Book Spotlight – The Valor: Military Science Fiction Bundle #Scifi

For more info – check out this link – and the bundle is only available for a limited time.

https://storybundle.com/blog/valormilitarysciencefictionbundle/

Military SF Bundle ad 1920x600.png

Nine novels and an amazing short story collection make this a fantastic military science fiction bundle.

Plus, another bonus: Our charity, AbleGamers, helps people with disabilities enjoy the imaginary worlds of video games all year, as well as in the holidays. The organization provides one-on-one assistance to help people with a variety of disabilities join the lively interactive world of gaming, easing the social isolation that being disabled can bring.

Can’t think of a better cause to help out.

So here’s what you can do: buy the bundle for yourself or your friends who love military science fiction stories, then toss in a few bucks for AbleGamers. Helping others while getting some top science fiction reading. It doesn’t get any better than that.

Also, the holidays are coming up and you can give this as a gift.

And remember, this bundle won’t last very long. Grab this bundle today and toss in a little extra for AbleGamers. You’ll make someone’s life a little brighter, and have hours of wonderful science fiction reading going into the holidays. – Dean Wesley Smith

For StoryBundle, you decide what price you want to pay. For $5 (or more, if you’re feeling generous), you’ll get the basic bundle of four books in any ebook format—WORLDWIDE.

  • Perihelion by Tami Veldura
  • Battlenaut Crucible by Robert Jeschonek
  • Valor by Fiction River
  • Can’t Shoot Straight Gang Returns by Blaze Ward

If you pay at least the bonus price of just $15, you get all four of the regular books, plus SIX more!

  • Stealing From Pirates by Stefon Mears
  • Trial Under Fire – A BattleTech Novel by Loren L. Coleman
  • Skirmishes: A Diving Novel by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
  • Guilt in Innocence by Keith R.A. DeCandido
  • Life of a Dream by Dean Wesley Smith
  • Invincible by David Bruns

This bundle is available only for a limited time via http://www.storybundle.com. It allows easy reading on computers, smartphones, and tablets as well as Kindle and other ereaders via file transfer, email, and other methods. You get multiple DRM-free formats (.epub and .mobi) for all books!

 

A Day in the Life of Gustavo Bondoni – Sci-Fi Author/Meet an Author

Welcome to a day in the life of Gustavo Bondoni

Please give us a brief outline of who you are. I’m a novelist and short story writer from Argentina… or at least that is what I am by inclination.  By training, I’m an engineer with an MBA who has always worked on the commercial side (sales and marketing) of companies varying from tiny startups to massive Fortune 100 enterprises.

My passion for writing came about because I love to read.  And my selection of genre came about because Asimov and Robert Asprin and Douglas Adams were the men on the racks of my local bookstore when I was twelve and began to read adult fiction.  With names like that, how can one not be hooked?

As an interesting aside this was the eighties, and I still have the battered copy of Heroes in Hell I bought at Waldenbooks way back then.  I assume it’s the only copy in Argentina.

You’re a writer – how is this reflected in your typical day? I’m a writer, and it basically consumes my day, even when I’m not writing.  On the practical side, I’ll be obsessively checking my email for acceptances (or rejections, sadly), contracts, edits, or just about any other communication with the publishing world.

On a more interesting note, I’ll always be plotting the story or book in progress, or cooking up ideas for new ones.  That doesn’t change just because I might be working on something else.

Do you have a family? What do they think of your job? Do they assist you? I have a family.  My wife and I live with four children: two that are hers from another marriage and two baby daughters of our own (2 years old and one month old as I type, respectively).  The older kids seem more interested in their tablets than in books, but my wife is amazingly supportive… although she does sometimes get annoyed at my habit of not even realizing that people are talking to me when I’m writing.

How do you fit in ‘real life’? What in the world is real life?  Actually, I try to live a normal existence.  Unless I tell them, most people can’t even tell I’m a writer.  The truth is that I can fit my target wordcount (around 1500 words a day) into the slots between other tasks.

Do you have a particular process? The only process I really swear to is to write every weekday, and to try to get 1500 words in.  Anything else is a bonus.  Some people like to outline… I prefer to find out what my characters are going to do as they do it.

Are you very organised? I try to be.  Life has a way of biting you… and also, my wife is the Mistress of Chaos…

What is your ideal working environment? My ideal working environment would be an office with a closed door.  But this is sadly not possible at home… and right now, my corporate job is also home-based.  But one can dream!

What do you eat for breakfast? Tea with lemon and a type of cracker that you can only buy in Argentina called cerealitas.  Unlike most crackers, these actually taste good and are therefore probably bad for me.

Would you recommend your chosen craft to those interested in doing it? Wow. Loaded question.  It’s very difficult to make a living from writing fiction.  Anyone looking to write for that reason would likely be better served by becoming a journalist.  However, I have found no satisfaction greater than receiving an email confirming that something you invented was judged good enough by an editor you’ve never met to be shared with others and paid for. That rush is indescribable.  So yeah, on balance, I’d say everyone should give it a try.

Links/samples/etc.

Site: www.gustavobondoni.com

Twitter: @gbondoni

Most popular novel: Siege

Dirty Dozen Character Interviews – Kairi Johnson #Sci-fi #Bundle

CHARACTER NAME Kairi Johnson

 

  • Tell us a little about yourself.

Unfortunately, I’m an orphan. I don’t know anything about my family—and I really wish I did!  I’m also a student at the University of Colorado where I have an awesome boyfriend, Josh and my best friend Dakota.

  • Tell us why you’re embarking on this adventure?

My adventure all started when I went with Josh on a spring break road trip to Padre Island, TX. I actually found …an engagement ring when I was packing the car! But it really went downhill from there when we ran into a tornado and then I got stranded by the side of the road. So, as for the ‘why’ I basically had to, I had to figure out what was going on so I could save myself and my friends.

  • Do you have a moral code? If so what might it be

I definitely have a moral code. Since I don’t have a family, my friends are precious to me. I would do anything, and I do mean anything, to keep them safe.

  • Would you kill for those you love?

Definitely.

  • Would you die for those you love?

Definitely.

  • Who is your greatest friend?

My greatest friend is Dakota, she’s my sister from another mister. We met in the foster care system and I’d do anything for her.

  • How do you define ‘heroism?’

Heroism is showing up and standing up to difficulty even when you don’t understand what’s going on or you’re not sure you can succeed.

  • Tell us about your family?

I wish I knew.

  • What is your greatest skill/asset

I keep on going no matter what! Is that stubbornness? I guess it is.

I’m starting to get an inkling, however, that I might have a special power which might turn out to be my greatest skill/asset.

  • What is your greatest weakness (we won’t tell).

I am much more insecure than I seem. I’m also very lonely. I get envious of other people who have families.

  • How would you describe yourself?

I would describe myself to others as fiercely loyal and tough. With no family I’ve had to be tough and depend on myself.

  • How do you think others see you?

I think others see me as a regular woman, but they’re wrong. Josh says I’m pretty…

For the author

Books in which this character appears: Temporal Dreams

Links, short author bio…

Links

Temporal Dreams on Amazon

This also features in Spring Surprise Bundle

Spring Surprise on Bundle Rabbit

Spring Surprise – Universal Link

Lesley L. Smith has published seven science fiction novels including Temporal Dreams, The Quantum Cop, A Jack By Any Other Name, and Conservation of Luck.

Her short science fiction has been published in several venues including “Analog Science Fiction and Fact” and “Daily Science Fiction.” She is an active member of the Science Fiction/Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) and Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers (RMFW).

She is also a founder and editor of the speculative fiction ezine Electric Spec (http://www.electricspec.com). For more information, please see http://www.lesleylsmith.com.

Swift Six Author Interview – Barbara G. Tarn – Fantasy Secondary Worlds Bundle #Fantasy #Specfic

 

Name: Barbara G.Tarn

What attracts you to the genre in which you write?

It’s speculative fiction! I can make up stuff! Or so I thought when I started writing. I still write more fantasy than sci-fi because historical research is easier for me than science and technology…

What piece of writing advice do you wish you’d known when you started your writing adventures?

I think I unknowingly followed most of Heinlein’s Rules… I wrote. I finished what I wrote. I moved on. Problem was putting it out there. In the 20th century and legacy publishing world. Sigh.

If you could have dinner with any famous person or character who would you choose?

Since I’m currently mad with Da Muse who posts pictures of snow in the middle of the hated long hot summer, I’d go back to the previous Muse who lasted some 15 years anyway (but then, they say he’s immortal, LOL)… that would be Keanu Reeves!

Who has been the greatest influence on your own work?

When I grow up I wanna be Dean Wesley Smith. Or Kristine Katryn Rusch. Or both. For the work ethic, mostly, although I have my own! 😉 Stylistically, dunno. I have found my own voice long ago. Even the English voice is now quite established and I don’t know where I got it from.

Do you think the e-book revolution will do away with print?

I doubt it. Probably not. And audio books will rise in the new illiteracy. I’d understand visually impaired, but other people listening to a story? Not for me. I still prefer paper for non-fiction and comics and graphic novels. But fiction? E-book are just fine!

Which 3 books would you take to a desert island and why?

My Kindle Keyboard has a long lasting battery! Besides, I’m afraid I’d use any paper available to write or draw (if I have a pen or pencil, that is). Of course, if it’s a shipwreck, none of this would be possible. And if it’s a willing vacation… it’s even more impossible. You’ll never see me on a desert island willingly! 🙂

Author bio and book synopsis

Please introduce yourself (250 words or so):

Barbara G.Tarn had an intense life in the Middle Ages that stuck to her through the centuries. She prefers swords to guns, long gowns to mini-skirts, and even though she buried the warrior woman, she deplores the death of knights in shining chainmail. She likes to think her condo apartment is a medieval castle, unfortunately lacking a dungeon to throw noisy neighbors and naughty colleagues in. Also known as the Lady with the Unicorns, these days she prefers to add a touch of fantasy to all her stories, past and present – when she’s not wandering on her fantasy world of Silvery Earth or in her Star Minds futuristic universe.

She’s a writer, sometimes artist, mostly a world-creator and story-teller. Two of her stories received an Honorable Mention at the Writers of the Future contest. She writes, draws, ignores her day job and blogs at: http://creativebarbwire.wordpress.com.

She can now be found on Patreon, where you can pledge as little as 1$ a month to read exclusive content and sustain her and other creators in their endeavors.

Check her Vimeo channel for book trailers and other funny stuff.

 

Tell us about your book(s) – title, genre etc (short) (I’ll put both bundles here, and then send a Book Spotlight for both)

The Path of Water (Quests Book 1) also included in the Fantasy Secondary Worlds Bundle with 11 other fantasy novels

Hinrik survives the battle outside the walls of Moriana, battered and hurt. He drags himself to the River Ondan to put an end to his misery.

But it’s just the beginning of a new life of discoveries about himself and the world, a quest for his true calling in life. He is a half-blood and must learn what it means with the help of Bellinda the healer and Keneith the magic user.

The warrior, the healer and the magic user are all outsiders or outcasts looking for a place to call home in a hostile world, away from the aggressively expanding Varian and Blackmore Kingdoms.

A story of the northern kingdoms of Silvery Earth with magic and pain, loss and rebirth.

Star Minds Next Generation also included in the Sci-fi July Fever Fun with 10 other sci-fi novels

A sequel to Star Minds – the Trilogy, it’s the story of Shan-leo, Ker-ris’s son, now no longer an imperial prince.
Raised as imperial prince, Shan-leo doesn’t miss his former status. At twenty-two, he gets to define his destiny without being forced on a path traced by his family. Following his love for calligraphy, he discovers a black market of stolen manuscripts, which starts the adventure of a lifetime.
Aristocratic adventurer on a starship called “outlaw”. The next generation of Star Minds is out in the galaxy.

Links

Social media

blog: http://creativebarbwire.wordpress.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BarbaraGTarn

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4717133.Barbara_G_Tarn

Author Central http://www.amazon.com/Barbara-G.Tarn/e/B0050P0R2G

Where to find everything: www.unicornproductionsbook.com

Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/BarbaraGTarn

Vimeo (book trailers): https://vimeo.com/user65901088

SFF Bundles Galore on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sff4bundles

 

Book Spotlight – The Path of Water/Secondary Worlds Fantasy Bundle

Secondary Worlds Bundle

Title: The Path of Water (Quests Book 1)

Author: Barbara G.Tarn

Genre: fantasy

Main character description (short).

Hinrik is a warrior and a half-blood trying to find his place in the world. Interview wih Hinrik and Bellinda on author’s blog.

Synopsis:

Hinrik survives the battle outside the walls of Moriana, battered and hurt. He drags himself to the River Ondan to put an end to his misery.

But it’s just the beginning of a new life of discoveries about himself and the world, a quest for his true calling in life. He is a half-blood and must learn what it means with the help of Bellinda the healer and Keneith the magic user.

The warrior, the healer and the magic user are all outsiders or outcasts looking for a place to call home in a hostile world, away from the aggressively expanding Varian and Blackmore Kingdoms.

A story of the northern kingdoms of Silvery Earth with magic and pain, loss and rebirth.

 

Brief Excerpt 250 words:

Hinrik’s eyes widened in shock. This couldn’t be. He was already dead and the underworld was underwater.

The man’s hand on his chest calmed his heartbeat. He looked sorrowful now.

“You are my son, Hinrik. And you are badly hurt. But the kingmaker is coming this way and he is with an excellent healer, she will help you.”

Hinrik closed his mouth and gulped. He still couldn’t believe all this was happening underwater. His mother had told him his father was a magical being, but he wasn’t expecting this! She’d been blamed all of her life for having a son outside of marriage and now, twenty-five years later, this… stranger walked, no swam up to him and told him he was his father!

“You are half-Waiora, Hinrik, that’s why water heals you. But what you’ve been through needs more healing power, and only the Genn can give you that. Go back to the surface, the kingmaker is making camp on the river shore with his friends, you will find him easily and they will help you.”

“I don’t want anybody’s help!” Hinrik’s scream was lost underwater. He didn’t want anybody to see him right now. He was naked, bruised and hurt. He wasn’t going to go back to the surface and meet people.

His father hugged him and gently rocked him as he burst into sobs. His tears were lost in the water and he was too weak to free himself from the unwanted embrace.

 

Why should readers buy this book (50 words max)?

A personal, non-heroic quest to find one’s place in the world in the company of other “different” people.

 

http://www.unicornproductionsbooks.com/books/the-path-of-water-quests-book-1/

is also in Quests Volume one http://www.unicornproductionsbooks.com/books/quests-volume-one-the-paths-of-water-and-air/

and the First Glimpse of Secondary Fantasy World bundle along with 11 other authors.

 

Title: Star Minds Next Generation

Author: Barbara G.Tarn

Genre: science fantasy

Main character description (short).

Shan-leo Shermac is the descendant of the last emperor, but he’s never going to sit on his grandfather’s throne. He’s not interested.

Synopsis:

A sequel to Star Minds – the Trilogy, it’s the story of Shan-leo, Ker-ris’s son, now no longer an imperial prince.
Raised as imperial prince, Shan-leo doesn’t miss his former status. At twenty-two, he gets to define his destiny without being forced on a path traced by his family. Following his love for calligraphy, he discovers a black market of stolen manuscripts, which starts the adventure of a lifetime.
Aristocratic adventurer on a starship called “outlaw”. The next generation of Star Minds is out in the galaxy.

Brief Excerpt 250 words:

Shan-leo got out of bed, showered and dressed, grabbing his bandanna. He went downstairs and found his father and uncle in the living room, seated at the breakfast table side by side as usual.

Uncle Kol-ian saw him first and greeted him. “Good morning, birthday boy!”

“Good morning,” he answered as his father rose to give him a bear hug.

“Already twenty-two… where did time go?” he whispered in Shan-leo’s ear.

“You mean the past twelve years went even faster than the previous ten?” Shan-leo teased, giving the bandanna to uncle Kol-ian who wrapped it around his nephew’s arm with a smile. Shan-leo knew his father disapproved of his showing off the bionic arm – especially when he had on a tank top like today – but Uncle Kol-ian was very supportive, having had prosthetics himself.

“Shan-leo…” his father chided.

Shan-leo smiled at him. It wasn’t his fault if he’d been mind-controlled for all the time he’d been married to Shan-leo’s late mother and had missed most of his son’s childhood.

“I love you anyway, Father.” He sat with them to eat breakfast. “Even if you want to hide my beautiful prosthetic! Why don’t you ever suggest Uncle Kol-ian cover the scars on his back with synthetic skin?”

“Your uncle doesn’t go around bare-chested to show off his scars!” his father protested while Kol-ian guffawed.

 

Why should readers buy this book (50 words max)?

If you loved the Trilogy and the Snippets or if you’re new to the Star Minds universe, you will enjoy this wandering prince’s adventures in space.

.

 

 

Swift Six Character Interview – Lloyd Tenay

Character Name:  Lloyd Tenay

Which book/world do you live in?

I live in The Shattered States series, which is named after the supposed world.  Technically, it’s Earth, but one of those alternate ones that authors love to play with.  This one is where the United States has been walled off and blockaded from the rest of the world.  Nobody is allowed to leave and some putz decided to nuke Washington D.C., so chaos just took over.  You get some warlords and various towns that have carved out a niche, but most of the place is a violent dump with very few laws.  Guess it doesn’t sound that different than reality.  We do have more cannibalism here though.

What are your greatest strengths and weaknesses?

I look forward to working with your company . . . Wait . . . Think I got mixed up here.  Well, being a former serial killer, most of my strengths deal with murder.  I say former because the job market has become saturated since the collapse.  Now I consider myself a purveyor of death and, if you make friends with me, hugs.  Have I answered the first part of the question?  Okay then my greatest strength is that I’m very good at thinking on my feet and finding unique ways out of situations.  Cassidy is the planning type while I’m more of a free spirit.

Greatest weakness is supposedly that I don’t know when to shut up.  I’m also easily distracted by knives, women, and food.  Always itching for a fight and I have a habit of looking for challenges that could get me killed.  Not a fan of guns, which puts me at a disadvantage, but I have a paintball gun to cover that.  Wow, I probably should have died a long time ago.  Good thing I’m a protagonist or I’d be screwed.

Name three important people/creatures/institutions in your world (such as lovers, pets, government institutions, leaders, gods etc).

Not sure about institutions.  Been in a few over the years and it’s always filled with people that want to talk about my problems.  They claim to be doctors, but they don’t even have a stethoscope and I can read their handwriting.  So, my three important things are:

  1. Cassidy who is my partner and the one that busted me out of prison. She’s like the little sister I never had.  I’m not saying that because I just saw that she bought a few more tasers.
  2. I kind of have a girlfriend, which is the big change since our first adventure. Katie is tough, smart, unpredictable, and energetic.  She’s also a warlord up in Illinois, which means we also have a business relationship. Did I mention she killed a man for getting her tea wrong?  So sexy.
  3. My machete has my name on it, but I’m going with my t-shirt collection. I have so many graphic shirts that I’m surprised they can fit in the jeep.  Seriously, we have so much in that thing and it never causes a problem.  I get the feeling that the laws of physics don’t really matter to the guy in charge.

What does ‘heroism’ mean to you?

That will certainly get you killed out here.  Heroes jump into the fray for the greater good and to save the innocent.  There’s a sense of sacrifice for those true hero types.  I want to say that courage is a big part of it too.  All I really know is that these types tend to get praise and can’t possibly look at someone suffering and go about their lives. Good for them, but that’s not my way.  I guess I can respect the desire to help others and I do get the urge at times.  Just because I’m a fun-loving murderer doesn’t mean I can’t like people and want to help them.  Typically with a lot of slashing and stabbing.

What do you think of your ‘creator’?

He’s a sadistic, horrible monster that comes up with some of the most disturbing challenges for us.  I mean, do you know what he did to me in Wyoming during Crossing Bedlam?  At least he made up for it in Chasing Bedlam, but I still have nightmares about that spoiler heavy section.  On a more personal note, the guy needs to get some sun and lay off the fast food.  Seriously, I think Captain Ahab is going to start looking for him if he doesn’t get his act together.

Do your worst to me, author!  I die and the series ends!  I am immortal-ish!

Give us your favourite piece of advice:

“If you can, be the craziest bastard in the room.  If you can’t do that then make friends with the craziest bastard in the room.”

Also:  “Never argue over pizza toppings. Just get half-and-half.”

 

Links to book

Chasing Bedlam

Horrible Creator’s author page Charles E Yallowitz – author page

Review – Wind from the Abyss – #Fantasy #Scifi Janet Morris

Review

5 stars

Wind from the Abyss – Book 3 of the Silistra Quartet – Janet Morris

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Wind-Abyss-Silistra-Quartet-Book-ebook/dp/B01M5HSQX2/

The third book of the Silistra series is, perhaps, the most passionate, the most evocative and the most enthralling. This is a book about power, amongst many other things. The power of biology, of technology and the problems it can bring, the power over another, and the power over oneself.  Silistra is a supremely crafted world, apart from ours but terrifyingly familiar in many ways. It is, a could be – a might be, and the denizens thereupon are reflections of humanity.

Estri – our protagonist – is a shadow of what she was, and beholden to a man who is demigod, ruler and profit. He shapes his world and brooks no competition or threat. Estri, now little more than a slave, must find herself, and her past and future and use them to save herself and her world. Does she do it? You’ll have to read to find out. I’ll just say it’s a long and difficult journey, filled with sacrifice.

You’ll quickly be entranced by the world and its characters, and although it helps to have read the earlier books, even without that it’s a tumultuous journey. This is not for the faint of heart, nor those who want an ‘easy’ read. It’s cerebral, lyrical and evocative. You have been warned.

Author Interview 123 – Linda Acaster

torc-trilogy-fan-300x223-100dpi

Welcome to Linda Acaster

Where are you from and where do you live now? My formative years were in Kingston-upon-Hull – 2017 City of Culture, no less – and I now live 20 miles away on the Yorkshire coast, a gentle five minute stroll from a quiet promenade and views over Bridlington Bay to the white chalk cliffs of Flamborough Head. Aah, breathe in the salt air and re-laaax.

Please tell us a little about your writing. I’m a multi-genre writer, always have been. I started my career writing short fiction for any magazine that would have my work, from the national women’s magazines that paid me money to the Sci-Fi/Fantasy and Crime outlets that paid in printed copies. Although I now write mostly longer works, the multi-genre aspect has carried through, first to mainstream published historical novels and then to my indie-published trilogy and novellas. I like the scope.

Where do you find inspiration? Everywhere. Since childhood I’ve been interested in the day-to-day lives of the Native North Americans of the upper plains, and for several years was part of a living-history group. Beneath The Shining Mountains came from that experience, that and around 400 research books. The Paintings came from a single line in an email exchange with an artist friend.

Are your characters based on real people? Never. Mostly they are based on aspects of myself, which to a reader will sound highly egotistical, but that isn’t how it works. I write very close in to my story via the viewpoint character’s senses. I become them via an emotional bridge – and lots of pre-planning of character motivation and fears.

Have you ever used a person you don’t/didn’t like as a character then killed them off?I’ve met a person I didn’t like – maybe because overtly and very loudly she ridiculed my accent. Oooh, I can be nasty in print. Not that I hold grudges, you understand. Who, me?

Research can be important in world-building, how much do you need to do for your books? I need masses, and of different types for different books. Research for The Paintings was 17 open tabs on my internet browser as I wrote. The Torc of Moonlight trilogy meant poring over history books and Ordnance Survey maps, then visiting the chosen locales to get a physical feel for them, knitting the place + history into the fictional premise, and then writing. The books are accurate enough to be used as walking guides to the modern locales, with the history hovering overhead. And no, I do not intend to take on such a complicated project again!

Is there a message conveyed within your writing?  Do you feel this is important in a book? Most of my fiction has a theme, but I believe that every novel, and most short fiction, should convey some sort of information that often the reader isn’t aware of, alongside a pacy story. No one wants to be preached to. It’s one of those things that should rise quietly to the surface but stay once the reading is over. If it doesn’t I’ve failed to connect.

Sort these into order of importance: Great characters; great world-building; solid plot; technically perfect. Can you explain why you chose this order? (Yes I know they all are important…)

Joint 1st: great characters & world-building – one simply can’t exist without the other or the entire edifice is out of balance and cracks will appear.

Joint 2nd: solid plot & technically ‘perfect’ because it is a symbiotic relationship, even if perfection is in the eye of the beholder. A plot can be as solid as granite, but if it is conveyed with the finesse of shovelling pig-muck, no amount of world-building or fully-formed characters are going to render the story readable.

In what formats are your books available? (E-books, print, large print audio) Are you intending to expand these and if not, what is the reason? All my titles are available as ebooks via the major online retailers, and e-readers take care of large print. Beneath The Shining Mountains, my writers’ guide Reading A Writers’ Mind – Exploring Short Fiction, and the first two books in the Torc of Moonlight trilogy are also available in print. I’m still working on the third, but it won’t be long in following. Audio is a whole new world I still have to get to grips with.

Do you self-edit? If so why is that the case? Do you believe a book suffers without being professionally edited? I do self-edit, but I’ve been a reader for a London literary agency so feel I have some background experience. I continuously edit throughout the writing process (there is no quick & dirty draft), and again as a whole when it’s completed. Then the text goes through the automated Pro-Writing Aid which lists how many times x word has been used, queries sentence structure, punctuation, etc. Most of the items it flags I’ve specified for a purpose, but it does catch me out and I’m grateful for that. Then it goes to beta readers who are other writers, who look at the typescript with a critical human eye. I believe there is no such thing as a novel that falls direct from mind to page as publishable with any degree of integrity. A genius need not apply.

Do you think indie/self-published authors are viewed differently to traditionally published authors? Most readers, and just about all digital readers, don’t care. I read lots of indie published fiction and have only wasted my time twice in the last year, which is about the same percentage as with mainstream published paperbacks. Readers expect a “good read” in a format in which they can immerse themselves. I don’t touch fiction using spaced block paragraphing. White space is important to the ebb and flow of a work’s rhythm. Having it inserted wrecks the pacing.

What are your opinions about authors commenting on reviews? How important are reviews? Reviews are very important, and I always check on a handful when contemplating purchasing a book by an author I haven’t previously read. Then I ‘Read Inside’, and I make my decision. It isn’t usually the cost in money that is being weighed, but the cost in time. Who wants to get halfway through a novel and find the story has turned into limp lettuce? I’ve had my Native American novel lambasted because it was a novel and not a non-fiction book. Er, pardon? It annoys me that the particular review pulled down my ratings, but I’d never comment as I consider such troll-bait.

What are your views on authors reviewing other authors? Oh for goodness sake, it’s been done since books were bound. Amazon got itself into a pickle over this, but how can an author avoid it? Never review? Should hairdressers not review hair products? That’s ridiculous. I read, full-stop. Most authors are prolific readers, that’s why they’re writers.

What three pieces of advice would you give to new writers?

* Learn your craft.

* Pay for editing of a polished work at least once, and learn from it.

* Don’t indie publish everything you write, and never throw anything away. It will come in useful, even if for inspiration, further along your career.

Thanks for asking me along, I’ve enjoyed the challenge. If anyone wants to ask questions I’ll be lurking around the Comments list. See you there!

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Book links, website/blog and author links:

Amazon (worldwide): http://Author.to/LindaAcaster

Nook:  http://bit.ly/BN-LAcaster

Kobo: http://bit.ly/Kobo-LAcaster

iBooks:  http://bit.ly/iBkst-LAcaster

Website:  http://www.lindaacaster.com

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/lindaacasterUK

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/LindaAcaster   @Linda Acaster

YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_Ra2dqyf-xlsqK4nJjF4fw

 

Wind from the Abyss – Sci Fi – Book Spotlight

This Author’s Cut Edition is revised and expanded by the author and presented in a format designed to enhance your reading experience with larger, easy-to-read print, more generous margins, and covers designed for these premium editions.

Wind from the Abyss is the third volume in Janet Morris’ classic Silistra Quartet, continuing one woman’s quest for self-realization in a distant tomorrow. Aristocrat. Outcast. Picara. Slave. Ruler …. She is descended from the masters of the universe. To hold her he challenges the gods themselves.

Praise for Janet Morris’ Silistra Quartet: “The amazing and erotic adventures of the most beautiful courtesan in tomorrow’s universe.” — Fred Pohl

“Engrossing characters in a marvelous adventure.” — Charles N. Brown, Locus Magazine.

“The best single example of prostitution used in fantasy is Janet Morris’ Silsitra series.” — Anne K. Kahler, The Picara: From Hera to Fantasy Heroine.

Wind from the Abyss starts with this . . . Author’s Note – Since, at the beginning of this tale, I did not recollect myself nor retain even the slightest glimmer of such understanding as would have led me to an awareness of the significance of the various occurrences that transpired at the Lake of Horns then, I am adding this preface, though it was no part of my initial conception, that the meaningfulness of the events described by “Khys’ Estri” (as I have come to think of the shadow-self I was while the dharen held my skills and memory in abeyance) not be witheld from you as they were from me. I knew myself not: I was Estri because the girl Carth supposedly found wandering in the forest stripped of comprehension and identity chose that name. There, perhaps, lies the greatest irony of all, that I named myself anew after Estri Hadrath diet Estrazi, who in reality I had once been. And perhaps it is not irony at all, but an expression of Khys’ humor, an implicit dissertation by him who structured my experiences, my very thoughts, for nearly two years, until his audacity drove him to bring together once more Sereth crill Tyris, past-Slayer, then the outlawed Ebvrasea, then arrar to the dharen himself; Chayin rendi Inekte, cahndor of Nemar, co-cahndor of the Taken Lands, chosen so of Tar-Kesa, and at that time Khys’ puppet-vassal; and myself, former Well-Keepress, tiask of Nemar, and lastly becoming the chaldless outlaw who had come to judgment and endured ongoing retribution at the dharen’s hands. To test his hesting, his power over owkahen, the time-coming-to-be, did Khys put us together, all three, in his Day-Keeper’s city — and from that moment onward, the Weathers of Life became fixed: siphoned into a singular future; sealed tight as a dead god in his mausoleum, whose every move brought him closer to the sum total, obliteration. So did the dharen Khys bespeak it, himself. . . .

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Review – The Forty Minute War – Sci-fi/Thriller

The Forty Minute War

Janet and Chris Morris.

http://www.amazon.com/FORTY-MINUTE-WAR-Janet-Morris-ebook/dp/B016QNZV26/

 

Although first written in the mid 1980s, and set during the height of the Cold War the Forty Minute War could be set anytime from the advent of the atomic bomb to the present day.  The enemies may have changed but warfare, and its terrible consequences has not. Right from the get-go the action is intense, enthralling, but at the same time heart breaking. This is a story of human folly, human stubbornness, and human desperation. It’s also a story of human courage. Expect a high death count, expect tears and disbelief, expect emotion. The reader quickly gets attached to the characters – especially Marc and Chris, but also Marc’s ops team. They are all skilled in the field but also flawed – they are above all people desperately trying to right a wrong and save what remains of the world even though they know it will likely mean their death.  I admit I shed more than one tear during the read and ended up really wanting to know what happened next. Without wanting to give any spoilers the ending is a surprise but leave questions unanswered. Questions such as if not then, when is it going to happen?

As usual Janet and Chris Morris create a world that is so real, and characters which become friends (or enemies).  Well researched and superbly written the novel takes the reader to the darkest place of the human soul, and then back again with a frighteningly believable plot. There are elements of dark humour, of love against impossible odds, of daring to hope when hope is gone. Aside from being a breath taking adventure it’s a story about the unquenchable human spirit to survive.

Most definitely 5 stars – I couldn’t put this down.