Tag Archives: speculative fiction

Potential novels, sequels, & other scribblings

When I started writing and publishing my works, I never thought I would publish more than maybe two novels. Well, now I’m up to eight novels, and setting to write my ninth. My goal this year was to write and publish at least two novels, and I did that, with three. I also thought I’d never write sequels or a series of novels in the same universe, but I have. I’m sure some wonder if I’m going to have any sequels to some of my older novels, and I’ve been asked, but right now, I don’t know. Here’s an update on my current novels and future works.

Out of Time It took me a long time to get this novel right, but I finally did. Anyway, I thought about writing a sequel, but at the moment, I have no idea where I’d want my time travelers to go. I did start to write something about Janet Erickson, the captain of the Einstein, but I got stuck after a page or two of writing. I have an idea of what I might want, but I’m not sure if it’s a novel length story, a novella, or a short story. If I get around to writing it out, I’ll see.

Don’t Mess With Earth – I actually sent a short story version of this in the mid-1990′s to the Writer’s of the Future contest, but got nowhere with it. I wrote a full length novel, but this is one of my stories that people either like or dislike, and I re-wrote it into a version of Shattered Earth, changing the beginning, and making the novel longer by over 25k words. I have been asked by 1 or 2 readers if I’m going to tell the story of the Ragnor after Earth destroys them for the most part, but I really don’t know. I wrote a page a year or so ago, but haven’t returned to it. We’ll see.

The Usurper – No sequel. I wrote this mostly to push buttons, and if you’ve seen some of the reviews I’ve received on Amazon, you’ll know that I did just that.

New Frontier & Final Frontier – Final Frontier is the sequel to New Frontier, so I’m not sure about another sequel. I might one day go back to Final Frontier to include a chapter or two near the end, because I glossed over what happened to the Soviet Starship Gagarin in one of the alternate timelines, but if I say more than that, it would be spoiling the story for those that haven’t read it.

My End Times Series of novels – The next novel I’m going to write is about the story of Michael Evans, starting with his grandfather, who I’ll have palling around with Hitler in WW2. The Evans’ will try to manipulate events from behind the scenes, get England to balk at giving Israel as much land as they were going to give them after the war, finance the enemies of Israel, start to interfere in American society, and have appearances by the grandparents of the main characters from Times of Trouble. How Evans finds David Collins and the Iranian, and how they manipulate events before the Tribulation. I think I’ll begin writing it in November, taking time to do a lot of research while I’m doing it, and possibly getting it finished in early 2013. I was also thinking of at least one young adult novel in the series, even though Times of Trial is kind of leaning towards that, since Greg and Laura are two of the main characters, and they’re teens, but I’ll just have to see how that works out.

As for short stories, I’ve come up with a few of those, but a lot of them are so different in genre, I don’t know if I should put those in a short story collection, but I will think about it. Next year, I want to publish at least three more novels, if possible.

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Times of Trouble, a new Christian fiction novel

Times of Trouble is my sixth novel, which will I will upload to Smashwords, B&N, and Createspace sometime in the next few days. It’s a Christian speculative fiction thriller. I’m aiming for the group of Christian readers who read the Left Behind series back in the late 90′s, and I’m hoping they’ll enjoy reading this novel.

What it’s about:

In the near future, the U.S. government has turned into a tyranny as the government agencies known as the EPA and TSA grow with ever more power, taking away the liberty many Americans had known for over two hundred years. They’re joined by a government agency, the Health Administration, which was put together in the mid-2010′s to regulate healthcare.

Told in first person point of view, Brian Atwood, our main character, is a field agent for the FBI in Omaha. His work involves mostly cyber terrorism and actual cases of potential real world terrorism. Eventually, his wife gives birth to their third child, who has Down’s Syndrome, which does not please the Health Administration because there are rules and regulations set-up in cases like these to prevent “genetic freaks” as they like to call them, from sucking up a lot of Health Admin money. Because the Atwoods are born again Christians, they never considered aborting the baby, so now the Health people have to take him away to deal with the problem later.

Meanwhile, the Secret Service decides to recruit Brian to be the personal agent of POTUS due to his great work involving a case that dealt with terrorism that would’ve involved Offutt Air Force Base. Brian’s faith is tested every day as he deals with a man that has no morals from what Brian can see, and is tested even more when his wife finds out that she’s dying from a fast growing form of breast cancer. Trouble in the rest of the world occurs as Iran attempts to nuke Israel, which fails spectacularly, so Israel takes care of the problem. This brings condemnation from everyone, including the US, which takes the side of Iran.

When the re-election of POTUS doesn’t turn out the way he wanted it, he and his people declare the election nullified because of supposed “irregularities” with the ballots. POTUS claims that the new President-elect may take the seat sometime in the middle of next year, if everything looks to be sorted out. POTUS purges his staff of what he considers unloyal people, including Brian. At the same time, he loses his wife, but regains the son he thought he had lost.

Brian moves back to his family home in Nebraska, where we follow what happens as the country slowly falls apart. Events play out as Brian and his family sees the End Times approach.

Stay tuned for news on when it can be purchased.

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#SampleSunday: New Frontier

Since I finally have something new to share for Sample Sunday, here’s the Prologue to my newest novel, New Frontier, which is a alternate history speculative fiction novel. The Prologue will be expanded on in Book 2, when the starship that leaves at the end of the novel encounters problems while trying to find a missing starship that lead them back to the 1960′s….  Available on Apple, Nook, Kindle, and Smashwords for $2.99,and paperback for $9.99 (links at end of post).

Prologue

“We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too. It is for these reasons that I regard the decision last year to shift our efforts in space from low to high gear as among the most important decisions that will be made during my incumbency in the office of the Presidency…”

President Kennedy stepped off of the stage after his “New Frontier” speech at Rice University, when he was asked by Texas Governor Daniel, “What did you mean about doing those other things after you said we would go to the moon?”

“That was a mistake. I was going to fill that in by saying that we would eventually explore the rest of our solar system after we take our first steps on the moon, but I forgot about it. Anyway, in the grand scheme of things, who’s going to remember one little paragraph in a speech? All that matters is that I have a vision of what our future holds. The American voters will eat that up.”

“That’s why you’re the President, and not that yahoo, Richard Nixon.”

“I’m sure the American people are grateful for that. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to get back to Washington.”

As Kennedy stepped off of Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, he was met by FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, who was never eager to converse with any of the Kennedy family, but this time he had to. “Mr. President, I need to speak with you in private.”

“What do you want?”

“Like I said, in private.”

“Oh, all right. Follow me to my car, we can speak there.” When they were situated in the back seat of the Presidential limo, Kennedy asked, “Ok, what’s so important that this has to be in private?”

“I’m sure you’re aware of the death of Marilyn Monroe last month…”

“What’s your point?” interrupted an impatient Kennedy.

“The point is that we have her killer in custody.”

“Didn’t the coroner rule it a suicide?”

“Well, someone told him to rule it that, but it really wasn’t…”

“Would you please get to the point already?” interrupted the President again.

“Fine. The FBI was informed that your brother, Bobby, was seen leaving Monroe’s house the day she died. After an exhaustively thorough investigation, it was concluded that Bobby was indeed the person responsible for the death of Marilyn Monroe. He’s now in custody, where he will be put on trial very soon.”

“You can’t do that.”

“Why? Because he’s a Kennedy? Your father may have gotten away with many a thing years ago, but he also had many friends in high places. With him retired, you and your brothers don’t have that luxury, since you are the people in high places. I’ve got so much stuff on you Kennedy’s, all I would have to do is go to the Press and give them everything available. You would be finished in no time. So, yes, I can have your brother put on trial for murder.”

“What can I offer you to withdraw the murder charge?”

“Bribery, eh? Are you sure you really want to try that with me?”

“What do you want from me?”

“Simple, really. You and your family stay out of my way, and I won’t air all of your dirty laundry. When it’s publicly announced that Bobby killed Marilyn, you will be shocked to hear it, and you’ll reluctantly announce that he will no longer be Attorney General of the United States. If you or your family sends your mob goons after me to silence me by killing me, my will has a provision in it that all the documents I have that are related to your family will be released to the Press. Either way, you’ll be ruined. Do I make myself clear?”

“Crystal.”

“Good.” Hoover stepped out of the car, leaving the President to his thoughts.

A year later, on a campaign stop in Dallas, with President Kenendy’s motorcade on its way to Dallas Trade Mart for a luncheon, gunshots rang out while passing through Dealey Plaza. Kennedy heard the bullets whiz by him, but then he heard a sickening sound next to him. His wife had been shot in the head. In the front seat, Governor John Connally, who had just been elected Texas Governor, appeared to have also been shot by the assassin’s bullets. Kennedy started to panic, but really had nowhere to run if an assassin was still trying to shoot at him. The Secret Service rushed in to protect Kennedy, surrounded the car, and the motorcade rushed away to Parkland Hospital. Both Jacqueline Kennedy and John Connally were pronounced dead within an hour of arriving at the hospital. The FBI announced they would begin their investigation.

After the funeral, Kennedy summoned Hoover to his office. “Did you have anything to do with what happened in Dallas, Mr. Hoover?”

“No, but if I did, you can bet that you would be dead, not your wife or the Governor. Unfortunately, we have no suspects. Too many of the witnesses claim that they heard gunshots from one of the buildings or from the grassy knoll that the motorcade was passing, but no one saw a shooter. Whoever may have tried to assassinate you was professional enough to cover their tracks. The FBI and I have run into a brick wall, and have decided to close the investigation. I’m truly sorry for your loss.”

“I’m sure you are. Thank you for coming.” Kennedy summarily dismissed the FBI Director from his office.

Five years later, after John F. Kennedy was no longer eligible to run for President again. He and the rest of the nation learned that Barry Goldwater won the Presidency of the United States in his second try after trying in 1964. Hubert Humphrey, the Democratic challenger since Lyndon Johnson decided to retire, had been assassinated by Sirhan Sirhan six months before the election, so the Democrats ran George McGovern, who was the Vice Presidential candidate, as the replacement. Goldwater soundly defeated McGovern.

While the world was waiting for Apollo 11 to land on the moon, John and Ted Kennedy were having a party on Chappaquiddick Island with their girlfriends the day before the scheduled moon landing to celebrate the fact that John had helped push NASA in that direction. Ted, and his girlfriend, Mary Jo Kopechne, decided to leave because Mary Jo needed to get home. “Teddy, you should stay here, you’re too drunk to be driving.” protested John.

“I know what I’m doing. Just because you’re my older brother doesn’t give you the right to act like dad.” slurred the drunken younger Kennedy.

“Ok, fine, but if you get into a car wreck, don’t blame me. I tried to warn you, you know.”

“Yeah, yeah.”

“Bye, bye Jack.” slurred the drunk Mary Joe, as she waved at him.

John waved goodbye to them as the two drunkenly got into Ted’s Oldsmobile and drove away. The next morning, Edgartown Police Chief James Arena knocked on the door of the house, John answered the door, and asked the Chief, “Can I help you?”

“Mr. Kennedy, I regret to inform you that your brother and his escort were found dead inside the Oldsmobile at Poucha Pond. It appears they didn’t see the end of the bridge and the car kept going. Due to how the car settled in the water, the two died from drowning. A pair of fisherman on a fishing boat noticed the car earlier this morning, informed us, and we managed to bring the car back up an hour ago. Unfortunately, I need you to come down the Station to ID them so we can officially record that the family knows about it. Can you come with me?”

“Yeah, I’ll come with you. I knew he shouldn’t have left while he was drunk. I knew something would happen, but he refused to listen to me. Now look where it’s gotten him…”

Even though John was hung-over, he was in shock at the news of his brothers’ death, and he was increasingly getting depressed over it. Of the four boys in his family, he was the only one that was left, and he wasn’t sure how his father, Joseph, would handle having yet another son not on Earth. Joseph had ambitious dreams for all of his children, yet of the nine children, four were no longer living. John was beginning to wonder if his family was cursed.

He went with the Police Chief, identified the bodies, and spent the rest of the week organizing a funeral. John wondered why all of this tragedy was happening around him, but not to him. He decided he needed to focus his energies now on his two children, before anything else happened to anyone else in his family. So, he decided to withdraw from public life, because it seemed to him that his immediate family would live longer that way. Four months later, Joseph died at the age of 81 of natural causes.

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New Frontier, new novel coming in early 2012

I’m currently working on the last couple of chapters of my new speculative fiction novel, which I call New Frontier. I’m expecting to be done sometime between the end of December to the end of January, barring unforseen circumstances of course.

The story originally started off with a prologue with the whole speech given by President Kennedy at Rice University in 1962 about all of our technological advances and how we’ve managed to come so far in such a short amount of time. I decided to cut that down, to the one paragraph everyone remembers him saying, which is:

“We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too. It is for these reasons that I regard the decision last year to shift our efforts in space from low to high gear as among the most important decisions that will be made during my incumbency in the office of the Presidency…”

I’m not going to reveal any spoilers from this particular sub-plot, because I plan on having a 2nd book in this to make a series to explain why what happens in the prologue happens the way it does.

After this, I begin with a what-if Ronald Reagan became President in 1976 instead of 1980? Well, he has the US continue with the Moon landings and eventually building a Base on the moon, and even declaring that we’ll have people on Mars before 1989.

The Soviets decide to one-up the Americans, and decide to build a starship that would leave the solar system. Their attitude is basically, why do we need to piddle around the Sol System when there’s other solar systems out there to be conquered. The 2nd book will explore what happens to the Soviet ship, which, of course, will be after the Americans eventually send their own ship in the 2nd novel.

There is a storyline that follows the 1979 Iranian Hostage Crisis, but this time it ends in a completely different fashion. I have Osama bin Laden as a young apprentice to Khomeini, and he goes off on his own to form Al Qaeda (this is alternate history after all). In his first foray into terrorism, he makes a big statement that affects American politics in a big way. The US hunts him down and captures him (I was actually writing that when Osama was killed by the Seals, which de-railed my writing of this novel for a couple of weeks). He is taken care of in a way most ancient by people he hates.

In the meantime, we now have a base on the moon, a space station in orbit, and I re-write what happens with the Teacher in Space program by having Christa McAuliffe travel to the Moon to teach from there for a week. This time, the Challenger doesn’t blow up due to engineers discovering a problem, even though she’s not on that shuttle, and she gets to the Moon.

The US announces the team that will travel to Mars to establish a base there, and the Soviets use this opportunity to ask that two of their cosmonauts could go. The new POTUS tells the Soviet Premier no, as long as Eastern Europe was under the boot of communism. Weeks later, the Berlin Wall falls as does the Iron Curtain, and the US and USSR agree to let two cosmonauts go to Mars.

Terrorism raises its ugly head once again when the space station is attacked by remnants of Al Qaeda, and it also occurs to the Mars mission….

Near the end of the novel, colonists land on Mars, including Christa McAuliffe and her family. It’s the beginning of human colonization of the rest of the solar system.

At the end, the US and Russia announce a joint mission to explore the rest of the galaxy, and part of the mission is to find the missing Soviet starship, which will lead us back to what’s happening in the prologue when part of their mission goes awry.

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