The Inspiration for RealmShift and MageSign

The Inspiration for RealmShift and MageSign

Guest Post by Alan Baxter:

The inspiration for RealmShift and MageSign, what they’re about and what’s next

As this was the last day of my blog book tour and Lord Shaper was kind enough to host me, I thought it would be a good opportunity to talk about what inspired the novels RealmShift and MageSign and where my writing is heading next.

The original idea that became RealmShift arrived in the form of the main character, Isiah. I spent a couple of years in the mid 90s travelling, or, as I prefer to think of it, walking the Earth like Caine in Kung Fu. While I was walking I made the conscious decision that I was going to be a writer. With that decision, as if by magic, came the idea of Isiah.

I began to consider this guy and his task. He’s essentially a human that got plucked from a very mundane existence and put in charge of possibly the most important thing in the world – preventing the gods from fighting so much that one of them becomes all powerful.

I pictured this human given incredible powers and immortality and the things he could learn over hundreds of years trying to keep the peace between all the gods that people believe in. Then I began to imagine those gods – Yahweh, Allah, Buddah, Odin, Legba, Quetzlecoatl and so on, and I realised that I had a pallet rich in colour; a base that could spawn numerous interesting and action-packed stories. The concept for RealmShift was born.


Once I settled down a bit from my wanderings I started to write the book and I began to have a lot of fun. I figured out a scenario that would require Isiah’s talents, a world-shattering disaster if he failed and the story began to tell itself. I got to play with all kinds of religious mythologies, crystal skull mythos, fantastic characters from all kinds of pantheons and I got to wrap it all up in a rollicking action thriller. When you have the devil himself as a supporting character it’s hard not to have fun.

During the writing of RealmShift I began to get inklings of inspiration for a sequel. By the time I’d finished RealmShift, many of the scenes for MageSign had coalesced in my mind. In RealmShift, Isiah has to track down a murdering blood mage called Samuel Harrigan and convince him to finish something he started. Harrigan was mentored by an even more powerful blood mage, known only as the Sorcerer. In MageSign, Isiah goes after the Sorcerer to stop him making any more evil prodigies like Samual Harrigan. Except the Sorcerer is far bigger and better organised than Isiah ever imagined and has a truly audacious plan for the world.

Once I’d written RealmShift I was pretty much ready to get on with writing MageSign. So that’s what I did. I’ve ended up with two novels that I’m extremely proud of. I think they’re great yarns, exciting and thought-provoking, and they haven’t had a bad review yet, which is incredibly gratifying. Hopefully I’ve piqued your interest and you’ll go and buy them now – all the links to make that easy can be found at the end of this article.

So what’s next? I’ve had several people ask me if I’m going to write another Isiah book. I’ve had a few people demand that I do, which is very good for my ego even if it is slightly creepy. But here’s the thing. I had the idea for RealmShift and wrote that book as a single novel. In the process of writing it the ideas for MageSign presented themselves and I wrote that book too. Both novels can be read on their own even though you get a lot more by reading them both in order. And I’m aware that the character of Isiah is a good one and there is a lot of scope for writing more about him. I’d really like to explore his character more and I really enjoy writing for him. But right now I don’t have an idea that makes me really excited; an idea that makes me want to write another book.


At least, not for Isiah. I am very excited about some ideas that I have for an entirely new book and I’ve recently begun work on it. It’s going to be in a similar vein, set in the “universe” I’ve created, if you like (even though my books are set here and now). I’m really amped up about writing this next book and I think it’s going to be very exciting, dark and powerful. I’m considering a cameo appearance or two here and there, but I’ll promise no more on that front now.

But rest assured, there’s legs in the Isiah character yet and I’m sure I’ll visit him again in future books. For now, enjoy RealmShift and MageSign. Keep an eye on my blog for news of the new book as I progress with it and I’ll be sure to let everyone know through the blog as and when I plan any more Isiah stories.

As ever, if you do read the books please drop by my website and send me an email to let me know what you thought of them. And if you enjoyed them, tell all your friends and family to check them out.

Alan Baxter

Alan Baxter is the author of the dark fantasy thrillers RealmShift and MageSign.

RealmShift has been described as “inventive”, “action-packed”, “thought provoking”, “a novel I am loathe to put down”, “fast paced and full of vibrancy”

MageSign has been called “a fast-paced ride through a visceral reality which holds a mirror up to today’s apathetic society”, “a fast paced supernatural adventure that will leave readers rethinking how they view the Cosmos”, “…a gritty tale of blood rituals, mystery, and mysticism… grabs hold of the reader and doesn’t let go.”

Both books are available through indie publisher Blade Red Press in multiple formats at multiple locations:

Print editions from

RealmShift @

MageSign @

Kindle editions from

RealmShift @

Print editions at

RealmShift @

MageSign @

Muliple format ebooks from

RealmShift @

MageSign @

You can also contact the publisher directly at

Learn all about the author, read Alan’s blog and read lots of free short fiction, a novella and the first three chapters of both RealmShift and MageSign at Alan’s website:

3 Responses to “The Inspiration for RealmShift and MageSign”

  1. Alan says:

    Thanks for supporting the tour! If you want to read Isiah’s adventures, as well as all the various editions linked above, there’s a special offer on at the moment.

    Extended for one more week, the Smashwords editions of both RealmShift and MageSign are available for just US$1 each.

    To get your special priced copies all you have to do is enter a discount code at the checkout. This will change the price from the usual US$3.50 to a special price of US$1.

    Go to for RealmShift and enter code ZR95S at the checkout;

    Go to for MageSign and enter SF97B at the checkout.

    I also have my novella Ghost Of The Black: A ‘Verse Full Of Scum at Smashwords for free all the time. Go to to grab your copy of that.

    Please spread the word about this special offer and hopefully lots of people will take advantage of getting two novels for just two bucks. Can’t say fairer than that.

    If anyone has any questions about any of this stuff or the post above, feel free to leave comments here – I’ll check back often. And thanks again to Lord Shaper!

  2. BT says:

    Always cool to hear how something began – even cooler that something new is in the brewing.

    I shall watch your progress with interest.

  3. Alan says:

    Thanks BT. It won’t be an Isiah book as such, but he’ll be around…


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