I still really haven’t got back into the regular swing of writing since my nearly three year hiatus. Even regular blogging still eludes me. I don’t like to do several self promoting posts in a row, but at the same time I believe writing anything is better than nothing. So I thought I’d touch on a few updates since I last blogged.
But first, today in International Podcast Day, so what better time to announce that I have sold another short story. My story, “Compassionate Death” was sold to the Canadian Podcast, The Centropic Oracle. This marks another first for me. I’ve never sold a story to a podcast before. I also had to explain to my Dad what a Podcast was.
No information on when this story will be published, but given that today was International Podcast day, I thought I’d share the news now. Besides, the folks at The Centropic Oracle deserve a name drop.
You may also remember that I sold a short story to SciFan Magazine, which was my first print sale. I also blogged a little bit about my thoughts on the publishing side and may have mentioned that I missed doing it. This prompted SciFan Magazine Co-Producer, Dayne Edmondson, to contact me. They asked if I’d join their review team and I accepted.
Now I will preface this with the fact that SciFan Magazine is doing amazing things and I am happy to be a part of their review team. However, it has only made me miss publishing magazines that much more. I will say that I am glad to see a magazine like SciFan. This magazine has huge potential and could go somewhere big in the near future. I am so glad to be a part of it. Still, I hope someday to publish a magazine of my own again. Someday.
I am very excited to finally get Illusion of Victory out to you. Many of you have been eagerly awaiting this sequel in The Serenity Saga.
Here is the back cover blurb:
Captain Christina Serenity is back from the dead, in a manner of speaking. Everyone believed that no one survived the devastating attack on the Earth Space Ship Australia. That is, everyone except Roger Mathews, the traitor that launched the attack. But the four survivors have grown tired of seeking revenge and have returned home to face the consequences of that choice.
The Zercowans are losing interest in fighting Earth’s war and demand some type of action against the threats that face their people. But after several tough decisions, Serenity learns that the term ‘enemy’ isn’t so clear and she no longer feels strong enough to handle the weight of war.
Can Serenity maintain the illusion of strength long enough to gain the victories Earth desperately needs? Or have the pressures of war and revenge already destroyed her?
You can get the book on Amazon in Paperback and for
There are also some other exciting new things to share. My new website has launched. I also had this awesome logo created. Please take a moment to go check out the site and see the new site. I plan to update some of the information in the “about” section soon.
So what is next on the writing agenda. I think I am going to dive right into Book 3 of The Serenity Saga, which will be titled Revelation of Secrets. These characters are ready for more, and I don’t want to keep you fans waiting too much longer.
As always, you can support my work by sharing this blog and all things Flores. Happy Reading!
Oh yes! It is finally time to announce my first release of 2014, Broken Trust. I’ll tell you a little secret, I am absolutely terrified about this release. Here is why: If every book has a little piece of the author in it, Broken Trust has my whole soul in it. I touch on some of my own personal demons in this one and it is a bit scary to put that out there.
But I’m not letting that stop me from having a little fun. I also want to celebrate this novel, my third novel in as many years, with a huge festival. I want to get people pumped up for the release and I am going to do that in the traditional fashion. Throwing free stuff at all of you!
The festivities start with the BOOK A DAY IN MAY giveaway. I’ll be giving away free paperbacks every day in May. The post office is going to love me. I’ll be giving away copies of one of my three books each day. Watch for details coming soon. Are you an author and want me to give away copies of your books too? Send me an email and let me know. I’d be happy to work something out. It would be great publicity for your book as well as mine.
I’ll also be posting regularly with Broken Trust Trivia, Tidbits, and Fun Facts. Not only will these be fun information and trivia about how I came up with the ideas and world of Broken Trust, but knowing these trivia posts will earn you some prizes during the big party.
Pre-Order will be available at a very reduced price. You will be able to preorder both the print and digital version for a discounted price during the month of May. All preorders will be shipped on the day of release or sooner. Those who actively follow the festivities will also get codes for an even greater discount on preorders.
Of course no book release party is complete without a Virtual Book Tour. The book tour will run from May 22nd to June 5th. It will be on 7-14 different blogs (or maybe more), and will include guest posts by me, author interviews, and reviews of Broken Trust. I am looking for blog participants to assist me in the tour. If you blog about books, or writing, please contact me. Tell me about your blog, your followers, and reader numbers. If I select you to participate in the tour, you will get a free copy of Broken Trust and possibly other prizes.
We will also be having a Release Week Super Party. For one week I will be giving away swag, ebooks, prizes, and more. I’ll be asking trivia questions, there will be fun quizzes, and other games to play.
Of course all this leads up to Release Day.Broken Trust officially goes on sale May 29th.
If you want to support me on these festivities there are several things you can do. First, you can preorder. Second, you can support the fun more directly. This includes being a host blog, retweeting and sharing my social media posts, sharing this blog post, donating books to the Book A Day giveaway, donating prizes, and much more. If you would like to help, please contact me as soon as possible. I can always use the help. It is also a great way to drive traffic to your blog and promote your books.
Want more information or to follow the festivities. Check out theBroken Trust page on my website.
About Broken Trust:
Earth is no longer teeming with human life. After a major mass extinction event, the world is no longer able to function as it once had. Governments have collapsed and those that survived are left to figure out what is next for the human race.
Liam Fisher never wanted to be a leader. But after finding survivors, protecting them, and founding the city-state of Lagoon Hills; the people demanded he be their leader. Instead, Liam agreed to sit on a Council with four other leaders.
Together with Talya Brooks, the person who saved his life after the collapse, Liam runs the militia of Lagoon Hills. And though it was tough early on, the people of the city now live in relative comfort and safety.
But Liam is fighting his own personal demons: The loss of his wife and unborn son. Rachel, a past lover he never really got over, has suddenly arrived at the city gates. And the mounting stress of a neighboring city-state threatening war.
The people of Lagoon Hills are counting on Liam for their safety. Can he keep himself together and be the leader everyone wants him to be? Or will the people closest to him be the greatest threat of all?
We have only one more week until Volition Agent releases for public sale. To honor this, and to get you wanting more, I’ve decided to share Chapter Two with all of you. If you haven’t yet, you can read chapter one here. Volition Agent releases on Kindle and Paperback on July 2nd. The Nook release is still TBD.
If you are a book blogger or reviewer, you can get an Advance Reader Copy in PDF or Kindle formats. All I ask is for a review on your blog. Contact me and we can discuss this.
If you want to pre-order your paperback copy of Volition Agent, you can do this through Createspace (an Amazon company), the book printer. If you order today, and use standard shipping, it should arrive very close to the release date (or earlier). There are currently no options to pre-order for Kindle. So if you’d like a Kindle copy early, the only way to get it is to be a book blogger/reviewer and get an ARC.
Below you will see the print cover spread. I think it is absolutely great. Once again I have to thank Kristin Irons and Joy Anna. With out them the cover would be very lack luster.
Here is Chapter 2:
Volition Agent: Chapter 2
Copyright Richard Flores IV
Lexia burst through the door into the alley, still cursing at Lance. She shut up when she saw the red and blue lights reflecting off the buildings. Lexia peaked around the corner slowly before pulling her head back.
“Please tell me that isn’t your car out front,” Lance said in her mind.
Lexia just nodded. She ran down the back of the alley. Two cops came around the back of the building.
“You, stop!” One ordered.
Lexia turned around and ran the other way. Two more came around the front of the building. Lexia looked back and forth at the cops. She took a few steps back and then ran her way through the door of the neighboring building.
She sprinted down the hall, ignoring the cops yelling at her. She hit the end of the building and came to a door. It was locked.
“Hurry up, Lance.”
“I didn’t exactly expect you to park right in front of the target.”
“This wasn’t an assassination assignment either,” Lexia said as the door clicked open. She sprinted up the stairs.
“She attacked us.”
“We’d disarmed her,” Lexia yelled.
“Listen, I handled it within regulations.”
“Regulations! She was a mom; that baby has no parents now thanks to your trigger finger.”
“Can we focus on getting out of here?”
They crashed through the last door and onto the roof. Lexia looked around quickly. “Well, how are we getting out of this?”
The building was shorter than the other two next to it. Three floors, if Lexia counted the flights correctly. This building was twice as wide too. She started to run to the back of the building. She could hear the cops coming up the last set of stairs. She looked over the edge. It backed up to the next street over. From down there she would have a better chance of escaping.
“No way,” she said.
“It’s a survivable jump.”
“It’s my broken bones.”
“You want to be arrested?” Lance’s voice rang through her head. “You know the rules.”
The Agency would disavow her in an instant. She looked back at the door. She took three steps back. “I don’t really have a choice.”
Lexia ran forward and jumped from the building. She opened her eyes for the landing just in time to see a cop car coming around the corner. Hitting the ground, Lexia rolled over several times. The cop car slammed on the brakes and swerved as she tumbled in front of it. The car hit a lamp post.
She jumped up in an instant and took off running down the street. Lexia heard more sirens in the distance, each getting closer. Glancing over her shoulder, she saw another cop car round the corner. The sound of the car behind her was close. She thought she could feel the heat of the engine as it barred down on her. At the last moment she cut down another alley.
Lexia heard the car screech to a halt. She looked over her shoulder to see another cop chasing her. She rounded a corner right into another dead end.
“Did you even look at any of the maps?” Lexia’s voice snipped at Lance.
“Shut up.” Lance’s voice chilled her spine.
The cop came around the corner. His gun pointed at Lexia.
“Hands up!” The cop ordered. Lexia was glad Lance listened. “Turn around slowly, in a complete circle.”
Lexia kept turning and turning until she spun one full time around and now faced away from the cop.
“Stop. Down to your knees.”
Lexia followed the instructions and put her arms on the back of her head. She waited nervously as she heard the cop approaching behind her. He was slow and methodical in his steps. She prayed Lance had a plan out of this.
She felt the handcuffs ratchet onto her right wrist. Just as the cop began to pull her wrist, Lexia dropped forward and pulled hard, toppling them both over. Her wrist screamed in pain as she grappled with the officer.
They rolled over and she managed to get a solid punch to his face. He shoved her off of him. Lexia began to topple backwards, but managed to catch her balance and lunged forward. Knocking the cop over again. Grappling with his arm until she finally pinned him to the ground, she pulled his arm behind his back. She used her other hand to flip open the cops handcuff case. She used his cuffs to restrain him. She pulled him up and sat him against the wall.
“I think he’s back here,” Lexia heard a voice yell out.
“I’m here!” The cop yelled.
Lexia knocked him out in one swift blow.
“Was that necessary?” Lexia asked.
“The fire escape,” Lance said.
Lexia looked up. She took a run, jumped up on a dumpster, kicked off the wall and just barely caught the bottom of the fire escape ladder. She pulled herself up quickly to the first landing. She checked the window, locked.
“Up there, on the escape!” A cop called out.
She scaled the next ladder and found an open window. Slipping inside, Lexia quickly made her way for the door. She flung it open and ran for the elevator. After hitting the button twenty times the elevator opened. Lexia pressed the basement button inside and leaned against the back wall trying to catch her breath.
“Now what?” She said between gasps.
“Basement parking garage.” Lance’s voice didn’t sound very reassuring in her head.
“They’re bound to have the building surrounded.”
The elevator opened. A strong odor of urine entered. Lexia peeked out cautiously. She didn’t see anyone among the dimly lit rows of parked cars. She ran until she spotted a sedan and walked around it. Taking the handcuff still hanging from her bleeding wrist, Lexia swung hard at the glass. First time nothing happened, just a loud noise that surely told everyone she was down here. The second time the window shattered.
“Well, they know we’re here now,” Lexia said as she slid into the car. “I don’t know how to hot-wire a car.”
“I do. So just let me work,” Lance said.
Lexia just let Lance have complete control as he went to work. The sound of the orphaned child’s cries rang in her mind. She couldn’t stop thinking about what she’d done. She was sure this wasn’t the first child whose parents she had killed, but she just couldn’t get the crying out of her head.
The engine roared to life. She sat up and put the car in reverse and pulled out slowly. As Lexia drove up the ramp she was kept her speed within reason. She was glad Lance didn’t want to draw attention.
She came out to the street and pulled away slowly. She was careful not to look in the direction of a cop, who was just coming out of the alley. Two more cop cars screamed past her. As she turned on the next street she gunned it.
“Can you get to the safe house from here?” Lance asked.
“I hope so.”
“Don’t go home until I can get things in place with The Agency.”
Crap! They got my car out front. It wouldn’t be long until they figure out who I am. How could I have been so stupid as to park nearby?
“Lexia, you understand?” Lance’s voice interrupted her thoughts. “Go to the safe house, stay there. I’m jumping out.”
Dissolution of Peace Spring Blog Tour is official!
I am going on a blog book tour with Dissolution of Peace. The book and I will be traveling through the virtual world to attend various blogs to spread the word about my book. I’m excited about this since it will allow me to share a little bit about me and the book with a new audience. You can visit these blogs and see interviews, guest posts, and book reviews. I will be on tour from April 8th until May 13th this year!
As I mentioned above I will be traveling blog to blog from April 8th until May 13th. There are still a number of dates available so if you would like to get in on the tour, it isn’t too late. There are still several open dates available. If you want one, just go here (link) and pick a date. Then scroll to the bottom of the page and you will see “Would you like to host this author on your blog?” Click the link and sign up.
The folks over at Orangeberry Book Tours are hosting this tour for me. They’ve taken a ton of the work out of it so I just get to hang out at various blogs. While I will try to keep the listed dates below updated, for the most current dates and locations visit my Tour page.
While I hope you will go check out each blog host before and after my posts, I will be posting links to blog tour posts throughout the tour on my Facebook and Twitter pages. So if you don’t follow me there, please do.
Book Feature: A quick feature just announcing the basics about Dissolution of Peace
Twitter View: A interview with me over Twitter. I’ll be off work so I am going to do my best to answer these questions live.
Twitter Blast: A collection of book quotes sent out via Twitter. Please RT the heck out of those. 🙂
Book Review: Just that, a review of Dissolution of Peace
Author Interview: An interview with me, posted on their blog.
Guest Post: This is a post I write for their blog, as a guest.
13th May – End of Tour Celebration post! at Flores Factor.
Blog Tour Giveaway!
This book tour will include the largest giveaway I’ve done to date. There will be some great prizes including: Signed Paperbacks, Free Paperbacks, Free eBooks, and an Amazon Gift card. This is hosted by Rafflecopter and there are multiple ways to enter. The giveaway will end on May 19th. Check back with the giveaway often because as more blogs post, more entries will be possible. In fact, you get five entries just by entering this GIVEAWAY CODE: “E.S.S. Australia”
If you follow me on Facebook and Twitter, you’ve undoubtedly seen a few teasing posts about my next novel project. I’ve teased with a few hints, surprises, and more. Well the teasing can come to an end, I have decided to finally let the cat out of the bag.
My next novel, titled Volition Agent, is a fast paced SciFi Thriller set in the near future. The highly secretive Agency has a Volition program. They take everyday people who are physically fit and recruit them as Volition Agents. They are implanted with a control chip so that a highly trained “handler” can control their every action. If a Agent is captured the loss to the Agency in minimal. Agents are sent on missions from intelligence gatherings to assassinations. Volition Agent followed Lexia, one of the agents.
Here is a tentative blurb:
Lexia Santarelli is part of a top secret group of Volition Agents. These untrained, unremarkable, everyday people are recruited by the agency to be literally controlled by their “handler” through a device implanted in their necks. It is an exciting life, and despite some of the annoyances, Lexia enjoys it.
That is until the Agency decides to let Lexia take the fall for a mission gone wrong. Her link with her handler, Lance is severed. Suddenly Lexia finds herself alone, unprepared, and hunted by the very people she trusted.
With few clues, minimal training, and an unlikely ally Lexia sets out to discover what really happened on that botched assignment. Determined to set right the wrong she created, nothing can stand in her way. Not even the Agency itself.
I have some great cover art for this novel, and I can’t wait to share it with you all. So here it is:
The cover art is shot and designed by Kristin Irons (website). I’ve worked with Kristin before, she designed the logo for Plasma Spyglass Press. Kristin is a very talented photographer and when I explained what I was looking for she said she had an idea. The next week was a bit of a whirlwind. Kristin found a model, the very beautiful and talented Joy Anna, to play Lexia in a photo shoot. She then teased me relentlessly with images from that photo shoot before showing me the image she had in mind for the cover art. I am a very picky and hard to work with person when it comes to cover art, but she kept taking my ideas and reworking them until we came up with the cover above. And I couldn’t be more thrilled by it.
Let me tell you why this cover is so special to me. This is the first time I’ve had anyone “play” one of my character in any way. Joy Anna, whose modeling pictures I had only seen briefly before this, jumped into this project head first. I understand they captured a ton of images and I’ve only seen a few of them. As a writer, I was excited to see what might come from this. I’ve never met, or even talked to Joy Anna but I thank her for her time because the results are absolutely amazing.
A big heartfelt thanks to Joy Anna, Kristin, and her assistant William Harris. So many folks use stock art, or stock photos to make custom cover art. But I have a real custom cover for this novel. Please take a moment to check out the people that helped with this cover, give them a like, follow, or whatever else to show them some support. Kristin Irons:Facebook, Twitter, WebsiteJoy Anna:Facebook William Harris: Flickr
This is the first story I have written where it had a title before I ever wrote it. The whole idea came from hearing the word volition and it’s meaning; the ability to make a choice or decision. So Volition Agent was an easy enough title for me to come up with. I think it works well given the themes in this novel.
So when is the release date for Volition Agent? One hasn’t been set just yet. But I have a deadline of the first week of June 2013. So expect to see it no later than this. I hope to have it out a little sooner, but you can’t rush these things. I’ll be sending it out for Beta Readers in the first two weeks of April. Then my editor will get this. I’ll be working with a new editor this time, since Robert is booked up for the foreseeable future. As always, watch this blog, my Twitter and Facebook for updates.
I’ll leave you with a few other images from the photo shoot:
Head over to this page and check it out. I think they are still building the page to include descriptions ect. But feel free to leave a review if you have already read it. If it does well on Nook, I’ll start releasing all my titles on Nook on release day. Happy reading.
Don’t forget the Paperback is also available at Amazon.com for $7.99. That is a Trade Paperback at mass market price!
Deep down I think we all seek some type of validation. It could be with a loved one, in our careers, and in our friendship. It can also be with parking. We all need it. I have a confession though, I self doubt a lot. That is to say that I am constantly needing validation that my choices are the right ones. This is true of my writing career as well.
But I think writers are a group that need a special type of validation. There are a lot of people out there that want to be writers. There are even a lot of people out there who say they are writers and really don’t know what they mean when they say that. But deep down we writers want to be validated as authors. Unfortunately validation doesn’t always come.
So at what point are you valid in claiming you are an author. Well, that is a bar that we set for ourselves. Some set the bar really high, claiming they can only be an author when they get that first professional sale. Some claim that they can be called an author simply because they say they are.
But what really validates the claim to that title of author? Well for me it is the recognition of my peers, my readers, and friends.
Last year I felt really good when I took 2nd place in the science fiction and fantasy short story category of the 2011 Preditors and Editors readers poll for “Death Watch”. I felt even better at all the nice comments I received. I even felt validated as a short story author. The sale of my first two short stories in a matter of months helped a lot, but being recognized in that poll was special to me.
But what I really wanted to do was sell novels. So in 2012, I didn’t work on many short story projects. I put my work towards publishing my first novel, and I did it. My goal was to get a lot of new readers, and I did that. My goal was to get a lot of reviews and praise, but that has not really happened. I’ve had 8 reviews on Amazon US and 2 on UK. Don’t get me wrong, I am very pleased with those reviews. But one of my roll models, the person that inspired me to get Dissolution of Peace out, seemed to get a lot of reviews very quickly. Even a lot of editorial reviews (of which I’ve only had two). It is my opinion that he made a big splash in the Horror scene, while I seem to have made only a slight ripple (like a pebble dropped into the ocean) in the Sci-Fi scene.
So, I started to question the validity of my claim to be a novelist. Some of my role models in the independent scene, including the person above, have not even shared (to my knowledge) the work I have done. I think perhaps I expected too much from those I thought would return the favor. But the point is that I began to question if I was any good at what I was setting out to do. This is that self doubt I was talking about.
The problem not feeling validated, is that you tend to slump. And I did a significant slump. But then the readers poll came around again. I was nominated for best Science Fiction and Fantasy novel. There were also 85 other novels nominated. In the end I took another top ten finish, coming in 5th for the 2012 poll.
There were some great comments in there too. I take great pride in how much people love my work and my characters. I was ecstatic to see some of these things, they mean a lot to me.
I think the important thing that this post should point out. If you are a reader, like I am, you need to set out to review ALL the books you read but especially the ones you enjoyed. You need to make sure to share that with everyone. Because if you want to see writers continue to write, they need to feel validated. And for many of us, your reviews, purchases, and kind comments validates our purpose. I think this is more important than a professional sale, and or even a large book deal, though those all help. After all, it isn’t about who publishes what we write, but about who enjoys what we write.
So to those who continue to buy my books, vote for my books, comment on my books, review my books, and share my stories: I thank you. You fuel my my writing career and make it that much more likely that I will someday reach all my writing goals.
As for the parking, I think I will just pay for it. That is a validation that can be impossible to get.
The folks over at Celebrating Authors have done a Spotlight on Dissolution of Peace. You can check it out here: LINK. As you usual please show your support by letting them know you saw my spotlight, what you thought of it, and any other comments.
Celebrating Authors is a great website dedicated to spotlighting authors and trying to unite them with readers. I think they are a great site, and I follow them on Twitter and Facebook. Check out their Facebook Page, Facebook Group, and Twitter page too.