Thursday, November 13, 2014

She has one brother left...


    Jora's mouth watered, and her stomach churned. Though she had to know what happened to her brother, she needed a minute to get a hold of herself first. She dabbed at the sweat on her brow, took a long drink of water, and continued.

    The two enforcers left the room. Finn struggled to get free, but it was no use. The straps were secure. After a few minutes, the big, ugly enforcer they called Gruesome entered, dressed in an apron stained with blood. Finn's face contorted into an expression of fearful disgust. He tried to say something, but the gag muffled his words beyond recognition.
    "Good afternoon," Gruesome said with a smile. He was missing the first two molars behind his long eyeteeth on the top, and the two center teeth were chipped and ragged. "I'm Gruesome, but you can call me Grue if you want." He checked the tightness of the straps holding Finn into the chair. "I'll try to make this as painless as possible. Apparently, your sister has threatened my boss with bodily harm if I hurt you too badly."
    "Jora?" Finn asked.
    "Around here, she's called the Gatekeeper. So sensitive, like a delicate flower. We have to tiptoe around her until we figure out how to harness her like a draft horse. You might just be the bit in her mouth, the yoke on her shoulders, the whip on her ass." Gruesome chuckled as he sauntered around behind the chair. "For that reason, we'll keep you alive as long as possible…"

Excerpt from Call of the Colossus, coming December 2014!

Saturday, November 01, 2014

Kindle Countdown Sale


If you've been waiting for the books in The Kinshield Saga to go on sale, mark your calendars. I've got a Kindle Countdown Deal going on for each book. The initial price for each book during the countdown sale is 99c. It goes up to $1.99 halfway through, then returns to its usual price of $3.97 at the end of the sale. Here are the dates:

Book 2, The Wayfarer King: Begins Nov 1, ends Nov 7
Book 3, Well of the Damned: Begins Nov 8, ends Nov 14
Book 4, Kinshield's Redemption: Begins Nov 15, ends Nov 21.

My science fiction-thriller, Inhuman Salvation, is also participating: Begins Nov 22, ends Nov 28.

Remember, The Kinshield Saga Book 1, The Kinshield Legacy, is currently free at Amazon, B&N, iTunes, Kobo, and Smashwords.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

War as an instrument of justice

While watching last week's episode of Sleepy Hollow, I got wrapped up in one particular line, spoken by Jeremy, the Horseman of War.

"What is war but an instrument of justice?"

Indeed! I'm close to wrapping up the first draft of The Mindstream Chronicles book 2, and need to start planning and outlining book 3. It's helpful to think in terms of theme and premise when starting a new book: what's the story about? What statement does the story attempt to prove true?

Considering the strong themes of justice vs. revenge, doing the right thing, and loyalty in the series, this question was particularly poignant to me. Many wars are about domination or greed, but some are about justice. Attacking terrorists who blow up buildings, killing thousands of people inside is one example.

Then again, is that justice or revenge?

Friday, September 26, 2014

Do not eat the godfruit.

Though Boden didn't want to say goodbye to his neighbors and friends and family, he was eager to get started on his journey.

His father hugged him tightly, and he returned the embrace with only one loose arm. "Everyone around you will eat the godfruit every morning," Gunnar whispered into his ear. "It's a mistake. Don't eat it."

Boden stiffened. His father had never spoken of the godfruit or the Tree of the Fallen God, which were at the center of the century-old conflict, though only the men who'd returned from the war knew why. No one ever spoke of them, and on the few occasions Boden had asked, he'd received only a stern glare or a warning to drop the matter.

"Do you hear me, son? No matter what the other warriors say, no matter what your commander says. Do not eat the godfruit."

Boden was unsure he could disobey a commander who ordered him to eat it. "Why? What does it do?"

Gunnar pulled back and held him at arm's length, both hands gripping Boden's upper arms. The two men locked gazes. "It will infect your soul with a foul sickness. Rely on your training, not some magical fruit. You've worked hard, trained hard. You're ready. I haven't been the father you wanted, and I—I regret that, but I've been the drill master you needed. Trust me. Trust yourself."

He cares. Boden felt like a boy again, the one who'd wished every night for his papa to return safely from war. His eyes watered and threatened to spill over, but then Gunnar let him go and turned away. Boden breathed in deeply, tamped down the boy he used to be, tamped down the years of disappointment and hurt Gunnar had saddled him with, and became another version of his father.

An excerpt from Song of the Sea Spirit.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

"I've got a bad feeling about this..."

Ryder sat on the cold concrete floor in complete darkness, leaning against the wall. His punishment was six hours in solitary for fighting. Dane got a harsh reprimand and sent to his apartment. Huff and Puff got off with a warning. Where was the justice?

The lock tumbler clunked, and the door swung open. He shielded his eyes from the blinding light in the hallway. Three ASP guards stood in the doorway. They may have thought their faces were obscured by the cell’s darkness, but Ryder didn’t have any trouble making them out. If that weren’t enough, he knew them by their scents: Slater, Mann, and Richardson.

“My time isn’t up yet. What do you want?” An instinct awakened. Ryder got a bad feeling about this. No, they wouldn’t do anything. They wouldn’t dare.

“Your claw punctured that little boy’s arm,” Slater said. His voice sounded unusually deep and gravelly as if he was trying to obscure the natural timbre. “Poor kid might need rabies shots.”

No mention of the fracture. “It was an accident. Someone pushed me into him.”

“You should know better than to mess with a human child.”

“You got it wrong.” Ryder climbed to his feet in case he needed to defend himself. “I didn’t mess with Jory.”

“Humphrey and Pavel say different.”

“Huff and Puff? They would. They know how to play you stupid bastards.”

He saw the blur of a nightstick.

A short excerpt from Inhuman Salvation, a science fiction thriller.

Monday, September 22, 2014

The Kinshield Saga Free to Read

A few days ago, I announced that I've removed my science fiction novel, Inhuman Salvation, from sale at all retail stores except for Amazon to try the "Select" program at Amazon. This gets the book into the Kindle Owners' Lending Library, putting it in front of a new audience and making it available to read "free" for Amazon Prime members and Kindle Unlimited subscribers.

I've decided to try the same program with books 2, 3 and 4 in The Kinshield Saga (The Wayfarer King, Well of the Damned, and Kinshield's Redemption). While this does mean the books won't be available at B&N, Kobo, iTunes, or Smashwords for at least the next 90 days, you can still buy the books if you don't shop at Amazon. Contact me for details. I don't want to "strand" anyone who wants to read the books!

The Kinshield Legacy (book 1) is still available as a free download at B&N, Kobo, iTunes, NoiseTrade, and Smashwords as well as Amazon.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

I must be mad... mad... mad...

The auditions for the audiobook edition of The Kinshield Legacy are now closed, and a narrator has been selected. I was very impressed with the vocal talent out there on ACX.com and had over 30 fine narrators audition. If the market interest in book 1 is there, I'll go ahead and have the rest of the series done too.

There were 3-4 narrators that I loved. Any of them would have been awesome for this book, but one stood apart because of the extra touches he added to bring the story to life. I can't wait for y'all to hear it!

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Sentenced to death

"Guilty of treason."
Guilty.
Guilty.
The words echoed through Jora Lanseri's mind with every scuffling step she took down the dank corridor toward her doom. The shackles around her wrists clanged and echoed against the gray brick walls that closed in on her. The sound of her heartbeat intensified. Her breathing grew louder.
"Sentenced to death by hanging," the justice captain said.
Her knees weakened, and she stumbled. The enforcers' hands clamped harder around her upper arms and kept her from falling. No. It isn't fair.
With a whistle, she could have summoned an ally to free her, to turn her guards to stone or put them to sleep, but the gag between her teeth made calling for Po Teng impossible.

A sneak peek at book 2 of The Mindstream Chronicles, coming soon!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

“Anyone else care to try that?”

“I need to question a few more innkeepers before it gets too late.” Daia stood and drained her ale. “Be ready at daybreak. I’ll find out what I can tonight, and at the very least we can ask around at the Lucky Inn.”

As she walked through the tavern toward the door, one man reached out and patted her backside. Daia grabbed the man by the hair with one hand and yanked him backward so far that he teetered on the rear legs of his chair. She slammed her other fist into his face. The fool crashed to the floor, tumbled over backward with sprawling legs, and knocked into the table behind him, spilling ale everywhere.

“Anyone else care to try that?” she asked, looking around.

The tavern was as quiet as a tomb except for Gavin’s amused chuckle. He lifted his mug to her in a gesture of respect and agreement. He might actually enjoy this mission.
A short excerpt from The Kinshield Legacy, coming soon on Audible.com!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Available to read free

As a writer, my goal is to write stories that people want to read. As a publisher, my goal is to get people to buy the stories I do write. Some caught on and found a wonderful audience and continue to find new readers every day. One in particular... well, it just hasn't.

I've tried new covers, new titles, putting out an audiobook, and nothing has worked to breathe life into my science fiction novel, Inhuman Salvation, despite its great reviews. The vast majority of people who read it like it -- I'm confident of that. Something about the story (or its description) isn't striking a chord and getting people to try it. But there's one thing I haven't tried: going exclusive at Amazon through the Select program, which would make it available to read "free" via the Kindle Owners' Lending Library and Kindle Unlimited. (I put free in quotes, because you have to be an Amazon Prime member or pay for the KU service to get access to the library.)

What this means is that Inhuman Salvation is going to be removed from sale at all retail outlets except Amazon for at least the next 90 days. If you don't shop at Amazon and still want to read the book, you can buy it directly from me on my web site.


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Monday, September 15, 2014

The Lies Dragons Tell

For the past couple weeks, we've been sharing excerpts, artwork, and teases on Facebook about Book 1 of The Dragons of Kudare, but the wait is over -- The Lies Dragons Tell is now available!

If you pre-ordered before today, the book will auto-download to your Kindle. Just sync and start reading!

Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00N1Y8FVI
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00N1Y8FVI
Amazon CA: http://www.amazon.ca/dp/B00N1Y8FVI
Amazon AU: http://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B00N1Y8FVI

Amazon DE: http://www.amazon.de/dp/B00N1Y8FVI
iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/the-lies-dragons-tell/id915345863?ls=1&mt=11
Kobo:http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/the-lies-dragons-tell

B&N:http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-lies-dragons-tell-india-drummond/1120328827?ean=2940150626850



Saturday, September 13, 2014

And a glint of wet steel

Excerpt

Jora glimpsed movement—a man. A stranger. He moved silently into another room, but all Jora could sense were darker shadows among lighter ones.

And a glint of wet steel.

No.

He entered another home where a lamp was burning. A woman was asleep in a rocker, an infant in her arms. Jora watched him, a shaven-headed soldier covered in blood, creep toward them.

No, Jora thought. Please don't.

She couldn't bear to watch what he did to them, but she saw his face as he did it. It was filled with madness and rage, and a perverse pleasure gleamed in his eyes.

A rag doll with yellow yarn ponytails tumbled to the floor and lay still.

Description

Jora Lanseri has the uncommon ability to enter the Mindstream to witness any event in the present or past. After beginning her training as a Truth Sayer in the Order of Justice Officials, Jora witnesses a shocking crime. Jora begins a dangerous quest to bring the culprit to justice, but the deeper she probes, the more she learns that greed and corruption hold benevolence hostage.

Thursday, September 04, 2014

The Whispering Sea - It Begins...

It looks like Book 2 in The Mindstream Chronicles will be called The Whispering Sea, unless I can come up with a better title between now and December. There's still plenty of time to vote on it if you have an opinion!


Only a day after finishing the formatting for The Lies Dragons Tell, and I'm ready to start writing again. In fact, I've been sneaking in some writing here and there, and have two chapters done so far!

For me, the hardest part about starting a new novel is knowing where to begin. Not so for this story. I know exactly where to begin, and I'm thrilled with the opening scene! I can't wait for y'all to read it -- and the rest of the story, too, of course. I have lots in store for poor Jora.

< evil laugh >

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

New Release Fun -- The Lies Dragons Tell!

To celebrate the upcoming release of The Lies Dragons Tell, India Drummond and I are giving away some great prizes!

* First Place (Grand Prize): A Kindle Fire HD (8GB) and Kindle edition of The Lies Dragons Tell
* Second Place: Paperback copy of The Lies Dragons Tell autographed by both authors *
* Third Place: A $10 Amazon gift card

To enter the drawing, visit The Dragons of Kudare Facebook page (http://woobox.com/uswjsa). To put your name in the hat more than once, after you enter, you'll be given the chance share the announcement with your friends. (You can share daily for more entries. When your friends sign up, you get more entries too!) Visit and Like our Facebook fan pages (India Drummond - Author and KC May Books) for two bonus entries.

Contest ends on Release Day, September 15th! Winners will be randomly selected via WooBox.


*Because the authors live in different countries, this might take a couple extra weeks to receive.



Book 1 of The Dragons of Kudare

A mysterious illness strikes down a young woman pledged to the god of the Blessed Empire. Two brothers, as helpless as the healers who say there's nothing more they can do, watch while their sister fades away.

Determined to save her, they approach a dragonborn alchemist who promises help but leads them along a path of hardship, darkness, sacrilege, and death. Impossible choices divide the brothers as their love and loyalty are tested. What price is too high to save someone you love?