What is Ages of Aenya?

OK, I've dissected enough of other people's books on my podcast. Now it's my turn. That's right, folks, it's time I get to toot my own horn. So here is your introduction to Aenya, a world blending the best of fantasy and science fiction. The books in the Aenya Series have possessed me for over... Continue Reading →

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Stephen King Tells a Fairy Tale

Fairy Tale is Stephen King’s okayest novel to date. Maybe he's gotten tired after 75 years on this planet, having written a whopping sixty-five books (wow, sixty-five!!!), but his most recent release just feels bland and uninspired. While Charlie Reade, his one and only protagonist (a bit sparse for a 600-page novel), is likable enough, there’s nothing particularly... Continue Reading →

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Cloud Atlas

I know it’s cliche, but I am going to say it anyway: I can’t believe how time flies! I can’t believe that I wrote this review TEN YEARS AGO!!! But still, even after all that time, I have yet to read anything quite as impressive or impactful.

The Art of Storytelling

No review of Cloud Atlas could do it justice. I should just type the title in bold, followed by four stars. Hell, I’d like to change my rating system to give it five. Yes, it’s that good, a work of literary genius that transcends genre. Unfortunately, the cover sure as hell doesn’t do the book any favors. I get the impression that the artist didn’t know what to do, so he just Googled a bunch of cloud imagery and Photoshopped them together. The back flap states, Mitchell is, clearly, a genius, and while I typically hate this kind of more-often-than-not false praise, I can’t help but echo the sentiment. Few writers have intimidated me like this guy has. Cloud Atlas is on a whole other level, brilliantly written and conceived, deeply textured, and so meaningful you could base an entire religion around it. And yet, I am neither bitter…

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Is Life a Meritocracy?

"Is life a meritocracy?" Does being good at something inevitably lead to success, or is success more dependent on luck: who you know and where you are born? This question keeps me up most nights, gives me anxiety, and makes me walk around my neighborhood when everyone else is asleep. In my latest podcast, I... Continue Reading →

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AI Art: Should We Be Afraid?

When I was first introduced to Midjourney, I nearly panicked. I panicked for the sake of my daughter, who endeavors to become a professional artist someday, and for artists the world over, many of whom I work with to promote the Aenya series. Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on your perspective), I found both Midjourney and Dall-E quite... Continue Reading →

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Nothing But Blackened Teeth

Nothing but blackened teeth? Eww . . . gross. Maybe someone should see a dentist. Oh, but wait, this isn't a story about dentistry; it's a horror novella set in modern-day Japan featuring the titular monster, a "Geisha" ghost with awful oral hygiene. All kidding aside, newcomer Cassandra Khaw gets a big A+ for this... Continue Reading →

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The Secret to Becoming a Great Author

What's the secret to becoming a great author? Here's a little hint: it's no secret. Yes, this title is clickbait. If you see a YouTube video or Master Class offering a quick and easy way to literary fame and fortune, they're selling you snake oil. Like it or not, it's a long, hard climb to... Continue Reading →

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The Dark Tower VII: WTF?

It's hard for me to wrap my head around Stephen King's Dark Tower finale and seventh book in the series, The Dark Tower, but I will try. I will admit I haven't been this eager to talk about a book in a long time. Imagine, if you will, William Shakespeare writing the novelization of the... Continue Reading →

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AENYA NEWSLETTER 9/14/2022

Greetings, Aenya fanatics, I'm back with more EXCITING news! And yes, there's quite a bit of interesting stuff to get through here today regarding all FOUR (count 'em four) of my books, so let's get right to it, shall we? Ages of Aenya Published by Hear Our Voices! As many of you know, I introduced... Continue Reading →

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The Rings of Power (You Know We Had to…)

You know Heather and I just had to talk about Amazon's most expensive show of all time, The Rings of Power, didn't you? As huge lovers of Tolkien's works and Peter Jackson's film adaptation, we try and parse through the honest detractors (the Tolkien purists) from the anti-woke crowd and get into the polarizing decision... Continue Reading →

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Wokism, The Culture War, and Storytelling

Yes, we're doing it again! Intrepidly, boldly, perhaps a bit foolishly . . . Heather and I step back into the midst of the culture war. The political atmosphere in this country is particularly toxic right now, but we feel it's important to take a stand, as any conscientious person should --- because what we... Continue Reading →

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The Dark Tower, Part 2: Song of Susannah

In this second part of our three-part series, Heather and I get into the nitty-gritty of Stephen King's magnum opus, The Dark Tower, to discuss the many ups and downs of his sixth book, Song of Susannah. As always, King excels at literary technique, and his talent for making us feel for his characters remains... Continue Reading →

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AENYA NEWSLETTER 08/01/22

Greetings, Aenya fans! I'm back with more exciting news ... So, what started as a fluke, something I wanted to write for myself, for dollars on Kindle, turned into one of my best works of fiction. I am talking, of course, about The Feral Girl. Seriously, I hadn't even thought to offer the book in paperback.... Continue Reading →

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Stephen King’s Dark Tower Series, Part 1

What the heck is The Dark Tower anyway? I am six books deep into King's magnum opus, and I still have no idea. (OK, that's not true, I have some clue, but not enough to know why the party of heroes: Roland, Eddie, Susannah, and Jake, are so desperately trying to get there, or why,... Continue Reading →

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GET IT NOW: THE FERAL GIRL!!!

It's finally here!!! The long-awaited prequel to Ages of Aenya.  Lost and alone, a young girl braves the jungles of Aenya armed only with her bow, becoming both predator and prey.  When food in her homeland becomes scarce, Thelana is sent away to find civilization. The days that follow become a fight to stay alive as... Continue Reading →

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Is the entire indie book industry a scam?

My two most popular posts involve scams. I've received thankful messages from hundreds of writers for steering them clear of Olympia Publishers. Yet, I feel I've done nothing but drive them into the bigger scam that is the independent book industry. Don't get me wrong. If you want to see your name in print or share... Continue Reading →

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AENYA NEWSLETTER: 5/18/22

Greetings, Aenya fans! It's been a long while since my last update . . . and for good reason. I have been working for the past month, hammering away at my keyboard for 8-10 hour shifts, to get the latest Aenya release into your hands! And I think the results speak for themselves. My beta... Continue Reading →

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AENYA NEWSLETTER 04/05/22

WELCOME BACK, fiends and fans, ladies and germs, boyz and goyls, to the ever-popular Aenya Newsletter!!! Trust me, this is going to be a good one, as you'll soon find out. So sit back, relax, and enjoy the show. The Princess of Aenya #2 cover is NOW AVAILABLE! First up on the agenda, the new... Continue Reading →

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Stephen King Kicks My Ass

Stephen King came to my house and kicked my ass. Yeah, you probably think I mean this in some sort of metaphorical way ... as in, his books are so much better than mine they put me to shame. But nope. Let me backtrack a little. My nights, as you may know, are filled with... Continue Reading →

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My Ukrainian Friend: Alexey Lipatov

Ukrainian robotIf only Ukraine had giant robots


So far so good, thank the gods, my friend Alexey is OK! And, believe it or not, he is STILL working, still producing art, some of which is clearly inspired by the awful situation in his country. I have been continuing my correspondence with him over at his DeviantArt page, but he has also started a Patreon. If you want to support this great Ukrainian artist with a little more than comments, please check it out!

https://www.patreon.com/lipatov/posts


City Service

The Art of Storytelling

The last thing I want is for this post to come off as exploitative. Right now, my thoughts are for the people of Ukraine only. What’s happening there is not just tragic, but the kind of thing that makes you question whether we’re living in a storybook. It’s like Trump and the January 6th insurrection. You keep asking yourself, “Is this really happening?”

Let’s break it down, shall we? President Vladimir Putin isn’t some misunderstood villain, he isn’t a complex, 3-dimensional character—he’s a cliche, every generic bad guy from every book/movie/show you’ve ever seen. He’s Cobra Commander, he’s Darth Vader, he’s Sauron. If this were a Tom Clancy novel, the publisher would say Putin is too unoriginal. He wants Ukraine. That’s it. And he’ll murder every man, woman, and child to get what he wants. On the flip side of this unreal coin, we have Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, playing…

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My Ukrainian Friend: Alexey Lipatov

The last thing I want is for this post to come off as exploitative. Right now, my thoughts are for the people of Ukraine only. What's happening there is not just tragic, but the kind of thing that makes you question whether we're living in a storybook. It's like Trump and the January 6th insurrection.... Continue Reading →

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Why MAUS Matters

Unless you've been living under a rock, you've probably heard about MAUS, Art Spiegelman's moving holocaust graphic novel, now recently banned by the Tennessee School Board. Schools in Tennessee are run by ninnies, apparently, because all seven members voted to keep the book from the hands of middle schoolers owing to the book's depiction of... Continue Reading →

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Aenya Lore: Queen Lumina and the Unicorn

The World of Aenya is vast and varied. Its geography encompasses disparate landscapes, city-states, races, cultures, histories, and myths. For 2022, I am introducing a new series, Aenya Lore, to showcase the tales that exist within the larger narrative of the Aenya Series, some of which, you may remember, come straight from the novels. While... Continue Reading →

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AENYA NEWSLETTER 12/01/21

Hey, Aenya fans! Boy, do I have some great stuff to share with you today. So let's get straight to it, shall we? The Princess of Aenya: Acclaim, New Cover, New Art A beautiful new cover is on its way for The Princess of Aenya! While I was completely happy with the old pic, I... Continue Reading →

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