At present, three books are planned for the Viridian System Series. Each will feature Big Pete and the Swede as the protagonists, although other recurring characters may take larger roles.
Big Pete and the Swede, more correctly known as Pete Garcia and Lars Nilsson, are asteroid miners in the far reaches of the galaxy. The asteroid belt of the Viridian System is rich in orichalcum, a rare, very useful, and therefore extremely precious metal, which everyone wants. The Imperium, a dominating oligarchy which masquerades as a benevolent democratic institution, wants it badly. And after years of being happy just to trade it and leave others to do the dirty work, it wants to control it, like it does other useful things.
Planets that produce grain abundantly? Take them over. Planets with the raw materials for plasglas? Turn them into manufactories.
The only organisation that seems to have any hope of opposing the Imperium is the Federation, and they aren’t strong enough to be everywhere at once. Besides, they have their own type of nasty dictator…
Book 1: The Perihelix
status: second edition expected 2017
Length: 83,400 words approx
It doesn’t come as much of a surprise to find Pete and Lars hold secrets of their own. Each has been too closely mixed up with Imperium business in the past, and they want nothing to do with it. But their pasts catch up with them, and in the first book The Perihelix, they are drawn into a chase around the Alpha Quadrant to find pieces of the Perihelix, a legendary weapon which will free the enslaved and deliver defeat to the enemies of the righteous. Or something like that.
Book 2: Curved Space to Corsair
Status: writing second draft
Big Pete and the Swede, together with Maggie and Dolores, who is now a free woman, take a holiday in the miners’ new spacecraft while some building work goes on at their villa. “Maybe ten weeks will do it,” Maggie estimates.
Dolores is training to qualify as a space pilot. Pete has had a call to his home planet, Corsair, to save them from disaster, so they set off in that direction to give Dolores more space hours, only to slight error of course which leaves them in a horrible mess. Meanwhile the Imperium declares war on the Federation, while a little personal business by one of the senators leads him off in the direction of the Viridian System to start a canny land grab.
Book 3: Zanzibar’s Rings
Status: in outline
Concerned that the asteroid belt might not hold enough orichalcum to keep them going, the Viridian System elders suggest Pete and the Swede check out the fifth planet, Zanzibar, which has twenty-four moons and a slender ring system (much like Saturn).
With the Imperium senator still sniffing around, there is trouble for Dolores who inadvertently becomes his personal chauffeuse. With the refugees from Pete’s home planet needing more resources to help them rebuild their civilisation, there are enough sparks to fuel a fire–and then the Federation and Imperium arrive to argue about the wealth of Zanzibar’s Rings.