Bows Grow Taut, Battle Approaches . . . .

(Read in the voice of a stereotypical New York Jewish grandmother) “Oi, Morty!  Whateva happened to that nice Tommy Mays boy?  Ya know, the writer fella, with all o’ dem science fictional stories and books and what not?  Ya neva heah from him no more.”

“Who?” (Hard of hearing stereotypical New York Jewish granddad)

“Tommy Mays, autha of A Sword Inta Dahkness, RAYMO, Da Rememberists, Strategic Deploymen, Dreams f’Sale (Oh my, a sale!), an’ otha fine works of science fiction and wonda!”


“He was woikin’ on a sequel, and a new book o’ Christian science fiction (oh, dem gentiles, gettin’ to their shenanigans), and a couple o’ short stories?  Tommy Mays!?”

“Who!?  Where’s my sandwich?”

Aaaaaaand, SCENE!  Hi, y’all.  Just wanted to drop a line before making a pre-emptive donation to the Anti-Defamation League.  I’ve been off the blog for a while, but wanted to let you know of some things going on.

First, I AM WRITING, but I’m probably not writing on the things you want me to write on.  No progress on the sequel to ASID and only marginal growth on either Echomancer, or Demigod, my two young-adult urban fantasy projects.  I’ve had a lot of short story stuff (as well as a lot of life) interfere.

First, of course, I didn’t make it with the Baen Fantasy Award and my story “The Commuter”, but it is working its way through the magazine rejection files now, as is “Bumped”.  Should they not make it, I might do a final polish and offer them through Amazon Singles (which is not a dating site.  I stand corrected).

My first new short story product is a definite WIN and I’m VERY excited about it.  This is a quasi-sequel to an anthology of science fact and fiction regarding future warfare produced back in the 70’s and 80’s.  I forget the title of that one, but Castalia House is publishing an unofficial follow-up called Riding the Red Horse, an obvious allusion to the Red Horse of War.  Headed by Tom Kratman and edited by Vox Day, the new anthology will include essays on the future of warfare, science articles, and a BUNCH of great new short stories by some of my favorite authors, including Tom Kratman and Vox Day, Chris Kennedy, Christopher Nuttall, and little old me.  My story, “Within This Horizon” is under editing now, but I can’t wait for the book to launch and for you all to see it.

The second bit of news requires YOUR PARTICIPATION!  I have just submitted a story for The Writer’s Arena, sort of a short story Thunderdome (Two Stories Enter!  Only ONE STORY LEAVES!!).  They hold weekly fiction contests where each writer has a week to submit a story about the same particular topic.  That topic may be AI gone awry, a carnival from Hell, or ghosts – madness or reality?  Once both writers have submitted their tales, both stories get posted on the website and readers vote on the winner.  These are short tales, usually under 4000 words each, and they are a lot of fun.  This week the topic is AI gone awry, so do please go check it out and vote.  Next week is my week, which deals with “fake” hauntings:  either you have to describe someone who is a victim of a made-up haunting, or you have to describe a real haunting that won’t allow itself to be disproved.  My story, “The Gaslight Consultant” will be appearing there in mid-October.  I absolutely need your help and your judgment, with your vote going to the best of the two stories.  And if you like it, consider supporting the site with a small donation, like what you would pay for a show or an issue of a magazine.

So, that’s where I’ve been, Jewish Grandma.  Now excuse me while I go prepare for next week’s battle!


2 thoughts on “Bows Grow Taut, Battle Approaches . . . .

  1. Hi Tom,
    I really like your blog and am glad you are back at it! I was one of the earliest readers of your first book. I am looking forward to the next one. Since the initial book introduces an almost complete opening to a very well described and detailed “Paradigm” for lack of a better word, what is called in Pop Catagories
    something akin to “Military Sci-Fi, and or Military Sci Fi “Opus,” I am wondering to myself, “out loud” as it were, why not have some fun with this, as the author, and expand on your so well created original ideas and settings and characters along similar themes modeled by series such as only one other author comes to mind, Mr Christopher Nuttal in his 8 book series entitled “The Empire Corps.”
    NOT that you, in any way should “copy” him, of course, just that your first book reminds me of Chris’s Third or even Fourth book as far as the excellent visionary details and the high quality of your work goes. So I guess I am asking, is it, going forward, possible to continue your own themes, which I feel are so strongly developed in your first book??
    In my question is the implied question of whether or not the writing of more short stories as such, may possibly, though I am no real author myself, be taking up energies that could be better aimed in the direction of going forward with your second book? And the third and so on. ASID is such an excellent book, and in it so much of your “groundwork” and so many of your own ideas have been already laid down, that perhaps just playing around with developmental potentials here, which are huge and vast, would that be a possibility? ( I think I may even have reviewed your book on Amazon, though I rarely review books I read )
    I don’t know if any of this makes any sense at all. I was very impressed by your first book. I read a lot and yours certainly did not seem like a first book.
    I do a lot of my own private writing. I can never write fiction though. So, I guess, for what my 2 cents is worth, I just am curious as to how very hard it must be to write a second and a third book in a world that you, yourself have created on your own, in your own style and imagination.
    Is it an issue of picking up pen and paper, so to speak, and just writing 5-10 pages per day?? Or is there something in my own “ignorance” that I am missing completely? Remembering that you have a vast knowledge base of real world “hard science” which is a very rare and very valuable commodity in the writing field today. You do realize that this gives you a huge advantage over all other authors?
    I still remember in one of my writing classes, when I got totally stuck, my teacher who I was very fond of, coming over to me and whispering “you know the secret is that you cannot put everything you know and want to say in just one of your works… you gotta leave a lot of it out in order to write” which was a huge breakthrough for me. This is not meant as applying to anyone other then myself, of course. I add this because I wanted to emphasis that fiction writing is incredibly hard!!
    I see from what I wrote above that I am repeating themes here. My apologies.
    Warm Regards, Cary Cornell

  2. Honestly Tom you’re doing pretty well. More than well according to Doug Dandridge. Doug’s got a new book on how he went from selling only sixty or so books in his first 8 months, to 100K books in the following 14 months after.

    Considering you have a day job being one of those rough men standing ready to visit violence on those who would harm us you’re doing dam good.
    Now stop slapping yourself where ever you happen to be slapping yourself and let your fingers fly.

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