Thursday, October 8, 2015

The BARROO Report

The biggest news right now is:


is now available at Writers Exchange!

The newest release in the Commonwealth Universe:


Niall and his crew were just centimeters away from
freedom, escaping in the stolen starship they had christened the Nova Vendetta. Then disaster struck, paralyzing their ship. Retaken as prisoners, they found themselves transported on the very ship that had been their ticket to freedom.

Then the unthinkable happened: experimental technology and a risky gamble put the ship under their control. The escaped prisoners headed for the furthest reaches of known space, determined to stay free at any cost.

Labeled rebels and pirates and criminals, they held to the principles that had let them survive and stay Human during their time in prison. To the outlying colonies slowly being abandoned by the disintegration of the Central Allied Worlds, the crew of the Nova Vendetta and its slowly growing fleet of allies were heroes in the truest sense of the word.

Then the revolution reached out to threaten Niall's homeworld. It was time to go home. He had to protect Sorendaal, even if it meant giving himself into the hands of the very people who wanted him dead.


I'm gearing up for National Novel Writing Month, and it's going to be major fun.

I hope you'll try your hand at it. This is a time for just letting go and writing as much as you can as fast as you can, and seeing where your imagination (and desperation) takes you!

Try it -- you'll like it.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Off the Bookshelf: MAGGIE FOR HIRE, by Kate Danley

This one was just for fun. It was a Free Book Friday book on Nook a few weeks ago, and I got it just because it looked like fun. And it was! A fast read, lots of grins, and reminiscent of "Buffy."

MAGGIE FOR HIRE: Maggie MacKay, Magical Tracker #1

Maggie MacKay is, as the series title says, a Magical Tracker. She jumps back and forth between Earth and the Other Earth, working as a bounty hunger for magical creatures -- like vampires and ghouls and such. Think a smarter, more talented Stephanie Plum with black leather, stakes, and holy water.

Told in first person, there's plenty of snark, and snippets of Maggie's background and memories. She has an interesting family -- including the evil uncle she never knew about until she has to keep him from tearing down the border between the ordinary Earth we all know and the Other Earth -- which could make a lot of problems. One tough chick with an attitude, a seer for a mother, an ordinary, almost too cute twin sister, and other assorted problems. Then there's the too-gorgeous Elf she's forced to accept as her partner on this mission ....

Lots of fun. I plan on reading other books in the series, just for fun. Or maybe a reward for finishing major writing projects. After I get about 20 books off my to-be-read shelf ...

Saturday, October 3, 2015

In the Spotlight: DARCY, Quarry Hall #4

Today's Spotlight focuses on the 4th book in the Quarry Hall series by Desert Breeze Publishing:


Black Ops doesn’t begin to describe Vincent’s former paramilitary team. 

When a friend of the Arc Foundation requests help for a rescue
mission facing scandal, he learns two former teammates are involved. Vincent must investigate for the sake of his conscience, but can his instincts be trusted? Who has reformed, and who still waits to destroy those who betrayed him years ago, when their team disintegrated?

Joan comes along, to provide balance and a second pair of eyes. Josh is in charge of renovations. Karl is the fundraiser. Darcy, Josh’s daughter, is an idealistic young woman ready to give her life for what she believes. As Vincent and Joan track down the enemies of the mission, they uncover lies and an insidious scheme, with Darcy as pawn and prize.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

The BARROO Report

Welcome to October!

I'm delighted to report that in September I reached my two biggest writing goals: revising and polishing and turning in TWO upcoming books.

NOVA VENDETTA #2: THE TRUCE was turned in to Writer's Exchange and should come out in the next few weeks. This is a Commonwealth Universe novel, prequel to the short story SF romance The Pirate and the Professor, and takes place during Age I/The Downfall.

NIKKI'S TEST is the eighth book in the Quarry Hall women's fiction/suspense series, from Desert Breeze Publishing, and will come out in February. Nikki James has finished training and is on her first assignment as a courier for the Arc Foundation. When she is supposed to pick up Brooklyn and bring her home from vacation, she runs into trouble -- Brooklyn has vanished, along with the town sheriff, and other weird things just keep happening.

What are my goals for October? Besides trying to read more than one book each week? Trying to make a dent in my to-be-read book rack?

#1: Condense 2 Wildvine books into one. Wildvine Book #5 is titled Apprentice Solar. Oh, but you don't know about Wildvine yet, do you? This is a 20-book fantasy series I have had sitting in my computer files for ... years. And years. Actually, it's 19-1/4 books. Writer's Exchange will start releasing Wildvine books hopefully by the end of the year. I've turned in 4 so far, and the plans are to condense the 20-ish books down to around 12-15. I started with 140K words, 244 single-spaced pages. The goal is to cut at least 70 pages or 50K words.

#2: FINISH the book I'm currently working on in Wattpad: Friendly Fire. This is the second book in my proposed Seed Worlds SF series, which is currently sitting with a major Christian SF publisher. Cross your fingers! I had to stop working on Friendly Fire for all of September because I had those 2 books to revise and polish and turn in. If you haven't checked out Wattpad and Friendly Fire, please do. I would love feedback. And you'll get a sneak peek at an upcoming series! visit and just search for my name.

#3: Start recycling a paranormal romance series I wrote and published more than 10 years ago, featuring werewolves, turning it into an epic fantasy/quest series. Right now, the title of the series is Quest for the Crescent Moon. There is a LOT of changing that needs doing, starting with changing the color of the heroine's hair, her pedigree (bad joke) and what it means to be half-human and half-wolf .... I think I'll have fun with this, amid all the frustration.

#4: Prepare for National Novel Writing Month. My planned project is THE WICKED QUEEN, which is the sequel to THE WOLF THAT WAS, the sequel to BITTER SWEET, fantasies with a faerie tale feel, from Mundania Press. I'm going to rip a lot of classic faerie tales, so I need to do some major research. Should be fun!

Check back here for regular updates on the Barroo Report!

Monday, September 28, 2015

Off the Bookshelf: THE GHOST BOX, by Mike Duran

This one pushes the envelope. I admit, I like weird, other-worldly stories, but most of the time there has to be some humor, some silliness. I like Warehouse 13, not X-Files.

GHOST BOX tends more toward the X-Files side of things.

This book and author were talked about a lot at the recent Realm Makers conference, and not just because the cool cover art was a finalist for the Parable Award. The book really pushes it into Christian horror -- yeah, there is such a category -- and spiritual warfare. Beyond Peretti.

What's a ghost box, anyway? It's a means of hearing the voices of the dead, trying to communicate with the living world. And a gigundous one is being built in LA, as a building. Where else would it be built? It outdoes that huge spire in Dubai. Yeah, that big. And weird things are going on underground, and strange creepies are being drawn to the tower in preparation for the grand opening. Think the explosion in the first Ghostbusters movie, cubed, to the 10th power, and remove all the cuteness. Yeah. Like that.

Reagan Moon, our hero, is a reporter for a paranormal newspaper called the Blue Crescent. The thing is, he's pretty much a skeptic. At least, until he gets drawn into the weirdness going on with the tower, with the serial murders of mediums throughout the city, and the murder of his girlfriend a year before. That's just the tip of the slimy, occultic iceberg.

Just shows how good this book is, that despite knowing it's going to get really freaky in a few more pages, I kept reading. And not just because our book club chose this book to discuss this month. I could follow Reagan Moon on a few more adventures. No problem at all.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

In the Spotlight: KATHRYN, Quarry Hall #3

Today's Spotlight is on KATHRYN, Quarry Hall Book #3, from Desert Breeze Publishing.

Kathryn is Joan's cousin -- daughter of Harrison Carter's sister. In Joan's story, we learn that Kathryn was used as the vehicle to deliver an genetically engineered disease to Carter that is slowly killing him. As a blood relative, Kathryn shares enough genes to be susceptible. No one knows how long she has to live, though at this point she seems to be healthier than her uncle.

No matter how strong she appears, how well she is handling the death sentence, Kathryn needs to take some time by herself, to think and pray and put her life in order. Life on the road, representing the Arc Foundation isn't that safe, as we've seen with the stories of other sisters. She needs to be ready.

Kathryn's retreat in the mountains, to think and relax and evaluate, is interrupted by a call for help. She is the only Quarry Hall sister in the area, and Vincent has been called in by an "old friend" to help in a delicate, possibly dangerous situation involving a murdered research scientist and his missing daughter. Kathryn sets out for the last place where the woman was seen, to try to find her before her enemies and the authorities do.

From the moment she gets Gretchen into her truck, Kathryn's patience and sense of mercy and pity are put to the test. Gretchen is a self-centered, secretive, thoughtless person. Plus Kathryn's illness keeps flaring up, draining her strength and endurance. She needs to rest, but they need to keep moving to stay alive. Cut off from Quarry Hall because the mountains interfere with cell phone reception, Kathryn has only her training, her companion dog Bea, faith, and prayer to rely on -- and a damsel in distress who seems bent on causing more distress.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

The BARROO Report

Big news!

Sent in to my publisher, Writer's Exchange.

This month was a heavy one with lots of editing deadlines, and TWO books to turn in to publishers. The 2nd Nova Vendetta book was the first one due.

NIKKI'S TEST, the next Quarry Hall novel, is due October 1. Will I make it? It's not a matter of will or won't -- I gotta! I promised.

I had a lot of fun with this book. In the previous book,
the unjustly accused prisoners of the Abyss took advantage of an attack on the space station to capture an enemy battlecruiser. They discovered that the enemy Restoration Alliance is not only filled up with extremists, but paranoid extremists -- meaning they removed key elements from the systems controlling the engines, so no one could leave during the battle. So the prisoners ended up turning the stolen ship over to the authorities, and hoping for some mercy. Well, at the start of book 2, Niall and his crew are back on board "their" ship. They still think of it as the Nova Vendetta, even though the ship has been returned to the rightful authorities. Or so they think. Some weird things are happening on board the ship, having to do with nanotechnology, and a growing sentience in the ship's computer that is reaching out to the prisoners who once commanded her. When Niall and his crew get their chance, they're ready to risk everything for freedom, following in the ancient footsteps of another falsely accused doctor who escaped from slavery and took to the high seas on a vessel called the Vendetta.

Look for Book 2: THE TRUCE, coming out from Writer's Exchange at the end of this month/beginning of October.

You'll get glimpses into the events covered in other upcoming Commonwealth Novels, having to do with Khybors, the birth of brain-ships, Leap ships, and other events during the Downfall era of Commonwealth History.