Byron Bartlett

Science Fiction & Fantasy

Author Profile

Byron  Bartlett

Byron Bartlett is a Chicago area author of vague renown. He graduated from a college that’s no longer accredited. He was an editor and staff writer for a boating magazine that no longer exists. He works for a company that was swallowed by another company who was then swallowed by a larger company. He loves stories like Battle Royale and Ichi the Killer, and hopes to bring the same level of dark humor and viscerally titillating violence to his own writing. His debut novel, Violent Souls, is the first book in the Blood City Chronicles.


Violent Souls (Blood City Chronicles, Book 1)

Science Fiction & Fantasy

In a city where mega-corporations control every aspect of life—and death—their most efficient assassin is waking up and turning her wrath back on them.

Freelance assassin Sasha lives on a man-made planet designed to house the unwanted in the city of Chicago, a tinderbox where one spark threatens to ignite a rebellion. In a bid to make herself the best in her field, Sasha had her empathy removed. Now, she’s the perfect killer who takes on even the most vulgar jobs. But her perfection comes at a price: feelings don’t come easy.

Just as Sasha gets her most important assignment to date, one which promises the promotion of Cysta Por Ruverno—Killer of Distinction—her surgery starts to wear off. New emotions begin to cripple her job performance and Sasha becomes the next target on the chopping block. But Sasha isn’t going down without a fight. With her and her friends lives on the line, she’ll stop at nothing to take her enemies down.

Fast-paced and deliciously violent, this debut novel of the Blood City Chronicles will have you at the edge of your seat and questioning our own views on corporations and morality.

Book Bubbles from Violent Souls (Blood City Chronicles, Book 1)


In this excerpt, we see Kergan and how she recoils in horror at her ability to inflict pain. Even though she's been training for it, the very real feel of attempting to hurt someone else shocks Kergan's system. This scene was meant to stand out against the casual violence perpetrated by other characters in the novel.

Just a Statistic

The phrase, "One death is a tragedy, one millions is a statistic" was running through my head when I wrote this section. I also wanted to throw in a darkly funny comment on how we accept death by famine but are repelled at death by war.

Explaining Versus Excuses

This chapter was used to give some background on the bad guy Drake. There's this balance I wanted to strike between explaining why he is versus excusing why he is. I was also able to explore how the winners of society lived. With a nod to the idea that Drake inherited his wealth.

Exporing a Character In Juxtaposition

The goal with this chapter was to compare and contrast Sasha's feelings from the first time they burn a town down and now. I also wanted to have her test the waters with her trainees to see if they could be controlled, or were rabid dogs. I think you get to know a lot more about the three characters, Sasha, Jonas and Jessi.

Character Building

This section was an attempt to build the internal life of Cadyn. She is painted as nothing but a brute to this point. I wanted to show a private side to her which would be more relatable to the reader and give them a way to connect to Cadyn.

RIng Of Fire

This was a chance to expound on Caydn's training acumen through showing not telling. Cadyn comes off as an experienced and thoughtful fighter. Her temper does not get the best of her as she stays calm and collected in the ring. This section show the reader there is more to Cadyn than just her fits of anger.

All Hail The Company

This section touches on the history of the 3 planets that created Earth. Each planet is ruled by the system that controls them. In Riestovik's case it's the corporations. I wanted Riestovik to serve as the corporate ideal, a society solely dedicated to the accumulation of capital. This was a chance to hammer home their influence on Earth.

Creating A History

This was the first time Auntie Belle and Sasha interact. I wanted to explore their relationship while hinting at dynamic between trainer and trainee. I was also able to reinforce Sasha's difficulty relating to others, even people she was 'close' to personally. This section is part of the build to Sasha meeting the kids.

Teasing Out a Relationship

This is the first time Rafe and Sasha meet in the novel. Though I have mentioned them having a previous relationship. I wanted to have Sasha meet someone in her past who knew her with no empathy. I could demonstrate how her demeanor has changed through Rafe's reactions. I also like the world building and describing the city when it was empty. Walking the streets of a major city when they're empty is surreal feeling.


There's a couple of things I wanted to accomplish here. The first the machine that acts as boss. A heavy handed metaphor, but I was mocking they way companies rely on outdated and even damaged technology. The description of the Dihtermetic is of a worn down old speaker box. Like a boombox found in your basement in after 20 years. Second I wanted to establish how the market as religion is used as a weapon against workers. Jorge is forced to take less money as a sacrifice to the gods of the free market.

Good Guys for Pay

This sequence is flashback introducing Kergan Satre II and the crew in charge of keeping her safe. The world of the ship was probably the part I enjoyed writing the most as both the ship and the crew had these distinct personalities I could really play with.

The New Kids

Instead of dipping a toe, this chapter jumps into the pool of violence Jonas and Jessi bring everywhere they go. Total immersion before I elaborate and humanize them. It demonstrates both the power and harmful effects of Jessi's surgery.

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