Monday, August 3, 2015

Guest Post: Saying Goodbye: Mind Over All and Ending a Trilogy, Karina Fabian

You all remember Karina Fabian. 

I've reviewed her books before. 

I've interviewed her before. 

But now, she's posting one something that's very near to me right now.

Saying goodbye.

Saying Goodbye: Mind Over All and Ending a Trilogy

I first met Deryl in 1986. He was a college sophomore: smart, self-assured with just a hint of snark. He was studying psychic powers because he himself had them, and when his professor decided to kidnap him for study (of a more biological nature), he and his roommate fled to another world and had great adventures.

At least that’s what I thought at the time. The Miscria never sold, so I put it and my dreams of being an author aside and went on with my life.

Ten years later, as a mother and former military officer, I brushed off the manuscript and gagged. Really, a guy who suddenly manifests telepathy during puberty grows up well adjusted? That kid needed some real issues before the story would sell. By the time I got done messing with his mind, he was living in a mental institution instead of a dorm and his roommate turned into a psychiatric intern hired to befriend him because Deryl was sullen, snarky, and without hope. The Miscria became a trilogy because it took an entire novel just to convince Deryl he wasn’t crazy.

Mind Over Mind, the first in the trilogy, came out from DragonMoon in 2011, with MindOver Psyche following in 2013. And now, Mind Over All finishes out the trilogy. Over the three books, Deryl conquers his abilities and his personal demons with the help of his friend, Joshua. Then the duo teleport (by accident) to another planet, where Deryl confronts his real-life “demons”: The Master who manipulated him in hopes of making him a weapon and the Miscria who had thought he was an oracle to guide her in protecting her world. With Joshua as his back-up, he defeats the Master and wins over the Miscria (Tasmae). They marry, and he takes Joshua back to Earth and his own fiancĂ©, Sachiko. In Mind OverAll, Deryl returns to Earth to fetch Joshua and Sachiko and takes them to Kanaan where they work together to stop another planet from crashing into Kanaan. Finally, in the companion novella, Hearts Over Mind, Joshua and Sachiko finally get their wedding day.

It has been a wild ride of love and adventure, exploring psychic communication, neuro linguistic programming, and orbital mechanics. For over a decade, I’ve lived with and in some ways as these characters. Deryl fought his way back to sanity to discover he didn’t want to live a “normal life.” Tasmae discovers not all prophesies are inevitable. Joshua, a small-town boy from Colorado, had adventures like he’d only read in SFF novels, and gets to be a rock star. Sachiko heals at least from the trauma of her abortion. Even the Master turns out to be something other than the manipulative monster Deryl had loathed and feared. A centuries-long war has ended, and at last two worlds can rebuild and grow in peace.

I’ve had my own wild ride as an author. Working on these novels has introduced me to so many wonderful people and ideas. My astronomy professor in college helped me work out the dynamics of crashing planets. Friends from all over the Internet jumped in with psychiatric and medical advice. I’ve had the privilege of working with several wonderful editors at DragonMoon, each of which not only made the book better but made me a better writer. And Mind Over Mind’s cover is still my all-time fave. I’ve written and had published nearly a dozen books and hundreds of stories.

The journey with the Mind Over trilogy is over. (Although I may write about their kids. We’ll see.) My own writing journey continues on, with dragon detectives, nuns in space, and zombie exterminators. Who knows what else? It’s been very satisfying, however, to have finished the project I began as a college Freshman.

By day, Karina is a mild-mannered reviewer of business software and services for After hours, she’s a psychic intent on saving the world; a snarky dragon who thinks he saves the world all-too regularly, a zombie exterminator who just wants her world clear of undead vermin, and nuns whose callings have taken them off our world. Needless to say, her imagination is vast, her stories legion, and her brain crowded. When she’s not converting her wild tales to stories, she’s enjoying time with her husband, Rob, their four kids, and their two dogs.

Find Karina at:

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

The Cruxshadows - Citadel

Yup. More Music to Write to. Why? Because It's only Wednesday, and this is the sixth blog for the week.  Yes. Really. Between the new puppy post, the CWG conference, and the radio show, this has been a busy few days. So I'm taking a little bit of a break.

Also? Because come on, it's Troy in rock music. What's not to like?

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

#SadPuppies Bite Back XIII: A WorldCon Carol

Yeah. I know. If there was ever a post to be called "Lucky dog," it's number 13. But, not to be.  You can only imagine how many chapter 11s I've hard to rename from "bankrupt."

If you have no idea what an SPBB post is, go to the Sad Puppies tab above, and start reading. Otherwise, you are going to be so very, very lost.

The short version? This is a parody. A strange joke that started with a strange fever dream, and spiraled into a comedy of epic proportions.

You may have noticed over time that this has gone back and forth, sliding along a temporal spectrum like a slide rule. That's because this is in no particular order.  And, last time I checked, Brad is busy in the sandbox playing with ISIS, Larry has better things to do than WorldCon (like DragonCon), and most everyone else has a life, so my Puppies of WorldCon posts weren't even pretending to predict the future. You might have caught that around the time I unleashed Cthulu on them...and if you didn't read prior entries, spoilers. Aren't you sad you didn't read them before. Now go ahead, this post will still be here when you get back.

Thanks to Matt Bowman, Jason Garrick and Marina Fontaine for their input on this one.

And now, we're almost done, it is once again time to ....

Oh, you know.

A WorldCon Carol

First Spirit

[To begin with, Heinlein was dead. As dead as a doornail, but not quite as dead as the neurons in John Scalzi's brain. The two Neilsen-Haydens, Teresa and Patrick, are fast asleep in their beds -- single beds, on opposite sides of the room. The room is filled with a sudden, bright light. In the center of the room is a glowing, translucent figure in a midshipman's uniform.]

[Ghost]: "I am the ghost of--"

[TNH:] "Nooooooo! Hsssssss . . ."

[Ghost]: ". . . What?"

[PNH]: "She's . . . allergic to . . . you know. That thing some people say in place of 'holiday season.'"

[Ghost]: "You mean 'Christmas'?"

[TNH screams. It sounds EXACTLY like a Wilhelm Scream.]

[Ghost]: "Wow. You're not very original, are you?"

[PNH] looks like he's about to agree, but then thinks better of it] "Hey, don't talk about my -- oh, wait, sorry, dear. I almost defended you there."

[TNH]: "That's okay, honey. I know, this Hugo situation is enough to make even the best feminist male start acting like a chauvinist pig."

[Ghost]: "Well, that's why I'm here."

[PNH]: "To be a chauvinist pig?"

[Ghost]: "No, I'm the Ghost of Hugos Past."

[TNH]: "Nooooooo! That's almost as bad!"

[PNH]: "I have to agree. That stuff contains Heinlein."

[TNH]: "Hsssssss . . ."

[PNH: "Don't worry, dear, it also contains Marion Zimmer Bradley and David Gerrold. So this fellow can't be ALL bad."

[Ghost]: "Hey, give me a break. I can't be blamed for that one. That's up to the Ghost of Hugos Present. Some years he gets drunk. I think that year he was high."

[PNH narrows his eyes] So, what do you want?

[Ghost] I'm one of three spirits that will appear to you tonight.  They will be your chances to change your ways, lest you lose the Hugos FOREVER.

[Both cringe. TNH snarls first] How dare you! We can never lose the Hugos!

[Ghost smiles] Wanna bet.

[PNH] Who are you, anyway?  [Looks at uniform]  Who the hell are you, anyway? Some David Weber fan? 

[Ghost frowns] Listen, buddy. Step one, I don't want to be here either. We were going to send Harlan, but he's still alive. We made him an offer anyway, and he still wouldn't do it. So you got me. As for your vaunted "message fiction of the past" --

[With a snap of his fingers, the room is fill with books. The two are buried alive in books.  All of them are hardcover, gold-edged, printed on high-quality paper. Both of them have to scurry under their beds to avoid being crushed.]

[The Ghost stands in the middle of the room, untouched. His voice carries to them despite all of the books in the way] This is your "message fiction."  The patriotism of Frederic Brown! The innovation of Bester! The faith of Walter Miller! The anti-communism of Vonnegut! The scope of Clarke! The surrealism of Dick! The wonder of Dune! The overpowering imagination of Niven!

[TNH screams again]  Make it stop! Make it sttoooopppp!  Too much unapproved literature! Too much fun, profitable books! I need a safe zone! I need a John Scalzi novel!

[Ghost] And, of course, there's me!  I would have brought my powered armor, but it wouldn't fit in the room.

[The beds break under the pressure of the books. They are slowly smothered.  The Ghost laughs] And that's for destroying Starship Troopers!  BWHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAH

[The books and the ghost of Robert Heinlein disappear. The beds are perfectly fine.  They crawl out from beneath them and look around. It looks as though nothing had happened.]

[TNH] Just a dream.

[PNH]  Yes, dear.

[TNH] Nothing happened.

[PNH]  Yes, dear.

[TNH] Absolutely not a problem.

[PNH]  Yes, dear.

[TNH] We should go back to bed.

[PNH]  Of course, dear.

[PNH and TNH crawl back into bed. They book look around, then each of them turns on their book lights on their nightstands. They flash each other nervous smiles, then tuck in]

Photos of the Catholic Writer's Guild Conference, Live!

Yeah, I had some fun.

Especially when you got to Karina Fabian and her laser cows.  Yes. That happened. Take a look, you'll see how my brain works. Or doesn't.

The following are random things I've found at this conference over the course of three days. Some are shiny. Some are people. Some are shiny people.


Cutesy stuff

Sunday, July 26, 2015


We Built That Network on BlogTalkRadio

If you don't know who AML is ... you must be new here.

Ann is the author of Murder in the Vatican: The Church Mysters of Sherlock Holmes, as well as The Watson Chronicles. She's worked for DC comics, written books on Star Wars, a registered soprano, and generally awesome. She is also one of the founding members of the Catholic Writer's Guild.

On Sunday's show, we will discuss the various flavors of Sherlock on television, DC Comics (their TV shows, and their upcoming films), and the Catholic Writer's Guild Conference Live!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

The Cruxshadows - Cruelty

It's Cruxshadows. I  just roll with it....

Though I wouldn't bother with the video on this one, especially if you suffer from vertigo.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

#TBT Flashback Blog: Interview with Ann Margaret Lewis on Murder in the Vatican

Yes, I know it's not Thursday yet, but, well, shut up. It fit the schedule.

In April of 2011, I interviewed the awesome Ann Lewis for the release of her book Murder in the Vatican.

Since then, I am proud, and blessed, to call Ann my friend.

Anyway, I will probably be meeting her as this blog goes live, as I will be in the Catholic Writer's Guild Conference this week. No, I'm not staying away from home. It's only New Jersey.

Also, this Sunday, at 7PM, EST, the awesome, amazing, and wonderful Ann Margaret Lewis will be my guest on The Catholic Geek. And then we're going to have a party.

* * * *

After yesterday's guest blog by the very generous author of Murder in the Vatican, Ann Margaret Lewis, you didn't think things could get better, did you?

Well, they did.

Today, Ann Margaret Lewis has willingly submitted to questions from the A Pius Man blog.

You will notice that some of the questions are numbered differently.  These are questions that came with the press packet that I believed readers of this blog might be interested in.

The questions I came up with are plainly numbered, with no additional lettering ... you'll see what I mean.

So, if you just want to skip to those quesitons I asked, you can ....

Here we go.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Monday, July 20, 2015

The joy of street corners, and politics all the way down

So, I was sort of quiet this weekend, wasn't I? I didn't even have a blog post discussing the next radio show.

Well ... did I ever mention I live on a corner?  A corner that does NOT have a two-way stop sign?

What happens when a body (of a sports car) meets a body (of a Jeep Liberty) driving through New York?  You get a nice game of pool.  The little white sports car is the cut ball. The blue Jeep is the 8 ball.

My house is the corner pocket.

For the record, DO NOT WORRY. Everyone here is fine.  The firemen came in and checked our foundations, etc.  We're good.  Unlike the last time, we didn't even lose any bushes.

Yes, this is the second time this has happened in the last few years. Yay.


Fun fun fun for the whole family.

But I managed to get online for the radio show anyway.

I'll be on and off for the next few days.  As I noted, I'll be driving to NJ for the Catholic Writer's Guild conference.

But, before I leave you with the radio show from yesterday, I must note that ANN MARGARET LEWIS WILL BE ON THE SHOW THIS SUNDAY!!!

If you're wondering "Who?" You must be new here. Come back on Wednesday. 3:-)

Check Out Military Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with We Built That Network on BlogTalkRadio

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Amaranthe - True

Music to write to.

This is a beautiful song.  And no death metal. Which is odd for them.

Friday, July 17, 2015

The Politics of the Damned

I think we should talk.

Yeah, that's never a good sign.

I generally don't do politics on my blog. Okay, I haven't until recently with the Sad Puppies (click tab above for more details), but this week, I need to cover something. And it shouldn't offend you, because if it would, I'm reasonably certain you wouldn't even be reading this blog. You'll see in a minute.

But I have to ask. When did life become an evil? Don't leave just yet, because this has actually become a thing, and I'm seeing it more and more as time goes on. Life is not worth living and people are not worth allowing to live.  I'm not talking about a John Ringo novel where the stupid are eaten / blown up / killed in various horrific ways. No, that's a straight up Darwin Award.  I'm talking about a general contempt for life and living human beings.

Don't believe me? In 1998, there was a book called Rainbow Six. I'm going to spoil the book and the video game based off of it because it's 17 years old now, if you haven't read it yet, what are you waiting for? The bad guys in that novel were eco-terrorists who figured that the world would be just fine without human beings, and if the terrorists were the only human beings left alive to inherit the Earth, then the Earth would be just perfectly fine.

Our heroes couldn't arrest these sickos, so they invaded, took them outside of their modern compound in the midst of the rainforest, stripped them all naked, blew up the compound and said "Fine. You wanted nature. You got nature. The nearest town is a week thataway. Good luck."

Fast forward to 2013, and He That Shall Not Be Named wrote a book called Inferno that Dante would be offended by. The good ending for the novel was that 1/3 of the planet had been sterilized, and, "Oh well, the bad guys have a point. There really are too many people on the planet."

Uh huh. Yeah. You read that right. The bad guy was right. It would be too much trouble to fix it, and there are too many people anyway, so screw all of them.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Superman! Suicide Squad! Who cares?

A while ago, Kevin Feige, currently running the phases of Marvels' movies, has mentioned that Marvel will never go "GrimDark," like the first Batman vs. Superman trailer.

As he said it, I discovered I had the perfect word for what's happening with my tv shows. Seriously, multiple shows in my TV watching season, some of the better ones, have started going into ... bleak, dark, utterly hopeless crap. I'm really kinda tired of it.

But then came the new trailers over at Comic Con.

I guess the first question to ask is: Why is Kyra Segwick is in this film? Why, God? Why? Superman testifying before a Senate hearing? Batfleck shoehorned into the previous Superman film?
You know, the film Man of Steel felt like someone rewrote the awesome Superman: Earth One comic book by the amazing J. Michael Straczynski.

This feels like someone read the other two volumes and said "Hey, wouldn't it be just great if we crammed Batman into this?"


Monday, July 13, 2015

From History to Vampires: Why Honor at Stake?

A question I haven't gotten, and that I had expected, would have been, well, how the bloody blue Hell does one go from The Pius Trilogy to vampires?  Like with Honor At Stake, coming out on Sept 1?

Step one: Once upon a time, I did some fan fiction.  Actually, no, I didn't. My sister did a fan fiction once. I took it, made it far more interesting, and rewrote it as an independent book.  I then decided that the book was a little too ... compact. The first sixty pages of the book? I expanded all of it into Honor At Stake.

As I started expanding it ... well, everyone say it with me: It just spiraled.

The novels were basically "Catholic vampires," where I kicked the mythos into compliance with standard theology, and then did a little rewrite of history since 1789, and....Anyway...

Step two:  one of my Facebook groups wanted something "Dark." A fellow member, Erin Lale was an acquisitions editor at Eternal Press / Damnation books, and she had nothing in her email.  So, I sent in my book, and well...Nothing happened. At all.  No word, no nothing. I got a reply at 1pm the next day saying that it was received.

That evening, I was cleaning out my spam folder.  There was a 6pm response, that very day. Five hours after the confirmation email.

That was when Erin told me they wanted Honor At Stake.

Short version ... I wrote it when I felt like it, I wasn't entirely certain that anyone else would be interested, and now, surprise, they do.

Music to write to: Cruxshadows - Quicksilver

The music is fun. The video is strange, but watchable.

And yes, I DO listen to these as I write. As with every music blog.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

TONIGHT on The Catholic Geek: John C. Wright and L. Jagi Lamplighter

This week, The Catholic Geek is proud to host two prolific authors: Hugo-nominated author and Rabid Puppy John C. Wright (Count to a Trillion) and his wife L. Jagi Lamplighter (Prospero's Daughter). They will be discussing an after action report on LibertyCon, and the Superversive Literary Movement. Also, they might be prompted to discuss their fiction, including Wright's latest, Somewither,

John C. Wright is a retired attorney, newspaperman and newspaper editor, who was only once on the lam and forced to hide from the police who did not admire his newspaper.

L. Jagi Lamplighter is the author of The Unexpected Enlightenment of Rachel Griffin, as well as theProspero's Daughter Trilogy.She has also written a number of short stories, articles on anime, and is an author/assistant editor in the BaddAss Faeries series.

Or, show up here at 7:00 PM EST and click the player.

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