Many thanks to Shawn Speakman of Grim Oak Press for inviting me to contribute to his new anthology Unfettered II – Tales by Masters ofFantasy, which will include A Duel of Evils, a previously unpublished short story set in the Raven’s Shadow universe. The profits from Unfettered II will go to cancer research and alleviating the medical debt of authors. The book will be available in November 2016 but you can pre-order the hardcover on the Grim Oak Press website.
Here’s the full author line-up:
Bradley Beaulieu (Song of Shattered Sands)
Jim Butcher (Dresden Files)
Sarah Beth Durst (The Queens of Renthia)
Mark Lawrence (Gunlaw)
Erin Lindsey (Bloodbound)
Peter Orullian (Vault of Heaven)
Anthony Ryan (Raven’s Shadow)
Shawn Speakman (Annwn Cycle)
Michael J. Sullivan (The Legends of the First Empire)
Todd Lockwood (Cover Artist)
Don Maitz (Interior Illustrator)
And here’s the story about how this anthology came about:
‘Without health insurance and diagnosed with cancer in 2011, Grim Oak Press owner Shawn Speakman accrued massive medical debt while treating the disease. Rather than declare medical bankruptcy, he reached out to fellow authors and received donated short stories in return—many from New York Times bestselling writers. The stories were collected and became Unfettered, the proceeds from the sci-fi/fantasy anthology eliminating his debt burden.
To pay forward the aid he received—and to memorialize his mother who passed away earlier this year from Stage 4 stomach cancer—Speakman has again collaborated with celebrated sci-fi/fantasy authors to publish Unfettered II. “My mother first put books into my life as a child. Later she helped me survive two different cancers,” said Speakman. “Having lost her to cancer, I will focus my sorrow in a way that will make a difference. Unfettered II is the beginning of that.”
All proceeds from Unfettered II will go toward ending medical debt for other authors as well as be donated in partnership to the Cancer Research Institute in New York, NY.
Such notable New York Times bestselling authors as Terry Brooks (“The Shannara Chronicles”),
Charlaine Harris (“True Blood,” “Midnight, Texas”), Brandon Sanderson (“Wheel of Time,” “Stormlight Archive”), Jim Butcher (“Dresden Files”), and Naomi Novik (“Temeraire,” Uprooted) are contributing short stories to Unfettered II.
Cover art will be supplied by renowned artist Todd Lockwood, who contributed the artwork for Unfettered. Interior art duties will be handled by Hugo Award-winning illustrator Don Maitz.’
Many thanks to the Campaign for the American Reader for featuring The Waking Fire on their blog, and for inviting me to take part in the ‘Page 69 test’, where I comment on the 69th page of the book and how fits in with the rest of the story and provide a few musings on casting choices should the book ever become a movie (I should stress that this is definitely not a possibility at this time).
In other Waking Fire news, I’ve compiled a list of reviews received so far below:
And finally, for any Raven’s Shadow fans who ever wondered what it would be like to play Keschet, French reader Rémi has coded up a free-to-play online version which you find here: http://remi.apps-web.net/Keschet/Keschet. Rémi tells me he’s still working on it so expect a few bugs. Also, it’s not networked so both players will need to be on the same computer and the rules are all in French. Still, it’s fun to see something I’ve written come to life and many thanks to Rémi for taking the time and trouble to make it happen.
The Waking Fire – Book One of The Draconis Memoria – is released today in the UK. It should also be available in Ireland, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand but it might take a day two to appear on vendor sites or in shops.