From Novice to Notable: The Evolution of Steven Decker’s Writing Career

Steven Decker has written and published a good number of novels during the last several years. The author came out with Distant Finish and Projector for Sale in 2021, delivered Time Chain in the following year, and became productive in 2023 with several more books including the bestselling Child of Another Kind. Here is more detail on Steven Decker’s Writing Career.

While Decker didn’t start his life as an author, he developed a fascination with writing and storytelling since childhood. According to his account, his love for imagery through written words was born in his 5th grade. It was one of those blessed days when a seemingly unfortunate event sparked a bright light in one’s thoughts and triggered an undeniable enthusiasm.

It all began with a young Decker throwing a spitball at a classmate only to get caught by teacher Mrs. Brewer. Instead of forcing Decker to do some purposeless menial tasks, she made him read and memorize Robert Frost’s Stopping by Wood on a Snowy Evening. Such punishment served Decker well because, by the following day as he recited the poem, the student knew he discovered an unbound admiration for Frost’s ability to describe a mesmerizing view of nature with simple effective words. The poem carved a picture in Decker’s mind. He was inadvertently filled with overwhelming emotions of joy and bewilderment at the same time.

The passion remains. Decker has made it into a habit to read his every draft aloud to himself. It is like a preliminary test to see whether the storytelling part works. A novel is a story, so it has to sound and feel like one. Readers turn to fiction to escape from day-to-day mundanity and immerse themselves in an imaginary world. And it is the author’s job to describe the imaginary world believably. The words written in the novel should ease readers’ way into the fictional setting described in the story.

By the time Decker published Distant Finish in 2021, his world-building skills were already pretty much above average. The book itself doesn’t require a lot of world-building as it focuses on what is going on inside the mind of an athlete during a triathlon race. It doesn’t mean that world-building becomes unimportant in such a situation, but the main subjects here are the hope, the pain, the competition, and the struggle inside the head of a professional athlete. Distant Finish is not perfect, with some corny plotlines in many pages, but far from being a terrible read either.

The 2020 novel Projector for Sale seemed to mark Decker’s tendency from generic fiction into a fantastical and spiritual style. His world-building is getting more vivid as if his words paint pictures instead of simple backdrop scenes. There is always a hint of realism, thanks to rich characters and lifelike storyline. The characters feel human with complex problems yet relatable. They have their moments of struggles, fears, and triumphs that flow naturally as the plotline moves forward. Projector for Sale deals with some heavy topics like religions and paranormal subjects under the wrapping of science fiction.

Decker has written eight books so far:

Addicted to Time series

  • Time Chain (July 2022): the old-fashioned theme of time travel is observed from a different angle in the novel. Rather than being a novelty accessible by a select few characters, time travel is depicted as a practical exercise. Time Chain tells the stories of various individuals from different time frames, but they intertwine through their historical contexts.
  • The Balance of Time (April 2023): despite time travel being a practical idea, it remains tricky. A single alteration in a person’s historical background may generate an adverse effect that lasts through generations. For example, it is possible to bring someone from centuries in the past to live in the present, but the impact on humanity is difficult to justify. Manipulating the time comes with heavy consequences.
  • Addicted to Time (June 2023): time-travelling reveals the possibility of someone achieving immortality, although it may bring about a hefty price.

Notice the time gap between the 2nd and 3rd novels; Decker most likely had written both works when the former came out.

Another Kind series

  • Child of Another Kind (February 2023): a series of heavy subjects including science fiction, immortality, and second chances are strung into a single fantastic read about the mother-child relationship.
  • Earth of Another Kind (September 2023): species from other planets see Earth as their second home. Humanity and Earth are about to take some drastic changes but the nature of those changes is still clouded in obscurity.
  • Gods of Another Kind (expected publication October 2023): it turns out that humanity originated not from the Earth. The good thing is that Earth Station is now a utopia.

Stand-alone novels

  • Distant Finish (July 2021): clear imagery of athletes’ state of mind as they compete in a punishing triathlon race.
  • Projector for Sale (October 2021), republished as Walking into Dreams (June 2023): a story about a trauma survivor who finds refuge inside her dreams. Now that she has the power to materialize the dream into reality, she might want to leave it all behind and get back to reality.

We think Decker has found a good formula to blend science fiction, fantasy, and paranormal subject matters effectively. His themes are heavy, but the personable writing style makes it easy for readers to come along through the journey and enjoy the written visualization. Painting imagery has always been his strongest point, which continues to improve with every newer novel.

Have you read any of Steven Decker’s books? Can you compare the style with any other more popular authors? We’d love to hear from you.

Other things you might want to know:

Is there going to be an upcoming series from Steven Decker?

Not at the moment. The most recent series, Another Kind, is expected to conclude the story with the upcoming novel Gods of Another Kind.

Are “Projector for Sale” and “Walking into Dream” the same novel?

Apparently so, based on the description of both books.

Where to buy the books?

Most of his books are available as Kindle editions from Amazon. Some titles are available for free if you have a Kindle Unlimited subscription.

Check out other articles by month: