31 Dec 2016

An urban fantasy story review

The Haunting Lessons (The Ghosts & Demons Series Book 1) by [Chute, Robert Chazz, Pop, Holly]

So I had the absolute pleasure of reading The Haunting Lessons by Robert Chazz Chute and Holly Pop. It's an urban fantasy story about ghosts, demons and a coming of age story set in New York City. Beautifully written in first person narrative, the story follows a freshly high school graduated teen as she experiences her first loss (in the form of her high school sweetheart), her first mental hospital to throwing up on a dead body on her first day working at a funeral home.

The story was both thoughtful, scary and funny and certainly had a few morals to pass onto the reader.

It was also one of those stories that was read in one sitting, as it took me the whole day.  

26 Dec 2016

The main character has a name

So good news, the story featuring the Turk and the Joint Space Forces has grown to just under 20,000 words, and am reaching a very important portion of the story where one of the characters is caught up in the middle of a spot of bother, Yeah, not going to add more to that. What I am going to say is that I have a name for the main character.

It will be Abdul Jafari and will be basing him on Kit Harrington's likeness, more or less (I need a visual aid to describe the main character after all).

Abdul has a grandfather and a cousin, called Ismail and Aki respectfully.

24 Dec 2016

A Christmas Eve Writing Update

A B-2 Spirit (centre) trailing a Space Shuttle while flanked by two F-15 Eagles

New story is coming up slowly but maturely, with some changes already put in . . . such as using the Northrop Grumman B-2A Spirit as a template for my Leander Response Spacecraft instead of an Omega Class Destroyer. One awesome thing about having unlimited time is that one gets to write solidly, and with my involvement in preparing foods for tonight more a hindrance than a help, I have been doing precisely that--I've been working on my military science fiction story.

The purpose really is that I want to keep things as plausible as things could get by the year 2067, from technologies to where things are happening. This is in contrast to Call of Duty Infinite Warfare, which was set in the 2080s and yet the technology portrayed was more plot driven than the prequel Star Wars trilogy movies.
It may require some further tweaking to make it more a hard science fiction-like narrative, but I am actually happy with the current setup at 17,600 words.

Right, more later. Have a Merry Christmas one and all.

21 Dec 2016


Here we go, thought this might actually help me move my writing along. These progress reports will also assist you in knowing what I'm up to these days.

Ar this stage I only have the following that you can link through here,

And here too.

To be fair, they represent some of my earliest attempts in writing and looking back at them I cringe. But for now am leaving them up for prosperity's sake. The new year may see some changes.

As mentioned previously in an earlier post or two, Enemy is being edited currently. I hope that it'll be available for submission and/or self publishing sometime in the new year, and definitely plan on turning it into a series of sorts. In the interim I'm trying something new, a new story set in a military science fiction setting. Yes, I've done something like that in Cover Up. But it's been years since I've written in any other genre than the espionage thriller/police procedural, and admittedly writing military science fiction is hard despite my childhood love affair with it.

Nonetheless, I am determined. My previous post talked about how much I enjoyed Killzone and Call of Duty Infinite Warfare, so you'll have a rough idea what I'll be trying to achieve. The good news, the preliminary draft of the story has been received favourably by one of my writing mentors. I can confidently tell you three things.

  1. One of the characters is a Turk by the name of Abdul Jafari.
  2. The antagonists belong to the Colonial Defence Force, a combination of the old Provisional IRA and the PLO but made up of disgruntled asteroid miners and other jokers.
  3. It is strictly set within our Solar System and will be endeavouring to keep to hardish scifi.
There is one major productivity killer coming up, in the form of Christmas and New Year celebrations.

Talk soon . . .

19 Dec 2016

Instead of this, do that

A while back I wrote a number of stories, that at the time, I thought were pretty cool. I then collected them together and printed them out, bound them into 'books' and wrapped them up as presents for family and friends. I'm not going to do that this year. One, other than Enemy, I don't have anything major completed. And for another, in addition to Chasing Shadows that features Gene Bukowski, I just realised that I have two stories already featuring the Turk.

So this is what I'm going to do:

  • Continue waiting for Enemy to be edited.
  • Finish one or both stories featuring Abdul Jafari. One is set on Mars and the other has him flying about aboard the Rapid Response Spacecraft Otago. I do realise that the likelihood of finishing the stories before Christmas are petty slim to naught, but if I can finish one to a level I could give to the editor for a look straight after the new year I'll be happy. Alternatively, I can just edit the sucker myself . . . 
  • See if Chasing Shadows could be part of a multi-story serialisation and/or series featuring Gene Bukowski - essentially making Enemy into the pilot episode or stand-alone?   
What are you up to?

18 Dec 2016

Something new on the horizon

With Enemy still being edited, I decided to try something new. Well, not quite, my editor recommended that I stop working on the planned sequels and grandiosely arced series and/or serial of interconnected novelettes, novellas and short novels featuring Gene Bukowski and his merry band of friends and enemies. She has a point. Enemy is being edited and there are corrections that need doing, especially corrections that may impact on the continuity and the like. Being the good author that I am, I followed my editor's instructions.

All I can say about this new story is that it features a Turk as a main character and a spacecraft belonging to a multinational space programme. The inspiration came from two sources, this one . . .

Image result for killzone

. . . and this . . .
Image result for call of duty infinite warfare

I love both games and the ideas behind them just tickle my imagination, the second one especially as it is set in our Solar System. Plus, I've always wanted to write a military science fiction set in our very own backyard, and do it much like a David Weber, Eric Flint, Tom Clancy or a Richard K. Dick novel (what? It's good to aim high) . . . it just I didn't feel confident that I had the necessary skills or mindset. Enemy has shown me that I can do it, especially as an espionage thriller, and do it in a way where the story is character driven.

All going well, I could do that with my next story.  

1 Dec 2016

Dr Strange Review

So went to see Marvel's latest addition, Dr Strange, and actually liked it. Don't get me wrong, generally speaking Marvel does pretty epic movies to begin with and it's one of those things I actually enjoy because their movies have that little thing known as a plot. The fact that their characters are people we can relate to certainly helps in that aspect as well, as one cannot tell a story without them.

To me the movie was about Strange's realisation that there was more to life then just his job, especially after that car accident. For anyone who experience loss of anything that can be a pretty powerful message, especially if one could relate to the character in question. For me, it did.

Go see it.

Dragoon Liberator and other projects in development stages

As I started out on my writing journey, many, many eons ago, I focused on shorter works. Gradually, I moved to longer pieces and had come ...