Good Stuff for YOU

Monday, December 31, 2012

Tasting Never Blog Hop!

Another blog hop - and I'm excited about this one!

Author CM Stunich has come up with another winner - Tasting Never!  Now, I won't give away details here - for that, you'll have to visit HER blog, link HERE - but her writing is VIVID, it's ALIVE - you want to jump in and get alongside the characters!

So - if YOU want to win all sorts of cool stuff - YES WINNING STUFF IS COOL! - then click on the NEXT link (below) and you'll get lots and lots of chances to do so!


Monday, December 24, 2012

Just in time for Christmas

To all of my readers, followers, friends and family -

May you all have a very merry christmas!

Thursday, December 20, 2012


Amazing Stories, the world's first science fiction magazine, opens for Beta Testing of Phase 1 on Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013.

Fifty+ Writers Sign On to provide genre-related content!

Experimenter Publishing Company
Hillsboro, NH
December 20, 2012

The Experimenter Publishing Company is pleased to announce the reintroduction of the world's most recognizable science fiction magazine – AMAZING STORIES!

Set to relaunch with a Beta Test of its new Social Magazine Platform, Amazing Stories will feature content from 50+ bloggers, covering an enormous array of subjects of interest to genre fans.

We've got authors and agents, bloggers and editors, pod casters and broadcasters; we've got gamers and game designers; artists and art collectors; pulpsters and indie authors; we've got Hugo winners, John W. Campbell Memorial Award winners, John W. Campbell Best New Writer winners, Nebula and Hugo Award winners and nominees and winners and nominees of many other awards; people who review films, people who make films; we've got fanboys and fangirls; we've got former editors of Amazing Stories, writers who've become synonymous with the field and writers who are just getting started; comic artists, book reviewers; traditionally published authors, self-pubbed authors and authors who've done it all. The response to my request for participation was phenomenal – it couldn't be more perfect if I had set out with a list of must-haves!” said Steve Davidson, publisher.

Amazing Stories' Social Magazine platform is designed to create an interactive environment that will be familiar to fans with blog content designed to encourage discussion and take things beyond the usual user-generated content model for social networks.

The Amazing Stories Blog Team will cover (for now – more coming!) fourteen popular topics – Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror, (lit), Film, Television, Gaming, Comics and Graphic Works, the Visual Arts, the Pulps, Audio Works, Anime, the Business of Publishing, Science and Fandom itself.

At this year's Worldcon (Chicon 7 the 70th Worldcon, Chicago), Toastmaster John Scalzi talked about what it was to be a fan and concluded by saying
We are diverse - and we are all in this together.”

We are diverse – and we are all in this together, a sentiment that captures the very heart and soul of what it means to be a fan. Amazing Stories aims to be a vehicle through which the diversity of fandom can come together.

Amazing Stories' relaunch will take place in two phases. Those interested in participating in the Beta Test of Phase 1 should contact the publisher at Participants will receive full access to the site with Member status and will receive on-site benefits as the project moves forward.

Phase 2 will introduce additional interactivity and user-customization to the site. Following the completion and testing of Phase 2, the magazine, featuring both new and reprint fiction, essays, photo galleries, reviews and more will begin publication. Readers who are interested in what the magazine will look like can read two Relaunch Prelaunch issues on line, or download them from the Amazing Stories store. (Additional Amazing Stories themed product is also available here.)

Experimenter Publishing is pleased to introduce the Amazing Stories Blog Team:

Cenobyte, Mike Brotherton, Ricky L. Brown, Michael A. Burstein,

Catherine Coker, Johne Cook, Paul Cook, Gary Dalkin, Jane Frank,

Jim Freund, Adam Gaffen, Chris Garcia, Chris Gerwel, Tommy Hancock,

Liz Henderson, Samantha Henry, M. D. Jackson, Monique Jacob,

Geoffrey James, J. J. Jones, Peggy Kolm, Justin Landon, Andrew Liptak,

Melissa Lowery, Barry Malzberg, C. E. Martin, Farrell J. McGovern,

Steve Miller, Matt Mitrovich, Aidan Moher, Kevin Murray, Ken Neth,

Astrid Nielsch, D. Nicklin-Dunbar, John Purcell, James Rogers,

Diane Severson, Doug Smith, Lesley Smith, Bill Spangler, Duane Spurlock,

Michael J. Sullivan, G. W. Thomas, Erin Underwood, Stephan Van Velzen,

Cynthia Ward, Michael Webb, Keith West, John M. Whalen, Ann Wilkes,

Karlo Yeager, Leah Zeldez


Originally published in 1926 by the father of science fiction, Hugo Gernsback, Amazing Stories helped to launch both the science fiction genre and its most enduring feature, science fiction fandom. The magazine is well known for its Frank R. Paul covers and for publishing the first stories by many iconic authors such as Isaac Asimov, Jack Williamson and Ursula Le Guin. Published continuously from 1926 until 1995, followed by two brief resurrections from 1998 till 2000 and again from 2004 thru 2005. In 2008 Hasbro, the then current owner, allowed the trademarks to lapse and publisher Steve Davidson applied for and eventually received them in 2011.

Additional history and background on Amazing Stories can be found at the Science Fiction Encyclopedia and Wikipedia. A complete gallery of all 609 previous issues with publication history is also available.

The Experimenter Publishing Company was created in 2012 for the purpose of returning Amazing Stories magazine to regular publication. The company shares the name of the original magazine's publisher as homage. The trademarks for Amazing Stories were acquired by Steve Davidson in 2011, the previous owners having allowed the marks to lapse in 2008, at which time application was made for a new incarnation of the same title.


For more information regarding Amazing Stories, the Blog Team and the Beta Test of the new site, please contact Steve Davidson via email at

To contact one of the Blog Team:

J. Jay Jones
Barry Malzberg
Farrell J. McGovern
Lesley Smith
Bill Spangler
Michael J. Sullivan
Stephan Van Velzen
Karlo Yeager

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Beyond The Books

Read to the end and then there's a little surprise...

Writers write.
At least, that's what we've been told.
'You should always have a notebook to jot down ideas so you don't lose them!'
'Remember, writing is a gift! Treasure it!'
'If you're not writing, you're not living up to your dreams.'

Oh, stop it.
Writing is a job. Writing is work. And, frankly, if you do nothing but write, you're going to get stale or go insane very quickly!
And if it's a job – it doesn't pay very well, for most writers. Not enough to live on, at least. Maybe enough to make life a little more comfortable.
So you work another job. Or two. And you squeeze in time to write when the family is sleeping, or watching TV, or out running errands. Or maybe you just say, 'I'm writing, please don't disturb me right now.' (As opposed to 'GO AWAY!')
Still, you're WORKING.
You have to do SOMETHING outside of work, right? A hobby, a cause.
For me, it's been Cub Scouts.
Since my oldest was a Wolf (that's the second year of Cub Scouts, after Tiger Scouts) I've been involved. Den leader – do you know how challenging it can be to ride herd on a pack of seven- and eight-year-old boys? But being the leader can be fun. You plan the activities, you get the parents involved, you help the boys finish them – very, very rewarding.
I've also been Advancements. Huh? It means that, once a month I used to make the trek into the city to the Scout Shop and pick up all the pins and belt loops and badges the boys had earned that month. That wasn't fun. Chasing down the other den leaders, trying to get the order – because the Shop is a good 45 minutes away, it requires two hours to get there, shop and get back, which isn't easy to get on my schedule! - all a royal pain. But seeing the boys' faces when they get their little loops, or the pins, based on what they've done? Priceless.
And I'm committee chair. I lead the parents in the behind-the-scenes planning of the pack, everything from the monthly calendar to the big fundraiser (Do you want to buy some popcorn?) to the big events, Pinewood Derby, Blue & Gold Banquet, Spring Trip.
Six years I've been doing this now. My oldest is a Boy Scout now; but the youngest is now a Wolf. So three more years of Cub Scouts – three more years of watching these kids grow and learn, three more years of saying, 'My boys...', three more years of seeing their faces every Monday night.
Then off to Boy Scouts, where the boys take center stage and the parents get to be in the background.
Ought to be interesting.
But that's what keeps me sane, when work gets too much.

RAFFLECOPTER! Click link to enter!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Another interview

Look, a link to follow to find out some good stuff!

CM Stunich

Oh, and if you missed it - The Kildaran is now available on Smashwords for FREE - the ENTIRE book, for ANY eReader!

So what are you hanging around here for?  GO GET IT!  SPREAD THE WORD!  Leave a review, if you are so moved.


Friday, December 7, 2012

A review!

Okay, so I wanted to share this with y'all..

The Kildaran
-Adam Gaffen and Richard Evans, based on a universe by John Ringo

It is rather curious that while I normally like John Ringo’s writing, Ghost was the only book of his that I couldn't really get into.  By around CH7 of the first part of the novel, my sense of the absurd was overpowering my suspension of disbelief and I gave up.  But then I read Book Two and found myself hooked.  The Paladin of Shadows series is politically incorrect, strongly short, very much like James Bond.  Mike Harmon, former SEAL, is just what every man wants to be. 

The series is set in an alternate universe of sorts, where a tribe of families – the Kilder – live in a mountain settlement in Georgia (the country, not the state).  In Book Two, Mike accidentally becomes their leader and starts training them up as proper warriors.  This expands rapidly through the next three books, with the families eventually serving as a Special Operations force closely allied to the US military, battling terrorists, insurgents, criminals...and saving the world on more than one occasion.  John doesn’t sugar-coat anything; the villains are very evil, the barbaric habits and customs of certain cultures are illustrated, along with the result of criminal activities like drug trafficking and sexual slavery. 

Part of the charm of the series lies in the Kilder themselves.  At first, they appear to be just another tribe in a barbaric and deeply corrupt country.  As the series continues to expand, however, they reveal surprising depths – and their origins, drawn from a lost tribe of Vikings.  (This isn't entirely impossible.  There are suggestions that Romans, captured in Persia, eventually ended up in China.)  Some of their customs are thoroughly odd, but just right to appeal to the readers.  One example is a form of ‘bride price,’ with the bride selling her virginity to Mike for her dowry.  And even that has deeper implications...

One of the most important characters in the series is Katrina, a young girl who Mike rescued right back at the start of Book Two.  Unsurprisingly, she fell in love with him; surprisingly, Mike didn't move in on her at once.  Katrina set her sights on becoming the Kildaran, the wife of the KIldar, and was working towards it when John Ringo put the series on hiatus. 

Adam Gaffen and Richard Evens, however, have continued the series with The Kildaran.  With Mike settling into a kind of domestic life in the village, complete with harem, Katrina finally makes her move, convincing him to marry her.  In the meantime – because it wouldn't be the same without a B-Plot – several nukes have gone missing in Russia and one of them might be on the way to the village.  Another seems to be heading for Moscow...which is a problem, because Mike and Putin have clashed once before and Putin wants him dead.   

As Mike allows his relationship with Katrina to grow and develop, the teams scramble to hunt down the nukes before they can be deployed, unaware that a deadly shadow from the past has returned to take revenge on Mike – and one of his most trusted allies. 

I wrote two books set in one of John Ringo’s universes, but Adam and Richard took on a much harder task, using John Ringo’s characters.  I can offer no higher praise than to say that all of the characters sound right, very much like their original versions.  Even the ones who have grown up over the novel (and previous books) show very definite links to the past, particularly Katya.  It is a rare fan fiction writer who manages to mimic the original style so well, but this book definitely succeeds. 

Like the books written by John Ringo in this universe, the novel is delightfully and outrageously over the top.  Beautiful women, cool gadgets, villains who thoroughly deserve every bad thing that happens to them, a complete lack of political correctness...

What more do you want?

The Kildaran can be downloaded for free from

Or you can visit the author’s blog -

And you can download the first five books from

Thursday, November 29, 2012


Sorry, I don't like to shout, but...

The final (for now) version of The Kildaran is available - I know, it took forever. 

It is NOT available by email.

Go to and you can download the whole thing - FOR FREE!  The only condition is, we want reviews; honest reviews!  (Though, glowing 'we love the whole thing' reviews will not be refused!)

So go ahead.  I'll even give you a link.


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Next Big Thing Blog Hop

Before I begin at the beginning, I want to thank Kim Murch Emerson for getting the ball rolling and starting this hop on her blog,

So what's a blog hop?  You know, I asked the same question.  And the answer is - a single theme spreading from blog to blog, reflecting support both backwards (Kim) and forwards (the tags at the end).

What's the theme?  Well, here, it's ME!  Specifically, the next book.  Without further ado, on to the hop!

What is the title of your book? It's a long one:  The Cassidy Chronicles, Book 2: A Deadly Quest

Where did the idea for the book come from?   Well, it's a continuation of the Cassidy Chronicles, which started with Run Like Hell, and will continue past this for at least two more volumes.

What genre does your book fall under?  If I had to pick ONE, I'd say science fiction - because, after all, it's set in the 22nd century.  But it's an adventure, a thriller, a mystery, with comedic and romantic elements as well.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?  Self-published, most likely by the 1st of December.  As an indie author, just getting into the market, I am trying to spread the word and get my name out there, get the attention of some of the publishing houses.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your book?  I'm a bit odd, as I don't really do a outline/rough draft/first draft/final draft progression.  Each day, when I write, I begin by reviewing what I wrote the day before.  This allows me to refresh my memory, get back into the feel of the story, and smooth over any flaws that I find (especially continuity errors).  Then, as I write, I'm constantly going back and reading and editing what I just wrote.  The downside is, it takes me longer to write the story (this one took about two months).  The upside is, when I finish writing, I'm pretty well done editing.

Give a one sentence synopsis of your work.  Cass and Kendra have survived their cross-continental trip to Kendra's employer, but their feeling of relief is short-lived as the real world intrudes again.

What other works would you compare your story to?  Wow.  I intentionally modeled Kendra equally on Friday (Robert Heinlein), Dirk Pitt (Clive Cussler) and James Bond (Ian Fleming), with some unique touches to make her more human and sympathetic.  Cass, though - she's a bit of Maureen Johnson (Robert Heinlein) in that she not only has hidden depths but grows stronger throughout the stories, more capable as she gets more acclimated to her new situation.  Throw in some humor, a la the "On The Road" movies and the Hitchhiker books, and shake well.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?  Excellent question.  This story arc has been percolating for over a year, but it all started with the opening scene in the first book - the disrupted  wedding, and the need for Cass and Ken to find out why.  From there?  It's simply grown in what I hope is a logical way.

What else might pique the reader's interest?  One tidbit.  I have liberally sprinkled references to other famous SF (and other) works throughout the books, as little homages to authors and books I have enjoyed.  I hope that my readers find them and enjoy reading them as much as I enjoyed including them.

And, I think I'll drop in just a taste of the book.

Just do what moves you feel you need to avoid my attacks,” she said, beginning to rock again. “This is called the ginga. It's the basis of just about every aspect of the art.” As she spoke she kicked at him, which he instinctively blocked.
You don't block, you evade,” she corrected. “Try something.”
He watched a few seconds then launched himself at her. Without breaking the rhythm of her moves she side-stepped his attack, coming around behind him and striking him with an elbow to his back as he passed.
The ginga allows you to attack or defend,” she clarified. “You don't absorb the attack, you allow your opponent to show an opening then you attack yourself.”
I see,” grinned Cordova, allowing his body to move to the tocque's beat. “But what if I do this?” He swept his leg out towards her. To his shock, she flipped backwards on her hands out of his reach, landed on her feet and immediately resumed her ginga.
Esquivas,” she said. “Evade. You want to try again?”
He shook his head. “Why don't you attack inst-”
Before he could finish she had started turning cartwheels, careful to stay out of his reach until she had circled behind him. From her hands, still upside-down, she pushed off towards him feet-first. He blocked the kick, but her head impacted solidly with his chest and he fell back, converting the fall into a roll. She followed with another forward flip, this time connecting with her feet and knocking him onto his back. The sequence ended with her sitting on his chest, feet pinning his arms to the ground. She grinned, gathered herself, and bounced up and over his shoulders.
Impressive,” he said, new respect in his eyes.

And now to the tags for NEXT week:

Alivia Anders,
Koco Trajevski,
Allison Bruning,
Hedonist6 (her pen name, obviously, but I'm sworn to secrecy),
Martin Schiller,

Thanks for reading!