While You’re Waiting….

Good news! We’ve got an official release date now for The Dragonprince’s Heir (The Dragonprince Trilogy, #3). From my publisher, Consortium Books:

We plan to release The Dragonprince’s Heir on Tuesday, June 26th, along with the debut epic fantasy Schism by Courtney Cantrell.

That’s just two weeks away! Some of you have already applied for Advance Reading Copies of the book, but the rest won’t have long to wait.

In the meantime, here are a few things you could do to help support my writing and your own entertainment:

Contribute to the Kickstarter campaign

There’s only a few days left on the KickStarter campaign, but it’s an opportunity for you to support a good cause and pre-order your personalized e-book or signed first-edition paperback.

Check it out, and spread the word!

Review My Books

If you’ve enjoyed any of my books, please leave a review. It makes more of a difference than you might imagine. One of the biggest things you can do to support me as a writer (right after “Buying my books” and “Recommending them to your friends”) is leaving a review at Amazon.com.

Find more stories to love

Some of you have mentioned how desperate you are for new reading material. Maybe that’s just a cynical bid for extra consideration when it comes to getting an Advance Reading Copy of The Dragonprince’s Heir, but I’m going to take those comments at face value and offer you the recommendations I can:

More Stories from the World of the FirstKing

I have two other short stories related (if obliquely) to the cataclysmic dragonswarms that underpin the Dragonprince Trilogy.

I also have another short story from the same universe, focusing on a different era altogether (and a whole new magic system). Grab a copy of the first issue of our anthology, A Consortium of Worlds, and look for “The Bloodshield Betrayal.”

Superhero Fantasy from the World of Auric

If you’ve already read all the dragonswarm stuff, I’ve got another whole universe of fantasy to offer. The World of Auric features a brand new genre, “superhero fantasy,” where larger-than-life adventurers battle sinister supervillains in a setting that is pure, epic fantasy.

If those two short stories seem like a cruel tease, you’ll be glad to know I’ve got a feature-length novel under development (Oberon’s Dreams), and we’ve specced out at least three epic trilogies featuring these heroes.

Ghost Targets

And if you’re willing to venture outside the realms of epic fantasy, I’ve got a whole trove of other stories to share with you. The Ghost Targets series features a near future dominated by total universal surveillance…and the FBI team dedicated to tracking down those people rich or powerful enough to escape the attention of the database archive.

That series will eventually run to 25 books, but those four should be enough to keep you busy until The Dragonprince’s Heir comes out. I’m awfully proud of them.

Other Consortium Authors

If you’ve already read everything I have to offer, you can still discover other up-and-coming stars by checking out any of the other writers published through Consortium Books.

The easiest (and cheapest) way to do that is to pick up an issue of our short story anthology, where you’ll find stories from a half a dozen different writers for just $2.99.

Remnant (A Dragonswarm Short Story)

Some of you may have already seen it in A Consortium of Worlds, #2, but I’ve just released a new dragonswarm short story. Set thousands of years before the events of the Dragonprince Trilogy, “Remnant” tells the story of what happened last time the dragons woke.

You can pick up a copy of the short story for $0.99, or get it with a handful of others for just $2.99 in the anthology. It’s a good deal either way.

But you don’t have to take my word for it. Here’s a taste of the story:

Rinuld stood deep in the afternoon shadows, nearly invisible among the summer-scorched pines, and thought, What a waste of a perfectly good virgin. He chewed a short strip of bark, more for distraction than for the deadening effect. Otherwise he didn’t move. He made no sound. He only watched.

She was dressed in rags, of course. No sense sending her to die in clothes that still had another year’s wear in ‘em. They hadn’t skimped on the chains, though. Those were iron links solid enough to restrain a raging bear, binding a girl who couldn’t have seen more than seventeen summers. The cuffs on her wrists and the collar at her neck were so heavy they’d long since dragged her to her knees. She slumped against the scarred cliff face, trembling from time to time, but she made no effort to escape.

The cliff face troubled him. It was dead center on the east wall of the valley, situated to catch the dying sunset rays. There was a section of it scraped bare. Six paces tall and almost exactly as wide, flat and square as a townhouse wall. Man-made. It had been smooth, too. Once. Now it was scarred with long, fierce gouges–living granite torn like paper by razor-sharp talons. Soft gray stone stained black with soot and blood.

And anchors made of steel. Not bronze, not cold-wrought iron, but honest steel. A fortune in perfect steel. Five posts of it, driven deep into the stone, and from those anchors ran five iron chains to bind the skinny, pale girl.

Rinuld knew what came next. It would happen at sunset. Teeth like sickle blades would shear through her wrist-thick bonds of iron. A stomach like a furnace would consume the heavy shackles and the tender flesh alike. A pretty little girl would die, and some stupid primitive tribesmen down on the hillside would think themselves safer for another week. Another month. They couldn’t hope for a season.

And perhaps they would be. Perhaps the beast would overlook the tribe that had left the girl in chains. The monsters certainly loved treasures, and there was not much rarer now, not much more precious than human lives.

He’d seen the offer made before, but no one had survived. Not long. He’d met a thousand tribes in a hundred different lands. He’d seen villages and cavehomes. He’d met heathens and hunters and cowards who hid. It didn’t really seem to make much difference. He’d seen every effort to survive, every deal man had made with the harbingers of cataclysm, and none of it had worked.

The Twin Empires had not survived against the beasts. All the Warlord’s armies had barely held the swarm at bay. What hope was there for a dozen dirty tribesmen with nothing more to throw against them than a chained-up, beaten-down little girl?

If you’re wondering what happens next, I’ll give you a hint: Rinuld decides against his better judgment to rescue her. It’s gloriously brutal.