creative writing, fiction, Kindle Scout, Novels, Philip K. Dick, Science Fiction

Red Seven: A Novel in Search of a Home

When it comes to self-promotion, I tend to be a bit shy in that respect. I suppose such an admission is an anathema to publishers everywhere. So, in an effort to change that, I am writing with the hope that you, dear reader, will hop on over to Amazon and view my latest campaign, Red Seven, in the Kindle Scout arena.

Here’s a synopsis:

Police invade the home of Professor Kevin Burch, and charge him with domestic terrorism. His crime?Attending a rally denouncing the election of an American president bent on stripping away liberty and redefining what it means to be patriotic. Burch gets shipped to an internment camp where he witnesses the systematic eradication of falsely charged men like him. When  he is transferred to a “reintegration camp,” Burch meets his torturer and the real trouble begins.

If you’re into science fiction and alternate history in the vein of The Man in the High Castle or Nineteen Eighty-four, you will enjoy the sample. Also, if my novel gets picked up by Amazon you receive a free Kindle copy as away of thanks for nominating me.

Thank you for taking time to read my shameless self-promotion. Happy writing!


books, Horror

Hungry like the Hydatid: A Review of Nick Cutter’s The Troop

I have found a novel that creeps me out almost as much as The Stand did decades ago when I was a teen. Nick Cutter’s The Troop is that book. Nick Cutter, in case you’re interested, is a pen name for writer Craig Davidson. 

For the most part, the characters are fleshed out enough. What’s intriguing about this novel is that Cutter intersperses news and magazine articles, blog posts, transcripts, other tidbits to help propel the reader along. Where this method fell short for me so far is in finding out how many of the characters survive their ordeal (spoiler alert: not many). 

The story centers around a small group of boys and their Scoutmaster on a camping trip in the Canadian wilderness. Throw in a diabolical scientist, a genetically engineered product of secret research, a vile nasty that causes its victims to become insatiably hungry before their hosts consume themselves, and the natural elements of the wilderness, and Cutter provides all the fixings for a horrorific tale.

If I have one fault with the characterization so far (better than three-quarters of the way through the novel), it is the way Cutter provides a seemingly cardboard cutout of a police chief and his bully son. Such characterizations have become a trope of sorts; one, sadly, we have seen again and again. Still, the rest of the boys and Tim the Scoutmaster round out a rather convincing cast.

Cutter acknowledges Stephen King and his novel Carrie as being “a great inspiration” in his writing. It becomes apparent while reading the novel where King’s influence has left its mark. 

The Troop is one of those novels perfect for a summer read; unless of course you plan on vacationing in the Canadian wilderness. If you do, beware hungry strangers. Whatever the case, if you like a good horror tale in the vein of The Stand then try The Troop; even if you are creeped out by the prospect of contagions.