CROOKED V.1 Author Spotlight — Wade Peterson

Welcome to CROOKED V.1! In celebration of launch week, I’m featuring some of the authors whose stories appear in the anthology. Today, we’re chatting with Wade Peterson (who I’ve featured here before).

Wade Peterson is the author of the Badlands Born series and lives in Dallas, Texas. His stories have received honorable mentions in the Writers of the Future contest and are available online and on his website.

When not writing, he’s in the back yard trying to master the arcane mysteries of Texas barbecue while also wrangling his over-scheduled teenagers, serving the whims of two passive-aggressive cats, and agreeing with whatever wine his wife pairs with dinner.

Learn more about Wade at


Tell us a bit about your story and the story world
Full Core takes place in a small corner of space called The Confederation of Humanity, a cluster of human enclaves that splintered from the Human-AI Sodality after the AI wars. It’s the story of a pit-fighting robot, a clone mechanic and their gangster owner.

What was the inspiration behind this story?
Combat sports have always attracted whispers about mob influences, match fixing, and shady characters profiting at the fighter’s expense. I also wanted to tell a story about people finding the gumption to rise above their own expectations. Shows like BattleBots and Real Steel influenced the action sequences, and I used to program industrial robots once upon a time so I drew on that background, too. 

If you could travel to any science fictional world, where would you go and what would you do?
Iain M. Banks’ Culture, no question. I’d start by hopping on a GSV and start rubbing elbows with aliens and machine minds with an eye to departing on the Masaq’ Orbital from Look to Windward and sail down its Great River.

What are some of your favorite sci-fi crime books or stories?
The Stainless Steel Rat series by Harry Harrison was a favorite of mine growing up, a series about a criminal that catches criminals. A Game of Universe and The Quantum Magician are SF riffs on classic ensemble capers like The Sting and Ocean’s Eleven. If you like football even a little bit, Scott Siegler’s GFL series is well worth your time. It’s Any Given Sunday meets The Godfather: aliens playing football for team owners who also happen to be the heads of their own crime syndicates. 

What authors have inspired your writing?
Too many to list! I think you’ll find traces of Iain M. Banks, Neal Asher, Frank Herbert, and Steve Perry in my science fiction.

What are you working on next?
I am writing a full-length space opera series set in the Sodality. If you enjoyed this appetizer, you’ll love the main course!



Get it here.

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