Superhero Sequel, Kickstarter, & Visual Aids

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I quick buffet of flying updates.

Tonight I (finally!) completed the first 12 chapters of the sequel to Hungry Gods, which will be entitled Deus Ex Machina.  HG was my 2015 “rookie superhero infiltrates zombieville” novel.  It was also a successful Kickstarter project.  DXM is returning hero Spitball on a new James Bond-style mission with lots of spandex-inspired fun.

After 2.5 years, I’m finally almost ready to launch book 2.  I actually started writing it at least a year ago, more like 1.5-2 years ago.  But I lost interest and wanted to work on a bunch of shorter stuff, so that’s what I did.  Now I’ve found renewed fun in it and am pushing forward.  (And fighting the urge to set it aside once again to write far-flung space pirate adventures.  Those might come after this, then…)

So now that I’ve hit this milestone (section one—first 12 chapters—completed, which is probably about 40% of the book), I’ll soon be launching another Kickstarter to help fund the editing and cover art.  (Meanwhile, I’ll be floating the above to represent this book.)

I’ve also been working on my visual aids/organizations for my existing books/series/universes.  Below is the Identity Crisis superhero universe thus far.  (I actually have several more books for the IDCU in mind—as well as a zillion not in this vein—but I’m an active duty military member with a family so…  it’ll take me a while to get them all written up.  But hopefully not another 2-3 years between books!)

So this is meant to show the books in series, as well as show standalone stories that are also inside other books.  For example, Medicine Man and Puppet Theatre exist as standalone stories, but you can get them inside Masks too.  Is that obvious?

Also, Silk Spider is a standalone story and not part of the 2029 series (of which Invasion is currently the only book).  Is that clear or do they seem to be lumped together?

Maybe if I get rid of the series headers (in red/pink) and just let the cover design and title description bit show they are in series?  What do you think?

Feedback is appreciated!

Okay, it’s after 4am here right now so I need to get to bed!  (On night shifts now, so my internal clock is all messed up.  And if the language here sounds goofy, that’s why!)  Good night!

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Inspiration Everywhere & Visual Library

Kind of a chaotic garble of quick ideas today, plus a visual aid.

One being the idea that inspiration is everywhere.  I have found myself lately trying to take seemingly random words or phrases and turning them into stories, or at least story titles.  I was cooking the other day and thought “Garlic Press” would be suitably challenging, and then came up with an idea to fit my space pirate and his wild tales.  I’ve written two stories for him so far and have found that while writing them, I grab the strangest stuff I can and force it to fit into the story somehow.  It’s fun as hell and makes for very interesting and unpredictable stuff.  Today I also thought “Flying the Chicken Coop” and “Gladiators of Python” would get worked into his next adventures.  (That second one about Python is kind of cheating because that’s already the name of the place they’ll be.)

Reading The Gunslinger also reminded me of a couple of steampunk western/weird western stories I’ve had in mind for a long time.  Would really like to write those up to.

I just wish I had more time to make use of all these flashes of brain lightning!  If only I were a full time writer.  I could churn out all kinds of cool and crazy stuff!  Supposedly some people actually create for a living–like, that’s their only job!  Can you imagine??!!  How do you get into such a position?  Who pays the bills?  Who feeds the family?

I honestly can’t imagine such a faerie dream land.

I’ve also been inspired to create visual outlines for all my books, universes, and series.  I’m a very visual person and want my blog and covers to embrace that.  (You may have noticed the format of the blog changed again.  What do you think?)  I’ve got the first outline here; a work in progress.  The outline framework–the white lines–are imperfect here because i had to use a sub-par program to add them after being unable to figure out a line drawing function on Photoshop.  (I’ll get the wife to help me later.)

The plan is to do this will all my universes/series.  So potential readers can see at a glance what is going on, see which books and stories might be included in bigger books, and get a feel of the story through the cover art.  And hopefully get excited to dig in!

Comments, criticism, and concerns welcome!  (Thanks!)

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The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger

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I saw the tall, slim book on the store shelf with a cool new cover very similar to this movie banner, and decided to pick it up.  (Can’t seem to find an image of the book cover via the Google Oracle though.)  This is the only Dark Tower book I’ve ever read and I wonder when I’m done with it again if I’ll feel compelled to go for the gold and try to read them all.  (Though such a quest would probably take me two years to complete, maybe more!)

The first time I read it, I remember substitute teaching and reading it during my off-period.  I feel like that might have been in Colorado Springs, though it could have been Santa Fe, New Mexico too.  (Funny how the mind works, flashing me back to certain times and places with certain stimuli.)

I don’t have high hopes for the movie, especially given the huge scope of the books.  Movies tend to jack stuff up, especially trying to cram everything into a 2 hour format.  (Or, trying to drag it out to be unnaturally long.  Case in point: The Hobbit, which was basically a short kids’ book, thrown on the rack and stretched to be 9 friggin’ hours long.  I still haven’t watched those movies and don’t plan to.  The very idea is too ridiculous and money-grubby for me.)

I’m also working to read three other books, which are all basically short stories.  I’ll showcase those soon too.  The nice thing about those is you can dip and in out as you please.

A quick quote—slightly abridged—from early in The Gunslinger that I liked.  (I don’t think Mr. King will begrudge me sharing this little snippet):

 

“Do you still believe in an afterlife?” the gunslinger asked him.

Brown nodded.  “I think this is it.”

And here’s another cool cover from ages past that I liked.

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Heroic Tales of Fantasy EBook Bundle for Super Cheap!

Someone over at BundleRabbit made this nifty ad for the HEROIC TALES bundle, featuring my book front and center, The Quest, which is part one of my epic Tarnish super-novel.  (Okay, that title’s lame, but it was always part one of the greater story so… [shrug])

Only issue I may have now is that the nifty ad doo-hickey is written in cyber code, and I’m a cyber moron, so… Let me see if I can figure out how to make this work…


Heroic Tales

Hey, I did it!

Boy, having them all packaged up that way really gives a feel for the scope of it all, doesn’t it?  Looks great!

In the bundle, by the way, you get 19 novels, novellas, and stories for the price of a venti fancy coffee. Can’t complain about that, right?!!

Check it out by clicking the image!

(And just in case that doesn’t work, try here for Amazon.)

New Superhero Ebook: Young Adults, Native Americans, Kick-Ass Cover

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Some of you may have seen my previous cover art tinkerings for this story via my Patreon page or Conspiracy Newsletter.

They were not very impressive.  Oh, I had the right idea, just not the visual talents to pull it off.  My wife keeps asking to help with my covers and I generally say, “Yeah, that’d be great, but I want it done sometime this year…” and then muddle my way through it while she browses the gossip on Facebook.  She finally got tired of hearing that and proved me wrong, resulting in the super-cool cover you see here!

Here’s the description of Medicine Man:

Is the Raven a trickster or a hero?

The Coyote is dead.  And her partner, Medicine Man, is on a rampage through the underworld.  Now is a good time for villains in Mesa City to keep their heads down.

Nakai and Nizoni Proudtree are Navajo kids growing up on the wrong side of the tracks.  In Shadowtown, it’s not cool to root for superheroes.  Even so, stealing the high-tech car of a vengeful crusader on the warpath is probably not a good idea…

But sometimes good kids do what they have to to survive.  And sometimes the healing magic we need most comes from unexpected places.

This young adult fantasy adventure earned an Honorable Mention in the international Writers of the Future Contest.  It also appears within the pages of the costumed mini-collection Masks and is a tale of the Identity Crisis Universe.

 This one is only available in ebook and is already up on Amazon, B&N, iBooks, Kobo, Smashwords, and more of your favorite retailers.

Awesome Book Bundles for Fantasy and Crime Fiction

I currently have books in two different book bundles.

What’s a “book bundle”???

It’s when a bunch of ebooks with a common thread, theme, or genre all get tied together and sold for one ridiculously low price.  Both of these bundles originate on BundleRabbit.com but can also be found at your favorite ebook retailers.

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CRIMES, CAPERS, & RULE-BREAKERS

Sometimes, you gotta be bad.

Steal away with this bundle of thieves and miscreants and join them on their criminal adventures! From burglars to assassins, grifters to con artists, these are mysteries from the other side, from the criminal point-of-view.

Break some rules and snag the Crimes, Capers, & Rule-Breakers Bundle today!

Pay a minimum of $0.99 USD and receive all 20 ebooks. This option is also available at KoboAmazoniBooks, and Barnes & Noble.

 

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HEROIC TALES

Imagine: you are seated about a blazing campfire, you and the other bards.  Tales of Achilles, Beowulf, Alexander, Odysseus, Conan, Tarzan, Joan of Arc and other heroes are told, along with new ones that carry on with the Jungian archetypes so central to our very nature.  Men and women who brave the unnatural, the fantastic, and the plain weird.

Without the circle of firelight, shapes of menace and strangeness stalk horrifically, but the heroic tales hearten us, and strengthen the entire tribe in both body and spirit to continue the battle of good and right, against the strange and evil.  We all have the need, deep within us, for Heroic Tales!

Pay a minimum of $4.99 USD and receive all 19 ebooks. This option is also available at KoboAmazoniBooks, and Barnes & Noble.

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You get a crap ton of reading for a super cheap!  But only for  a limited time, so hurry!

Last Chance: Final 2 Days for Super Ebook Giveaway and Sequel Pre-Order

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We’re in the final few days for the Masks giveaway and Secret Identities pre-order period!

In honor of my newest release, Secret Identities (Secret Origins: Book 2), I’m giving away TEN e-copies of Masks (SO: Book 1).  

If you’ve already read or purchased Masks, you might want to skip to pre-ordering SIDs (as I affectionately call it).  If you’ve read neither but would like to give them a try, now’s your chance!

You can find the giveaway by clicking here.  This runs until July 14th, at which time ten winners will be randomly chosen by Amazon and notified of what to do next by email.  All you have to do to enter is click a button to follow me on Amazon (easy peasy).  All that means is you’ll get emails from them when I release something new.  That’s it!

Then go right over and pre-order your e-copy of Secret Identities.  Doing so will ensure your ebook is delivered on release day, which is (you guessed it) July 14th.  (It also helps me out, as all pre-orders ping the cyber-machinations on the same day, which boosts its popularity stats and helps get the word out.)  It’s up on Amazon,  B&N,  iBooks, Kobo, and 24 Symbols.

And I have a whole bunch of other stuff happening.  Stay tuned for the great book bundle deals I have up right now too!