© James Pyles
Some time ago, I announced that my short story “The Deseret War” had been published in the Immortal Works anthology A Mighty Fortress: A Mormon Steampunk Anthology Book 4 edited by Holli Anderson.
There was some sort of snafu with the mailing, and I never got my copy of the book…
Cover art for the novel “Terminum” by Lyla El-Fayomi
Disclosure: This is my first review of an indie SciFi book for Reedsy Discovery. In exchange for a free digital copy of a book, they ask that the writer craft a review of between 300 to 400 words in length and have it published on their site prior to a specific date. Basically, it’s free promotion for the book, Reedsy, and the reviewer.
I chose Lyla El-Fayomi’s Terminum to review because the premise was compelling. An experimental virus stops people from aging but at random points in their lives. However, the darker side is that some of those infected will be abruptly killed by an unknown side effect called Sudden Death Syndrome.
In investigating a cure, scientists Yasmine Holloway and Leo Genix suddenly become fugitives, being hunted down both by law enforcement and bounty hunters. They are thrust into the shadowy realm of a group of covert operatives who have, perhaps for decades, been aware of a conspiracy to hide the truth about the virus and to prevent them from ever delivering a cure.
Promotional image from Zombie Pirate Publishing
With so much going on in my life just now, I said I wouldn’t try to do this, but the theme is so compelling. I mean, I can probably write between 12,500-15,000 words in a week (starting tomorrow), but would it be any good?
Saturn. My favorite planet (outside of Earth) in the solar system just behind Mars (and I’ve written enough about Mars lately). I’ve even got a concept in mind. Am I crazy?
Image captured from Sam Phillips’ blog
I’m passing this along from Sam Phillips’ blog Big Confusing Words. He’s the co-founder of Zombie Pirate Publishing and they first held this event last year. I sent in an entry last year (it wasn’t selected). Thinking about it again this year, but my schedule is about to undergo a radical change, so I may not have the bandwidth.
If you’re a writer at whatever stage of development, this might be the challenge for you. Here’s part of the text from Sam’s blog:
James Pyles – photo taken by David Pyles
As you may recall, I recently announced that I was awarded third place in the “Building Your Brand” contest by Sweetycat Press.
Steven Lester Carr posted my essay on their Facebook page which I replicated here on my blog.
Grant Hudson at Inner Circle Magazine just informed me that the essays for all three award winners will be published in the May edition of that periodical, which will be out very soon.
Find out more by clicking the magazine’s link above.
Promotional image from Terror Tract Press
Yesterday, I published a bit of a tease, but have since been given permission to make a more complete announcement.
My short story “The Babel Project” has been accepted into the Terror Tract horror anthology “7 Deadly Sins”. Not including the Sweetycat Press contest winner and the Reedsy publication, that’s nine stories accepted into anthologies and periodicals so far for 2020.
You may recall that my short story From Deep Within the Skin has been published by the same press in the anthology Infestation.
Both horror stories are presented in a science fiction context, but where the former included both homegrown and alien creepy crawlies, this one, like so many other stories these days, focuses on a global pandemic threatening to wipe out all human life.
That’s all I have to say for now…
…oh, except for the opening quote:
Boise train depot circa 1920. Found at napcommissions.org
The wind was a howling wolf. Emma Elizabeth Durbin knifed her hatpin like a sabre through both her short-brimmed, kid skin hat, and mounds of luxuriant auburn hair as she exited the train’s passenger car. Scuffed shoe leather met fresh boardwalk. Her long dress and matching short jacket were oppressively warm. It was only 10:15 in the morning, and hot for June in Boise.
Checking the weight of her satchel by jiggling it in her right hand, she longed for a comfortable bath and a filling meal. Neither of them were in her near future as she clip clopped forward, desperately avoiding semi-intimate collisions with fellow passengers and locals on the platform, as she navigated through the terminal hordes.
The rest of her belongings would be delivered to her hotel, but she had someplace else to be. Assuming the information on the telegram nestled in her dark jacket pocket was accurate, and he was on time like he said he’d be, she’d be sitting across a table from the Sheriff of Idaho City in half an hour.
Cover art for Superversive anthology “Fantastic Schools 2”
You may remember I announced that my short story “Sorcery’s Preschool” was selected for publication in one of the Superversive Fantastic Schools anthologies.
Image taken from the short story’s reedsy page.
No, it doesn’t mean I won the contest, but at least I’m a contender. The prompt is:
Two people who thought they were the last people left on Earth end up meeting by chance.
As of this writing, there are 64 entries, so my chances of winning aren’t all that great. Still, I guess I’ve got a shot.
Here’s how it begins: