400 Pre-orders of Last Fight of the Valkyries

valkyries-500I’m excited to announce a major milestone for me as a writer. My fourth book, Last Fight of the Valkyries, now has 400 pre-orders! This is amazing to me. Thank you to everyone who bought an advanced copy. If you all sat together you’d fill a good sized school auditorium. That is something I think about each time I sit down to write. Real people out there are taking the time to order and then read about my zombie universe. It doesn’t get any better for a writer!


As always, it inspires me to work harder to cut new ground in the genre.

New Revolutions Per Mile Series


I’ve been fascinated by Mad Max since I was a kid in the early 80’s. I picked things up with Road Warrior and Thunderdome, then went back later to watch the original. More recently, Fury Road was my favorite movie of 2015.  As a writer it would be tempting to write something very similar to those movies, since I really enjoy that world.

Buy Post Apocalyptic Ponies on Kindle

However, because an author always needs to cut new ground, I’ve created a new series based on a time period closer to our own. By that I mean the world is post-apocalyptic, but it hasn’t yet devolved into a Mad Max-style of kill-or-be-killed driving. Regular people are still driving regular cars, but they are doing it at high speeds and most of the action takes place in high plains Kansas. If you’ve ever been there it would remind you of Max’s Australian outback–but instead of sand it would be endless grasslands and farms. Towns are few and far between. If the world blew up, and if cars were still on the road, they could be used to transport goods and people between those wide open towns. I call the courier system the Prairie Express.

Here’s the setup:

The wheels came off the world two years ago. It was a global war to be sure, but without television or internet people quickly forgot the specifics. Survival itself became the 24-hour news cycle.

With her father’s high performance sports car, Perth Hopkins managed to outrun the plagues, famines, riots, and most other refugees. She’d made it to safety, far from the ruined cities.

Today, years later, she drives as a high-speed courier between the small farming towns in the breadbasket of a new nation. She’s learning the rules of the road in the safe interior—the pony pastures—but she craves the speed and danger of the interstate. Those routes are run by the older girls…

When one of those girls shows up at just the right time, Perth’s opportunity to move up arrives. But can she handle it? Is she willing to trade safety for speed? And really, how much worse can it be out there?

This is a KINDLE SHORT READ (90-120 minutes) and begins the Revolutions Per Mile series.

And here’s the introduction to Perth.

The long ribbon of pavement brought me to this place when I was fifteen. It chewed on my leg like a feral dog for two years until I was old enough and talented enough to get behind the wheel and tame it. Once I tasted the road, I bled gasoline.

I now live in high plains Kansas. It’s an island of safety between the glowing nuclear pyres. Girls my age must work to survive, same as everyone else. My unfortunate sisters have to toil in the fields or wrench in garages. They go slow.

I’m one of the lucky few: I spend my life going fast as a courier. I feel the wind through my hair. I get to see what’s over the horizon. I do everything in the top gear. Without us drivers, this place would be nothing more than tumbleweeds and hawks.

I never look back, except for my dad. He perished with the rest of the world. Truth be told, I wanted to die with him. But some days, when I drive very fast, he returns to me. Tells me I’m pushing too hard.

He always forgets. Out here, there’s no slowing down.

These aren’t full-length books (my Sirens books are about 300 pages a piece. These are more like 70) but they are full-length stories. I have plans to write full-length books in this world. I already have 3 short stories plus two larger books sketched out on my idea pad. As a writer I have to keep testing the market to see what readers enjoy. Their interest and mine crossed with the Since the Sirens books. Perhaps the same will happen with these.

I hope you enjoy them.

E.E. Isherwood

April 20, 2016



Zombie Book 4 87k Words

One thing I love about writing is that no matter how much you plan, you never really know where the book is going to take you. I listen to the story and let it tell itself. I do use an outline to keep a trajectory in mind so I don’t just write forever, but once I’m into the weeds of typing it out, I’m often taken into new areas I never imagined when I created the outline. I’m almost done with the epilogue of this book, and it’s taken me in some new directions. The ending of the main portion of the book was unlike anything I could have thought up prior to writing it. The ending only became obvious when I was deep in the story, and even then I resisted up until the very end to write what I needed to write.

Sometimes, you just have to let your characters tell the story they want to tell. Right?

I’m sitting at 87,000 words. This book is a little longer than I thought it would be, but I feel really good about the material I’ve written. I don’t see any reason why it will go over 90,000 after edits and whatnots.

Then, I can start on the next book!


50 Reviews of Since the Sirens

Wow, I’m so happy to have enough readers go through my first book that 50 people have now left reviews. I view this as an achievement almost on par with publishing the thing. Real people have entered my imagination and spent the time there as they read through my story. That is probably the coolest thing about writing.


Reviews are a funny thing. Some authors studiously avoid looking at the reviews people leave for their books, because they don’t want to stress out about it. However, as a self-published author I’ve found it very helpful to at least check in once in a while to ensure reviewers aren’t reporting major problems with my book, such as it is missing a chapter or had so many grammatical errors they couldn’t finish it. Fortunately, I’ve avoided those big pitfalls.

Most reviews have been very favorable (4.6 average over 50 reviews). So many people gave it five stars, and there is lots of really great feedback about the book. It’s truly humbling to read. The book is about zombies, but I tried to add in some deeper meaning in how my characters handled the changes thrust upon them at the end of the world. Apparently a lot of people enjoyed that. The poorest reviews come from people who didn’t favor the religious predilections of Grandma Marty, which I respect. I’ve been told it should have a warning to let people know religion would have a role in the book, but I think the reviews do a pretty good job of that…so I’ll let them carry that load. I wrote the book by letting Marty say what she wanted to say, and what came out is what you see. You don’t try to tone down a 104-year-old lady. :)

Thank you to all who left reviews, even the negative ones. Taken together I hope they give future readers a good perspective on what they can expect when they open up book 1 and enter the zombie apocalypse with my characters.




Computer Crash

Not even a computer crash can keep this book down! I’m paranoid about saving my work, but even with all the precautions I take, I still feel it will ALL get deleted by some massive accident. I’m happy to say that didn’t happen the other night, but we did have a wind-driven power failure in town which drained my UPS overnight and then caused my PC to shut off. When I pushed the button to turn it back on in the morning…it remained silent. What a horrible feeling.

However, I save my work on my main hard drive, a USB thumb drive, an external hard drive, and then for good measure I put it into a Google Drive folder. The only thing I’m missing is to go “Book of Eli” and memorize the whole thing!

I’m still at 67,000 words, but not because I haven’t been doing any work. I had to go in and totally rework an early chapter to match the action later in the book, so I scrubbed out about 3000 words, then added in about 3000 new words. This is my normal process in writing, as I tend to check my work as I go to reduce the editing needed at the end. Seems to be working out OK.

So what was the cause of my computer woes? As best I can tell it was a bad power supply. I bought a new one and slapped it in there and all seems right again. My computer is ancient (over 5 years at least) and I keep it on 100% of the time–so it was probably time for a new power supply. As long as I can keep hitting the keys in Libre Office, I can keep writing books. The old girl keeps on keepin’ on.


Book 4 67k Progress

I’ve kind of lost track of the days. It says I did 7000 words since yesterday, but the time has flown by and I can’t really be sure. Plus, my story is in a deep dark place where time seems to fade away. I guess I’m REALLY getting into the story.

I was thinking this book was going to be a little shorter than my last three, but I’m already at 67k words? This thing is going to be much closer in size to the others (those are around 90k words) than I thought. The story just tells itself, so putting boundaries on it is tough. I have to aim for a good cutoff so I can start working on the fifth book. That is the big challenge for me when writing this series.

Not a bad problem to have!


Book 4 60k Progress

Being a writer is new for me. It’s so easy to get distracted and some days almost no writing gets done at all. All the other minutia can stack up faster than you’d believe. Posting on message boards. Maintaining social media channels. Updating this website. Selling and promoting books already out in the market. So I got to wondering how much I could write if I dedicated a full day to NOTHING but banging on the keyboard.

The result? I cranked out 11,500 words in about 8 hours! That was a great day. Just me, my characters, and my world–with no email, no social media, no phone calls.

The next days I did about 2000 words a day, as part of a more “normal” routine, but now I’m wondering if I’m spending my time wisely. I could take a cue from the movie Spaceballs, and instead of spending my time preparing to write, I should just write!

Getting there!

Siren Songs New Cover

Last week I redesigned my book 2 cover with artwork and assistance from Covers by Christian. I’m extremely pleased with his work and now my first three books have brand spanking new covers!

The cover graphics celebrate one element of my story, with the MRAP vehicle similar to the one shown here. I wish I could have found the exact model I have in the book, but we live in an imperfect world. :)

Here is Siren Songs: Sirens of the Zombie Apocalypse, Book 2 in all its glory.


Book 4 47k Progress

Moved about 3000 words over the last few days. 2000 this afternoon. I’m really excited that the story is revealing new pieces of the mystery of the zombie plague in ways I never imagined when I sketched the book’s outline. So many nooks and crannies to explore.

When the zombies come, will there be any authority/government left at all in cities well outside the normal channels of government? St. Louis is well outside the pull of Washington D.C., for instance. Would the Feds–if they were still around–have any influence in St. Louis once half the population was eating the other? What would be the point?

Right away other entities would fill in the void. People have to eat. Drink. Stick together for protection. Those needs don’t just disappear, though I feel it would be impossible on any scale beyond a neighborhood or very small community. There would be too many people sick and zombie-fied to contain them if authorities tried to control too large an area. But there would be pockets of control. This portion of the book I’m exploring one such pocket.

Thanks for reading.