Friday, 29 July 2011

Fifteenth Friday Flash: Santos Returns

*Apologies that my #fridayflash is late this week. My laptop decided to die on me. Borrowing my brother's to post this. This is a follow up to Gorilla Pequeno it doesn't seem to have the same punch, but treating it as a bridge to a more exciting Santos tale I will be working on soon. (You know at the end of a movie where they sometimes have a little write up on what the characters are doing now. Think of it as one of those)

Life was hard for Santos, no matter how he explained his jaunt as a strip club performer his wife didn't believe him. He even got the night club owner to phone her, but she dismissed it, saying it was one of his friends or a hired actor. He soon realized she would find an excuse not to believe him no matter what he said, and it didn’t take him long to find out why; she had been having an affair with the flamboyant lion tamer.

Having had enough he unhooked their trailer home and took the truck; leaving the carnival for good. Not one to dwell on his misfortune he set out to find a new job. Being small of stature everyone was kind to him, but all said they weren't hiring or they had nothing that would suit his skills.

Just when he thought he would have to swallow his pride and return to stripping he got an unexpected phone call. It was a man named Winston T. Ford. He was a talent agent and he wanted to represent Santos. Unknown to Santos he had become an internet star. A video of him taken by a woman in the strip club had gone viral. It had over fifty million hits.

His first gig was to advertise for an eat healthy campaign. Santos jumped at the chance.

The commercial was an instant hit and within days he was a household name. Billboards with his image were everywhere. Youngsters worldwide were copying his jig. It became to be known as the Banana Dance. And whenever he was spotted in public he was asked to perform the dance. At first he was more than happy to oblige, but it soon got too much for him and restricted it to autographs when he had a chance.

Life was good until his wife filed for divorce, demanding half of his assets and future profits. It stressed Santos no end, but Winston soon got him calmed down and said he would handle it. And handle it he did. A ruthless divorce lawyer was hired and it didn't take her long to prove that Santos' wife had been having an affair. In the end his now ex-wife settled out of court for a vastly reduced maintenance plan. In addition in a separate case Santos was granted sole custody of his daughter after it was proved his ex-wife had an unstable lifestyle.

Life was all roses again, but for how long?

Monday, 25 July 2011

General Update

Hi all,

Just wanted to let everyone know how things are going. Spoke with my publisher yesterday. The Red Stone will be available on Kindle soon. In the meantime you can still get the paperback versions from your favourite online retailer and the Kindle version of Zoolin Vale and the Chalice of Ringtar from Amazon for only $3.44/£2.14. (Free first chapter sample)

Other than that have been working on an Urban Fantasy. About 51k in. I had to reread my progress so far to catch up on where the story was. Finished up yesterday and hope to have the first draft finished in the next two months or so.

You can find reviews for the books in the links section on the right hand side.

Best places to find my books.

The Red Stone: Amazon The Book Depository Exclusive Books Goodreads

Zoolin Vale and the Chalice of Ringtar: Amazon The Book Depository Exclusive Books Goodreads

How have things been progressing by you?

Friday, 22 July 2011

Fourteenth Friday Flash: Frankie Goes to Tripoli

Frankie had had enough. Everyday it was the same crap over and over again. The media couldn't seem to go a minute without mentioning it. Phone hacking this, phone hacking that. Frankie just wanted them to grow up. It wasn't the first time someone had done something devious to get ahead and certainly wouldn't be the last. To put it in a nutshell humanity was pissing Frankie off.

That's why he liked being an Orc. If an Orc had a problem with another Orc he would just punch the bugger out. Normally out stone cold. And if it happened to him, he more than likely deserved it.

But what could he do? The people involved had been arrested, companies were ruined and jobs were lost. Causing them more harm seemed excessive. Plus reasoning with the media was impossible and would most probably make it worse if it was.

That's when he decided he would make his own news. A story so large it would get everyone's attention. Yeah, that's right. He was going invade Libya. He was going to do what humanity didn't have the balls to do. Utilizing his Orc Special Forces (OSF) they were going to take Gaddafi out once and for all.

It wouldn't be a cheap operation, but the bounty the rebels had put on his head was more than enough to cover expenses. Plus knowing a few key officers in the coalition wasn't a bad thing either. Some had even offered some unofficial help.

“Frankie,” said his second in command through his earpiece. Jordan was a chameleon/human hybrid. He had blended in as one of the reporters covering Gaddafi's latest TV interviews. “He's about to talk.”

“Excellent, let me know when he has everyone's attention.”

“I could disguise myself as one of his mistresses and take him out, real quiet like.”

“Jordan, we have to make a statement here, remember?”

“I know, shock and awe.”

“That's my boy!”

“Okay, go go go! He's just started one of his rambling rants that puts everyone into a trance.”

Frankie and the rest of his hidden Orcs jumped into action. In no time Frankie had the crusty dictator by the throat. All Gaddafi's personal guards were dead, or wishing they were. Frankie's Orcs went off to secure the rest of the compound.

Gaddafi was mumbling something. Frankie wasn't listening. It was his moment now. He was going to show them what a real news story was about. His huge army knife hovered millimeters away from the dictator’s neck.

“You can't kill him,” said one of the reporters. “It's against the law.”

“That's where you're wrong. It's well documented his men has attacked Orc convoys. Sometimes killing my people. That's a crime punishable by death. And you can blather on about how this is not my kingdom, but I don't give a damn. It's about time...”

There was loud scream. It was a woman reporter. She was on her phone.

Everyone turned to her.

“What is it?” asked one of the reporters.

“I can't believe it!”

“Spit it out!” said Frankie.

“Paris Hilton's dog has just given birth. She's currently being interviewed.”

“Oh MY God!” screamed another reporter.

“Come! There's a TV in the bar area, let's go watch!”

Within moments Frankie was standing alone with Gaddafi.

“Son of a goblin!” Frankie grabbed Gaddafi by the beck and tossed him through the air. “These people deserve you.”

Gaddafi landed with a thud.

“Jordan, Jordan where are you?”

“Aw... she's going to call the puppy Twinkles. How sweet is that?”


“Just kidding boss, I'm right here.” Jordan tapped him on the shoulder.

“I thought the whole world had gone insane.” Frankie sat down, with his head in his hands. “That being said, I just don't care anymore. These humans are truly mad.”

“My chameleon half agrees with you.” Jordan patted Frankie on the shoulder. “What say you we go grab some beer?”

“Excellent idea. And bring Gaddafi over there. The rebels will pay us even more if we take him in alive.”

*I know there are many spellings for Gaddafi, but it's what Wikipedia and Google says so I'm sticking with it :).

Thursday, 21 July 2011

A Review of Deadlands by Lily Herne

Deadlands by Lily Herne

Lele is your typical teenager, she hates school and she has a crush on the cool guy, but there's one very large twist to her story. Everything isn't normal. When people die they don't stay dead. Yes, you've got it. She's living in the time of Zombies. Zombies that have destroyed the world and pushed humans down a notch in the food chain.

And if that wasn't bad enough a group of people known as the Resurrectionists have taken control of the enclave. The only safe spot in Cape Town. A safe spot created by the Guardians. A mysterious group who saved the vastly dwindled population from the Rotters as they are known. A group that seem to have control over the Resurrectionists.

Coming from the agriculturals Lele is new to all this and takes some time to adapt. Getting into trouble for not believing what she was hearing and saying things she shouldn't. In addition she's stuck with a step mother she doesn't like. A veteran from the zombie struggle who seems to have it in for her brother and herself.

Understandably Lele is not fond of the enclave and wants nothing more than to go back to the Agriculturals. A place her and her brother had to leave when her Gran died. Meeting an underground group known as the Mall Rats she soon discovers that everything isn't as it seems. Will she be able to return home? Read it and find out. You wont be disappointed.

Although I'm not much of a YA reader I found this book very enjoyable. The characters sounded real and it's not your normal zombie book/movie. Here the people have learned how to adapt to living with them. Some even thriving. It's a human story that is well handled and I can't wait for the sequel.

More on Lily Herne.

Her FB profile
Where you can find the book: Exclusives

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

A Review of Shadows by Joan De La Haye

Shadows by Joan De La Haye

I'm one of those horror fans who has watched quite a number of horror movies but hasn't read that many horror novels, so Shadows was some what of a treat for me. And I wasn't disappointed. It was a thrill ride; a dark twisted thrill ride that seemed to have no brakes. It exposes the darkest of human nature, but it does it in such a way that makes it believable that people would actually think these things. And I'm sure many people have and worse.

Sarah is having a rough time, her father just committed suicide, her mother has fallen to pieces, her sister seems to be handling it a little too well and her boyfriend Kevin seems to be distracted and even more distant than usual. Then it gets even worse when her tormentor materializes. A shadowy figure with yellow teeth and scary eyes that is willing to do anything to push her over the edge. Of course she is the only one able to see him, which is a good thing! You would never want to cross paths with him.

Once I was into to the book it took me a couple of days to finish it. Which is quite good for me. Normally takes me a couple of weeks to read a book.

Just one thing if you get the book. Don't read the back, get into reading it straightaway. It's a habit of mine. Less spoilers that way. It adds to the mystery and makes it more entertaining if you ask me.

Overall I highly recommend this to horror fans, but if you're a bit of a softie it would maybe best for to read it during the day. Some of the scenes might be a bit hard for you to stomach. Not that it should stop you from reading it. That's what a good horror novel is supposed to do right? Make you feel uncomfortable. Sleep with the lights on so to speak.

You know what scares me the most? I've met Joan. She's a sweet and caring person and it's hard to see where the all the darkness in the characters comes from. It just goes to show you that there is always more to a person than meets the eye! And if you ask me the world would be a duller place if it wasn't true. I can't wait to see what she comes up with for her next novel.

-You can find her on Twitter here @Joandelahaye
Her blog
Where you can buy Shadows: Amazon

Joan also recently did a post about my fantasy novel The Red Stone

Friday, 15 July 2011

Thirteenth Friday Flash: Goblin Gobbling

“I'm here today to meet Markus. One of the latest victims of goblin gobbling. Tell us what happened Markus?”

“The little buggers broken in last night and sucked them all dry. Now I have no produce today. None at all!”

“Your cows?”

“Yes, my darn cows. As you can see they are restless. It's a traumatic experience for them.”

“Enough to make their milk sour I can imagine. What are your theories on why the goblins are attacking cattle?”

“Shucks, I don't know. The taste?” said Markus leaning on a wooden fence that looked out over his farm. “Bert a couple of farms over said they sucked his goats bone dry and stole some of his chickens. The critters are more rambunctious by the day.”

“Are you happy about the patrols the local authorities have setup to protect your farm?”

“Hell no, I'm putting my own protection in place.”

“What kind of protection?”

A car horn blasted as a truck with a large cage on the back came up the dirt road.

“Just you wait and see, she's a beauty.”

The truck trundled past. The driver waving as he went by. Whatever was in the back didn't like it in there and was trying its hardest to get out. Bashing itself against the cage's sides.

“Ooee! We have a live one on our hands,” said Markus rubbing his hands together.

The reporter stood back as Markus and the driver opened up the back.

“I can't believe my eyes. It's a real life griffin. With the head and wings of an eagle and the body of a lion it truly is a terrifying beast to behold. Can you believe it folks?”

“Such a majestic creature,” said Markus as the driver unhooked the griffin's chain and pulled the beast off from the back of the truck.

“Is it legal to own one?”

“I don't own it... just a natural relocation. I feed it and it handles my goblin problem. Simple!” Markus took a piece of raw meat out of his pocket. The beast snatched it up with its massive beak. Swallowing the meat whole.

The griffin's massive eyes blinked a couple of times, as if gathering in its surroundings. It didn't seemed to be pleased. It squawked, and knocked Markus and the driver to the ground with its head.

Hooking its claw on the iron ring around its neck it yanked it off. Breaking it in two. Now free it launched itself into the air. Its massive wings flapping gracefully. Moments later it flew over the reporter's head and glided over the cow pasture. The cows scattered, avoiding the flying beast as best they could, but a calf with a 13 spray painted on the side wasn't so lucky, the griffin swooped down and carried it off into the distance.

“Damn you, Jeb, damn you...” shouted Markus hitting the driver with his hat as he tried to run away.

“So there you have it folks, goblin gobbling is truly causing havoc out here in farm country. And if you spot a griffin please do not approach and contact the relevant authorities immediately. And be sure to catch us next time when we cover the story of a mermaid that was spotted in Lake Ashford.”

* This is a follow up from The Rainbow Effect

** On a side note my fantasy novel Zoolin Vale and the Chalice of Ringtar was released on the Kindle for the first time today. Here are the links if you would like to check it out. Amazon UK Amazon US

*** Here's a link to the first book The Red Stone. It's not available on Kindle yet, but hopefully soon!

Monday, 11 July 2011

Mini Monday: Reg Shoe

“Do you have it?” I asked.

“Can't I come in first?” she asked shaking on the spot.

“Sure you can.” I opened the door wide and let her in.

“Thanks, now where's your kitchen, would love some tea.”

“In a minute Riven, did you get what we were talking about?”

Riven was silent for a second then smiled. “Are you kidding? Of course I did.”

I couldn't hold my excitement anymore. “Come on then, let me see!”

She seemed to be enjoying tormenting me. Twirling around she whipped out a sealed bag with a napkin in it.

“You sure you got enough?”

“Yes, he wiped his mouth well and proper after the meal.”

“Excellent! You make some tea while I get started.”


But I was gone before she could carry on with her protest.

I made my way to the little shed at the back the garden. Rickety and unsubstantial from the outside and modern and high tech on the inside it was my own personal Tardis. I was sometimes locked in it for days. Once inside I carefully extracted the sample and got to work.

Sometime later the door opened and Riven came in with the tea and a tray of biscuits.

“Wow, quite a setup you have here.” She said sipping her tea and leaning back on the table. “How long will it take?”

“24 hours.”

“You're kidding me.”

“Look.” I said pulling back a curtain. Behind it was a massive tube filled with water. Floating in it was a body. A totally hairless and featureless human form; a living mannequin. Tubes, cables and other apparatus were attached to it.”

Riven rubbed her hands together. “Excellent!”

“I've uploaded the sample DNA into the blank, and over the next 24 hours the blank's DNA will change to match that of the sample's.”

“This is wonderful! I hope he's going to be as intelligent as the host.”

“It's hard to say, he will be baby at first, learning to walk, talk etc, but I have no doubt he will go on to do great things.”

“But he's never going to be as good as the original?”

“Sadly no.”

“What are you going to call him?”

“Terry Pratchett Mark II.”

*This story was inspired by something @riven16 said, being a huge Terry Pratchett fan I had to run with it. Hope you get the piece's title.

Friday, 8 July 2011

Twelfth Friday Flash: Endless War

*The story below was inspired by this photo.

** you can find part two Desolation here and part three Bear Necessities here

It was the seventeenth year of the war. The opposing armies were down to one battered and die hard squadron each. Amy, one of the grunts in the Kitty Power army had been laying low for most of the war. Coming in late when she was drafted and fighting only when she had to. It had kept her safe and under the radar until today. Her commander Sergeant Whiskers had a mission for her. Amy had the best functioning Kitty powered suit left. It was practically spotless compared to her fellow soldiers' machines. Some even had to resort to fighting without one. As much as Amy disliked using the suit, it made her feel safe. It turned her five foot something frame into a eight foot fighting machine with enough power to rip open a bus.

“Amy, get your ass here, right now!”

“Yes, sir!”

Amy rushed over and stared eye to eye with her commanding officer until she had to look away. He looked like a teenager; curly haired and a high pitched voice. In fact he had the body of a fifteen year old. He was a clone officer. Made in a test tube to fight in the endless war. Brought out when he was ten years old, because the breeding facility was soon to be over run and destroyed by the enemy. Somehow he survived to be the last remaining clone warrior.

“Look at me! I want you to see how serious I am about this mission.”

Amy took a breath and stared into his white souless eyes. It always creeped her out.

“Good, now listen to me carefully, under the cover of darkness I want you to venture out into the middle of the battlefield and when you reach the middle stop.”

“Stop, sir?”

Amy began to turn away, but her commander gripped her cheeks and bored into her eyes with his. “Yes, you're going to be the bait. You know they cant resist spare parts.”

“So I go out there, leave my suit and return?”

“No, no you have to stay to tell us when to strike. Don't worry we will be positioned all around you. They won't stand a chance.”

The sun was peaking over the scarred and smoking horizon. It wouldn't be long before the enemy's sentries spotted her. Her suit powered down, Amy laid as still as possible. They had to believe the suit was empty or she was dead inside. Just as she thought she should give up and head back an armoured face peered over at her.

“Ah, crap! They're here. Attack! Attack!”

But she needn’t have said a word. An energy bolt blasted the enemy's head right off. Hyper-ventilating, Amy powered up her suit and rolled away, falling into a ditch. It was several feet deep and Amy's bulky armour was trapped between the sides. She had to get out before she was blasted. She flailed and kicked. Explosions, shouts, and gun fire rung out above her. It sounded like both squads were going all out.

What seemed like an age later she managed to pull herself free. Huffing and puffing she scanned the area around her. They were dead. They were all dead. No life signs of her squad on her HUD and the enemy's squad were scattered all around her. Pulling off her helmet and taking in a deep breath she plopped down.

She was all alone. What should she do next?

She decided to head back to base. Maybe she would investigate that abandoned secret cloning facility she had heard about, but that could wait for tomorrow. She was tired, hungry and wanted nothing more than to have a meal and take a nap.

Friday, 1 July 2011

Eleventh Friday Flash: The Rainbow Effect

Illustration by Storm Shorter. Follow her on Twitter @Shewolf222

You can also found out all about her book The Key to Eternal Glory here

Capital City – The government has vowed to clampdown on the scourge of schools across the country. Yes, they are going to ban the use of unicorn shavings. Previously not legislated at all the drug was and most probably still is used by pubescent girls nationwide. Used to get a high it can have them in a stupor for days on end. There have been reports of girls going into deep comas.

Of course the UBA (Unicorn Breeders Association) is up in arms about this. Their biggest source of income is set to be wiped over night. The head of the association. Gangreen Magee is quoted as saying: “What are we going to do with all these unicorns? We can only do so many kids parties before they start getting rowdy. It's a damn shame!”

There have been massive online petitions from girls who say it's all harmless and only a bit of fun. I stopped and asked a girl who was waving a placard around that said: “Give us horn or give us death!” why she liked the shavings so much. She had this to say. “It's like so cool and stuff. After school I just hang with my girlfriends zoning out with it. There are rainbows and butterflies.”

To get a male perspective I stopped to an ask boy who seemed to have been dragged there by his girlfriend what he thought of the whole thing. “It's bogus dude. Girls have all the fun. I tried the stuff and it all did was give me hives. It should be banned. Look at Mary (his girlfriend) she's dancing around like a loon.”

So will the rainbow effect as the kids have called the unicorn shavings high be a thing of the past or will it go underground? I spoke to Iam Naught-High a drug specialist about the problem. He had this to say. “Imagine chocolate and times it by ten. That's what the rainbow effect is like. It's horribly addictive. It's a serious concern, girls in this stage of their lives are very vulnerable. Banning is the only option, but back to your question. Yes, it will go underground and the price will skyrocket.”

There you have it folks. For good or bad the rainbow effect is here to stay. Be sure to read my next article where I will be discussing the growing problem of goblin gobbling.

*Just finished this one so I apologize if it's a bit rough around the edges