Fantastic Defenders: Hardcover Preview

Fantastic Defenders, Hardcover Cover

There’s a hardcover of my anthology, Fantastic Defenders, coming out in March. The anthology was edited by myself and Donna Royston, and was published in mid-2017 in the trade paperback and ebook formats. It’s sold well enough that Tannhauser Press is coming out with a hardcover edition.

So, above, you’ll see a preview of the full wraparound cover, including flaps, for the hardcover edition of the book.

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Forever Is Not Enough, or How to Lose a Great Title

Pub Interior, by Leonard Defrance, 18th CenturyWell, I have some…er…interesting news. Apparently great minds think alike.

Some of you know that I’ve been working on the background for a themed anthology called The Forever House since early 2016. The concept is a shared setting, a sort of pan-dimensional tavern that can appear anywhere, and any time, in the multiverse. An artifact of high magic, created by the Ancients, a mysterious race long lost in the depths of time. A tavern/inn that draws in travelers and adventurers, either directly or sometimes in their dreams.

In fact, here’s a vignette I published way back in 2016 that was set in the Forever House.

Oh, yes, I know. There are other magical bars in the SF/Fantasy field. But this one, well, I went all-out on the details. How the magic works. Who works at the establishment. How guests can arrive either in person, or sometimes in a dream. Imagine a magical bar with the details worked out to the level a role-playing game supplement. Picture a bar outside of normal space and time where Sauron and Gandalf could have a conversation…

Sadly, my title, The Forever House, has been totally STOMPED on by Mike Mignola, the creator of Hellboy, who is developing an anthology TV series called…you got it…The Forever House.

Now picture how annoyed I am at the situation.

I’m actually about three months away from publishing an anthology featuring this magical inn…

Now, I don’t blame Mike Mignola. He had no knowledge of my project; he’s done nothing wrong. It’s just a coincidence. But that doesn’t mean I have to like it.

I’ve researched his project, and it’s nothing like my Forever House project. In Mike’s background, the Forever House is a mansion where lots of magical artifacts are stored. It’s intended to be the basis of an anthology TV show, with each episode featuring a different artifact. He just latched onto a cool name.

Before me.

Given that there’s an entertainment company involved, there are already trademarks involving the Forever House name. In fact, based on a commercial search, a trademark has existed since 2013, which obviously predates my project.

I could still probably use the title, but why would I? I wouldn’t want to be drowned out by a more widely advertised and popular project. And an entertainment company can swing a lot more marketing dollars than I can.

Sigh. It quickly became clear that a name change was in order. I consulted with my friends and fellow writers in my writing group, the Hourlings, and finally selected a new title.

So, the new working title for my anthology is “The Forever Inn: The House of Many Worlds.”

Not much of a change. But just enough.

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Received Proof Copy of “The Curator”

Proof for The Curator, an Anthology

The proof of The Curator, the new anthology from the Hourlings Writing Group, arrived today just hours after the meeting. I really wanted to show it to folks at the meeting. Oh well.

Anyway, it looks good. It will be reviewed and finalized this week. With any luck, the anthology will be officially published by the end of the week.

Just in time to be a stocking stuffer.

(Hint, Hint).

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Hardcover Discussions

Breaking news. I’m currently in discussions to do a hardcover of Fantastic Defenders, the anthology that I co-edited with Donna Royston. It’s a fantasy anthology about heroes fighting against fantastical threats.

I’ll have more news as the situation develops.

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It’s Time for a “Second Round”

Second Round: A Return to the Ur-Bar

My latest short story, “The Whispering Voice,” is being published in Second Round: A Return to the Ur-Bar, edited by Joshua Palmatier and Patricia Bray. It’s about a mother, a deadly problem and a forgotten god (I was trying to channel a little bit of Neil Gaiman).

The new anthology is currently available for pre-order and will start shipping on June 15th. It’s the second in a series, about a magic bar that appears in different times and places (the first volume was called After Hours).

Here’s the official description of the new anthology:

For thousands of years the immortal Gilgamesh has presided over the legendary Ur-Bar, witnessing history unfold from within its walls. Some days it is a rural tavern, others a fashionable wine shop. It may appear as a hidden speakeasy or take on the form of your neighborhood local. For most patrons it is simply a place to quench their thirst, but for a rare few the Ur-Bar is where they will meet their destiny.

Join David Keener, R.K. Nickel, Rachel Atwood, Kari Sperring, Jean Marie Ward, Gini Koch, Jacey Bedford, William Leisner, Garth Nix, Diana Pharaoh Francis, Mike Marcus, Kristine Smith, Aaron M. Roth, and Juliet E. McKenna as they recount all new tales from the Ur-Bar. From humor to horror, from the Roman Empire to Martian Colonies, there‚Äôs something to please everyone. Just remember to beware when the mysterious bartender offers you the house special…

Here are the relevant links for purchasing the book and related items:

   Trade Paperback
   Kindle
   Nook
   Kickstarter Edition (Limited)
   Cover Art Print (very nice, BTW, check it out)

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Second Round: Cover Art Reveal

Second Round: Cover Art

This is the cover art for the upcoming anthology, Second Round: A Return to the Ur-Bar. This fabulous picture was created by Justin Adams of Varia Studios.

The anthology features stories set in a mystical bar that appears at different times and places throughout history, with Gilgamesh cursed to be its eternal bartender. My story, “The Whispering Voice,” will appear in this book, since editors Joshua Palmatier and Patricia Bray were kind enough to accept my story.

The anthology will be published in August by Zombies Need Brains. Preorders can be purchased here.

Editorial Note: The anthology was published in June, 2018. Copies can be purchased online at Amazon.

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Look What Just Arrived…

Book Delivery: Fantastic Defenders

Hey, look what just arrived. It’s my latest delivery of Fantastic Defenders from CreateSpace. Another box of selling stock, 20 copies. As it turns out, just about every copy is already spoken for, so I actually need to order another box.

This is, well, not a new edition, but I did take the opportunity to fine-tune the cover a little bit. And, ahem, a few typos that crept through the copyediting process have also been corrected.

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Hourlings at Work: A Dynamic Writing Group

Hourlings At WorkIn 2014, I became a charter member of the Loudoun Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers, a spin-off from a more general-focused writing group. With weekly meetings every Sunday morning, the group has been like bootcamp for the SF/Fantasy writers associated with the group, including myself.

Participating on Meetup as the Loudoun Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers, the group is more informally known as “The Hourlings.” This is the name under which the organization has published two anthologies, with a third on the way. The name is a bit of a takeoff on the “Inklings,” a legendary writing group in England that included J.R.R Tolkien, C. S. Lewis and others.

To demonstrate how the group has progressed, I’ve compiled a list of all the publications that the members have made available for sale on Amazon since 2013. I’m pleased to add that I am amongst that writers who have begun releasing work to the public.

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Three Hoarsemen Interview

The Three Hoarsemen Podcast Donna Royston, Martin Wilsey and I were interviewed a week ago for Episode 44 of the Three Hoarsemen podcast. We got to discuss our anthology, Worlds Enough: Fantastic Defenders, in our various roles as editors or, in Marty’s case, as the publisher (Tannhauser Press) of the volume.

Worlds Enough: Fantastic Defenders We had a lot of fun being interviewed. We got to talk about the anthology, our other works, Tannhauser Press and a few other subjects. The podcast is an hour and forty-two minutes long. If you want to skip forward to our interview, we’re at the 1:07:48 mark.

I especially liked their name for the episode. Since they also discussed the movie, Guardians of the Galaxy, earlier in the podcast, the title they chose was: “Fantastic Defenders of the Guardians of the Galaxy.”

I think that has a nice ring to it.

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Selected as Ebook Deal by SF Signal

SF Signal: Ebook Deal Hey, this is awesome! My new anthology, Worlds Enough: Fantastic Defenders, has been selected and publicized as an SF Signal Ebook Deal. How cool is that?

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