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Sat, Oct. 17th, 2020, 12:00 am
Sticky Post: About my fiction, and where you can find it.

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Coming soon from Galaxy Press: Writers of the Future V32, containing my story "Cry Havoc," the Q4 3rd place winner! Along with a bunch of other stories from a bunch of other really cool people.

More information, as well as links to buy it from all the usual suspects, is here.

Now available from WordFire Press, my first novel!

After seven horrific months as a POW, Army Ranger-turned-PI Ben Lockwood just wants a safe, boring life. With his boss on vacation, he takes what looks like an easy case of pharmaceutical espionage he can work from his desk.

Now he's caught in a three-way collision course between a ruthless werewolf on the hunt for a cure for his dying vampire wife, a mad scientist whose multinational company doesn't even research supernatural medicine--and himself. Ben's nanotech-injected blood holds the key to the vampire's recovery, and the werewolf doesn't much care if he lives or dies in the harvesting.

My first original short story, Illegal Beagles, is available right here on this LJ as a freebie. Read, enjoy, feedback is adored. There is a completely optional "donate" button at the bottom if you feel like tossing a couple of bucks my way. ;)

Summary: Russell Fisk, the captain of the tramp freighter Inquisitive Tamandua, hates transporting live cargo, but a creditor has him over a barrel. So now he has to get a pack of hunting Beagles to the client, while dodging Feds and dealing with an alien passenger who's more than slightly odd. And, oh, hey, one of the dogs is in labor.

I've had... *counts* Uh. Umpty-foo number of short stories published in various venues. My Amazon Author Page is here.

I also wrote a pair of villain origin stories--the Demon-Prince and the Vampire--for Lord of the Dead, a tabletop hex-and-counter horror game from Pocket Options.

Meerkat Manners was published in Jouth #2 by Blaster Books.

Summary: The crew of the Inquisitive Tamandua is hired by a mob of meerkats to transport them to a new colony. Between their infighting and the new Fed-mandated AI, Russ and his crew will be lucky if they can stay sane, let alone out of jail.

Bear Essentials was published by World Weaver Press in the "Far Orbit" anthology. Julie Czerneda says: "Daring adventure, protagonists who think on their feet, and out of this world excitement! Welcome to FAR ORBIT, a fine collection of stories in the best SF tradition. Strap in and enjoy!" It's also available as a standalone on Amazon, published by Digital Science Fiction, or as part of the Infinity Cluster 6 anthology put out by the same outfit.

Summary: The intrepid crew of the Inquisitive Tamandua is hired to transport a "grizzly bear" to a monastery. But neither the bear nor the monastery are what they seem, and their routine (ha) job is complicated by a reporter who's all too eager for a scoop to bolster her flagging career.

Daddy's Little Girl was published in the "Putrefying Stories" anthology by Stupefying Stories. It's also available as a standalone from Digital Horror on Amazon.

Summary: A father will do anything to save his teenage daughter in a zombie apocalypse...

Guardians of Public Safety was published in the "1st and Starlight" anthology, available on Amazon, put together by a bunch of Writers of the Future Finalists.

Summary: Keniesha Washington lives in a rough neighborhood filled with gangs, pimps, and drug dealers. But the supernatural cure for what ails it may be worse than the disease...

That Which is Hidden was published in the "Chronology" anthology by Curiosity Quills. This was my prizewinning story for the Salty Dog writing contest at Salt City Steam.

Summary: Gideon Bassett needs to solve the triple mystery of his sweetheart’s murder, a train robbery, and a bank heist. Problem is, he’s been outed as a werewolf and is a fugitive himself...

Habeas Felis was serialized by Stupefying Stories Showcase in three parts:
Part One
Part Two
Part Three

Summary: Daniella and her friends Gris and Mac must leave a talking cat in a dragon's cave for its annual tribute without being eaten by the grumpy dragon or murdered by goblins and mountain trolls. And they have to do it before a rival team beats them to the punch.

The Road to Hell was published by Domain SF. It's a free read, but it requires registration.

Summary: Oceanic algae farms have dumped extra oxygen into our atmosphere, with catastrophic results. Insects are now prehistoric size and we use baseball bats to swat mosquitoes. But the cure might be worse than the disease, as a grief-stricken woman learns to her detriment. And the planet's.

Servile Spirits to Invent was published in "The Death God's Chosen" by Deepwood Publishing.

Summary: A village decimated by plague uses corpses to till the fields so they don't starve. However, the entities animating the bodies have their own agenda.

War of the Were-Mice was published by Unlikely Story for their April Fool's issue. Be thou warned: This was written on purpose to be terrible. The challenge was to "write the worst piece of fiction you can stand to see under your byline." So... I did. It's a flash piece, so you won't lose too many brain cells by reading it. They also interviewed me.

Summary: The house vermin battle for supremacy.

Of Were-Critters, Widow Women, and Water Rights was published in the "Ways of Magic" anthology by Deepwood Publishing.

Summary: Mike Vaughn, a werewolf who works security for a rail line in Reconstruction Texas, is embroiled in a feud between a family of brothers and his ex-sweetheart. Throw in a professor with a water-sucking contraption, a preacher with a dark past, and a hunter, and Mike is having a truly rotten day.

Different in Blood was published in Plasma Frequency.

Summary: Ben Lockwood, werewolf private investigator, finds himself embroiled in the weirdest cheating spouse case ever. What the hell is a squonk? He's about to find out.

Showing Faeries for Fun and Profit was published in Stupefying Stories.

Summary: Faerie shows are cooperative enterprises between humans and faeries. When a faerie is kidnapped, it's a race against time -- and against faerie rights activists, the larger Fae, and an unscrupulous fellow competitor -- to find her before something terrible happens.

The Cow and the Beanstalk was published in Azure Valley, an imprint of TM Publishing.

Summary: We all know the story of Jack the Giant Killer. How he traded a cow for some magic beans, killed a giant, avenged his father, and lived happily ever after. Now, everyone assumes the bean man was out to cheat Jack -- but, you know, the beans really were magic. He delivered on his promise and then disappeared, never to be seen again. So, what was so special about a cow, that a fellow would be willing to trade beans like that for her?

Sensory Overload was published in Plasma Frequency. And you can listen to the audio version at StarShipSofa.

Summary: A security guard with electronic sensory enhancements accompanies a group of art students down to the home planet of a new alien species. While there, he sees things he shouldn't--but he's not sure if he's really seeing them, or if the enhancements have finally made him crack.

"Affairs of Dragons" was published in Renard's Menagerie, which is sadly defunct. It's also available through Anthology Builder, which is where the link to the story will take you. And it was reprinted in the "Far Orbit: Apogee" anthology by World Weaver Press. You can read the beginning of it here. It's the sequel to "Illegal Beagles."

Summary: The crew of the Inquisitive Tamandua is hired by a mother dragon to move her eggs from one planet to another. She's in the middle of an ugly divorce and an uglier clan war. The eggs aren't supposed to hatch...

"Bitter Honey" was published in AfterburnSF but can no longer be read online. It's available through Anthology Builder here, and it also appears in the "Fight On! Weird Enclaves and Black Pits" anthology. The link in the title will take you to a short preview, and it's available through Amazon here.

Summary: Desperate faeries raid a beehive for the honey they need to make it through a deadly winter. But at what cost to both faeries and bees?

"Fortunes of Soldiers" was published by Cosmos magazine, with a fabulous illustration by Emrah Elmasli. You can also buy it through Anthology Builder (link takes you to a preview of it), and it's in the You're Not Alone anthology edited by Damien Broderick.

Summary: Two week's pay for one night's work, babysitting a spoiled asteroid heiress? Mercenary Jake O'Dell thinks all his jobs should be this easy. Until, of course, everything goes disastrously wrong.

"Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf" was published by Darwin's Evolutions, with a fabulous illustration by Karl Nordman. It's available as a trade paperback for $9.99 (along with several other stories by several other awesome writers), or a high-quality .pdf download for $2.73. It's also available through Anthology Builder. You can read the beginning of it here, and purchase it here.

Summary: Mark Newman loves being a werewolf. But when his wife finds out she's pregnant, she attempts to cure him against his will, in his sleep. Naturally, it goes horribly wrong--and it goes even wronger when she gets a well-meaning priest involved, poor fellow.

My author page on Amazon is here. My author page at Anthology Builder is here. You can read more of my fiction right here on this LJ. I have a "DVD extra" from my first novel that introduces a couple of characters to each other under less-than-optimal circumstances, and you can read that here. This is one of my very favorite scenes. I post occasional snippets of my stories, and those can be accessed via my snippets tag.

Most of this LJ is me whining about writing, with some Real Life and Fannish Squee and a scosh of Politics thrown in on occasion. I have more information on my User Info page, or you can peruse my tags and see if anything in there looks interesting. You can also follow me on Twitter or friend me on Facebook. I don't always follow back on Twitter, especially if I don't know you, but I do friend back on FB.

So. Come in, kick back, have fun. If you feel like commenting, please do.

Sun, May. 29th, 2016, 10:49 am
My tweets

Thu, May. 26th, 2016, 03:00 pm
My tweets

  • Wed, 15:38: Who's going to put us over $2K on the Singular Irregularity Kickstarter? You WANT this time-travel-gone-wrong antho! https://t.co/E6rK9zuklM
  • Thu, 10:32: And I now have a "Writer at Work: PLEASE DISTURB before I beat my Muse to death" card. One more thing crossed off my to-do list...
  • Thu, 12:29: Have dug out the books I need autographed for #MisCon. Packing continues apace!
  • Thu, 13:16: More MisCon prep... https://t.co/2ysxHRkoTJ
  • Thu, 13:29: Hey, @LinkedIn, I'm not a member and never will be. Why don't you have an option for THAT in your emails asking me to connect with a friend?
  • Thu, 14:18: This shit right here is why I would own a self-driving car. I don't WANT to drive 8 hours to a convention, buuuuut I might have to.

Thu, May. 26th, 2016, 01:17 pm
More MisCon prep...

My house is now (relatively) clean.
I have packed the books I want to have signed.
I have packed everything else, except for my computer and my deodorant, both of which will go in when I'm done using them tomorrow.
I have printed out two copies of the story I collaborated on with my RP partner.
I have made and printed my "Writer at Work" sign, which amuses me because I am easily entertained.
I have printed out the part of the RoboBunny story I'm going to read at my reading.

All I have left is:
  • Turn off Facebook notifs (because I really do not want to have to keep track of a couple hundred of those per day while I'm at a convention, or come home to "AOL: 800" in my X-notifier).
  • Check the airline loads again, which I should do a bit later today to get a more accurate idea of whether I'll be able to get a seat on tomorrow's flight.
  • Finish the workshop crits. I'm mostly done with those, but I'd like to poke them a bit more.

I still feel like I'm forgetting something, and I no doubt have, because I always do. But I'm as ready (at this point) as I will ever be.

Tue, May. 24th, 2016, 11:39 pm
My tweets

Tue, May. 24th, 2016, 10:40 pm
Oh, come ON.

You know, I get that I will not like every story that every publication puts out. That is a given, considering taste and all. Even a publication that has the good sense to publish one of my own stories will have a clunker on occasion.

But I just had the misfortune of listening to a story that is so over-the-top egregiously paranoid that it reads like a parody of itself. It's one of those hand-waving "oh my God, what if those gun nuts got their way and everyone had to carry a *gasp, huff, case of the vapors* weapon" stories. And it's written by someone who has apparently never even talked to a concealed-carry permit holder, who thinks if carrying a gun became "ordinary," we would suddenly forget that a gun is a deadly weapon that you can kill someone with if you handle it carelessly.

As every. Single. Idiot. In this story. Proceeds to do. With predictable results, because DUH.

Okay, look. I live in a state that has issued over a million concealed-carry permits. Granted, some of those are for folks who don't live here. But this is a state with a population of a little over two million people. We also have open carry, which means that you don't even need a permit to carry a gun in a hip holster where everyone can see it, so long as it's two actions from firing.

And hey, stunningly enough, it's not the Wild West around here. (Even the Wild West wasn't, not really. An armed society is a polite society.) I don't know anyone who treats their guns with the casual disdain the utter morons in this story do. We treat them like the deadly weapons they fucking are, because we are not fucking stupid. They're not water pistols, for God's sake.

So, please. If you want to write a "cautionary tale" about how GUNS ARE BAD OMG, at least do a modicum of research before you start your self-righteous lecture so that I don't get a headache from rolling my eyes that hard.

Mon, May. 23rd, 2016, 10:01 pm
MisCon prep continues apace!

Today, I have:

Paid my bills
Printed out my business cards
Gotten groceries
Gone to the bank
Gotten the windshield replaced in the PT Cruiser
Gotten the alternator replaced in the Challenger
Programmed my DVR
Picked up my Deadpool bluray
Picked up the copy of Locus Magazine that I'm in

I've also worked on edits on the WotF24hour story. I'm much happier with it, as my protag really needed an onscreen epiphany rather than having it just hinted at. I have printed out the stories for the writers' workshop as well, but I haven't dived into those just yet.

I've changed my hotel reservation from arrival Thursday to arrival Friday (saving me $140), and made flight reservations. I will check the loads Thursday night and decide if I'm actually going to fly out (Oh, God, I hope so, I do not want to drive 8 hours up and 8 hours back, plus it saves me gas money).

I still need to clean two bathrooms, get the PT Cruiser actually inspected (which I will do Wednesday, since it's Free Sticker day at the inspection place), and pack. Packing entails digging out the Butcher and Rothfuss books I want signed in this go-round.

But hey. I've done good work today. Maybe I should sit back and relax with a bad werewolf movie or a good Tollywood flick...

Mon, May. 23rd, 2016, 05:53 pm
My tweets

  • Sun, 19:19: X-notifier: No new messages. The best words on my browser after clearing an inbox of over 500 unread emails...
  • Sun, 19:29: NEARLY HALFWAY THERE: https://t.co/E6rK9zLVKm There's come cool stretch goals forthcoming too. You know you want this book.
  • Sun, 20:58: Oh, for... What happened to KILL THEM ALL BECAUSE THEY ARE BAD PEOPLE rather than SETTLE IN WITH THEM. Continuity, what is that. #amediting
  • Sun, 21:12: Also, this thing is still called [Horrible Title Redacted]. I might want to see to that. #amediting
  • Mon, 11:01: Time for another editing pass, while my care is serviced. Let's see if this emotionally-stunted writer can punch up the emotional kick...
  • Mon, 15:45: Hey @google, I'm really tired of changing my password every time YOU think something happened with my account.. ASK IF IT WAS ME FFS.

Sun, May. 22nd, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

Sat, May. 21st, 2016, 05:14 pm
My MisCon schedule!

Join us at MisCon 30, Memorial Day weekend (May 27-30), in Missoula, MT, at the downtown Holiday Inn. Guests will include Jim Butcher, Patrick Rothfuss, Kevin J. Anderson, Carol Berg, CJ Cherryh, Steve Diamond, Todd Lockwood, Peter Orullian, Christopher Paolini, Jeff Sturgeon, Robin Hobb and many many others.

MisCon is one of my very favorite conventions. I've been twice and plan on making it a regular thing. I'll be arriving (assuming plans work out and the flights don't close up on me) around 1pm-ish on Friday, staying at the hotel (and I could use a roomie who doesn't mind someone who snores), and leaving on Tuesday.

My schedule (so far, subject to change) is as follows:

Fri 5:00 - 5:50 PM, Beyond The Fangs, Ballroom B
Moderator: Diana Pharaoh Francis (Di); Panelists: Jim Butcher, Diana Pharaoh Francis (Di), Julie Frost, Rhiannon Held, Randy Henderson
Urban Fantasy encompasses more than just vampires and werewolves, yet it seems that the fanged creatures of the night have captured the limelight. What other creatures, dangerous and ghastly, lurk around dark city corners?

Sat 11:00 - 11:50 AM, What I Learned at Writers of the Future, Jefferson
Moderator: James Glass; Panelists: Kevin J Anderson, Julie Frost, James Glass, Randy Henderson
Join Writers of the Future Contest judge Kevin J Anderson and past winners and as they teach you what they learned at the WoF contest. Learn the tips and tricks that will propel you forward in your career.

Sat 1:00 - 1:50 PM, World Building 101, Ballroom C
Panelists: Kent Davis, Deby Fredericks, Julie Frost, Hugh S. Gregory
Let's talk about world building. Is it better to start with a fully fleshed out world or one that evolves as you write? Setting is still world building. How do you make it a living, breathing entity within your book? What elements do you need? Religions, cultures, races, diseases, economics?

Sat 3:00 - 3:50 PM, Fiction Slam Readings, Tent By the Trees
Moderator: Rhiannon Held; Panelists: Julie Frost, Rhiannon Held, Frog Jones
Come hear your favorite pro read a selection of their work.
1500: Rhiannon Held
1520: Julia Frost
1540: Frog Jones

Sat 4:00 - 4:50 PM, Meet & Greet/Signing: Randy Henderson/Julie Frost, Hotel Lobby of Doom
Panelists: Julie Frost, Randy Henderson
Meet a few of our authors, get signatures, and see what they're up to these days.

Sat 5:00 - 5:50 PM, Keeping the Momentum, Glacier
Moderator: Randy Henderson; Panelists: Diana Pharaoh Francis (Di), Julie Frost, Ann Gimpel, Randy Henderson
Maybe you're receiving some really great rejections, or perhaps you've got a couple short stories published--now what? How do you maintain that momentum? What's the next step? This is for those writers who are on the cusp of professionalism and those who want to learn what it's like.

Sun Noon - 12:50 PM, Flaws: a Double-Edged Sword, Ballroom B
Moderator: Julie Frost; Panelists: Julie Frost, Randy Henderson, Robin Hobb, J.A. Pitts
Many of our flaws can have beneficial features as well. Take Scarlett O'Hara, for example: she's manipulative...which makes her clever. She ambitious...which makes her tenacious and persistent. Join us as we talk about the dual nature of our weaknesses.

Mon 11:00 - 11:50 AM, Writing Part-Time, Glacier

Moderator: James Glass; Panelists: Spencer G. Ellsworth, Julie Frost, James Glass, Dean Wells
We often dream of becoming full-time writers, but what if you can’t? What if you don’t want to? In this panel we’ll discuss the pros and cons of writing part time, and more importantly, making time for your writing while still doing your day job.

I'm doing a workshop as well, Sunday from 10:00-11:00 in Room 218. The participants for this are pre-arranged.


Sat, May. 21st, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

Wed, May. 18th, 2016, 03:37 pm
My tweets

Sat, May. 14th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

Fri, May. 13th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

Thu, May. 12th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

Wed, May. 11th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

  • Tue, 12:18: Good God. "Make an EMERGENCY INVESTMENT to elect @realDonaldTrump," goes the robocall. I'm not voting for him; why would I send him money?

Tue, May. 10th, 2016, 01:58 am
My tweets

Sun, May. 8th, 2016, 08:52 pm
And this right here is why I always say...

"If a story fits the guidelines, no matter how loosely, even if they say it's a long shot? Send. It. Anyway.. Let the editor decide."

Yeah, I just got an email from a market that stated up front that it was only taking a couple of this type of story for their thing. And they are holding mine for further consideration. This is the fourth time this year that this has happened to me. Two of them are still being held while the markets are still open to subs. Two of them were acceptances.

Do not let the Perfect be the enemy of the Good.

Sun, May. 8th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

  • Sat, 22:49: I'll be on @KUTV2News This Morning Weekend tomorrow at approximately 7:45am, talking #WOTF32. Tune in or watch this space for the video!

Sat, May. 7th, 2016, 03:01 pm
My tweets

Fri, May. 6th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

  • Thu, 21:15: *cracks knuckles* I have an index card box, index cards, and nine different pen colors. Let's get this novel outline roughed in...
  • Thu, 21:33: Step 1: Color code characters and plots. Done. Step 2: Decide if Ben or Alex will take point on this one. Who's my main protag this time?
  • Fri, 10:39: This is the problem with an ensemble cast--giving them all something to do & then not letting the plot explode into a 200K-word behemoth...

Thu, May. 5th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

  • Thu, 11:47: Got my Captain America: Civil War tix -- tomorrow at 2:15pm. Yay for a cheap matinee and a theater that serves real food.

Wed, May. 4th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

Tue, May. 3rd, 2016, 10:55 am
My tweets

Thu, Apr. 28th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

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