Saturday, November 2, 2019

Demon Lord X - Forge of Time

The tenth book of the Demon Lord series is now available on pre-order at Smashwords, Apple, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Amazon and other retailers.

Here's an excerpt to whet your appetite for what you can expect to read in Forge of Time:

The throng murmured, many of its members turning to each other with furrowed brows, but the disturbance died down when the judge raised a hand.
“If you’re trying to incite unrest,” he said, “you’ll fail, and you’ll earn yourself a worse punishment. You should keep quiet, while you’ve only lost your tongue.” He signalled to the other two leather-clad thugs. “Arrest her.”
The men shoved through the mob towards her.
“What you’re doing is wrong!” she yelled. “If this is the kind of justice those blue bastards impose, they’re as bad as dark gods! They’re monsters!”
“Your heresy just earned you a death sentence.” The judge turned to the jailers on the podium. “What are you waiting for? Get on with it!”
No!”
Ashryn scrambled over the railing, and the crowd below surged aside as she dropped. She landed lightly, the hawk tattoo on her back tingling, and headed for the judge, people shuffling out of her way. He swung to face her, and the jailer with the hatchet quit the scaffold to intercept her. As he seized her arm, her golden snake tattoo glimmered, came to life and slithered up his sleeve. He released her with a yell and recoiled, searching his clothes for the viper that slid under them, its progress marked by a long, coiling bulge. The judge’s mouth flopped open and the other jailer stared. The youth wrenched free of his captor’s slackened hold and dived into the throng.
The spectators were agog as the first jailer swore and squirmed, hunting for the elusive serpent. He stripped off his jacket and flung it down, then grabbed at his chest as a gleam of gold vanished under his shirt. He yelled and ripped off the garment, spraying buttons, and the viper slithered into his trousers and coiled around one leg. Ashryn smiled as the brawny man yanked down his trousers and made a grab for the snake, which slid into his undershorts with a hiss. He rummaged inside his remaining garment, his face twisted with dread at the threat to his most sensitive parts, and she held out her arm before he resorted to extreme measures to evict the snake, doubtless to the crowd’s disgust. The shimmering viper reappeared on her skin and returned to its dormant state. The jailer groped around for a minute longer before realising it was gone, then turned his back and dragged up his trousers, darting her murderous looks as the onlookers tittered.
The judge closed his mouth and scowled at her. “So, you must be the sorceress I’ve heard about. Our gods will want to meet you, and yet… The tales tell of how everyone understands each other near you, but these people are still speaking their own tongues.”
“You know nothing, because you’re a moron! You’re a spineless lackey, too.” She raised a finger, making him blanch and step back. “You leave these poor people alone from now on.”
“Since you have magic, our gods will deal with you.”
“They’ll have to find me first, and I reckon I just gained the favour of the downtrodden masses here, so good luck with that.”
     Ashryn spun on her heel, and the crowd parted to let her through. The thugs who had been sent to arrest her stepped into her path, looking apprehensive, but the judge flicked a hand and they let her pass. Evidently he wanted to avoid another demoralising magical display in front of so many witnesses. Jeharad caught up when she was halfway back to the shack.
“What the hell was that?”
“How much did you see?”
“Everything; after you jumped off the balcony, I climbed up.”
“That was myth magic, for defence.” She smiled. “It was quite entertaining, huh?”
Jeharad chuckled. “I thought he was going to strip right off.”
“He might have, if I hadn’t recalled it.”
His mirth faded. “You shouldn’t have called so much attention to yourself.”
“Maybe not, but I couldn’t let them cripple that poor boy. I think the locals might help to hide us now, too. It’ll be beneficial to get in their good books.”
“I wouldn’t count on that. If they’re loyal to their gods, you’ll have made matters worse.”
“Who would be loyal to such barbarous gods?” she asked.
“Desperate people who know they won’t survive long without them.”

Thursday, February 11, 2016

New Covers for The Cyber Chronicles Series

Here are the new Cyber Chronicles covers, which I really enjoyed creating. Science-fiction allows leeway for great creativity, and I'm very pleased with how these turned out, although some went through several versions before I was reasonably satisfied. The curse of a perfectionist. I would have spent more time on all the covers, and perhaps improved them more, but at some stage I had to call a halt and move on, or I'd never have finished them. I hope you like these!










Thursday, February 4, 2016

New Covers for Slave Empire and The Broken World

Below are the new covers for these two series, either completely new or totally revamped with some previous elements. Some of these went through several versions before I settled on a final cover design that I like. As I got better at using the software, I was able to improve the quality and be more adventurous. I love art, and enjoyed making these, although there’s always room for improvement. I think these are much better than the old ones.









Thursday, January 28, 2016

New Covers for The Queen’s Blade Revealed


Here are the new covers for The Queen’s Blade series. These are now on the paperback versions of the series, currently available at CreateSpace.com and Amazon worldwide. You'll find Book One here:  https://www.createspace.com/3658659. It took a lot of consideration before I was satisfied that these covers suit the series and the characters, and I hope you agree.








Wednesday, January 20, 2016

New Covers Revealed


I’ve now created new covers for most of my books - the ones that had horrible, rushed jobs with the ‘never judge a book’ thinking and the hope that readers wouldn’t feel the covers detracted from the overall experience. I intend to publish all the books as paperbacks, so good covers are crucial. I hope these are the last covers I do, at least for a while, not counting new books, of course. I think these are truer to the books’ content, some depicting scenes. I’ve taken into account the results of my poll on FaceBook, wherein I learnt that the book title is more important than the series title, and changed the titling accordingly. Below are the new covers for the Demon Lord series. I hope you like them!







Saturday, June 27, 2015

Time Stop - Extract from Demon Lord IX: The Forgotten Lands


This extract is from Chapter Four:
Bane said, “I am on the same quest, but I cannot reveal myself. Telvaron will want to kill me.”
“Telvaron wants to kill everyone,” the greying man said. “It’s just a matter of how and when.”
“True, but he will hunt me down himself.”
“Why?”
Bane glanced around, steeling himself to take the plunge. “I am a god.”
The men roared with laughter for several minutes. Bane sipped his ambrosia and waited for the hilarity to die down. The grey-haired man wiped his eyes, chortling.
“What sort?”
“I command the darkness.”
The men fell about again, hooting, and two were so overcome they slid under the table. Other patrons drew closer to share the joke. Bane raised a hand and flicked his fingers.
“Stop.”
Everyone in the taproom froze except the five at his table, whose laughter died as they became aware of the silence. They stared about, their expressions wary or disbelieving. The grizzled man tore his eyes from the stationary scene and gaped at Bane.
“You did that? You… stopped time.”
“Yes.”
“To prove -”
“Yes.”
“So -”
“Yes.”
The man sat back. “Why do you want to free the goddess? If you’re a master of the darkness…”
“I fight for the light.” Bane flicked his fingers. “Resume.”
The hubbub recommenced, and the patrons who had taken an interest in the joke at his table returned to their previous pursuits after a few moments of eyeing the now-solemn sextet.
“Oy!” A bellow from across the room made Bane wince and close his eyes. “What the hell do you think you’re playing at, old bean?” Dramon shouted.
Bane shot him a glare. Dramon snorted and nudged his brother, and the two muttered.
“Who’s he?” the greying man asked.
“Do not worry about him. Do you want my help now?”
The man thrust out a callused hand. “I’m Jogan.”

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Troll God - Extract from Demon Lord IX: The Forgotten Lands


This extract is from Chapter One:
Nomard stamped, sending a ripple through the quasi-rock under their feet. It shivered, and then heaved. The stench intensified to a sickening putridity, and the valley floor writhed, sent up tendrils in search of prey and turned from black to mottled grey. Several tendrils snaked up the ship’s flanks, and it rocked, and then rose. Bane jumped back onto the ramp, and Drevarin followed.
Nomard drew his sword and set off. “Tallyho!”
The troll god was over a thousand yards tall, Bane calculated. Nomard, however, grew larger with every step, and his apparel and sword grew with him. Like an earth demon, he drew matter from his surroundings, particularly under his feet, which meant he incorporated the dromon’s substance too. The semi-sentient entity groped for him with multiple tendrils, but Nomard merely added them to his flesh and ripped them free. Molten metal erupted from the ground in glowing streams and joined the medley of matter that swelled the demon god’s form. By the time he was halfway to Eord, Nomard was about five hundred yards tall.
Drevarin grunted. “Impressive.”
Nomard was roughly seven hundred yards tall when the troll god twitched, shedding dust, then raised his head and opened purple eyes. He focussed on Nomard, and his brow furrowed.
Drevarin remarked, “Troll gods spend so much time immobile that dirt accumulates and moss and plants grow in it. If they fall asleep in a sunny place, they can end up resembling troll-shaped forests. It serves as excellent camouflage, but they tend to rub off the trees when they wake up.”
Nomard was now almost as tall as the troll god, streams of dust flowing into him from all around, along with chunks of the dromon, which writhed and tried to snag his legs. The troll god bent and gripped a massive, battle-scarred hammer that was half-buried in the mountainside. He ripped it free with a gritty scrape and turned to face Nomard. The demon god hefted his sword.
“Eord, old chap, is that you?” Nomard’s deep voice echoed around the valley.