The whole project started way back in 1994 while I was driving to my National Guard annual training at Camp Grayling, Michigan. It's a long, boring drive, and by chance, I had a notepad and pen handy. I began jotting down names of characters and places, rounding them out with background information (I am a trained professional on a closed course ...please do not attempt to write a novel while driving). For the next two years, when I had free time, I came back to that notepad and wrote some more. Before I knew it, I had the complete history for the races, from their development of space travel to the first war with the eeeevil Bromidians. Finally, I felt I was ready, and I dove right in. The first thing I noticed was that this isn't as easy as it seems at the outset. However, by writing the background information first, I was able to make the writing go much more smoothly than my first literary attempt: during the first Gulf War, in my down time, I tried to hand-write a novel (we didn't have computers available). The result was a bunch of drivel, held together by storylines so closely related to several role-playing games that some might call it plagiarism. Fortunately, I realized this before I had more than 50 or 60 pages done. I might still have it around somewhere, which would be useful the next time I go camping and need to start a campfire.
I finally finished the initial writing of this book in the summer of 2001. Many who read the book assume the terrorist element is a direct result of the attacks of 9/11, but the book was actually finished before that terrible day. I read it, rewrote it, read it, rewrote it, ad infinitum, until I felt it was ready. Imagine my chagrin when the first publisher I sent it to didn't want to publish it! The cycle of submit-decline-resubmit went on for about two years. My sister-in-law, Beth, made some very helpful suggestions about additions and subtractions for the text, which I believe vastly improved the book's readability. Finally, in the 2005 edition of Writer's Digest, I located a publishing company called Medallion Press. Their response to my query was different from the others: where before, I had received form letters rejecting my work, this time I received something a bit more promising. They said they liked the storyline, but thought I should seek out a professional editor to help me out, and resubmit my work. Enter Marti Kanna of New Leaf Editing. I sent her my first three chapters, and for a reasonable rate, she did an excellent job editing my work. It really opened my eyes to major writing problems I had. My only writing training has been for research papers, not novels, and that meant my writing was too stiff and formal. Using her work as a template, I redid the entire book. The result is pictured at the top of the page. The call came on Christmas Day 2005...and I can't think of a better Christmas present.
"At last, a space opera sci-fi novel like the good old days. It is so hard to find good sci-fi adventure, but Killing Frost, fits the bill. We follow a special ops military unit of the future as they battle an alien race and political traitors within the ranks of their government, including amongst their own people. This is a fast paced story that keeps the tension up until the very end. All the elements are there imperfect protagonists, heroines, villains we expect and love to hate, treasonous friends and loyal friend, an evil alien race that may not be completely evil, and constant changing technology. It includes warrior ethos and idealistic values."
~ Bob Spear, Publisher and Chief Reviewer Heartland Reviews
"From hand-to-hand combat to spectacular battles in space, THE KILLING FROST packs a punch and knows how to keep those pages turning... this was a very satisfying read. Message to Mr. Gamboe, 'please keep Arano Lakeland in your thoughts for future work. That's one great character.'"
~ Shawn P. Madison, The Eternal Night
"The Killing Frost is an entertaining space opera... fans of military space opera will appreciate the exploits of this no-nonsense hero and his loyal troops and hope this book is the first in a series because it is totally enthralling."
"Gamboe puts his military background to good use, and his future events mirror current ones."