New Release — Gathering of Shadows (The Hundred Halls #4)

After a long wait, book four of the Hundred Halls, Gathering of Shadows, is now available!

Every fall the city of Invictus bustles with new students, and the classrooms reek of spent faez.  This year it’s true of every hall except one—Arcanium. 

While Semyon Grey, the Patron of Arcanium, slowly heals from his soul being torn, no one in the Hall can practice their craft, leaving them defenseless against the Cabal and faez madness.  The Silverthorne sisters must find a way to speed up the healing, or the Hundred Halls won’t survive the year.  But everything they try only makes things worse, until they’re left with an impossible decision that may cost the sisters their lives.

Gathering of Shadows is available on Amazon as an ebook for $4.99 and paperback at $12.99.

If you’re new to the series, and would like to get caught up, the Hundred Halls bundle is also available.

The bundle includes the first three books: Trials of Magic, Web of Lies, and Alchemy of Souls.  It can be found on Amazon in ebook for $8.99

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Archon 41 Panel Schedule

If you’re in the St. Louis area and attending Archon 41 this weekend (Sept 29 – Oct 1), I will be in attendance and sitting on a number of panels.  Please look me up and say hello if you’re going to be there.

Panel Schedule

Fantasy World-Building: Not Just a Copy of Medieval Europe

Friday 21:00 – 21:50, Marquette A (Gateway Center)

Learn about creating a setting that lives and breathes and is believably consistent. Fantasy worlds are much more than physical surroundings and non-tech trappings!


Crafting the Dark Hero

Saturday 13:00 – 13:50, Marquette A (Gateway Center)

How to make even the darkest of heroes (or heroines) likable to your audience.


Recurring Themes in Speculative Science Fiction

Saturday 16:00 – 16:50, Marquette B (Gateway Center)

Speculative fiction has become more and more popular in recent years. Come participate in a discussion on themes in spec lit and what’s on the horizon.

Sex and Controversy in Young Adult Literature

Saturday 18:00 – 18:50, Marquette B (Gateway Center)

A discussion of how YA uses sex and controversy to meet the needs of teens. What are the limits? Should there be limits?

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StoryBundle – Light in the Dark YA Bundle

Over my career, I’ve written in many genres but Young Adult is my favorite.  It’s also my favorite to read going all the way back to The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton.  Some of my favorites are The Uglies Trilogy and the Hunger Games.  So I was excited to be invited to a YA themed bundle.

There are thirteen books in the Light in the Dark YA Bundle (if you pay $15), which is a terrific deal.  I’ve included the full Gamers Trilogy, so you won’t have to buy any more books to finish it.  The bundle is available for a limited time.

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The SF&F Binge Reader Bundle

The Digital Sea Bundle is one of ten collections in the SF&F Binge Reader Bundle on StoryBundle.  This is a crazy good deal as you’ll get 19 novels and countless short stories, but it’s only available for a few weeks, so get it while you can.

The bundles also form mini bundles of their own. If you like adventurous science fiction, start with these bundles: The Science Officer Omnibus, and The Diving Series Starter Bundle. If you had a tough few months and want books that will make you smile, start with The Washington Witches, The Thunder Mountain Series Starter Kit, and The Fates Trilogy. If you want to focus on gaming or the digital universe, try The Digital Sea Trilogy and The Feyguard Books. And if you’re in a short story mood, we have the Fiction River Fantasy Bundle, the first year of the acclaimed Uncollected Anthology, and Faerie Summer.

In addition to all that wonderful fiction, if you purchase the bundle you have an option of donating a portion to charity.  The Able Gamers Foundation is an organization that helps people with disabilities participate in the world of high tech gaming by customizing equipment for them.

The initial titles in the Bundle Bundle (minimum $5 to purchase) are:

  • The Digital Sea Complete Box Set by Thomas K. Carpenter
  • Uncollected Anthology: Year 1 by Uncollected Anthology
  • The Fates Trilogy by Kristine Grayson
  • The Faerie Summer Bundle by Jamie Ferguson

If you pay more than the bonus price of just $15, you get all four of the regular titles, plus SIX more!

  • The Washington Witches Series, Volumes 1-3 by Mindy Klasky
  • The Diving Series Starter Bundle by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
  • Fantasy Bundle by Fiction River
  • The Thunder Mountain Starter Bundle by Dean Wesley Smith
  • The Science Officer Omnibus 1 – Volumes 1-4 by Blaze Ward
  • Feyguard Books 1-3 by Anthea Sharp

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!

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Alchemy of Souls, Book 3 of The Hundred Halls, is now available

I am happy to announce that the long awaited Book 3 of The Hundred Halls, Alchemy of Souls is now available on Amazon!  Continue reading the adventures of Aurie and Pi today.

Alchemy of Souls

In the Hundred Halls, students experiment with all manners of magic: catoptromancy, lexology, verumancy, rune spells, demonology, shape changing, and a thousand other arcane techniques.  Every magic is encouraged.  Every magic, except one—soul magic.

As Aurie’s third year begins, students are found without their souls, ripped from their bodies, leaving them empty husks.  Someone, or something, is stealing them for a nefarious purpose.  With that kind of power being collected, not even the professors are safe.  If Aurie and her sister cannot stop the soul thief before the end of the year, the Hundred Halls will never be the same.

Get your copy here, or start reading for free on Kindle unlimited.

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Escape to New Worlds

We all need a break from the daily grind of work, family, and politics.  The Escapist Bundle on Storybundle has arrived just in time to satisfy that need!  There’s a wealth of great fiction in a variety of genres from multiple award-winning authors.  I’m a fan of every author in the bundle and you should be too.

The Escapist Bundle – Curated by Allyson Longueira, WMG Publishing

Ever feel like you need to escape from reality for a while? A day, a week, four years—whatever it takes. It seems like many of us feel that way right now, so what better time for some escapist fiction?

Hence, this new Escapist Bundle for StoryBundle, an entertaining vacation of the written word and a bit of a new format for StoryBundle.

You see, the eleven fantastic books in this bundle come from authors tied together by, among other accolades, their inclusion in a single volume of Fiction River, in this case a volume called Recycled Pulp. For those of you unfamiliar with Fiction River, it’s an original anthology series that Adventures Fantastic calls “one of the best and most exciting publications in the field today.”

With 22 volumes published so far, Recycled Pulp proves one of the most creative volumes. Inspired by the fantastic, escapist pulp fiction of the last century, the amazing authors in this volume were tasked with creating modern escapist fiction from nothing but a pulp-inspired title. The results were fantastic, indeed.

Ten of those authors have provided books for the bundle. Like the diverse genre mix of stories Fiction River is famous for, this bundle also features a diverse genre mix of books. But they all have one very important thing in common—they are the perfect escape from everyday life.

Included in the bundle is, of course, Fiction River: Recycled Pulp, edited by John Helfers. We also have: Lisa Silverthorne’s Isabel’s Tears, a novel about a magical inn; Dayle A. Dermatis’ Waking the Witch, a gothic mystery novel with some paranormal elements and a light romance; Kelly Washington’s The Pale Waters, the first novella in a four-part epic journey; Erica Lyon’s Hot Waters, a steamy sea adventure novel; and New York Times bestselling author Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s The War and After, five historical fantasy stories of magic and revenge.

As a bonus, we have Rebecca Senese’s ten-story science fiction collection Tales of Possibilities; Thomas K. Carpenter’s Revolutionary Magic, a historical fantasy and the first in the Dashkova Memoirs; Annie Reed’s A Death in Cumberland, a moody police procedural; Nebula Award finalist Cat Rambo’s Neither Here Nor There, a double collection of alt-world and real world fantasy stories; and last but not least, USA Today bestselling author Dean Wesley Smith’s The Slots of Saturn, the origin story for his fan-favorite superhero Poker Boy.

As always, at StoryBundle, you name your own price—whatever you feel the books are worth, and a portion of the proceeds goes to charity—in this case, SMART (Start Making a Reader Today). For $5 (or more, if you feel generous), you’ll get the basic bundle of six books in any eBook format—WORLDWIDE. If you pay $14 (or more, if you feel generous), you’ll get the five bonus books as well.

The Escapist Bundle runs for three weeks only. This is cheaper than any vacation, and best of all, you get to enjoy it from wherever you are. Now, that’s a true escape. – Allyson Longueira

The initial titles in the Escapist Bundle (minimum $5 to purchase) are:

  • Waking the Witch by Dayle A. Dermatis
  • Hot Waters by Erica Lyon
  • Recycled Pulp by Fiction River
  • The Pale Waters by Kelly Washington
  • Isabel’s Tears by Lisa Silverthorne

If you pay more than the bonus price of just $15, you get all five of the regular titles, plus SIX more!

  • A Death in Cumberland by Annie Reed
  • Neither Here Nor There by Cat Rambo
  • The Slots of Saturn by Dean Wesley Smith
  • The War and After by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
  • Revolutionary Magic by Thomas K. Carpenter
  • Tales of Possibilities by Rebecca M. Senese

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!

It’s also super easy to give the gift of reading with StoryBundle, thanks to our gift cards – which allow you to send someone a code that they can redeem for any future StoryBundle bundle – and timed delivery, which allows you to control exactly when your recipient will get the gift of StoryBundle.

Why StoryBundle? Here are just a few benefits StoryBundle provides.

  • Get quality reads: We’ve chosen works from excellent authors to bundle together in one convenient package.
  • Pay what you want (minimum $5): You decide how much these fantastic books are worth. If you can only spare a little, that’s fine! You’ll still get access to a batch of exceptional titles.
  • Support authors who support DRM-free books: StoryBundle is a platform for authors to get exposure for their works, both for the titles featured in the bundle and for the rest of their catalog. Supporting authors who let you read their books on any device you want—restriction free—will show everyone there’s nothing wrong with ditching DRM.
  • Give to worthy causes: Bundle buyers have a chance to donate a portion of their proceeds to SMART, a group that provides early reading support, access to books and community engagement to positively impact literacy outcomes and provide equitable opportunity for all kids!
  • Receive extra books: If you beat the bonus price, you’ll get the bonus books!

StoryBundle was created to give a platform for independent authors to showcase their work, and a source of quality titles for thirsty readers. StoryBundle works with authors to create bundles of ebooks that can be purchased by readers at their desired price. Before starting StoryBundle, Founder Jason Chen covered technology and software as an editor for Gizmodo.com and Lifehacker.com.

For more information, visit our website at storybundle.com, tweet us at @storybundle and like us on Facebook.

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Awards Eligibility Post

Ahhh…Winter.  When the air tries to freeze your face off and writers must contort their way through the dance of offering up their fiction for award consideration without seeming too needy.  Like a grass-stuffed lemming, I must follow the herd off the cliff of expectations.

The stories and novels published in 2016 that I would like to be considered for awards are:

Norton Award for Best YA Fiction – Trials of Magic

Short Stories for both Hugo / Nebulas

Also, this is my first year of Campbell Award eligibility.

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Web of Lies Available Now

The Silverthorn sisters are back for their second year at The Hundred Halls. Find out what new evils await them in the latest book, Web of Lies, available TODAY!
web_ebook

Whoever controls the Hundred Halls, controls the world.

Aurelia “Aurie” Silverthorne has high hopes for her second year in the Hundred Halls, the world’s only magical university, but her expectations are destroyed when she accidentally unleashes a plague of faez-eating thralls and spends week after week getting killed in the Grand Contest.

But none of this matters when Aurie learns that the Cabal searches for a powerful magic that will help them get control of the Hundred Halls. If Aurie can’t stop them, then passing her classes will be the least of her worries.

Get the latest installment of The Hundred Halls from Amazon.

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Indie Publishing: 2,119 Days and Counting…

December 19th, 2010.

That was when I published my first book, The Digital Sea.  I’d shopped the novel around to agents and editors, receiving lovely rejections along the way, before deciding to jump into the indie pub revolution with both feet.  There were a lot of reasons for my conversion: control over the end result, speed, the possibility of hitting the literary jackpot.  But those paled against the thrill of seeing my book on Amazon, holding a shiny paperback in my ink-stained hands, reading reviews—good or bad—about my stories.

I was there.  I’d made it.

Like an addict, I’d taken a hit of the good stuff and wanted another shot.  Sure, the money in the beginning was small—a nice dinner once a month—but it was like packing a snowball together, then rolling it in the deep snow.  It was a lot of work, but eventually that thing started to grow.

There were a lot of things to learn back then about the mechanics of the process.  How to find a good editor.  What makes a good cover.  How to price books that sell.  It was wonderful heady stuff that even when I got wrong was fun.  The reality is that I’m still learning those things, fine tuning my understanding, adjusting as the market adjusts.

In 2012, I was waiting in line for my hotel room at Chicon, the World Science Fiction Convention in Chicago, IL.  It was my first convention.  I was nervous and since I’d driven up from St. Louis, I’d over packed, including a cooler of food and a bag full of my books that I’d brought with me.  I was trying to drag my many containers with me when the guy behind me struck up a conversation.  It was some guy name Hugh Howey.  This was before the print deals and the Data Guy stuff.  I knew of his books, how could you not notice them back then, but not a lot else.  He was generous enough to take me to lunch, and I realized in talking to him how little I knew about indie publishing.  He was a gold mine of experience and perspective.  And besides, he’s a sweetheart of a guy.  That persona that you read in his blog, or see in his videos, that’s the real deal.  We also shared a mutual friend, Annie Bellet, who I’d spent years going to workshops with, and discussing this indie pub revolution with on a regular basis.  She’s done fantastically well since then with her 20-Sided Sorceress series.  I bring them up not to name drop, but to point out that the reason the indie publishing scene has done so well is because so many writers have been generous with their experiences, either in person or online.  Even if I hadn’t met Hugh at Chicon, he would have influenced me through his blog and frequent FB posts.

In the years after, my little snowball has grown.  I’ve published over twenty novels.  I’ve sold over 50,000 ebooks, paperbacks, and audiobooks.  Some of my books have spent time in the top 50 on Amazon.  Many of them have been #1 in their category at one time or another.

I’ve been having  a ball writing.  I get to pursue the job of my dreams.  I’m making a five-figure income that’s climbing faster than I expected.  I’m not quite to full time, but I’m getting there, close enough that I can see it happening in the next 2-3 years after the kids are both in college, which by-the-way, is being paid for by the writing job.

There are other benefits. The writing gig earns enough that I go conventions, or get to spend a week with other writers in a fabulous lodge while we workshop our novels with each other.  Technically, these things are work, but I look forward to each and every one as if it were a beach vacation.  I’ve also gotten to meet and learn from a lot of amazing people along the way.  This hasn’t just been a business, but a lifestyle.  I cherish the friendships that I’ll carry with me for the rest of my life.

2,119 days. That’s how many days it’s been since I published my first book.  It seems like a lot now, but in some ways I feel like I’ve just begun.

My latest book was published on September 27th, 2016.  Trials of Magic.  Just eight days ago.

Without a doubt, it’s my best book.  After twenty-something novels, I’ve learned a thing or two about writing, and none of that learning would have been possible without Amazon.  Amazon has been a silent, but strong partner in this business since the beginning, providing a platform to sell my books across the world and receive a timely payment.    This writing business isn’t easy, it takes a lot of work to write a quality book, but at least I know the publishing side of it will be smooth and reliable, thanks to Amazon.

 

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Trials of Magic (The Hundred Halls #1)

For you readers longing for something in the same realm as Harry Potter or The Magicians, I bring you Trials of Magic, the first book in the Hundred Halls series.

trials_ebook

There are exactly one hundred halls of magic to choose from. Ever since our parents were killed I knew exactly which hall was for me.

Aurelia “Aurie” Silverthorne is one of the best and brightest to ever apply to the Hundred Halls, the only magical university in the world. To be accepted, she must pass grueling trials that claim the lives of aspirants every year.

But more than her desire to practice magic is at stake.

Aurie’s little sister has been courting powerful forces in hopes of protecting herself from the beings that killed their parents, but alliances come with complications. As things spiral out of control, and dangerous foes arise at every turn, Aurie knows the only way to protect her sister is to pass the trials—even if it means making a terrible sacrifice.

Trials of Magic can be purchased in ebook format on Amazon for $0.99 or paperback for $12.99.

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