In the spring of 2014, when I first visited New Orleans, I looked up at the statue of Andrew Jackson in front of the St. Louis Cathedral and thought, wouldn’t it be cool if Jackson was riding a hadrosaur instead of a horse. As that thought occurred to me, I could almost hear the bellowing of hadrosaurs echoing the walls of Pirate’s Alley behind the cathedral and I knew I wanted to write a story about the Battle of New Orleans with dinosaurs.
That fall, I went to MileHiCon in Denver and Dana Bell told me that she was considering an anthology about extinct and mythical creatures living outside their time. She wanted to ask what if those ancient creatures of so beloved in fiction, myth and science had not disappeared or been real? What type of uses might have been developed to handle them and how might man have felt about the thundering giants in yesterday’s, today’s, or tomorrow’s worlds? I pitched my idea and she invited me to send the story. I wrote it up, sent it in, and she ultimately accepted it. And now, I’m pleased to announce that Extinct? is available for sale and “Jackson’s Hadrosaurs” is the lead story in the volume.
What else will you find in the book? Imagine a sanctuary for dinosaurs that displaces humans. Raptors used on a distant planet as scouts for a new colony. Dodo birds leaving a record about what happened to them or an unusual way dragons help settlers. A conqueror who learns a hard lesson from a goddess and two children who create their own monster.
You’ll find lovely tales about those lumbering giants of old in ways not shown before, of those who ruled the skies and many others once thought to be mythical, and yet, here they appear in Extinct?
I’m thrilled once again to be listed in a table of contents alongside so many of my favorite authors. Here are the stories you’ll find in this anthology:
- Jackson’s Hadrosaurs – David Lee Summers
- The Horse Man – Rebecca McFarland Kyle
- The Wizard and the Dinosaur Riding Pirate – Sam Knight
- Flutterlight – Ronnie Seagren
- One More Bad Decision – M.R. Anglin
- Ryuu Poo – Tam Lin
- Unmaking Lord Rex Tyran – A.M. Burns
- Dunce de León – Quincy J. Allen and Aaron Michael Richey
- Fury – Spencer Carvalho
- Dinosaura & Hominana – Todd A. Walls
- The Goons – Matt Bille
- The Mask Maker of Venezia – C. John Arthur
- Song of the Sireini – Sean Jones
- Across the Blood-Stained Sea – Rob S. Rice
- The Prophecy Foretold – Lorelei Suzanne
- Dodo’s Atlantis – Tam Lin
- Man Versus Rex – Denise Miller Holmes
- Lift – R. Joseph Maas
- Children of the Goddess – Carol Hightshoe
- Best Decision – Dana Bell
- Brown and the Allosaurus Wrecks – J.A. Campbell
One of the things I wanted to explore in my story was the notion of herbivorous dinosaurs somehow being “tame” or “safe.” I think anyone who has spent time on a farm or around animals knows that herbivores can be dangerous if not treated with respect. On another trip to New Orleans, I stopped at a rest area and saw a crane standing in a bog while an alligator swam around hunting. The bird and the reptile were completely at ease with each other. Both seemed much more interested in eating the fish that swam around them than fighting. It made me think of symbiotic relationships in nature and I began to wonder how alligators would react to dinosaurs. Would they be friends or enemies? You can see my approach in the story.
When I was in New Orleans this past summer, I drove out to the Chalmette Battlefield, site of the real Battle of New Orleans. I was gratified to see it that it was much as I pictured it from descriptions. What’s more, I found descendants of dinosaurs wandering the field.
Extinct? is available in print at: Amazon.com
And as an ebook at: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0778XYJ67/