You get an edit, and you get an edit! And literally all of my books are going to get edits.

A quick update on all them books what I'm hoping to get squared away by the end of the year. 

 

First (in my heart and this post), CHAOS TRIMS MY BEARD. Earlier this year on a whim I entered Chaos into the Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off, which is a 300 book/10 blog contest run by all-around good author chap Mark Lawrence. Chaos got slotted in over at Fantasy-Faction and, insanely, has not yet fallen under their review team's exacting axe. It has been nerve-wracking and exciting and a whole bunch of other emotions. Other people, people I've never even met, have read Chaos, and generously rated it and offered their thoughts. The responses have been heart-stopping, mainly because people actually seem to like the super weird thing that is Edwayn's weekend adventure.

And they've also been humbling in that, almost universally, each has mentioned the poor state of the book's edit.

And they're right. I completely own the fact that in some editions "else" is misspelled as "esle" on the first page, and that for some reason, gray/grey are used interchangeably, which is insane because two of the main characters are literally that color. I missed these things and more, and maybe in my fervor to get the book up to snuff for the contest, or because I'd worked on it for three years and I was done, these blemishes got through. Long story short, the version available on Kindle right now (and pretty much every other platform when my current Select period runs out in December--more on that later) corrects the most egregious errors. I'm engaged with Amazon to get an update pushed out to people who already have the book, but it's a somewhat inscrutable process having not done it before. So, I apologize to everyone who had to deal with the errors. An even cleaner, professionally edited ebook and POD paperback are right at the top of my list of things to do before the holidays. Growing pains, and such.

Moving on to HAMMER SQUAD. This book was a pain to write because I went from one POV in Chaos to three or four in Aerodance to even a bit more than that. And it's a fantasy military tale that is kind of Band of Brothers, kind of Tom Clancy-esque special forces technothriller, and also it takes place in Chaos's world like a thousand years before Edwayn. It's super weird, but I like it. I'm finishing up narrative edits by Thanksgiving and then it too is off to the scrutinizing surgeons for some professional proofing. Depending on the length of that process, I'm hoping for a late November/Early December release on pretty much every notable platform as well as Createspace paperback.

Also, let's take a minute for AERODANCE: A NEON SPACE OPERA, both as a series and the next installment. The three currently released episodes very likely need the same polishing love that Chaos is going to get, and making that happen is right at the top of the list. Episode 4: Call of the Void is going to be out just before Christmas as a standalone and as part of the first Aerodance bundle of four episodes. If you've been reading along with the story of the starship Dragosa and its crew but are thinking that maybe Tyto and Rock have gotten too much screen time and you want to see what's going on with Mira and Gunner, well, I hope you like the next book.

So, again, thank you to everyone who has read or is interested in any of these stories. I'm sorry for the sloppiness, and promise to do better. There's a lot books out there, and if you've found yourself reading mine, you deserve to have your time respected. Have a good turkey day if that's something you're going to celebrate, or just enjoy the insane snap-chats of the seething hordes bum-rushing Targets and Walmarts at 3am on Friday.

Hammer Squad and beyond

Summer is winding down, and in the spirit of all the students scurrying back to school and engaging in the high octane deathmatch that is parking at literally any university, I too am taking a hard-charging approach to gridlock and am fixing to get out some fancy new books.

First on the docket, and very hopefully out by the end of September is Hammer Squad. I like the world that Chaos Trims My Beard established, and I wanted to write more in it but not in such a way that infringes on the ongoing stories of Edwayn and Venrick. In the glossary at the end of Chaos, there's a few entries that hint that all was most certainly not well in the intervening time between the Burst and the establishment of the relatively stable society on display in that story. Hammer Squad pulls us back to those first couple of generations after the cataclysm, when humans and dwarves and elves were all eying each other skeptically but maybe thinking about giving it a go together. 

The titular Hammer Squad is a dwarven special forces outfit led by Foreman Dundrear of Hardshoulder. He's full dwarf, a many-decades veteran of fighting above and below ground, and he keeps a few framing hammers up his sleeves just in case he gets separated from his bigger stuff. The story follows one of the first attempts at integrating the forces of the very different societies of elves and humans and dwarves, and I had a fun time crafting what is—at least in part—something like The Expendables but with magic and sledgehammers. It's a military fantasy thriller with covert operations, world-weary commanders, plucky recruits, big explosive showdowns, and some shadowy plotting to nefarious, conspiratorial ends. I hope that you find it fun in the way that Chaos was fun.

After that, we're looking at something totally different in The Shadow Net. It's 206X, and one-time corporate enforcer Lee Bishop is hired to find out why a recently dead socialite is suddenly active on everyone's social media feeds. Thrills! Near-future tech! Brooding! I've got a draft nearly done and then it'll get the polish and shine and be out a bit after Hammer Squad.

Beyond that, before the holidays, Aerodance 4 will get out and pull together the first arc of the Neon Space Opera, and the collection of the first four stories will be available as an e-book bundle. I've also got a massive pile of notes and drafted scenes that, when assembled, look something like the next Edwayn and Venrick story. I was hoping to have it out by summer as the very last page of Chaos advertises, but my brain comes up with good intentions while my fingers scream at all the typing they've suddenly been signed up for. More writing updates next Monday.

Chaos and Aerodance Released

So, I wrote some books. Chaos Trims My Beard: A Fantasy Noir, and Aerodance: A Neon Space Opera- Episode 1: Pilots are now both available on Kindle and in paperback.

Chaos has been an active project in some form or another for almost five years. But that is what I get when I decided to make my first novel be a fantasy story, a mystery noir, and a dark comedy all in one. And now it's here and I very much hope you enjoy it. Towards the end of the book, there's a note from me that talks about some short stories/novellas coming out that expand the stories of Chaos (and Aerodance). Chaos's bonus story is well on its way and focuses on the origins of a certain young, air-headed woman and how she came to be in the position that she is by the time Chaos rolls around.

The other book, Aerodance, was born out of me asking myself if the glitzy, laser-saturated tone of 80's and 90's space cartoons and anime could possibly be captured in a novel. Episode 1: Pilots, was written like a TV pilot in that we're jumping all over the galaxy seeing character origins and following different locations, but pretty soon we're going to have a handful of people aboard a ship, being sort of a family while they sort of save the galaxy. I'm going to talk more about the Aerodance series and its release structure and whatnot soon, but for now, Episode 2: Through the Gates is coming out at the end of this month. The bonus story is going to focus on the origin of the series' main location, the Dragosa, and is going to be available here and in the mailing list in the next few weeks.