Stories for the Masses

The mutterings of a half-mad Canuck who writes stuff

Category: Uncategorized

Free (as in beer) Book! (Beer Not Included)

Hey, did you know that Soul of the Universe is currently available for free? That’s right! From the morning of September 2nd until midnight on September 6th (Pacific Standard Time) Soul of the universe is free in the Kindle store.

If you are in the UK go to

If you are in the US go to

If you don’t know what I’m talking about, Soul of the Universe was the first book the Anthology Club ever published. It’s a collection of six stories by four authors. All the stories are inspired by a particular piece of music, and they span all the genres under the sun, from western to sci-fi to eye-leaking sentimentality. Here’s the cover:SotU300logo

This book is one of the things I’m most proud of having been involved in. If you haven’t read it, go get it while it’s free (and then buy one or two of the other books I’ve published – the links are in the back).

Human 76 – The Hunted

Steven Paul Watson has a lovely story here. At the risk of being a bit spoiler-y, it has a happy ending. This is noteworthy in any project headed up by Mike Wombat.

In this tale, we have a man working hard against impossible odds to lure cannibalistic reaver-type folks away from his injured daughter while hoping desperately that his wife is still alive.

We also see not only Ghabrie’s bad-assery and toughness, but also the more emotional and vulnerable side. It’s good to be reminded that she is still a very young woman on a very difficult road. It’s good to be reminded of why she’s on that road. It’s good to see her as a more rounded character with depth and vulnerability.

It also, as I’ve mentioned, has a happy ending which is a great change of pace.

The book is available at in paperback and e-book formats. The e-book is no longer free, but all proceeds from either format go to Water is Life, so you should buy it. It is also available at Barnes and Noble as paperback and for the Nook, and at  Amazon (paperback) and Amazon (kindle).

Here’s What I’m Going to Do

Cover for Human 76There’s a funny thing about contributing to an anthology that I’ve never really considered much before now, perhaps mostly because this is the first time I’ve been a contributor without also being an editor. With Human 76, I was involved in discussions and conversations about the stories and the process, and I did read early drafts of a few of the stories. But I haven’t read most of the stories in the book at all and I haven’t read the final versions of any of them, save my own.

I have ordered my paperback copies, of course. One for me, one for my Dad, and a couple for the library of the school where I teach. I had them all shipped to my parent’s place in Canada, because we’ll be visiting there in a few weeks and it was drastically more expensive to have them shipped to China. I was planning to wait until  we got there to read the book, but… well, I don’t want to wait that long.

And that’s when I had the idea to do what I’m going to do.

I have grabbed a copy of the ebook, which is available for free right now through and soon through Amazon, and I am not going to wait. I’ll read and review each individual story here on the blog, one every other day.

It will be glorious!

Welcome to the Umpteenth Version of This

I have to admit, this blog has been through so many versions in the past three years that I feel like I should refer to it as Version mumble-mumble. Like some not-as-old-as-the-character-she’s-portraying leading lady pretending to be coy about her age to Tom Hanks in a 1980s rom-com. Truth is I really don’t know how to count what iteration this is of this blog. I haven’t really been keeping track.

What I do know is that there comes a time in every blog’s life when everything that has gone before must be burned to the ground to make way for new growth. To outsiders this might seem like willful and senseless destruction. It may seem wasteful of all the work that went into it up to that point.

But it’s really not.

You see, the value of all that work was not in the result, but in the process. In creating and maintaining, and failing to maintain my previous blog, I learned a lot about how to do all that. I also got to figure out some things that worked well for me, and a lot of things that didn’t. I refined my ideas about what I want to do, what I don’t, and what (and who) this blog is for.

And once you’ve burned down the past, you can use the ashes to fertilize the future.

So… yeah. I deleted the old blog and started over again – this time with more fertilizer.

I don’t yet know how often I’ll be posting, or exactly what I’ll be posting about. One of the things I figured out in the last go-around was that I should probably be more organic.

I do want to focus more on my writing work, so I’ll be talking about projects I’m working on, and I’ll post snippets and flash fiction and so forth as it seems appropriate. I’ll also write about writing from time to time as I figure out what I’m doing and learn new things as a writer, but only if I think it would be interesting to people who read my fiction. Because that’s who this blog is for – the people who read, and enjoy, my writing.

Both of you.