“We All Fall Down”

So, it the fall season. It may just be my writer’s imagination buffeting my mind with stray images and thoughts, but in thinking of the season, the snippet of lyric from a well-known children’s song keeps repeating in my head. Do you recognize it?

Now, I’ll admit that it’s sort of a morbid thing to think about, considering the popular interpretation that this particular rhyme is referring to plagues that killed hundreds of thousands of people in Europe in the Middle Ages. But really, isn’t the fall seaons about dying and non-action anyway?

If you think things are getting darker and darker as this article goes on, well, that’s a normal part of the fall season, too, isn’t it?

Do you save daylight?

In the United States (at least in the states that participate), the clocks were just turned back this last weekend to go from Daylight Saving Time to Standard Time, wreaking havoc with many people’s regular daily rhythms. And yes, days are now darker in the afternoon. If you are in an area that doesn’t follow the ridiculous practice, consider yourself lucky.

But I digress. It’s true that the fall is dark and nature begins to slow things down, even in a relatively moderate weather pattern like Southern California where I live. But that doesn’t mean people necessarily follow suit. Holidays, cold-weather sports, and other seasonal activities make the months from October through December some peoples’ favorite time of the year.

Falling Faster

And you know what else? All activities involving books increase during this time of year. Sales, events, even publishing is thriving in the fall months. From National Novel Writer’s Month (NaNoWriMo; see my posting from my experience with it in 2015 or my post on what NaNoWriMo is) and special sale prices to multi-author boxed sets, it’s a good time to be a reader. Or an author.

So, it’s not all doom and gloom. We can all fall down, but there’s nothing saying we need to stay down. Enjoy the cooler weather (if you’re in the part of the world where it is indeed cooler at this time of year), pick up a book by your favorite author, and let your imagination take you where it will.

I plan on having a good fall season. How about you?

 

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Unmasked, Wanderer’s Song, and a Boxed Set

Wanderer’s Song: Song of Prophecy Book 1

I have three things to report. First, Wanderer’s Song, the book I wrote for the Magic After Dark boxed set, is now available as a standalone title in Kindle and paperback formats.

The one to crush the darkness…

Nearly three thousand years ago, the Prophet penned the Song of Prophecy, foretelling a time when darkness would engulf the world and threaten all life. The Malatirsay would come, the Chosen One to save the world of Dizhelim, wielding magic unseen in centuries. To prepare for this future time, the Hero Academy was built, its sole purpose to train the One. But it has lost its focus throughout the ages, not watching vigilantly for the signs of the end.

The time has arrived and the animaru have come, dark creatures of un-life, intent on snuffing out all living things and light itself. But where is the Malatirsay?

Aeden Tannoch, trained as a highland clan warrior, raised by the Gypta traveling people, could be the One, but he cannot use the promised magic. Yet. In the midst of the dark swarm invading his world, he must travel to the Hero Academy to seek the aid and tutelage of the masters there. The enemy has caught his scent and pursues him. If he doesn’t learn to use the power he is prophesied to employ, not only will he fall, but the entire world will die with him.

 

Unmasked: Unlikely Hero Series Book 2

Also, Unmasked, the second book in the Unlikely Hero series, is now out for pre-order on Amazon. The official launch date is December 8, 2017.

Being a hero just became a tougher gig.

Daniel and Amy, as the superheroes Angel and Kestrel, have defeated Crusher, ending the supervillain’s plans for domination. All that’s left to be done is to clean up the non-super criminals and Sueño will be safe again. Or so they think.

Crusher’s father, going by the supervillain handle Pestilence, has other plans for the two heroes, and the city they protect. He won’t stop until both of them are killed in the most painful of ways and the city that supported them is punished. With his powers and the resources he commands, it’s not an idle threat.

Meanwhile, other criminals with super powers seem to be popping up like proverbial weeds. Some of them join Pestilence in his quest for power…and his plans for revenge.

When Angel and Kestrel’s biggest secret is revealed to the world, things get even worse. How can the two young heroes stand up to the

 

HMS Boxed Set

Third, I have finalized the cover art (see below) for the Harmonic Magic series boxed set. The set will include Vibrations, Harmonics, Resonance, and Gray Man Rising. For those who are subscribers of my newsletter PEP Talk, I am swapping out a brand new story in the Tales of Gythe collection for Gray Man Rising as a free book for being a newsletter subscriber. I’ll be sending out a newsletter shortly to explain it. The HMS boxed set will launch probably sometime in early December.

 

 

 

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Resonance is out!

Resonance, the third book in the Harmonic Magic trilogy, is out. Experience the end of the quest for the three artifacts of power. Find out if Gythe will begin its new government or fall under the tyrannical rule of Chetra Dal. This third book completes the story about Sam and Nalia’s adventures in Gythe. For now.

 

The master revealed…the end in sight.

Ayim Rasaad is dead, the threat apparently ended. After all the battles, all the death, all the heartache, Sam and the other heroes of Gythe thought they had finally won.

They were wrong.

Somehow, Rasaad’s master pilfered the two artifacts of power his apprentice had found. Only one remains hidden. When the three are united, magical might as had not been known for ages will be at the user’s fingertips.

Sam Sharp intends to be the one to obtain the last object, stopping his mysterious enemy once and for all.

All he needs to do is find the missing item that has been hidden for millennia, destroy the army trying to crush everything good in the world, and defeat a villain who may or may not be the most renowned Zouyim master who ever lived.

Get the final book in the Harmonic Magic trilogy and experience the struggle, the danger, the liberation of Gythe…or its destruction.

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Magic After Dark Boxed Set Now Available

The boxed set including my brand new novel Wanderer’s Song (Song of Prophecy Series Book 1) is now available on most e-book marketplaces. Check out the page dedicated to it for details.


These heroes and heroines are redefining the meaning of their lives…and the villains are about to get what’s been coming to them. 

Journey from the hills of Ireland to Victorian England, from medieval Italy to eighteenth century Egypt, from the United States to the sand-baked Middle East and beyond to explore forbidden magic, navigate the pitfalls of ancient prophecies, battle vampires and shifters, and defeat evil sorcerers and hellish demons.

This unique collection, inspired by the ability to empower yourself by redefining your identity on your own terms, contains over one million words of captivating urban fantasy and paranormal romance fiction that’s guaranteed to keep you up long after dark.

Each book within this collection is exclusive to the set and can’t be found anywhere else. Get it now for a future filled with mystery, adventure, romance, and magical thrills!


Here is some information on my novel Wanderer’s Song, included in the boxed set:

The one to crush the darkness…

Nearly three thousand years ago, the Prophet penned the Song of Prophecy, foretelling a time when darkness would engulf the world and threaten all life. The Malatirsay would come, the Chosen One to save the world of Dizhelim, wielding magic unseen in centuries. To prepare for this future time, the Hero Academy was built, its sole purpose to train the One. But it has lost its focus throughout the ages, not watching vigilantly for the signs of the end.

The time has arrived and the animaru have come, dark creatures of un-life, intent on snuffing out all living things and light itself. But where is the Malatirsay?

Aeden Tannoch, trained as a highland clan warrior, raised by the Gypta traveling people, could be the One, but he cannot use the promised magic. Yet. In the midst of the dark swarm invading his world, he must travel to the Hero Academy to seek the aid and tutelage of the masters there. The enemy has caught his scent and pursues him. If he doesn’t learn to use the power he is prophesied to employ, not only will he fall, but the entire world will die with him.

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Every Step Is a Victory

 

The Grand Canyon from the upper portion of the South Kaibab trail (beginning of the hike)

Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to complete one of the goals I set for myself for this year: to hike the Grand Canyon from rim to rim. It was something I had been thinking about doing for a while, but finally decided the time would never be quite right, so I might as well do it now. Besides crossing another goal off my list, I also learned something from my experience. What I re-learned was that most times, the way we look at what happens to us is more important than what actually happens to us.

I know, that sounds deep and philosophical. It sounds like another motivational story where the teller (that would be me) tries to impart some kind of life lesson on the reader (that would be you). Let’s not suffer through that. I’d like to apply what I learned to the process of writing. Grander applications can be left to those who want to make them. I’m going to keep it light.

Let me give you some background. We can all agree that the Grand Canyon is huge. Hiking it from rim to rim can generally be done either from north to south or from south to north. I chose the latter. Traveling down the South Kaibab trail from the South Rim, it’s nearly seven miles to the Colorado River at the bottom, with more than four thousand feet of elevation loss. The hike up the North Rim is more than fourteen miles, with an elevation gain of 5700 feet. Altogether, it’s a hike of over twenty-two miles.

Not surprisingly, I got tired on the hike.

Part of the North Kaibab Trail

The trail is fantastic and there are adequate opportunities to refill water containers, but it is a long hike. The last four miles or so were an experience in torture and longevity for me, mainly because I never condition adequately for these things. I found myself trying to convince the part of me that just wanted to lie down to keep going, to make it to the top.

I chanted to myself, “One step after another. Keep going. Every step is a victory.” It worked. I was slow for those last few miles. I hurt. I wanted to stop and take a nap, for maybe a day or a week. But I continued and finished the hike.

As I drove home after the hike, I thought a lot about my little mantra. It was true on the hike that every step was another victory, every time I put my foot forward it was closer to the major victory of finishing the hike. Each time I resisted the urge to stop, I won a tiny battle. I thought about how true it is that all the little wins are really what’s important, whether hiking or doing something else.

It applies well to writing. Often, in the writing process, there are sticking points. There are times when we are so tired, so overwhelmed, so sick of editing or structuring or any one of a number of other things, that we want to quit. Just one more word or sentence, paragraph or page, and we have taken another step. We have declared another small victory.

Will this new—although it’s really not new so much as something familiar viewed from another angle—idea help me in my writing, in life? I’m sure it will. The lesson is real to me, branded into my soul by the pain through which I have come by the experience. It makes me feel a little better when I’m tired, beaten down, or just plain want to quit.

The Grand Canyon from near the top of the North Rim (North Kaibab Trail)

The physical experience of the hike was hard, but the exhilaration of finishing and looking back over the canyon, one of the natural wonders of the world, that I had crossed, is indescribable and priceless. It was very nearly the same type of feeling when I hold in my hand a new book I have just published. In my opinion, we can all use a few more of those types of victories. What do you think?

 

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