Special Guest Authors
Edward McKeown escaped from NY to Charlotte, North Carolina which is now home to his “Knight Templar” urban fantasy series. He enjoys a wide variety of interests from ballroom dance to the martial arts.
Ed has also edited four Sha’Daa anthologies of tales of the Apocalypse and a wide variety of short stories and is perhaps best known for his Robert Fenaday/Shasti Rainhell series of SF novels set on the Privateer Sidhe.
He has now debuted a new series set in the same universe, featuring a 50,000 year old android named Maauro and her friend, a disgraced pilot named Wrik Trigardt, as they battle governments and the Thieves Guild for their freedom in My Outcast State.
“Three alien machines descend to the asteroid base of their enemies. The ensuing battle is short and savage. The lone survivor hopes either for rescue, or for another chance to engage its enemies. It will be a long wait…
Wrik Trigardt ekes out a living in the Kandalor system with his small ship, Sinner. He is caught between his failed past and a grim present in service to the local crimelord, Dusko. An expedition to the Rift Asteroids promises better days, but when the well of time is disturbed no one can say what will surface.”
Set in the same universe as the Robert Fenaday/Shasti Rainhell stories, but decades later, My Outcast State begins a new cycle of exploration of Confederation Space. The second book, Against that Time, will be out later this year
Traci Loudin is author of The Last of the Ageless, a post-apocalyptic adventure set more than three centuries in the future. Traci's books combine science fiction and fantasy elements into a unique blend of speculative fiction, often with a few dashes of action, adventure, and end of the world disasters peppered with mutants, aliens, and telepathic shapeshifters.
Traci has always enjoyed reading about fantastic worlds and writing intriguing characters. As a young West Virginian, Traci looked forward to library trips with her mother and the evenings when her father read H.G. Wells to her. Nowadays, Traci spends her time exploring geeky topics and scientific findings on her blog; www.traciloudin.com
Three centuries ago, humans and aliens fought for control of the Earth, ending in an apocalyptic disaster...
Dalan is a shapeshifter. He hails from a tribe of mutants dedicated to preserving fading species by taking their forms. To become fully recognized as an adult, he must pass a trial in the wastelands far from home.
Nyr is a killer. When her lust for bounty yields an ancient artifact of mysterious origin, everything she knows is turned upside down. Once a hunter, now a pawn, she must learn to rely on others to survive what's coming.
Korreth is a slave. Without any extra talents, he depends on nothing more than his strength and wits as he flees the army of mutants that enslaved him. He must return home to warn his people before the swelling ranks of monsters threaten his family.
...but in the shadows, a new threat rises--one that could end what little remains of civilization: The Last of the Ageless.
Matthew Saunders (Sunday only)
J. Matthew Saunders, a native of Greenville, South Carolina, is the author of the Daughters of Shadow and Blood trilogy as well as numerous published fantasy and horror short stories. He received a B.A. in history from Vanderbilt University and a master's degree from the School of Journalism at the University of South Carolina. He received his law degree in California and practiced there as an attorney for several years. He is an unapologetic European history geek, enjoys the Celtic fiddle, and makes a mean sundried tomato-basil pesto. He currently lives near Charlotte, North Carolina with his wife and two children. To find out more, visit www.jmsaunders.com.
Buda, Ottoman Hungary, 1599: Yasamin, the naïve daughter of an Ottoman bureaucrat, finds herself trapped in an arranged marriage to the son of the powerful governor of Buda. She is unprepared for the gossip and scheming rampant in the palace but realizes she faces more than petty jealousies when someone tries to drown her in the baths on the day before her wedding. An unearthly menace lurks in the palace corridors, and the one person able to protect Yasamin is a soldier named Iskander, who seems to appear whenever she needs him. Charming and confident, he is nothing like her new husband, but trusting either of them could be a deadly mistake.
Berlin, Germany, 1999: Adam Mire, an American professor of history, discovers a worn, marked-up copy of Dracula. The clues within its pages send him on a journey across the stark landscape of Eastern Europe, searching for a medallion that once belonged to Dracula himself. But a killer hounds Adam’s footsteps, and each new clue he uncovers brings him closer to a beguiling, raven-haired woman named Yasamin Ashrafi, who might be the first of Dracula’s legendary Brides.
Adam has an agenda of his own, however, a quest more personal than anyone knows. One misstep, and his haunted past could lead to death from a blade in his back … or from Yasamin’s fatal embrace.
Laurie McKay is an author and biology instructor who lives in Durham, NC. When she's not working, she spends time with her family and her old, grumpy dog, Simon.
Her MG fantasy novel, VILLAIN KEEPER (The Last Dragon Charmer #1) and her second book QUEST MAKER (The Last Dragon Charmer #2) are available now. The final book in the trilogy, REALM BREAKER (The Last Dragon Charmer #3), will be available in March.
BOOK DESCRIPTION: VILLAIN KEEPER
“All his life, Prince Caden has dreamed of being sent on a quest to slay a dragon. But before he has the chance, he is ripped from his home in the Winterlands of Razzon and finds himself in Asheville, North Carolina—a land with no magic and no dragons. To make matters worse, the young sorceress Brynne - his sometimes friend, oftentimes rival - is stranded with him.
The longer Caden and Brynne are in Asheville, the more they realize there is magic in this strange land after all. More important, there may just be dragons here, too. But what if Caden’s destiny isn’t to slay a dragon, like he's always believed?
Readers will be transported by this first book in an epic new series for middle grade readers about a brave young prince’s quest to find answers, honor, friendship—and what it really means to be a hero.”
Anne Clinard Barnhill’s debut novel, AT THE MERCY OF THE QUEEN, was released in January, 2012. This historical fiction takes place at the court of Henry VIII and involves one of Barnhill’s ancestors, Lady Margaret Shelton, one of three named mistresses of the king. Diane Haeger, author of The Secret Bride, calls this book “an absolutely splendid read.”
For her second historical novel, QUEEN ELIZABETH’S DAUGHTER, Anne has once again shaken her family tree and this time, Mary Shelton appeared, lady-in-waiting to Queen Elizabeth. A royal ward, Mary is like a daughter to the Virgin Queen, and, like any mother, Elizabeth wants to make a fine match for her girl. The Earl of Oxford seems to be exactly what the queen has in mind, but Mary knows him to be villainous and cruel. Instead, she finds the charms of a lowly courtier, Sir John Skydemore, more to her liking. But he’s poor and he’s a Catholic at a time when the Old Religion is banned. Indeed, because of traitorous plots against Elizabeth sanctioned by the Pope himself, being a Catholic has become dangerous. Will Mary risk the queen’s wrath and marry her love? If so, what will become of them?
Janine K. Spendlove is a KC-130 pilot in the United States Marine Corps. In the writing world she is an award winning author primarily known for her War of the Seasons fantasy series. She has several short stories published in various speculative fiction anthologies, to include the Star Wars tie-in story “Inbrief.” Janine is also a member of Women in Aerospace (WIA), BroadUniverse (BU), Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA), and is a co-founder of GeekGirlsRun (GGR), a community for geek girls (and guys) who just want to run, share, have fun, and encourage each other. A graduate of Brigham Young University, Janine loves pugs, enjoys knitting, making costumes, playing Beatles tunes on her guitar, and spending time with her family. She resides with her husband and daughter in North Carolina. She is currently at work on her next novel. Fine out more at JanineSpendlove.com.
Misty Massey is the author of MAD KESTREL, a rollicking adventure of magic on the high seas (Tor), KESTREL'S VOYAGES, a collection of short stories featuring those rambunctious pirates (Amazon) and the upcoming KESTREL'S DANCE (Lore Seekers Press). She is a co-editor of THE WEIRD WILD WEST (Espec) and LAWLESS LANDS (Falstaff Books), and a founding member of Magical Words, the well-known blog for and about writers (magicalwords.net). When she's not writing, Misty studies Middle Eastern Dance and performs at regional events as the opportunity arises. You can keep up with what Misty's doing at mistymassey.com. Facebook and Twitter.
John Hartness (Sunday only)
John G. Hartness is a teller of tales, a righter of wrong, defender of ladies’ virtues, and some people call him Maurice, for he speaks of the pompatus of love. He is also the award-winning author of the urban fantasy series The Black Knight Chronicles (Bell Bridge Books), the Bubba the Monster Hunter comedic horror series, the Quincy Harker, Demon Hunter dark fantasy series, and many other projects.
In 2016, John teamed up with a pair of other publishing industry ne’er-do-wells and founded Falstaff Books, a small press dedicated to publishing the best of genre fictions “misfit toys.”
In his copious free time John enjoys long walks on the beach, rescuing kittens from trees and playing Magic: the Gathering.
For samples of John’s ridiculous sense of humor, check out these free ebooks - http://bit.ly/1U8eASF
Gail Z. Martin
Gail Z. Martin is the author of Vendetta: A Deadly Curiosities Novel in her urban fantasy series set in Charleston, SC (Solaris Books); Shadow and Flame the fourth and final book in the Ascendant Kingdoms Saga (Orbit Books); The Shadowed Path (Solaris Books) and Iron and Blood a new Steampunk series (Solaris Books) co-authored with Larry N. Martin. A brand new epic fantasy series will launch in 2017 from Solaris Books.
She is also author of Ice Forged, Reign of Ash and War of Shadows in The Ascendant Kingdoms Saga, The Chronicles of The Necromancer series (The Summoner, The Blood King, Dark Haven, Dark Lady’s Chosen); The Fallen Kings Cycle (The Sworn, The Dread) and the urban fantasy novel Deadly Curiosities. Gail writes three ebook series: The Jonmarc Vahanian Adventures, The Deadly Curiosities Adventures and The Blaine McFadden Adventures. The Storm and Fury Adventures, steampunk stories set in the Iron & Blood world, are co-authored with Larry N. Martin. Find more at www.GailZMartin.com
A.J. Hartley is the international and NY Times bestselling author of 14 novels including two new young adult series: STEEPLEJACK was released by Tor Teen in June 2016, and CATHEDRALS OF GLASS will be available from To The Stars in November 2016 (in physical stores early 2017), part of a special partnership with Tom DeLonge of Blink 182 and Angels and Airwaves, with whom he is working on another scifi series the first of which is Sekret Machines: Chasing Shadows, which was accompanied by an EP by Angels and Airwaves. His previous books include the mystery/thrillers The Mask of Atreus, On the Fifth Day, What Time Devours and Tears of the Jaguar and the young adult fantasy adventures Act of Will and Will Power. The first of his Darwen Arkwright children’s fantasy trilogy (Darwen Arkwright and the Peregrine Pact) came out from Penguin/Razorbill in 2011 and won SIBA’s best YA novel of 2012. He has also co-written with David Hewson two adaptations of Shakespeare plays as epic thrillers: Macbeth, a Novel (audio edition voiced by Alan
Cumming) and Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, a Novel (the audio book, performed by Richard Armitage, was named Audible’s book of the year for 2014). He is UNC Charlotte’s Robinson Distinguished Professor of Shakespeare, specializing in performance theory and practice, and is the author of various scholarly books and articles from the world’s best academic publishers including Palgrave and Cambridge University Press.
He is an honorary fellow of the University of Central Lancashire, UK.
Darin Kennedy (Sunday only)
Darin Kennedy, born and raised in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, is a graduate of Wake Forest University and Bowman Gray School of Medicine. After completing family medicine residency in the mountains of Virginia, he served eight years as a United States Army physician and started his first novel in the sands of northern Iraq, a novel you now hold in your hand.
His first published novel, The Mussorgsky Riddle, was born from a fusion of two of his lifelong loves: classical music and world mythology. Pawn’s Gambit, his contemporary fantasy, falls at the intersection of superheroes, magic, and chess.
His short stories can be found in numerous anthologies and magazines, and the best, particularly those about a certain Necromancer for Hire, are collected for your reading pleasure under Darin’s own imprint, 64Square Publishing.
Doctor by day and novelist by night, he writes and practices medicine in Charlotte, NC. When not engaged in either of the above activities, he has been known to strum the guitar, enjoy a bite of sushi, and rumor has it he even sleeps on occasion.
He is represented by Stacey Donaghy at Donaghy Literary Group.
Find him online at darinkennedy.com
North Carolina author, Nicole Givens Kurtz, is known for the futuristic thriller series, Cybil Lewis. Her novels have been named as finalists in the Fresh Voices in Science Fiction, EPPIE in Science Fiction, and Dream Realm Awards in science fiction. Nicole's short stories have earned an Honorable Mention in L. Ron Hubbard's Writers of the Future contest, and have appeared in such numerous anthologies and other publications. Visit her at Other Worlds Pulp, www.nicolegivenskurtz.com
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