got me a gen-u-wine series now, i guess.

This is the color version of the current Amazon Kindle screensaver ad for the Frontlines series. I’m biased, of course, but I think it looks massively cool. Can’t be long now before I have enough books out for a boxed Frontlines set…



Yes, there are indeed a million ways to die in the Frontlines universe. And I have listed them all alphabetically and then again by embarrassment factor in the appendices of Angles of Attack!

(The cover art is done by Marc Simonetti, by the way.)

“angles of attack” giveaway.

There’s an Angles of Attack giveaway at Goodreads right now. If you’d like to put in your name for a free copy, you should head on over there and do the thing with the click and the stuff. The giveaway runs until April 21st, which is the official release day of Angles of Attack:

I get a box of author copies as is customary with most book contracts, and the one for Angles of Attack arrived yesterday:

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I don’t care how many books I’ll write in the future—opening that box and looking at the printed version for the first time is never going to get old. I feel like nerdy George McFly at the end of Back to the Future every time. You know, that scene where he gets his author copies of “A Match Made In Space”?


I’m still extremely busy writing “Chains of Command”, Frontlines #4, so you can all get it on your Kindles and eye-pods and eight-tracks and what-not before Christmas. It’s shaping up to be a really fun ride, and I think you’ll enjoy it. It is my personal opinion that Angles of Attack is the best Frontlines yet, and that Chains of Command may turn out even better. But I am, of course, heavily biased.

frontlines the fourth.

Great news, people of Earth!

Contracts are signed, so I am free to share the news.

1.) There will officially be a fourth Frontlines novel.
2.) It will be called “Chains of Command”.
3.) If all goes well, it will be out THIS YEAR, which means you’ll get two new Frontlines novels in 2015. (Angles of Attack will be released on April 15th, and Chains of Command has a tentative release date of November if all goes according to plan and I don’t overshoot my deadline WHICH I WON’T, HONEST.)

So there you have it. 47North has bought Frontlines #4, “Chains of Command”, and I am doing my best to get it to you before this holiday season so you can all put it on your Christmas Kindles. 

frontlines UK sale.

If you live in the UK, you may be interested in the current Amazon UK deal, which has forty novels discounted to one of your English pounds of currency. Terms of Enlistment and Lines of Departure are included in that deal, so if you don’t have your own copies yet, here’s a chance to get them at half the regular price. One measly pound! Why that won’t buy you a…. uh, whatever it is that costs two quid over there. The sale will go on through the month of February.

Also, I’ll have some EXCITING NEWS to share regarding the Frontlines series pretty soon. (No, not a movie deal. No, not a Literature Nobel nomination.) I’ll need to let the ink dry and get the official word before I blab, though.


how to story, in sixty seconds.

Yeah, it’s a commercial for a beer, but it’s also a perfect master class in storytelling. Setting, characterization, conflict/motivation, peril, emotional climax, satisfying resolution, denouement. Themes: friendship, loyalty, love. All squeezed into one minute. Not a second is wasted on anything that doesn’t drive the narrative.This is how you do Story.

obligatory 2014 recap.

I really like it when I type up an end-of-year retrospective blog post and find that I really didn’t have a damn thing to complain about in the past twelve months.

2013 was great. 2014 was even better by every measurable metric except for the fact that I didn’t get to see my family in person again this past year. Other than that, things have continued to go swimmingly here at the Castle Frostbite Magic Daycare & Novel Factory. I had a novel published in January (Lines of Departure), and both Frontlines novels have continued to sell exceedingly well all year. Robin quit her job in the spring to stay at home and be my support staff full-time, and we find that we both really enjoy this arrangement, because MY GOD WHO WOULDN’T. I am keenly aware just how damn lucky I am that my writing can support a family of four when most writers I know have day jobs and often spouses with day jobs. THANK YOU, old and new readers, for buying all these books, because it means I don’t have to do anything else to fill the pantry, and I’ll get to crank out more books more often.

I got to do a writing retreat with friends for a week down in North Carolina, which was a booze-soaked week of fun and a nice tribal gathering of sorts. I went to Boskone in February and Readercon in August, both local cons where I get to hang out with friends and recharge the social capacitors. Then I got to do my first ComicCon in October in NYC, which was a lot of fun and also a little overwhelming, but mostly awesome. I signed books, met new fans, and connected with old and new friends.

(Side note: sipping cocktails on your publisher’s dime while chatting with your writer pals at midnight just a few blocks away from Times Square will definitely serve to make you feel like a REEL WRITUR for a little while.)

Also in October, I got to hold a little talk at the Army Chief of Staff’s Strategic Studies Group down in Washington, D.C., and that was certainly a novel experience. It went very well, the SSG fellows seemed to enjoy my stay, and I found that a.) I’m not bad at talking to a room full of people for a few hours, and b.) I want to do this sort of stuff more often. Like a reading or a signing, it’s a public performance of sorts, and even though I am an introvert, I enjoy having to switch on the performing persona for a limited and predictable amount of time. My convention dance card isn’t full yet for 2015, but I am leaving myself room on the schedule for a BEEG EEMPORTANT RESEARCH TREEP sometime in the second half of 2015. I will, however, be at Readercon in Burlington, MA in July just like every year, and I’ll be an adjunct instructor at the Paradise Lost workshop in San Antonio in April.

So, yeah–2014 was all sorts of sweet, especially on the professional front. I hope 2015 continues the trend. I’ll have another novel out on April 21, and there’s enough stuff in the works right now that it’s possible you may see another novel from me in 2015. Let’s see how it goes.

I hope your 2014 was a good one, and if it wasn’t, may 2015 crank the Awesome to 11 for you. Happy New Year to all of you.

invasion! der! sterne!


There’s a cover for the German-language edition of Terms of Enlistment! And a release date: June 15, 2015, from Heyne. Here’s the link to the German Amazon page.)

They shortened Andrew’s name to “Andy” and took some creative license with the title. (“Invasion of the Stars”, presumably to sound Star Wars-y. The German name for the Star Wars franchise is “Krieg der Sterne”.) The blurb for the book is also a little fuzzy on some of the plot details unless the translator did some major surgery on the story. But hey–German translation, from one of the major names in German publishing. This is sort of a big deal for me.

(In other news, I still really dig Marc Simonetti’s capital ship design on the cover of Terms of Enlistment. It’s not quite the way I had pictured any of the ships in my head, but it’s so cool that I find this design popping up in my head when I write about the NAC warships now.)

you should totally support this anthology.

I’m a big fan of crowd-funded fiction anthologies. In fact, my second professional fiction sale ever was to a crowd-funded anthology, Alex Shvartsman’s “Unidentified Funny Objects”. (That was the short story “Cake Whores From Mars”, written on a dare from Chuck Wendig, and a crowd favorite at readings.) The UFO sale was a major motivation boost for me at the time, so I’ll always have a warm and fuzzy feeling when it comes to SF/F anthologies.

Allow me therefore to draw your attention to just such a crowd-funded SF/F anthology. This one is called “Athena’s Daughters: Women in Sci-Fi & Fantasy Vol.2”. My good friend and fellow Viable Paradise XII alum Tiffani Angus has a short story in there, and if the anthology has writers of Tiff’s caliber in it, I can assure you that it will be worth the money. Go check it out and see if it’s something you may want to drop some coin on, and support some great up-and-coming writing talent.

Athenas Daughters 2

audiobook review: “terms of enlistment”.

There’s a pretty sweet review of the audio version of Terms of Enlistment over at Audio Book Reviewer. You should go check it out.

The audio version of the third Frontlines book is currently in production, from what I hear. I am really happy with the work of Luke Daniels, who read the first two books for Audible, and I hope they managed to rope him in for the third book as well.

(I’ve also seen some of the preliminary cover images for Angles of Attack, and I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that they look pretty frickin’ sweet. I think this cover may turn out to be the coolest in the series yet. I’ll share as soon as I am allowed.)

I’m always happy when I turn in a finished book, but it’s also kind of a sucky phase–I’ve done all the work, and now I have to wait for everyone else to do their magic, and things are out of my hands and no longer in my control until the book is released. Luckily, I can keep myself busy by going full speed ahead on the next book.