Cover Reveal – The Blood Empress

Next month I’ll be releasing the second novella set in the Star Saga’s Starforgers Trilogy. It’s a coming of age story about the young Empress Nykostra of Voton. Set between book’s two and three, the story deals with how the Empress rose from a guarded youth to a powerful leader of the largest stellar empire. It works great as a stand alone story but if you’re reading the saga books, it fills in some gaps that avid readers will appreciate.

Here’s the cover art by my brother, Byron McConnell. It features an image of Mars standing in for Con One and the KiV-4 trainer model in 1/48 scale. The color scheme for the series is orange and blue with orange denoting the Empire and blue the Alliance. This story being all about the Empire, it’s mostly orange. Where as Devon’s Blade is mostly about the Alliance and so it predominately blue.

The Blood Empress 10-27-15 High Res

The Blood Empress goes on sale next month, so stay tuned for the release date. In the meantime, go snag your copy of Devon’s Blade and then leave reviews everywhere you hang out online. Thanks!

Paperback Proof of Starstrikers

The latest proof for my paperback versions of the Star Saga novels arrived this week. Above is a picture of both books together. We opted to go with a series banner at the top and this causes a slight realignment with the other elements of the cover. Both books are 5×8 format and are printed by CreateSpace.

Here they are side by side, spines out. Two things of note here. The first is the removal of the coin at the bottom of the spine. It was determined that the image was unreadable in final form, so we replaced it with the name of my imprint. This brings the book into compliance with my imprint format that we established with my Mystery novel, Null Pointer.

The second thing we added was a series number in a black circle. You’ll note that Starstrikers is actually book 4. Starforgers is book one and Starveyors is book 7. Yes, just like Star Wars. I have essentially three trilogies in this nine book series. I wrote the first book in each trilogy to establish the characters and world building. Each series is separated by 500 years and each has its own set of characters.

The numbering convention will confuse the readers and make them wonder WTF is going on. There is no getting around that. But when you flip through the opening pages of each book you see a graphic that informs you of the time between books. So it’s safe to read books 1, 4 and 7 first and then come back and read the other two books of each trilogy. You won’t have spoilers.

Here is another look at both books. Starstrikers is pretty much dead on what it will look like in final form. The spine text will be aligned better when we are finished.

This is the back cover of Starstrikers. Now it can be revealed why I spent so much time building an awesome plastic model of a starship! For use on this cover, of course! ;-)

The red banner color was chosen to reflect the war years. Starforgers will have a blue banner and Starveyors will have a green banner. More clues to the reader that they are from separate trilogies.

Here is a shot of the graphic that explains the time line of the war in which the books are set. This same graphic is currently in the ebooks.

One more book to go and we’ll have three proofs. I expect that the Starveyors proof will be just about perfect.

I’d like to thank my brother for his tireless work in bringing these books to life. He’s been doing everything on them. From the interior typesetting to the cover art and design. If you’re looking for a top-notch interior or exterior book designer, I can’t recommend him more. He’s available too! Check the blogroll for his contact information.

Red Allen on Kindle Select

My Sci-Fi short story, Red Allen, is FREE for today and tomorrow on Kindle Select. This is one of my favorite stories about the legendary test pilot from the novel Starforgers. Set on an arctic starbase where Red must discover why a venerable starfighter is having mechanical problems.

This is also the kick off of my FREE WEEKEND series. You can get this fine short story free all weekend. Next weekend I will be offering up another short story and so on and so forth all through March. If the program is successful in bringing exposure to my novels and short stories, I’ll of course keep it going after this two month trial period.

Also of note, my Mystery novel – Null Pointer is also back on sale for this weekend. It’s about a programmer who must find a killer who strikes his victims over the internet. This one is not SF, it’s just a regular Mystery with a programmer as an amateur detective.

There is a good possibility that if you enjoy Science Fiction, you might be in the computer science field or Information Technology. Every single programmer who has read Null Pointer has enjoyed it. Some programmers say it’s one of their favorite books because it portrays them in a realistic manner. If you are a programmer, you should really check it out. How can you miss when it’s free?

If you read and enjoy Null Pointer, come back and read the short story – The Safe Cracker, featuring Detective Plait.