My new novel, “Bad Luck,” is now available for pre-order on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and most other places where books are sold. You can order it in both hardcover or paperback, or eBook, if you prefer.
The teaser for my upcoming novel, “Bad Luck,” is now here! Just follow the link in the menu above.
Bad Luck is the first novel of a new “Simon Kane” Urban Fantasy series. The first two chapters are now available for you to read here on this site. Go and read it and enjoy.
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Here is a little bit of flash fiction I wrote a while ago. It was going to be part of a bigger story, but it never happened. If you all like it, I might manage to finish it:
Jim Powers stretched, reaching his arms outward and arching his back. He was tired, but he had to fight off sleep. There was work to do. A light rain began to fall, the cold droplets finding their way through the maze of conifers that formed a canopy over Jim’s head and creating a gentle chorus as they pattered around him.
Good, he thought. That’ll keep me awake.
He glanced around the small clearing. At midnight, his camp was engulfed in darkness, but the moon, near full, forced some of its light through the clouds to cast an eerie glow over the ground. The mist had rolled in, covering the ground in a two-foot layer of thick fog. His tent sat alone, rising like a bright green pyramid out of the mist. The rain bounced off it, pattering louder.
And then there was the tree stump. The five-foot-tall stump of a small tree had been ripped, roots and all, from the ground and shoved back into the hole upside down. Of course, Jim had not done that. It would have taken several men with a backhoe to accomplish what something had apparently done with bare hands. He smiled at it.
There’s my evidence. A Sasquatch had been here and had marked its territory.
That’s why Jim was there. He and his team had come to the Nahanni National Park in Canada to find evidence of the mysterious creature known as Bigfoot. And there, in the clearing where he stood, they had seen it. The tree stump had been ripped from the ground by an animal, but only by an animal with two hands and inhumanly massive strength.
They had taken pictures, of course, and searched it for hair samples, of which they found some. Then, Jim made camp there, while the rest of the team moved onward, setting camp about a quarter mile away.
He took out his walkie talkie and put it to his mouth.
“Team Two. This is Team One. Over.”
This was met by static coming out the little speaker.
Jim frowned. “Team Two. This is Team One. Respond.”
“Come on, guys! Pick up.”
When there was still no response, he sighed. “Whatever.” They’re not paying attention. Well, I’ll give ‘em something to think about.
“Okay, if you can hear this, I’m going to try some tree knocking and see what happens.”
He clipped the walkie talkie to his belt and searched around for a nice strong stick. Hefting a long, fallen tree limb, he examined it. It was recently fallen and had not begun to rot. It seemed strong enough.
“This’ll do,” he said to himself as he walked over to a tree on the edge of the clearing. Before swinging, he lifted the sound recorder that dangled on a lanyard around his neck and turned it on.
“May 17, 2019. Nahanni National Park. 12:07 am. Trying some tree knocking to elicit a response.” He let the recorder dangle and raised the stick.
Taking up his best batter’s pose, he breathed in deeply, exhaled and swung hard. The stick struck the tree with a loud crack that reverberated throughout the forest. The limb held strong.
Jim paused to listen. He expected his friends to check if the noise came from him, but the walkie-talkie remained silent. He also didn’t hear any Sasquatch.
He grimaced and tried again, this time hitting harder. The impact rattled his arms, and it hurt a little, but the stick didn’t break.
Far off in the distance, perhaps a mile or two off to the east, he thought he heard a return call. Another tree knock, first one and then another, repeating his pattern.
That was not the direction of Team Two. This was something new.
Encouraged by the response, he banged out the pattern again, first one, then the other with increasing strength. On the second swing, the stick had had enough. With a loud crack, it broke in two, sending the far end hurtling into the trees.
Jim held up the stick to inspect it. It was now only two feet long with a jagged, broken end.
He grinned. “Oh well. It was worth it.”
In the distance, he heard the responding knocks, again repeating his pattern.
Now to get a vocalization.
He cupped his hands around his mouth, inhaled, and …
The sound of cracking branches came from behind him, followed by heavy footfalls entering the clearing.
Another Sasquatch? It didn’t respond to the tree knocking because it was nearby. That made sense. He stood still, listening intently. If he turned around, he might spook it.
The newcomer stepped closer, and Jim sighed with disappointment.
Four-legged. A bear? A moose?
Now it was important to turn around.
He spun about, slowly, holding the stick down, so as not to antagonizes the bear.
Then, he froze. His jaw gaped, and his eyes went wide in terror.
“Oh my God …”
The intruder lunged.
Strong-willed Perpugilliam Atwood, a witch living among Muggles in 19th-Century London, goes to work at the Ministry of Magic as though it were any other day. But she’s thrust into a mission to Egypt to help break the curses surrounding the ruins of an ancient city, and remove any magical artifact before the Muggles find them. In a team with Aurors, a curse breaker, and a man from the Department of Mysteries, Perpugilliam must keep her wits about her as they encounter political upheaval, fantastic beasts, and the attention of a dashing wizard archaeologist who threatens to whisk her off her feet. But their arrival at the ancient city reveals a mystery that could spell doom for them all.
The Wand and The Scepter is a Wizarding World of J.K. Rowling fan fiction novel. It will be released on Wattpad.com before long.
Come one and all to Wattpad to read my new novel, The Wand and The Scepter. It’s a fun novel about a witch who goes on an adventure to Egypt in the 1860’s to search for a lost city and gets more than she bargained for. The book has action, mystery, suspense, romance, and enough Harry Potter-ish wonder to make anyone happy.
Find it Here
Get an Account and Use Website or App
You need to have an account on Wattpad to read the book, but it’s free and easy to do. Just go to http://wattpad.com and create an account. Then, you can either search for me, Brad Younie, or for The Wand and The Scepter and start reading.
If you are unfamiliar with Wattpad, you can either read books using the website or get the app for your phone or tablet.
It’s a Serial!
As is normal on Wattpad, the book is being added in serial format, with one chapter being added each week. I will post every Friday afternoon, without fail.
Follow, Library, and Vote
You can follow the book to get notifications when new chapters are added and when existing chapters are updated.
Add the book to your Library to have easy access to it.
And, of course, Vote for each chapter. Voting is just a toggle, so it’s the same as Liking. If you like the chapter, then vote on it to let me know.
Most of all, have fun with the book. I had a blast writing it, and I hope you have a blast reading.
Because I’m attention span challenged, I am always working on more than one writing project at a time. I try to keep the number of projects limited to a reasonable number, and not start anything new until one of my in-progress novels is complete. This worked, I believed for a long time, because sometimes I would be in the mood to edit, while other times I’d be in the mood to write.
Well, I’ve come to a realization: when given the choice between writing and editing, I choose writing 100% of the time. As a result, I have four novels that are first draft complete and waiting to be edited. Of those, I’m editing one. I recently came up with a wonderful setting concept for a new novel, and I’m anxious to get to work on it. But I’ve decided enough is enough. I’ll take down notes on it, and do some thinking about it, but I refuse to write a single word of prose until all my works-in-progress are complete.
So, I will be in editing mode for the foreseeable future. But it’s all good because, in the end, I’ll have four books ready to get published!
I’m currently on the final pass of my Wizarding World fan-fiction novel The Wand and The Scepter. Once that is complete and being posted on Wattpad, I’ll move to my Urban Fantasy novel, Bad Luck.
The process for getting the cover done was smooth, and Gordon Napier was a great artist. The finished product is fantastic, as you can see, but I was very impressed with his professionalism and the regular updates he gave me, each time asking for my thoughts and concerns.
The cover represents a scene from the novel. For spoiler prevention, I will not go into detail about the scene, but I will say a few things about the cover.
This is pretty much what I envisioned Perri to look like. She’s the protagonist of the novel and is a Wizarding world witch in the 1800’s. So, she’s sporting a Victorian style dress underneath her red wizard’s robe. I never had a clear image of her face, save for the brown hair and brown eyes, but Gordon’s representation is spot on.
The background looks fantastic, and both exciting and eerie at the same time. Of course, in the novel, the creepy-crawlies do not climb on the walls, but it looks great in the image.
I’m in what I believe to be the home stretch in my preparations for posting my Wizarding World fan fiction novel on Wattpad.com. This phase has three parts to it: the cover art, chapter illustrations, and editing.
The cover art itself is done! My thanks to the fantastic Gordon Napier (http://dashinvaine.co.uk/) for painting a scene that’s far better than I could have pictured in my mind. He was professional and easy to work with. I now have the fun of working out the title and author text, which is coming along nicely.
Thanks to the excellent Kelly Bennett for contributing an illustration for each chapter heading. She has delivered art for the first two chapters and is working on the next. They are amazing!
Finally, I’m working on an editing pass of the novel. For this pass, I’m making use of AutoCrit, which I’m pretty impressed with. It’s moving along but is taking longer than I expected. Still, it’s worthwhile, and there’s no need to rush the project.
I first read Deryni Rising back in the 70’s when I was in Junior High. It became one of my favorite fantasy novels, and I have looked back fondly at it ever since. I remember wanting to be Kelson Haldane. Well, maybe not King Kelson, but a Deryni like him. I remember how Katherine Kurtz managed to bring the complex, yet colorful setting alive and pull me into the story, where I felt like I was wandering the halls of Rhemuth Castle alongside Morgan, Duncan, Kelson, and the other many characters in the book.
Lately, I have stepped up my game as a writer. I’m now in a writer’s group, and I have written—an am writing—several novels. I’m immersed in editing most of them at this point. I’m in a frame of mind where I look at the books I read from an editor’s perspective, letting me see the stories in a way I’ve never seen them before.
I reread Deryni Rising recently, and I discovered something both fascinating and wonderful. I figured out how the esteemed Katherine Kurtz let the reader look inside each character’s head without it becoming confused or chaotic.
In one scene, I was in the head of Alaric Morgan, one of the books main characters, and I was fully aware of the stress he was under and the urgency of his work. Then, Queen Jehana stormed into the room and began shouting at him. As it happened, I was inside Morgan’s head and experienced the argument through his perspective.
Then Jehana turned on her heel and left the room…
And I followed.
With the ending of the argument and the physical change of the Queen leaving the room, I had switched perspective and was now marching down the castle hallway, trying to keep up with Jehana as her mind seethed over the dispute. I heard what she was thinking and I understood her point of view—even though I didn’t agree with it. She went through a doorway and had a heated conversation with Prince Nigel—she was always angry throughout the novel.
And when she left Nigel, she left me as well. I stayed behind in Nigel’s room and head.
This technique was brilliant because it not only accomplished the necessary task of keeping the reader abreast of what was going on, and what everyone was thinking, but it actually pulled me into the story, where I felt like I was there walking beside them. When they had inner dialog, it was as though they were talking to me.
I think it was this subtle means of perspective shifting that helped make the book so magical for me—beyond the intriguing characters, fantastic yet realistic setting, and suspenseful plot.
Deryni Rising was not one of the first fantasy novels I ever read, but it has stood the test of time to remain always one of my favorites. And now, it has taught me how to handle stories that involve a large ensemble cast—something I was hesitant to attempt, but am now looking forward to.
I started writing when I was in fifth grade. One day, my teacher, Mr. Chris, put an open box of index cards on the corner of his desk. He told us to come up, one by one, and take a card. On each card was a single sentence, like “On a sunny Saturday morning, David went for a walk.”
We were all confused about our cards until Mr. Chris explained.
“The index card you hold in your hand contains the first sentence of a short story you will write. It’s due on Friday.” He gave some rules on what can and cannot be in them, then lectured about story writing. I was still scared about the project when I left the class that day, but once I sat down to write, a story just popped into my head, and the words flowed from my pencil. I had the first draft written the same day.
The next morning, I showed it to my old second grade teacher, all excited. She took out Old Red and marked it up. You see, my story had our hero run into trouble with some street punks, who tried to rough him up. To be believable, they had to talk badly (“You ain’t getting’ outta here now”). She didn’t get it, and assumed that I just didn’t know my grammar. I stubbornly copied it over to a clean sheet of paper and submitted it to Mr. Chris, “ain’ts” and all. I got an A+.
You’re never too young to start writing. As soon as you get an idea in your head, write it down. It could be a whole story, or even just a retelling of something that happened to you. What you write about doesn’t matter. What’s important is that you write. Keeping a diary or journal is a good start.
PS: The “bad language” I used wasn’t profane. It was just bad grammar, and it was only in dialogue. The bad guys in the story spoke like they never went to school in their lives, but the narrator and Our Hero spoke quite nicely indeed.