Aug
31

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The Battle of Castle Itter

itterHey, remember that time when a bunch of high ranking French prisoners of war allied with their friend, the SS officer, and asked for help from a Wehrmacht officer in command of a handful of men and the local Austrian Resistance? They knew THEY didn’t have enough manpower to hold off a couple hundred Waffen-SS troops, so they joined forces with 14 American GIs, and holed up in an old castle to keep the prisoners safe.

It’s the damnedest thing. And it actually happened. I can’t believe no one’s turned it into a film. Even the little details make for great reading, like the French tennis star who sneaked through enemy lines to get word to the Americans.

If you’ve never heard of it, you should check it out. And even if you HAVE heard of it, short of a book on the battle, this is the most in-depth account of it I’ve seen. You should read it.

I like tales about heroes, and this is a good one.

Aug
29

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Sword-and-Sorcery Kickstarter

hulk computerSo here’s a cool thing. This probably isn’t the Kickstarter you expected me to announce (that one’s still a couple of weeks out) but it’s good news nonetheless. Earlier in the year I was asked if I wanted to write a story for a new sword-and-sorcery anthology from Zombies Need Brains. I said yes, and now the Kickstarter is live, which means sooner or later my story will be in print along with those written by some other fine folks. You can find all the details in the official press release below. And here’s the link.

Begin hereafter the press release:

The latest Kickstarter from Zombies Need Brains is now live! We have three new anthologies–THE RAZOR’S EDGE, GUILDS & GLAIVES, and SECOND ROUND: A RETURN TO THE UR-BAR–with some stunning anchor authors, special reward level, stellar early backer and high backer incentives, and a bunch of stretch goals that we’d really like to reach ASAP. Keep in mind that as soon as the Kickstarter funds, we’ll do an open call for submissions to all three of the anthologies for all of you writers out there! Check it out, choose a reward level that works for you, and then BACK THE PROJECT! Featuring Troy BucherSC ButlerPatricia BrayGerald BrandtWilliam C. DietzDb JacksonChris KennedyKay KenyonSharon LeeSteve MillerSteve PerrySeanan McGuire, L.E. Modesitt, Jr., Jacey BedfordGini KochJuliet E McKenna, C.E. Murphy, Kristine SmithKari SperringDavid FarlandDavid B. CoeJames EngeEsther Friesnerr, Howard Andrew Jones, and Violette Malan.

 

Aug
28

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Editorial Sneak Peek

Tales 1 smallerToday I thought I’d provide a sneak peek at the editorial I’m drafting for the first issue of Tales From The Magician’s Skull, which is a behind-the-scenes look at how it came together and what it’s all about.

First, though, is a video of all the cool stuff Joseph Goodman had at the Goodman Games GenCon booth. There were treasures galore, and not just for gamers. You should have seen all those old fantasy paperbacks! Joseph’s love for Appendix N fiction was behind Dungeon Crawl Classics from the start, and he’s trying to get that fiction much easier to find for all interested parties… and, as this magazine shows, devoted to trying to get more fiction in print inspired by similar sources.

Now, the editorial.

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Aug
25

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Appendix N and Fantasy Exploration

DungeonMasterGuide4CoverWhile I’d been introduced to fantasy fiction when my mom read me The Hobbit, it was Dungeons & Dragons that sent me exploring for more of it. Appendix N lay at the very back of The Dungeon Master’s Guide, and there were treasures within. The problem was that the library didn’t HAVE most of those treasures. I’ve sometimes wondered how my writing and reading life would have differed if the library had actually held any Robert E. Howard books, not to mention a whole bunch of other things Appendix N said were must reads. The library DID have the Amber series, but the first few books were checked out for months.

Fortunately there were used bookstores in town. And even more fortunately I found a great copy of Swords Against Death by some guy that Appendix N recommended highly, Fritz Leiber. The first story wasn’t much of a thing, kind of an intro. But from there… wow. I knew I’d found something really good. It remains one of the finest sword-and-sorcery collections I’ve ever read, and my favorite of all the Lankhmar books. Sure, there are other great Lankhmar stories, but I don’t think any other Lankhmar book is as consistently excellent.

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Writing

Mind Meld!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

I was invited to join the Mind Meld this week at SF Signal, and along with some fine folks, I discourse at length about how speculative fiction changed…

Writer at Work

Monday, October 14, 2013

Hulk  still wanting to smash story, so Hulk just post link today. Hulk hear good thing about Lone Wolf adventure books. Many free now, on the web, and…

Out of the Mud

Friday, October 4, 2013

Wow, what a busy week. I was working on my truck until 9:00 Wednesday night and spent part of Thursday morning tinkering some more until I finally gave…

Writer’s Desk

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Here at Jones central I spent a long weekend putting my study into complete order. It had been converted into my mother’s convalescent room while she was staying…

Kaiju Rising

Monday, September 9, 2013

Shh. So I’m not supposed to tell you this, but I’m one of the authors who will be unlocked if funding is met and exceeded in a new…