Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Review of Steampunk'd

Excellent review of Steampunk'd.

I love reading reviews like this one. It made my already excellent day.

Paul Genesse
Author of The Nubian Queen in Steampunk'd, edited by Jean Rabe and Martin Greenburg

Friday, November 18, 2011

Fully crafted characters podcast


New podcast on crafting characters. I was on Dungeon Crawlers Radio. It's primarily a gaming podcast, but the principles work for novels too. Check it out here:

Paul Genesse
Editor of The Crimson Pact

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The First Church of Digital Salvation

I’ve joined a new church. It’s called: The First Church of the Digital Salvation, and I first heard about it from the eVangelist himself, New York Times bestselling author Michael Stackpole, while I was at the recent World Fantasy Convention (San Diego, California 2011). Okay, so it’s not really a religious movement, but a publishing one. The paradigm of book publishing is shifting, and though I want to be part of the traditional model, I’m going to pursue the new one as well.

Don’t get me wrong, I do want some of my books to be in every bookstore in America and have one of the big publishers behind me, but a large part of the future is going to be ePublishing. I’ve already experimented with ePublishing with The Crimson Pact series that I’m editing, and soon (December 2011) my Iron Dragon series will be available as eBooks (as well as hard copies).

Part of my final conversion was because of a wonderful and long chat with two authors, K.W. Jeter, (also a member of the Church of Digital Salvation) and Michael Stackpole--the founder. Mr. Jeter is the guy famous for coining the term “steampunk” in addition to writing New York Times bestselling books.

The gist of what K.W. Jeter said to me is now online in a fascinating guest blog he wrote on Dean Wesley Smith’s blog. The link is at the end of this post.

One of the big take home points that Mr. Jeter made to me is this: traditional publishing is very frustrating to most authors. The process of writing a book often takes a year, then it takes a year for the literary agent to read it and sell it (the editor at the publisher doesn’t get back to the agent for a year quite often), then it takes two years (sometimes only one if you’re lucky) for the book to come out. Almost all books then go out of print, leaving the author even more frustrated.

There are also layers and layers of people at the publishing house who have to sign off on a project. The nature of the publishing industry is just slow and soul crushing for most people.

It doesn't have to be that way anymore. The eBook revolution has changed the rules and the whole paradigm is shifting.

Near the end of our talk, Mr. Jeter looked at me with some envy and said that I could go through most of my career without having to endure the pain that he and so many other authors have endured. I've already experienced my share of pain with traditional publishing, and the eBook revolution has given me new hope for the future.

K.W. Jeter gives a lot of great insights in his blog post on the eBook revolution, and read it here:

Happy writing and reading.

Paul Genesse
Member of The First Church of Digital Salvation
Editor of The Crimson Pact anthology series

The Founders of Steampunk


Hello Friends,

I attended a fascinating panel at the 2011 World Fantasy Convention held in San Diego, California: “The Founders of Steampunk.”

This was a very historic event, and fortunately, Moses Siregar, author extraordinaire, filmed it with the consent of the panelists. (linked at the end of this post)

This panel featured :

K.W. Jeter, James Blaylock, and Tim Powers.

John Berlyne served as the moderator. He's not a founder of steampunk, but is an expert on Tim Powers and wrote a book about Tim's works. He's also worked as a literary agent.

Here are a few notes I made during the panel and tidbits I wanted to share with all of you.

K.W. Jeter coined the term “steampunk” and he did so in 1987 in a letter to Locus Magazine.

Jeter, Blaylock and Powers were all students at Cal State Fullerton in 1969. They discovered Henry Mayhew’s book about London called, “London Labor London Poor,” which is a treasure trove of information on the Victorian era and the best research book on London ever. (Print copies are available for purchase online or you can find it as a free download—I’m not sure where, sorry).

Jeter, Blaylock, and Powers would each call dibs on specific parts of “London Labor London Poor” for their stories. The book has all the linguistic idioms of the times. There’s also a “London Underworld” book by Mayhew they mentioned as well, and it’s available as well.

My favorite quotes from the panel:

“We weren’t hampered by knowledge” (about science). “Any revision of history that we do is accidental, as we don’t know anything about the real history.” Tim Powers

“Imaginary science is better and more fun than real science.” K.W. Jeter

“Anubis Gates is a complete fake as far as steampunk.” Tim Powers (author of Anubis Gates)

“Homunculus (by James Blaylock 1986) and Infernal Devices (by K.W. Jeter 1987) are perfect steampunk.” Tim Powers *Side note, the sequel to Infernal Devices is coming out from Tor Books in 2013.

View the video of the panel here:


Paul Genesse
Editor of The Crimson Pact anthology series

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Spellbound Book II of the Grimnoir Chronicles by Larry Correia


Hi Friends,

Here's a review of Spellbound, a "grim" noir superhero novel set in an alternate history 1920's Earth. I love the first one and they put a blurb from me on the back of the book.

Paul Genesse
Editor of The Crimson Pact anthology series

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Review of Monster Hunter Alpha by Larry Correia


Review of Monster Hunter Alpha by Larry Correia

Werewolves are awesome, and the coolest werewolf character I’ve ever read about is Earl Shackleford. He goes by Earl “Harbinger” now, and he’s in charge of the monster hunting company, Monster Hunter International (MHI) in New York Times bestselling author Larry Correia’s uber cool urban fantasy world that mirrors our own.

I’m so glad Correia gave Earl his own book, Monster Hunter Alpha, as Earl was an important and mysterious, but secondary character in Monster Hunter International and Monster Hunter Vendetta—both excellent novels. In this third installment of the New York Times bestselling Monster Hunter franchise we get to learn more about Earl’s background, partly through fascinating journal entries, and we get to see how bad ass werewolves really are.

Earl’s tough, and since he’s nigh immortal, he’s been around since before World War I, he has a lot of experience to draw upon—though he’s only in control of his curse and the moon madness for part of the month. His life is exciting, deadly, and never boring when he decides to take a vacation. That’s what he tells the gang at MHI. In truth, he’s found out that his arch nemesis has surfaced, a Russian werewolf named Nikolai who Earl last battled in the jungles of Viet Nam. Armed with little information—and a truck full of guns and silver bullets—our monster hunting hero (who keep in mind is also a monster) is drawn to a middle of nowhere town in the frozen wilds of Michigan’s upper peninsula during a harsh blizzard.

A whole town of innocent people is attacked when an ancient artifact, buried in a mine near the town for decades, is finally located by a very devious villain—whose identity is secret for most of the book. Monster Hunter Alpha starts fast, and the story evolves a little more slowly after that, but like almost all great horror novels, the set-up pays huge dividends later.

Earl is assisted not by his crew from MHI, (Owen Pitt and the gang will have other books, don’t worry) but by the town’s deputy sheriff, Heather Kerkonen, a red head with a lot of fight in her who is related to the Norwegian guy who found the amulet and buried it in the mine long ago. She’s a well drawn character and a perfect compliment to Earl. The two of them form the core of the book and let me tell you, this would make a great movie or TV series. I think the dialogue alone is a screenwriter’s dream and Correia writes very cinematic scenes with everything you’d want in a movie, or a great book.

Monster Hunter Alpha is a top-notch urban fantasy action-horror novel with great thrills, chills, dark humor, and serious carnage. BIG GUNS, cool characters, many werewolf on werewolf battles, horrifying monsters, and a snowplow scene that you will never forget mark this as a killer book. It’s a lot of entertainment for $7.99, and the story builds to a truly amazing climax at the end that made me smile and wish for the next volume, Monster Hunter Legion.

Paul Genesse
Editor of The Crimson Pact Series