“The train went west, a phantom, perhaps, but he followed after it, nevertheless”
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It came from the east and went into the west with a rustle of the prairie grass and a cry of the rails that lasted on the wind long after it was gone. Jonas Arthur stood on the platform and watched it go, watched the smoke rising from its single stack against the deepening horizon. He’d been waiting for the Drenditch Express, intent on robbing it, but it hadn’t come. Instead another train passed the station and disappeared into the desert, and Jonas knew what it was that was riding the rails west: a demon-train.
Hell-bent on catching the mysterious coach, Jonas begins the pursuit. The train runs west, its whistle drawing him beyond the edge of the Frontier, beyond the edge of the world as he knows it. Against all reason and common sense the hunt will take him into a world stranger than anything he has ever imagined. If the inhabitants of the wasteland don’t finish him off the weather might. But Jonas cannot be sated. With no idea why he does it, he pressed on in the path of the train, following its pull as it leads him out beyond the wasteland.
Behind the Book
I began writing Beyond the Wasteland in the summer of 2011. Much of the book was writing on my 11 inch laptop in the front seat of my ’91 Mx6 sitting in the parking lot of the dealership I was working at. Lunch breaks and after hours, I’d crack my HP and describe what I was seeing. All I had was a picture in mind: this gunslinger following the railroad tracks west, following something I couldn’t really describe. I knew it was something magical, something extraordinary, and it was the wonder and mystery of it that kept me interested in what would happen. Back then I didn’t even know what was beyond the wasteland, I just knew I wanted to find out.
So Jonas kept going, and I kept going. These characters came to life. In some ways, Jonas and the Kid are very much the person I wished I was when I was a child, so I had no trouble writing their backstories and letting them be who they are. But at some point I realized I couldn’t put it off any longer.
I had to know what was Beyond the Wasteland.