Past is Prologue

1It’s been a while since my last update, but despite my lack of work I’ve been a very busy Bhagwan. I’ve been hard at work on several new projects, one of which I can announce today.

I sold a book. The temptation here is to say “another book,” but this is a much different kind of deal than Hearts of Iron. This is a full-on, contracted novel that will be out in Fall 2014 from Resurrection House.

It’s kind of a big deal. I’m excited about it, and over the next year I’ll be updating this page a lot regarding the process of bringing the book to market, and the market itself.

For instance, there was a bit of a press release today regarding the book, and I’m going to let my good friend and editor Mark Teppo tell you all about it.

The other new title in the list is Scott James Magner’s Homefront. Here’s the story about how that book came to be. Scott and I have known each other for more years than either of us would particularly care to enumerate, and in the last year we’ve been working together on some stories for the Foreworld Saga. Recently, we’ve been having a running conversation about military science fiction in an effort to crack the code of what constitutes a good military SF book.

A couple of weeks ago, he and I and Vlad Verano (who runs the fiercely independent Espresso machine-driven Third Place Press) were having drinks in a nautical themed bar in Ballard, WA. It’s a quaint little place, this bar, and there are maps lacquered to all the tabletops and various sorts of interesting globes suspended from the ceiling as decoration. The music in the bar is provided by an actual working turntable, and Black Sabbath’s Master of Reality is currently going round and round. I’m contemplating a pickleback, which is a shot of whiskey followed by a shot of pickle juice. This is not a dare, mind you, this is a connoisseur’s concoction, and I’m trying to figure out the mechanics of drinking both in rapid succession without a) choking or b) being a n00b and not getting the timing right.

Scott leans over and says, “What do you want, really? Enough of this talk about what we think works or doesn’t work in military SF. What do YOU want to read?”

Starship Troopers as if written by Richard K. Morgan and Joss Whedon,” I say without missing a beat, and then I down the whiskey and chase it with the pickle juice.

It’s not as toxic as it sounds. In fact, I nod to the bartender for a second one.

Several weeks later, I get an email from Scott that says, “Something like this?” and there’s a 10,000 word attachment. I read it that afternoon, and catch myself flicking the screen when I reach the end of the excerpt, wondering why the document seems to have ended. There has to be more, I tell myself. He really didn’t just . . . No, he did . . .

That’s how I came to buy Homefront. (And yes, for the writers on this mailing list: whiskey + pickle juice + Black Sabbath = perfectly suitable pitch environment)

So I’m a few more chapters in than I was on Monday when Mark broke his iPad, but I’m every bit as excited about this project as he is/was. We’re working up a cover treatment now, and as soon as it’s fit to print, I’ll have it up for everyone to see.

And before you go, you should also know this was not the only book-related news I got this week. But it’s the piece I can share with you now. Stay tuned, true believers, you’re going to love the next one.

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