The Forsaken Templar is coming

It’s coming, I promise. The Forsake Templar (Demons Rising: Book 2) is on its way. Life happened and set me back a bit, but I hope to have it up for sale within the next two week. In preparation, I’ve been playing with the cover – tweaking the design. I thought you might like to see it.

Enjoy:

 

Until next time,

Steve

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Price drop!

I’ve just dropped the price of my first book, Swiftly Beats the Heart, to $.99 for the Kindle version. I’m hoping to pick up a few more sales and generate some more interest. I really just love the idea that people are reading my words, and I’m hoping this price will make it more appealing for people to pick up and try my writing.

I’m also hoping for a few more reviews on Amazon, GoodReads, Etc….honest reviews from people I don’t know. It’s really the only way I’ll know if my writing is any good. I love my family and the many friends that told me how much they liked the story, but I really need unbiased opinions and true critique if I am going to advance as an author. I’m under no delusions that I’m writing great literature. I’m just at the start of this new venture, and any feedback, even a 1-star, scathing review, would probably be beneficial.

So, here we go…$.99. Buy it here: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0077T6F06

Thanks,

Steve

Templer Time

The past few days I’ve been working on the final edit on The Forsaken Templar. It’s the second book in the Demons Rising series, and picks up the saga pretty much right after the events in There’s no such thing as Werewolves. I actually wrote this story before I wrote Werewolves, so I’m adding Anna, Jack, JJ, and the other characters from that book into the storyline. Characters I know and love, but that I hadn’t created when I first wrote the story. In fact the only character from Werewolves that originally appeared in Templar is Nathan Gray, and I think you’re going to love what I do with him in this story.

The world of the Demons Rising Saga is much more vivid in my mind now, and I love where the story is taking me. I have a bit of a start on a third book, but I am undecided as to whether it will actually be the next book in the series. Demons of Dusk takes place far into the future and is centered on the child conceived in Werewolf. There might be other tales I need to write between these two books. It’s something I’ll be considering over the summer.

In any case, I hope to have The Forsaken Templar out for sale in the next two or three weeks. I will probably not have another book out after that until next fall. This summer I will be reworking Son of Thunder. and querying it to agents. My self-publishing experiment has been fun and educational, but I still want to try and go the traditional route with this novel. We will see.

Believe me, I know I’m no Amanda Hocking, but I do feel the wheels of progress starting to turn. It’s always a kick to know that someone out there might be reading my stories.

Until next time,

Steve

An interview with Gary Henson

Today I’m starting a new phase in my blogging – going beyond the ‘me,’ stepping out into the broader field of publishing in general. I’ll still be bringing you all the latest in my own writing experiences, but I hope to also interject some other new voices to the site.

I’m privileged to have with me today Gary Henson, author of the new Science Fiction novel, Genome. Gary, welcome to A Writer’s Haven.

Thanks so much, Steve. Being interviewed is kind of a bizarre concept for me but I think I like it!

Let’s start out by getting to know you a bit. Who is Gary Henson?

I was born in a small town in the Texas panhandle and then moved to Boulder in the mid 60s.

I joined the Navy in 1970, at the age of 17, to be a nuclear submarine machinery operator. Fancy term for mechanic. I served on several subs on both coasts and then exited for the civilian life.

My first job out of the service was repairing air compressors. Then I worked on a computer tape drive assembly line and went on to other ‘odd’ jobs where I got bitten by the software bug.

I’ve been a software developer since 1980 when I worked as an electronics test machine programmer. I’ve programmed embedded 4 and 8-bit widgets, wrote PC drivers for tablets and plotters for Hitachi and too many other projects to recount. I’ve always loved the creative part of programming. Developing software is the next best thing to writing. You get to use your imagination and the rewards are usually instant. Nice.

I’ve been married for 41 years to my high school sweetheart, Debbie. We have two amazing daughters. I enjoy spoiling my granddaughters and handing them back to their parents.

You sound like a busy man. How much time do you spend writing?

I plop my butt on the couch with my laptop almost every night and write while I watch TV with Deb. On weekends I try to dedicate at least part of the day to writing, working on my blog or learning more about the ePub world.

Okay, the book is called Genome. It looks like a science-fiction, techno-thriller, with ghosts and a hint of romance. It sounds fascinating. Tell us a little about it.

The story centers around a trio of characters; Jack, Frankie and Emily. They grow up like typical teens in Boulder Colorado, with dreams of starting a company together. Jack and Emily become closer as time goes by; the ‘first kiss’ romance we all share. Their dreams seem to be coming true as they enter CU as engineering students. Then Emily is murdered and Jack’s world falls apart.

The story moves forward with Jack and Frankie becoming partners in a bio-genetics research company. The ‘Geek Squad’, the company software team develops an AI to control the research laboratory and like all geeks go way off into left field, actually creating a sexy personality for ‘PIP’, the AI.

Things are going great until Emily’s ghost haunts the dreams of a pretty medium, Samantha.  At this point Jack and Frankie are drawn into Sam’s world of spirits and nightmares. It seems Emily’s killer is back.

Jack Thomas sounds like an interesting character. Is he anything at all like you?

Sure. Handsome, intelligent, fun loving, good sense of humor, full head of hair and of course, humble. I think every author draws on parts of his soul when he writes. And I added things into Jack’s character that I wish I had, like a great memory. My memory is barely above the average aquarium fish. I rely on dogged tenacity to overcome my lack of mental dexterity. But Jack does have my curiosity and ‘what if’ traits. He trusts his intuition and will try to find an answer even while stumbling in the dark.

So, Gary, where did you get your idea for the story?

It started as a screenplay actually. In 2005 I decided I needed something that was NOT work related to do, as a hobby I guess. I’m an avid reader and I grew up reading Heinlein, Asimov, Clark and other ‘hard’ SciFi authors. I’ve been writing software since the days of the Apple and TSR80. I also have a passion for reading about genetics and bio engineering. How life works at every level fascinates me.  How do billions and billions of cells make up a functioning plant or human.

Is the red I see the same red you see? Why do some people see or hear things the rest of us don’t?

So I mixed my passions together and played around with the idea that genetic traits could be analyzed and manipulated using a sophisticated artificial intelligence controlling a lab and a kick ass holo-room. Trust me you’re going to like PIP and the modeling room.

I eventually hit upon a story line that seemed plausible and fun. Most of all I wanted the story to be fun.

And the AI software is an actual character in your story?

Yes. ‘PIP’ became one of my central characters and a great way to move parts of the story forward. I had an absolute blast bring ‘her’ into the story a little at a time. I think your readers will enjoy how she evolves during the story and the slightly sexy take I’ve put on AIs. The story isn’t about PIP but she’s deeply interconnected with the characters and provided me with some great ‘what if’ opportunities. She’s the subject of one of my blog posts, check it out.

As a teaser to your readers I’ll also say that PIP and the Geek Squad carry on into the next book. I’ve got a great outline for several more stories as well as a back story. Stay tuned!

That sounds great, Gary. Thank you for taking the time to visit with us today. The book is Genome, and it’s available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Follow Gary’s blog at: http://garyalanhenson.blogspot.com/ 

Buy the book at Amazon for Kindle.

Buy the book at Barns & Noble for Nook

The hardest part of writing is…

When I started writing, over thirty years ago, I remember thinking that if I could just finish the rough draft…I would be almost there. After all, lots of people start writing a book, but most never finish. This has got to be the hardest part of writing.

Fast forward to about twenty years ago: It’s finished. (It’s also wretched. Believe me, you will never see this first novel, at least not in its current form.) I pick the publisher I want to publish it, and send it off. It will sell, right? Most people don’t finish their novels. This one is done. Any problems they will have a professional editor fix, and I’ll be published and rich. But the waiting…this has got to be the hardest part of writing.

The rejection letter arrives. What? They couldn’t see my brilliance among all the typos, bad grammar, and poor description? Rejection sucks. I’m done with writing. Pack it away along with all my dreams. This is most definitely the hardest part of writing.

But I can’t stop writing. Over the next twenty years I make numerous starts on countless stories. Life keeps getting in the way and I keep packing it up/putting it off. Finding the time to write…that is the hardest part of writing.

Then, two years ago…RETIREMENT! Time to write. Stories get finished and polished. I finish Templars Gate (The Forsaken Templar). I even find an agent. This is it. The big time! I write There’s no such thing as Werewolves and Son of Thunder. But nothing sells. Communication breaks down. I feel like I’m beating my head against the wall. I have sequels in my brain, but it’s no use writing them unless I can sell the first. What can I write that will sell? Am I really an author? The questions…the self doubt…this has got to be the hardest part of writing.

I start entering contests, submitting for anthologies, and I get my first big break. September 29, 2011. My short story, A Requiem for Poseidon sells! It’s to a small online publisher. The book will probably only be available digitally. But it’s a sale. Twenty-five whole dollars! I have made money with my writing. I am a professional. “So, when is the book coming out?” I am asked continually. “Soon…” is all I can answer. (It’s been seven months and I still do not have a release date.) Once again, waiting is the hardest part of writing.

I part ways with my agent, and start the search for another. I have stuff now, a body of work. Two completed novels, three completed novellas, and more starts than you can shake a stick at. Though why people would want to shake a stick at anything is beyond me. I go to work every day. I don’t consider myself retired anymore. I’m a writer…an author. It’s what I do…what I am. I have two books published (and a short story in an anthology ‘coming soon’). There’s a ton of stuff I need to do, a mountain of stories I need to write, and it’s all hard work.

This isn’t the blog I started out to write. It evolved as I wrote it, as my writing tends to do. What I realized this morning, sitting here at my computer, is that the hardest part of writing…is believing in yourself.

Believe!

Steve

Now in print!!

It’s finally ready, and I think it looks great!

There's no such thing as Werewolves

There’s no such thing as Werewolves is now available in print at: https://www.createspace.com/3826085

It should also be available soon (5 – 7 days) on Amazon.com if you prefer to buy it there.

Of course, the Kindle edition is still available here: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007KAE45A

I am so excited about this release. I’ll now have two books available in print to take with me to meets and signings and such. Also now that I’m done with Werewolves I can turn my full attention on The Forsaken Templar, which is the sequel to There’s no such thing as Werewolves and the next story in the Demons Rising Saga.

Remember, you can always check my Worlds of S. C. Mitchell page for the status of any of my books.

It’s a good day!

Steve