Fantastic Defenders Released

Worlds Enough: Fantastic Defenders Fantastic Defenders is the first volume of a new SF/Fantasy anthology called Worlds Enough, co-edited by myself and Donna Royston. The book was released today, just in time for next week’s planned launch at Balticon.

Here’s the back cover blurb for the anthology…

Across astounding and magical worlds, five heroes step forward to defend against magical threats:

  • A sorceress in a besieged city faces a malignant force even more dangerous than the city’s would-be conquerors.

  • An unassuming bureaucrat stumbles upon a threat to a vast empire and deals with it in his own inimitable fashion.

  • A resourceful bodyguard for an infant princess, trapped and surrounded by merciless assassins, finds a unique way to hold them at bay.

  • A mage press-ganged into the Royal Navy finds himself volunteered for a dangerous secret mission on foreign soil.

  • A disgraced royal guardian who failed in protecting his king hunts down those who cost him his honor.

These are the…FANTASTIC DEFENDERS!

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Martin Wilsey Interviewed Me…

David Keener at the Washington DC Cherry Blossom FestivalMartin Wilsey, author of the Solstice 31 trilogy, was kind enough to feature an interview with me on his blog. He does a regular “Fast Friday Interview” feature where he runs interviews with fellow indie writers. You can find my interview on his web site right now.

In the interview, I talk about things like how I became a writer, as well as my mutant writing method that STILL has all of the other folks in my writing group shaking their heads in bemusement. PLUS, I talk about some of my upcoming projects, which I’m really excited about.

So, that’s right, go over to Marty’s site and check out the interview. And, hey, thanks, Marty! I had a lot of fun participating.

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Balticon Schedule

The Program Schedule for Balticon 51 has just been released. I’m pleased to announce that they’ve selected me for six panels, two of which I’m moderating, and also elected for me to conduct a workshop on Sunday.

My workshop is called: “Is Your Setting Strong Enough to Support a Series?” For those who have taken my previous workshops, it was previously known as “Creating an Adaptive Setting.” I last ran the workshop at Capclave in 2015, so I’m looking forward to conducting it for a whole bunch of new people.

Here’s my Balticon Schedule:

Balticon 51 Schedule for David Keener

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Second Round of Proofs for “The Good Book”

The Good Book: A Novelette by David Keener I just ordered a second round of proofs for my new novelette, “The Good Book.” I fixed the (minor) problems that I found in the first draft, plus added in the changes from the second round of copyedits. Many thanks to Donna Royston for all her help. I should get the proofs by May 5th.

Since I’m pretty confident in this final edition, I ordered five proofs, which is the maximum. If all goes well, I’ll be publishing on or around May 5th and probably handing out the extra copies to some of my critique partners.

NOTE: As of May 12th, The Good Book is out! It’s available on Amazon in both ebook and print formats.

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Manassas Reads 2017: A Community Book Festival

Manassas Reads: A Community Book FestivalMy friend, Martin Wilsey, just clued me in that there’s an upcoming community book festival called Manassas Reads. It’s on May 6, 2017, the day after my new anthology, Worlds Enough: Fantastic Defenders, is going to be published. It’s being held from 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM at the Harris Pavilion, located at 9201 Center Street in Manassas, VA.

Now, Marty is basically a marketing guru, and he’s going to be there selling copies of his own books, as well as the new anthology. This might be the first festival that I attend as an author with actual published works. Of course, what I’ll really be doing is learning the fine art of marketing and self promotion from someone who’s refined it to an art.

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Zombie Anthology

Whispers of the ApocI’ve been invited to participate in a new zombie anthology called Whispers of the Apoc, edited by Martin Wilsey. I’m even consulting on the bible for the anthology, because one of Marty’s goals is for the anthology to share a common, consistent background.

For more details on the anthology, check out the notice on Marty’s blog. The book is being published through Tannhauser Press.

For me, well, that short-circuited my (crazy) plan to publish a zombie story in installments on my web site (see Manhattan Zombies, which I’m renaming as SkyriZe). Getting paid trumps free installments on my blog. Um, sorry.

So, bring on the zombie apocalypse!

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Proof of “The Good Book”

The proof copy of the print edition of my novelette, “The Good Book,” arrived from Amazon today. You probably can’t imagine how excited I was to see that slim, cardboard package waiting for me when I got home from my day job (the one that pays the bills).

While I’ve had some of my stories appear in anthologies, this is the first story I’ve shepherded through the indie publishing process personally. I enlisted other the help of others for cover design and copyediting, but I was responsible for the interior layout and final polish on the wraparound cover.

So, it was with some trepidation that I opened that cardboard sleeve. I pulled out the slim volume inside…and it looked good. Real good.

The cover was laid out perfectly. This is always a challenge, especially for a wraparound cover, because you have to account for the width of the spine. And that varies based on the number of pages in the book.

The book looked ready for publication…but then I found two typos that had made it though copyediting. I’ve fixed them, but I’m still having a quick, final copyedit done. As an author doing indie publishing, my product must be professional…as good, or even better, than the products produced by traditional publishers.

I’ll soon be ordering another proof copy. If that meets my standards, then I’ll launch the ebook and print edition of the book simultaneously on Amazon.

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The Good Book

Wooohooo! My novelette The Good Book is being published in May by Tannhauser Press, in both print and ebook formats. The full wraparound cover appears below:

The Good Book by David Keener

The print layout and ebook were done by Worlds Enough. The cover was done by Don Anderson, based on an unattributed, public domain photograph.

Note: (5/12/17) This book is now available on Amazon in both print and ebook formats.

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Coming Soon: Tranquility and Other Myths

Tranquility and Other Myths, Full Cover

My (very) short story, “Winter Roses,” will be appearing in the upcoming anthology, Tranquility and Other Myths.” The anthology will be published in April, 2017. Here’s hoping you get a kick out of the full cover above, which was put together by John Dwight (including the back cover verbiage).

Seventeen stories of light, night and the writhing shadows. Indeed.

Note: (4/30/17) This just came out. Available on Amazon in print-only.

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The Shortest Fight

This is easily the shortest fight scene I’ve ever written in one of my stories. It’s from “The Rooftop Game,” a 16K word novelette of mine that will be appearing in May in the anthology, “Worlds Enough: Fantastic Defenders.”

The basic premise is “Die Hard, on the roof of a castle tower.” While the King is away, the castle the royal family is staying in is overrun. Unable to escape, Lydio Malik, the Royal Bodyguard for the infant Princess Analisa, takes refuge on the roof of a tower where his enemies will have trouble getting to him.

This is the scene:

   The Kashmal fighter heaved himself over the edge of the roof, lunged to a standing position, drew his sword and took a step towards Malik.
   The fighter’s forward boot slipped on the wet tile where Malik had urinated only a few moments before. He fell forward, audibly cracking his chin as he landed face first on the orange roof tiles. Stunned, he dropped his sword, which slid off the roof, followed almost immediately by the screaming rebel warrior.
   A few seconds later, there was a thud and clatter as the fighter hit the ground below.
   Malik couldn’t help grinning. All of his fights should be that easy.

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