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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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Out now 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.

Serendi-bunny was published in the Singular Irregularity anthology edited by Kimber Grey. It's a short set in the Pack Dynamics 'verse.

Summary: Alex Jarrett may be a mad scientist, but he's a mad scientist on a mission to cure cancer. When he buys a pair of robot bunnies from the internet to help him accelerate his research, he gets more than he bargained for when they turn out to be assassin-bots sent from the future. With the help of his werewolf hacker friend Ben Lockwood, he has to figure out how to circumvent their programming before the cutest killers ever created put an end to not just his career, but his life.

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, and in an anthology titled "Largely Deceased" through them as well.

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. It is also available as a standalone from Digital Horror.

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. You can read it for free here.

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. You can also listen to the audio version at Far Fetched Fables.

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 (now sadly defunct). It was reprinted in 2nd and Starlight. And you can listen to it on Far Fetched Fables.

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. You can read it online here, or 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 "Roll the Bones" anthology. The link in the title will take you to a short preview.

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 also available as a high-quality .pdf download. You can get it through Anthology Builder as well. 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.

Mon, Oct. 24th, 2016, 11:09 am
My tweets

Wed, Oct. 19th, 2016, 07:38 pm
Pictures! from @Wolves_at_CWWC.

Man, I <3 my camera. This one is, by far, my favorite:

And you can see the rest under the cut... here.Collapse )

Tue, Oct. 18th, 2016, 03:00 pm
My tweets

  • Tue, 12:32: Scribbled a paragraph about how my tech works (sort of) so I can keep that in mind as I #amoutlining. 4400 words in this outline so far...

Mon, Oct. 17th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

  • Sun, 23:48: Note to self: You know those times when you allow yourself to get your hopes up for a story sub? STOP DOING THAT. It only ends in tears.

Sat, Oct. 15th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

  • Fri, 22:53: Had a wonderful time @Wolves_at_CWWC--got some amazing pictures, which I will post when I've got them decently sized for online viewing. <3

Wed, Oct. 12th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

  • Wed, 01:03: Added 300+ words to my novel outline & gave my villain more complexity and a literal Pet The Dog scene. Also figured out my protag's Truth.

Mon, Oct. 10th, 2016, 12:18 pm
My tweets

  • Mon, 11:42: Grace-kitty, you do not have a right front leg. Stop trying to swat the kitten with that paw.

Fri, Oct. 7th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

  • Thu, 21:17: *swears tiredly as I realize I accidentally sim-subbed a story*

Thu, Oct. 6th, 2016, 12:45 pm
My tweets

Mon, Oct. 3rd, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

Sun, Oct. 2nd, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

  • Sat, 20:34: The folks who didn't come to the American Fork Library author event today missed out. https://t.co/cJAZNbKcbZ
  • Sat, 22:05: @realDonaldTrump, yes, you're super rich, but you'd save some $$ by merging your mailing list so I'm not getting 3 pieces of identical mail.
  • Sat, 22:07: No, seriously, this does not scream "fiscal responsibility" to me. Rather, it says "inefficient bureaucracy." You might want to see to that.
  • Sat, 22:15: In writing news, I'm staring at this damned novelthing & the outline for it and wishing I could drink more. Because that would clearly help.
  • Sun, 11:04: It occurred to me this morning that if I do the seven-point outline for my villain, the rest of this novel might actually fall into place...

Sat, Oct. 1st, 2016, 08:34 pm
The folks who didn't come to the American Fork Library author event today missed out.

However, I did not miss out, because I tied for the win for the flash fiction contest with the handsome and hard-working Kevin Nielsen. The prompt was "Fire and/or Water," and since I'm not going to sub this anywhere, I give it to you as a little bit of free fiction. It stars Alex and Megan, and... go:

"Alex. What. In the world. Is that."

Megan's eye was amber. Again. I cringed, but not much, because this was really cool. Also, the scotch I'd consumed the previous night hadn't worn off yet.

"The fleasel was such a success, I thought I'd try a dragon." It had started as a green tree monitor, but now it had wings. And-- "Watch out!"

It burped out a flame, which set some paper ablaze. I grabbed a water bottle and dumped it over the paper, the dragon, and Megan's three-hundred-dollar Jimmy Choos.

"No," she said, in a tone that brooked no argument.



"I'll give it to Chambliss to... take care of?" Our butler knew a portal to someplace where questions weren't asked about things like dead bodies. Presumably, dragons too.

Ah, well. Maybe my next creation wouldn't try to set my wife on fire.

Sat, Oct. 1st, 2016, 03:02 pm
My tweets

Fri, Sep. 30th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

Thu, Sep. 29th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

Tue, Sep. 27th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

  • Tue, 10:29: "He'll hurt you in front-a me to make a point. And then I'll hafta kill him in front of everyone to make my own kinda point." #amwriting

Mon, Sep. 26th, 2016, 11:30 pm
My tweets

  • Mon, 15:05: Can't log in to @fiverr -- all I'm getting is an endless spinny circle. Anyone else?
  • Mon, 19:04: "Sit back and enjoy." No, that is the very LAST thing you should be saying about this debate. #apoxonboth
  • Mon, 19:06: ...bald-faced lie #1 from the MODERATOR. Nice.
  • Mon, 22:24: Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you... our best and brightest. Seriously, THIS is the best we could do? #apoxonboth #systemisbroken

Sun, Sep. 25th, 2016, 08:22 pm
I've been having a terrible time with this novel outline, but I've had a breakthrough.

I may have mentioned more than once that I'm not a natural novelist. The short story is the milieu that has chosen me, not the other way around. I wrote my first novel completely by accident, and writing one on purpose has been daunting, to say the least.

And things like yesterday and today are why we go to writing conferences even when we think we're pretty experienced at this stuff. As you know, Bob, I've been having a terrible time trying to outline this damned novel sequel. So there was an outlining presentation that said, basically, I was doing it wrong. I've been TRYING (and abjectly failing) to outline it from the top down.

She suggested we skip from the Hook to the Resolution, then bounce to the Midpoint, and THEN fill in the blanks.

Mind. Blown.

Not that "outline like that" was the solution that worked for me. It turned out that I didn't know what the Midpoint was until I knew what Pinch 1 was. However, it changed my paradigm enough that it led me to at least a partial solution to my dilemma. And this means I have Pinch 1, and I went backward from that to Plot Turn 1.

And that, my friends, means I've got the first half of Ben's part of this novel.

Which brings me back to "why should I go to writers' conferences?" Because "do what works for you" is a Thing, and if something that used to work for you suddenly isn't, more eyeballs on your problem, along with some outside input, may help you fix it. Her actual advice did not fix my problem, but it led me to a solution that worked.

Which means I'm no longer stalled on this damned outline. \o/

Sat, Sep. 24th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

  • Fri, 13:37: ...self, no. Do not send your civet coffee story to a magazine that is vegan-friendly. That story is the opposite of "vegan." #headdesk

Fri, Sep. 23rd, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

Fri, Sep. 23rd, 2016, 08:51 am
Here's a peek behind my curtain.

I realize that no news is, at least, not bad news, but at this point in the month I usually have around twenty new subs made. This month? Four. WHY IS MY INBOX EMPTY. (That is not a question; it is a cry to the Heavens.)

No, seriously, I have twenty-eight stories out right now, which is about normal for me because I have an embarrassment of riches. Eight of them are in the black on the Submission Grinder, while twenty of them are either orange or red (which means they're past the time of either "average" response, or the response time they say they'll give you). At least one is still black because there's no data yet--I'm the only submission, or they haven't gotten back to anyone because they're a new publication.

Six of them are being held for further consideration, that they've told me, and one of those is all but sold. I'm thinking a couple of others are being held as well, but they haven't let me know. There's a few I know I should query on, and I will on Sunday after this conference.

Just. Augh.

*shakes the tree HARD before toddling off to the League of Utah Writers Fall Conference*

Thu, Sep. 22nd, 2016, 01:27 pm
My tweets

Mon, Sep. 19th, 2016, 12:00 pm
My tweets

  • Sun, 15:16: And that's my whole Mile Hi Con trip booked and arranged, & most of my admin crap done. One more chore, then I can write.
  • Sun, 15:55: Dear places that want me to fill out your surveys: What's in it for me? Toss me a reward point or something for doing it, eh? #busyperson
  • Sun, 16:13: Man, I'd forgotten how dead easy it is to scan with my new and shiny all-in-one printer. And that's all my admin crap for the day DONE.
  • Sun, 17:33: Oh, hey, I broke my one-star-review cherry today. Bound to happen sooner or later...

Fri, Sep. 16th, 2016, 03:01 pm
My tweets

  • Thu, 16:40: I should not look up "Oaxacan Wood Carving" on eBay and sort by most expensive first. I can go to conventions, or I can buy these. Not both.
  • Fri, 10:11: Dear @Microsoft: Your automatic updates are of the devil, especially if my computer is asleep overnight when they happen. Cut that out.
  • Fri, 12:40: Guinea pig tourism resulted in us seeing this little beauty the other day: https://t.co/HOkGipoWDw

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