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  November 15, 2014

Here's another wildly imaginative tale that I got an early glimpse of: Mike Duran's The Ghost Box.

This is the first book I've read that billed itself as an urban fantasy. It takes place in what appears to be a modern city, inhabited by normal people, but through scientific and supernatural means...bad things are about to happen.

Which mean, of course, we'll need an everyman hero to save the day. Think Warehouse 13 and X-files and you'll have a good idea what the story is like. Here's a portion of my blurb:

I recommend you check it out. You'll be glad you did.

 
 
November 1, 2014

Over the last few months, I've had the privilege of reading some astounding novels written by my author friends, prior to their release. Two of them, Blood for Blood by Ben Wolf, The Legend of the Winterking: The Crown of Nandur by Kent Holloway, are now available to purchase or preorder.

Though they have diverse characters and themes, both novels are wonderful reads and serve as excellent examples of why the Christian speculative fiction genre exists. Blood for Blood wrestles with the question of whether vampires can be saved, while Winterking creates an epic fantasy backstory for Kris Kringle. Here’s a glimpse of their covers along with what I said about them.

(Click on the images or the links above to buy.)

 

"Author Ben Wolf has a real winner in Blood for Blood. Solid writing, believable characters, fluid pacing, and a premise that exemplifies Christian speculative fiction: Could a vampire be saved? I loved the boldness, the nonstop tension, and the well-timed twists. I highly recommend this book."

"I love it when an author sets for himself a seemingly impossible goal and manages to nail it. Legend of the Winterking is such a book. Here Mr. Holloway has taken the legend of Kris Kringle and crafted a full-blown epic fantasy. I'm both amazed and delighted!"

 
 
 June 1, 2014

The last weekend in May the Realm Makers conference was held at the Villanova campus near Philidelphia, PA.  The last writers event I attended was over ten years ago, before FoxTales was published. Realm Makers is exclusively for readers and writers of Christian speculative fiction and so seemed the perfect opportunity to dip my toe into a writing event again.

So how did it go?

The conference started out with a bang, as I got to help my new friend Susan Lower change a tire on her van Thursday night...

Former Marcher Lord Press owner and friend Jeff Gerke was there, as was new owner Steve Laube. (Their pictures are below. I'll let you guess which is which...)

NYT bestselling author, Tosca Lee gave both the opening and closing talks and was a real pleasure to meet and dialog with. She also was well aware of AViS and provided me with a great quote "I wish I'd written that book."

Friday night was the awards banquet. It had many, many memoriable events. First off, were the costumes...

Lots of variety, and it was clearly a uniting event, since representatives of both the Star Trek and Star Wars universes were in attendence.

One of the hosts, and Splickety Magazine's Executive Editor had a little infestation problem, while I practiced being a conehead zombie from the game Plants vs Zombies. (Yep, I made the mask. My first attempt at cloth mache.)

Another highlight of the banquent was the inclusion of AViS's cover in the Parable cover art contest. It came in second! (Kudos to Kirk DouPonce of DogEared Design!)

There was lots of love for AViS overall. Every copy of the book I brought sold, and it was mentioned on multiple occasions. Here's me with previous Facebook-only friend Randy Streu, and new friend Rebecca Bergren.

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Most fulfilling, though, were the opportunities to interact with other speculative fiction fan and friends. Here's me with longtime friend and Splashdown publisher Grace Bridges (left), and authors and friends Kat Heckenbach and Travis Perry.

So, Realm Makers was an altogether great experience for me. Look forward to doing it again. (Here's some parting shots of the campus...)

 
 
May 1, 2014

In March, Annette Mastron of Southern Writer's Magazine invited me to write an article about the AViS rollercoaster for the magazine's blog. She liked the article I turned in enough that she recommended it be placed in their print magazine, and the other editors agreed!

So, my first article in a print magazine went live today. If you head on over to http://www.southernwritersmagazine.com/ you can get yourself a copy in either print or digital format.

Also, Annette asked me to write a separate but complimentary article for the blog. That will be coming later this month. So stay tuned!

 
 
March 19, 2014

A few days ago, best-selling and award-winning author, Brandilyn Collins, asked me if she could feature the saga of Amish Vampires of Space on her blog. It took little time at all to say "Yes!" and I'm really happy with the result.

Her post was soon picked up by the popular The Passive Voice website. To see her post, go here. And to see The Passive Voice post, go here.

 
 
March 12, 2014

Been a crazy couple months, and the craziness continues. Last night on The Tonight Show, Jimmy Fallon featured Amish Vampires in Space. Sure, it was on his "Do Not Read" list, but there is something really satisfying about seeing this...

...especially after all the twists and turns this book (and this author) has seen over the last few months. Thanks God, for keeping it interesting.

And thanks Jimmy! To see the actual clip, go here .

 
 
January 2, 2014

As visitors to my site may have heard by now, my publisher—Marcher Lord Press—has been sold, and the new owner has elected not to include Amish Vampires in Space as part of the new company’s catalog.

Obviously, that result would not have been my first preference, as I worked really hard on AViS, felt it was a quality story (and reviews seem to confirm that feeling), and think it would be an asset to any company deemed “the premier publisher of Christian speculative fiction.”

That said, I certainly wouldn’t want one of my literary children in a place where it wasn’t wanted.

Ten years ago, such a change would’ve resulted in a book being orphaned. Left watching through a restaurant’s window on a cold winter’s day while those inside laughed and danced and feasted...

Today, though, things are different. Anyone is free to walk into that restaurant. Anyone can laugh. Anyone can dance.

To that end, I created my own imprint “Freeheads” and Amish Vampires in Space is its very first title. It is my intent that there be little-to-no time where AViS is found unavailable to the general public. At this point the eBooks are essentially ready to be set loose and the print book is nearing its final proofing stage.

So, please continue to review and blog about all my books. The new Marcher Lord owner has not only assured me that the MLP version of AViS will stay available until I’m ready, but that all the interim profits to that book will come my way. (Which I think is only fair.) Personally, I wish both Jeff Gerke (the prior owner) and Steve Laube (the new owner) all the best in their new endeavors.

And vampires are very difficult to kill...

Thanks for your support!

Kerry Nietz

** I'd like to add a few factual notes here, just for the record **

  •  I (and others, prior MLP owner included) argued vigorously for the quality of AViS and for it to remain in the lineup. During that process, I watched the buzz about AViS continue, and the print ranking enter the top 1% percent of books on Amazon. Yet the answer from the new owner remained a resounding "no". I soon began to feel like Moses arguing with Pharaoh, except in reverse. ("Let my people STAY!") When I reached that point, I began to think, "Okay, maybe this is God's doing, and I need to move on and let the blessings fall where they may." So, the exclusion of AViS is a sad thing, it has made for weeks of stress and discomfort, but possibly it is a good thing too. I remain open to that.

  • By Marcher Lord standards, AViS was (and continues to be) an unmitigated success. As of this writing, the print book totals on Amazon alone equal a quarter of my print sales on Amazon over the last two-plus years.

  • In addition, the facts strongly indicate that it did nothing but raise awareness for the company. Over the last three months Alexa.com was showing that the rank of both the Marcher Lord site, and my site had lowered (gotten more popular) by millions worldwide. The searched for phrase that brought people to both sites: Amish Vampires in Space. Not to mention the widespread press (Washington Post, Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, etc.) the book received. For more on that, go here.

  • As of now, Marcher Lord Press still retains rights to my other books. I bear no ill will toward the new ownership. I do, however, feel some regret that they didn't read my book before making a decision. :)

 
 
October 15, 2013

Today I received news that Mask is a finalist in the EPIC eBook Awards Competition in the Science Fiction category. It truly is a honor, and for those keeping score, this means that all four of my novels published prior to July of this year have been finalist for this award.

Freeheads won last year's award.

The EPIC Award Competition is the premier contest in the eBook and ePublishing world and was created to recognize excellence in eBooks of all genres. The winners will be announced in March of 2014 at Epicon in San Antonio, Texas.

 
 
October 1, 2013

This month is the anniversary of a couple important events in my writing career.

To start with, my publisher, Marcher Lord Press turns five this month. On October 1st, 2008, the company released its first three novels: Summa Elvetica by Vox Day (Theodore Beale), Hero, Second Class by Mitchell Bonds and The Personifid Invasion by R.E. Bartlett.

And I was one of the early customers. I rushed to buy copies of all three books. It was exciting to see the creation of a company that specilized in the kind of fiction I not only liked to read, but to write. I didn't realize it at the time, but the novel I had just finished writing, A Star Curiously Singing (which I'd entitled 2000 AP) would the folowing October join the ranks of Marcher Lord novels. Since then, the company has gone on to release dozens of novels and win numerous awards, to which ASCS and its sequels have been some of the recipients.

But October also marks another special time for me, as it was October of 2003 when I first became a published author, with the release of FoxTales. Hard to believe it has been that long, but I've been busy. With the release of Amish Vampires in Space, there will be six books in print with my name on them, along with a short story and a collaborative fantasy tale. The total word count is over 560,000 words. That's 56,000 words a year!

It has been a fun and inspiration time. A real eventful time. A decade of growth.

I hope for many more.

 

 
 
September 1, 2013

Today I found out that Freeheads is a Readers Favorite Bronze Medal award winner. It also earned a 5-star review from them, which is a separate award.

I feel really honored by the recognition. If you remember, I inadvertently entered Freeheads in the generic sci-fi category this year, so it is neat that judges that probably weren't expecting any sort of Christian message chose to recognize Freeheads this way.

Including the EPIC award earlier this year, this will be the second time Freeheads has scored well in a generic science fiction category.

 
 
August 28, 2013

Yesterday, cover artist extrordinaire, Kirk DouPonce of DogEared Design sent my publisher and I his take on what the cover for Amish Vampires in Space should look like.

My first reaction? I want to put that on a t-shirt!

He went on to share the image on Facebook, where it caused a minor firestorm.

So what choice did I have but to add to the firestorm? I shared the image on my author page there, and boy, was that fun! Lots of comments, lots of shares, and an amazingly large reach. It was also neat to see some of the things people were saying when they shared it...

"I do need to buy this"

"An Amish novel I would actually read..."

"Seriously...this is PURE genius."

"Just when you thought you'd seen everything..."

Good stuff! Now to get the words perfect and ready for the big day. Heeheehee... 

 
 
July 3, 2013

A couple days ago the Readers Favorite folks emailed me to tell me that the finalists for this year's contests had been selected. So of course, I rushed to their site and scanned the list of finalists to see if Freeheads would appear. In 2010, A Star Curiously Singing won the gold medal in the Christian Science Fiction category, and the following year, The Superlative Stream was a finalist in that same category, so I was hopeful that Freeheads would be a finalist as well.

Unfortunately, I didn't find it. So, I shrugged my shoulders and continued to scan (while also wondering if I'd actually entered correctly...I'd made that mistake before: Entered, but forgot to send the book).

When I got further down the list I realized that I had, in fact, made another mistake. But the results weren't bad at all.

Apprently, I had entered the book in the general science fiction category, because it is a finalist there! So, both "whoops" and "woot!"

The list of finalist is here, if you want to see for yourself. The winners are announced in September.

 
 
July 3, 2013

I'm always honored when authors ask me to read their books for a cover recommendation. There is always a bit of trepidation, however, too. The manuscripts you get are usually early drafts, and so are missing the final polishing. Also, it could be the case that you won't like the story, at all. Then you feel bad (if you're being honest) for having to turn the author (and their creation) down.

So when Kevin Thompson asked me to read his new thriller I had that usual bit of honor/trepidation conflict. Would I like it enough to recommend it?

Thankfully, I liked the book quite a bit. Supenseful, action-packed, good premise and characters--everything a thiller should have.

So, of course I gave it my recommendation, as you can see above.

If you're in the mood for a gripping thriller, check out 30 Days Hath Revenge.

 

June 28, 2013

It has been a busy year of writing. Aside from the Mask release in February and the reissue fo FoxTales in June, I've been working hard on another story, one that surprised me.

As many readers are aware, Amish fiction continues to be popular. Also popular, of course, is the vampire genre. So a couple of years ago, my publisher joked that the perfect speculative novel would be something like Amish Vampires in Space. He even made up a mock cover. This cover is a revised version of that:

Sometime later, he and I were chatting and I said (or probably wrote) that someone ought to write that novel. I didn't think it would be me, because Amish Vampires in Space screams "camp" and I wasn't sure I could write that. Or that others would appreciate it, if i did.

Then last summer, I found myself speculating on how such a novel might work. What would need to happen to produce such a scenario? How would these Amish folks become vampires? What would the conflicts be? And why would they be in space?

Things started to click. I started to write, and a month or two later I was at over 30,000 words. I mentioned my progress to my publisher and he encouraged me to continue. Now, ten months later, the finished manuscript stands at 127,000 words (...my largest one ever....) and I think it is works pretty well. It is a very character-driven story, with lots of fun science and exploration of deeper spiritual themes.

October 1st is the release date. The second draft is in the publisher's hands. Now we'll see what he says...but I feel pretty good about what I've done. I think it is close.

Who would've thought it? Amish Vampires in Space.

 
June 1, 2013

It has been nearly ten years since I first became a published author. FoxTales: Behind the Scenes at Fox Software started it all for me back in October of 2003.

The original version was adequate for what it was—a memoir from a first time writer. It presented the story I wanted to tell, and it garnered many positive reviews, especially from those who used FoxPro and were interested in what it was like to help create it.

I had little control over the formatting and presentation of the book, though. That was all in the hands of the publisher. I never saw anything until thousands of copies had been printed. Consequently, there were a number of niggles that if I ever got the chance to republish the book, I would want to make sure got addressed. First off, the cover...

This cover had some significance to the publisher, but it had little significance to the actual story. In case you're wondering, the metal object in the background is a "MegaFox." The publisher had another book out called "MegaFox" that presented tips on extending Visual FoxPro. The name was a riff on the movie MechaGodzilla, which features a metal version of Godzilla. (And yes, the pointing hand has six fingers. I don't know why.)

There were lots of things that could be done to improve the readability of the book, as well. The original version had a smaller font and the text wasn't justified like most modern books. Also, there were some fairly glaring errors. A title header that didn't end when it should was one example, but there were others.

So, a couple years ago the rights for FoxTales reverted to me. I immediately went to work on an eBook version and released that in 2010. Then the question was: What to do with the print version?

I briefly contemplated shopping it around to other publishers, but after talking to my current publisher, and another author friend, I realized that the current technology was such that I could produce the book myself if I wanted to.

I started to get excited about that idea. I already had a cover designer for the eBook, and he agreed to do a print version for me if I ever decided to go that route. So I headed down the road of being a print book publisher.

I reformatted the book in a larger more legible font. I also got one of the Fox Software developers (Dave Heindel) to write me a new Foreword, and wrote a new closing Author's Note myself. Then I realized that the layout left me with a handful of blank pages, and I had a folder full of Fox Software "souvenirs" that I could include there, and also augment the story.

So, after a couple months at it, I have something that I'm quite proud of: A Tenth Anniversary Edition of FoxTales. Here's some pictures:

The book is available at CreateSpace today, and will be available on Amazon within a week. I will also be posting an updated eBook version in the not-so-distant future. Hope you check it out! 

 
April 27, 2013

To celebrate the success the DarkTrench trilogy has had lately, on the 25th and 26th we ran a 99-cent sale on the eBook. What fun that was!

At its peak, ASCS reached the #1 spot in all of Christian Science Fiction and Fantasy, and #4 on the Technothrillers list.

In addition, my author rank found some rarified air, placing me between Douglas Adams and Michael Crichton on one list, and between Kevin Anderson and William Gibson on another.

Not to mention that it got the book into the hands of people who might otherwise never find it. Here's hoping they like what they read.

Fun stuff!

 
 
April 26, 2013

A new review of Freeheads just posted on the Readers' Favorite site, and there is no other way to describe it other than "glowing."

Even though Readers' Favorite also has a book award contest, getting a 5-star review from one of their reviewers is a separate (and sticker-worthy) honor.

I'm pleased that Anne Boling enjoyed Freeheads enough to give it 5-stars, and look forward to the results of the contest later this year.

To read the full review, go here.

 
 
April 4, 2013

Thanks to the hard work of Mary Agius there is now a curriculum guide available for A Star Curiously Singing.

The book features discussion questions for each chapter, along with fun stuff like word searches and a place where readers can draw their favorite bot. I think it is quite insightful and interesting, and I'm really grateful Mary took the time to make it a reality. (Guides for the other books are in the works!)

The guide is available from CreateSpace and Amazon. To purchase a copy, go here.

 

March 16, 2013

Thursday morning's mail delivery brought a special surprise. Unfortunately, I had to keep the award under my hat until it was announced at EPICon Saturday night (the 16th of March).

But now it can be told: Freeheads was selected by the judges to receive the EPIC 2013 eBook Award in the Science Fiction category.

I'm so excited and honored. The people of EPIC have been especially kind to the DarkTrench trilogy, as all three books were finalist in their contest. (The earlier two books were both finalists in 2011.)

Freeheads is the first winner, though, and I couldn't be happier. It is a finish that is truly EPIC!

 
February 1, 2013

After a month of intense activity, the print version of Mask is now available to order from the Marcher Lord Press site. Amazon and Barnes & Noble soon to follow. (Along with eBook versions!) Keep watching this site for updates!

 
 
November 23, 2012

Last weekend, my wife and I attended the Readers Favorite awards ceremony in Miami, Florida. There were nearly 200 authors and guests there, and I got to meet a good share of them. Everyone was really friendly and interesting to talk to.

One of the authors and speakers was Paul Michael Glazer, best known for his role as Detective David Starksy in Starksy and Hutch. He's the author of an intriguing young adult fantasy now, called Chrystallia...

Another incentive to travel to Miami was the Miami Book Fair. The Readers Favorite folks had a booth in the fair where they were showcasing our books. Here's a picture of ASCS...

The highligt of the event, of course, was the awards ceremony itself. ASCS won a gold medal in 2010 in Christian Sci-fi, and TSS was a finalist in 2011. Here I am with ASCS's gold medal and Readers Favorite founder, Debra Goyner.

And here's a picture of me with my loving and supportive wife. Kudos to her for putting up with a weekend of writers and writer talk. I think she enjoyed it, though.

We rarely have an oppotunity or incentive (with children typically gripping and/or wiping their hands on us) to dress up. So this was a welcome change of pace.

Well done, Readers Favorite!

 
 
November 15, 2012

So what am I up to now? Are there any more books in the works?

Short answer: Absolutely!

This summer I turned in a manuscript that is little less cyber and a little more action than the DarkTrench trilogy. In style, though, it is very similar. It has a cool new hero and an interesting yet familiar setting. And of course there is still lots of neat tech and, I hope, a relevant theme. Marcher Lord Press is now on a monthly release schedule, though, and is a busy place. All that to say, I haven't heard anything yet.

In the meantime, I'm working on another story that caught my fancy. It is a deep space epic and features a crazy fun premise. (At least, I hope.) I'm over 40,000 words in...so probably halfway. I can't wait for people to hear about it. Lots of fun.

Also, around Christmas time I expect to see my name on another cover.

All that to say, hang in there readers! I'm working on it.

 
 
October 27, 2012

Today I received news that, like the preceeding two books in the DarkTrench trilogy, Freeheads is a finalist in the EPIC eBook Awards Competition in the Science Fiction category. It truly is a honor to see all three books recognized this way.

The EPIC Award Competition is the premier contest in the eBook and ePublishing world and was created to recognize excellence in eBooks of all genres. Since Freeheads was published in both paper and electronic form, it was eligible for the contest.

 

The winners will be announced in March of 2013 at Epicon in Vancouver, Washington. I 've very happy and excited.

 
 
Septemer 1, 2012

Now on its thirteenth week, the Marcher Lord Press collaborative story project is nearing the climax.

Initially, this week was to be Jill Williamson's week (one of our award-winning fantasy authors), but since she was otherwise occupied getting a new book finalized, I volunteered to move up a week.

When I reached the 1,800 word mark—about where we typically end an episode—I realized there was no way I could easily hand it off to the next guy, Steve Rzasa. So, after a short discussion with him, I kept writing until I found a good stopping point...which was nearly 3,400 words.

Long story short, I'm posting for two weeks in a row. Then Steve will dive in to finish it all up. I think it has shaped up to be a fun little story.

To see what I just wrote, go here.

And check back next week too...and the next week for the finale! 

 
 
August 15, 2012

If you are a Kobo eReader user, then you'll be happy to know that all of my books are available for your favorite reading device. Just go to the Kobo site and search for my name. It is just that simple!

Happy reading!

 
 
July 24, 2012

Over the past couple months the authors at Marcher Lord Press have been involved in a collaborative fiction project over at the Marcher Lord Press site. Steve Rzasa started us off with a great introductory setup in Episode 1, and the plot, along with the characters' quest, has progressed steadily ever since.

It has been interesting to see what each author brings to the story, and to notice the subtle differences in tone and author voice. There have been some surprising twists along the way, as well.

In fact, up until recently there has been little discussion about the plot or characters at all. It truly is an experiment.

Last weekened was my turn to contribute. After reading all that had come before, it was a little daunting trying to figure out how to fit into this already established fantasy puzzle. Plus, I typically write science fiction. It has been awhile since I wrote a character that didn't have access to a laser or a friendly robot companion.

How was this going to play out?

Then I noticed an undeveloped corner of the narrative and the ideas started to flow. This thief guy, he didn't really have a voice yet. And he needed one...

To read what I did with Raibert the thief, go here. And while you're there, read the entire collaborative story. I think it is lots of fun. 

 
 
July 20, 2012

Talk about relief. When I first saw Michelle Audrey Black's personal site, and read that she was working on a review of A Star Curiously Singing, I was a bit...um...apprehensive. I mean, what writer would want to see a picture of their book under this sort of scrutiny?

I write alot of reviews myself (just check out Amazon, Goodreads, or Shelfari to see) but I've never used a notebook, or been as studious or thorough as it appeared Michelle was preparing to be. And when she posted the above picture, her comments made it clear she hadn't yet decided whether she liked the book or not.

A few days later, however, I started to feel a bit better...

Still had to wait for her final thoughts, though. Her review wasn't scheduled to post until the 19th of July...

So what did Michelle have to say? Well, you can read for yourself here. But my favorite lines are these:

"It followed me through the week, and in a fantastic way, the story has become part of me. It’s nestled down between the joint and the marrow of my bones."

Now that's worth waiting for.

 
 
July 1, 2012

The judges of the 2012 Readers Favorite Award Contest have named The Superlative Stream a Finalist in the Christian Fiction category. The winner will be announced September 1st, with an awards banquet to follow in November.

If you remember, A Star Curiously Singing recieved the Gold Medal last year from the Readers Favorite folk, so I was hopeful TSS would at least be a finalist this year—and now it is! So very happy and grateful. I look forward to the results!

You can read more about the Readers Favorite Awards here.

 
 
June 9, 2012

My publisher, Jeff Gerke, asked each of the Marcher Lord authors to do an introductory blog on the newly-revamped Marcher Lord Press site. With Ray Bradbury just having died, though, I really wasn't in the mood to talk about me, unless it was to show how the master storyteller had affected me as a writer.

 So that's what I did. To see what I wrote, go here.

 

May 13, 2012

So far, the reader response to Freeheads has been really good. As of this posting there are already eleven 5-star reviews on Amazon. In addition, the bloggers have been filling whitespace with glowing reviews.

:

Here's what author Shawna Williams had to say on her blog:

"I read a lot. I find a lot of books I enjoy, and I’m not stingy with my five star reviews, but books like this make me consider that maybe I need to be, because books such as this really belong in a different category all together."

And Lydia Presley had this to say on her blog, The Lost Entwife:

"I devoured it over spring break. I stayed up until the wee hours of the morning reading Freeheads and loved every single moment of it. There was so much character development that happened over the span of the previous books and everything just came together well in this finale. Plus… I love returning home moments, and I think, considering how he wrote this book, Kerry Nietz might just share that love."

Pretty cool, huh? Just click on the links above to read the reviews in their entirety.

 
 
November 29, 201
1

My third interview with AM Mayhem host Tommy Briggs is now available to listen to on the YES FM page here or if that no longer works, then just click here.

This time we're talking Freeheads. Check it out!

 
 
November 21, 2011

In a 4-way poll that saw it slugging it out with some truly great speculative novels, Freeheads has won the right to be the March 2012 reading selection for the ACFW book club.

This means that the last half of the month of March the book will be read and discussed on the book club forum. Then, the first Monday of April, there will be an online chat that I'll be a part of.

This is the same poll that A Star Curiously Singing won two years ago. (And that The Superlative Stream narrowly lost last year to P.A. Baines's Alpha Redemption.) Obviously, it is an honor to have one of my books selected again.

The ACFW book club has around 800 members, so this could mean a great deal of exposure for both the book and Marcher Lord Press. I'm looking forward to catching up with the book club again. They are a fun bunch of dedicated readers!

For more information, check out the ACFW book club page here.

 
 
November 15, 2011

Writer and reviewer Tim George again referenced The DarkTrench Saga in an article he wrote for Off The Grid News. You can view that article here.

And for Tim's reviews of A Star Curiously Singing and The Superlative Stream, go here, and here.

 
 
November 3, 2011

E. Stephen Burnett of Speculative Faith contacted me in August saying that they had "had many guest columns from Marcher Lord authors -- save you." Naturallly, I was shocked and embarassed to know that I was the final hold out.

So then I had to figure out what I was going to write that would interest these Speculative Fiction folks. I'm not one to liberally dispense writing advice, and I'm certainly not going to make the regular readers of that site more creative than they already are. (Many are published novelist already.)

Then  I thought, "Hey, why not use this as an opportunity to discuss the most controversial parts of my books?" With the trilogy being done, it seemed the perfect time to finally talk about how it all came to be.

So, that's what I did. Just laid it all out there. And you can read the final result here.

 
 
October 2, 2011

After a month of furious activity, the print version of Freeheads is now available to order from the Marcher Lord Press site. Amazon and Barnes & Noble soon to follow. (Along with eBook versions!) Keep watching this site for updates!

 
 
Semptember 8, 2011

Earlier this year I discovered that the rights to FoxTales had reverted to me. This meant I could attempt to get the story published again with another publishing house or publish it again myself. After some research and discussion with friends in the business, I decided to do the latter.

So, after months of revisions (I wanted FoxTales to be as good as I could make it with my current skillset, and to expand it some) I hired a graphic artist, set up publishing accounts with Amazon and Barnes & Noble and uploaded the book.

 

Currently, the new version of FoxTales is only available for Nook and Kindle, but if enough people want it, I will provide a printed version as well.

 

Aside from the new text I added, this version also has a new forward by my friend and fellow Fox developer, David Heindel. All good stuff.

 

You can buy it for Nook here, and Kindle here. Let me know what you think!

 

Semptember 2, 2011

For the first time in Marcher Lord Press history, our upcoming release is available for pre-order. That's right,  the next adventure of Sandfly, along with Kathy Tyer's Wind and Shadow, Steve Rzasa's Broken Sight, Olsen and Ingermanson's Oxygen, and Sharon Hinck's The Restorer can all be reserved at special discounted prices.

All you have to do, is go here. So go now!

 
Semptember 2, 2011

Koorong, which owns eighteen bookstores in seven Australian states and territories, has placed an order for 600 Marcher Lord Press novels. That's about 1,100 pounds of books that will soon be available either in stores down under, or by catalog. This is the largest international order for our little publishing house and we're obviously excited and pleased.

And, if you live in Australian and are dying for some cool speculative fiction, help is on the way!

 
 
Semptember 1, 2011

After a month of deliberation, the judges of the 2011 Readers Favorite Award Contest have awarded A Star Curiously Singing a Gold Medal in the Christian Fiction category. Though the book has been a finalist in numerous contests, this is the first time it has taken the coveted top spot. Obviously, I'm both pleased and excited to have one of my children honored in such a way.

Tis more fuel for what will doubtless prove to be a frenetic month of revising and editing of book three in the DarkTrench trilogy. For the full list of Readers Favorite winners and finalist, go here.

 
 
August 1, 2011

The judges of the 2011 Readers Favorite Award Contest have named A Star Curiously Singing a Finalist in both the Christian Fiction and Science Fiction categories. The winner in each category will be announced September 1st, with an awards banquet to follow.

I'm both honored and happy that my book was recognized in such a way. I look forward to the results!

You can read more about the Readers Favorite Awards here.

 
 
June 7, 2011

A couple months ago, our fearless leader Jeff Gerke approached the Marcher Lord Press authors with the idea of writing stories for a sci-fi anthology he wanted to publish. The title would be Ether Ore, and the only instruction he really gave us was that he wanted a space mining theme. Even that was flexible, though. In actuality what he really wanted was sci-fi stories from us, and to put them all together with a cool cover.

At first, I didn't think I'd participate. I mean, space mining? Nothing but rocks and ice and loneliness, right? Plus, I'd just finished the first draft of my next book, I was busy churning out Nook translations of our novels, updating WhereTheMapEnds, I'd been revising FoxTales...I have three kids...

Then he tried to entice us with the cool cover he designed. And I had to admit, it was pretty cool. He also said the plan was to only release to digital devices, which meant Kindle (where my books tend to do well) and Nook (which I'd end up having to translate anyway :) ).

 

I still didn't have a story idea, though. I like to be original and deep and use lots of astronomy when I can. But I didn't really want to write another Sandfly story. (He's got a great one coming already.) Still, it would be nice to showcase my writing in a short story venue.

 

Then I thought, "You know, there are places mentioned in the Sandfly stories that might be fun to explore. And what if I wrote this one in third-person present...so almost like Sandfly, but not quite."

 

That was the start of the story Graxin. And I'm really happy with how it turned out.

 

I'm also happy to be included in a book with some of the most talented and nicest people I know--my Marcher Lord family. So if you have a Nook or Kindle or aren't averse to reading on your computer (because their are free Nook for PC and Kindle for PC apps available) then get yourself a copy of Ether Ore, either here (Nook) or here (Kindle).

 
 
May 10, 2011

Finalist for the 2011 Next Generation Indie Book Awards have been announced, and this year The Superlative Stream has the honor of being one of them. In the Religious Fiction category, it took the podium along with the great book by P.A. Baines, Alpha Redemption. The category was won by An Uncommon Crusade by Caron Guillo.

In addition, fellow Marcher Lord Press authors Jill Williamson and Marc Schooley were both recently named as Finalist for this year's Christy Award. Year of the Marcher Lord, round two? I think so!

You can read more about the Indie Book Awards here.

 
 
April 15, 2011

A few months back Paeter of Spirit Blade Productions posted on the Lost Genre Guild asking for speculative authors to interview for his internet show. So, of course I took him up on it! You can hear the results of that interview here. And if that link doesn't work, try here.

I think I did okay. Give it a listen.

 

 
 
March 30 2011

I was surprised recently to find a reference from one of my books used in an article discussing the growth of sharia law worldwide. The article is written by writer Tim George, who is also an avid book reviewer. (You can find his review of A Star Curiously Singing here, and The Superlative Stream here.)

For the article itself, go here.

 
 
March 15, 2011

Just sixteen more days until the next round of Marcher Lord Press titles release, and I gotta say I'm excited. First there's the reissue of Kathy Tyers's Firebird Trilogy, complete with annotations.

 

Then there's the final book in Jill Williamson's award-winning Blood of Kings trilogy, From Darkness Won, and the long awaited second book by Mitchell Bonds, Hero in Hiding.

Exciting, exciting stuff for the speculative fiction fan. You can find out more about the books and even read samples here! Check 'em out!

 
 
February 9, 2011

Last summer writer Sam Batterman asked me if I'd read his book and write a cover recommendation.  I was greatly honored that he'd think of me, so of course I said "send it!"

(Plus, his pedigree was very similar to my own: Computer Science degree, lives in the midwest, works at Microsoft. How could I refuse?)

The draft I recieved was still a very early draft, but I could see the sparks of a cool Michael Crichton-like story in it. I then purchased and read Sam's previous book Wayback (a time-travel novel), and loved it.

I knew Sam had what it takes to churn out the great book I thought Maximal Reserve could be. And now he's done it...

And if you look on that shiny back cover, you'll see my recommendation...

You can find Sam's new book at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Christianbook.com. Check it out!

 

 
 
February 1, 2011

After ten months of writing, I finally have the first draft of Book Three of the DarkTrench Saga done. For many reasons, this book seemed like a long haul to me. Part of that is due to the fact that the other two had a fair share of breaks in the middle.

Book One only took five months intially, but it was much shorter (48,000 words) and by the time it became a published novel (and reached 78,000 words), there had been lots of stops and starts, lots of pauses while I waited for input.

Book Two was started during one of those pauses. In fact, from April of 2009 to July, I worked on The Superlative Stream, while waiting on Jeff's approval of Book One and a signed contract. I then picked up TSS again after ASCS went into print. So I had a four or five month stint, put it down, and then went back to it in October of 2009. Finished the first draft in December of that year. It was over 82,000 words long.

There were no real pauses from the time the first revision of TSS was complete and the time it became available. From January of 2010 to April of 2010 it was a full-out writing sprint to the finish line. So, no time to start on Book Three. (TSS ended up being around 92,000 words.)

I started writing Book Three in April of 2010, but there were a few short interruptions--chiefly the birth of my third child and the death of my wife's grandmother. Life stuff. I'm also in training for a Pump and Run event being held this Spring. More going on in an already full life.

Still, I kept my usual writing pace as much as possible. Getting a few hours in every weekday. But it was more like a marathon this time than a sprint.

The final product is checking in at almost 102,000 words. It could get smaller, but I doubt it. I tend to write lean. Putting in just those things I know need to be there. I rely on Jeff and other readers to drag out of me the things they need to fully understand what I'm creating.

Here's hoping what I have is a good thing. A worthy thing. Sandfly and his gang deserve that.

 
 
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