The End?

Right now, I’d say the odds are 75-25 that this will be my last blog post. Blogging has been a lot of fun, especially meeting the fine folks that I have through here, but sometimes, you have to wake up and realize it’s time to put away your toys.
Writing has been fun, and a decent outlet for me. Yet, on occasion, reality will haul off and slap you a good one. My face is still stinging this morning. Let me tell you, it shakes you to the core to realize that you are no better than someone from your past. In this case, it was my ex, Christine. She used to kick my ass fairly regularly. Does this mean I hit someone with my hands? God no! If I did something like that, I wouldn’t be writing this now.
No, I did something much worse: I used my words to hurt. It really fucks with my confidence and faith in myself to know I had it in me to do this. What makes it so much more disgusting? I promised this person I would never do it to them because they are getting it from another. What kind of person would do that? The worst kind. Some would say it’s okay because I was upset. I call bullshit on that. That makes it even worse. I feel absolutely like shit that I did this, yet part of me hopes I’m never forgiven by this person. I don’t think I will ever forgive myself.
Am I asking for sympathy? Hell no. forgiveness? No. Not that either. Then why am I writing this, you ask? Simple. As a warning that I’m not a good person despite what may be thought. Good people don’t violate someone’s trust. Good people don’t hurt others with their words.

What was said, you wonder? Without going into specifics, I said to this person they were acting like their abuser in not letting me choose for myself what I was going to do. Real nice, huh?

A Little About Sweet Mother

Herself
Herself
There is an epic comedian named Rebecca Donohue. She’s feckin’ hilarious, and a good friend. I discovered her through her blog Sweet Mother. When I found out she had some videos of her stand up, well, I had to hunt them up. I’m including links to some of my favorites. I’ll also why I like them. They will take you to youtube.

Let’s get to them:

From “Solo Night”. “I married your father for the green card. It’s time you know.” When ever I’m feeling like crap, that line right there makes it all seem like it’s not as bad as I thought. The way she delivers it is exquisite.

From a show in NYC. “I would get an STD in the woods.” That one had me laughing my ass off. It gets me going every time. I actually had to stop writing this post for 20 minutes so I could laugh. My jaw aches, and my ribs hurt, I was laughing so hard.

This one isn’t a video, but I think you’ll like it anyway, it’s where you can buy her CD. Holy crap, a CD? How do I even know what that is? Oh, yeah. #oldasfeck

Hailing a water taxi
Hailing a water taxi
Rebecca is an awesome lady, funny as hell, and a great friend. Go check her out. You can connect with her on Twitter, her blog and on youtube.

I hope to get her over her for an interview soon. Maybe she’ll bring more of her clips. I’ll keep you updated.

How Elizabeth Becomes A Superhero (raw, from another novel in progress)

Elizabeth and Martin slowly moved through the suspect’s apartment. Dirty clothes and dishes were piled on everything. The skittering of tiny claws signaled a mouse running past Elizabeth. She shook her head. ‘How can anyone stand to live in this squalor? Especially when they don’t have to?’ She pulled on a pair of latex gloves. Green this time. She glanced at her partner. Martin riffled through a stack of mail when a king cockroach ran over his hand. He gave a yell and shook his hand.
“Oh! Disgusting!”
“You went high-pitched,” Elizabeth said with a smirk.
“So not funny,” he said, “Did you see the size of that thing? I swear, I’m gonna be dreamin’ about Creepshow, tonight.”
“Creepshow?”
“Really?” Martin said with a grin. “Nineteen eighty-two movie. Directed by the legendary auteur George A. Romero. Written by horror master Stephan King. You’ve never heard of it?”
Elizabeth shook her head. “Nope.”
Martin shook his head. “You need to get out more.”
She cocked her left eyebrow. “Nineteen eighty-two was a long time ago.”
He chuckled again. He tossed the mail back on the stand by the front door and moved further into the suspect’s den. Kicking apart a pile of dirty clothes at the end of the couch, and recoiling from the eruption of roaches from within, he called, “Do you really think we’ll find anything linking the costumed man’s victims in here?”
Elizabeth walked into the bedroom, which was even worse than the rest of the apartment. In addition to the dirty clothes and dishes, food cartons littered the surfaces of nearly everything. Some of them had leftover – things – which were no longer recognizable. The room had a putrid stench about it. She carefully picked her way through the mess and threw open the curtains and window. She turned and the sight of a squirming mass of maggots on the bed made her gag. Just then, she heard Martin’s question.
“I sure hope so, and it’s quick,” she called in a thick voice.
Tearing her eyes from the mess on the bed, Elizabeth looked under it. ‘Odd.’ The space under the bed was perfectly clean.
Marin smirked, hearing the distress in his partner’s voice. ‘She sounds like she’s gonna hurl.’ He walked into a small room off the main one and spotted an old wooden sea chest. ‘That’s got to be over a hundred years old. I wonder if it’s unlocked.’ He squatted before the large trunk and experimentally flicked the thumb catches. Both popped open with satisfying sniks. Slowly raising the lid, he was disappointed to find the chest appeared to be empty except for a wadded up bundle of red crushed velvet. ‘Well, that sucked.’ Pushing to his feet, Martin looked around the room. Unlike the rest of the apartment, this room was immaculate. No longer distracted by the chest, the scent of orange oil could be detected. He sniffed, and then tilted his head. ‘Where is that coming from?’ He looked around the room, only now noticing the gleaming white walls and sparkling woodwork. The hardwood floor was polished to a high sheen, showing his reflection. After the rest of the apartment, this room was like an oasis. “Hey Lizzy! Come check this out! You’re not gonna believe your eyes.”
Back in the bedroom, Elizabeth spotted an old looking ring. She reached under the bed and pulled it closer to her. The tip of her green glove snagged on a jutting splinter of wood and tore. The splinter drove itself deep into her finger. Instinctively, she jerked her hand back. Unfortunately, this rammed the rogue piece of wood further in. She looked closely at the splinter, cussing under her breath. The sharp pain caused her heart to race and her breathing to shorten. The wood rose from the pad of her finger like an exclamation point. She lifted it out of her skin with a hiss of pain and further swearing. Her finger throbbed. She pulled the glove off and stuck her finger in her mouth. Just then, she heard her partner’s call, so she left the room.
Elizabeth picked her way carefully through the trash, debris and clothes until she reached the doorway of the room where Martin stood. Just as she came to a halt outside the room, a king cockroach scurried under where her foot was coming down and died with a loud pop. Martin whirled with his gun drawn. She didn’t even see him move. One second his back was to her and he was relaxed, and the next second, he was facing her with his weapon in her face.
“Be careful with that thing,” she said. “It’s not good to receive a rapid discharge in the face.”
“Really?” he said. “A premature ejaculation joke?”
She smirked. “What did you want me to see?”
Martin holstered his gun and waved his hand at the room. She looked around. ‘This room is as spotless as under the bed. I wonder why?’ Elizabeth crossed over to a bookshelf beside the bed and scanned the titles. While she did so, her partner returned to the chest.
He lifted out the pile of velvet and felt something oddly shaped within the material. He squatted and unwrapped the object. “Holy crap, Lizzy! This nut has a metal replica of Aladdin’s Lamp!”
She turned. “No way.”
Her partner gently tossed the lamp underhanded to her. Startled, she through her hands out, forgetting that she’d pulled her glove off her right hand. She fumbled at the lamp before gently cradling it in her arms. Elizabeth paused to throw a glare at him, before turning her attention to the lamp. It looked to be of a silvery bronze. ‘Odd. I’ve never seen a metal colored like this before.’ The lamp had an odd looking script running along the part where oil would be added. She turned the lamp, trying to figure out the writing.

ثلاث رغبات لا تتلقى، ثم يتم التنازل عن روحك. الدم تعلق هذه اللعنة.

“Any idea what this writing is, Marty?”
Marty shrugged. “Maybe, ‘Oi! Ten thousand years will give you such a crick in the neck?’”
She raised her eyebrow and looked over at him. “What?”
“Genie of the Lamp? Aladdin? 1992 Disney movie?”
Elizabeth laughed. “You watch Disney movies?”
“I watch all kinds of movies. I’m not an Oscar snob.”
As the two partners chatted, blood continued to ooze from Elizabeth’s finger. Some landed on the ring and was absorbed by it.
“I guess I should put this in an evidence bag.”
“You know you’re gonna catch hell from the captain for bleeding on it and touching it with your bare finger, right?”
Elizabeth looked at him blankly. “What?”
“Look at your pretty hands.”
She glanced down, eyes blinking rapidly. Her right hand was clad in a green latex glove, her left hand was bare. Further, her blood was getting all over both the ring – which she’d forgotten was in her hand – and the lamp. Her eyes flew open and she gasped, “Shit!” She hurriedly set the objects on the floor and stepped away as if they were hot.
Martin chuckled. “I wish I had a camera right now.”
She sneered and wiggled her head in disgust. Her partner laughed harder. She rolled her eyes. “Bag this for me, would you, Marty? I want to see if I can find a band aid, or something.”
“Do you really want to trust anything in here?”
“Good point. I’ll get one from the car.”

Five minutes later, finger freshly bandaged, Elizabeth returned to the dump that doubled as an apartment. She spotted Martin staring intently at something by the window. He was so entranced, he didn’t hear her approach.
“If only you were real, I’d wish for-”
“What would you wish for Marty?”
He started, actually coming off the floor a couple of inches, his body rigid. His arms flew wide, and the object he was holding popped into the air. It was the lamp, securely in an evidence bag, her blood dried to a rusty brown. Once again, he whirled around, and pointed his weapon at her heart. Without looking, Martin caught the lamp. “Are you trying to get yourself shot, Lizzy?” He holstered his weapon.
She smirked. “Come on, you have better control than that, partner.”
“Great so you’re trying to give me a heart attack. So much better.”
“So, what would you wish for, if that were a real magic lamp?” She rolled her lips inward to hide her smile.
The lieutenant tried to ignore the sparkle in her eyes and the way his heart turned over. He shrugged. “I’d wish for telepathy,” he said blithely . He tossed the lamp underhanded to her. “How about you?”
She laughed. “Oh no. I’m not gonna get into that.”
“You wouldn’t wish for a stud muffin to warm your bed at night?”
She narrowed her eyes. “No.” She tossed the lamp back to him. “Seriously. What do you wish you had?”
He caught the lamp, and looked down at it. Martin missed Elizabeth stepping over to him. “I wish I had telepathy.”
The lamp flashed quickly. His partner slapped the back of his head.
“That’s for the ‘stud muffin’ crack.”
“What?” His patented lopsided grin flashed as he rubbed the back of his head. “Put this by the door.” He handed her the lamp again. “I told you my serious wish. Your turn. Fair is fair.”
“No.” She shook her head.
“Aw, c’mon!” She continued to walk away. “Spoil sport.”
He spotted a latch hooked rug near a beat up cabinet. ‘That’s odd. Everything else in here looks fairly new. What is in there?’
Elizabeth placed the lamp on a table near the from door. Judging by the scratches on its surface, it was where their suspect had tossed his keys. “I wish I had Superman’s powers,” she murmured. “Then I could have saved all of those people in the Convention Center earlier.” She quickly turned and headed to the back of the apartment.
The lamp flashed a crimson light. Some of the fresher blood on its surface vanished.

Rob Meet Robby II

A few weeks ago, while skipping though Carroll Park – What? Yes, skipping. Feck off. – I ran into my much snarkier younger self. You can read the first meeting here. Anyhoo, I’m sitting at my favorite café yesterday, and guess who shows up? Yep. That little fecker.

I used to where these? Gah!
I used to wear these? Gah!
As he climbs up on a stool next to me, I see he’s wearing a blue and black plaid shirt, blue jeans and Jack Purcell’s. Anyone remember these? There were fecking hideous. We called them “Fish heads.”

We’re poor, fecker. He shakes his head in evident disgust. You really suck.

Thanks, Robby. I totally forgot about the linked minds thing. Oh, crap. I hope he doesn’t

Who is Rebecca? And why are you picturing her- I clamp my hand over his mouth.

Silence! I kill you!

He pulls my hand away. You can’t, dumbass. If you kill me, you kill you, too.

Heaven help me, it almost seems worth it. It’s meaningless, Robby. What do you want now?

To know more of my future, duh! You didn’t answer me the last time we spoke.

I’m still not going to.

Why not?

Because no matter how much I wish I could spare you some of the horrifying shit you’re going to have to deal with in a few years, it is going to prepare you to appreciate those you find later in life so much more.

What kind of shit?

I’m afraid I can’t tell you that, either. You might not be able to deal with it if you have foreknowledge. As much as I wish to spare you this, I’m going to have to be selfish, and not warn you. There is someone too important to me to risk losing by sparing you.

So, we did find someone. And she is worth it? The whatever I have to go through?

She’s worth that, and so much more.

That’s good. What kind of stuff can you tell me about?

There’s this cool technology that allows you to use computers by touching the screen.

Get out.

They have new TV’s. This tech makes them thinner, lighter, and prettier. They are called high-definition televisions.

60".  Weighs lbs.
60″. Weighs 120lbs.

Holy crap. Remember when they were bigger all over?

I sigh. Yes.I also remember when one cost $1200. I hate being this old.

60" CRT. Weight 450lbs.
60″ CRT. Weight 450lbs.

A Fecked Up Situation

In my early 20’s I was involved with a tiny woman named Christine. The relationship lasted for a few years. Not that it was a happy one, but because I was afraid to leave. She used to kick my ass on the regular. Hands, baseball bats, golf club, tennis racket, paddles, ladding strips, ect. I finally left when I caught her banging the guy she named as my best man on the preacher’s deck in the church, on our wedding day. Fortunately, it was before the ceremony. While chatting with a friend in a similar situation, who is finding it hard to leave, I had a bit of a realization. I said the following to him.

“Things would be so much easier if our abusers didn’t know what buttons to push to keep us in place, wouldn’t they? It sucks that we are so easily manipulated. What makes it worse? We castigate ourselves mercilessly when we realize that were. Now that’s the real diabolical scheme. They don’t constantly abuse us because of two things: 1) We’d find leaving a hell of a lot easier, and 2) They don’t have to. We do a much better job of it.
Abusers are masters of psychological warfare without being trained in it. They wait until we build ourselves up enough to where we are ready to leave, then they bring on the sweetness, kindness, and other things that made us fall for them in the first place. This causes us to question ourselves, to doubt reality, and make us wonder if we are even sane. When we are nearly over it, BOOM!, the abuse resumes. And then the castigation begins again.
Another fucked up thing about it? We question if we don’t deserve it. Surely we bring it on ourselves. We push them to yell, scream, blame, hit, etc., us. If we were better, they would never treat us this way.

Now is the time to ask yourself these questions:
1. Why do I deserve to be treated this way?
2. What makes me a terrible person?
3. Why do I think this is okay?
4. Why is it important that it be my fault?
5. Is it really okay for me to go through this?
6. Why?
7. Is this really who I am?
8. Do I want this for my children?
9. If it is okay for me to be treated this way, why don’t I want my kids to be?

The reason the “yourself” at the beginning is stressed is because I want you to just go based on you. Don’t worry about what anyone else this. They are unimportant for this exercise. Once you have the right answers to those questions, then you will know what to do. What are the right answers, you ask? You know. Yes, you do. In your heart.”

If you, or a loved one is in a similar situation, call the National Domestic Abuse Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.

Inspiring Blogger Award

This is interesting: I was just nominated for my first blogging award. The nom came from the lovely Sooz over at her blog, dreamshadow59.wordpress.com. According to her, I have to name 7 interesting things about myself. I have a small problem with that: I don’t think I’m that interesting. Others do. So, I’m gonna cheat a bit (probably won’t win, but eh). I’m gonna tell some things about me that aren’t general knowledge.

1) I’m an atheist. I really can’t stand religion, nor do I understand the need people have to hope that there is something out there.

2) I’m a giver. If I like you, I’m going to give you all that I can, be it time, caring, a shoulder to cry on, ect.

3) I’m a pimp. No, not the illegal kind. I mean, if I like someone’s stuff, I will talk it up everywhere. Twitter, Facebook, Linkdin, WordPress, ect. I want everyone to see this epic stuff.

4) I’m a midget. Seriously. To leave my third floor apartment, I base jump down each stair. It’s exhausting I tell you. What? You know I’m bullshitten? Oh, alright. I’m 6′. (shrugs) I thought it was funny.

5) I’m a word thief. I kid you not. There is a fellow blogger (I’ll mention her later) who doesn’t like to use the F-bomb on her blog. She came up with “Feck” to take its fecken place. I liked it. Boom Mine. One of my friend’s doesn’t like to have “-ing” at the end of her words. Instead, the end with “-en”. I’m sure you’ve seen that I swiped that fecken thing too. 😀

6) I like fecken with people. Are you a homophobe? Come, gimme them sweet cheeks, boyo. Are you deeply religious? Luke, I am your god. Are you strongly atheistic? You will be much happier when you accept Jesus in your heart. But, I only do that if I like you in general.

7) I seek to help others, but I don’t know how to accept it for myself.

And now for the part where I’m supposed to nominate 7 other bloggers that I think deserve it.

Sweet Mother She’s a blast, and is willing to share some of her inner struggles. Also, the originator of the almighty “Feck.”

Sooz She’s epic. I love reading her blog. Some of her stories are pretty hot. 😉

R.S.Guthrie A friend of mine with several published books. He’s a good man who is willing to give me a hand with my novel. His books are really good. Go check them out on his blog.

Kevin Rau is another friend of mine who has published several books. He, too is willing to help me out with my novel. I really like Kevin’s H.E.R.O novels. Go get them on his blog. The first in his series is free.

Vy is as big a fan of Sweet Mother’s “Feck” as I am. She has a great blog, too.

Fab is one of my best friends. She is going through a lot, and is pretty tough. She’s new to the blogosphere, so, why not go check her out?

Miss Snarky Pants. She is funny as feck. She’s fond of snark, so she’s a woman after my own heart.

There. All done. Good luck to all I have nominated.

Into The Realm (raw post)

I’m not sure if this is going to be in The Chronicles of Carter Blake, Book I, or in The Chronicles of Sera Blake, Book I, but regardless, it will be in one of them. Unless it’s not. (shrug) It’s told from Carter’s perspective.
Hope you like it.

We entered a serene glade deep within the forest. Our entry was completely unexpected as there had been no indication from the trees or underbrush that an opening was forthcoming. I looked around, and was captivated by the sight of a young woman swimming nude in a small lake in the center of the glade. She turned towards us when we entered the glade. Her beauty was captivating. She had long, copper colored hair, large black eyes, perfect skin and long, swept back ears. The young woman rose out of the water and fearlessly approached our band, most of who remained in the wood. Water dripped and flowed down her exquisite body. My breath caught in my throat when she locked her entrancing gaze on my own.
“Be careful, Carter,” Lady Orwen whispered. “She is a nymph.”
Her words barely registered. My gaze happened to follow a bead of water as it ran from the hollow of the nymph’s neck, between her full, up thrust breasts, down her abdomen to where it was caught in her navel. I swallowed hard, feeling as if I had been punched in the chest by Angriz. The nymph continued forward until she stood inches from me.
“Who are you, and why are you in my glade?” she asked in a soft, haunting voice.
“I-I,” I stammered.
Her perfectly formed eyebrows rose. “Yes?”
I felt as if my tongue was stuck to the roof of my mouth. I tried swallowing a few times, but couldn’t get any saliva flowing. Lady Orwen came to my rescue.
“We were traveling through the forest and accidently came upon your glade.”
The nymph’s beautiful features warped instantly into a look of pure rage. She whipped her head around to glare fiercely at Lady Orwen.
“Silence, Warpriest!” she growled. Just as swiftly, she turned back to me, still pissed off. “Answer my question, now, Mortal!”
I felt Dearbhaile slip up and grasp my hand, reassuring me.
“My name is Carter Blake, nymph,” I said coldly. “We travel through your glade on our way to battle Drago the Clanless.”
In a flash, the rage was gone from her face, leaving serenity. “Thank you. Now, tell me, why should I allow you passage?”
I bared my teeth at her as I’d seen Angriz do with others. She gazed back at me blandly. I guess with normal teeth like mine, it didn’t have the same effect as Angriz’ fang filled maw would have. I rapidly ran through all that I had ever read about nymphs in my head.
“By all the hells,” I said. “We go to battle a warlord who has orcs and undead in his thrall!”
For an instant, I saw the rage flash across her face before it went calm again.
“Very good, Carter Blake. You have at least heard of nymphs and our enmity for despoilers of nature and unnatural things. I seek more than words.”
Dearbhaile spoke up, “What aboot th’ word o’ Renline? Would that suffice?”
“I’m sorry, Rishka,” the nymph said. “It would not. I need proof from the human.”
“Human?!” Lady Orwen exclaimed. “Do you not know who this is?”

An Interview With R.S.Guthrie

I was supposed to post this yesterday, but all sorts of hell got in the way. I’m deeply sorry for this.

Okay, for those of you who might not know him, R.S.Guthrie is an indy author with some talent in his pe- wait, he uses computer, not a pen. He an excellent author is what I’m meaning to say. His novels (a couple I’ve reviewed), are epic page turners. I’m doing this interview to get a bit more info about his forth-coming book called, Honor Land. It’s the latest in his James Pruett saga. Let’s get it, eh?

R.w.F: Would you tell us a little about your upcoming release, the third in the James Pruett Mystery/Thriller series, “Honor Land”? honorland-finalx1000

R.S.Guthrie: I can tell you that I am looking forward to it more than any book I have written so far. I am a “write by the seat of your pants” author (a pantser), which means I usually have a broad-strokes idea of where the story ends up, but I let the writing take me where it will. This particular book has come to my head in much greater detail and I believe it is going to be the best in the series.

It is centered around a war hero who has been sentenced to die in Wyoming’s lethal injection chamber—I mean this guy’s a legend; a foster of the state standing at the Army recruitment office at the minute they opened the door at 8 AM on his 18th birthday. A real hero that did some bad things when he came back from the war.

My recurring protagonist, Sheriff James Pruett has followed the story of this man since he was a child legend growing up in the state. There is a jail break and let’s just say Pruett’s not convinced the dishonored war hero is as guilty people, including the U.S. Marshal Service who are tracking him down.

R.w.F: Where did you get the idea for James Pruett and his legacy?

The man himself! Click to learn more.
The man himself! Click to learn more.

R.G: I believe more than anything, as a writer or a reader, in the characters. If you’ve not created characters with depth and flaws and honest traits, they don’t ring true, and a read cannot connect with them. The people I grew up with and around in Wyoming are some of the finest people I know to this day, and they are wonderful characters (in every sense of the word).

I always knew I wanted to write a recurring hero with whom the everyday man or woman could relate. Each of us has problems, defects, weaknesses, and hardships, but characters like Pruett let us believe that we can still be the heroes we dream of being, flaws and all.

R.w.F: Who’s your favorite character in this series?

R.G: Easily Ty McIntyre, the anti-hero of the first book, Blood Land. Like I said, I’m a pantser and I had originally had Ty planned for one book. He’s such a great character that I brought him back briefly in book two, “Money Land. Don’t be surprised if I do a lot more with him in the future; he’s just one of those characters who refuses to allow you to shelve him.

R.w.F: What was the hardest part of writing it?

R.G.: Being true to the locals. Of course as fiction writers we have to be magnificent exaggerators, but I believe we still need to respect the truth. The hardest part about writing characters from the area in which you lived is that every book needs some evil antagonists to create the conflict, the story. You don’t want anyone thinking you “picked them” as the foundation for your coal-hearted villain.

R.w.F: If Blood Land were optioned for a movie deal, who would you like to play Pruett?

Click to buy
Click to buy

R.G: For anyone who has not read “Blood Land” the answer to this is actually a huge SPOILER, so skip it. Unless that kind of thing doesn’t bother you.

Answer: Danny Glover. It’s who I have always seen whenever I think of Pruett. There’s no one else for the part. Have you seen “Silverado”? My book’s not a Western but it occurs in the West, where even in the twenty-first century there are still cowboys and cowgirls, Stetson hats, and a landscape that would make you believe in the glory of a time machine. Glover would pull all that together. And then some.

R.w.F: What made you chose indy publishing?

R.G.: Unknown authors can’t afford one book coming out every year or two (or three). They’ll be forgotten. Stephen King can take as much time as he needs, but I need to keep my audience both fulfilled and, more importantly, GROWING. Plus the royalties are much higher when you don’t have to share.

R.w.F: What’s the hardest part of independent publishing?

R.G: The marketing. Finding readers, or rather, reaching them. It’s not just a self-publishing issue, it’s an issue for the unknown author who signs a deal with, say, Penguin or Simon & Schuster. Sure, their moniker ads a little clout to the book, but beyond that, no one knows you from Adam, and the publisher knows that. They aren’t going to sink any money into your marketing until they have some pretty risk-free assurances you’re going to sell and make them money. So guess who still gets to do a lion’s share of the marketing and readership ferreting? Yep. Not them — you.

R.w.F: Did you hire an editor, or do you have a friend who is one?

Click to buy.
Click to buy.

R.G.: I have a traditionally published author, Russell Rowland, who edits my James Pruett series. He has been on board “Blood Land” since the first word; he was the teacher of the class where I began that book (and from the start he told me it was publish-worthy and we’ve maintained a friendship and professional working relationship ever since. He really gets me — my voice. His advice is irreplaceable.

R.w.F: How do you promote your novels?

R.G.: There’s not enough time to list all the ways. A very good (and highly successful) writer friend told me this: “I look at every book and ask myself ‘what am I doing to promote this?’ and he tries to always have something going on, coming up, etc. I’m a bit behind him to say the least, but I am learning. It’s not easy. I will be taking some big marketing risks in 2013. But to get big, you have to walk the walk and think big.

R.w.F: What’s the best thing about being independent?

You control your own destiny. It makes for a lot of work—you are like nine professionals rolled into one. But when you work hard and succeed, or you affect someone’s life—man, you know you did that, not some gargantuan corporation. I received this quote just today:

“My husband stopped drinking alcohol 10yrs ago and now he is addicted to this character, Sheriff Pruett,, Thank you RS Guthrie for having a real character with the real time flaws of man, it helps keep him,Ted, focused..please keep them coming..”

Can there be any better feeling to know that was something you wrote that touched and helped another living, breathing human being? Then you get to throw on there that you didn’t have to worry about some third party changing your theme or your storyline (where then you might never have reached that person). Your destiny is in your hands. I like that, as much work as it may be.

Look for Honor Land to hit Amazon in April.

Jenifer Steel, Agent of the F.S.I.A (raw update)

Rob strode through the darkness, cussing under his breath. The battle with the Soul Eater had distracted him from watching over Jennifer. A man had left with her from the café, but he also seemed to have disappeared.
He heard moans coming from an alley near the Super House fire station on Eutaw Street. Walking rapidly, he saw a couple leaning against a wall. The man had his back facing the alley. Shadows cast by the building prevented him from seeing more. As he approached, the sounds the woman was making seemed to be of pleasure. He sighed. Of course it wouldn’t be that easy to find her again. Rob turned to continue, when something about the woman’s moans caught his attention. He moved closer. Both were too into what was occurring between them to notice his approach.
The noise the woman was making signaled an undercurrent of pain to it. Soon, Rob heard sucking sounds and could see the man had his face buried in her neck. He punched other man in the base of the skull and gripped the guy by his forehead. Rob pulled his head back. The moon came out from behind a cloud. Blood coated fangs gleamed in the white light. ‘Vampire. Fucking thing.’ Rob’s fingers sank into the parasite’s skull as he slammed its face into the brick wall beside the woman. As she slumped from the vampire’s grip, the moonlight fell on her face. ‘Jennifer.’
The vampire twisted in Rob’s hands, trying to fight back. The chronomancer spotted writing on the back of its neck. It appeared to be a serial number like the Nazi’s had branded their victims with. This one was identified as a Gypsy.
“Salutari, vampir. Hrănire pe oameni? Timp sa moara,” Rob said in Romanian, before slamming the monster against the wall again. There was a wet crunch and the vampire howled. He hurled the vampire across the wide alley. It struck the wall of a parking garage and slid, senseless, to the ground. Turning back to Jennifer, Rob reached within himself and summoned the energies to manipulate the time stream. He wove a temporal bubble around her unconscious form and turned back to deal with the undead.
The vampire shook its head and snarled at Rob, seeking to intimidate. The chronomancer merely laughed. “I wish I had time to play with you, but I don’t.”
The undead creature leaped at Rob who sidestepped. There was a flash of blue and the vampire hit the ground, decapitated. Rob sheathed his crystal sword and headed to Jennifer. Lifting her in his arms, he concentrated on his home and the two vanished. The air rushing to fill the void left by them scattered the ashes of the destroyed vampire.