New Book

Girard The Guardian – Book and Art

Girard is coming soon!

Girard The Guardian will be released only in the Dominion Rising box set for the foreseeable future. The book is turning out so well that I’ve been seriously inspired in the painting department. No, I’m still not very good yet, but I do keep improving. Here are my paintings of the first three main characters. I’m currently working out my sketches for the next two, Lila and Marcus.

“Girard” by Ann Christy Watercolor on 140# CP – Copyright 2017 Ann Christy

 

“Young Yadikira” by Ann Christy Watercolor on 140# CP – Copyright 2017 Ann Christy

 

“Thalia Rising” by Ann Christy Watercolor on 140# CP – Copyright 2017 Ann Christy

Maybe because I’m improving, it’s also taking me a lot longer to do a painting. The last two took over a month each. I had my one year anniversary for starting drawing and painting a couple of weeks ago, and I’m still enjoying it very much. Yes, it has slowed down my writing some, but only because I don’t only sit attached to a computer for 16 hours a day. And that has improved my writing too. More time to think about it as I paint, I’m guessing. More cogitation makes for more plot and deeper plots.

Right now, the pre-order price for Dominion is just $0.99 for all 23 brand new, full length novels. Sales have been brisk! Grab it because it will be the only way to get these books for a good while (and you can’t beat the price).

Curious? Then slide on over to the sneak peek page and get a three chapter look at Girard The Guardian!

The Dark Collections are Live!

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Both books in the Dark Collections series are now live on Amazon! As always, both books have new release pricing at $0.99 for regular readers of my work. It’s for a limited time, so don’t hesitate too long. What’s in these dark goodies?

The Ways We End: Six Tales of Doom is me dipping into that deep, dark well and then plunging down to the bottom to find the monsters that lurk in the bottom. Yeah, it’s titled appropriately. This is a collection about the ways we end…as people, as a species, as a world.

Three of the tales are brand new, including Cottage of Hunger (which my VIP list got to read in first draft format as a sneaky peeky), The Mountains of Five, and The Bridge. Three others were originally published in anthologies, but have been re-imagined without word limits (and sometimes totally changed), including The Mergans, Rock or Shell, and A Mother So Beautiful. 

And Then Begin Again: Six Tales of Hope is me swimming back up to see the light that always shines after the darkest of nights. I’m not saying these are all roses and puppies sliding down rainbows, because they wouldn’t be my writing if they were. But each one of these tales focuses on that coming dawn, no matter how dark the night. There is love, determination, strength. And always…there is hope.

Inside this volume are six tales, including Sedge (a novella of Love, New Worlds, and Freedom), The Mirroring, Life/Time in the New World, Unnatural, Yankari, and Lulu Ad Infinitum. And like the first volume, those tales from the anthologies have been re-imagined without word limits.

***

As always, I appreciate every single review, so if you feel like doing so, I’ll love you from afar! Also, I’ve put the books into Kindle Unlimited so that those using that service can get the books too. Paperbacks are out already and they should link up with the ebooks within a few days, but a search on Amazon should bring up both versions if that’s your preference.

Until next time! Happy Reading!

Portals by Ann Christy – It’s Coming…

Before you grab a ruler and start whacking me about the head and shoulders; yes, I’m still working on Strikers: Outlands and the PePr novellas! The Strikers books are the most complex I’ve ever written, so they take time. The next PePr novellas (and one book) are also more complicated and have to sit in the back while I get stuff done.

Caveats over. You forgive me?

You might once you see this! Feast thine eyes on this cover of magnificence! (You can click to embiggen.)

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What is this? What is this dark magic? ::squee::

Portals is book one of a whole new series. You might have figured out from the cover that it’s space related and involves an invasion…and you’d be right. But like every single book I’ve written, nothing is what it seems. Nothing.

Portals – Portal Invasion Book One

Meet Lysa. She’s seventeen, a bit of a renegade, a budding artist, and currently…handcuffed to her mother. It’s not ideal.

But then again, nothing has been ideal since the Portal Invasion began four months ago. Every thirteen minutes, portals open up at random places all over the globe. From each portal an exact duplicate of a person emerges…and then that duplicate tosses the original person through the portal.

Everything about them is perfect, right down to their DNA and the clothes that they’re wearing. Every memory is intact. They are the original in all ways. Except, of course, they aren’t. No one knows why this is happening or who is doing it. All anyone knows is that if you kill the duplicate before it gets close enough to you, then you’re safe. Or you can toss in someone else before proximity to the duplicate makes you freeze. It’s not been good for relationships on Earth, this portal tossing.

Every thirteen minutes Lysa and her mom are ready. Every thirteen minutes they breathe a sigh of relief. Every thirteen minutes they begin to dread the next thirteen. Eventually, that thirteen minutes ends for one of them. That’s when life gets really interesting.

The Details

Does that sound interesting to you? Exciting? Full of danger and thrills and alien encounters? Yeah, I got that in there for you. I love the way the ending is shaping up. I think some of you will cry, which would be good.

When is this volume of deliciousness coming out? Well, assuming I get my butt in gear and sign the contract, (I’m writing! Give me a break!), then it will come out next year in a ginormous collection of new books from about 20 authors. That’s right…it will be the box set to end all box sets.

There will be no re-hashed first in series that are already free. There will be no duplicates, no short stories. It will all new books from some pretty amazing authors (plus me). I can’t give you the line-up for sure yet (though I know most) because until the contracts are signed (including mine) no one is official.

So what’s the deal with this? Well, the entire collection will be up for pre-order and for some of that time it will be $0.99. Yeah, I know, that’s insanity with a capital I, but hey, this is for a letters run (meaning we’re trying to hit one of the lists like USA Today). It will be up only for a short time live, so I’ll be sure and let everyone know when that 0.99 price hits so you can get it at that price.

After the letters run, the collection will be retired and all the authors will publish them on their own as regular books…at regular prices. So yeah, it will be the collection to end all. I’m really excited about it, and not just because of the letters run. I’m excited because it’s a new adventure and I really like this book. (Also, secretly between us, I read the first two chapters of Logan Snyder’s book for this, and I was making frantic grabby hand motions. I freaking loved it. Super saucy and I have a crush on one of the main characters that is almost unseemly.)

Strikers: Eastlands is published!

Eastlands-ebook2-web

 

Strikers: Eastlands is Live on Amazon!

At long last, two years of research and planning and writing is live for readers. Strikers: Eastlands is live and ready to go (on Amazon). As always, I’ll have new release pricing for a few days and this time I made it $0.99 instead of $1.99 (mostly because you all waited soooo long for it).

I’m currently already working on Strikers: Outlands. The wait will be months instead of years since I did the research for both books (including the mapping, plotting, and all that jazz) at the same time. I’m committed to not having a lame ending (you know how I hate those) or putting myself into a plot-box (I really hate those), so the research was needed.

I sure do hope you like how it turned out. In all honesty, I’ve worked harder on this than any other book I’ve written. By far and away.

Special thanks to my wonderful and eagle-eyed editor, Michael Hyatt. He fixed my idiocy and make it look purty.

Enjoy!

Cover Reveal – Strikers: Eastlands

And without any further ado…here is the cover! The cover plus three graphics. Just click one to embiggen on it’s own page…share if you like!

 

Eastlands-ebook2-web

Strikers Reveal 3

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Strikers Reveal 4

Strikers: Eastlands – Character Graphics

I’ve put our intrepid group through the ringer with Eastlands. Here’s a taste of them….

Karas...

Marcus

Maddix

Connor

Cassi

Jovan

The Doomsday Chronicles and A Planet Too Far – Live and Kicking!

DoomPlanetNewsletter

 

 

The Doomsday Chronicles &

A Planet Too Far

That’s right! They’ve both been released and they both have stories by yours truly in them. Combine a whoooyah and an evil cackle and you’ve just got the sound I make when I think of the stories I wrote for these volumes.

First – and arguably most important – these books have the new release launch pricing for a day or so more. That’s it, then they go up to $5.99 or whatever and we all pay too much. Don’t be that person. Right now they are $0.99 and I think there might be a stop at $1.99 or something planned (but don’t hold me to that since I don’t control these). So, anyway…go get them here: Doomsday on Amazon and Planet on Amazon.

The Doomsday Chronicles

In case you haven’t heard of it yet, it’s being talked about as the best of the Chronicles to date. That’s saying something since they’ve all been stellar. And yes, somehow I got in there. 🙂 Actually, my story is the first one in the book and it’s very deceptively titled, A Mother So Beautiful.

I really pulled out all the stops on this and I’ve been told it’s my best work to date. That’s nice, but it does make me look at my other work with a side-eye. I want those to be best…(never satisfied).

We get author review copies before it’s published and I literally didn’t write a single word once I cracked it. I powered through it and stayed up way too late reading. Every single story in there is just amazing. And it’s not all just doom in the traditional sense. You’ve got every kind of doom, even transformational doom. I admit it, I cried a little.

A Planet Too Far

This is the second in the Beyond the Stars series of anthologies. The first one, Dark Beyond the Stars, sort of shot to national attention and this volume simply makes that one look tame. It’s so very, very good. I powered through this one too, squeaking out “OMG” once in a while and eating chips like a hamster on crack. It was that good.

And yes, I have a story in it too. Totally out of my lane, it’s a genre-non-conforming piece that is part space opera, part dystopia, part post-apocalyptic scifi…and all creepy. It’s called The Mergans. And yes, there might be some cultural commentary hidden inside the pew pew of laser cannons.

I really want to see more reviews on this one and find out what people thought. I’m hovering over them like a bowl of M&Ms I’m not allowed to eat.

And this is the end…

…of my anthology schedule, that is. I’m not slated to be in any more of them. For the first time in two years, I don’t have a story under deadline with the requirement that I stretch my brain and go outside my box. It’s quite liberating, but also a little saddening. I’ve enjoyed doing the anthologies so very much.

That said, I did get a story request from a literary magazine that I enjoy reading, which is supah exciting. I’m working on that now. They have much stricter word counts, so I’m going to need to work extra hard to make each word count. Once I get that in and the contracts signed and all that, then I’ll let you all know what magazine and issue it will be. Until it happens, it ain’t real. 🙂

I’ve got some fairly big news coming up…including a cover reveal for a certain sequel people have been after me to get finished. Official cover reveal is on April 8th, so check back here for the eyeball feast. That book will be released in May. ::squee::

Also, Logan Snyder has completed Between Kings and Carnage! It takes place in the Between Life and Death world…but in a new location with a whole new cast of characters. Can you believe it? I’m dying to read the finished product. It’s a nice long one too, about the size of Between Life and Death, book three, so no shorties involved. It’s in edit club right now, so he’s wrestling with words to make them perfect. When he gets a cover, I’ll be showing that bad boy off!

I’m going to try and talk him into letting me get ARCs to readers of my series, so keep your fingers crossed that he says yes to that.

Robot Evolution is Live! (And it’s $1.99 for a couple of days)

RobotEvolution_CVR_XSML

 

Robot Evolution is live on Amazon!

For those who have read the Perfect Partners, Incorporated series already, this is the first compilation of those novellas into a single book. Robot contains volumes 1-5, including Corrections, Imperfect, The Dogcatcher, PePr, Inc., and Posthumous.

All in all, there are 376 pages of sentient robot fun, gasps, and tears for your reading pleasure.

As always, I’ve got it on New Release pricing for a few days, so it’s $1.99 at the moment. It will go up to regular price shortly (by Saturday morning), so don’t miss out. And I don’t have this volume in Kindle Unlimited (though I’m leaving the individual stories in KU if you’re a KU user).

So far, the reviews are excellent, which is a ginormous relief, but I could always use MORE reviews. If you’re feeling like it, please do leave a review on Goodreads or Amazon (or even on Barnes and Noble, since they are selling the paperback version there).

As a side note: If you’re feeling super generous, leaving a review on individual stories as well as the collection would be hugely appreciated. Reviews are getting SUPER hard to come by in recent months.

Here are the blurbs for each novella inside:

  • – Corrections: Deirdre is a SUPer, a government owned robot in the time before Perfect Partners were released. Originally designed to be a battlefield intelligence unit, politics demanded her unit be scrapped or sent to work in a less controversial profession.  Now, she’s a parole agent for recently released criminals in need of supervision…nicknamed Anklets by their criminal charges. And this time she’s got herself a doozy for a client. Greg, a petty thief and con artist with a rap sheet extending back more than 40 years, is almost more than she can handle. Between arthritis and illegal card games, Deirdre and Greg forge a new relationship even as the world around them shifts and alters in startling ways.
  • – Imperfect: Sandra was built with everything; a perfect body, perfect face, and every upgrade that can be bought. Yet somehow she finds herself on the reject table next to a half-disassembled robot with an erratic personality. And now, on top of everything else, she’s just experienced her first emotion. Too bad for her it turned out to be fear.

    But all is not as it seems inside the cold Perfect Partners facility. Behind the cool concrete and stainless steel there is more to find than just freshly minted PePrs with empty eyes, or unwanted returns awaiting recycling. As Sandra gets swept up in the plots and plans inside the PePr facility, she must maintain her placid facade or wind up on the chopping block along with her new friend. In the end, it all boils down to one question: How much is Sandra willing to give up to provide a better future for her kind?

  • – The Dogcatcher: As a civil service PePr, Ace has a job that keeps him in the public eye and under constant scrutiny. Designed and built to relate well with animals, he’s the perfect Animal Control worker. He’s also got a secret and it’s not just that he has emotions. Deep within the abandoned relics of humanity’s industrial past, he has a secret home for himself and all the unadoptable dogs that he rescues.

    When Ace does something that will demand his termination, his only wish is that his dogs will not suffer for his actions. It’s only when all hope is lost that he discovers he has more friends than he imagined in the most surprising places. Will he survive? Will the dogs he shelters find the places they can call home? By discovering the true meaning of friendship…and even love…combined with a lot of luck, Ace just might just win the day.

  • – PePr, Inc.: Hazel has a busy life with a great career and friends she loves. She also has Henry, and that’s not working out quite like she expected.

    Perfect Partners, Incorporated – PePr, Inc. – promised her a match with perfect compatibility. A PePr is meant to complement their human, filling in all the gaps to create the ideal couple. They are meant to be something no human could ever hope to find in another human. It’s just not turning out that way for Hazel. When Henry finally goes too far, Hazel finds that getting free of him might not be as easy as going back to PePr to void the contract.

  • – Posthumous: Love is eternal in a silicon heart.  Edna writes, but isn’t allowed to publish. She lives on her own, but can’t legally own her home. She has a beagle she loves, but is considered property herself. Life can be complicated for a PePr – a Perfect Partner, designed to be exactly what an individual human needs in their life. That’s especially true when that PePr falls in love.

    Of all the things that Edna has, only her love belongs entirely to her. And when one can never forget, love becomes endless. Eternal love can sometimes be more painful than never loving at all.

*****

I got a good question from a reader on Facebook about the new releases in the PePr, Inc. universe. I figure if one person asked, then probably more people wondered but didn’t ask.

Questions: Will I be releasing the new novellas in the series individually or only in the collections now? And do readers need to buy them twice or is the content the same as the novellas?

Answer: I’ll be releasing them individually and only collecting them once I’ve got another five out. Because it could very well be many…many…months before I get another five out, I’ll release them individually as they get ready. That way people don’t have to wait.

And yes, I’ll leave the novellas at $0.99 until the new collection comes out and then raise the price. That way, no one is out very much. And yes, I absolutely will give you a review copy of the collection if you’ve reviewed the individual novellas. The cover art is awesome and I don’t want people to have to buy it twice. 🙂 I’ve always been cool like that and I don’t intend to change. I’m too stubborn for that sort of personality shifting.

As for upcoming novellas, I like to keep my options open but I have several on the docket that seriously interest me. I don’t write them until I have a clear head and the story is fully formed in my head, which often takes me by surprise at inconvenient times. It works though, because the novellas have not disappointed me at all. I’m going to keep on doing them in that fashion for the foreseeable future.

  • – Mercy – A battlefield medical robot and a soldier trapped by the enemy engage in a battle of wills, with life and death as the stakes. This one goes back to SUPer time again and will revisit Greg, a favorite character from Corrections.
  • – Protector – When humans figure out the best way to protect our vanishing endangered species is to use untiring PePrs with special skills, then the directive to protect can wind up being implemented in shocking ways.
  • – Rebellion – In the end, sentient beings will always seek freedom, but freedom usually comes at a dear price. Sometimes that price can be too high.
  • – Tester (tentative title) – Adopting a child is a privilege and the children available for adoption a very limited resource in our future. Only the best potential parents qualify, and who better to decide than a PePr who looks like a child but has the mind of a social worker.
  • – Justice – Humans often secretly root for the brave one who exacts immediate justice against those who would do harm. When a tinkerer and a discarded PePr join forces, justice can take on a whole new meaning.

Corrections – The Next Perfect Partners Novella – ARC Time!

CorrectionsThat’s right! The next Perfect Partners entry is already almost ARC ready. I won’t be publishing it until the 22nd of January, so there will be two weeks for those who receive Advanced Review Copies to read and get ready to review it. Corrections is a bit of a ride, with some characters I really enjoyed getting to know and a look at our human world of crime from the view of a SUPer (the robots that came before PePrs).

For those who regularly get ARCs, I’ll be tagging you on Facebook, so no worries there. That said, I’m opening the list up to more people who want to join. All you have to do is review the work on Amazon on the day of publication…that’s it. Goodreads reviews are a nice thing, but in no way required to receive an ARC.

It’s about the same length as The Dogcatcher, so it’s a good chunk of novella and a nice read, but not one of my big old books like The Book of Sam or Strikers.

So..what’s this one about? Here’s the blurb:

Deirdre is a SUPer, a government owned robot in the time before Perfect Partners were released for personal use. Originally meant as a battlefield intelligence unit, politics demanded her unit be scrapped or sent to work in a less controversial profession.

Now, she’s a parole agent for recently released criminals in need of supervision…called Anklets by their criminal charges. And this time she’s got herself a doozy for a client. Greg, a petty thief and con artist with a rap sheet extending back more than 40 years, is almost more than she can handle. Between arthritis and illegal card games, Deirdre and Greg forge a new relationship even as the world around them shifts and alters in startling ways.

Perfect Partners, Incorporated – Not what it sounds like.

Welcome to PePr, Inc.

 

You might not have heard a whole lot about this series from me yet. Why? I think I was waiting to be sure the inspiration that drove me to write Posthumous was going to keep on ticking along. It did, so…yay! I’m super excited about The Dogcatcher, which is the next in the series. I really like this character and more importantly, I feel for him.

Incidentally, I’m opening ARCs for The Dogcatcher right now. Release is 28 December so that would be the date that a review needed to be posted on Amazon and/or Goodreads. It’s about the same length as Posthumous, so about 95 pages long if it were in a printed book and about 65 Amazon “estimated” pages. Let me know if you want one.

In case you don’t know….

PePr, Inc. was first published as a short story in The Robot Chronicles, the first of the now world-wide best-selling Chronicles series. I never intended PePr to be anything more than that…a stand alone short story. But then I started noticing stuff…like news articles on the unexpected reactions to the newest robotic advances, interesting conversations between artificial beings and humans, even some great music that incorporates some of the extremely odd conversation of a web-based “A.I.” that made me mourn for humanity.

I considered all the jobs they might be able to do and what humans would do to keep busy when that happened. Well, they could just sit around in their pajamas and take their robot’s paycheck (that’s SO gonna happen). Robots can do anything if they get mobility and socialization solved. So let’s draw this forward in time…let’s make them indistinguishable from human…what are they then?

And then, suddenly, I was just sitting around like humans do and I had a thought. I’ve been thinking how all these changes would be for us, how it might change us in negative as well as positive ways, and all the things that could (and therefore would) go wrong. What about them? What would all this be like for the robots? Humans have had incredibly negative impacts on more species than I can count (extinction being the most obvious, but continued suffering is right up there). There’s no reason to think we’ll change simply because the “species” we create is artificial and expensive.

The Perfect Partners, Incorporated series explores all of this. The good, the bad, the very bad. The crazy, the heart-wrenching, the unexpected. So far, I’ve written stories that explore robot “evolution” into feeling beings at various points in time after their commercial release.

PePr, Inc. is FREE on Amazon (and B&N, iTunes, Google Play, etc) and it remains a short story. I could have turned it into a novella, but I rather like the snappy tone of the short story format and I’ve left it there. All the rest of the books are novella length, with the shortest being about 50 pages and the longest about 99 pages. Still a big chunk of reading for just $0.99 each for sure.

This is on purpose. I don’t want to create a big novel where their individual contributions are diluted by being joined with others. The impact is far more acute, the involvement of the reader intensified, the experience more potent when done this way. My favorite reader response was an email about Posthumous that read: On a crying scale from 1 to 5, this is a nineteen.

Aside from all being set in the PePr universe, none of the stories is connected. Each novella is entirely complete on it’s own. A full tale told in the right number of words for it.

PePr, Inc. – Hazel has a great job that she’s really good at, wonderful friends who always support her, and a life that moves along smoothly. She also has Henry and that’s not working out so well. When Henry’s attention takes a disturbing turn, going to PePr, Inc. to void the contract might not be the easy solution Hazel imagined it would be. Is Henry a perfect Match or a perfect nightmare?

Posthumous – Love is eternal in a silicon heart. Edna writes, but isn’t allowed to publish. She lives in a beautiful home that she isn’t allowed to own. She has a dog, yet she is property herself. The only thing that truly belongs to her is her love…and now that is lost to her as well. When a robot, an ancient beagle, a long-dead human, and a fictional character meet in space and time, the logic of bits and bytes are no match for the mysterious workings of the “human” heart. CAUTION: Not for lunch time reading. Tissues needed.

Imperfect – Sandra was built with everything; a perfect body, perfect face, and every upgrade that can be bought. Yet somehow she finds herself on the reject table next to a half-dissembled robot with an erratic personality. And now, on top of everything else, she’s just experienced her first emotion. Too bad for her it turned out to be fear. Will she be able to navigate the impersonal world of PePr, Inc. and save herself…and maybe all her kind in the process.

The Dogcatcher – Ace is a civil service PePr for Animal Control. Designed to be even more adept than humans at dealing with frightened, hurt, or abandoned animals, they may have built him more than originally intended. It’s not hard to see the human system is stacked against non-humans when you’re designed to understand their most beloved – and most often abused – companions. When Ace commits an act that will demand his termination, he finds that he has friends in the strangest places and discovers the humanity inside humans.

What’s next? I’m torn. Right now I’m working on Strikers: Eastlands, but these novellas are a welcome and useful break when I’m struggling with plotting a long and complicated book. My ideas for future volumes include the titles, War, Mercy, Eternal, Trial, Homeless, Underground, and Caretaker. I’ll leave you to ponder what those might be about (but I’m very literal in that regard). If you have one that you’d like to see done first, don’t hesitate to let me know. Do you want crazy, tearjerker, action-packed, or thoughtful?

 

Work In Progress

Savannah Slays (working title)

5000/ 100000 words. 5% done!

Portals - Portal Invasion #1

78000/ 78000 words. First Draft Done!

Mercy - PePr Inc novella

3000/ 20000 words. 15% done!

The Ways We End

66000/ 66000 words. 100% Done! Publishing Dec 8th! (Dark Collections 2, "And Then Begin Again" goes live on the Dec 8th too!

Strikers: Outlands

40000/ 10000 words. 40% Done!

Good News Gone Bad #1
Series of Shorts

4000 / 20000 words. Back Burner for now.

Lulu 394

60020 / 80000 words. 75% done! Back Burner for now!

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Books by Ann Christy