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My first short story, “Cornhusker: Demon Gene,” was accepted into a future anthology, but I self published it in May. I have written a handful of short stories over the years, but this one is my favorite, so far. That said, I know I’m still learning this writing gig, so I put this story out there knowing the feedback could be less than glowing.
While I’m grateful for every review, I’m pleased that most people have enjoyed my first story.
Here are some quotes from my reviews:
My first review, by Carl on SF Signal, said,
“Timothy C. Ward has taken that premise to explore the struggles of a young man whose destiny may put him on a path to destruction. As his protagonist Geoffrey balances normal teenage angst against the pain of losing one’s faith, the reader gets to experience standard horror tropes used in a different way. There is a lot of potential revealed in Ward’s debut short story and it will be a pleasure to see where he goes from here.”
REVIEW SUMMARY: The zombie apocalypse has never been more engrossing, heart-wrenching, or personal. I rooted for this hero with held breath.
BRIEF SYNOPSIS: A pair of drug addicts open their window to a zombie apocalypse, run for their lives and fight for what they’ll love more: sober life or death.
PROS: Front-to-back engaging; phenomenal ending; emotionally powerful characters; scary zombies; survivalist setting.
CONS: The sexual descriptions, while consistent with the gory details throughout, were more than this reader preferred.
BOTTOM LINE: Best read of the year. Best zombie book, ever. Masterful illustration about how painful and overwhelming addiction can be – over love, over family, and over being a good human being, even in the face of losing one’s life to a zombie horde.
Read the rest of the review at SF Signal.
Stay tuned for my podcast interview with Peter at Adventures in SciFi Publishing.
I’ve been listening to podcasts since before ebooks became a popular way of making money in publishing, and it almost feels like I’ve missed the boat waiting this long to get my first story out there. However, I’ve seen too many premature self-publishers to value catching a ride on the ebook ark more than waiting until my fiction was ready to publish. “Cornhusker: Demon Gene” is my first short story acceptance, but unlike most short fiction sales, I don’t have to wait for rights to publish it myself. It will be in the Monsters! anthology at some point, so those who want to see it in paper form can get it then.
What is “Cornhusker: Demon Gene” about? Continue reading
Podcast: Play in new window
Welcome to the latest edition of AudioTim, where I get to ask self-published success story, Mark Tufo about his stories and writing career. I will be giving away his latest novel, Callis Rose. All you have to do to enter is share some love on Twitter or Facebook, including my handle @timothycward, or tagging me Tim Ward, on Facebook, with a link to this post. Deadline to enter is one week from Monday, so before February 18.
Highlights of our discussion: Continue reading
As an aspiring author, I feel awful saying this, but as I plot out the books I want to read in 2013, there isn’t much room for new authors. This is one reason I’m taking my time on my debut novel, Kaimerus, because if I don’t have time to endure mediocrity, neither do you. I was a guest panelist on SF Signal Podcast, Episode 171, discussing what I look forward to in 2013, and here’s my side in writing, (and some I didn’t get to mention): Continue reading
I sent in my first contract and final draft of what will be my first published story, “Cornhusker: Demon Gene,” to A Flame in the Dark Magazine, to be published in their Monsters! Anthology, October 31st. The behind the scenes story for this first publication credit is a fun one. When I heard about this anthology, I sent them my zombie novelette, “Small Town Scourge,” which they accepted (my first acceptance!), but were inspired in that story to publish a zombie-specific anthology NEXT fall.
Okay, I thought, what about this fall? They said they had a little more room, and immediately an idea for another story came to mind. I wrote 5k words the next day, and finished it the day after, all with the idea of playing on an emotional pondering about what it would be like to live in the fear that your life would be taken before you hit your prime. As an unpublished author (at that time! ), I often thought about what it would be like to die before I fulfilled my dream of publishing novels. For this story, I took a young man a week from graduating high school, who has a crush on a girl, but doesn’t want to make a move because a gene that he may have inherited, the Demon Gene, could turn him into a monster any day now. I love this story for the emotional roller coaster from hopelessness, to seeing one’s dreams being fulfilled only to have them snatched out from under one’s feet. Continue reading
My recording of Hugh Howey reading his Kindle Single, “The Walk Up Nameless Ridge,” is now up over at SF Signal. I was in his panel at ChiCon7 and recorded most of the story there, but because he ran out of time we had to finish the rest on Skype. I think it turned out great, and it’s another gem from Hugh, so go check it out! If you’d rather read it, it’s only $.99.
The second recording, a panel with him, Robin Sullivan (Ridan Publishing) and Lane Diamond (Evolved Publishing) discussing Kindle Singles, Kindle Serials, and Amazon’s Pre-Order system, will also be hosted on SF Signal (the blog, not the podcast). I’ll let you know when that is up as well. It’s great info for authors, and great news for the short fiction market.
While I’m mentioning indie authors, here are some freebies to check out: Continue reading
I first discovered Michael Montoure last year through his book of short stories, Slices. I was so impressed that I spotlighted individual stories, invited him to do short interviews on them, and for a few, had him read samples. I’m not much of a short story reader, though, so I didn’t end up finishing Slices in order to do a formal review, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t fantastic. Hearing about his new release prompted me to get back into Slices, and I was pleasantly reminded of what I’ve been missing.
Permanent Damage is classic Montoure mind bombs. The stories are grounded smoothly enough in the people and settings so that they are easy to get into, but like a Chinese finger trap, getting out is much harder than you’ll expect. Michael has a fantastic gift in Continue reading