I’ve been thinking a lot of what Sefiros Eishi is, and I’ve come to the conclusion that I haven’t been specific about the story’s essential definition.

I started years ago when I first saw Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers. The transforming heroes just seemed cool to me, so I definitely wanted masked superheroes. But I also knew that I wanted to portray the morphing part as seriously as possible. I wanted to bring that part of Power Rangers to an adult audience. In order to do that, I had to slowly expose the morphing element slowly. That exposure came in the form of the Lynx villains and the Sutyr character.

But I had another problem. I didn’t want a fairy-tale fantasy. I wanted a medieval realm grounded in realism. I’m not George R.R. Martin (whose historical accuracy of medieval-era realms resulted in the Game of Thrones series), but reading him and others like him (Robert Jordan) inspired me to write my fantasy as real as possible. There are no dragons. There are thieves and warriors and lovers; pirates and queens and prostitutes, anything I could think of to make the characters grounded. I think I’ve done a good balancing act. Hopefully readers will see that.