Audiobooks and the magic of story telling

I’m told all the Cool Kids are into Audiobooks these days, so I’m taking my first steps in that direction. I’m happy to announce the short stories ‘Sozo’ and  “A Prayer to Saint Strelok’ are now available at Amazon’s Audible and iTunes/Books. The first is a straight-razor of a story about a combat vet returning to a broken, near-future America. Remarkably, it was included in The Crossover Alliance’s 2nd annual anthology in  2015.  (I note that of the three TCA anthologies, that year is the only one without a single review. “Coincidence?… Read More

Making it easy on Beta Readers

I’ve always understood ‘Beta Readers’ to be those long suffering friends and family of writers who are willing – after putting up with the author while they were writing the novel – to then read it, in its entirety, for internal consistency.  They’re not copy editors or grammar nazis scrutinizing for typos and errant semicolons. No, they’re weighing the substance of the story. Plot flow, character motivations and story logic. They might trip over the occasional repeated phrase, but did it work? Allowing for conventions of genre and personal taste, is this… Read More

Thoughts on ‘art’ as ‘ministry’

When churched people learn I’m a stained glass artisan who also writes fiction, after they recover from the initial surprise, they often spin my vocation as some form of ministry. (After all, it’s artistic, not practical. Not ‘real’ work, eh) So my windows must be for churches and my stories about Jesus or theology. Or maybe the End Times – that’s OK too. If I have the time and enough of a relationship with the individual, I try to explain my “Christian” testimony in these contexts actually consists of me treating my… Read More

Writing in a time of funk and strange.

Writing-wise, 2017 was lackluster – to use a generous term. Twelve months on, I have one short story released at the last minute, birthed in a spasm of inspiration, and two larger projects stalled 20% from the finish line. So yeah. Not so hot. Why? (that perennial question) Between real life, studio work, a persistent, low-grade funk, a national pandemic of strangeness and acrimony,  I confess it was a battle to sit down and slog through. Like pulling teeth. Now none of those are valid excuses – I’m responsible to do the… Read More

Three Quick Thoughts on Writing

It’s work. No getting around this. I get flowing with inspiration but most of the time you’ve got to take a deep breath, dive in and trust inspiration to follow. Writing begets writing. Anything worth doing is worth the time and effort to do well. Step back. Take a breather, fine. But don’t give up. Keep your butt in the chair. The field is overwhelmingly crowded. It’s up to what, a million books published per year in the US now? 2/3rds of those are indie/self published. So 8,760 hours in a year, that’s… Read More

Semper Gumby

More ‘graphs from my latest mil sf WIP, ZOMBIE SIX.   SEMPER GUMBY     Rucker and I watched Tien Chang burn. Not like we hadn’t seen the effects of an orbital strike before. But there’s just something about fire. We were across the river, five kilometers away, and could still hear it roar. Buildings were torches. Signs, light posts, cars, flared like kindling. Downtown was a shimmering inferno of melting asphalt, glass, and steel. It is hard to believe those things burn like that. But they do. A city of a… Read More

Shattered World’s excerpt

Eresh’s Chimney looked like a mud castle made by a giant. A mish-mash of crude bricks, rough boulders, and hewn beams the thickness of tree trunks, the spire gnarled its way skyward, knobby, crooked, and enormous. There was a single entrance at the ground level, two massive doors of stone. They were  the color of storm clouds and seemed to take forever to open. The sun had started its drop toward the western edge of the horizon when Levi, Gibs and Addas watched Snat delicately unwrap a leather bundle of long wire… Read More

Beneath The Broken Moon

  Finished edits on part one of The Shattered Worlds and decided to play around in GIMP.  I like the way this turned out. I think people are going to enjoy this story. Someone asked about ‘Dead Saints’ the other day. Well, it’s on the back burner until the election is over. It’s been a stop and go project from the beginning, with the first scenes and outline sitting on my computer for several years. The current delay is due in part by my malaise and general frustration as well as an… Read More

Free September Stories

Work has slowed down to where I can revise the first major section of my next novel, Shattered Worlds. So no computer games for me this month, eh? To thank you for your support and encouragement, all three of my Near-Future shorts are available for free at Amazon for five days beginning tomorrow Sept 9. Download them, tell a friend, pass the info on. They’re short, easy reads. I hope you find your time well spent. Click on the covers below. Have an excellent day.

The Stones Remember Release

Another ‘Near-Future’ short, The Stones Remember is about NATO units caught up in a massive Russian invasion of Poland and the Baltics. Exhausted, out-gunned, and out numbered, they find themselves at the site of an old battlefield and have to decide if some history is worth repeating. Available in electronic format right now, it’s a quick, cheap read. (less than a cup of coffee lasts longer) Thanks much. I’m hammering away at two full-length novel projects but wanted to get this out in the meantime. Hope you enjoy it.