‘The Golem Upstairs’ Cover Art and Blurb and Other Things

Okay, first thing’s first. Behold the ongoing weirdness of my Sheridan Diggins series covers. Lucky me, the artist responsible for these trippy images actually has a four or five-image series that works perfectly for my books. I already know what to get for the third and fourth installments. At any rate, weird cover art is weird (and I love it), and here’s the blurb:

Book 2 of the Cecilian Blue-Collar Chronicles

Sheridan Diggins hasn’t had much luck in love. In fact, he hasn’t had much luck in anything, period. So when the prince of the underworld takes a sudden fancy to him, the future should look promising.

Or shouldn’t it?

Unfortunately, dating the youngest prince of the dead comes with a few complications. Yuli Soulweaver’s presence “upstairs” stirs up long-dormant magic, which adds to the baffling day-to-day experiences of Cecilia’s colonists. There’s also the danger of aliens and colonists discovering the existence of a magical universe, which could blow the lid wide open between two worlds that aren’t meant to come together.

The worst part, of course, is the fact that someone from Yuli’s world appears to have discovered the lovers’ dirty little secret and has taken the step of sending a mindless monster to do away with Sheridan.

Suddenly, paying the bills takes a backseat to Sheridan’s bizarre love life.

If you’re expecting the series to be hard sci-fi, I’ve already warned everyone that this isn’t. It’s more like a comic take of the fish-out-of-water trope, and it’s more about non-advanced humans making things work out in a world totally different from theirs. There’s quite a bit of winking and nudging in the stories, and it’s been fun working the element of fantasy / magic into an environment that’s supposed to be all science. Complications are ramping up in the second book, and things get crazier and crazier as the series goes.

I’ve already updated my Science Fiction page with the necessary info.

And Primavera got reviewed over at TNA, and it’s a great one: “It is sensual and romantic, fantastical yet fully grounded in the reality of the expression of its message—that forgiveness and acceptance can heal, that faith in something that can’t be explained can be a leap well worth taking.”

MAY SALE REMINDER: And as a reminder, Primavera is on sale over at Smashwords. Use the coupon code XB79L to get 30% off. The sale will be going on through May.

Speaking of self-published books, I was forced to set the second one aside, and I hope to pick up where I left off next month. I’ve pretty much resigned myself to the fact that it’s not going to be done before the end of June, but I’ve always been kind of a hard-ass on myself as far as work goes, which probably accounts for the RL update I’m going to share in a bit.

At any rate, I’m still aiming to have two more self-published novellas out later this year, depending on my schedule and – yeah, unfortunately – my health.

Finally, speaking of health…

Ain’t nothing like having suspicions confirmed. I’ve been feeling really worn out for a while now, not counting the previous years of being burned out on writing following the initial heady rush of publication. I’m talking about maybe the last couple of years in this case. Yesterday I went to see a new doctor who pretty much confirmed what I thought I had: adrenal fatigue. Now the medical community can’t really agree on whether or not this condition exists, but it’s good to cover as many bases as possible. I’m set to do a saliva test to check cortisol levels at different times of the day to make sure things are what we think they are. And I’m likely to have a blood panel done, too, to rule out other possibilities.

Beyond the never-ending feeling of zero gas in the tank, I’m fine otherwise. My mood’s affected only if I haven’t gotten enough sleep or if I’m being bombarded with more stressors than I can handle. I can still go out for a bike ride for fitness, but my performance isn’t up to par. My appetite’s good, feeling worn down hasn’t crippled my ability to enjoy movies or hikes or books or my home life. So here’s to some much-needed help in that department after I do the saliva test.

Now Available: Ansel of Pryor House

And the day has come. :) My fantasy YA novella is now available in e-book format over at JMS Books, and it’s up for a new release discount of 20% for a week only through the publisher’s bookstore. You know the drill.

Here’s the blurb:

Fifteen-year-old Ansel Tunnicliffe has lived a harsh life. Abandoned by his mother and his siblings to a drunk and abusive father, Ansel knows nothing more than hunger, fear, pain, and loneliness.

One evening, a wealthy stranger appears, challenges Mr. Tunnicliffe to a game of cards, and easily wins. The prize? Ansel. The terrified boy is whisked away to a remote and mysterious house, whose stern and aristocratic mistress takes Ansel in for a purpose that remains elusive to him.

Little by little, however, Ansel discovers additional secrets in every magical room of Pryor House — secrets that are somehow linked to him and Miss Peveler’s strange interest in his welfare. One of those secrets also turns out to be a young boy who haunts Ansel’s lonely hours and who may very well hold the key to Ansel’s future and the shadowy history of Pryor House.

I’ll be doing an e-book giveaway over at The Novel Approach on the 16th (Saturday), so keep an eye out for it.

Please note this book is only available in e-book format; however, it’s one of two YA novellas I’ll be releasing this year, and it’ll be paired up with the second one down the line into a two-novella print anthology. I’ve noted in a past post that they’ll be thematically similar, focusing on young outsiders who learn to embrace their humanity and allow others to love them. This novella is also a kind of a return to my roots, so to speak, and it falls along the lines of Renfred’s Masquerade and the stories in The Book of Lost Princes.

Thanks again, everyone, for your support, and I hope you enjoy the book!

ADDENDUM: And as a reminder, Primavera, my self-published gay adult novella, is on sale over at Smashwords. Use the coupon code XB79L to get 30% off. The sale will be going on through May.