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Blog Update

Wyvacon Weekend


This weekend’s Wyvacon schedule looks pretty exciting. I know I’m looking forward to a good time.

Bonus — Wyvacon has said that anyone under the age of 16 gets in for free with one adult paid admission. So if you pay for your ticket, your three kids get in for free. It’s that family-friendly.

It’s Wyvacon Weekend!

Saturday

10:00AMBreakout Room 1/2 — Kickoff w/ GoH Jason Cordova: We’re going to be just kicking things off here. No idea what we’ll talk about. Basically, I’m just going to be wishing everyone a great time while letting the Board of Directors welcome everyone.

11:00AMBreakout Room 1/2 — Mad Libs with Jason Cordova: Mad Libs are always fun. Since I’m keeping this PG-13 at the most, we’re going to be doing some creative things. Who knows? We could even build up a plot for a book!

3:00PMBreakout Room 1/2 — Four Horsemen Awesomeness with Jason Cordova: What’s the Four Horsemen Universe (4HU), you ask? It’s only one of the hottest properties in publishing at the moment, with almost 70 books in print from 20+ authors and no signs of slowing down. It’s on Kindle Unlimited as well, so you can read all of them on KU for free.

Cards Against Humanity at the pub with Jason Cordova (Guest Judge). I think this starts at 7pm at 7 Dogs Brewpub in Wytheville. 18+ please. I may or may not be impartial during the judging period.

Sunday

11:00AMBreakout Room 1/2 — Future projects with Jason Cordova: This is probably going to be a good one. I’ve got SO MANY FREAKING PROJECTS right now that we’ll have no problems with filling up the entire hour with what the heck I’ll be doing next. From 4HU books to Kin Wars to Monster Hunter Memoirs, we’ll be covering quite a bit.

12:00PMBreakout Room 1/2 — Mad Libs with Jason Cordova: I’m totally going to hijack this panel and talk to new and aspiring authors who want to get into the business but can never seem to get past the “gatekeepers”, including a huge push for my publishers on how to get in with them. Yes, spreading insider information on how to get published is my jam.

1:00PMBreakout Room 1/2 — Nerf Fun: I get to shoot people? AWESOME! I promise not to dance over your corpse like in GTA V.

2:00PMBreakout Room 1/2 Closing Remarks with Jason Cordova: We won’t be getting together and singing kumbaya, but at least we’ll get to talk about how AWESOME Wyvacon was and talk about what’s going to happen next year (hint: I won’t be the GoH but I will be attending. They can’t get rid of me that easily. Cordova in Spanish means fungus. Really).

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Blog Update

Release Day


Yeah, I don’t normally see a book release on a Monday, but this is a special case. Today, the Salvage Universe anthology, IT TAKES ALL KINDS, was released into the wild. Created by Kevin Steverson, the first three books (SALVAGE TITLE, SALVAGE FLEET, and SALVAGE SYSTEM) have been optioned for a movie already and is already generating buzz.

Here’s a list of all the authors involved.

  • Kevin Steverson
  • William Webb
  • Alex Rath
  • Quincy J. Allen
  • Marisa Wolf
  • Chris Woods
  • Rob Howell
  • Ian Malone
  • Tim C. Taylor
  • Melissa Olthoff
  • Mark Stallings
  • Robert E. Hampson
  • Jason Cordova
  • Benjamin Tyler Smith

It’s my first foray into the Salvage Universe and I had a lot of fun writing my story. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Pick up a copy today.

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Blog Update

Release Updates


The release date was bumped up for “IT TAKES ALL KINDS“, an anthology set in Kevin Steverson’s Salvage Universe. It’s now coming out on September 13. I’ll have a link up once it goes live. I have a short story in this titled “A Most Dangerous Game.” Fun little short story of “who’s the best killer?”

I should have my panel schedule for Wyvacon up by Monday. I don’t know precisely what they are just yet, but I do know I’ll be on three panels Saturday and three on Sunday, plus my judging the Cards Against Humanity game on Saturday night. Between those times I’ll be around slinging books for those who want to buy them. I’ll also have a few challenge coins with me for sale as well.

Wyvacon will also be my final convention of 2021. Usually Dragoncon is my last but due to the unnamed virus of unspecified origins Wyvacon was bumped back to September. Hey, fine by me. Cooler weather is always best.

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Blog Update

The Kin Wars on Kindle Unlimited


This links to KU collection. Click the link. Click it. Cleeeeeeeeeeeek it.

My publisher, Theogony Books, moved all of the Kin Wars books back onto Kindle Unlimited today. We’re super excited about this because it means those who prefer to read primarily through the KU program can now delve into the Espinoza family adventures.

Yes, authors still get paid if you read in KU. The more people who read, the more we get paid.

Awww yeah.

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Blog Update

WriterDojo


I know a lot of people hate on Larry Correia because of his politics, but nobody can state with any honesty that he doesn’t understand business. He and Steve Diamond (another accountant… what’s up with the accountants taking over writing?) host a weekly podcast called WriterDojo, which is designed to help out those who are struggling to become a professional writer.

For those of you who are just getting into the writing business, today’s episode on the WriterDojo podcast, “The Basics of Business“, can be really helpful. There are some good tips on how to handle contracts, advances, royalties, etc. It’s not advice nor counsel, mind you, so keep this in mind. Most of what they talk about are their own experiences and they’ll even clarify that they are not telling you what to do, just more along the lines of what to watch out for.

Here is a link to WriterDojo. There are 3 episodes already. Pretty good stuff.

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Blog Update

URBICIDE — Coming Sept 3


My sometimes co-author/editor Jamie Ibson has a book coming out this Friday. It’s his first ever standalone book in his own universe. You want to get in on the ground floor of some sweet, sweet all-new cyberpunk? This is your chance.

Available this Friday on Amazon — URBICIDE, Book One of Myrmidons, Inc.

Also, you should sign up for his newsletter. He’s always giving away free short stories for those who sign up. He also links with others who do the same.

Why don’t I do this? Well, truth be told, I’m about to start doing it again. I’ve got two Tobias Fox stories ready and waiting, though I might combine them into a novella. We shall see.

If you want a sample of Jamie’s other work, he wrote PACIFIC SHOGUN. Samurai in a post-fallen world Seattle. What’s not to enjoy?

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Blog Update

And Then The Author Lost His Cool


It used to be amusing.

Back when I was first starting out, I kept people more up-to-date with what was going on in my every day life. Between reviewing books (and we reviewed a lot of them over at Shiny Book Review), working 100+ hours a week, maintaining some semblance of sanity in the home life (ha!), and writing books, you could say I was a busy guy. Occassionally I’d get a message of “you should be writing” whenever someone would see me online. It caused a good chuckle, a message to the person telling them to bite me, and we’d chat for a bit before I’d disappear offline once more to go do whatever it was I was doing.

Fast forward ten years, add in a much larger fan base, and now it’s a pain in the butt.

Nine times out of ten if I’m online, it’s because I’m researching something for a book. Or drawing up marketing plans for a book. Or checking the sales numbers of a book. Or talking with a publisher about a book. Or messaging a co-author… of a book. You see a pattern here? I don’t get to do the online stuff for fun anymore. As I’ve become a full-time author, everything I do online seems to be geared towards work.

So I’ve started to rebel a bit. I’ll spend some time online where I’m not working. I’ll simply scroll through messages and chuckle. I’ll actually play videogames online again (though I’m still bitter at EA for wasting my time with their latest SimCity abomination) and virtually hang out with old friends.

But then… in the midst of the night… when I am finally unwound enough to start enjoying what I do again… a message pops up.

“YoU sHoUlD bE wRiTiNg!”

(warning: bad words to follow)

Motherfucker, who the fuck do you think you are? I’ve just written for 10 straight fucking hours and I’m taking a break for the day, and you come in here with your smarmy fucking bullshit, thinking you’re cute and all, and tell me I should get back to work? Do you tell your wife this when she gets home from work? That she should get back to work because you felt like being cute with her?

Of course you wouldn’t. You don’t want to die.

I used to laugh when other authors would ask their fans not to say certain things. I mean, who wouldn’t want hundreds and thousands of fans buying their books and sharing their thoughts? It means an active fanbase, right? I never understood why it bothered big name authors when their fans made demands. Hell, I’ve even joined the jeers at George R. R. Martin to finish the damn series. And you know what? Sometimes, inadvertently, it’s a bit of a dick move.

(Disclaimer: I’m not excusing him, mind you. He was the one stupid enough to tell people they could lock him up in a cage if he didn’t finish the book. Don’t make promises you know you have no intention of keeping.)

Look, even back in the day, guys like Asimov and Heinlein would take breaks from writing to be involved in the world around them. Be it writing letters to other authors, reading their contemporaries, or even running a editorial or a magazine, they found other outlets besides creating novels and stories to take some of the stresses and burdens off. Fast forward 70-80 years and we’re much more technologically advanced than they were. We can surf the web and do all our research in a matter of minutes (cursory research, mind you… for historians, when we go down the rabbit hole, we typically lose the entire day). So when we’re on various social media platforms unwinding, it means we’re probably not working.

The last thing we probably need is someone telling us “You should be writing.”

It’s worse when they attach the Avengers meme of them pointing. You know the one.

If we’re online, don’t bug us about our writing. Instead, maybe ask us how our pets are doing? If we want to talk about how much we should be writing, we’ll tell you.

Really.


WINTERBORN is pretty much wrapped up. It’s the longest Kin Wars novel to date. After edits and whatnot it should get down to 100,000 words or so. There’s some stuff in there I might move to the next book, not sure. HAMMERFALL is definitely going to be more intense than WINTERBORN, though, and some unanswered questions from HOMEGUARD will finally be answered.

In other news, sold another short story to an anthology coming out this year. THE GHOST WOLF OF DEEP ELEVEN is my take on the old “moon’s haunted” joke, only on a space station where it’s pretty much Jayne from Firefly meets the Dukes of Hazzard. It will be in the And Then It Got Weird anthology edited by Jamie Ibson, being published by Blood Moon Press this October. That raises my publication count for the year to four, though no novels in 2021.

That’s because the plan right now is to have something like 7 new novels (at least) come out next year. Yes, 2022 will be the Year of the Cordova. If I push this winter, it could get up to 10 novels, and that’s not counting the short stories I know I’ll be writing as well. Speaking of, I have a Dec 31 deadline for one of them. Plenty of time.

Pleeeeeenty of time.

There also could be a move in the near-future, but we won’t know more about that for a bit longer. A move would definitely derail the 10 books in 2022 plan, but I could still manage the 7 books.

Yeah, that would be my luck. Finally get a new roof and then it’s time to move.

Cats are doing fine. Still not fully understanding why Charlotte and Curly hate each other. I never thought Casper would be the peacekeeper in the house, yet here we are. On the other hand, I’m very, very tempted to get a puppy just to cause chaos and havoc in the house. If I was certain about the move, I’d make a decision.

Getting a Great Dane puppy right before a move, however, would be bad.


And now, a word from our sponsors…

From the creative minds of Jason Cordova and Jamie Ibson…

Before Hr’ent Golramm became a legendary Enforcer for the Peacemaker Guild, he was a mere candidate. Granted, he was a particularly unusual candidate—only six Oogar had ever successfully graduated from the Peacemaker Academy on Ocono, and Hr’ent would be the seventh. Every candidate must pass a commissioning mission in order to graduate, though, and Hr’ent’s is unsolvable.

The Pushtal of Vorrhurna were once one of the Mercenary Guild’s 37 races. After a series of disastrous contracts, the tiger-like aliens lost their status as mercenaries, and the MinSha seized their home world for defaulting on their debt. Eighty years later, the seven Great Clans are but a shadow of their former selves and have resorted to piracy to survive.

For his commissioning mission, Hr’ent and a small team of bounty hunters must find a way to put a stop to their predations. No one in the Union has figured out how to herd cats to this point, but Hr’ent is a particularly unusual Peacemaker candidate, who isn’t afraid to resort to a bit of gunboat diplomacy to get the Pushtal to listen to what he says, once and for all.

Pick up your copy of GUNBOAT DIPLOMACY today.

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Blog Update

Good Morning Stench


Ah, there’s nothing quite like the smell of raw sewage in the morning.

Somewhere near my house there’s a sewer line issue. It’s not my house, thankfully. At least, I’m pretty sure it’s not. Fortunately, the smell isn’t really noticeable in my office or bedroom. Anywhere there’s an open window, though… ugh.

I’m currently taking a break from the last two chapters of WINTERBORN to get a short story I owe finished and turned in on time. THE GHOST WOLF OF DEEP ELEVEN is one of those shorts people are either going to love or hate. It’s mostly done, except for a few of the fiddly bits. Just one of those stories that started out as a joke response to a meme and went from there.

I still need to write my own CHICKS IN TANK TOPS story for my anthology. I’m getting a firmer idea of the word count needed. I’m still deciding on the title of the short, sort of. I mean, I have the title, but I’m not 100% sold on it just yet. It may change. About half of the authors have turned in their stories already, which I hear is fantastic since there’s still two weeks left. It shouldn’t be too hard and I’ll probably knock it out once I’m done with WINTERBORN.

Speaking of… I decided to delay the release for WINTERBORN and the final few books of the Kin Wars series until 2022. There are a lot of little reasons but the biggest issue I’ve had is getting the books out closer together. So the goal next year is to get them all out before Christmas, which means an April 2022 release for WINTERBORN, a June 2022 release for HAMMERFALL, an August 2022 release (unless something bigger pushes it back to September 2022) for BLOODFORGE, and an October 2022 release for BRIGHTBLADE.

The reasons BLOODFORGE might be delayed a month is because I’m guessing, based on research and past release schedules, that MONSTER HUNTER MEMOIRS: FEVER will be released from Baen Books in August 2022. This is a hunch, mind you, and not concrete. I’ve heard nothing from them on this. However, Baen historically has released Monster Hunter International books in August or September. Granted, the Monster Hunter Memoirs series were all over the place when it came to releases, but even the first one in the series came out in August, so we shall see.

If my grand plan continues to steamroll along (and it’s looking good so far), November 2022 might very well see the publication of the CHICKS IN TANK TOPS anthology. Of course, it could always be bumped back until 2023, which doesn’t bother me one bit. Hey, I get to edit an anthology for Baen. My first anthology ever, too. Once I turn it in, doesn’t matter when it comes out. It’s simply going to be awesome.

I would like to write two more books either late this year or early next, but that’s entirely dependent on timing. I know I can write a book in 3-4 weeks. The question is, how fried will I be afterward? Or better still, how much will it suck?

Fortunately, outside of another short story I promised, it doesn’t look too bad after December this year. Unless, of course, the epic fantasy series gets picked up. Then things get crazy.

I mentioned I got a new roof finally on the house, and promptly no rain for almost two months. LOL. However, it’s been raining for a few days now and the leak appears to be gone, so I’m happy to say that replacing the roof (more importantly, spending all that money… ugh) was worth it. Unfortunately, in that time without rain, I’m 99.99999% certain my lawn died and I’m going to have to re-seed it. And my refrigerator is making weird noises. And the stove…

Kids, just an FYI — home ownership is worth it, but damn is it expensive. And if someone says “Oh, it’s a cute little fixer-upper” when selling you your first home, unless you are into that sort of stuff, have all the tools and equipment necessary, run. Run as fast as you can.

The cats are doing well. Curly and Charlotte still despise each other. Considering they’re (allegedly) from the same litter, I’m sort of surprised. Casper almost died the other day, but that was due to him walking across my keyboard and rebooting my laptop in the middle of my writing, my autosave failing, which in turn cost me an entire day’s worth of work. I’m sure if he could apologize, he wouldn’t.

And now a word from our sponsor…

Fate is a cruel, fickle mistress.

Torn away from his one true love, Gabriel Espinoza will burn the galaxy to get her back. But doing so first means joining the enigmatic Wraith Corps, where he is thrust to the forefront of a terrible war against an alien threat. The only path to saving her is over the dead bodies of the invaders—if he survives.

Light-years away, his brother, Special Agent Andrew Espinoza, is recruited by a clandestine intelligence agency known only as Project Jericho. He must go deep undercover to find a dangerous threat to the Dominion of Man and eliminate it before it’s too late.

One brother fights to save his love, another to defend his nation, and both to save human civilization.

Pick up your copy of WRAITHKIN, Book 1 of the Kin Wars series, today.

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Blog Update

Dog Days


It’s tough to write during the dog days of summer. Especially when you’re like me and don’t function well in the heat. I swear my next house will have central A/C and good insulation.

I’ve been doing a lot of quiet “behind the scenes” stuff when it comes to writing the past few weeks. Primarily, I’ve been outlining and editing while slowly working on the next Kin Wars book. Outlining is simultaneously easy (due to the established universe) and hard (for the same reason as mentioned before). Continuity within the Kin Wars has always been on point, and I don’t want to screw it up now.

With WINTERBORN nearing completion, I’m already outlining the final three books of the series. I already know how it’s all going to end, which is helpful. I work best when I know the ending and can work backwards from it. The final three books, starting with HAMMERFALL, are going to be epic.

I’ve been getting stories turned in from a few of the authors in the CHICKS IN TANK TOPS anthology. I’ve also had a few minor heart attacks when authors have forgotten they’d agreed to be in said anthology. I’m starting to understand why anthology editors, as a whole, tend to be a grumpy bunch. Fortunately, I think I’m still on track for turning in the anthology on time. If I am to have any reputation, turning books in to the publisher late is not the one I want.

What’ve you all been reading lately? I just finished my reread of Jim Butcher’s Codex Alera series. It holds up pretty well. One of the things I’ve noticed more since I put on an editor hat is story structure and pacing. Lots of authors have decent story structure, but they can’t pace for crap, and the story ends up dragging its butt across the lawn like a dog with worms. Poor pacing has been the death of many new authors novels.

Also, on a final note — congratulations to my friends Gerry and Branden on getting hitched yesterday! Sorry I couldn’t attend, but thanks for livestreaming it on Twitch.

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Blog Update

It Takes All Kinds


The Salvage Universe, created by Kevin Steverson, is really expanding. I was fortunate enough to have been invited to participate in an anthology in the universe. Today the cover was revealed and it is very retro 60’s science fiction. I’m a huge fan of this style and really enjoy it.

“It Takes All Kinds” will be out sometime this fall. If you haven’t checked out the Salvage Universe yet, I’d recommend starting at the first trilogy and going from there. My short story is titled “A Most Dangerous Game”.

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Blog Update

Book Cover Reveal


WINTERBORN, Book 1 of the Kin Wars Legacy (but Book 5 in the Kin Wars Universe), by NTLT Productions. This cover is noice!

WINTERBORN will be released on November 9, 2021.

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Blog Update

Audiobook is Live


HOMEGUARD, Book 4 of the Kin Wars Saga, just had the audiobook drop over on Audible. Rob Saladino narrates the final book of the saga once more and, as usual, does a bang-up job of it. You should burn one of those audible credits on it.

Also… in the next few days I’ll be having the COVER REVEAL for the first book in the Kin Wars Legacy, WINTERBORN. I don’t have any idea if/when that’ll go up on audible, but I do know it’ll be live and for sale on November 9, 2021 in both ebook and print.

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Blog Update

Guest of Honor


I received my first Guest of Honor for a convention this coming September. I’ll be the Guest of Honor at WyvaCon, a science fiction and gaming convention in Wytheville, VA this coming September 18–19, 2021. I’ve been an attending guest the past few times I attended and always had a good time. I’m really looking forward to celebrating the return of this con. Tickets are on sale now and if you’re not looking to drop a lot of money to get into a convention, then WyvaCon might be for you.

Sept. 18 & 19, 2021

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Blog Update

A Month Already? Oops.


I’ve been taking a break from a lot of things online as I rushed to finish a short story. The story, “A Most Dangerous Game,” should be seen in an upcoming Salvage Universe anthology (created by Kevin Steverson) in the near-future. I was happy with it and the editor enjoyed the story, so hopefully the fans of this best-selling universe will as well.

In the meantime, I’m hard at work on a surprise novel. Since I found myself between projects right now, I went ahead and continued working on WINTERBORN, the next book set in the Kin Wars Universe.

A lot of people might be a tad surprised at this. Last year, CKP declined the final four books in the universe after the publication of HOMEGUARD. I didn’t fault them for it, really. It was a good break in the series, and with so many similar series out there they publish it made good business sense for them to move on. It did leave me holding a 3/4 finished novel, though. I let it sit in the Kin Wars folder on my laptop for an entire year before opening it up once more. Fresh eyes really did show me a lot, but I think the best part about it was that I found I still loved the universe I had created, as well as all of the characters. So I asked myself “why not?”

I commissioned some cover art (what I’ve seen so far of the concept sketches and designs from them are amazing) and am hiring an editor to give the book a good once-over. I’m gunning for a Nov. 9, 2021 release date which should be doable as long as I stick to my schedule. It’s my second foray into self-publishing (the first being A CHRISTMAS SURPRISE), but the first time I’ve done a “serious” SF novel with this route. I’m nervous, of course, but also stoked. Complete control over my work is both terrifying, and liberating.

In the meantime, lots of other projects in the forge being hammered and ironed out. Due date for MONSTER HUNTER MEMOIRS: FEVER, co-written by Larry Correia, is looming. I’m not too worried about it, though. Neither one of us are really known for missing deadlines. Also due around the same time is the Baen anthology I’m editing, CHICKS IN TANK TOPS. This one has me a little more concerned because I’m relying on others to turn their stories in on time. Still, each and every one of the contributors is a professional and I’m not stressing out (too much). On top of those two, I still have a JTF-13 novel to turn in before the end of the year, as well as the two Four Horsemen novels wrapping up my characters’ story arcs. Oh, and another short story for a Halloween anthology… I think it’s horror? I’m not entirely certain. I’m going to have to ask the editor.

Yeah, Cordova stays busy.

As for real life?

Little League baseball season ended with the team finishing with a 7-7 record. Not bad, all things considered. I’ve been asked to coach again next year but I’m a in a “wait and see” mode right now, because of extenuating circumstances surrounding life in general — i.e., I’m really looking at moving this year. No reason in particular. Just need access to a larger airport, which my tiny little Appalachian town does not have. Oh, and more food options.

I just got back from the beach yesterday. It was nice spending 8 days not worrying about life in general. I feel recharged and energized, as well as a strong desire to live at the beach. I lived at the beach before when I was in a group home down in Imperial Beach, CA, but this would be different. Of course, the housing costs down there could be generously described as “absolutely ridonkulous” but hey, dream big and work hard… luck finds a way of finding you.

Cats were happy to see us. Mostly. I’m pretty sure my writing partner Casper decided to pee on the brand new couch (thanks buddy) in protest of me being gone. Good thing the slip cover is washable. Still… not something you want to come home to.

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Blog Update

Book Release Day


WE SHALL RISE, the third anthology set in John Ringo’s New York Times bestselling Black Tide Rising universe, drops today.

In it you’ll find stories from Kevin J. Anderson & Kevin Ikenberry, Brendon DuBois, Jody Lynn Nye, Michael Z. Williamson & Stephanie Osborne, Mike Massa, Kacey Ezell, Christopher L. Smith & Brent Roeder, Lydia Sherrer, Brian Trent, Jamie Ibson… great stories all around, though I am particularly partial to the Catholic schoolgirls vs Zombies vs Wannabe Dictator story which happens to be on the cover. 😀

Team And More for the win.

Grab it today here and enjoy!