Prompt for April 8, 2014 – Day 98

Two more days until Day 100!  Where have all the days gone?

Another opening line prompt for you today, again something sourced in my own work.  One of the UNSETC Files books ends with a phone call–and sparks a whole new story in and of itself.

See what you can do with this opening line.

Prompt Type: Opening Line

Prompt: “I have news about your brother.”

Got an idea for a prompt?  Email me at emklitzke (at) gmail (dot) com.

Updated cover reveal for The Measure of Dreams

I’m almost finished with the main draft of the next UNSETIC Files book, The Measure of Dreams, which tells the story of how AJ McConaway and Kate Berkshire meet and begin working together.  AJ and Kate are number one and two in the trifecta of heroines that keep Tim McConaway (Bering Songs and Silence) from going completely off the deep end–or worse, somehow returning to the kidnappers who twisted him into their own image.  Kate’s already met the third of their trio at the time of The Measure of Dreams, but AJ hasn’t and won’t until she gets a phone call from one Lieutenant Brigid O’Connell at the end of Bering Songs and Silence.

I anticipate releasing The Measure of Dreams sometime this spring (oh god, did I just set a deadline for myself?  I think I did!) and with this anticipated release I’d been looking at the cover I’d originally designed.

I decided I didn’t like it and needed something better.

So I made something better and here it is!  I hope you all like it as much as I do.

The Measure of DreamsStay tuned for more tie-ins to The Measure of Dreams coming soon (including stats so you can use AJ McConaway in your modern or near future d20 games) as well as a firm release date for the E-book.

Snippet Sunday – UNSETIC Files: The Measure of Dreams (WIP)

The snip below is from the UNSETIC File The Measure of Dreams–the tale of Alisa McConaway and Kate Berkshire and their hunt for the two men they love.

The Measure of DreamsWhat would you do if someone offered to give you the most important men in your life back after you’d lost them?

AJ McConaway lost her brother and her fiancée during Operation: Iraqi Freedom on the same day within hours of each other.  Ten months later, she learns everything she thought she knew about their disappearance was wrong.

Kate Berkshire knew that something strange had happened back in June of ’07 when her lover and his best friend vanished from the cockpits of their planes.  She knows because she found one of the downed craft with no trace of its pilot, ejected or otherwise.  When an old friend offers her the opportunity to bring them home again, she jumps at the chance without realizing the magnitude of her choice.

Now, both women have to decide if they’re willing to brave the pathways between worlds.  Someone–or something–that walks those pathways has taken Mat O’Brien and Tim McConaway from them.  How far are they willing to go to bring them home again?

Is it worth the world?

Snippet below the break.

Continue reading “Snippet Sunday – UNSETIC Files: The Measure of Dreams (WIP)”

Snippet Sunday – UNSETIC Files: Between Fang and Claw

This week’s snip is from one of the UNSETIC Files novellas currently available as ebooks.

UNSETIC Between Fang and ClawIt all starts with a secret–-one that former Ambassador Richard McCullough refuses to reveal to his eldest son.  Sometimes, even secrets kept for the best of reasons lead to unintended consequences…

James McCullough returns to England for the first time since joining the FBI, a last-minute speaker added to the roll for a conference at King’s College.  When he runs into old flame Bryn Knight outside of Heathrow, plans for a quiet, low-key trip are quickly dashed.  Lunch at a local pub leads to his recruitment into a shadow organization dedicated to protecting the world from all the things humanity isn’t quite equipped to understand yet, from vampires and psychics to ghosts and aliens and everything in between.

There’s a war brewing in London. Bryn and her parents are on the front lines and James is right there with them–-but is it a fight he can hope to survive?

Snippet below the break.

Continue reading “Snippet Sunday – UNSETIC Files: Between Fang and Claw

UNSETIC: My personal experiment in episodic fiction

The idea for the UNSETIC Files has been rattling around in my brain for a very, very long time–nearly as long as I’ve been writing.  Part of what stopped me from writing stories about the organization and the men and women in it was largely the fact that I didn’t think that most of their stories would rate book-length (80,000+ words) manuscripts.  I felt that many of the tales would be done a disservice by adding additional “fluff” to inflate the word counts.  The advent of e-publishing and the rise in popularity and acceptability of novella-length fiction (short novels and long short stories, defined by a recent issue of The Writer as works of 15,000-80,000 words [see “Ask the Writer” in the February 2013 issue]) have given me more freedom to explore the characters, their stories, and their world.

The world of the UNSETIC Files is a braided universe, and by that I mean that there are common threads (characters and occasionally organizations) that bind the universe together.  It overlaps with the Lost Angels universe (especially in the person of James McCullough initially and later characters like Ridley Thys and a few others), but within its own fabric has several characters that tie the stories together.  As more stories are added to the universe, this will become increasingly clear.

As of this writing, I’m not sure how successful my little experiment will be–Bering Songs and Silence and Between Fang and Claw have only been out for about a month or so and there have been no reviews thus far, so it’s hard to say how well things are going or how clear the connections are.  I’m looking forward to the day when people begin to see the connections and talk about them–but that day’s not here yet.

Someday, though, I hope they will.  In the meantime, I’m going to continue this little experiment in episodic fiction and hope that the gamble pays off in the long run.

Goals status check – Mid-January

As I sit here watching Once Upon a Time (and cheering on Belle as she embarks on a “solo” adventure back in fairy-tale land, apparently with Mulan as suspected), I’ve decided to punch up an update on the goals I announced a couple weeks back.

  • When All’s Said and Done completed by mid-year, published by end of year ** Marginally on track. 
  • Legacies of the Lost Earth: The Last Colony edited and published by end of February ** Haven’t touched this editing yet.
  • Epsilon: Redeemer completed by mid-year, published by end of year  ** Marginally on track.
  • UNSETIC Files: In the Beginning – at least two collection stories completed by end of January and published as ebooks by end of March  ** Already published the first of this pair; second is in the hands of someone who gets to double-check some specific dialogue for me before I can do final edits.
  • Awakenings:  War Drums available as ebook and in print by end of June.  ** This requires me to reach the end of the story I’m trying to tell with War Drums first.  We’ll see what happens.

Stay tuned for more updates….

Preview: UNSETIC Files: Bering Songs and Silence

UNSETIC Bering Songs and SilenceI’m thrilled to announce that Bering Songs and Silence is now available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords as an ebook!

Here’s a taste of what’s in store when you step into Naval officer Brigid O’Connell’s head and hear her story about her first mission with UNSETIC…

Click below the cut to catch a preview from the first chapter of Bering Songs and Silence, the story of Brigid O’Connell and Timothy McConaway’s first mission together…

Continue reading “Preview: UNSETIC Files: Bering Songs and Silence