ve been a fan of shows like the Twilight Zone, Outer Limits and Dark Shadows. Which science fiction works had the greatest influence on you personally?

S. King:  Boy, that’s tough! For television, Twilight Zone and Star Trek I think were the ones that influenced me most while growing up. As far as books go, it was Tolkien and Heinlein, definitely.

Tamara Wilhite: And which ones influenced your own writing?

S. King:  Another tough answer. Besides the above which definitely have affected not only me personally but my writing, everything from Babylon 5 to Asimov to McCaffrey to Bujold and more I cannot even think of at the moment I do know have impacted my writing.

Tamara Wilhite: What are you currently working on?

S. King:  I am almost finished with the third Deuces Wild book. It has taken a sharp turn and surprised the snot out of me. I am wondering what my readers will think of it. I hope they don’t throw things at me!

Tamara Wilhite: Is there anything you’d like to add?

S. King:  We’re going through strange times, some even say it’s rather like Heinlein’s The Crazy Years. Keep your chin up, look up, and find creative ways to use your energy!

Tamara Wilhite: Thank you for speaking with me.

S. King:  You’re welcome, and thank you!