So, about three years ago, I tried something new. Entitled The Unity Wars, it was my first published bit of science fiction (though I’d been writing SF in my free time since high school).

While it was generally well-received by those who read it, it didn’t sell well enough to keep going. That was largely my fault. I used a pen name, kept it separate from my primary author brand, and made a few other marketing mistakes. I had regular readers telling me that they didn’t even know it existed.

So, last year, I decided to try relaunching it, with new covers, under my primary brand. I was working on this when an opportunity popped up. Aethon Books put out a call for a military SF series for this year’s release schedule. I answered, they liked it, and now The Fall of Valdek is about to come out again, this month.

The series got its start in June 2015, as “Alternate Star Wars Prequels.”  (This was about six months before The Force Awakens was released, so the dumpster fire that is the Disney/Lucasfilm sequel trilogy had yet to begin.)  I had been dissatisfied with the prequels (and the direction they led Star Wars as a whole in) for quite a long time, as much as I hadn’t wanted to be, and had a weird little writing prompt pop into my head one day.  “How would I do it differently, more in keeping with what was hinted at in both the original movies and novelizations, as well as some of the West End Games material and the Timothy Zahn Heir to the Empire trilogy?”

I scribbled some notes, but later abandoned it, because I had no desire to get sued into oblivion by the juggernaut that is The Mouse.  I always kind of wanted to finish it, but I had other projects.

It was Galaxy’s Edge that showed the way, with Nick Cole’s “StarWarsNotStarWars” brand, and I’ve since made The Unity Wars it’s own thing, even though it still follows many of the elements I wanted to explore with the alternate Clone Wars.  Clone tech is supposed to be as scary and dangerous as Zahn posited in the Thrawn trilogy, and the clones are supposed to be borderline psychotic enemies of the good guys (though I scrapped the Republic altogether, for various reasons). Not only that, but I wanted to explore some of the ethical problems with mass-producing expendable human beings for labor or combat.

So, now the series is coming back, and hopefully I can at least finish out the initial arc. There are a lot of stories to be told in this universe, as I’ve only begun sketching out a galaxy full of aliens, mysteries, and wars. I’ve got a number of background files of history and alien anthropology that I might post here, if you, the reader, are truly interested.

I hope you’ll come along for the ride.

The Fall of Valdek releases on June 22.

The Unity Wars Returns

Peter Nealen

Peter Nealen is a former Reconnaissance Marine and veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan. He deployed to Iraq in 2005-2006, and again in 2007, with 1st Platoon, Bravo Company, 1st Recon Bn. After two years of schools and workups, including Scout/Sniper Basic and Team Leader's Courses, he deployed to Afghanistan with 4th Platoon, Force Reconnaissance Company, I MEF. Since he got out, he's been writing, authoring many articles and 24 books, mostly Action/Adventure and Military Thrillers, with some excursions into Paranormal Fantasy and Science Fiction.

One thought on “The Unity Wars Returns

  • June 6, 2021 at 11:30 am

    Liked it! Very well done!


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