Thursday, February 23, 2017

Bundle Up and Escape! (With Bonus Short Story, and Author Outing at the End!)

We all need an escape now and then, and I am delighted to be able to offer my readers the opportunity to leave their daily stress behind and visit my characters and their fictional towns.
But right now I have an even better opportunity for you to find some new escapes, with the Escapist Bundle from StoryBundle!


Allyson Longueira of WMG Publishing gathered a bunch of great escapist fiction and it's available now. Rather than babble on about how wonderful these writers are (though they really are!) I'll let Allyson tell you in her own words:

THE ESCAPIST BUNDLE
 The Escapist Bundle - Curated by Allyson Longueira, WMG Publishing
Ever feel like you need to escape from reality for a while? A day, a week, four years—whatever it takes. It seems like many of us feel that way right now, so what better time for some escapist fiction?
Hence, this new Escapist Bundle for StoryBundle, an entertaining vacation of the written word and a bit of a new format for StoryBundle.
You see, the eleven fantastic books in this bundle come from authors tied together by, among other accolades, their inclusion in a single volume of Fiction River, in this case a volume called Recycled Pulp. For those of you unfamiliar with Fiction River, it's an original anthology series that Adventures Fantastic calls "one of the best and most exciting publications in the field today."
With 22 volumes published so far, Recycled Pulp proves one of the most creative volumes. Inspired by the fantastic, escapist pulp fiction of the last century, the amazing authors in this volume were tasked with creating modern escapist fiction from nothing but a pulp-inspired title. The results were fantastic, indeed.
Ten of those authors have provided books for the bundle. Like the diverse genre mix of stories Fiction River is famous for, this bundle also features a diverse genre mix of books. But they all have one very important thing in common—they are the perfect escape from everyday life.
Included in the bundle is, of course, Fiction River: Recycled Pulp, edited by John Helfers. We also have: Lisa Silverthorne's Isabel's Tears, a novel about a magical inn; Dayle A. Dermatis' Waking the Witch, a gothic mystery novel with some paranormal elements and a light romance; Kelly Washington's The Pale Waters, the first novella in a four-part epic journey; Erica Lyon's Hot Waters, a steamy sea adventure novel; and New York Times bestselling author Kristine Kathryn Rusch's The War and After, five historical fantasy stories of magic and revenge.
As a bonus, we have Rebecca Senese's ten-story science fiction collection Tales of Possibilities; Thomas K. Carpenter's Revolutionary Magic, a historical fantasy and the first in the Dashkova Memoirs; Annie Reed's A Death in Cumberland, a moody police procedural; Nebula Award finalist Cat Rambo's Neither Here Nor There, a double collection of alt-world and real world fantasy stories; and last but not least, USA Today bestselling author Dean Wesley Smith's The Slots of Saturn, the origin story for his fan-favorite superhero Poker Boy.
As always, at StoryBundle, you name your own price—whatever you feel the books are worth, and a portion of the proceeds goes to charity—in this case, SMART (Start Making a Reader Today). For $5 (or more, if you feel generous), you'll get the basic bundle of six books in any eBook format—WORLDWIDE. If you pay $14 (or more, if you feel generous), you'll get the five bonus books as well.
The Escapist Bundle runs for three weeks only. This is cheaper than any vacation, and best of all, you get to enjoy it from wherever you are. Now, that's a true escape. – Allyson Longueira
The initial titles in the Escapist Bundle (minimum $5 to purchase) are:
  • Waking the Witch by Dayle A. Dermatis
  • Hot Waters by Erica Lyon
  • Recycled Pulp by Fiction River
  • The Pale Waters by Kelly Washington
  • Isabel's Tears by Lisa Silverthorne
If you pay more than the bonus price of just $15, you get all five of the regular titles, plus SIX more!
  • A Death in Cumberland by Annie Reed
  • Neither Here Nor There by Cat Rambo
  • The Slots of Saturn by Dean Wesley Smith
  • The War and After by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
  • Revolutionary Magic by Thomas K. Carpenter
  • Tales of Possibilities by Rebecca M. Senese
This bundle is available only for a limited time via http://www.storybundle.com. It allows easy reading on computers, smartphones, and tablets as well as Kindle and other ereaders via file transfer, email, and other methods. You get multiple DRM-free formats (.epub and .mobi) for all books!
It's also super easy to give the gift of reading with StoryBundle, thanks to our gift cards – which allow you to send someone a code that they can redeem for any future StoryBundle bundle – and timed delivery, which allows you to control exactly when your recipient will get the gift of StoryBundle.
Why StoryBundle? Here are just a few benefits StoryBundle provides.
  • Get quality reads: We've chosen works from excellent authors to bundle together in one convenient package.
  • Pay what you want (minimum $5): You decide how much these fantastic books are worth. If you can only spare a little, that's fine! You'll still get access to a batch of exceptional titles.
  • Support authors who support DRM-free books: StoryBundle is a platform for authors to get exposure for their works, both for the titles featured in the bundle and for the rest of their catalog. Supporting authors who let you read their books on any device you want—restriction free—will show everyone there's nothing wrong with ditching DRM.
  • Give to worthy causes: Bundle buyers have a chance to donate a portion of their proceeds to SMART, a group that provides early reading support, access to books and community engagement to positively impact literacy outcomes and provide equitable opportunity for all kids!
  • Receive extra books: If you beat the bonus price, you'll get the bonus books!
StoryBundle was created to give a platform for independent authors to showcase their work, and a source of quality titles for thirsty readers. StoryBundle works with authors to create bundles of ebooks that can be purchased by readers at their desired price. Before starting StoryBundle, Founder Jason Chen covered technology and software as an editor for Gizmodo.com and Lifehacker.com.
For more information, visit our website at storybundle.com, tweet us at @storybundle and like us on Facebook.





And for those of you who are scratching your heads and wondering why YorkWriters is posting about a bundle that doesn't have a York writer included?  Surprise! There is a York in there; she's just hiding behind the name Erica Lyon. (Oh, and there is a Christy Fifield story in Recycled Pulp, too.)


There's a longish story that goes with that name, but the bottom line is that Christina F. York was writing sweet romance and Erica wrote something a little, umm, spicier. Something Christina's grandmother would definitely not approve. Grandma is gone now, and although I miss her I no longer have to worry about upsetting her and thus Erica can come out into the open.
Bonus!! Along with the original Hot Waters novel, this volume contains a never-before-released sequel story!

So bundle up with this StoryBundle and escape to other places, and other times!

 

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Spy Girls, New Stories, Minions at Work, and Our House Blew Down Just a Little...

Steve here:

Yes, it's disgraceful how infrequently we update this site. We'll try to to better. (Yeah, we always say that.)

We've been pretty quiet lately. It's been a very distracting year for us, what with some major storm damage to our house in December of 2015 which resulted in the demolition of a garage and sun-porch, and a major (and troubled) construction project to replace that space with a new, two-story, multi-use building that will serve as shop, studio, storage building, and typing hide-away. It should have been done in July or August of 2016, but due to some snafus with the city, I am, as I type this, waiting for the inspector to come by and make the final structural inspection of the building. There's still a bit of work to do, but if we can pass that inspection, we'll be on the final lap to finishing it and moving in! Hurrah!

During the chaos, our writing and publishing projects mostly got back-burnered, but we're ramping back up, and we do have a smattering of news to announce.

Most exciting to me is that Chris (writing as Christy Fifield, as she will for most or all of her new work), is cranking up a new period mystery series called "Spy Girls."

It's set in an adults-only condo complex in southern California during the swinging 70s. The premise is that a pair of inconspicuous older ladies bond over shady goings on in their community, learning in the process that they share a history in intelligence work in WWII and the Cold War. People may take them for granted, but these two seniors have a very particular set of skills, and they aren't afraid to apply them to criminal activity, crooked condo-developers, and of course, murder! It should be great fun.

But while developing the novel series, Chris has been writing a series of stories featuring the individual adventures of her two protagonists while they were still spies. Be it bringing down Nazi saboteurs on the WWII home front or chasing spies in Monaco, these two have quite a history. Tsunami Ridge Publishing will be collecting the first five stories, along with all new essays by Chris putting the stories in historical context and filling in the background. Look for details soon (cover shown is preliminary).

Both of us also have short fiction publications coming up in a new bi-monthly romance magazine called "Heart's Kiss," edited by Denise Little. The first issue, with one of Chris' stories, is out now, and I have two stories in the pipeline for future issues.

Chris has published romance novels before, (See her books "Dream House" and "Loaves and Kisses," both written as Christina F. York) but this is a new experience for me. Certainly the stories I've sold them aren't typical romance (There are super-heroes, and magic cocktail monkeys!), but Denise, the editor, thinks they fit, so who am I to argue? In any case, I do have a tendency to write from the heart, so maybe it isn't as unlikely as it seems to me.

The first issue is available on Amazon in paper and ebook, so if you like love stories and romance, you really should check it out!

Finally, our most unusual project by far: My weekly web-comic, "Minions at Work," is currently in "cold open mode," with a big reboot storyline and full-on launch once this danged building is finished. I started doing "Minions at Work" cartoons on the web back in 2006, years before those annoying yellow guys came along. It's a comic about the work-a-day adventures of the Minions of Evil serving a rotating cast of incompetent Evil Overlords.

Sooner or later, we all end up working for the Forces of Evil, be it McDonalds, Wal-Mart, Volkswagen, the DMV, or an insecure lizard-man hatching his schemes in a hollow volcano.

Oh, and the comic is photo-illustrated using action figures with miniature sets and props, so we can be just exactly UNLIKE all the other web-comics! Our original comics, which ran 2006-2012 were rather modest single-panel offerings shots on a two-foot square space on my workbench, but our new cartoons are upping the ante, with bigger-multi-panel, and sometimes serialized, stories. With the full launch, I'm also planning bigger, better, sets, props, and photography.

Check out the new website at www.TheMinionsAtWork.com, where you'll find hundreds of cartoons, old and new, and can check out our weekly new adventures.

That's all I've got for now, but we've got multiple other projects moving again, so look for more announcements in the near future. (Seriously this time!)

                                               - Steve



Thursday, November 19, 2015

Hello, Orycon 37!


Steve here:

Greetings to those of you finding us from our appearance at Orycon 37. It's out first convention in many years, and we hope you had a good time. (Since I'm writing this BEFORE the convention, I hope we did too!)

For those of you who are here for the "Outline a Novel in an Hour" exercise questions and followups, you'll find them in a post HERE. If you have comments, suggestions, or would like to tell us how you used the exercise, or report results, we'd love to hear from you in the comments.

Yes, there are quite a few cobwebs around the site, and for that I appologize. Health and family issues have kept us (except for Chris' ongoing mystery series) somewhat sidelined the last few years, but we're working hard to change that up! Here are some relevant links to keep up with that.:

Want to win a free copy of Chris's latest mystery? Join our "Vacation is Murder" mystery mailing list. One in twenty wins (while supplies last, U.S. and Canada addresses only)!
Steve York on Twitter
Chris's Mystery Page: Christy Mystery
Steve's In-the-process-of-relaunching webcomic Minions at Work (beta site).
Christy Mystery on Facebook
Bad Agent Sydney (Our evil little cat has become a literary agent, and occasionally snarks about agents and the publishing business.)

We don't spend enough time writing as it is, and this stuff takes up valuable writing time and makes us nothing. If you find any of it useful, our tin cup is always open through the link below, and your contributions of any size will encourage more useful stuff in the future. Thanks!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

One of Steve's stories in a new name-your-price Science Fiction Story Bundle



Now and for the next thee weeks (a little over 22 days from the time of this post, according to their web-site clock) one of my stories, "Radio Free Future," is a small part of (via the anthology, "Fiction River: Time Steams") a great time-travel ebook StoryBundle. 

Name your own price and get six great titles (including "Time Streams"), or pay at least $14 and get six bonus titles as well. 

The bundle is curated by New York Times best-seller Kevin J. Anderson and includes a great lineup of writers, including best sellers and award winners such as Bob Mayer, Robin Brande, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Steven Savile, Dean Wesley Smith, and many others.

Get it while it lasts at:
https://storybundle.com/scifi


Monday, March 2, 2015

A new mystery (and a chance to win a signed copy for free!)

On sale March 4th
Chris (writing as Christy Fifield) has a new mystery coming out this week, the forth installment in her "Haunted Souvenir Shop" series. More northern-Florida murder and mystery, and more of Bluebeard, the haunted parrot!

Of course, you should go reserve your copy at your favorite book seller right now, but you could also potentially win a signed copy for free! We're trying to build our newsletter mailing list, and as an incentive to join, Chris(ty) has set aside twenty advance copies from her personal stash to be signed and sent out to subscribers.  Here's how it works: For every 25 people who sign up, she sends out a signed copy, until those 20 copies are gone. Every time we get 25 more people, YOU get another chance to win. So don't just sign up yourself. Spread it around and share it with your mystery loving friends.

And don't worry. We'll only send out an occasional newsletter or notification of new books and events. We won't clog your inbox, or share your list with others.

How do you sign up for our mailing list? Just click HERE.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Wartime Angel of Mercy

More pictures from my research trip: A US Army, Bell H-13 medivac helicopter. This is the iconic helicopter seen in the opening of every episode of the TV series MASH. In the Korean conflict of the 1950s, these pioneering helicopters airlifted thousands of wounded soldiers from battlefields to nearby mobile surgical hospitals where lifesaving help awaited. Stretchers were strapped to external racks on the skids at either side of the helicopter.

The workhorse H-13, and its civilian version the Bell Model 47, more than any other single machine, proved the unique capabilities of the helicopter in war and peacetime. Even as it proved itself as a saver of lives, military strategists were also considering its possibilities as a killing machine, and used it to test the concept of an armed attack helicopter, later brought to fruition by the famous Bell "Huey," and the "Huey Cobra" of Vietnam.

The H-13, the soldiers who flew it, and their tangled place in history, play a pivotal role in my next "Panorama Beach" mystery, "The Beat of Angel's Wings," which I'm writing now.

Picture taken at the Army Aviation Museum at Ft. Rucker, Alabama.

Steve Back From Florida Research Trip

Steve:

I just returned from a two-week writing-research trip to the Florida panhandle and south-east Alabama. I just unloaded the SD card from my camera to my PC, netting 1300+ photos and videos taken in the last two weeks. Actually, there are a couple more cards to dump that are partially filled with stuff from the trip, so I'm guessing the total will be at least 1500 files by the time I'm through.
Chris and I both have mystery series set in the Florida panhandle, my period "Panorama Beach Mysteries," and Chris's (writing as Christy Fifield) "Haunted Gift Shop" contemporary cozy mysteries. 

Since she couldn't come, I had to be her surrogate researcher, and in addition to taking photos, I mailed back a box of southern cookbooks and tacky Florida souvenirs to act as inspiration. I just flew in last night, so I was surprised when the box I mailed late on Sunday in a small Alabama town ended up here today. Despite my rush packing job, only one souvenir was broken. It looks like the little glass bottle full of shells and sand at the lower right may have had an encounter with the sea-shell behind it, and punched a little hole in the glass. Oh, well, it was my least favorite of all these items. My favorite is the wonderfully macabre alligator shot glass near center. If you can't read it, it says "send more tourists!" I was also pleased with the parrot snow-globe, as Chris's books feature a foul-mouthed parrot that sometimes channels a ghost.

My research was of a more serious nature, delving into Florida history, historic buildings, Florida plants, small-town life in the 60s, and military aviation.

I'll be posting some of my photos as time goes on.