Archive for the ‘Promotion’ Category

Short Fiction Wednesday! My Sweet Andromache

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Welcome to the fourth week of Short Fiction Wednesday, in which I feature the first 1.5-2k of a story from my ebook collection Night Bird Soaring and Other Stories, which features 17 different reprint selections ranging from fantasy to horror to alternate history. If you enjoy what you read here, you can purchase the full collection at Amazon or B&N for $2.99.

Night Bird Soaring and Other StoriesWith this week’s selection, we move back to science fiction. “My Sweet Andromache” is a time travel love story inspired by The Iliad, and a particularly fascinating class on Greek history I took in college. Nikias is an Observational Historian, sent back in time to observe history first hand, and he’s been sent back to find out the truth about the Trojan War and the collapse of the Bronze Age in the Aegean. To his surprise, some of the characters from Homer’s poems do indeed exist as real people. He secures employment with Hector, a nobleman known for his skills with breaking horses, but when Nikias falls in love with his wife Andromache, history could start unraveling….

My Sweet Andromache

I kissed Andromache gently on the forehead, letting my lips linger for a moment as I filled my nose with the smell of oil, sweat, and lilies. I didn’t want to leave. But Hector would return soon from the council meeting in the city and only a fool wished to test the man’s legendary brutality with a sword.

Out the door and over the side of the wooden deck I went, lowering myself to the top of the garden’s stone wall. I dropped behind a partition of crisp evergreen bushes growing along the outside and walked crouched until I came to the front of the house. Crickets hummed in the hot summer evening and the air smelled of jasmine and tasted of sea salt.
At the end of the hedgerow, I checked for slaves then stepped out and headed for the barn.

“The troublemaker emerges at last.”

No one had spoken English to me in several months, so I flinch and whipped around. A woman—the Continuity Monitor Catherine—sat on the corral’s rock wall, the breeze rippling her sheer gown. Her leather-sandaled feet were crossed at the ankles, mimicking her stern, folded arms. Her skin glowed white from the subspace shield covering her from head to foot.

“Why would you sneak up on a man in the middle of the night?” I asked, glaring at her. But I already knew the reason for her visit.

Catherine shook her head. “You couldn’t help yourself, huh, Nik?”

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I Sold My First Novel!

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I’ve been sitting on this news since before Christmas, but now that everything is finalized, I can finally announce:

I’ve sold The Bone Flower Throne to Panverse Publishing! It’s the first book in my feminist retelling of the myths and legends surrounding the Toltec priest-king Ce Acatl Topiltzin Quetzalcoatl, and it’s scheduled to be published in late summer, early fall. WorldCon might actually be necessary this year, so I can do some lead-up promotion.

I’m planning to do that Next Big Thing meme about it in the next week or so, so stay tuned to find out more about the book.

Short Fiction Wednesday! Love, Blood and Octli

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Welcome to the third week of Short Fiction Wednesday, in which I feature the first 1.5-2k of a story from my ebook collection Night Bird Soaring and Other Stories, which features 17 different reprint selections ranging from fantasy to horror to alternate history. If you enjoy what you read here, you can purchase the full collection at Amazon or B&N for $2.99.

Night Bird Soaring and Other StoriesThis week’s selection takes us back into ancient myth. “Love, Blood and Octli” originally appeared in Paradox: the Magazine of Historical and Speculative Fiction and follows the life of Ayomichi, the wind god Ehecatl’s first priestess. The god grants the people many wonderful gifts like love, but his darker half cannot help but delight in also releasing chaos to turn happiness into suffering. And as the darkness grows stronger in him, only Ayomichi can save the world–and him–from losing all hope….

Love, Blood and Octli

On my seventh birthday, the feathered serpent gave me my name.

Many snakes lived among the reeds near the pond, most of them full of poison and spite, but this one was different. He was no bigger than the other snakes but was covered in feathers; white ones on his slender body, and long, exquisite emerald ones—like those of the precious quetzal bird—around his neck. I met him as I swam around the pond.

“What a strange creature you are!” I called when I saw him flying above me.

The feathered serpent looked at me with keen yellow-slit eyes. “Ah, Ayomichi,” he declared.

I laughed. “I’m not a turtle.”

“You swim like one.”

“I’m a girl.”

“I can see that. But you’re also Ayomichi. It’s your name.”

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Short Fiction Wednesday! The Music Box

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Welcome to the second week of Short Fiction Wednesday, in which I feature the first 1.5-2k of a story from my ebook collection Night Bird Soaring and Other Stories, which features 17 different reprint selections ranging from fantasy to horror to alternate history. If you enjoy what you read here, you can purchase the full collection at Amazon or B&N for $2.99.

Night Bird Soaring and Other StoriesThis week’s selection is a horror piece that first appeared in the premiere issue of Shock Totem: Curious Tales of the Macabre and Twisted; in fact it was the first story they bought and they originally commissioned cover art based on it, but in the end they decided to go another direction in that department (which I think was smart because the cover art they decided on in the end was awesome). The story, called “The Music Box”, is about stuffed animals, those toys that were your best friends at bedtime when you were a wee child. We all had our favorite, so it should be no surprise that our toys have their favorite child as well…and are willing to kill and maim to keep them for themselves….

(warning: strong language)

The Music Box

Kevin tucked Rodney’s favorite stuffed elephant, Snowflake inside the diaper bag. Snowflake got comfortable, leaned back on a pile of diapers as if they were pillows, then wrapped his worn trunk gently around Kevin’s fingers, to show his appreciation. Kevin gave him a secret smile, which immediately vanished once Cheryl came clicking into the kitchen with her high heels, complaining of the time.

“We should have been on the road a half hour ago,” she said.

The telephone rang, and Cheryl snatched it up.

Snowflake poked his head out between the open zippers just in time to see Rodney come in after her, sucking his fingers and dragging a stuffed teddy bear that wore a blue shirt that had “Boo!” written across the front in black letters. Snowflake cursed under his breath. No doubt Cheryl would insist Rodney take Boo Bear instead of him.

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NBSaOS now available on Nook

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After hearing some complaints about how slow PubIt! currently is with getting new ebooks up for sale on B&N, I was expecting it to be weeks before Night Bird Soaring and Other Stories would be available there. But behold! I beat the odds and it’s up for sale in less than 24 hours. So now you can buy the collection at both Amazon and BN.com.

And if folks who have read it already should wish to leave a review at either sight, I’d be much obliged.