Jul
31
2020
1

‘Job Along the Borderlands’ short story is up on Patreon!

The Tom Vargas story was rapidly becoming a novella. Job Along the Borderlands is a Fermi Resolution story that will appear in the short story collection, mind you. So: feedback is welcome.

Patreon!

Jul
01
2020
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FERMI RESOLUTION Short story sampler away!

(Crossposted to Kickstarter)

If you’re a backer for FROZEN DREAMS, you should be getting an email with a link to the short story sampler at any moment. It’s in .mobi, .epub, and .pdf form. A few things to note:

  • This sampler has been edited, but not professionally. It will be, when the stories become part of the larger short story collection that I’ll be doing after this project is over. I’ve done a few pass-throughs and had people beta-read it, but think of this as an advanced reader copy. Typos and whatnot may be present, and there may be changes later.
  • It’s thus not commercially available. This is the only place you’re going to be able to read the original short story until I do the full collection (which will have at least one more original story in it).
  • If there are any issues, let me know!

And that’s mostly it. Next up: the books! They’re supposed to arrive any day now.

May
23
2020
3

Call for Beta Readers (Short Story Sampler)

I got six short stories that need to be read and critiqued. Well, actually I have quite a few more, but these are the ones that are going to be part of the Kickstarter short story sampler, so they’re higher priority. For each of them I need an idea of what worked, what didn’t, and what needs fixing; and I need them gone over in the next three to four weeks. If this sounds interesting, let me know and I’ll send ’em on over.

Thanks in advance and don’t worry if this isn’t your sort of thing.

Written by in: Books | Tags:
Oct
13
2019
8

The House, Part 31/31

It is done. 8,287 words, if you’re curious.

http://moelane.com/tag/the-house/

If you think you understand power, you do not. If you know that you understand power, then you still do not, but at least you have the self-confidence needed to push your way through when your understanding fails. In the end, it is about somehow surviving when forces beyond your comprehension manifest.  If doing that require a lie, well, that is much more commendable than using blood.

Poor Wayne and his people would have used an imaginatively cobbled-together ‘ritual’ to free the Owl from the house.  Which is what I had done, of course; in fact, I had a copy of one written up, on the off chance that the cultists had been truly foolish and simply murdered me on the spot .  The difference between me and them was that I was self-aware enough to know that all rituals are meaningless, and that what really mattered was intent.  My intent was to free the Owl, without wrecking the neighborhood.

(more…)

Oct
11
2019
1

The House, Part 30/x.

http://moelane.com/tag/the-house/

Wayne frowned. “That was easy,” he said.

One of his cultists stirred. “Too easy,” she said. “There’s some kind of trick going on.”

This time I did laugh, if only to see them wince. “Very well.  I will not do the ritual, then.  I assume someone will take these handcuffs off before you all leave?  It is not like I invited any of you here.”

(more…)

Oct
10
2019
5

The House, Part 29/X.

http://moelane.com/tag/the-house/

Forgive me, for I have never written much about the basement before now.  There was always something about it that made me wary. I was never frightened of the basement, even after the dreams started. I could go down there and do laundry and change the filter on the furnace and the rest of it.  But I always felt like a not unwelcome guest in that space, and I instinctively comported myself accordingly. So naturally, Wayne and his fellow cultists (I assume) simply clumped down the stairs with me in tow, and with all the solemnity and dignity of a flock of pigeons.  

(more…)

Oct
09
2019
6

The House, Part 28/x

http://moelane.com/tag/the-house/

I had not invited Wayne to the house on Halloween night, but I was unsurprised when he arrived anyway.  Neither was I surprised to discover that he had brought friends with him; a half-dozen in all, with the air of men and women who wished that they were wearing hooded cloaks. But I admit to a certain amount of outraged startlement when they seized me.

(more…)

Oct
08
2019
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The House, Part 27/x.

http://moelane.com/tag/the-house/

That was two weeks before Halloween; and, true to his word, Wayne put together a seasonal mailer for the neighborhood that made sure that every house got its candy, no more than three days before the holiday.  As it would have been a week before the candy had lost its alarming virtues, I had plenty of time — oh, I suppose that I should note here that as I dreamed, I learned things. Things that I will not write down, now or ever.  Most people are not worthy of learning them. So the whispers in my dreams told me, and my waking mind sees no reason to disagree.

To continue, then: most people in the neighborhood consumed the candy as a matter of course.  Indeed, one might say that they felt almost compelled to, although more accurately they were enticed to.  But there was always going to be a few people who had not taken the bait, for one reason or another, which meant that a more personal approach would be needed.

I debated whether or not to bother, honestly. A gap here and there probably would not matter.  But in the end I decided to be as thorough as possible, and it is a point of pride for me that I managed to ensure that every adult for three blocks around had eaten one of my candies by the day of Halloween.

The children, of course, would be well fed that night.  And later? I suspected that the house would be, too.

Oct
07
2019
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The House, Part 26/x.

http://moelane.com/tag/the-house/

But Wayne proved useful. It turns out that I found it helpful, when doing the sort of thing that I was doing, to have someone who studiously avoids asking too many questions.  In fact, when I came to him with an odd request, he asked only two.

“This candy that you would like the agency to mail out as a promotion,” he said, fiddling with the sample that I had brought to him to look at. “I assume that there is nothing wrong with it?”

(more…)

Oct
06
2019
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The House, Part 25/x.

http://moelane.com/tag/the-house/

While this was going on, it seemed that I was always now running into Wayne, for one reason or another.  This saddened me: first, because it confirmed my suspicion that the man had been feigning friendship all along.  But second and much worse, he began to let slip hints about rituals and hidden lore and secret orders. Ritual magic, in other words.

Even before I took up residence in the house I was skeptical about magicians and rituals and the rest of that claptrap.  The field of occultism is full of outright frauds, hyper-credulous babblers, and the occasional half-demented scholar who could not explain a truly uncanny event even when it was veritably manifesting in front of their nose.  And I have met them all, usually just before they asked me for fifty dollars. Of the lot, I liked the frauds best: they knew when to cut their losses early, and never presumed on their welcome.

I normally found true believers in ritual magic annoying, in other words.  But now that I had actually found something definitely supernatural? My reaction to true believers was, if anything, worse. There are some things that simply cannot be read in a grimoire; and if you have not directly experienced those things, then you cannot understand them, and it will be obvious that you do not understand.  At least, it will be obvious to those of us who have directly experienced those things. Which I now have; and it was increasingly obvious to me that Wayne had not.

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