A Cold December…

It’s here. The milestone I’ve dreamt about for an entire year. A milestone I’ve been dreading all November, but it’s too late to stop.

December is out today, which means that it is time to say goodbye to Ember. Time to lay the Intercalary to rest.

It’s hard to let go of characters, regardless. Whether you’re reading them or you’ve written them, you travel a distance with these people. You get attached to them.

(Yes, even when you’re killing them off systematically.)

So today is the day that I send the last of them off into the world.
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The cover is a placeholder. Brian has been unfortunately overwhelmed with real world responsibilities. The black and white cover will be updated shortly. The remaining color covers will follow. I hope you’re looking forward to seeing his work realized as much as I am.

But it’s certainly not the end of surprises.

With December out, I will be turning my focus to physical copies of the serial installments. If you happen to be in Lake Orion this weekend, I’ll be at Orion Township Public Library for the Authors and Illustrators Fair and I will have copies of January on hand.
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I’ll be releasing the series throughout the beginning of 2017.

As if that weren’t enough excitement for 2017, January will find me seeking comfort with familiar company. I will be returning to the Delaney House to start writing House of Thirteen Book Two. I can’t reveal much just yet, but I can tell you that it will be nice to catch up with Ren and Joe again.

There will definitely be other surprises along the way. 2016 has been an interesting year, and I feel like the only respectable response is to raise the bar for myself once again.

Get December, and please remember to review online. It’s much appreciated.

My Father & Mr. Brooks

Many years back, when I was a precocious young lad, my father devised an ingenious method of education and torture – you’ve heard of edutainment? This is tortucation – or it might have been for some other kid.

When I got in trouble, my punishment was not a simple grounding. Instead, I had to read a book and write a book report. At home. Had to. The horror.

I was allowed to choose the book, but my dad got veto. I wasn’t such a fan of writing then, but I already enjoyed reading. The writing… well, you can see where that got to. I was already a reader, I don’t think anything in the world could have stopped that. I had a good system and a lot of encouragement to get me into books. But if ever there were a fundamental set of moments in my life that turned me into a reader, this is where it started.

While I got to choose many of my own “punishments,” on occasion my dad would pick out a book and tell me that was the one I was going to read. It was a test. He’d pick out books he already knew, and ask me questions about them, to see what I was getting from the reading. Often enough, I was getting the story, but not the subtext. I needed to be persuaded into understanding that – I won’t lie, it took years.

But through this process, I was introduced to many of the greats: Isaac Asimov, Piers Anthony, Anne McCaffery, Harlan Ellison… and somewhere among them was Terry Brooks. And of all the authors that attempted to cross the line from the “dad’s authors” camp into my own favorites, Terry was one of the few who truly won me over with his brand of fantasy.

When people recollect their favorite stories, when they get glassy eyed about a story, like they’ve been there – like they’ve lived there… for me, that was Landover, the magical land in Magical Kingdom for Sale – SOLD.

I’m not going to get into the story. I’m not even going to persuade you with anything but the fact that I love it. It was MY Harry Potter… long before Harry would ever figure out his legacy. It’s a series that I have never finished, mostly because I didn’t want it to end. But after last night – close to twenty-five years after that first introduction – I feel like I should finally finish it. I feel like I owe Mr. Brooks that much.

I met Terry Brooks tonight at a signing in one of my favorite places – Schuler Books, Eastwood. (There’s nothing wrong with the Okemos one, I just prefer Eastwood.) He read us a bit of his latest work, he answered all the questions we had to offer. He was charming and down-to-earth and just everything we all hope our idols will be.

And if you have ever met one of your heroes, you know that everything you think about while you are watching them, everything you think about when you are in line, everything you want to say – it’s gone when it’s your turn to say anything. Maybe you are better than me, but I stammered out a thank you. It carried all of the words I wanted to say, and whether he heard all that or not, he still seemed appreciative.

Then I did something I had been debating since I parked my car.

I brought a bookmark. One of my bookmarks. On the front was the House of Thirteen cover, and on the back, I wrote something (in the car, where I left most of my wit and courage).

I wrote: “Terry – Thank you. For a lifetime of inspiration.” Then I signed it.

I handed it to him and stammered out something about hoping it’d be worth more someday. He looked at it, then he said thank you to me.

Me.

We talked for a quick second, he asked where he could find my books, and he said he’d check me out. I got a photo, we shook hands, and that’s where my moment ended. Even if it was just banter, I appreciate the hell out of it.

Seriously, Terry Brooks, thank you. For the twenty-five years of wonder you have instilled in me. For being part of a great and wonderful pantheon that I strive to one day join.

For being you. And for doing what you love.

Thank you.

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It’s about time… no, really.

Originally, I wanted to release this as I was getting it: in stages. But I realized that some people out there might not want to wait for the full reveal. I understand. I am impatient as well. So, I thought it best not to say anything until it was time. It has been very hard to think about anything else since NaNoWriMo concluded this year.

And not only is it time, but it’s about time. The story, I mean.

At Calendar’s End is the story of time – or the end of it. The beings that control the passage of time find themselves dealing with an adversary both powerful and unpredictable. They have no defenses against it and worse – if they fail to stop it, all time will cease to be.

The story is a serial delivered in twelve parts over the course of 2016. Each episode (except January) will be released on the first of the month, and feature an approximate 10000 words of suspense.

Because so many people have told me how they cannot wait for the next book in the House of Thirteen series to come, I decided (at least once) I would not force anyone to wait in suspense when they finished with part one. Both January and February will be available on February 1, 2016.

The serial will be available in Kindle format for the time being, with a future release in paperback. And in the event that anyone wants to wait for the end of the series before picking it up, the omnibus will be available at the end of 2016.

Pre-orders will begin very soon. In the meantime, enjoy the beautiful artwork by Brian Ritson.

January

T-Minus 20160 Minutes (Give or Take)

Christmas is two weeks away yet. That means that most of us haven’t finished shopping. I don’t know what the people in your life want, but I can still tell you what you should get them.

And seriously, if they don’t like what I’m proposing, they don’t deserve gifts. Like, ever again.

Click the images to link to a rabbit hole of gifty goodness. Each of these people are wonderfully imaginative, creative souls who have put themselves into their work and deserve to be recognized for their beautiful efforts. There is far more than you see in this list.

Go on, explore away and happy shopping!

Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 12.37.17 AM Norse-based Urban Fantasy by Mary E. Twomey

Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 12.41.08 AM Coming of Age Fantasy by Madeline Freeman

Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 12.39.30 AM Forget-A-Bots, sculptures by Brian Ritson

Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 12.35.25 AM Post-apocalyptic Sci-fi by Samie Sands

Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 12.42.44 AM Romance / Chick Lit by J. Thomas-Like

Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 12.45.02 AM ChicalooKate, Pop culture prints and magnets

Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 12.46.40 AM Urban Mythology by Sara-Beth Cole

Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 12.47.57 AM Romance / Women’s Fiction by Parker J. Cole

And if you still haven’t found enough gifts for all the people on your list, I hear this guy’s books are pretty alright…

House of 13 Supernatural Fantasy by moi.

 

 

Six long days away…

The premiere for House of Thirteen is this Saturday, Nov. 7. I am looking very forward to this. The Book Cottage is kind enough to host me, and I’d like to make it as wonderful as possible. Please consider sharing the image around to let others in the area know about it. Thanks, and I hope to see you there.

Shout it to the rafters.

Shout it to the rafters.

Ladies and Gentlemen…

Get your costumes in order, put out your jack o’lanterns, and get yourself settled in.

It’s going to be a dark and stormy night around here. The best time to settle in with a supernatural tale.

For those of you who have pre-ordered, you should already have it in your Kindle library. For those who didn’t, it’s far too late.

Fortunately, House of Thirteen is available in paperback and ebook right now.

Order now.

Enjoy – and Happy Halloween!

The long wait for House of Thirteen is almost over…

Actually… it IS over. Technically.Copy in hand

House of Thirteen, Book One is now available for pre-order for Kindle! The official release date is Halloween, but you can order your copy now to be delivered to your devices as your very own personal trick or treat from me. The book will also be available on Halloween, but those can’t be set for pre-order. If you are planning to buy the paperback, e-books will be automatically discounted for you to acquire the matching set.

Can’t wait for Halloween to get your reading fix? I also have a new story out in a horror anthology. Tales of Horror on Halloween Night – curated by the amazing Samie Sands – is out now for Kindle and paperback.

I hope your Halloween is going to be as exciting as mine!