Good News!  The Josey Jackson short story, “Fire For Hire” has been sold to Tales of the Talisman magazine! Published! Yeehaw!

Meanwhile, I have been getting a little bit done on a novel or two, but seeing as how I just qualified for the US Taekwon-Do Team…again…my spare time for the next four months pretty much just disappeared.

I’m looking forward to the 2012 Jack Williamson Lectureship next week and Bubonicon 44 this fall.

Well, back to it!

 How ’bout some covers? 

 Take a gander at the covers I came up with for some of my stories. 
 It’s a very interesting exercise to try and represent a large collection of   words with a simple image.

Always, the questions I ponder are simple.  What would it look like to the reader?  Does it convey a sense of the writing?  Does it look good enough to think twice about?

I know that I like the results, but I wonder what everyone else out there thinks?

Just for the fun of it, I am diving into the month of madness known as nanowrimo or National Novel Writing Month. 

My plans are simple.  Write 50,000 words or more and don’t get worried.  No sitting and staring and pondering continuity.  Just write.  Most importantly, no editing of stuff I’ve already written.  That favored form of procrastination is to be vehemently refrained from for the duration.

The greatest question of all is “What novel to write?”  There are all too many novels clawing at my mind, begging to be written.  Which will be the lucky winner this time?  The main contenders are two urban fantasy concepts.  One is new and exciting and not so very well fleshed out (in theory) and the the other is a bit more seasoned and thought out. 

Until my mind changes, I will be working on the great adventure of Josey Jackson that goes by the title, Wanted: Undead or Alive. 

Josey Jackson is what you might call a bounty hunter, or a mercenary, or some worse things if you’re feeling lucky. There is a limitless supply of punks, creeps, bozos, freaks, etc…, who need to be put out of their misery or otherwise stopped. The best part is, people will pay for it.
Specializing in Target Retrieval and Removal, demolitions, and supernatural situations, Josey is not  subtle, but very effective. She also happens to be a highly unstable magus.
When she takes a seemingly easy contract to transport a captured member of the elusive magical mafia known as the Crimson Phoenix—better known as the Red Birds—across three states, things don’t stay simple for long.  The red bird mafia  will do everything they can to stop her from completing her mission.  What she doesn’t know is that there is a far more elaborate plot in effect and the mafia wants more than her prisoner.  She’ll have to survive undead bikers, gunslinging vamps, and other monsters, human and otherwise as she crosses the no-man’s-land of the Texas-Arizona border.
The novella that reveals a little of Josey’s history is now available for free download from many fine eBook retailers including iBooks, nook, sony, and more.  Or get it here: Fiery Red Mage: A Josey Jackson Story .

Wheat harvest is finally over and I’m geting some writing done!  In celebration of that fact, here is an excerpt from “Wanted: Undead or Alive,” the urban fantasy project starring Josey Jackson.  Enjoy!
The narrow state highway stretched across the flat plains in either direction, cutting through the countryside in odd angles and pointless tangents as only a true New Mexican piece of pavement does.  I waited for maybe an hour before I saw the dust on the horizon.  It took a delightfully short time after that before Tommy slid the car to a stop in front of me.  And what a car it was. Orange with a blacked out hood and two matching stripes that ran down and along the sides in a line that was broken only by the words Boss 429. It looked mean and fast, but as good as it was on the eyes, the sound was heaven.  It growled low and deep, 429 cubic inches of big block muscle that shook the body as if it could hardly be contained by the car; like a wild animal trying to escape from under the hood. 
I felt a surge of emotion break out of my heart as it hit home that I had finally got it.  The legendary 1969 Boss 429 Mustang, built not for practicality, but because Ford wanted to run the 429 in stock car racing.  They needed to sell at least 500 of them to the public for the engine to qualify as stock.  Extremely rare and expensive, I had been trying to lay my hands on an original for a long time.  Just my luck that poor Freddy’s papa had one and was willing—if reluctant—to pay his debts to me in the form of classic muscle.
“Hope you enjoyed that, Tommy.  Cause you know I won’t let anyone else touch it again.”
He leaned against the hood and smiled, his clear blues eyes twinkling. “My dear, Josey, I do believe that you mean that truly.  I can’t say that I blame you. This is a monstrous work of machinery.  I must inform you that I was unaware that we were working for such a nondivisable payment.”
“Pop the trunk, fangs, and I’ll see what I can do.”  He did.  The small trunk contained a duffel with $100,000 in nonsequential bills.  Twenty percent of the fee, Tommy’s standard cut for backup duty. 
“Where’s yours, Josey?  I don’t see any more,” he drawled in mild puzzlement.
I grinned and flipped the keys around my finger.  “You’re lookin’ at it.  This car’s worth about 400 grand easy.  Much more fun than cash.”  I started the engine and the torque shook the car.  “You want a ride home? It’s on my way.”
Tommy climbed in and we sped away.  I just leaned back and let the magnificent sound roll over me.