Guest Post – Dave Alderman

Work emergencies hindered me from getting this up sooner. Apologies.

The Distractions of Christian Fiction

Some days it feels like this world is going to hell in a handbasket. I turn on the news or I fire up my Facebook feed and I marvel at all of the ridiculous issues people are making a stink about. Everyone seems to be offended about something or someone somewhere. We’ve entered an age of entitlement issues and quick tempers. Passion has become misdirected. Instead of fighting against human trafficking, government corruption, or an increasing number of homeless filling our streets, we’re advertising, sharing, and making a huge deal about Bruce Jenner’s decision to become a woman.

Really, people?

Why is it this generation seems to have an easier time shying away from the issues that matter and instead cloister around nonsensical topics that allow them to turn away from the blood and violence and sexual slavery and instead fight amongst non-believers of their cause on social platforms?

This is one reason I have a hard time engaging in conversations with people on Facebook or Twitter. I can’t find a lot of worthy topics to latch on to. My passion is better spent writing.

If you read through the Bible – yes, I mean both Old and New Testament – you’ll see that God constantly uses believers to enact change in the world. We are His instruments, tasked with bringing Christ and His message of salvation to a broken world. Instead, we’re detracted by engaging in issues that don’t really matter.

We’re distracted, which I’ve realized is the Enemy’s number one weapon against Christians. In any great war, if you’ve succeeded in distracting the enemy, then you can pretty much take complete advantage of your opposition and secure victory.

I think the same goes for Christian writers as well. Instead of engaging issues from a Christian worldview, we’ve written clean-cut alternatives to the secular content monopolizing bookstore shelves. We’ve become distracted by a misinterpretation of the ‘who’ Christian fiction is written for.

I see a ton of Christian novels (fiction, science fiction, fantasy) that only seem to exist to see how many times the word ‘Christ’, ‘redemption’, and ‘forgiveness’, can appear in a novel. These stories cater to Christians and in many ways ostracizes non-Christians to the point where nobody but Christians want to read Christian fiction. Many of these stories are not realistic, nor are the outcomes. Not always.

Christians are shying away from writing about the real-world to instead offer up a wholesome, purified, easy depiction of the Christian life.

Too bad the Christian life isn’t easy. It’s full of heartache, it’s full of sacrifice, and it’s full of pain. A lot of it. It’s the kind of life that Christ shines the best through because He is our Healer, our Deliverer, our Savior. People who are not in trouble do not need a savior, nor do they need a deliverer, nor do they need a healer.

This is why I write what I write. I write Christian fiction but with real-world content. Drug dealers, megalomaniacs, sorcery, betrayal, sacrifice and ruin fill the pages of my fiction. And in the midst of it is Christ, coming to save a broken individual, a broken world.

Official Banner

It’s not enough to just write about this type of fiction. I want to publish it. That’s why I’ve created The Crossover Alliance, an online publishing company interested in pushing edgy Christian speculative fiction out into the world. Stories that the real-world can relate to. Stories of heartache and sacrifice and pain. Stories of healing, deliverance and rescue.

I have an Indiegogo campaign running right now to help raise funds for the first year’s expenses. Please head to the link – http://www.igg.me/at/TCA – to meet the team, read about the mission, and pledge to snag awesome digital subscriptions to our first year’s catalog.

My goal isn’t to prove that there is no need at all for tame Christian fiction, but that there is a serious need for Christian fiction that strives to resonate more with Christians and non-Christians alike.

IMG_0101David N. Alderman is an indie author of two speculative fiction series—Black Earth and Expired Reality. You can find all of David’s work at http://www.davidnalderman.com. He is also the founder of The Crossover Alliance (http://www.thecrossoveralliance.com), a publishing company specializing in edgy Christian speculative fiction. He participates in National Novel Writing Month (http://www.nanowrimo.org) each year. When he’s not writing or spending time with family, you can find David gaming on any number of different consoles.

Free Story Time

Cover2For any interested parties, my short story SOZO is free ’til the end of the month.

Fair Warning: a quick read, it has mature themes and deals with a demobbed combat vet who finds himself in an ugly situation. Ending is good though.

On a related note, I’ve been told it has been accepted into the next Crossover Alliance anthology, due late this year. So that’s cool.

Thanks much and have a great day.

And then there were Nine

Days left for the Celtic Stained Glass Giveaway.

Foil-wrap construction, the panel measures 20.25" x 20.25"
Foil-wrap construction, the panel measures 20.25″ x 20.25″

To Enter, simply leave a review of The Barrow Lover at Amazon.com before 30 April and you will be eligible to win one of three Celtic-theme stained glass panels. No sock puppets please. One entry per review.

On May 1, I will draw three names from the list of reviewers and post them here at the blog. Winners then have seven days to contact me with their mailing specifics. Failure to do so by 7 May will result in their entry being void and another name selected for the prize.

Any questions? Ask.

Thanks,
patrick t.

TheBarrowLover 2 eyes

Under Strange Stars – out the door.

UNDER_STRANGE_STARS_final_rgb_flatten_6x9inchesThe next installment of The Clar1ty Wars is now available at Amazon for Kindle and other flavors of e reader.

UNDER STRANGE STARS picks up where One Bad Apple left off: Seeb in hiding, detectives Lynch and Sarin chasing a trail of bodies that is only growing longer, a series of vicious terrorist attacks suddenly leaves Drop City reeling.

Both the Corporations and the Du-li independence movement maneuver in the shadows, forging deadly alliances in the fight not merely for supremacy, but the future of the entire Kepler22 system.

Pick up your copy now.

Thanks,

Patrick T.

SOZO free this weekend

Sozo (Original Cover)“A powerful and startling short story…”

Finishing up “Under Strange Stars” but wanted to let folks know my short piece ‘Sozo’ will be FREE at Amazon this weekend. So it’s yours for nothing if you want it.

Thanks.

ps – speaking of Amazon, I had to buy replacement keyboard stick-on letters for my computer, I’ve worn down so many keys.

That’s a good problem, right?

Shift Complete + Free Excerpts

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The shift to Shift Tense is complete: all three novellas are now compiled in a single volume. Thanks to everyone for their support and encouragement.

Apologies to you print book lovers; at present, my status as a writer combined with the reader demographic for spec-fiction doesn’t make it worth the extra ISBN, effort, and cost to do POD. If anything, it gives you late-adopters another reason to buy an IPad or Kindle.

Speaking of which…part one of both Running Black and Shift Tense are available in PDF here on the site. Scroll down past the Amazon links on the right sidebar, then click on the Incursion and/or Red Flags covers. Free stuff to give you a taste of the novels and my take on Biblical perspective spec-fiction. (notice I didn’t use the phrase ‘Christian fiction’) Hope you enjoy.

Next up: Clar1ty Wars, book 2: Under Strange Stars

A shift in Shift Tense

SHIFT_TENSE_final_rgb_flatten_6x9inches_with_bleeds Important Notice to all Eshu International readers.

I have decided to compile the three previously published Shift Tense novellas – Red Flags, Soldier Dreams, and Angels – into a single volume. The serialization strategy did not work as intended and I believe a single novel will serve everyone better in the long run. I apologize for any hassle, misunderstanding, or bad feelings. It was never my intention to inconvenience or mislead anyone.

By way of compensation to anyone who has purchased one or two of the novellas, I am offering all three for free for the next five days, from Feb 12th through the 16th at Amazon. After February 17th however, Shift Tense will only be available in the single volume.

Thank you for your understanding and support.

Best,

Patrick T.

 

 

Here are the links:

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RED FLAGS

 

 

 

 

 

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SOLDIER DREAMS

 

 

 

 

 

Cover for final installment of Shift Tense.
Cover for final installment of Shift Tense.

 

ANGELS

No free rides on the Amazon?

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Trying to offer the first portions of the Eshu International novels Running Black and Shift Tense for Free at Amazon. (The Shift Tense serialization doesn’t work as intended, so Red Flags, Soldier Dreams and Angels would be unpublished, then rolled into one complete volume.)

However, I can’t work around KDP’s minimum .99 pricing.  It seems Amazon no longer lets you offer books at no cost. (why should they, I guess)

So should I…

1. Price them at .99, then use the Amazon Free Book Promotion as often as possible?

2. Leave everything as is.

3. Bin the Free Excerpt idea. Just release Shift Tense as a complete novel and move on.

Any thoughts or experiences on this? Thanks.

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By the way, Under Strange Stars is still on schedule for late March.

CLAR1TY WARS 2
CLAR1TY WARS 2

Wrestling with the GARQ

The Great Amazon Review Quandary, that is

There are three facets to my confusion, a sort of Trinity of Interconnected Perplexities: the need to Market, blatant Review Inflation, and a reluctance to come off as ‘that guy’.

Of course I want to get my work in front of potential readers, but I’m just one special snowflake in a huge flipping blizzard, and I simply don’t have to the funds to hire a PR firm, or the time and inclination to incessantly pump the Social Media well.

Then, between sock puppets, paid-for-reviews, and shill-and-gush marketing, Amazon review numbers may have gone through the roof but their credibility has plummeted. I mean, how does John/Jane Doe’s 50 Shades of Western Zombie Romance Vampire Apocalypse get twice, thrice the reviews of masters like Gibson, King, Rothfuss, Tolkien, Peake, Cronin, et alia? It don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that (authentic) swing.

(Side Note: I worry for western civilization when I hear people are cashing in on Dino Porn It’s rumored those two ladies paid their way through college with their writing. Good for them, I guess, but big ‘WTF?’.)

As an Indie author I get that marketing is in my hands, but the last thing I want is to be the turd in the pool in every room, chat, forum, thread, FB/Tumblr/Pintrest/Twitter feed always pimping my books.

MybookMybookDiscountcodeLatestfivestarreviewMybookMynextbookIdeaforbookseriesMybookMybook…

Not everyone is interested in genre fiction. Buying or reading one of my books doesn’t then obligate the reader to be my Publicity Squirrel. I want to contribute to any community I’m a part of, be it physical or online, not just take. Sure, I ask folks to read and review my stuff, but it’s rude to presume or guilt them. I figure what I really need to do is write things worth reviewing.

So there it is. I’m open to feed back, recommendations and suggestions.

P.S. Book Announcement coming tomorrow.

Take Care,
Patrick T.