Monday, 4 January 2016

Announcing the release of The Circus of Machinations (Tales of Crow #4)

The Circus of Machinations (Tales of Crow #4)

January 15th 2016



 For five long years, Professor Kurou has been in hiding, a wraith haunting the streets of the remote Siberian mining town of Brevik.

Victor Mishin is a small-town inventor who needs his help. An unstoppable, inhuman army is approaching the town, and the townsfolk face total annihilation at the hands of an evil even greater than the one that walks among them.

For at the head of an army is a man who will stop at nothing to see Professor Kurou dead.

The Tales of Crow series:

1 - They Came Out After Dark
2 - The Castle of All Nightmares
3 - The Puppeteer King
4 - The Circus of Machinations

CATCH UP WITH TALES OF CROW 1-3 BOXED SET


Thursday, 24 December 2015

Chris's Christmas Message

Chris’s Christmas Message

It’s that time of the year once again where I decide to risk the wrath of the internet and say something about the state of the world as I see it. Firstly, Merry Christmas. To all my family and friends, to all the positive, good-doing people of the world, I love you all dearly. To all the haters, the assholes, the murderers, abusers, manipulators, fuck off. Have a shit, lonely Christmas, you worthless pricks.

I think it’s worth looking back over 2015 to try to make 2016 better. We’re all human, and we all make mistakes. Think back over the last year to those times when you were an asshole for no particular reason (and we all had them), when you pushed someone who didn’t deserve it, or were rude to someone just because you were having a bad day, or didn’t help someone when you could have, etc., etc., etc., and in 2016 try to even it out by doing something positive. In fact, if everyone did two positive things for each negative thing, it would be pretty much problem solved.

Humanity is a pretty odd species. We search endlessly for new life in space while relentlessly destroying life on Earth; we big up war heroes and honour our war dead then commit the ultimate disrespect to those people who died for our freedom by starting new wars and taking the freedom away from someone else; we respond to someone killing our children by bombing theirs; we create an entire industry of building weapons that can kill other people then complain when people use them to do what they're designed for …. doesn’t make a lot of sense, does it?

The same as charity starts at home, so does creating a better world. Not all of us can rush off to Cambodia to build a school for impoverished children, but we can offer a smile to someone who might be having a bad day, share a donut with a stranger, give food to a stray cat, pick up litter off the street, be nice to that guy at work who always blanks you, slow down just enough to let someone who might be in a hurry cross the street.

Just think how much better life could be if we spent all that money, time, and effort on building and creating rather than destroying and taking away. Perhaps if everyone tried just a little harder to do good things (beyond sharing posts on Facebook…) then we might not have to watch miserable shit on the news every single day.

Think about it.

Merry Christmas and a great 2016 to you all!

Thursday, 17 December 2015

The Head of Words audiobook is now live!

Narrated by the fantastic Tim Bick, you can now get Head of Words in audio. Head of Words is my highest rated novel, with an average rating of 4.8 on Amazon.com.

Check it out by clicking the cover below.

http://www.amazon.com/Head-of-Words/dp/B019CW3HJM/ref=sr_1_1_twi_audd_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1450420080&sr=8-1&keywords=head+of+words

Friday, 16 October 2015

The Circus is coming ....

In between writing the new Tube Riders book, I've been doing some editing on Crow 4: The Circus of Machinations, which I'm still hoping to have out by the end of the year. In this episode we find Kurou in vastly alien conditions, hiding out in a backwater town in Siberia as the threat of an unseen invasion army slowly chokes the town. We also meet a brand new protagonist, the softly spoken but put-upon inventor, Victor Mishin.

Here's the beginning of the prologue. Look out for more excerpts coming soon.


Prologue
The robot and the inventor

A cold wind was whipping in from the south, bringing with it flurries of hard ice ripped off the top of seasons-long snow drifts standing like dirt-streaked grey sentinels by the side of the road. Victor Mishin stopped one more time to tie up his hood, but the string was frozen stiff. He scowled, cursing under his breath. Dipping his face away from the wind instead, he turned back to make sure the cart was still following.
From both sides of the road, the dead eyes of Brevik’s abandoned houses watched him with their broken door grins. From inside flickered torchlight, accompanied by the faint peal of nervous laughter. Many became temporary crack houses and brothels after dark, living crypts filled with the skeletal remnants of men and women put out of work by the closing mines and factories.
The first rock to clang off the outside of the cart’s casing made Victor jump. The echo of laughter from a shadowy alley that followed made him shiver.
‘We see you, old man.’
It was the voice of a kid, throat dry from too many cigarettes and cheap local homebrew. Brevik started its youngsters early, and only a kid would ever call him old. Victor wasn’t yet thirty.
‘Come on,’ he told the cart. ‘We have to hurry.’
The machine’s head snapped up, a vaguely humanoid oval. Twin lights at the front gave a wild flicker. ‘Rolling, rolling.’
Another stone landed in the snow at Victor’s feet. He grimaced. Even the prepubescent kids were built out of wire passed down through generations of miners with playful fists, and Victor was no fighter.
‘Level up,’ he said to the cart. ‘We have to move. Now.’
‘Roger that, partner.’
The cart, a silver rectangle, rocked back on its caterpillar treads and lurched into an upright position. Smaller central treads unfolded from the ends of its main propulsion system. It was activating its sprint mode, but in the snow and ice its motors would only last a couple of hundred metres. It would have to be enough.
‘Move it,’ Victor said, as another stone clanged off the cart’s casing.
Shadows shifted behind him as he started into a run, morphing into the shapes of four, five, six kids as they bolted from the alleyway. Victor squeezed his eyes shut as the cart’s accelerator runners spun in the snow, then clunked as they caught on something buried under the surface.
He didn’t want to turn around to see his most treasured invention pitch forward onto its robotic face as the group of laughing urchins descended on it, thrown stones rattling off the metal like machine gun fire, but he had no choice. The cart was dear to him; he owed it a single icy tear frozen against his face by the chilling wind.

He glared for one long moment at the feral children as they engulfed the cart in a flurry of thumping hands and kicking feet, then turned and hurried for home, feeling at least some scant relief that its sacrifice had allowed him to get away.

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Coming soon - Crow books 1-3 bundle

The first three books in the Tales of Crow series are now available for purchase so within the next few weeks I'll be bundling them as a boxed set in anticipation for the fourth book in the series, hopefully by the end of the year.

Watch this space for a release date (most likely early November). In the meantime, here's the cover:



Thursday, 1 October 2015

My Childhood Dream

Obviously I have a day job and generally am a badass sci-fi writer by night. Sometimes I have to write stuff for work too though. I'm an assistant English teacher in a Japanese junior high school, and a teacher asked me to write a speech about my childhood dream. This is what I came up with. It's kind of true and a little poignant haha. I can still remember asking my mother to buy me a power sword. I think I was about five, but who knows haha.



My Childhood Dream
By Chris

When I was a small child, I wanted to be a superhero. I watched the news on TV, and saw that there were a lot of bad things in the world. I wanted to stop these bad things. So one day I asked my mother to buy me a power sword from the supermarket. She said okay, but that night she told me that the supermarket had sold out of power swords, so I couldn’t become a superhero. At that time I felt very sad.

Now that I am older, I understand more about the world. There are still a lot of bad things in the world but we can all help to stop them. Not everyone can change the world in a big way, but we can all change the world in a small way. For example, we can pick up trash or care for cats and dogs that don’t have a family. Or we can say nice things to people even when we don’t feel happy.

I learned that to be a superhero you don’t need to have a power sword, because the power to change the world comes from your heart.


Thank you.

Thursday, 17 September 2015

I wrote a poem today

I wrote a poem today. It's an allegory for the European migrant crisis and the fear of the unknown. It also suggests that it's better to act sooner rather than later.

I found the devil
I found the devil’s body, washed up on the shore
I heard him faintly whisper; “I have fled a distant war.”
A dilemma swift upon me, asked whatever should I do?
Repel him to the water, or offer up some food?
An arm rose from the sand and beckoned me to listen
“To tell your people of our plight became my final mission.
Minding our own business, we lived as devils do
But Heaven took offense at our blasé attitude.
With fire from the sky, and poison in the water
They led us blindly down the track to poverty and slaughter.”
Stunned silent as I looked on him I considered what to do.
Said, “Devil, wait here by the waves, I’ll soon return for you.”
I consulted with my people on a forward way to act,
Passed days and nights with nothing done as we assessed the facts.
A conflict between sun and moon, who were we to intervene?
Resolved we were to tell the devil what we had decreed.
“Head further south, and there you’ll find a safer place than here,
Another town will welcome you and hush away your fears.”
But when I reached that bleakest shore, my words already said,
I found I was too late: the devil, alas, was dead.

Copyright 2015 by Chris Ward