Rob’s Update: FantaSci

Week 12 of 2023

Greetings all

Bonds of Valor
Bonds of Valor

I’m at FantaSci! Which is why I’m a day lat one getting this out.

Bonds of Valor is live. Get it here: amazon.com/dp/B0BZ7BFXN9. 14 great stories of valor with bonds of faith, hope, love, and more.

Todd McCaffrey, Jody Lynn Nye, Glen Cook, D.J. Butler, and Sarah Hoyt lead Team And More into the breach.

Stay tuned next week for next year’s anthology theme. Or if you can’t wait, I talk about it in the CKP YouTube release party we did on Tuesday.

That link is here: youtube.com/watch?v=r4M0qkZWU4s. I had a great time talking with nearly all of the authors.

I had a great time at Planet Comicon. I sold well, and was especially pleased to see how well Postcards from Mars sold. The art in it is really fun and even people who don’t read much thought it was cool.

Because I’ve either been at a con or on the road to a con nearly every day this week, not to mention a variety of mundane tasks to deal with, I had very little chance to write in Farewell, My Ugly. I had one decent writing session, so about 1500 words and I pushed through yet another rough spot, so it wasn’t completely unproductive.

One thing I should mention. I listened to Newsletter Ninja on the way out. This means there’ll be a few changes to the newsletter in the next couple of months. Part of that will mean you’ll get a few extra emails, stuff I should have built into my mailing list from the beginning. The good news is these will have some free stories and extra content.

I mention it now so you’re not surprised. I really appreciate all of you who read this, and want to make sure I’m giving you fair value for both your email address and your time.

But for now, I need to turn my time to FantaSci. Have a great week, everyone.

What I’m Listening To

Rush, Clockwork Angels. I always wear Rush shirts at cons, and this gets me in the mood to be a rock star.

Quote of the Week

Happy birthday to Steve McQueen. Here’s a quote from him that is a real challenge for many writers, but it’s something we have to power through.

“The world is as good as you are. You’ve got to learn to like yourself first.”
– Steve McQueen

Rob’s Riddles

I have a Patreon where I write Old English style riddles and provide snippets of my work. You can find it here: patreon.com/rhodri2112, along with a sample riddle.

First Line of Next Riddle:

I swirl and I swoop          Swiftly striking my prey

Latest Snippet: Chapter 4 of Farewell, My Ugly

New Mythology Works in Progress

Bonds of Valor is out! Here’s the blurb:

A private eye saves his dead friend.

The Black Company deals with something fishy.

Deathmages, space mages, and forgotten magic.

It’s all here in fourteen stories of valor, heroism, and bonds that tie folk together, for good or ill. There are bonds of love, oaths to gods, and life-long friends.

Will the old, crusty worn-out veteran find his new partner just might be something? Will the knight learn humility from those who serve him? Will Indrajit and Fix restore the path of true love?

Or will the bonds between characters break under the pressure of evil wizards, ancient enemies, or massive dragons?

Come find out.

Get it here: amazon.com/dp/B0BZ7BFXN9

Rob’s Works in Progress

  • Sowing Spring’s Wrath (3,213)
  • Farewell, My Ugly (71,525)
  • Rick Blaine (8,845)
  • The Feasting of Vengeance (3,405)

Upcoming Events

New Releases

Lots this week! Let’s start with The Last Argonaut, by Ian J. Malone. I’ve been waiting for this warball novel in the Salvage Title universe for months! Get it here: amazon.com/dp/B0BYHP4RX2/.

Then there’s Prince Renegade by Fred Hughes. This is book 5 in his excellent Prince of Britannia series. Get it here: amazon.com/dp/B0BZ79PPBN.

And, of course, Bonds of Valor, which you can get here: amazon.com/dp/B0BZ7BFXN9.

Tracked Items

Today’s Weight: 350.2

Updated Word Count: 107,716

Firehall Sagas Archives: 737 entries

Let me know if you have any suggestions on the website, this email, or cool story ideas at rob@robhowell.org. Especially let me know of suggestions you have for the Spotlight section.

Have a great week, everyone.

Rob Howell

Creator of the Firehall Sagas Universe

Rob’s Update: Planet Comicon

Week 11 of 2023

Greetings all

Wynnifred On My Shoulder
Wynnifred On My Shoulder

My supervisor was looking over my shoulder all week.

She’s not a bad boss, but man, does she have to use her claws?

In any case, it’s been a solid week here. Good progress on Farewell, My Ugly. I’m now over 70,000. I had aimed at 80,000, but I think it’s going to run to about 100,000 after all. Oh, well. I should still have a full draft at the end of April.

I also wrote another femtostory for another anthology in the vein of Postcards From Mars. This one had a steampunk theme, and Cedar Sanderson gave me a great image as inspiration.

I call them femtostories because to me, a microstory is about 1000 words. These are 50. Picostory is probably more correct, but I think femto- sounds more fun.

If you want to see the image, I will put it up on my Patreon site on Monday along with a new snippet from Farewell, My Ugly.

Bonds of Valor
Bonds of Valor

The big thing this week is the cover reveal of Bonds of Valor. J. Caleb Studios did another excellent job, as you can see by this cover.

Take note of the amazing list of authors. It’s an incredible honor to work with such masters as Todd McCaffrey, Jody Lynn Nye, and Glen Cook.

This is another Black Company story, and as I’ve mentioned before, it’s so fun to publish these as that’s one of my favorite series.

By the way, many of these authors will be joining us on CKP YouTube on Tuesday, the 21st.  The YouTube link is: https://www.youtube.com/live/r4M0qkZWU4s.

I hope you’ll join us.

I also hope a bunch of you join us for the release of Bonds of Valor at FantaSci is about a week. Where has the time gone!

Side note, Sarah’s story is my favorite story I’ve had the pleasure to edit.

With that, I better go to bed. It’s going to be a long, exhausting weekend at Planet Comicon.

I can’t wait.

What I’m Listening To

My computer hum. I was chatting with Becca Gardner, who’s a great writer and an even better arranger of publicity. She’s really helped Todd Fahnestock, who’s also staying here for the con. However, she went off to do projects and I’m enjoying the white noise.

Quote of the Week

I love William Butler Yeats. He has such a vivid way of sending emotions through the reader with his poetry.  Here’s a quote I love. every fantasy author should know.

Seriously, how good is this?

“Faeries, come take me out of this dull world,
For I would ride with you upon the wind,
Run on the top of the dishevelled tide,
And dance upon the mountains like a flame.”

– William Butler Yeats

Rob’s Riddles

I have a Patreon where I write Old English style riddles and provide snippets of my work. You can find it here: patreon.com/rhodri2112, along with a sample riddle.

First Line of Next Riddle:

I swirl and I swoop          Swiftly striking my prey

Latest Snippet: Chapter 3 of Farewell, My Ugly

New Mythology Works in Progress

Bonds of Valor comes out next Friday! Here’s the blurb:

A private eye saves his dead friend.

The Black Company deals with something fishy.

Deathmages, space mages, and forgotten magic.

It’s all here in fourteen stories of valor, heroism, and bonds that tie folk together, for good or ill. There are bonds of love, oaths to gods, and life-long friends.

Will the old, crusty worn-out veteran find his new partner just might be something? Will the knight learn humility from those who serve him? Will Indrajit and Fix restore the path of true love?

Or will the bonds between characters break under the pressure of evil wizards, ancient enemies, or massive dragons?

Come find out.

Rob’s Works in Progress

  • Sowing Spring’s Wrath (3,213)
  • Farewell, My Ugly (70,064)
  • Rick Blaine (8,845)
  • The Feasting of Vengeance (3,405)

Upcoming Events

New Releases

We have a new 4HU novel from Jason Cordova and Kevin Ikenberry entitled The Misfits. Get it here: amazon.com/dp/B0BXWJGNDG.

And The Chimera Coup, book 1 of Christopher G. Nuttall’s amazing Heirs of Cataclysm series, is now out in audiobook. Get it here: books2read.com/u/bxrG6d.

Your pre-release this week is The Last Argonaut, by Ian J. Malone. I’ve been waiting for this warball novel in the Salvage Title universe for months! Get it here: amazon.com/dp/B0BYHP4RX2/.

Tracked Items

Today’s Weight: 350.8

Updated Word Count: 106,969

Firehall Sagas Archives: 737 entries

Let me know if you have any suggestions on the website, this email, or cool story ideas at rob@robhowell.org. Especially let me know of suggestions you have for the Spotlight section.

Have a great week, everyone.

Rob Howell

Creator of the Firehall Sagas Universe

Rob’s Update: Carthago Delenda Est

Week X of 2023

Greetings all

No, that’s not a typo. It really is Week X of 2023, not just my template. Yes, I’m the guy who puts up a V and says “Five beers please.”

Ha! I slay me. And it matches this week’s quote.

Anyway. It’s been a huge week here, though you won’t see it in all the numbers. Lots of projects around here and the next couple of months are going to be something, let me tell you.

This past weekend was an SCA get together, a heraldic retreat. Yes, I’m into heraldry. I’m sure that’s shocking. We spent the week talk about charges, field divisions, ordinaries, and so much more. We also played Puns of Anarchy, which is perfect for heralds.

If you didn’t think I could get any geekier, well, there you go.

But more on that when the time comes. I did a bunch of work Farewell, My Ugly and I’ve just about pushed through a major snarl that I had to unravel. I’m pretty pleased about that. Only one more transition to go, really, and transitions are what truly slow me down.

Even with all the other stuff and the snarl, I ended up with over 5000 words written and a bunch of issues cleared up on the draft. I tend to mark things on my manuscript that I need to fix later or double check with XX. I found a bunch of those and fixed them. Go me.

I also did some editing on Where Now the Rider. My hope is to have both ready to go by the end of March, and I’m on track.

What I’m Listening To

A Marple mystery from the BBC. I love the fact that they occasionally show her reading Raymond Chandler novels.

Quote of the Week

Carthago delenda est!
– Cicero

It’s the anniversary of Rome’s victory over Carthage in the Battle of the Aegetes, which ended the first Punic War. Cato, famously, ended his speeches in the Senate with today’s quote, which means, “Carthage must be destroyed.”

It’s such a famous phrase, Wikipedia even has an article about it: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carthago_delenda_est.

Rob’s Riddles

I have a Patreon where I write Old English style riddles and provide snippets of my work. You can find it here: patreon.com/rhodri2112, along with a sample riddle.

First Line of Next Riddle (Coming March 13th):

Love have I waged                   War have I wooed

Latest Snippet: Chapter 3 of Farewell, My Ugly

New Mythology Works in Progress

Hunting the Hart is out!!! This is book 5 in the Milesian Accords by Jon R. Osborne, and here is it’s blurb:
Magic has returned to the world, but so has an ancient foe.

Erin Donnelly, descendant of Cu Chulainn and Champion of the Folk, searches for Nechtan—her lover cursed to live as a stag for a year and a day. Enlisting the aid of allies, Erin maintains a vigil, turning back hunters and predators who might harm Nechtan in the wilds of the magical otherworld.

But when Stangr Iron-skinned escapes his imprisonment in the River of Time, he has one thing on his mind—revenge on Nechtan. Stangr’s thirst for vengeance takes him from the Seelie courts of the otherworld to the windswept Great Plains.

Can Erin find Nechtan before Stangr tracks him down? Erin beat Giwargix the Dragon-Slayer, but can she defeat a jotunn-blooded Viking impervious to blades and bullets?

Rob’s Works in Progress

  • Sowing Spring’s Wrath (3,213)
  • Farewell, My Ugly (65,545)
  • Rick Blaine (8,845)
  • The Feasting of Vengeance (3,405)

Upcoming Events

New Releases

D.T. Read’s Running from the Gods, book 4 in her Seventh Shaman series, is out this week. Get it here: amazon.com/dp/B0BHCMKH2L.

Your pre-release this week is a new 4HU novel from Jason Cordova and Kevin Ikenberry entitled The Misfits. Get it here: amazon.com/dp/B0BXWJGNDG.

And The Chimera Coup, book 1 of Christopher G. Nuttall’s amazing Heirs of Cataclysm series, is now out in audiobook. Get it here: books2read.com/u/bxrG6d.

Tracked Items

Today’s Weight: 348.2

Updated Word Count: 106,104

Firehall Sagas Archives: 737 entries

Let me know if you have any suggestions on the website, this email, or cool story ideas at rob@robhowell.org. Especially let me know of suggestions you have for the Spotlight section.

Have a great week, everyone.

Rob Howell

Creator of the Firehall Sagas Universe

Rob’s Update: A Distraction for the Ages

Week 9 of 2023

Greetings all

I had a productive week going until something came up on Wednesday and I’ve gotten very little done the last couple of days.

Julieana Joy
Julieana Joy

Oh, well, you only get your first grandchild once. Everyone, meet Julieana Joy. Feel free to help me spoil her.

I focused this week in getting back into the groove with Farewell, My Ugly, and I did very well. I’m almost at 60k, which I’ve been sitting at for a while, but I went back and edited a bunch so I could get a better grip on the story.

I aim to have have that done by the end of March and I’m on schedule.

I did a bunch of prep work for Planet Comicon, which is coming up in a couple of weeks. New promo stuff, banners, cards, etc.

I did a bit of editing on Where Now the Rider. I’m making solid progress on it and I’ll have it done by the end of the month as well.

To be honest, I know I did more stuff but I’m still a bit tired from all the travel and cool stuff this week, so I’m going to cut it short this week.

What I’m Listening To

NFL Combine Coverage. Yes, I’m strange, but having it on in the background is really a good way for me to soak in who I’ll pick for pet cats in April.

Now, the big question. Do I go to the draft? At least opening night? It’s in KC this year.

Quote of the Week

Happy birthday to Dr. Seuss.

Also, I’d be a horrible clam, but I’m certainly a ham.

I am lucky to be what I am! Thank goodness I’m not just a clam, or a ham, or a dusty jar of sour gooseberry jam! I am what I am – that’s a great thing to be!
– Dr. Seuss

Rob’s Riddles

I have a Patreon where I write Old English style riddles and provide snippets of my work. You can find it here: patreon.com/rhodri2112, along with a sample riddle.

First Line of Next Riddle:

Love have I waged                   War have I wooed

Latest Snippet: Chapter 3 of Hunting the Hart.

New Mythology Works in Progress

Hunting the Hart is out!!! This is book 5 in the Milesian Accords by Jon R. Osborne, and here is it’s blurb:
Magic has returned to the world, but so has an ancient foe.

Erin Donnelly, descendant of Cu Chulainn and Champion of the Folk, searches for Nechtan—her lover cursed to live as a stag for a year and a day. Enlisting the aid of allies, Erin maintains a vigil, turning back hunters and predators who might harm Nechtan in the wilds of the magical otherworld.

But when Stangr Iron-skinned escapes his imprisonment in the River of Time, he has one thing on his mind—revenge on Nechtan. Stangr’s thirst for vengeance takes him from the Seelie courts of the otherworld to the windswept Great Plains.

Can Erin find Nechtan before Stangr tracks him down? Erin beat Giwargix the Dragon-Slayer, but can she defeat a jotunn-blooded Viking impervious to blades and bullets?

Rob’s Works in Progress

  • Sowing Spring’s Wrath (3,213)
  • Farewell, My Ugly (59,940)
  • Rick Blaine (8,845)
  • The Feasting of Vengeance (3,405)

Upcoming Events

New Releases

Jon R. Osborne’s Hunting the Hart, fifth in his excellent Milesian Accords series. The modern world and the magical world collide, with magic, technology, and mythology all swirling in a fast-paced story of heroes. Get it here: amazon.com/dp/product/1648556477.

We have book 6 from William S. Frisbee’s The Last Marines series. Get it here: amazon.com/dp/B0BWHFLXC1.

Your pre-release this week is D.T. Read’s Running from the Gods, book 4 in her Seventh Shaman series. Get it here: amazon.com/dp/B0BHCMKH2L.

Tracked Items

Today’s Weight: 344.2

Updated Word Count: 105,360

Firehall Sagas Archives: 737 entries

Let me know if you have any suggestions on the website, this email, or cool story ideas at rob@robhowell.org. Especially let me know of suggestions you have for the Spotlight section.

Have a great week, everyone.

Rob Howell

Creator of the Firehall Sagas Universe