This week marks the beginning of Lent, which started on Monday for most Eastern Orthodox Christians and Wednesday for most Western Christians. This year is special because Easter will be celebrated by both Eastern and Western Christians around the world on the same day, April 16. This won’t happen again until 2034!

Lent is one of my favorite times of year. It can be incredibly difficult and trying, but it is a gift, an opportunity for spiritual renewal and transformation, a time to critically assess one’s life and progress, an encouragement to refocus one’s life on God.

That’s why today I’m thrilled to announce that my new novel, A Devil’s Gospel, will be released on Palm Sunday (April 9). Writing this book helped me tremendously in my spiritual progress, and inspired in me a deeper appreciation (and wonder) of the amazing collection of books we call the Holy Bible (more on that in the coming weeks). The novel’s tagline is, “The story of Christianity like you’ve never heard it before…”

If I’ve piqued your interest, you can follow this blog using the buttons below. I’ll be posting updates every Monday, Wednesday and Friday during Lent, including cover reveals, excerpts from the novel, and posts discussing different aspects of the book, such as what inspired me to write it and the most surprising thing about the Bible. If you just want to know when the novel is available for purchase, you can subscribe to my new releases newsletter.

So what exactly is a A Devil’s Gospel about? Tune in on Monday to find out!

Tagged with: , , , , , ,

compellingsfissue3Compelling Science Fiction has released their first three issues as Kindle ebooks, including Issue 3, which contains my short story “The Undertow Jackpot.” You can pick up your copy of this issue (and the first two!) at,, and

Tagged with: , ,

Apparently my writing is too hot for Scribd, the ebook subscription service. It was just over a year ago that “Luna City, At Night,” was published there, but a few days ago Scribd decided to ban it for “violation of Scribd’s content policy,” specifically “excessive erotic and/or adult content.”

The story is about a lonely young man living on the moon, who tries to fill up his loneliness by picking up random women at bars, until everything changes one night.

You can read the full text of the story for free at Daily Science Fiction, where it was originally published. If you want it on your ereading device, you can also buy a copy from Amazon (,, and, KoboApple iBooksBarnes & Noble, or Inktera.

You’ll see that the most erotic and/or adult content it gets is in these two  paragraphs:

We are inside my room and I leave the lights off, like every other time. I come up behind her, wrapping my arms around her waist. I begin to undress her.

She turns around, allowing her clothes to fall to the floor. She begins to undress me. I bend my head; we kiss. We are in bed; we’re making love.

Pretty hot stuff, right?

Luckily, if you want to read this story too hot for Scribd, you have lots of choices.


P.S. A commercial enterprise can choose to sell anything it wants, and choose not to sell anything it doesn’t want. So normally something like this wouldn’t offend me. But if you looked up “Luna City, At Night” on Scribd, you’d see this at the top of the page:

Scribd Warning

Since the book was banned effective immediately, with no warning, no grace period, and no appeals process, that statement is just untrue. Now lying to your customers? That does offend me.

Tagged with: ,

My short story “The Undertow Jackpot” is currently available in Issue 3 of Compelling Science Fiction! I’m proud of this story and very proud and excited to have it appear in Compelling!

“The Undertow Jackpot”

Once he caught the scent, it didn’t take long for Ralph Bowdrie, who was smarter than the average bear even if he said so himself, to figure out what the government was up to.

Later he reflected that this was due to three reasons: first, because he was an inquisitive teleporter technician, whose main duty in his large warehouse of an office in Waco, Texas was to receive and safely dispose of old-generation teleporters; second, he had mad Google-fu skills, which had helped him get through most of the theoretical classes at school, including at the technical institute in Boulder that had certified him for maintenance and repair of teleporters from first to fourth generation, particularly since he had even trained himself to search his phone one-handed and to glean the information he needed with a single glance; and the third reason was luck, in the form of a passing comment made by someone in the frozen foods aisle at the Walmart on Franklin, pushing and pulling a gaggle of unruly kids and yelling at one of them, a boy who looked about his own son’s age, that you better start behaving and setting a good example, because there’s four more where you came from.

Read “The Undertow Jackpot” at Compelling Science Fiction

Tagged with: , ,

I’m very pleased to report that Compelling Science Fiction has bought my story “The Undertow Jackpot” for their third issue (coming in the next few months).

I also realized I’ve been very remiss on this blog for failing to mention that my story “The Reality Machine” was published by Daily Science Fiction. Bad author! The first little bit of the story is below, and you can click through to read the rest of the story for free!

The Reality Machine (sample)

Michael Dudlas limped out of his car, which had rescued him from the alley and brought him to the roof of his house. Moving quickly despite the pain, he took the elevator to his basement and unlocked the large room where he kept his reality machine—or, to be more accurate, the virtual mirror copy of the reality machine. He undressed, ignoring the protests from his bruised and aching body, then sunk into the sleek, bath-like pod until every part of him, including his face, was covered by the warm blue liquid. Immediately he felt the pod’s large tendrils envelope his body and head, holding them immobile while the small tendrils slunk through his nostrils and into his brain to do their delicate work (or to undo it).

He closed his eyes because of the discomfort, waited to feel the shift and for the large tendrils to release him. When he did feel the shift—something like a sharp, instant head-splitting shock which was the result of the tendrils either implanting or removing the neural sensory infusers from his neocortex—he sat up and coughed. Usually he allowed the small tendrils to withdraw gently on their own, but this time he grabbed them and tugged, and they fell into the bath in a stream of snot and blood.

Read “The Reality Machine” at Daily Science Fiction

Tagged with: ,

Yay—a second sophomore sale to report this week! Neo-opsis has bought my story “You Just Proved Title Advertising Works”; they published “The Kedari Virus” a decade ago (!) in Issue 9.

Tagged with: ,

Very happy that Daily Science Fiction has bought my story “The Reality Machine,” which will be published later this year.

This will be my second appearance in Daily Science Fiction; my story “Luna City, At Night” was published there on March 5, 2014.

Tagged with: ,

My mystery short story “The Man Who Loved Pie” will appear in Issue 2 of Mystery Weekly Magazine on September 14. Subscribe for free and get this and other mystery shorts delivered to your inbox every week!

“The Man Who Loved Pie” (sample)

…Bellock was already crossing the street (against the light, and ignoring the honks of disgruntled drivers), his destination seemingly a 50s-style diner. For such a big man with such short legs, I thought, he sure could move quickly.

I waited for the light to change and followed him. Through the diner’s large windows, I saw him squeeze into a booth and place an order with the waitress.

Inside I stood by his table but it took him a while to notice me. “Oh, Penning,” he said, finally. “You’ll have to excuse me, I’ve been very impolite. Would you like some pie as well? You’ll just have to promise to sit here quietly while we eat.”

“You ordered pie?”

“Apple, but they have all sorts.”

“Why?” I said, before I could stop myself. Then, realizing the answer to that question was obvious, I said, “Can’t it wait? We have a murder to investigate.”

Amazingly, an annoyed expression overtook the many folds of Bellock’s face. He sighed, stared out the diner window, and said without looking at me, “I’m not ready yet. You may proceed alone if you wish.”

Subscribe before September 14 to get this story delivered to your inbox.

Tagged with: , ,

I’m very happy to announce that my story “A School Report on My Great-Grandad, a Retired Superhero” appears in the latest Triangulation anthology, Lost Voices.

Edited by Jamie Lackey, the anthology also features stories by B.C. Matthews, Alexandra Grunberg, H.L. Fullerton, Rebecca Harwell, Melissa Mead, Jennifer Crow, Joann Oh, Erin Cole, Anita Dolman, Sue Burke, Sean Jones, Michael Nayak, J.J. Roth, Vincent Baverso, Kathryn Yelinek, Jon Michael Kelley, Leigh Harlan, John Walters, Paul Abbamondi and Frank Oreto.

Triangulation: Lost Voices


Experience twenty-one separate visions of what a lost voice sounds like, from a silenced voice inside your head to the screaming of a long-dead alien species careening through space. Within these pages, you’ll find superheroes and ghosts, living statues and vengeful rabbits, polar bears and sailing ships.

Will you listen to our lost voices?


“Loss of a Second” by B.C. Mathews
“Passing Through” by Alexandra Grunberg
“A School Report on My Great-Grandad, a Retired Superhero” by Karl El-Koura
“The First and Second Offerings” by H.L. Fullerton
“The Bear-Woman of the North” by Rebecca Harwell
“Sea Queen, Sailor Queen” by Melissa Mead
“Wandering Swallows” by Jennifer Crow
“Moving Metal” by Joann Oh
“Not All Their Own” by Erin Cole
“The Dragoon of the Order of Montesa, or the Proper Assessment of History” by Nilo María Fabra and translated by Sue Burke
“The Frykstadbanan” by Michael Nayak
“By Way of Answer” by Sean Jones
“Matryoshka” by J.J. Roth
“Pacific Standard” by Anita Dolman
“Empty Reception” by Vincent Baverso
“Offering” by Kathryn Yelinek
“The Ghost of Arriscado Basin” by Jon Michael Kelley
“Nature Could Not With His Art Compare” by Leigh Harlen
“Aurora Borealis” by John Walters
“Opportune” by Paul Abbamondi
“Love at the End of the World” by Frank Oreto

“A School Report on My Great-Grandad, a Retired Superhero” (sample)

This is my report on my great-grandad, submitted to Ms. Gellick, a sixth grade English teacher at All Saints Elementary in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, Earth.

My great-grandad’s name is Sam Twyson and he is one hundred and seventy years old. I don’t have a great-grandma because my great-grandad never married and wasn’t able to have his own children. My great-grandad adopted my grandad in 2115, to celebrate his one-hundredth birthday.

I chose to write my report on him because my great-grandad is interesting and because my dad says I do not spend enough time with him.

My thesis statement is that I don’t spend enough time with my great-grandad because although he is a very interesting person, everything interesting has already happened to him and he tells a lot of stories and repeats them. As a young person, I like to have interesting experiences and not just hear about them. Part of my thesis statement is also that I don’t spend a lot of time with my great-grandad because he does not like leaving his home (like many old people in my experience).

Purchase your copy of Lost Voices to read this and other interesting stories.

Tagged with: ,

I forgot to announce that my story “Battle at the Pit” sold to Frost Fire Worlds and appears in their May 2015 issue. You can read a sample of the story below and order this and previous issues of the magazine from the Alban Lake store. The contents of the May 2015 issue are:

Cog by JD DeHart
The Harper of Stone by Sandra Unerman
The Next Step in the Dance by Maureen Bowden
Battle at the Pit by Karl El-Koura
Making Up by Caroline Cutting

The Adventures of Colo Collins & Tama Toledo in Space and Time by Tyree Campbell – Episode 1: Let’s Find Out

Flash Fiction
A Pet Picnic by Nick Thomas
Merlin’s Sword by Matthew Wilson

What’s Hot and What’s Not by John Grey
Dragontalk by Richard H. Durisen
Dragon by Richard H. Durisen
The Exiled Tyrant by Matthew Wilson
That’s My Boy by John Grey
Battle of Marlowe’s Field by Matthew Wilson
The Farmer’s Task by Matthew Wilson

The Lauren McBride Page
The Sandy DeLuca Page

Battle at the Pit (sample)

Sebastien didn’t hear Sophie yelling at first. But out of the corner of his eye he saw her waving her arms and, reluctantly, he landed the lawnmower.

“—that thing off already!”

“Okay, it’s off—what’s up, Soph?”

“Steven!” she said in her eight-year-old whine, almost stamping the ground in her agitation. “He’s in trouble. He’s—”

Sebastien sighed, then turned the mower back on. He still had another acre to mow before he could call it a day for chores and get back to his own projects.

Loud as it was, though, the mower’s engines couldn’t drown out Sophie’s screams now that he was attuned to her voice. He retracted the blades and flew towards his little sister, which wasn’t nice because the mower scared her. But this time she stood her ground.

He landed again.

“You don’t understand!” she said, and now he could see that she was on the verge of crying.

“Okay.” Sebastien hopped off the vehicle. “I’m sorry. What’s going on?”

Her blue eyes filmed over with tears. “Steven took your bot! He’s—”

“Soph, where is he?” He grabbed her shoulders. “Tell me!”

“The Pit. He’s at the Pit.”

“Go back inside, Soph. Don’t tell Mom and Dad. Deal?”

Buy the May 2015 issue of Frost Fire Worlds

Tagged with: ,