Friday, June 30, 2017

Tears of Heaven - First Chapter

What’s this?  You haven’t read Tears of Heaven yet, and don’t know if it really interests you?  Well, my friend, you’ve come to the right place.  For absolutely, positively, no commitment is required to find out if Tears of Heaven is right for you.  For the low, low, incredibly no-cost price of zero dollars, and zero cents, you can read the first chapter ABSOLUTELY FREE!

That’s right, ABSOLUTELY FREE!

No sign-up fees.  No credit card numbers.  No email addresses.  Nothing.


Here’s a sample now, and at the bottom you’ll have a link where you can read the first chapter of Tears of Heaven today!

June 14, 223 BCE

She stood tall, proud, strong, beautiful, wearing only heavy shackles, in the warm sun.  A bright sheen of sweat made her olive skin glisten and sparkle.  She was almost completely devoid of hair, a point that Aeschylus, the slave-master and auctioneer, was demonstrating even now.  He ordered her to lift her arms and open her legs so that all could inspect this fine specimen of femininity.
Damascus, Dami to his friends, didn’t know all the tricks of the slave trade, but hair could be removed, paints and tinctures could be used to hide scars and wash over the average.  So the features of the slave girl didn’t particularly strike him.
Still, there was something about her, something that reminded him of . . .
Carefully and casually, so as to not draw attention, he hefted his money pouch tied to his broad leather belt, opposite his short sword.  He weighed its likely worth against the likely worth of the girl, and knew he was already outbid.
“Aeolus,” he whispered to the man next to him.  The short, stocky man didn’t turn away from the bidding, but he did cock his curly head to one side to let Dami know he listened.  “How much have you?”
“For her?” Aeolus shrugged. “You’d have to pay me.”
Aeolus laughed at his own joke, which to Dami always sounded like a cross between a cough and a bark.
“Come now, how much?”
“Look at her,” Aeolus said, as he unfolded one arm from across his broad chest and gestured with his thick-fingered hand. “She has no hips, at least not enough for one or two babes, and her breasts are not even a half handful.  A child will starve trying to suckle.  There’s no meat on her, and what there is looks to be field muscle.  She has nothing to give a growing child warmth.  She’s not worth a shekel for birthing.”
“I don’t want her to give children,” Dami replied.
“What good is a slave girl except for children?  Oh sure, you love them at your whim, but when they grow older, what’s the point?  If they haven’t given you daughters to marry or sell, and sons to make you immortal, you’re just wasting your seed.”
“Pah,” Dami replied, now slightly annoyed.  “You have no soul, man.”
“Sold it,” Aeolus replied, with another barking laugh.  “Kept getting in the way.  Got a good price for it, too.”
“And drank it on a single cup of vinegar-wine,” Dami retorted.  “Come now, Aeolus, I know you won well on the horses last night, and you’ve been lucky at the dice cups all week.  You’re carrying half my profits.”
“I’d have all your profits, if you could hold your drink,” Aeolus replied.  “But I don’t mean to part with any of them until that plump little thing comes up; she’ll bear five or ten babes with ease, and not a one will ever starve.  And I mean to have me a horse as well, so stop asking.”
“Fifteen shekels?” Aeschylus cried in mock exasperation.  “Is that all I’m bid on the fine, the fair Water Lily?  Come now, she will keep your bed warm at night, and during the day too.”  He turned her around and slapped her rump. “See, firm and ready for the right man to set his plow.  Now what am I bid?  Give me good bids for Water Lily!”
“Seventeen,” a voice cried out.
“Nineteen,” another replied.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

New Cover Reveal - Tears of Heaven

We saw the Nephilim there. We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.
Numbers 13:33

“Leave now, little half-breed,” the rogue said. His voice had a sibilance that surrounded her, whispering in both of her ears intimately. “Leave, and I will not kill you.  Stay, and I will make your pain a torture.  I will see you last for days upon days, and I promise you abuses you could not dream.”

Del said nothing.

People think they want to meet an angel, but they really don’t.  The awful truth is that meeting an angel is the scariest, most life-altering moment of any mortal’s short existence.  Angels have always had their voices raised in songs of praise and their wings dipped in rivers of blood.  When the Throne needs a mortal slain, or an army felled, an angel is sent.  When a city or nation needs to be leveled, and the ground sown with salt for a thousand years, an angel is the destroyer.

Flood, fire, famine, disease, pestilence and death are conjured through an angel.

Angels should be a human’s worst nightmare embodied.

Rogues were an order of magnitude worse.  An angel was a messenger of destruction, operating under orders from the Throne.  Rogues had no direction, no channel for their power.  They sought only dominion through the most direct means possible.

“Go, little girl.” The rogue gestured with his right arm, the one where she’d managed to drive a spike through his wrist.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Count Down - One Day

We’re down to our last day before the Tears of Heaven cover reveal.  Lining up the marketing and the reviewers and the everything that goes with a book release has been a lot of work, but it’s been easier this time.  The book blurb, for instance, is a lot stronger:

People think they want to meet an angel, but they really don’t.  The awful truth is that meeting an angel is the scariest, most life-altering moment of any mortal’s short existence.  Del, hated angels.  It didn’t matter that she was half-angel herself.  She was forced to obey an angel’s commands or be destroyed.  The only thing worse than angels were the demons that Del and her partner, Marrin, had to hunt down and send back to Hell.  When she's ordered to banish three demons, too much of a bad thing may be more than Del and Marrin can handle.

One day for the cover reveal.

Four weeks until the book re-release.

Get ready.  Del is about to gear up and get back to work!

Tomorrow . . . 

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Count Down - Two Days

It looks like Company of the Damned will be the longest book in the Flames of Perdition series.  That’s probably as it should be.  Company of the Damned is currently 67,670, with at least three more chapters to round out the story (before editing).  Here’s how things look to break down:

Tears of Heaven—79,007
Hell Becomes Her—82,263
Company of the Damned—85,000+

In other news, we only have to wait two more days for the cover reveal of Tears of Heaven.

Less waiting than yesterday . . . 

Monday, June 26, 2017

Count Down — 7,6, 5, 4, and 3 Days

Knee-deep in Company of the Damned.  We’re up to chapter 12 (about 2300 words) and I forgot to set up the countdown for the cover reveal this week.  So, Thursday, June 29th is the day, and here is your seven, six, five and four countdown days.

And now, just THREE DAYS until the cover reveal!

That means less than four weeks until the re-release of Tears of Heaven!

Tell your friends!

Sooner than I thought . . . 

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Count Down — One Week

It’s safe to say the real countdown begins today.

One week until the Cover Reveal on Thursday, June 29th.

Five weeks until the re-release of Tears of Heaven!

We’ve selected a cover artist for Hell Becomes Her, and I’m very excited to work with her.  After reviewing all kinds of excellent portfolios, I felt she was the closest to the look and feel that is Del’s urban fantasy / angelpunk world.

Company of the Damned has really picked up pace.  Chapter 10 is complete.  Chapter 11 is nearly done (haha, you smart-asses!).  Word count stands just over 68,000!

Grab your SIG .45s, some cold-forged iron spikes, and get ready for some divine wrath from your favorite sarcastic half-angel!

Sooner than last week . . . 

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Trials of the Temple

That my 9yo, going on 34, with the curly hair in the middle of all these Jedi Padawan.  Before Disney bought out the Star Wars franchise, before Episode VII: The Force Awakens and Rogue One, this was a really cute, simple activity.  Parents showed up, urged their somewhat reluctant children to become “Jedi” trainees, and they were randomly selected.

Boy STILL has bedhead!

We tried two or three times to get just one of the boys into the robes and lightsabers.  Alas, the Force was not strong enough.

Now, the process is a great deal more involved.  You have to go to the sign up kiosk, and if you don’t get in on an early bird special, you can forget it.  “Trials of the Temple” fills up within the first 30 minutes or so of the park opening.  Of the five or six offered times, only the last two were still available . . . fine by us.  Other parents were not so amused.

It's still a lot of fun, and there’s a special section down front where family members—aka Nerd Dads—can sit and watch the kids learn the ways of the Force and face off against some of the Dark Side big bads.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Countdown - Two Weeks

The countdown continues!

Two weeks until the Cover Reveal on Thursday, June 29th.

Six weeks until the re-release of Tears of Heaven!

We are now looking at cover artists for Hell Becomes Her.

Finally, Company of the Damned continues apace, which means I’m deep into chapter 10.  For those of you keeping track, my chapters tend to run around 6,000 words, and an urban fantasy novel tends to be between 80,000 and 100,000.  This means Company of the Damned, is well over the 3/4 mark!

Very soon . . . 

Monday, June 12, 2017

The Loss of a Name

We hates it forever! (not really)

Absolutely, utterly crushed.

Last week, a friend of mine posted up about an author he was reading, and posted the title: Blood of Heroes (The Ember War Saga Book 3).  To be fair, Richard Fox, probably had that name kicking around in his cranium for years and years.

I still have to hate him.

The Blood of Heroes was going to be the name of the first book in MY fantasy series.  Gritty, realistic, with some moderate magic, and more brains than brawn—though, no end of brawn, blades, babes, and of course blood.  The first in a series that, by my calculations, would make ba-jillions of dollars and be revered as one of the great fantasy stories of our times.

Alas, I’ve held onto that book—and the title—so long now, that I thought it was my property alone.  Oh, sure, there was the Rutger Hauer movie of the same name—a post-apocalyptic "sports" movie.  The only reason I was aware of that movie, and have watched it, is because I took my own advice when it came to securing the title of my book.  It was the only thing that came up, and the movie had, at that time, only a very small cult following (of which I gladly joined).

Juggers, GEAR UP!
Alas, a quick search now—something I haven’t done in quite some time—reveals that it’s far from the original title that I once thought it was.  A dozen folk have since released titles with similar names.  

The noise and confusion around this title is now complete.

*sniff, sniff*

Goodbye dear friend.  Goodbye, dear title.  Goodbye, perfect summary of my story.  You brought me great joy every time I thought of how perfectly you mirrored the concept of the tale, and how well you would lead the series with similar titles to follow.

I shall miss you.

And to you, Richard Fox, for bringing this to my attention, I shall forever hate and revile your name (but in a good way).  I wish you nothing but success for this unknown impunity.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Hunting Monsters: Book One by Allen Currier

In a sleepy little town, a seasoned detective and a killer the likes of which no one has ever seen. Detective Steve Belcher has his work cut out for him. But how do you find a killer who leaves no clues. A killer who has the police lost at every turn. How many bodies will stack up until Detective Belcher can find the monster committing these unspeakable crimes? How many monsters will he have to chase down to find the one behind the murders? Where are the monsters and who are the hunters? In whose mind do they live?


Their heads had been severed. The wife's terrified features, pale and ghoulish, taunted him from the body of her husband. The son-of-a-bitch had switched their heads. Detective Steve Belcher leaned in and examined the crude stitching on the couple’s necks. He rubbed his finger across the stitches, and it slid between the dried scabbed skin and tissue. He jerked back in disgust, and the head fell over, restrained only by the stitching stretched over the loose skin. He reached over and pushed the head back in place. Fear ran through him, and a cold sweat covered his forehead as he imagined the horror they’d faced.
Their dried out eyes had already begun to shrivel in their sockets. A pale white glaze was forming over the pupils, nearly obscuring the blue color. The built up gasses in the bloated bodies’ decaying organs permeated the air so thickly the stench filled his nostrils and mouth.
He gagged and almost vomited. He swallowed hard. The skin on the bodies had dried and shriveled to the point of cracking and revealed the tissue underneath.
In his twenty-five years on the force, he hadn’t felt this level of fear mixed with hatred erupting in him. He didn't know what kind of sick bastard had done this, but he would find out.
He left the bodies and continued around the rest of the house. No matter where he looked, no clues seemed to be left behind. Everything was too clean. The pictures on the walls of family, the decorated place mats on the dining room table, showed how the couple cared for the house. The numerous windows wore only top valences, exposing the crime scene to the many on-lookers in the neighborhood.
To have two bodies desexualized in such a manner and have no mess told him it hadn’t happened here. He needed to look elsewhere, but where, he didn't know.
The coroner reached up and closed the eyes of the victims, completing her work. Doctor Fisher, dressed in her blue pants suit and white coat, stood up and removed her gloves. She turned to the detective. “This is a new one for the books,” she said. She had been with the Sheriff’s Department for as long as Steve. Her short brown hair covered by the hairnet she wore, just covered her ears.
“Yeah, just what I needed this morning,” Detective Belcher said. “Do you have any ideas?”
“None at all, and I'm not sure where to start, either,” she said. “Let’s get them back to the lab so I can find some answers,” she told the men waiting to bag the bodies for transport. She picked up her bag, ready to leave the scene.

 * * * *

Steve watched the local news reporter, Lacy James. She stood on the street in front of the crime scene, fingers pressed to her ear. Her long blonde hair moved with the breeze. Only five feet tall, she was petite and fit. She got the lead on the best stories to report.
“The police have told us two people were found murdered in the house behind me, a husband and wife of thirty years. At this time, the police will not speculate on any motive or suspects. We will keep you up to date as soon as we know more. This is Lacy James reporting live, back to you in the studio.”
She ended the cutaway. “Load up the van,” she said to the cameraman. “Let’s go.”
The gurneys, with the two body bags to be loaded in the awaiting van, where wheeled out. Lacy stared into the forming crowd and met Steve’s gaze as the detective left the house. Dressed in his oldest suit and nineteen eighties wingtip shoes, he probably looked like something out of an old movie to her. Every day the mirror told him his silver-streaked hair and exhausted face revealed the stress of too many years working long hours. His dark blue piercing eyes looked right through suspects, but they didn’t faze Lacy, and she ran to catch him.
“Detective, is there anything you can tell us? What happened in the house?”
“Not now, Lacy, you’ll have to wait for the press conference like everyone else.”
“Can you at least tell us their names?” she said with contempt in her voice.
He got in his car and drove away.

About the Author

Born and raised in a military family, Allen spent most of his youth traveling from one Air Force Base to another. That allowed a wide-eyed boy to open his imagination to all of the different worlds around him. Having learned from life's experiences showed him how much adventure there is in the world, that along with the old westerns he watched as a child to the science fiction he still enjoys today, his mind was opened up to a wonderful world of endless possibilities. Starting out early writing songs played a big role in creating and singing a song for his daughter's wedding for the father daughter dance. Allen has been married for thirty-seven years to his beautiful wife and has been blessed with three daughters and four granddaughters.

He was once told that "you can't read a book, much less write one." He thought to himself "Challenge accepted." So out of spite, he sat in a dark room letting his mind wander down pathways that had been closed by time and life. This opened up a world long forgotten. Telling no one, he completed his first manuscript and found a publisher. Today he is a published author, a song writer and if flying a model toy helicopter counts, he'd tell you he's a pilot. His only dream is to see his family happy, healthy, loved, and laughing through life. He works very hard at the last one.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Countdown - Three Weeks

The countdown continues:

Only three more weeks until the Cover Reveal on Thursday, June 29th!

Only seven more weeks until the re-release of Tears of Heaven!

Soon . . . 

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Covers and Books and Dates—Tears of Heaven Re-Release

Attention, all personnel—As the great wisdom and prophet of our age often says, “Alright. Alright.  Alright.”

The long anticipated, much promised, often stressed about (by me) dates are finally here.

New cover art for Tears of Heaven will release Thursday, June 20th.

The re-release of Tears of Heaven will happen by Monday, July 31st.