My kids used to ask me "Whatcha doing?" They didn't really want an answer. However, I thought I would pop on here and tell you all what we've been up to.
We're doing some giveaways! 1:05 a.m. was free last month. This month the plan is to have Grinding My Gears up for free. If you've read my first book, and you want to find out what happened to Gears (Rea's best friend) November you will have your chance.
As for new works. Ahhh... that's a little more tricky.
Monica and I write together. I'm sure you have all seen that. Since I cut my wrist with a Skill Saw, she is my everything when it comes to the keyboard (Hell, she's my everything in other places as well, but you don't want to know about that!)
Anywho, Monica and I started working on a story called A Christmas Cup Of Joe. If you've read the other books you might remember Joe. He is Karma and Rea's son. When we first started this project, I had an outline in mind. Monica wanted to make the story lighter and add some fun Christmas stuff to it. I knew that I wanted to try out my hand at writing a Male/Male romance, but I had to rely on Monica for the sex scenes because she has read some of that genre.
In the end, after the book was written... everything sorta fizzled.
That's when things got interesting.
There is a customer that comes in the bookstore who always says the same thing to Monica. He tells her that she has "Ant-like focus." Well, that's basically what happened.
As soon as the book wasn't approved my our publishing house, Monica got fixated. She is obsessed with the MS and will not look at other books outlines. That includes 3:05 a.m.
So Whatcha doing? Nothing.
Monica just keeps going over the same work. She sits and taps her pen on our writing notebook. It's hard to watch. They say "A non-writing writer is a monster courting insanity." I sometimes worry about that. Between us, this has caused writer's block and I've never seen Monica have that before. She won't move forward. I cant without her. So, I'm hunting.
What can I say? I guess when the going gets tough, you hunt for food?
I used to leave on a hunting trip and come back after five days to a fully written novel for me to start working on. I don't think that's going to happen any time soon.
But, in the meantime, check in with me on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram. I'll be doing that giveaway! A free download of Grinding My Gears is soon to come!
Hello my friends,
This week my publishing house, Troll River, is giving away my first book 1:05 a.m. An Ice Era Chronicle (Book 1) away for FREE!
I'll be honest... this reminds me of a drug dealer. The publishing house is all like (Picture guy in trench coat here.) "Take this first one for free... see if you like it... then come back and see me."
And then your hooked!
But wait, this is a kick-ass book! I hope you read it and totally get hooked! So far we're on the fifth Ice Era Chronicle and we have plans for many, many, more! Monica and I plan to end this series at 12:05 a.m. Plus, we want to write a few off-the-rails in between all the numbers so that we have some fun mixes and matches.
Anyway, if you know someone who might want to try out our work, tell them that this is the week to do it! Here is the link:
I know I'm a little late to tell you that Two For Tea An (Off-The-Rails) Ice Era Chronicle is now out!
We did the Read For Review Event and if you missed it, I hope you will check us out for the next book! Reviews are so important!
I also wanted to give a big thank you to all the people who did give Tea's book a review. I do like feedback and it's nice to have readers thoughts on my work.
I had a few people ask me why I would write a story for a member of The Originals (The rival organization who hates the H.S.P.C.) The H.S.P.C. was built by our hero in 1:05 a.m. but even though Tea is considered the "Bad Guy" I wanted to show that no one is only one way. We as people have many sides. Tea was both bad and good. Much like the fact that the H.S.P.C. was built by assassins trying to survive during the start of a new Ice Era. I think that was also a mix of bad and good.
So here you have it... A story about redemption, and forgiveness, and maybe becoming a better person. I've been both the enemy and the savior. My time in Afghanistan showed me that to one small town I was there to help, but in another, I was there to destroy. Perhaps in writing Tea's story I was looking for a little of my own redemption too.
Below is the button to watch the book trailer if you have not seen it, and a button if you want to pop on Amazon to buy this story. (Note that Ben Around Books sells copies that I will sign for you.) This book is a companion to 2:05 a.m. An Ice Era Chronicle. Teagan was captured at the end of that book as a criminal. If you're just picking up this chronicle, you might consider checking out 1:05 a.m., Grinding My Gears, 2:05 a.m., and Raiden Out The Storm.
Thanks again all!
Hey my friends!
Today I get to share the new cover for Two For Tea An (Off-The-Rails) Ice Era Chronicle.
I am so excited to show this off! This cover really says "Tea" to me.
If you are a reader of the Ice Era Chronicles, you might remember Tea from the end of 2:05 a.m. She was the one that was trying to save "Mother" the woman who was the head of The Originals. This book is her story. Here is part of the first chapter. Keep in mind it might still have a mistake or two but I just had to share! Two For Tea will be coming out at the end of August.
Place: Train platform outside Water Base Azul in the Northern Earth Dens, C.T.O.N.A. (Confederate Territories of North America)
Time: 1:55 a.m.
Tea pulled her coat tighter over her blood-soaked clothes. She wove through the busy hallways of her home water base and neared the main entrance. Her eyes stayed glued to the cement floor as she passed the guards. She must get past the men who checked folks into the main gate without being observed. Tea made sure not to make eye contact with anyone. Being noticed was never good. At the age of eighteen, she’d learned that “noticed” equaled beatings.
The bandage around her neck slipped. Tea put pressure on the torn skin near her collar. She prayed the blood flow would slow. Dizziness stole her confidence that she could get out of the base before the H.S.P.C. agents saw the dead bodies. Ducking quickly onto the train platform, she dodged a man carrying a door and noted a set of harvester trains parked ahead of her. She scurried toward the first train right as the vehicle’s whistle blew. The ear-piercing shriek bounced off the rock ceiling of the room, but for how loud the sound was, the screech also gave her a surge of hope.
At the last second, Tea changed direction. She picked the train that appeared ready to leave the tracks. The huge vehicle was also a harvester train, but longer than the one she’d spotted up ahead. Her hand slipped over the metal handlebar as she hoisted herself up into the train car. Once inside, she wiped the blood on her palms by rubbing them on the front of her pants. After her hands were clean, Tea yanked her sister’s floor-length jacket tightly around her small frame. When she appeared in the first train car, only five men looked up at her hurried entrance. She kept her head down and slipped through to the next area.
The new space had some type of game in progress.
Three men had their pants around their ankles. Their bare asses shone white in the poorly lit train car. Another group of three harvesters was on the opposite side of the area. They threw an oblong orange ball at the genitals of the bent over men. The ball hit the man in the middle. When the ball struck his sack, he dropped to his knees as he screamed in pain. Laughter and cheers went up. Huge handfuls of HOCs exchanged between the men.
“Who are you?” A young dark-skinned man leaned on a tall carved walking-stick. His eyes scanned Tea. She jumped then scrambled out of the car. Tea didn’t know what to do but talking to anyone was bottom on her list. Right now, the urge to fight prickled under her skin and she didn’t even know why. It was time to run.
Ignoring the way her muscles bunched, Tea exited the boisterous train car. When she opened the door to the next room, she realized this space was vastly different than the openness of the previous area.
The narrow hall was strangely quiet, and it only included one person. A poised woman stood with her back to Tea.
“Mother.” From a white pocket door to Tea’s right, an older man in his sixties with a stock of white hair came out of the room. The stranger paid no attention to Tea as he scurried down the hall toward the strange lady. The speaker came to a stop in front of the regal woman in the thin green skirt. From Tea’s vantage point, the willowy woman he referred to as “Mother” couldn’t be that guy’s mom. This lady was way too young to have a sixty-year-old child.
“Mr. Putnam.” The dignified lady inclined her head, but the movement was barely an acknowledgment.
“Where is the Snow Flu suit I asked for?”
“My apologies. I couldn’t get one.”
“That is a lie. Why bother to lie to me? I can see the future.”
“No, Mother, I mean it.” The older man shook his head. “Honest. I don’t have one for you.”
“That is more true. You have it, but you’re using it and do not want to give it to me.” She spoke as if considering every word that left her mouth. “As you wish.” She shrugged then pointed to the door directly next to her. “You can go into my private quarters and give Weaver water as you are. No suit.”
“But I... I…” the old man stammered. “I can’t do that. Weaver has Snow Flu. I’ll get Snow Flu if I go in there. I’ll die. Let the harvester die instead.”
“You’ve made your decision.”
“Mother, please. What can I do?” Putnam asked.
“Do? You’ve given the suit to your children. You’re using it, but the protective gear wasn’t for you. Weaver will have the cure to Snow Flu, and for the greater good, we must keep that harvester alive and with us. Your wife and children must be sacrificed.”
“Mother.” Putnam looked around the hall like another set of gear would appear. He was screwed. Only the H.S.P.C. had those outfits. “I can get another one.”
“You’re out of time. Now you must go into my sleeping quarters and care for Weaver until either he is better or until you die of Snow Flu.”
“Or?” Putnam ran his hand through his white hair in agitation.
“Or you can die out here.” Mother patted the door lovingly. “You will die one way or another for disappointing me. I don’t accept anything other than complete servitude. I am Mother, Head of The Originals. Only I know the way the world will heal from Snow Flu. I alone know the way out of the ice. I will stay on this path. We must continue this way if we are to survive the ice that seeps toward Earth’s heart.”
“I can’t go in there,” Putnam begged. “I have a family.”
Tea found herself holding her breath.
“You made your choice.” With a quick yank of her arm, Mother pulled a metal item from the pocket of her long green skirt. There was a flash of a silver blade right before the knife sliced into the belly of the other man.
Putnam stumbled backward holding the knife handle in his stomach. He gurgled a few words and then dropped to his knees.
“Mother,” he gasped.
Tea was still staring at the dying man when Mother turned around. Her eyes zeroed in on Tea like Mother knew she was there the whole time. Tea jumped. Her heart started to pound. Even though she wanted to flee, her muscles refused to do anything.
Mother slowly approached. The lady drifted down the hall like she had all the time in the world. Tea held the bandage tighter around her neck. Quickly, she tried to read the other woman like she used to decode her grandma when she was in a foul mood. There was something about this stranger, however. Mother was an enigma. The lady could be young or old, tall or short. There was a mystical veil over the stranger. The only feeling she got from the other woman was that there was an essence of power and control that rolled off Mother. If she had only one word to describe Mother it would be authority.
“Teagan.” Mother stopped in front of Tea. Again, that power wafted from her like perfume.
“I…” Tea stammered. “How do you know my name?”
“I’ve been waiting for you. You’re a little early.”
“I am?” Tea glanced around. All she could hear was the gurgle of the dying man on the floor and the swish of the train.
“You’ve just turned eighteen, right?” She smiled. “So naive for one so old.” Mother glanced back at the man on the floor then to Tea again. “And you’re looking for your sister? Teresa.”
“Yes, my sister.” Tea exhaled relief. That’s how Mother must know so much about Tea. She met Teresa. “Have you seen her?”
“I’ve seen her. We can talk about Teresa.” She pointed to the far door. “But first we’ll clean you up and bandage your neck properly. Once you do a few favors for me, then I can take you to Teresa. I help you after you help me. That’s how this...” Mother paused. “You like the term game. So, that’s how this game will be played.”
“You’ll fight for me, like a junkyard dog.” Mother offered Tea her hand. “You’ll be my protector. Your gift is growing inside of you even as we speak. Soon you will crave the battles, and I’ll give you what you need. You will eat, sleep, and breath the violence until only two things bring you peace.”
“What two things?”
Mother shrugged then extended her hand a tad closer. “You won’t find them on a train.” She laughed to herself.
Tea stared at the slim, delicate fingers in front of her. This lady’s words didn’t make any sense. She also didn’t want to take the offer, but Tea had to find her sister. When she found Teresa, Tea would say she was sorry and fix what happened. “I don’t want to fight anyone.”
“Soon the urge will take over, and you won’t be able to control it.” Mother laughed another throaty chuckle like Tea had told a joke.
“I just need to find my sister.”
“I’ve seen your sister. Come with me, and I will help you.”
Tea would have to play this game. Her eyes dropped to Mother’s outstretched hand.
***Thanks for Reading!!!***
So... We are working on the cover of the next book. Monica and I really think it's cool. I can't wait to share it with all of you.
Once I have the final copy in my hand, we will be doing all the fun prizes for the Read4Review Event.
I have noticed that the Read4Review Events are getting harder as I go along. I know this is because as I write further into the series these books do not stand alone. That kinda bums me out.
I think I am improving as a writer. It's sorta a shame that I can't give someone Tea's book and be like "Check this bad-boy out!!!" They would end up reading it and being all like "Who the hell is this person?"
I get it. But still...
Anyway, this book was such fun to work on and I really love when you have a character like Teagan who is the enemy, but you get to see it from her perspective. Tea really grew on me as I wrote her story. The deeper I went into her hardships and how she saw the world, the more she became a part of me. With out spoilers here, I will say that at the end of the book when H.S.P.C. agents come to finish her execution... I cried. In fact, I cried when I wrote it, I cried when I edited it, and I cried when my editor had me work on the ending. I just love Tea.
I hope if you pick up this book you fall in love with her as much as I did.
People (Well, writers) say that the thing that distracts them the most from their writing is the internet. Now don't get me wrong, I love the internet, it's a great tool, but that isn't what stops me from getting work done.
I just finished Two for Tea An (Off-The-Rails) Ice Era Chronicle and when I got done, I thought I would get started right away on my next book. I love to write. It is my outlet. I sat down at my computer and then my life distracted me.
So... now I'm going to share with all of you about why I'm not writing one blooming word!
My eldest daughter, Capi, has this friend who we will call "Amy". Amy is sweet and helpful and kind. I have known her for a while now. She comes over to the house and when she hangs out with Capi and Sam they do what all teens do. They eat my food and kick me off the TV. I don't mind at all. In fact, you can thank Amy for all my writing because when she was watching a show I don't love, I would simply think it was time for me to get to work.
Anyway, so Amy was hanging out and then she gets into a fight with her Grandmother. On a side note, Amy lives with her Granny because her mother isn't around. That might be a story for another blog. This story is about me complaining.
Back to Amy and the Grandma... Amy shows up and tells me that her grandma kicked her out and the two of them are in a fight. I'm like sure. Amy is 14 and things like that happen sometimes. At which point, her grandmother shows up on my doorstep and I find this is true. The two of them are not getting along at the moment. The lady is on my front walk telling me she needs a break and she is over whelmed. I think okay. This little old lady needs some time, so what the heck, I tell Amy she can stay and hang out. Amy curls back up on the couch with her knitting and that's that.
Every one is happy with this for three weeks. I don't see the whites of the grandma's eyes. Amy eats, knits, and watches TV. I swear she is the most low-key 14-year-old I have ever met. I start writing.
And then one day I have the cops at my door.
The grandma has called Amy a runaway, I guess. Which is odd because she knew where Amy was the whole time. She had my number. I simply don't get it. The whole thing gets even more odd when the grandma gets all pissed at me because I offer to let Amy take her knitting project home with her. Are you kidding me???
The whole situation was surreal. I have the cops trying to be scary. (I'm not worried, I did nothing wrong.) And I have the grandma pissed over a knitting project. (WTF???) and I have little Amy crying her eyes out because the cops told her that if she ever leaves home again she will be locked up.
I've watched some screwed up things in the army. I have seen people do some weird crap, but this was some serious petty vindictiveness that made me want to move out of my town.
The grandmother has since taken Amy and turned her in to a shut in. Not that I'm surprised. And my whole family are not allowed to see her again. Also, not surprised. So I guess I am back to binge watching TV since Amy isn't stopping me any more.
If you want to blame the slowness of the next book, come to Paynesville and I will point you in the house of this Grandma and you can go tell her she is the problem. I miss Amy.
I'm back to writing now. I had to take a break while I shared Raiden Out The Storm. I am working on another Off-The-Rails which I think I told all of you about it.
I know the people who are waiting for 3:05 a.m. are getting slightly annoyed with me, but these Off-The-Rails just sometimes bug me. The idea for the story gets under my skin and then I can not stop my self from working on them. So... I will have Tea's book up next and then directly after that I wanted to shoot out a little Christmas book that I've been playing around with. It's call A Christmas Cup Of Joe.
Once all that is settled, it will be time for 3:05 a.m. (I promise.)
In 3:05 a.m. you will get to meet Rourke. If you have read Raiden Out The Storm, you will recall that Morgan-Roth is looking for his child. Well... here he is.
You just have to wait for it!
So if you want a free download of Raiden Out The Storm An (Off-The-Rails) Ice Era Chronicle... you are in the right place. You can now sign up to get a free copy of the book and then win prizes! All you have to do is sign up and follow the directions once you are done reading the book.
I know some of my readers won't love this book... but that's okay. If you are interesting in something a little different, this is for you. This story follows Raiden as he falls in love with a woman named Ash Winsor and her male best friend Stone.
Here is a blurb:
In the kind of rough and tumble life they lead, Raiden knows there is no place for love…
Raiden refuses his connection to Ash Winsor. She’s mean. She insults him. And she carries a big gun. He won’t have her. He should get away from her, but how? As soon as they can find the man who tied their heartstrings together, they’ll go their separate ways. All they have to do is get to H.S.P.C. Headquarters and pay him off. Raiden hopes that once he’s free, he’ll be able to go back to trekking on the surface of the planet and sending money home to his dad. He should be able to forget all about Ash and her handsome shadow.
Love has kept Stone as Ash Winsor’s shadow for two years. He can’t bring himself to leave even though the relationship is painful and going in circles. When he finds out that Ash is now tied to another man, Stone wants nothing more than to see Raiden gone. Together they will both follow King Winsor from train to train. Stone is hoping against hope that the rough and troubled harvester will one day choose him, and Raiden will no longer be at their side.
Lying has become as natural to Ashley Winsor as breathing. Ash had made sure Stone thinks she’s a man. She has also made sure Raiden doesn’t know how much she needs him. If Ash can just make the trek to the headquarters building, she'll be free of the two men who want her more than anything. The only problem is, the closer she gets, the more she wonders if she wants them gone.
When I first started working on this piece, I found myself a little surprised at where the story took me, but that was fun. In the end, I was pleased to see them all figure it out!
Anyway... if you want to give it a try... you can do that for FREE! Just sign up to join our Launch Team!
I'm sorry I've not been on here blogging away... I have a good excuse, if you want to hear it.
I've been writing.
So... I've been busy working on my newest book Raiden Out The Storm. This is my next off-the-rails novel. This book is a threesome, MMF, which was a challenge to write. When I first started on the book, I didn't plan to write a threesome. I didn't actually plan to write this book at all. After I finished 2:05 a.m. I wanted to write a book for the other head of The Originals. At the end of 2:05 a.m. Teagan, Mother's right hand, is captured by the H.S.P.C. and sentenced to be given Snow Flu. After I wrote the last line of 2:05, I knew without a doubt that I wanted to tell you Teagan's story. I wanted you to know why she did what she did. I got to work on that book right away. I was about 43,000 words into it, when I was suddenly hit with the need to write about Raiden (pronounced Ride-in)
If you don't remember, Raiden Muttson (Mutt) is a secondary character from 2:05 a.m. He's the harvester who helps Arrow and Nova on their train. I can't explain exactly why the need to write a story for him hit me, but once the idea sunk it's teeth into me, it wouldn't let go. So I left Teagan's book and began working on Raiden Out The Storm.
Now the time has come to share this new book. I have to say, I was nervous about it. I'm a straight man attempting to write a threesome with a bi-sexual character. Not something I thought I'd be doing, but it was my sister Meghan and her daughters who were the most encouraging.
My wife and I had talked about this book, and when I mentioned that I was concerned about the judgments I'd get creating this work, she told me that my sister Meghan and my nieces, thought I was trendy. They said I should just write and not worry about others. I've heard that advice before. People always say that you should write what amuses you and forget about the critiques, but this warmly supportive response coming from my family was the antidote I needed.
I don't have a close relationship with my family, not like my wife and her siblings, and to hear them be so kind and helpful inspired me to write. A big thank you to Meghan, Kaelie, Fiona, and Elica. And even a thank you to Joel for being the devils advocate about this piece.
Raiden Out The Storm is now finished and with my publisher. Once it's polished, the book will be out and I will be back to Teagan's story. Even though I took a break, I do still have the urge to finish that book. I can't wait to tell you about her too!
I have signed my name in my books before, don't get me wrong, but I went to my first official-ish book signing in Buffalo, MN. I had a table and everything! I wanted to share that with all of you.
Okay... so to start with I had four different people walk by me and tell me that they've "read all of that guy already" and "I already read his newest book." Can I just say, that was the funniest thing ever! I had only just gotten my hands on 2:05 a.m. yet somehow they'd already read it. I decided not to correct them. I mean they sorta made me feel famous. I was already "old hat" to them like a seasoned author... then again, I started to feel bad for seasoned authors who get these people giving them the brush off.
Anyway, then I had lunch. I feel like the cake I had was the highlight of the event. Just saying...
After the cake, I met this lady who was a hardcore hockey mom. She and I talked about the Wild and the North-stars for at least twenty minutes. Did she buy a book, you ask?
And then I went home.
Actually, I'd do it again. In fact, I'm planning to be at an event called "Girls Just wanna have fun!" on November 10th. It's a hunter's widow kinda thing. If you don't know what a "hunter's widow" is, I'll tell you. It's when all the man-folk go off after deer opener and all the women are left to their own amusement. I think it normally involves wine.
Anyway, one thing I hope for...
I hope there's cake.
My Book List:
All dates are subject to change.