Monday, January 21, 2019

Lightweight returns, exclusively on Patreon!

This Wednesday, the fourth volume of Lightweight stories kicks off with Lightweight 16: Earthbound. This new volume brings Kevin Mathis back to Earth as he finds himself trapped in a game of cat and mouse against perhaps the world's greatest villain! As he seeks to uncover the mystery of how he returned to Earth, he may not live long enough to enjoy it! His very first adventure takes him directly into conflict with the very angry thunder god Thor.

The first tale is available for preorder now and will be available on Smashwords starting in August. But if you want to read the entire series before that date ever comes, the only way to do so is to join the exclusive members of my Patreon.

The new Lightweight tale goes live there on Wednesday for all members at the $2 level or higher, so get in ASAP to make sure you don't miss a second of the new material!

Head to Patreon to get your new Lightweight stories!

And thanks for reading!

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Heavy is the Lightweight! (WIP Wednesday)

The last week or so has been focused completely on Lightweight. I've been working on final edits for Lightweight 16: Earthbound which will go up on Patreon in just a few days. I'm excited to bring this new saga out to the world and hope that it proves as entertaining as I think it is. It's an interesting start to the new volume, the continuance of my favorite series to write and the beginning of a lot more from Lightweight in the years ahead.

Even as I'm putting the final edits on Lightweight 16: Earthbound, I'm wrapping up the final pages of Lightweight 20. This will serve as the penultimate chapter of his return to Earth. These chapters are very much about Kevin finding his path as an adult back on Earth, even as he faces some pretty terrifying villains.

My writing speed is still a bit slower than I would like it to be in the new year, although I've been pushing out a lot of nonfiction specifically at the Wrestling Deep End. Here's hoping I can remedy that in the next couple weeks as I prepare to release a lot more stuff over the course of 2019!

Today's image of a whole lot of weights is by Danielle Cerullo.

Monday, January 7, 2019

2019: A Mission Statement

Today ends the first full week of 2019. And in that week, I've thought about where I wanted this blog to go in the new year.

Much of it I've already talked about in some detail over the last few months. This will be the waypoint to let everyone know exactly what new stories are coming from yours truly in the weeks and months ahead. Most of that focus will be on Patreon, where I'll deliver new stories every couple weeks. But I will also have other appearances pop up this year, with a couple anthology appearances in Pro Se Productions releases for example. I will be posting to Medium every week or two with a new article that might not fit the usual purview of this blog, such as my recent piece on the one year anniversary of learning I faced cancer. Or reminders every now and then when I post a particularly good update to Newer Gods or that Wrestling Deep End still exists for anyone that wants to read my thoughts on the sport of kings.

It will also come with thoughts now and then on the products I'm reading. If you have your ad blocker off for this site (and I appreciate it if you do) you can see the Amazon links to the books, movies, shows and games I'm enjoying right now. I'll add commentary now and then on what I am enjoying.

And I'll still stop in for WIP Wednesday updates as well.

My plan is to continue updating the blog three to five days a week in 2019. But if you want more content, be sure you follow me on Medium, join the Super Powered Fiction group on Facebook, and by subscribing to the newsletter.

So stay tuned for new and different adventures as this year continues and thanks for reading!

Friday, January 4, 2019

Cosplay Friday: Domino

I still haven't seen Deadpool 2 believe it or not, but Zadie Smith as Domino was easily the best choice the film could make. Here the always great Kay Bear brings that version of Domino to life in an equally amazing cosplay!

As always, you can check out a lot more great Cosplay pictures over on the Tumblr. And while you are admiring some great cosplay here, don’t forget to check out some of the other great stuff from yours truly this week!

Thursday, January 3, 2019

New fiction on the Patreon is live!

Yesterday, I debuted Quadrant 6: Star Quadrant to my backers on Patreon. From now until the end of the year, every supporter on the site that invests at least five dollars a month will receive new chapters of Lightweight, Quadrant and Shockwave at least six months before everyone else!

My stories are designed to work as extended standalone chapters that build to a greater whole, and this format allows me to continue to deliver these stories in the increments in which they work best!

It's not too late to get aboard. New patrons can still read every story so far just by pledging their support. Levels for new fiction range from $2 (for just Lightweight) to $7 (for all new content per year plus ebooks of all non-Patreon content as well.)

And if Patreon isn't the platform for you, new stories will start to see the light of day, just months after their publication on the Patreon. Star Quadrant is already available for pre-order on Smashwords for July 2, 2019.

If you love my work, I encourage everyone to go out and make their pledges to the Patreon. Together, we can make 2019 a huge year for Super Powered Fiction!

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Looking back at 2018: the top 5 reads

I wanted to read a lot more novels than I read in 2018, but instead I found much of my reading time spent on research for various projects online. That being said, I still managed to read several great novels in the year and here's a lovely list of my five favorite.

Remember, this is just a list of the favorite books I read in 2018, not necessarily books released in 2018.

  1. Mississippi Roll: A Wild Cards Novel edited by George R. R. Martin

    The new standalone novels in this series are refreshing after multiple heavily connected series and I would honestly prefer they keep that format going forward. I haven't stayed caught up with the follow up novels as of yet, but they are on my radar for 2019.

  2. A Call to Duty by David Weber and Timothy Zahn

    I read several Honor Harrington books in my teens and early twenties, but it has been a series I wanted to dive back into for some time. This first book in a prequel series by Weber and one of my favorite authors, Timothy Zahn, drew my interest enough to jump back in. It proved to be a great read, so much so that the sequel is already done and the final book in the series is in my reading list.

  3. Arsenal: Full Metal Superhero by Jeffrey H. Haskell

    I stumbled upon this one thanks to a buy at my job and I am hooked. Haskell is one of the few supers writers not on my radar but he proved to be a great one with this first book in his ongoing series. I'm definitely interested in seeing where it goes in the follow up novels.

  4. Catwoman: Soulstealer by Sarah J. Maas

    I talked about this one just a few days ago, but Maas has the clear winner in licensed superhero novels this year. She weaves an amazing new take on Gotham centered around Selina Kyle, one I would love to see more of in the future.

  5. The Oracle Year by Charles Soule

    Charles Soule has written his share of superhero comics, but his literary take on the tale of a man with a limited set of future visions proved to be the most fascinating read I completed in the calendar year. I'm curious to see what the future holds for his prose career. 

Buy them on Amazon:

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Looking back at 2018: my top ten comic series of the year

It's been a strange year as I mostly stopped buying comics by the first of it and have started buying a few more later in the year. But I've found several books that have proven themselves month in and month out as great material. Some of these are limited series, though most are ongoing, but none have planned runs under twelve issues. I overlooked a few limited series (Justice League: No Justice, Batman: Creature of the Night, Bloodstrike: Brutalists) for this reason.

  1. Avengers: Marvel's new team by Jason Aaron, Ed McGuinness and Paco Medina gathers the company's heavy hitters with some unique new blood (Robbie Reyes!) to spark my interest. Aaron, much like another writer on another tentpole series on this list, is really going heavy into universal mythology with this series and gives us an epic opening gambit. It will be interesting to see if he can maintain that level of quality over any length of time. 
  2. Tony Stark: Iron Man: Dan Slott probably should have been off Spider-Man and on Iron Man a few years back. His style seems a natural fit for Tony and his expanded cast of Stark employees has created for an interesting series, even if it doesn't feel as monumental as the other Marvel titles on this list. 
  3. The Silencer: Dan Abnett's post-Metal addition to the DC Universe seems to be the one with the most staying power. Connections to the Morrison-created Leviathan organization and Talia as a cast member probably doesn't hurt its chances. But it's great storytelling with a unique character in an unusual situation that makes the book stand out from the rest.
  4. Scooby-Doo Team-Up: I won't lie and say every issue is a gem, but the DC crossovers in this book may offer the most fun DC Comics in a decade. Sholly Fisch is ready and willing to dig through the DC catalog to make some fascinating tales with obscure characters, perhaps most exemplified by appearances from Swamp Thing and ever DC ape character this year.
  5. Justice League: Scott Snyder's run kicked off well with No Justice, but his ongoing series has cemented a DC Universe far more interesting than it has been since the days of 52. With a top tier art team and an editorial team ready to let him shape the path of the DCU, if DC stays the course they could have an amazing title for years to come. 
  6. Immortal Hulk: The big surprise for me was this one. Joe Bennett isn't an artist I care for often, but he's putting in great work on this new series with writer Al Ewing. The new book takes Hulk on a supernatural bent even as Bruce Banner has to deal with the fact that his changes now come with his repeated death. It's definitely a new take on the character and one that I cannot wait to see where it leads.
  7. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Tom Waltz's tale of the four ninja brothers has remained one of the most consistently entertaining comics for several years. While the year seemed a bit mired in the ongoing struggle with Rat King, the series continues to do new and interesting things with the characters and creating a new legacy for them I hope to see continue for years to come. 
  8. Deathstroke: Few books have made it from Rebirth to now without a new writer hopping aboard. Of the few that have, none have remained as consistent as Priest's work on Deathstroke. But perhaps most amazingly, he does it by re-inventing the assassin's life every six months or so. It makes for one of the most unexpected series I thought I would see from DC and proves just how good Priest is as comics writer.
  9. Doomsday Clock: I won't lie. I expected to hate Geoff Johns and Gary Frank's crossover sequel to Watchmen. Instead I've been intrigued for page after page. The book's new additions to the Watchmen Earth drive the series forward, even as it also exposes the dark secrets of the origins of DC's own heroes and villains. It's a compelling read, but I remain curious exactly how it will change the DCU going forward.
  10. Venom: I liked the movie quite a bit. But I loved the new comic. Ryan Stegman is an amazing artist but I never read a Donny Cates book before this series. Now he's a name I check out, because he shows a willingness to think so far outside the box without disrupting the continuity already established. The dark secrets of the symbiotes come out as this series begins, and it only gets more wild from there. Eddie Brock versus a cosmic level threat turns out to be the most brilliant storytelling ploy I never expected. Amazing work by all involved. 

That's my list. If you told me it would be so Marvel-centric I'd probably have laughed at you. But so it goes as both Marvel and DC proved they could still do great comics in 2018.

I'd love to hear your own in the comments! What were the best and brightest series for you in the last year?