About

ALCHEMIST, ARCHITECT, ARTIST.

Imagination3WELCOME TO STERLING & STONE, home to Sean, Dave, and Johnny — known around these parts as “the alchemist,” “the architect,” and “the artist.”

Nothing is more important to us than our readers. Without you, we couldn’t entertain people for a living by telling the stories we love to tell.

Thanks for being here.

Three years ago Dave and I (Sean) published the serialized series Yesterday’s Gone, then changed our lives by starting The Self-Publishing Podcast with Johnny.

Now we host two shows, have three publishing imprints (Collective Inkwell, Realm & Sands, and the children’s line, Guy Incognito), produce an adult line with naughty storyteller Lexi Maxxwell, and have written more than three million words together with over ONE THOUSAND 5-star reviews across all our lines.

We love our readers, and readers love our work. 

Visit Our Worlds

Collective Inkwell (Horror, Sci-Fi, and Nightmares Come True)

CI3I’ve worked with Dave for six amazing years. We’ve written everything from potty training articles to post-apocalyptic fiction. I am exponentially better for falling in with such a brilliantly creative partner just weeks into my online adventure.

Our imprint, Collective Inkwell, specializes in dark horror and sci-fi. We build our preliminary worlds together, then Dave frames them out, does his share of the writing, then passes the copy to me. I fill in the blanks, then edit and polish our draft to eliminate the seams.

Our collaboration earns the Collective in CI’s name. Though we both touch the story multiple times through the process, our work reads in a single voice. CI draws on the sort of popcorn art Dave and I love most: TV shows like Breaking Bad, LOST, and The Wire. We write to entertain, frighten, and stare down the impossible. Dave writes to peer into his soul. I write to see what will happen next. Our blended vibe is a bit like JJ Abrams with Stephen King.

Together we’ve written the series Yesterday’s Gone, Available Darkness, WhiteSpace, ForNevermore, and Dark Crossings; the novels, Crash and Threshold; and two series with 47North: Z2134 and Monstrous. 

Writing with Dave is messy and magical.

Realm & Sands (All Genres Welcome)

RS5Look through the Realm & Sands catalogue, and you might think that we’re all over the place. It’s true; we are.

We’ve written sci-fi, fantasy, westerns, horror, and sitcom-style comedy.

We’ve written a spiritual epic, a philosophical series about the nature of consciousness, and a violent action thriller.

We’ve even written a series of fiction-as-nonfiction books penned by a made-up author who lives in the year 2097.

But no matter how “all over the place” Realm & Sands seems to be, a common thread runs through all of our books:

Our books are fun to write, and are therefore fun to read.

Some of our titles are designed to excite you. And some to scare. Some would carry a hard R rating, but our Unicorn Western series is appropriate for children and loved by our own.

We want some of our stories to make you laugh, most to make you think, and some to make you cry. But no matter what modality a certain tale hits, we think you will have fun reading it.

I (again, Sean) am Realm & Sands’s primary architect. I build the world, create an outline for Johnny, hand it over, then wait for a finished first draft. I then revise Johnny’s draft to make it shine. The results of our idea-articulation-polish process are much better — and more fun — than either of us could do on our own.

We start with strong concepts, and tightly refine them. In between the beginning and the end are the often-surprising twists and turns that Johnny finds while exploring the story away from my beats.

Together, we’ve written the series, Unicorn Western, The Beam, Robot Proletariat, Namaste, Cursed, and The Dream Engine along with the LOL comedies: Greens, Everyone Gets Divorced, and Space Shuttle. As of this writing (and don’t expect me to keep everything up to date!), our forthcoming project is a David-Lynch style, standalone novel with the working title The Axis of Aaron.

Writing with Johnny is always fun, and I love the way our work makes me (and our readers) think.

Guy Incognito (Books For Our Children)

Guy2I’ve been writing professionally since 2008, when my amazing wife, Cindy, gave me a MacBook. “Just start writing,” she said, back when we had a preschool and I wrote mostly for children.

I’ve wanted to write for that audience ever since, our children specifically.

The Guy Incognito titles Penny to a Million and Syllable Soup were written back then and are my oldest books.

The book Santa Claus EXPOSED: Don’t Read This Unless You Want to Know the Truth! was written for my daughter, Haley, as a Christmas present last year.

For my son, Ethan, I wrote the story, Help! A Robot Has Ruined My Life! for an upcoming Tales From the Terrible Scary collection.

In short, I started Guy for my children. Right now they’re in their prime reading years, inspiring the Guy Incognito line even further. And now, for the first time ever, Johnny and Dave are getting in on the game.

Johnny and I have finished the first book in our “sci-fi Harry Potter” series, Connor Kwik and the Deadbook Deception, and Dave and I will be working on The Far Side of Forever before the end of 2014.

I’m working on a sequel to Penny and another special story for this Christmas, as well as continued work with Rachael McNaught and David Masters (my collaborators for Tales From the Terrible Scary). Haley is also in the earliest stages of her very first book, which I will help her finish and publish under Guy’s name.

Writing for Guy (and our families) is magical. We hope you want to share these books with your children like we want to share them with ours.

Our Shows (One’s Good, the Other Not So Much)

SPP4I love The Self-Publishing Podcast. All three of us owe a lot to this show.

We get daily e-mails from writers telling us how much we have helped them by inspiring them to show up, do the work, and change their game.

But the podcast does all of that for us, too. And more.

The SPP is a live think tank where we think through our processes and strategies out loud and in public. Our show is frequently off topic and often NSFW, but always authentic. It’s three guys telling you what does and doesn’t work for them.

We love to share, especially with hardworking writers who want to get their art out into the world.

I also love Better Off Undead, but don’t think you should. It’s the “after hours” show for the SPP. It has no topics, is thoroughly crude, and serves no purpose to anyone in any place ever, except as a place for three guys (and their after-SPP guests) to be publicly obnoxious.

Stay away from this show at all costs, and be warned: we’ve heard it’s like a traffic accident. If you do look, you won’t be able to easily turn away.

Meet Our Team

The Alchemist: Sean Platt (Me)
Founder of Sterling & Stone and Guy Incognito. Co-founder of Collective Inkwell and Realm & Sands.

Photographic ArtistFrom designing story worlds to the website you’re reading this on right now, I do a bit of everything.

I love it all, but telling stories is my favorite, and I’m lucky that I get to do it with my best friends.

I live in Austin, Texas, with my (best friend) wife, Cindy, and my two amazing children, Ethan and Haley. I’m trying to get the guys here as fast as I can.

The Architect: Johnny B. Truant
Co-Founder of Realm & Sands

johnny-high-res3Before Realm & Sands, Johnny wrote the Fat Vampire series and The Bialy Pimps. Then, I convinced him it was way more fun to write collaboratively.

He (mostly) agreed, and since then we’ve written a few Harry Potter series’ worth of words together, including co-writing a full novel in thirty days for our “Fiction Unboxed” project.

Johnny would love to live in Austin, but is unfortunately stuck in Ohio for the time being.

The Artist: David W. Wright
Co-Founder of Collective Inkwell

daveinatreesmall224Though he is Eeyore to my unrelenting Tigger, we’ve managed to reinvent serialized fiction on Amazon with our golden age of TV-inspired serials.

Dave is involved in [REDACTED], lives in [REDACTED] with [REDACTED], is personally responsible for [REDACTED], and carries a decoy wallet at all times.

He may or may not move to Austin. He likes me and Johnny, but hates the heat and 93.4 percent of all people.

As a trio, we want you to be one of our favorite readers, and that means proving your importance to us by giving you free books, exclusive deals, and early sneak peeks. If that sounds awesome to you (and we really hope it does), download our FREE STARTER LIBRARIES IN THE LIGHT BLUE BOX AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS PAGE.

Thanks for reading …