Tuesday, June 21, 2011

A couple of quick updates

I've had a good run on submissions for the last few weeks, placing three stories and getting a couple of rejections.

So here's a quick update on where things stand for some of my upcoming works:

Vengeance. This will be part of Static Movement's Serve in Heaven, Reign in Hell anthology. I signed and returned the contract a while ago and believe the book just wrapped up editing and has been sent off. It will be available very soon.

Summary: Calvin Collins is a nobody, a low-level hood with friends in low places--the perfect police informant. Double-crossed by two detectives he foolishly trusted, Calvin gets three bullets in the chest and an all-expenses-paid trip to Hell. There, he faces a choice: a painful, fiery afterlife or the chance to get even. But in order to avenge his death, he must first become Vengeance, a being of pure, dark energy who serves an even darker master.

Gus and Mariel. I signed and returned the contract for this story over the weekend. Editing is in the final stages and we should see this one very soon as part of Library of the Living Dead Press' Attack of the 50-Foot Book anthology.

Summary: Gus, a puffin who spent his whole life in captivity, falls in love with a bird named Mariel who arrives from the outside world. When she is taken away, Gus escapes and stumbles into radioactive goo that transforms him into a towering puffin the size of a building. Determined to reunite with his lost love, he unwittingly unleashes a trail of destruction across the United States.

Sparky Save the World. The contract for this one came this weekend and I have returned it. The table of contents is set, the stories have been edited, and we're waiting on the final cover art before it goes to press. I expect to see the Live and Let Undead anthology before the end of the month.

Summary: Harris and his bomb-sniffing partner Sparky work to stop biological weapons and other dangers from going through the nation's ports. Trained to detect hazardous materials, Sparky--an UNDEAD (UNnaturally DE-evolved Anthropological Degenerate) who used to be human--proves his ultimate worth when confronted with a massive, potentially catastrophic weapons shipment.

And the World Stopped. I did a lot of (electronic) contract signing this weekend! This is for the Told You So anthology of conspiracy stories from Pill Hill Press. Submissions just closed this week, so this will need to go through editing and all that. It will probably be a few months on this one.

Summary: When the world's super-powered heroes and villains suddenly lose their awe-inspiring abilities, Night Wasp gets an unexpected call from the Heroic Legion to investigate. The vigilante's uncompromising effort uncovers a deep, wide-ranging conspiracy reaching to the highest levels and pitting him against his own government.

Harrigan the Magnificent. No contract is signed for this one, although the story has been accepted. This story will likely need some editing, as it's part of a shared universe and the timelines from different stories will have to sync up. Timid Pirate Publishing plans to release this in September.

Summary: Strange psychic messages draw Harrigan to a sinister circus where children disappear in the wake of the grand finale. Determined to save the victims, the luckless antihero confronts the dark mistress behind the behind the plot and stumbles across an unexpected, bittersweet destiny.

Old-Fashioned Police Work. Strange, Weird, and Wonderful accepted this short story, which is due for the Fall 2011 issue. I'll share bylines with a writing buddy of mine, the esteemed R.J. Sullivan. I haven't gotten the contract for this one yet.

Summary: After the police department hires a contingent of super-powered rookies, a veteran officer learns he'll soon be forced into early retirement. As he contemplates his career options, he and the rooks confront a string of robberies that only a little old-fashioned police work can solve.

I currently only have two other projects I'm waiting to hear about. One has been held by the editors, with the submission deadline set for the end of July. I sent the other story back in December, but the editor tells me we'll hear next week about acceptances/rejections.