Big News Cover Reveal!

This has been some time in the making, so I am ecstatic to have permission to talk about it. It is the cover reveal for a new book coming out, an anthology, that I am so fortunate and excited to be a part of!

First, a little background.

Last year I posted a review of Janet Morris’ masterful historical fiction novel, I, The Sun, and described how I have been a fan of her writing since I was a teen.

A few of the books that have followed me through many moves since the 80’s.

Well, you can only imagine my star-struck excitement when she read my novel, The Retreat to Avalon, and liked it enough to invite me to contribute a short story to her upcoming anthology!

Me when I found out. And had calmed down.

To be continued…

This upcoming work is actually the second volume in the series. The first volume is called Heroika: Dragon Eaters. Seventeen short stories, each by a different author, about dragon slaying in various forms. It is fascinating, because the stories cover a wide variety and range of dragon concepts, from ancient to modern. As described by the publisher, Perseid Press:

The art of dragon killing:

Dragons have been eating humans for centuries. Now heroes throughout history stalk their legendary foe. Learn how to hunt, kill, and eat the wild dragon. Never before has revenge tasted so good. A literary feast for the bloody-minded.

In Janet Morris’ anthology on the art of dragon killing, seventeen writers bring you so close to dragons you can smell their fetid breath. Tales for the bold among you.

HEROIKA 1 — DRAGON EATERS, an anthology of heroic fiction edited by Janet Morris, features original stories by Janet Morris and Chris Morris, S. E. Lindberg, Walter Rhein, Cas Peace, Jack William Finley, A.L. Butcher, Travis Ludvigson, Tom Barczak, J. P. Wilder, Joe Bonadonna, Milton Davis, M Harold Page, William Hiles, Beth W.Patterson, Bruce Durham, and Mark Finn.

The idea behind the series is to focus on the heroic. As Janet said in an interview:

Heroika: The Dragon Eaters is a dark heroic fantasy – as all heroic fantasy was by definition dark until recent times.  The heroic model fascinates me:  moderns call it species altruism, but heroic models and heroic ethos have been with us since the earliest days of humanity. In writing heroic fiction and heroic fantasy, I am delving into the commonality of humans at their best – and sometimes at their worst. Many great heroes of literature and history have been deeply flawed, yet their heroism made them role-models to generations.

Find the full interview at Library of Erana

That paragraph is key to so much of the writing that Janet, and her husband and co-writer, Chris, have produced. You may think you know the classics, but have a conversation with her on ancient history or mythology, and you’ll be reaching for your copy of Thucydides or Bulfinch.

The exploration of the heroic mythos continues in the second volume in the Heroika series by focusing on an often unsung, but crucial role on the battlefield. There are many heroic tales about the heavily armored warrior, shield in hand, striving against the foe. This time, Janet and Chris wanted to explore the heroic mythos of warriors who face the might of the armored Goliath with little more than speed and cunning.

A drum roll, please!

The book is called Heroika: Skirmishers. And without further ado, here’s a look at the upcoming cover!

Beautiful, isn’t it? Well, that’s all I can talk about right now, but I am very excited about this project and my small part in it. Words can’t express the honor it is to be included in a project by one of my favorite authors. If someone had pointed to the Morris book that thirteen year old me was reading and said that, one day, I would contribute a story to a Morris project, I would have had a cow, man.

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