Friday, December 6, 2013

New cover for The Test

I just uploaded a new cover for The Test. I think is much better, let's see how it fares.

Here it is:

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

My mind is boiling with new ideas

I have been on vacations for a couple of weeks and at first I was hopping to get some writing done, but as it turned out, I wrote very little. However, I did get a surge of ideas for new books and series. I guess the change from routine and work, refreshed my mind. So as you can see in the bar at the left of the blog, I've put the more pressing and better fleshed ideas I have, which will probably be the firsts to be written (don't take my word on this). My intention is to prioritize all my projects according to their position in that left bar, the top ones would be the ones with the most priority and the ones at the bottom, the less priority. Sometimes (many times) i wish I had 8 extra hours each day...

Sunday, September 8, 2013

A sequel on Mars

As I have been told by several readers that they would like to know what happens after the short story "The Forgotten War" ends, I have decided that I'm going to write a sequel to it. I'm not sure about the length, but it's not going to be a short story. I'll keep you posted.

Monday, September 2, 2013

The Fogotten War

Tomorrow you will be able to get this sci fi short story for free in Amazon. It will be on sale for three days. Don't miss this great oportunity.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The Forgotten War on sale from Sep 3 to Sep 5

Starting September 3rd until September 5th The Forgotten War will be free for download at Amazon.
Don't pass on this great opportunity and get your copy.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Faust 2.0 - Michael Brookes

This is the first book in the series Mitchell & Morton by Michael Brookes. The story is based on a really interesting premise, that is realistically portrayed by the author.
The characters are interesting and well defined. Maybe the main character, Sarah, in a few instances falls in Hollywood stereotypes; however they don't stand out breaking the flow of the book. It is the first book, so hopefully we will get to know Sarah better on the next installment and the mysterious Morton.
The secondary characters are interesting as well, which is always a welcome detail (that doesn't happen that often in modern literature, actually).
The nemesis in the story is great. I really liked and looked forward reading more chapters about her/it.
All in all, it's a fast paced thriller, that I thoroughly enjoyed.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

The Forgotten War available in Amazon!


My new short story is available in Amazon finally.

The Forgotten War - A short story.
Greg, a soldier in a Martian colonial force, fights in a red-dry dessert as menacing as the enemy. Human hubris has enabled us to finally escape the confines of Mother Earth, but our politics and nationalism have tagged along for the ride. Greg’s only wish – to return home – is fading along with his connection to home and to his sense of purpose.

Friday, August 16, 2013

The Forgotten War

I just hit the publish button for this short story. It will soon be available in Amazon.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The Forever Gate (Part One) - Isaac Hooke

I couldn't stop reading until I reached the end, and even then, wanted more (as this is just the first part of a series).
It's a mix of genres, in a strange world I haven't seen the likes of before in fiction.
But it's just the introduction, so you will want to read more, if you give it a try.
I highly recommend it, if you are into fantasy/science fiction genres.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

How and Why readers buy books has made some graphs answering these questions based on the data collected on a survey conducted by ebookfairies.

For those of us who self publish, it's really interesting to know why a potential reader buys a book and how does he/she find it.

Here you have the charts:

And here are my personal conclusions based on these graphs:

-Your books must be in Amazon.
-One in every three readers don't pay attention to the publisher (we indies can be happy for this).
-Authors must have a Facebook account and an Author Website.
-Barely one fifth of readers are very influenced by reviews (so there is no need to beg for reviews).
-Half of the readers will wait to buy a book if it has low star rating (it's time to beg for star ratings, then).
-One third of readers have been introduced to new authors by freebies at least 20 times! (keep the freebies coming)
-More than three quarters of readers will try the author again if they liked the freebie (ditto to my previous suggestion about freebies).
-For the vast majority of readers, The New York Times Bestselling List, is of no importance (I guess, in spite of this, we indies still would like to be in it, right?).

Most of these conclusions give me hope. It appears that readers are not so narrow-minded as some would like to make us think.

Thank God for the freedom and opportunities that the Internet grants us.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Great post on Rewriting

Here you can find a great post in "The Cult of Me" blog, by guest writer Ruth Francisco, about rewriting your first draft. It is full of tips and tricks, great for those who struggle at the prospect of having to revise/rewrite their first draft.

I have already bookmarked it for later use when the time comes to rewrite one of my manuscripts.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Prince of Thorns - Mark Lawrence

This is the first novel of the trilogy "Broken Empire", and if I'm not wrong, the first publish novel by Mark Lawrence.
It's the coming of age story of a runaway prince that bands with a group of thieves and killers.
The book is dark and cynic. The protagonist is just a boy but speaks like a weathered and mirthless old man.   His little regard for life is only exceeded by his fondness of violence, and his limited self control.
I, personally, had a hard time emphasizing with the protagonist, being pulled more toward those around him; something not easy when the book is written in first person, and everything is coming out of the protagonist's mind. But, the character is interesting, and I found myself hating him, yet wanting to find out why he behaved in such a why.
The other factor that kept me interested was the world itself. In fantasy literature, the world can be one more character, so this is not new, but this world has some very interesting secrets. But I will not spoil them for you.
All in all, this book was enjoyable, but not great. However, I have seen that reviews for the next book in the trilogy agree in qualifying it as much better than the first. So I'm willing to give it a chance and find out if it's true. If not, it was still entertaining, so there is no loss there; but I always have my hopes up for a good novel.

Kindle Worlds Open for Submission

Kindle Worlds is open for submission. There are 12 worlds for which you can write fan fiction. These are: "The Foreword Saga", "Gossip Girl", "Little Pretty Liars", "Vampire Diaries", "Bloodshot", "X-O Manowar", "Archer & Armstrong", "Harbinger", "Shadowman", "Wayward Pines", "Silo Saga", and "John Rain".
Many more than were announced at first.
I personally am not inclined to write fan fiction at the moment (never say never), but I have nothing against it. In fact, I believe that it's a great idea and will enrich the literature world. It will give readers what they want and it will pay writers for their work.
Can't wait to see how it develops in time.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Half of the first draft done!!!

Finally I've passed the half of the first draft.
This is the hardest part for a writer. Where you come up with countless ideas for new novels. But I must be strong and keep going so I pass this lump in the path. Once I get nearer to the end, it will be easier to continue as I see the end closer.
Later I'll have the arduous job of revising and editing the manuscript; but I best not think about that just yet and concentrate in reaching the end of the draft as soon as possible.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

My 2 cents

It seems that there are many voices in the traditional publishing establishment ranting against self published books, and in spite of my little experience in the field -I only just published a couple of short stories and I'm still working on my first novel- I want to give my two cents in the matter.
I believe that these rants are but a tantrum of someone with their livelihood threatened.
Traditional publishers are seeing how the indi industry is coping more and more of the market and they are seeing how their percentage of the sales are being reduced, so instead of adapting to the changing times, they decide to scream and whine.
In my humble opinion, what they should be doing is searching for ways to attract more of us writers to their ways. And how can they do this? It's actually quite easy. They just need to open the possibilities for writers. Increase the percentage of royalties, make better contacts, change their distribution tactics, etc.
Instead of defending their old ways they should embrace the new standards. It's the only way they will survive. Otherwise they will die a long and painful death.
I am no seer, but it is quite obvious that self published writers are going to increase and continue to cope more and more of the market. Soon someone will think of a way of distributing indi books to libraries and books stores and that will be the mortal blow to traditional publishers.
I, personally, am not against them. I respect them and would not mind to be a hybrid writer, that pursues both paths. But I am not going to loose a year or more of my life, trying to get some publishers or agents to read my manuscript, let alone publish it. This industry moves along really fast and loosing so much time, is not an option.
Before, you had no other way, so you had to do it, and loose that time. Now, it is not necesary, so why bother with trad if you can almost instantly publish and see royalties trickle into your bank account?
And let it be clear that I do not believe that indi publishing is the fast track to fame and fortune; fame and fortune come with good quality writing and readers interested in what you have to say. It has nothing to do with the way you reach readers. So what I defend is the freedom of a writer to put out his work effortlessly and the right of the reader to have a wide variety from which to choose.
It trad publishers don't change, they will disappear, and no one will miss them at all. It's a shame, but life isn't fair.
This reminds me of other revolutions in other industries were automation replaced hand made manufacturing  People are usually scared of change, but whoever wants to survive, needs to adapt. And that is a fact.

Friday, June 14, 2013

14 - Peter Clines

This is a book I have been wanting to read for some time. And when I finally got to reading it, I was glad I had.
Peter Clines' style is simple, clean, and direct. He describes the characters with their actions and dialogs, and looses no time on flourishes of language. It really reminded me of a movie or a play, so heavy was the text with dialog. And this is not a bad thing, depending on the plot and rhythm of the story, it fits really well.
The characters could have had more layers to them, but they are not shallow.
The story is very good plotted, and it is obvious that he spend quite some time preparing all the small details.
This book is full of mysteries; each new one taking the reader a little deeper into the strange world that Mr. Clines has constructed. A strange world that reminiscence of Lovecraft and his unworldly mysteries.
A great read that will not pass unremembered to the fans of mystery and horror.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Last Argument of Kings - Book Three of the First Law Series

What a great trilogy. I guess that sums it up. For those that like fantasy, but oriented for a more mature audience; which I suppose is an ever growing group thanks to Game of Thrones and George RR Martin.

The third book in the trilogy performs even better than the two previous ones. Here is where all the plot arcs come to an end. And it's not a Hollywood style end at that, its as dark and grim as the rest of the books.

The plot moves along taking us to the climax of the book, to then tie up all the lose ends in the last quarter. Joe Abercrombie does a good job at this, too. He forgets no one, and makes sure that the reader knows what the fate of all the important characters is.

Abrupt ends are sometimes cool, and serve a purpose (namely, leave the reader with a certain emotion); but when you find a lot of characters as unforgettable as these, you really want to know what happens with them once the climax ends and everything returns to "normal".

I really enjoyed reading The First Law trilogy and, in fact, I am looking forward to reading the other standalone novels Abercrombie has written in the same universe.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Kindle Worlds

Amazon has announced their new project: "Kindle Worlds". A platform for fan fiction where authors (new and old) will be able to write fan fiction and earn money. Amazon has secured licences for three fiction worlds at the moment: Gossip Girl, Vampire Diaries, and Little pretty liars.

This is a really interesting idea. It will give the opportunity for many fans to publish their fan fiction stories and earn some money. And it will give readers the opportunity to expand on the universes that they love. Haven't you ever felt like you can't get enough of some fictional world (i.e. Star Wars, Star Treck, Middle Earth, Westeros, Marvel Univers, DC Univers, etc.). I have, in more than one occasion.

I personally, will not be writing any fan fiction (for now; you can never say never). But I would very much enjoy reading fan fiction of my favorite fictional Universes.

So let us hope that Amazon secures more licences, and the options increase.

I will be watching the developments closely.

Thursday, May 16, 2013


I've just opened shop on Shelfari. I had my Goodreads account for some time, but didn't know of the existence of this other similar web. I joined and so I have one more venue to let my books be known to the public.

If you are a member of Shelfari, or Goodreads for that matter, don't hesitate to add me as a friend.

Before they are hanged - Book two of the First Law Series

The second book in this trilogy is even better than the first. Now that the characters were introduced in the previous book, in this book we get to know them better and love/despise them. We also can see how they start growing, their decisions influenced by these changes. In the first book there was one character who I didn't like too much, I saw it as a bit boring and not well connected with the rest of the plot. But in the second book I changed my opinion and looked forward for reading a chapter that featured this character, as the connection was well done -with the main plot- and I got to appreciate it.

Joe Abercrombie's mastery of dialog and action scenes is amazing. However his characterizations are his best asset. In each chapter we follow a character, and hear his thoughts and feel his emotions. He manages to do this in a seamless and beautiful way.

Several of the characters take on a long trip to the edge of the world, others set out to fight a war in the north. But I don't want to spoil the fun for those who might pick the book up and read it.

All in all, when I finished reading, I could not wait to get the third and last book of the trilogy and find out how it ends, and mostly, what is the doom of those imaginary friends I've gotten to love and hate so much: Logen, Glockta, Jazele, Bayaz, Coronel West, etc.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

The Blade Itself - The First Law Book One

At first I was a bit lost (as in most fantasy books you can find). Tolkien didn't write it so there are no endless description of the lands and the people (I love Tolkien, mind you). Joe Abercrombie jumps right into the action.
Soon I got used to the new setting and dove into the story with my eyes closed.
This is the first book of a trilogy, so it does not end. Some might not like this, but I rather enjoy trilogies and series. If the characters hook me, I'm always eager to read more about them.
The characters are great, in fact, it's the best part of the trilogy. They are so different, odd, and non-stereotyped. There is no good or bad characters; each has its good parts and its bad parts. In that sense its much more realistic than many fantasy books around.
Another thing that I really enjoyed was the fact that it's for adults. Most of the fantasy written now (or in the past) is for young adults. This trilogy aint.
So if you like fantasy but prefer a more adult tone on the books you read, this is the trilogy for you.
In this first book we are introduced into the main characters: Glockta, a cynical crippled that tortures people; Logen, a warrior trying to change his life, haunted by his past; Jazele, a self-centered, vehement, stuckup, rich-boy, aristocrat; and several others just as peculiar as these.
There are several plot threads (another thing I love about a book), that cross in several occasions. But it's not a complicated plot, so regardless of how many threads the story follows, you won't get lost. As I said before, the best thing about these books are the characters, and how they confront the situations that come upon them.

A great read, really recomendable.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Sneak Peek

Here you have a sneak peek of my as yet untitled novel I'm writing at the moment. This excerpt belongs to the first chapter. Have in mind that it's a first draft.

He proceeded due east, toward the villa. It was visible from the road but hidden to Keller’s gaze by a low hill covered with pines and sycamores. As he topped the hill, below he could see a wide plain where the villa was located and beyond, the path that snaked to Kalycom Road, flanked by tall elms. Keller reined the horse to a stop and squinted his eyes. A carriage was moving down the path, toward the villa, pulled by a couple of white steeds. Before the vehicle, a detachment of six soldiers on horseback, rode in double file; the front-right one carrying a pole with the symbol of the Senate on the top, a golden olive tree. This could only mean that a senator traveled in the carriage. Keller’s lips curved momentarily, the expression vanishing as quickly as it had emerged.
He could only think of two senators who would travel south to his villa, instead of summoning him with a messenger; Senator Illiard Elanor and Senator Clemen Jaress. However, if it were young Clemen, he would have come with a much smaller escort, maybe even without any. He was a bold young senator who was still trying to prove himself before the rest of Senate. So it had to be good old Illiard.
Keller heeled the horse to meet the visitors. He reached the paved path in a moment and met with the garrison halfway to the villa. The soldiers reined their mounts and the carriage driver followed suit.
“Gain way, old man!” bellowed the officer in charge of the detachment. It was a young sergeant who was but a bit older than Keller’s own daughter. By the looks of him, he was given the rank for his noble blood, but looked greatly inexperienced.
Keller glared at him, his brow frowned deeply, his eyes flashing with fury.
“I said Ga—“ the officer was unable to finish the sentence. Keller moved his horse quickly and unsheathed his short sword, putting the cold sharp point in the officer’s throat.
The young soldier gasped and turned pale as a corpse.
The man beside him, the one carrying the Senate symbol, was a weathered mid-aged soldier; he watched the scene with some satisfaction, in silence. The rest of the escort was motionless as well. Keller felt sad, what good was an officer who’s soldiers did not respect him, so much as to stand still when a man threatens his life.
“Sergeant, he is Lord Keller Argoth; sir”, explained the standard bearer.
“That I am”, proclaimed Keller, pulling back his sword and sheathing the weapon in a quick nimble movement.
“Ah— ah—“, stuttered the officer.
The soldier beside him snorted in contempt. Keller trained his glare on him reproachfully. This officer might be unworthy of the respect of his soldiers, but it was no excuse for their behavior.
“I should have you all lashed. What kind of training have you had?”, questioned Keller to all, but glaring at the standard bearer. “Were you not told that you must defend your officer? Or are you so witless as to not know that?”
No one spoke, their expressions hard, their eyes looking forward, avoiding his glare.
“It’s unfortunate that you are not under my command. I believe that I could still make real legionaries out of the lot of you”, he spoke, more to himself than to them.
A bold and wrinkled head poked out through a window in the carriage. When he saw Keller, he smiled chuckling. “Greetings, Lord Keller”, he waved a small pale hand full of long bony fingers.
Keller turned his head and gazed at the old Senator. His expression remained unchanged.
“You should make sure that your escort is qualified. This lot would shit in their paints if confronted with a real danger”, he made the last remark glaring at the officer in contempt.
“Forgive me, Lord Keller”, the young sergeant muttered dropping his gaze to his hands.
Keller eyed him a last time, and then moved his steed to stand beside the carriage window. He held Illiard’s hand firmly, his expression softer, yet not smiling. Keller seldom smiled.
“It’s good to see you”, he said. “Shall I meet you at the villa?”
“Very well”, answered Illiard returning to the shadows inside the carriage.
Keller moved the horse up to the officer again, and nodding at the structure down the path ordered, “Move along”.
“Yes, my lord.”
Keller pressed his heels sharply and his steed jumped into a canter, leaving the party behind.

The Test - A short story

I've just published a new short story. It is called "The Test" and the blurb is as follows:

In the near future, scientists develop a method to discriminate people who will possibly develop pathological behavior and become killers, rapists, etc. Is this a blessing from the heavens, to rid society of unwanted individuals, or is it a curse?

The Test

The cover is in fact provisional. It doesn't convince me so I'm working on a new one to change it.

Massive book giveaway!!!

Here is the link:

Contest goes from May 10-May 15, 11:59pm EST

Good luck.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Halfway home - Hugh Howey

This was a great book. Some have qualified it as young adult fiction; maybe the fact that the characters are all teenagers draws that conclusion, but I don't quite agree. The book has many adult themes like: "What does real freedom mean", "the struggle for power", "strength comes from unity", "how most people will follow an idea or person like sheep", "can we change our destiny, our position in life; and should we", etc. There is a theme that is usually used in young-adult fiction; "rebellion against the powers that be".
I think that this book has more layers than most people have noticed.
But, enough of that and lets talk about what a page-turner this book is. I bought it and a couple of days later I have already finished it. It's not a long book, but being as busy as I usually am, it is something unusual to finish so quickly a novel. But the truth is I couldn't stop reading; had to find out what happened next.
I think that the best books are does that have this effect on you, those that you must keep reading until you reach the end.
When I finished, I smoked a cigarette in the balcony, musing over the story, the characters, everything.
Summing up, it's a great book and I recommend it.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

The First Law Series

I'm about to finish the second book in the First Law series written by Joe Abercrombie. I highly recommend it to anyone who likes adult fantasy.
The story is good and interesting but the best thing about the novels are the characters. They are not your typical paladins and sorcerers. All have a good side and a bad side; some mostly try to do the right thing, others not so much.
The interactions between the main characters are great, and being so different give way to interesting -and sometimes outright comical- situations.
Adding to the above, Abercrombie's mastery of English is delightful.

The Blade Itself - The First Law: Book One

Friday, April 12, 2013

Self-publishing Manual

I stumbled upon a great self-publishing manual in Hugh Howey's blog. It was published in the Kindle Boards forums by user kayakruthie and it hold a ton of tips and tricks for newbies and not so newbies. I highly recommend it to anyone thinking on self-publishing or who has already done so but is still new in this world.

The link is as follows:,42600.0.html

I hope it helps you as it has helped me.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Monday, February 11, 2013

Now on Smashwords

After ending my enrollment in KDP at Amazon, now I can publish in other sites the short story "The Decision". I've just finished uploading it on to Smashwords and it's on review at the moment. Soon it will be available in Barns & Noble, Apple Book store, Kobo, Sony, etc.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Working on the Cover of Children of Space

I'm having some trouble with this cover. I had some ideas but they are not coming out as good as I thought. However, I haven't finished revising it, so I yet have some time to get the cover right.
I've been trying some 3D rendering for the image, instead of drawing it. I have gone that path because the design I had in mind had scifi elements with reflections and refractions, something quite hard to imitate in a hand drawing.
Apart from those things, I've been writing some more of my Untitled Book. I still haven't found a good title for it. It's going pretty good. I have a good writing pace. I still have a long way to go in that one (I'm not even at the half of it), but I'm getting there.