Posts Tagged ‘the invisible city’

Sometimes you just have to drop a name.

Nebula Award winner Walter Jon Williams just listed The Invisible City as one of his recommended books from graduates of his master class workshop, Taos Toolbox. As much as this excites me, it also allows me to plug the Toolbox, which I am always happy to do.

Taos Toolbox is an advanced two-week seminar held in the mountains of New Mexico every summer. In addition to intensive tutelage from Walter and co-instructor Nancy Kress, you also get guest lectures from Walter’s friends. (This year it’s some guy named Martin.)

This is not a class for beginners; it is for serious writers with publication credits who want to move up in the field. I was there in 2008; one of my fellow students had already won a Hugo, and I roomed with a guy who won his own Hugo a couple years later. So yeah, these folks are serious.

I loved my two weeks in the mountains, and I would go back if I could. When you qualify, you should go, too. If I hadn’t, I probably wouldn’t have anything for Walter to recommend…



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When you’re in the groove, and the writing is going well, you want to write more. You may not want to write more of anything vitally important, but you still want to write. So you think of a subject to fill four hundred words and you write a blog post. This particular four hundred words is in the form of the newsletter that I’ll probably never start.

What? you say. The writing is going well? What’s up with that? Okay, that will do.

I just finished the second draft of a short story which has been on-and-off for the past few months. I had a first draft, but I knew it had a big hole in the middle even as I finished, so I put the whole thing aside for a few weeks. (I write slowly, so things tend to incubate for a while.) Finally pieces started falling into place and I returned to it, whereupon more pieces fell into place, and now I think it’s about ready for someone to see. (Not you, my reader, you deserve better than a second draft.) I am quite pleased with the alterations I made and expect great things to result.

Speaking of “great things,” The Invisible City has been out from Digital Fiction Publishing for almost a week, and is moving along quite nicely, thank you. I fully expect that, when The Secret City and The Cosmic City come out, fame, fortune, and a Hollywood premiere will quickly follow. Invisible currently available for the debut price of $0.99 (but that won’t last). Think about it: 120,000 words of swashbuckling science fiction adventure for less than a buck. You could buy the whole trilogy for the price of a venti frappuccino. (If you do buy a copy, please consider leaving a review or a rating. It’s crazy helpful.)

But if shorter works are your bag, do not despair. I have an SF story about the importance of family, “Relative Fortune,” coming out in the November Galaxy’s Edge, and a fantasy adventure, “When Gods Fall in Fire,” in the upcoming issue of Cirsova.

And of course, my gorilla-centric unnamed novel is poking along. I still hope to finish it by the end of the year.

So that’s my life in a nutshell, with the emphasis on “nutty.” And it’s almost four hundred words…


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It’s here! The Invisible City has now officially been published by Digital Fiction Publishing! This is my first traditionally-published book, and for a limited time it’s available for 99 cents! The redesigned cover is below.

The Invisible City KINDLE COVER OCT4

The Invisible City is the story of Charles Clee, a volunteer infantry officer in the hellish trenches of France in 1915, who disobeys orders to investigate what he thinks is an enemy trap. He’s right–but he also stumbles on an illegal time travel expedition from the 863rd century, and the only way to escape the Germans is to use the time machine, which traps him hundreds of thousands of years in the future!

Here he finds no Utopia, but a world seized by the same kinds of murderous hate he left behind, except that this Earth has been overrun by aliens and populated by laboratory-recreated versions all of the most dangerous animals of history, not to mention savage killers all too new to him.

Clee falls in love, only to have her kidnapped by one of the world’s most powerful men. In his quest to save her, he finds that there may still be a working time machine that could take him home. Now he must choose–will he stay with the world that needs him, or return to the world where he belongs?

The second and third volumes, The Secret City and The Cosmic City, will be available soon. You’re going to want to read them as soon as they come out, so I recommend you read The Invisible City now!


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In celebration of the upcoming release of The Killing Scar , third book in the Nemesis series (available at the special pre-order price), the first book, The Choking Rain, is now available for free on Amazon and other platforms!

February, 1932: The city of Los Angeles is anticipating a huge boost to its depression-ravaged economy from the upcoming Summer Olympics. But when a horrifying and unexplained wave of deaths sweeps the city, the incipient panic could ruin everything. An ex-fighter pilot uncovers an international terror plot which threatens not only the city and the Games, but the peace of the entire world. He will throw everything he has into the fight–and victory, if it comes, will demand a terrible price: Before it is done, a life will be lost, and a legend will be born.

And if your tastes run more to the out-of-this-world, The Invisible City, first in the Stolen Future trilogy, is also free. A 20th-century man is hurled into the distant future, where he is considered nothing more than an ignorant barbarian to be hunted and killed. If he survives, he may save the world–but will he choose the world of his past, or of his future?



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Who wants to wait until Black Friday? And who wants a sale that only lasts one day? (Hint: the answer to both these questions is, “Not me.”)

Therefore, on the theory that it’s no good selling something if you can’t give your friends a good deal, starting tomorrow, November 23, and running all the way to December 31, all novels in my electronic catalog are being reduced by 25%!*

You want time-traveling adventure on a far-future Earth where aliens rule mankind and recreated dinosaurs roam deserted cities? We got that.

You want to go back to the 1930s, where mysterious dangers hide behind every door and globe-trotting heroes fight the forces of evil and tyranny? We got that.

You want to visit a fantastical (and hysterical) medieval land where an exiled samurai and an untrustworthy card shark turn out to be long-lost brothers, battling fashion-obsessed Valkyries and the Pirate Brother’ood while arguing over whose fault it was they got kicked out of another tavern? We got that, too!

Act now, because prices like this do not come along every day!**


*Except for The Invisible City, because it’s already free!

**Every year, yes. Every day, no.

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Well, thank you for your interest! Somehow (and I honestly don’t know how), I pushed along at a respectable clip this week. I am now at 46,510, almost 6700 words ahead of last week. I should come in at 60,000 words by August 12, right on schedule. Woohoo! Right?

Well, yes and no. You never thought it would be that easy. I can see now that this book is not going to come in at 60,000 words. It’s probably going to run around 65,000 words. (Don’t you love how we authors can so blithely throw around estimates in the thousands of words? Don’t you wonder how we do that? So do we.) Fortunately, that only means about a week’s extra work (even including fixing a major problem I recently discovered), so if I edit quickly, I can stick to my publishing schedule. It also means, though, that I have to put some thought into a cover… I’m thinking of doing something classic, like the less lurid of the old Black Mask and Dime Detective covers. We’ll see.

In the meantime, by the time you read this, there will be only 24 hours left in the Smashwords July sale, which means you have hardly any time left to pick up The Invisible City for free, and all of my other books at a steep discount. This is your last chance to save some money on quality fiction, and time is running out…


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The storm of events that seems determined to sabotage The Experiment has continued–which is a non-self-accusatory way of saying that progress on the novel this week was almost non-existent. I am at 39,831 words, which is about 2,000 words ahead of last week (as opposed to the planned 6,000). The culprit this week, as you might have noticed, is Comic-Con.

We hadn’t been for several years, but when The Better Half managed to snag tickets (no mean feat), we decided we really had to go. So we went down to San Diego on Thursday morning. This meant, for the purposes of this post, that Thursday was a non-writing day; since I knew there would be no chance to do anything useful, I didn’t even bring the laptop. But it also meant that we had to pack on Wednesday, so that night was lost, too (as was Tuesday, for other pre-event reasons). Ergo, the book was pushed back essentially another week.

I don’t blame Comic-con for this; I was the one who agreed to go, after all. And I thought it might present a marketing opportunity for The Invisible City, currently available for free on Smashwords (hint, hint). Comic-con has rules about these things, however, so our efforts were constrained. (All credit to The Better Half, though, who is far better at getting people to take promotional postcards from strangers than I am. Of course, she’s better-looking, so that helps.)

Comic-con itself was pretty much what I expected, crowded and full of long lines. I was surprised to see how it’s spilled out beyond the confines of the Convention Center; there were some interesting things that you could get into even if you weren’t a member. I had my first taste of VR over the weekend, for example. It needs work, but it’s intriguing.

And it’s one of the few places you can wear a kilt and not be stared at. TBH is a rabid Outlander fan, and I volunteered to attend the panel she wanted to see, in a kilt. This meant wearing the kilt all day. They really are quite comfortable. I might incorporate it into my convention persona.

Okay, yes, there are pictures.


This week there’s no Comic-con, and no excuses! Full speed ahead! Six thousand words or bust! We have a book to write.


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