On the road again

Miss D. and I are driving home today, after a brief but enjoyable research trip which included meeting some friends.  It’s going to be a long day on the road, about 11 hours including stops, so we’ll make an early start. Prayers for travelling mercies are, as always, appreciated.  Blogging will be light today (and, as usual on Sundays, tomorrow too).  Regular service will resume Monday, the good Lord willing and the creek don’t rise. Peter

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Shattered Under Midnight

Raina escaped to Freeport with a tour booked under a stolen ID, and a plan to lose herself in the city. Instead, she found a city in revolt, and now both sides are after her to control the alien gifts engineered into her DNA. Her only ally is an offworld investigator trying to get to the bottom of the explosive mix of on-planet and alien politics… but his secrets are even deadlier than her own. From the back alleys of the souk to the depths of alien ruins, they’re now in a desperate fight to stop the revolution before everything

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A final reminder about the Dragon Awards

As I mentioned some days ago, a reader contacted me to ask about nominating one of my books for this year’s Dragon Awards.  That was a pleasant surprise, and I invited him to go ahead, on the understanding that there are many good books out there, and I don’t think I’m likely to be in the running this year. Be that as it may, the deadline for nominations is July 20th.  Therefore, if you think the book is good enough, please use the DragonCon nomination form to nominate “An Airless Storm” for this year’s awards, in the category “Best Military Science Fiction or Fantasy

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Jon del Arroz has a new book out

It’s a stand-alone novella in his steampunk series, giving added depth to one of his characters from his first steampunk book, “For Steam and Country“.  The new book is titled “Knight Training“. The blurb reads: Airships, Guns, and Gadgets! The Knights of the Crystal Spire are more than ordinary fantasy knights. Life as an apprentice knight hasn’t been easy on James Gentry. As a commoner and an outsider, he’s been ridiculed, picked on, and shunned by the other boys. But he’s determined to become one of the finest knights Rislandia has ever seen. During his training, James stumbles upon a master knight selling information

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Storms, and a bleg

Pitsnipes Gripes (warning:  site content is sometimes NSFW) has  afascinating post containing GIF (i.e. animated) photographic sequences of storms.  Here’s one to whet your appetite. There are many more at the link.  Recommended viewing. Click on each image for a larger view.Also, I need to ask a favor of my readers.  My “Cochrane’s Company” trilogy is now fully published, with the first book coming out in May, the second in June, and the final volume earlier this month. As I write these words, the review count is as follows: Volume 1, “The Stones of Silence” – 64 reader reviewsVolume 2, “An Airless

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Another nail in the coffin of politically correct comics

We’ve discussed the plague of political correctness in the comic industry in these pages before.  Fortunately, enraged fans are voting with their pocketbooks and wallets in unprecedented numbers, bankrolling independent comics that are emerging as a real force in the market, and strong challengers to the established publishers. Jon del Arroz, a fellow author and friend whom we’ve met in these pages before, is trying to join their number.  He’s launched a fundraiser to publish his first independent comic – and he’s looking for a lot less money than some of his competitors, which I think is a good sign.  He’s starting small, and looking

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Move over, Kama Sutra – it’s time for the Archisutra!

Caution:  mildly NSFW content below the break. Trust an architect! London-based architect Miguel Bolivar recently released his side project Archisutra, an architecture and design take on the Kama Sutra. This manual gives you all the data with annotated scale drawings and informative descriptions including categorizations of ‘Typical Location’ and ‘Sustainability’. Each position is inspired by an iconic building and often incorporates the use of designer furniture. (Below is an example from the book. The anatomically correct drawing has been omitted, for obvious reasons.  Click the image for a larger view.) Bolivar explains the project arose from questioning how sex should

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Maybe I should learn from Iceland . . .

Perhaps indie authors such as myself might consider drawing inspiration from an Icelandic translator of Bram Stoker’s famous horror novel ‘Dracula’. See, the Icelandic version of Dracula, what is called “Makt Myrkranna” or “Powers of Darkness”, isn’t a little different from the English version. It’s a LOT different. I’m not talking about the difference between the comic book Spider-Man and the movie Spider-Man; I’m talking about the difference between the comic book Spider-Man and Nelson Mandela. Somewhere along the line, the story we think we know got crossbred, vivisected, electroshocked, reanimated, and taught karate. And it’s awesome. First, the Count now

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Lessons learned from my latest SF trilogy

Those of you interested in the art, craft and science of writing may find my latest article at Mad Genius Club interesting.  It’s titled “Lessons learned from a trilogy, Part 2: the impact on sales of rapid releases, and other factors“, and is the second in a two-part series analyzing what I’ve learned from launching my “Cochrane’s Company” trilogy at four-week intervals.  (The first article, published a month ago, may be found here, if you missed it.) When reading the article (and its predecessor), note the comments from other readers at Mad Genius Club.  Many of them are also authors, or serious

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Oh, lord, the memories

The anonymous blogger at HMS Defiant made me laugh out loud this morning when he posted this video montage of the “wisdom” of the legendary Chiun, the Master of Sinanju, from the “Destroyer” series of pulp novels.  It’s an excerpt from the only film made from the series, “Remo Williams:  The Adventure Begins“. I remember those books very well.  They, along with other pulp series such as Mack Bolan (“the Executioner”), the Survivalist, and others were staples in almost every military base in which I found myself, along with Westerns by Louis L’Amour, J. T. Edson and sundry other writers.  Copies were circulated in barracks around the nation, many of them so

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