On OCTOBER 1st, you will be able to read the words I read to you in various bad accents and with mumbly pronunciation these past months yourself!
Yes! You are correct, you didn’t see an episode of Escape Into Storytelling yesterday. That’s because:
It was a holiday weekend in the USA.
I was tired and needed a break.
But! I have big news!
Virago will be available in print and e-book format OCTOBER 1st.
That’s right! On OCTOBER 1st, you will be able to read the words I read to you in various bad accents and with mumbly pronunciation these past months yourself! YES! You will be able to hold the book in your hands, either in print or downloaded to your tablet or Kindle. I already have a working relationship with Amazon, and am going to be looking into other opportunities for self-publishing.
To be clear – Virago was originally published in 2015. This version has been workshopped and revised, and anyone who owns an old copy can trade it to me for a new one, free of charge. Or if you want both, I will give you a copy of the new one, free of charge.
The 2021 revision will contain:
A character index
A map of the city
The other news is I will be GOING BIG with the podcast on Spotify. THAT’S RIGHT! You will be able to stream the episodes from a REAL PODCAST SOURCE that is not just my dinky blog. BIG TIMES.
So! Mark your calendar! OCTOBER 1st.
It’s a Friday, it’s the first day of the best month of the year, which contains not only Halloween but also my birthday AND when temperatures in Orlando start to creep down into those autumnal 70s and 80s.
My price range was low – 150-200k. Nothing that Architectural Digest would deign acknowledge, but maybe I could make the cover of Working Peasant Monthly.
Last year I wrote an entry about looking for a house. It was optimistic and spunky and full of hope about the future. It is also hilarious to read now, over a year later, during the worst buyer’s market since the evil shop in Stephen King’s Needful Things opened.
This is the story of how I gave up on trying to buy a house.
The Night Watch, which contains the Glorious May 25th reference, is the 6th in the Watch books, but believe me, you’ll get there fast. The comedy is that gentle, observational humor that doesn’t leave anyone bruised (except bullies), and leaves you feeling a bit wiser to the human condition.
Today is a very special day – it’s the Glorious 25th of May!
Back before May the 4th became A Thing, May 25th was Geek Pride Day, where everyone knew where their towel was (Douglas Adams) and were proud of a little thing you got punched for loving – Star Wars. Most importantly, it is a reference to Terry Pratchett’s phenomenal Discworld books.
Did you enjoy Good Omens? Well I have WONDERFUL NEWS!
The date comes from The Night Watch, lauded as one of the best in a series with many bests.
Disclaimer – I do know Grant Piercy as a friend. He did not request I write this review, nor am I being paid for it.
Agent of Truth is a high-concept sci-fi thriller, and is book 2 of The Erased series. While it explores familiar cyberpunk concepts like AI, the singularity, and identity transfer, it also includes fresh, inspired twists like transgender representation and mature approach to the material; themes like Dante’s Inferno and references to Gonzo journalism shouldn’t work in the same book, but do because they are both interrogations of the human condition. Antagonists make seductive points, and protagonists sometimes do the right thing for the wrong reason. Various characters have complex family dynamics with relationships that feel real and have depth. Character motivations are mostly clear and understandable. The plot takes a nuanced view of different characters’ desires to transition or change, or who resent the various gynoids and androids present in the world. All of this is presented with bold prose and vivid description.
I gave the book 4 out of 5 stars because the characters’ voices sometimes blended together and I had to check the chapter titles to clarify who was who, especially in the Architect segments. Sometimes the short chapters were jarring, but other times they were effective as the reader internalized the character’s disorientation or frantic headspace, as with Regina or Cassia (some of the more clearly recognizable POV voices). The ‘Chorus of the Overmind’ segment felt misplaced – it was too long for an epilogue and introduced new characters at the book’s end. I assume it is meant to open doors the next book will close, but it seems more fitting for an anthology taking place in the same universe, or in a sequel.
Those very minor observations aside, the book is a gripping read and contains some brilliant observations on human relationships, the future relationship between humanity and AI, and identity. I recommend Agent of Truth to fans of cyberpunk, science fiction, and cerebral romance. It’s an excellent read and a superb entry to the genre. I look forward to reading more of his work.