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Latest news and recent announcements can be found on the WyrdStar News page. If you'd like to keep track of the latest news, you can:
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> A summary of special offers can be found here.

Thanks for visiting!

squirrel

20 May 2016

CITY OF DECEIT artwork unveiled...

I've been plugging away for a while on City Of Deceit, the sequel to my novels Hollow Moon (2012) and Paw-Prints Of The Gods (2013). I am pleased to be able to unveil the lovely new artwork, which like the covers for the previous books was produced by Victor Habbick.

The novel itself is in the final stages of editing and the ebook should be out in June or July. Watch this space... Steph.


16 March 2016

All quiet on the WyrdStar front (again)...

Spring is slowly creeping upon us. It's still cold here on England's south coast, so as a chilly reminder that winter should be behind us Three Tales For Christmas will be available free of charge from Amazon UK / USA (and other Amazon sites) from Friday 18th March to Tuesday 22nd March (inclusive). As before, this offer starts around midnight US Pacific Standard Time, so should take effect from 8:00am in the UK.

In retailer news, the UK's Nook Store closed yesterday (15th March); existing users will have their accounts moved to Sainsbury's Entertainment on Demand store. The chances are that new Smashwords books will no longer be available. Nook's departure is yet another on the lengthening list of ebook retailers closing down: Diesel, Sony and Flipkart to name but three. The ebook market appears to be consolidating into a small handful of players: a good thing, or bad? Steph.


20 December 2015

The Watcher And The Priest - a seasonal short story for free download

MERRY CHRISTMAS! Published today is The Watcher And The Priest, this year's free seasonal short story from The Worlds of Hollow Moon. Priest Taranis is far from home and close to death, his quest to find the mythical home world of the greys having ended in disaster. Against the odds, help is at hand, but who is the mysterious stranger wearing his boots? Caught between masters and slaves, sacrifices must be made if the dark priest of destiny is to live to tell his tale...

The Watcher And The Priest is somewhat darker than previous short stories, set some years before Hollow Moon. The villainous Taranis returns in the forthcoming third novel City Of Deceit.

SPECIAL OFFER: From 25 to 29 December, Three Tales For Christmas will be available free of charge from Amazon UK, USA and other Amazon sites. Happy reading! Steph.


1 November 2015

Awesome Indies 'read to review' programme

AWESOME INDIES BOOKS has launched a 'read to review' programme, offering free ebooks in exchange for honest book reviews. Readers who sign up receive monthly updates of the Awesome Indies approved self-published books up for review. Selected ebooks are sent by email in whatever format the reader chooses (ePub, Mobi, etc.).

In return for the free ebook, readers agree to post a review on the Awesome Indies Book website, Amazon and one other review website, which can be a personal blog. All offered ebooks are Awesome Indies approved, which guarantees they'll be well-written and edited (though not necessarily to the reviewer's taste!). The first selection of ebooks on offer includes my very own novel Paw-Prints Of The Gods. Happy reading! Steph.


30 September 2015

City Of Deceit and other updates

Another smattering of minor updates. The completed manuscript (well, MS-Word file) of the much-delayed City Of Deceit has been tucked away in a virtual drawer, where it will rest for a few months before being prepared for publication. The novel is a little bit darker than the first two books and shifts the landscape of the five systems further into classic space opera territory, but for now I'll say no more. This enforced break in writing is a key part of the editing process, but does mean that this third instalment of my science-fiction series will now unfortunately not see the light until early 2016.

During this break, to help clear City Of Deceit from my mind, I've finally returned to an earlier unpublished novel, The Luck Of The Devil. This is a book I've wanted to bring up to date for a long time now: it did not have a happy life when I tried submitting it to publishers many years ago (manuscripts getting lost, etc.) and I am determined to break the curse. If all goes well, The Luck Of The Devil - a light-hearted thriller of superstition, psychiatry and the supernatural - will be published by WyrdStar late 2016.

For those of you seeking free stuff, on 1st, 8th, 15th, 22nd and 29th October - a month of Thursdays, starting tomorrow - Three Tales For Christmas will be available free of charge from Amazon UK, USA and other Amazon sites.

Finally, I am happy to report a successful move to the damn fine town of Hastings on England's south coast. There were a few traumas - water leaks, faulty central heating boilers and one of the coldest, wettest summers in years - but we're here and loving it. We've also been befriended by a neighbour's tabby cat who looks (and acts) startlingly like the extra-dimensional mischief-maker Athene from Paw-Prints Of The Gods. I'm sure it's a good omen... Happy reading! Steph.


14 June 2015

Last post from London (hopefully)

This will probably be my last update for a while. Things are finally coming to a head on the house-moving front and it is almost time for the elderly PC behind the WyrdStar website to be packed away. With any luck, the next post will come from somewhere sunny on England's south coast. I'm very much looking forward to a welcome change of scenery; as for moving day itself, not so much.

In other news, I've finally completed the first draft of the third novel from The Worlds of Hollow Moon, which despite me calling it Flood City Blues in previous posts may have become City of Deceit. Writing this has taken longer than anticipated (and it's still yet to be edited), but I remain hopeful that the ebook will see the light of day later this year.

Secondly, from 25 to 29 June, Three Tales For Christmas will be available free of charge from Amazon UK, USA and other Amazon sites. Once again, thanks for reading... Steph.


11 April 2015

Democracy: An Epitaph out now!

PUBLISHED TODAY is Democracy: An Epitaph, a short collection of political verse to mark the forthcoming UK General Election, by up-and-coming London poet Lallafa Jeltz: None Of The Above, Ode To Magna Carta, Civil Disobedience, The Road To Number Ten, Blameless Tiers and Democracy: An Epitaph.

Lallafa Jeltz is the pen-name of a London-based writer. Democracy: An Epitaph is Lallafa's first poetry collection.

The ebook is available at £0.99 / $0.99 from Amazon UK / USA and Smashwords, with more ebook retailers to follow. For further information, see the book page. Happy reading! Steph.


5 April 2015

Democracy: An Epitaph coming soon...

COMING SOON is Democracy: An Epitaph, a collection of political verse by up-and-coming London poet Lallafa Jeltz. This short anthology contains six poems to mark the forthcoming UK General Election: None Of The Above, Ode To Magna Carta, Civil Disobedience, The Road To Number Ten, Blameless Tiers and Democracy: An Epitaph. The ebook edition will be published 13 April 2015... Steph.


1 March 2015

Google Play, Flood City Blues and other updates

A smattering of minor updates. Firstly, Hollow Moon and Paw-Prints Of The Gods ebooks are now available from Google Play (see book pages for links). If you have an Android phone or tablet, the chances are you're already familiar with Google's mighty online store. Secondly, from 2 to 6 March (i.e. starting tomorrow), Three Tales For Christmas will be available free of charge from Amazon UK, USA and other Amazon sites.

The tentatively-entitled Flood City Blues, the third novel from The Worlds of Hollow Moon, is taking an age to write but should be completed sometime later this year. In the meantime, I've released A Message To Earth, a first-draft teaser from the new novel, just to prove this isn't all lies and I am actually writing something. Happy reading! Steph.


18 January 2015

Smashwords Reads 2014

Happy New Year! Yes, I know I'm almost three weeks late, but that still leaves over eleven months in which to make this year joyous. Once again, in the spirit of annual musings on the year now gone, the Smashwords Reads 2014 page presents a collection of short reviews of the indie ebooks that took my fancy in 2014, complete with Goodreads star ratings. Most are science-fiction: reviews are obviously subjective and my tastes can be a little quirky at times... Steph.


21 December 2014

GENIE And The LAMP - a seasonal short story for free download

MERRY CHRISTMAS! Published today is GENIE And The LAMP, a free seasonal short story from The Worlds of Hollow Moon. A young Angelos Inari, petty thief and self-professed laziest man in Epsilon Eridani, is offered more money than he's ever seen to help steal a top-secret corporation interrogation device. Before the night is out, the Local Ambient Megastructure Projector has surrounded him in riches and won him the girl of his dreams. Unfortunately, the mysterious Namtar has no intention of letting Inari keep his wonderful new prize...

GENIE And The LAMP is an 'origin' story for the incompetent revolutionaries Namtar and Inari. Having first appeared together in Hollow Moon, the dynamic duo will return to cause more havoc in the forthcoming third novel, tentatively titled Flood City Blues.

SPECIAL OFFER: From 24 to 28 December, Three Tales For Christmas will be available free of charge from Amazon UK, USA and other Amazon sites. Happy reading! Steph.


31 October 2014

Awesome Indies website relaunch

AWESOME INDIES, the book review site dedicated to quality self-published works, is launching its shiny new website this weekend and celebrating in style with a huge sale - 70 ebooks under $3.00! (USD) To quote Awesome Indies: "Every one of these books is worth your time. Buy them and support the independent authors who are spear-heading the new wave of quality independent fiction."

I'm pleased to announce that a new additon to Awesome Indie's stable is Hollow Moon, which joins Paw-Prints Of The Gods as an 'approved' ebook for your reading pleasure. Both titles are available for £1.99 / $2.99 from all major ebook stockists.

Finally, this month's offer on Three Tales For Christmas closes today. This ebook is available for free from Amazon UK / USA (and other Amazon sites)... Steph.


12 October 2014

Author Interview at Pebble In The Still Waters

Book blogger Jaideep Khanduja asked me to answer some questions for his Pebble In The Still Waters blog and despite getting side-tracked for a couple of months, eventually I did just that. The resulting blog was published today! On a related note, a few other Wyrd Worlds writers have also been interviewed on various blogs, the links to which can be found in the 'Author Biographies' section on the Wyrd Worlds II page. Happy reading... Steph.


28 September 2014

Short stories galore

WYRD WORLDS II is now available online at most major ebook retailers. This should be available free of charge, but if this is not the case from your preferred retailer, all popular ereader formats are also available from Smashwords.

SPECIAL OFFER: Three Tales For Christmas will be available free of charge from Amazon UK / USA (and other Amazon sites) on Friday 3rd, 10th, 17th, 24th and 31st October. This offer starts around midnight US Pacific Standard Time. The current edition of this Kindle-only anthology also includes the bonus short story A Wizard, A Sword And A King, so you get four tales for the price of three. Short stories are a great distraction for the daily commute! Unless you drive to work, that is (please don't read and drive). Enjoy... Steph.


20 September 2014

Wyrd Worlds II anthology out now!

PUBLISHED TODAY is Wyrd Worlds II, the work of an international collection of science fiction and fantasy writers, independent authors old and new, who have come together through the book recommendations site Goodreads to contribute to this anthology. This ebook contains a bumper 19 short stories from 17 independent authors from around the world, encompassing a wide range of science fiction and fantasy. Here lurks tales of the future, steampunk and time travel; of magical realms and fantastical deeds; and of things so weird they defy categorisation. The original Wyrd Worlds rode upon a new wave of indie collaborations; and now we're back!

The anthology is available free of charge from Smashwords, with more ebook retailers to follow. For further information on this book, see the anthology's book page.

Wyrd Worlds II includes a new Hollow Moon story, Rock Of Ages, available online. Steph.


31 August 2014

Wyrd Worlds II coming soon...

WYRD WORLDS II, the sequel to last year's anthology, is on its way! If all goes to plan, the ebook will available from Smashwords from 21 September, before being rolled out at other retailers over the following weeks. This collection contains a bumper 19 stories from 17 indie authors from around the world, encompassing a wide range of science fiction and fantasy: from tales of the future, steampunk worlds and time travel, tales of magical realms and fantastical deeds, to tales that are just weird and defy categorisation. Watch this space... Steph.


31 July 2014

Goodreads giveaway winners

CONGRATULATIONS to the winners of the Goodreads giveaway for Hollow Moon and Paw-Prints Of The Gods in paperback. Around a thousand entries per title were received for the five copies on offer.

The readers who will each receive a copy of Hollow Moon are: Ayman Mohamed Farag Bashandy (Cairo, Egypt), Julyn Cataquiz (Tayabas City, Philippines), Mohamed Ben Taouil (Marrakech, Morocco), Areta Gedutyte (Cavan, Ireland) and Beatriz Mira Godinho Santos (Lisbon, Portugal).

The readers who will each receive a copy of Paw-Prints Of The Gods are: Vennela Indrakanti (Bangalore, India), Alexe Alexandra (Cremona, Italy), Kel Wheeldon (Springfield Lakes, Australia), Tony Drummond (Hemel Hempstead, England) and Tanu Awana (Noida, India).

Thank you to all who entered. Books are due to be posted week commencing 4 August and so should be with the winners by the end of the month. See here for post-giveaway offer on ebooks.


1 July 2014

Goodreads giveaway!

TO MARK THE RELEASE of Hollow Moon and Paw-Prints Of The Gods in paperback, five copies of each book are being given away via the social media website for books and book-lovers that is Goodreads. This giveaway launches today and runs until 31 July 2014.

HOLLOW MOON - Join intrepid young heroine Ravana O'Brien in a fast-paced and witty science-fiction mystery of interstellar intrigue. As the dark priest of destiny returns from the dead, Ravana and friends find themselves on an incredible planet-hopping adventure into the shady world of politics, music and rebellion!

PAW-PRINTS OF THE GODS - Ravana finds herself on another wild adventure with a mysterious little orphan, a cake-obsessed secret agent and a god-like watcher who is maybe also a cat. The cyberclone monks are preparing to meet their saviours. But nobody believes in prophecies anymore, do they?

But there's more! Three Tales For Christmas for the Kindle will be available free of charge from Amazon UK / USA (and other Amazon sites) on Wednesday 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd and 30th July. As before, this is timed around US Pacific Standard Time, probably to confuse us folk in the UK and elsewhere. Happy reading! Steph.


29 June 2014

Hollow Moon and Paw-Prints Of The Gods out in paperback

HOLLOW MOON and PAW-PRINTS OF THE GODS, tales of science-fiction mystery and adventure for young adults and adults young-at-heart, are out in paperback! The books are available via the wonders of 'print on demand' from Amazon UK / USA (Hollow Moon) and Amazon UK / USA (Paw-Prints Of The Gods). These trade paperbacks (i.e. better quality than mass-market paperbacks) have a recommended retail price of £9.99 (UK) / $16.99 (USA).

Paperbacks traditionally carry quotes of those who inspired the author in some way. I found it a challenge to select something that reflected my influences, but which also said something about the novel itself. Here is the quote I finally chose for this new paperback of Hollow Moon:

"Could it be possible that after thousands of years of struggling in the darkness we are about to discover, in the light of the new dawn, our purpose and destiny?" - Dandridge M. Cole, Beyond Tomorrow (1965).

For Paw-Prints Of The Gods, I chose:

"It is not our fault that the old books and traditions of human history exhibit so many absurdities." - Erich Von Däniken, Chariots Of The Gods? (1969).

Meanwhile, the ebook price of Paw-Prints Of The Gods has been matched with that of Hollow Moon at £1.99 (UK) / $2.99 (USA). Ebooks are available from a wide range of online stores, which now includes Txtr.

A Goodreads 'giveaway' will be announced shortly. Thanks for reading! Steph.


26 May 2014

All quiet on the WyrdStar front

It's been a couple of months since I last posted an update. This isn't through a lack of activity from yours truly, but rather because there's feverish work going on in the background that has kept me busy elsewhere. All I will say for now is Hollow Moon is being prepared for a paperback release very soon, with Paw-Prints Of The Gods to follow. I hope to celebrate this through a book giveaway on Goodreads, so watch this space!

In other news, the fine folks at Awesome Indies have given their website a facelift. This now looks very slick indeed and puts many publisher's websites to shame (including probably this one), with lots of information about showcased books, plus a new blog offering entertaining content from and about the featured authors. Awesome Indies is on a mission to find the best of independent fiction. If you're in the mood for something different, why not pay them a visit? Steph.


30 March 2014

Short Stories (and goodbye to Diesel)

THE WYRDSTAR MOBILE mini website for The Worlds of Hollow Moon has finally been updated to include online versions of the short stories In The Lap Of The Gods (from Wyrd Worlds) and the 2013 Christmas short story A Wizard, A Sword And A King. The mobile website also offers chapter excerpts from the novels, all in a no-frills format which can be read by the majority of mobile devices.

Meanwhile, to banish the woe of Wednesdays throughout April, Three Tales For Christmas will be available free of charge from Amazon UK / USA (and other Amazon sites) on Wednesday 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd and 30th April. As before, this offer starts around midnight US Pacific Standard Time, so should take effect from 8:00am in the UK. The current edition of this Kindle-only anthology includes A Wizard, A Sword And A King as a bonus short story! (So there's actually Four Tales...)

Finally, another ebook store has closed its doors: this time, Diesel; existing customers should see the website for details to download (and thus retain) ebooks previously bought. The ebook market remains relatively new and is still evolving, but it's sad to see established names fade away. Steph.

The WORLDS OF HOLLOW MOON Mobile Website is at: www.wyrdstar.co.uk/mobile/.


9 March 2014

WyrdStar ebooks now available at Scribd

WYRDSTAR EBOOKS, along with all other Smashwords titles, are now available from Scribd, the world's largest online library and ebook lending service. Ebooks can be borrowed at no extra charge by Scribd subscribers, or bought and downloaded in a similar fashion as from other online stores. Scribd links have been added to website book pages.

In other retailer news, the Sony Reader Store is closing on 20 March, after which existing customers will transfer to Kobo. Sony's pioneering work in establishing ebooks and dedicated ereaders lends a touch of sadness to this news. My thanks go to those readers who have found WyrdStar ebooks through Sony over the years. Steph.


2 March 2014

Smashwords 'Read an Ebook Week'

THE SMASHWORDS 'Read an Ebook Week' promotion kicks off today! As part of this event, the witty space-opera mysteries that are Hollow Moon (RRP $2.99) and Paw-Prints Of The Gods (RRP $3.99) are available at 50% off until 8 March (see special voucher code on the Smashwords book pages for details). The promotion has lots of other offers from the authors and publishers who release works through this site, so why not check it out? Steph.


19 February 2014

In Memory of Dandridge MacFarlan Cole

Some of you who have read my 2012 novel Hollow Moon may know that the asteroid colony ship at the centre of the story is named after Dandridge MacFarlan Cole, American aerospace engineer, futurist, lecturer and author who was born this day in 1921 in Sandusky, Ohio. Cole was an avid proponent of humankind's future in space and wrote several books and papers on the subject. As early as 1953, before the United States had a space program, he predicted a manned moon landing by 1970. It was in 1953 that Cole, after seeing action in the Second World War followed by a spell teaching physics and astronomy, took a job with the Martin Company in Baltimore; a post that later would see him help to design the Titan II, the launch vehicle for Gemini space capsules. His career in space similarly reached new heights and in 1960 Cole became a consulting engineer at the General Electric Missile and Space Division at Valley Forge Space Technology Center, Philadelphia.

Cole often promoted the idea of colonising the asteroids. The 'planetoids', as he argued they should be called, could be hollowed out or inflated to create a bubbleworld with habitable space on the inside (see illustration) and he envisaged the resulting space arks orbiting within the solar system or even being sent out on interstellar expeditions. He and artist Roy Scarfo collaborated on the book Beyond Tomorrow: The Next Fifty Years in Space (1965), a wonderful vision of future advancements in space exploration, space development and colonisation, all based on scientific feasability at that time. Dandridge Cole's visionary ideas heavily influenced the speculative science behind my science-fiction stories and it is not for nothing that the hollow asteroid at the centre of the story is named in his honour. Dandridge MacFarlan Cole died tragically young (age 44) on October 29, 1965 at King of Prussia, Pennsylvania. Steph.


4 January 2014

Smashwords Reads 2013

A belated Happy New Year to all! In the spirit of yearly round-ups, the new Smashwords Reads 2013 website page lists the indie ebooks that took my fancy in 2013, with a brief summary, review and my Goodreads ratings. Most of these are science-fiction, with a few others thrown into the mix. I hope you find this list interesting! Steph.


24 December 2013

Awesome Indies Holiday Bonanza Ebook Sale

The fine folks at Awesome Indies are running a Christmas sale from 26 December (Boxing Day) to 30 December. The sale features 60 books, all Awesome Indies approved, with US $2 or $3 off their normal price. Some are free; most are 99c. To quote Awesome Indies: "Every one of these books is worth your time. Buy them and support the independent authors who are spear-heading the new wave of quality independent fiction. Please enjoy our smorgasbord of cheap ebooks while they last!"

As part of this special offer, Paw-Prints Of The Gods will be available for the knock-down price of $0.99 from Amazon USA, with similar reductions at Amazon UK and other Amazon sites. Yes, I know I should have wrapped up this announcement with the news item below (dates have been updated in the previous post) but my organisational skills have become a bit frazzled in the run-up to Christmas... Have a good one, folks. Steph.


22 December 2013

Christmas special offers

Merry Christmas! WyrdStar is running a couple of special offers for Kindle owners over the festive period. From 24 to 30 December, Paw-Prints Of The Gods will be available for the knock-down price of $0.99 from Amazon USA, with similar reductions at Amazon UK and other Amazon sites.

Meanwhile, from 24 to 28 December, Three Tales For Christmas will be available free of charge from Amazon UK / USA (and other Amazon sites). As before, this offer starts around midnight US Pacific Standard Time, so should take effect from 8:00am in the UK. Steph.


15 December 2013

A Wizard, A Sword And A King - a seasonal short story for free download

PUBLISHED TODAY is A Wizard, A Sword And A King, a free seasonal short story and a prequel to Paw-Prints Of The Gods. On the moon of Avalon, Alpha Centauri, the young orphan Artorius is resigned to spending Christmas alone, wandering the snowy streets of Londinium just as a new series of the bloodthirsty holovid show Gods Of Avalon is about to start. As the medieval tournament gets under way, he finds that the alien-worshipping nuns encamped in the fake Temple of Mithras are taking more notice of him than usual. Not only that, but the man playing wizard Merlin was not the usual company cyberclone!

A Wizard, A Sword And A King is available as a WyrdStar pdf and is also now included in Smashwords editions of Paw-Prints Of The Gods. Readers who previously bought this novel from Smashwords can download all subsequent updates at no extra cost.

To see how these and other stories fit together, see the updated Worlds Of Hollow Moon page.


4 December 2013

News snippets

A smattering of minor news items today: The 'you set the price' special offer for Paw-Prints Of The Gods at Smashwords (normally $3.99) and Hollow Moon at Smashwords (normally $2.99) will come to an end on Sunday 8 December, so grab a bargain while it lasts! Secondly, this year's seasonal short story, A Wizard, A Sword And A King, is a bit delayed but should be out on Sunday 15 December as a WyrdStar pdf ebook.

Finally, the latest addition to the WyrdStar website reveals all (well, some) of the movie influences that made their presence felt whilst I was writing Paw-Prints Of The Gods; some influences are obvious, others maybe not. (This page is actually just an excuse to plug the near-forgotten Hammer film Moon Zero Two, which deserves wider recognition in the annals of sci-fi movie history.) I hope you find it of interest. Thanks for reading! Steph.


15 November 2013

Officially Awesome

Firstly, Paw-Prints Of The Gods has been approved for inclusion in Awesome Indies, a website which showcases the best of independent fiction. Books listed: "have been evaluated by industry professionals against specific criteria for quality fiction and deemed to be of the same quality of craftmanship as books published by mainstream publishing houses." Given all that, I'm quite pleased to have made the grade! I hope to update the ebook cover soon to show the 'Awesome Indies Approved' badge of honour.

Secondly, WyrdStar books are now being shipped to Flipkart, the India-based online retailer of books, music, movies and lots more. Those of you who have read Hollow Moon will understand why I'm quite excited about getting into the Indian ebook market! Links will be added to this website as the various titles become available.

Finally, this year's Christmas short story is on its way. A Wizard, A Sword And A King is a prequel of sorts to Paw-Prints Of The Gods, where the young orphan Artorius finds himself spending Christmas on the Londinium holovid set. The hit holovid reality show Gods Of Avalon is about to start, only things aren't quite what they seem...

NOTE: This news item was edited 17 November 2013. Steph.


21 October 2013

Kobo UK ebook store and Amazon free offers

WyrdStar ebooks are currently unavailable from the Kobo online store to UK customers. For those of you who missed the story, Kobo and UK retailer WHSmith took umbrage at certain items of 'adult' literature that they had previously accepted via the usual self-publishing channels, with the result that all self-published titles have been removed from their virtual shelves in the UK. WyrdStar does not publish such literature, but our ebooks have been removed along with the rest. Kobo has assured affected independent publishers that normal service will be resumed (for most) as soon as possible.

Meanwhile, a series of special offers are scheduled for Three Tales For Christmas, which will be available free of charge from Amazon UK / USA (and other Amazon sites) over a month of Sundays! Or to put it another way, on Sunday 27 October, 3 November, 10 November, 17 November and 24 November. As before, these offers start around midnight US Pacific Standard Time, so should take effect from 8:00am in the UK. Steph.


12 October 2013

New book reviews and ebook price changes

Books by WyrdStar have received some nice coverage recently in the blogosphere (the internet does have some mighty strange words). Writer, blogger and reviewer for Awesome Indies D L Morrese wrote the first review for the recently published Paw-Prints Of The Gods (see D L Morrese on 'Paw-Prints Of The Gods'), though not before also giving Hollow Moon an equally-cracking write-up (see D L Morrese on 'Hollow Moon').

PRICE CHANGES: Following the release of Paw-Prints Of The Gods, ebook pricing has been reviewed, as follows:

> Paw-Prints Of The Gods is £2.99 / $3.99 at major ebook retailers. The 'you set the price' special offer at Smashwords, announced at the book's launch, will remain in place for the foreseeable future!
> Hollow Moon is reduced to a new price of £1.99 / $2.99 at major ebook retailers. Again, the 'you set the price' special offer at Smashwords will remain in place.
> Three Tales For Christmas (Amazon only) is reduced to a new price of £0.77 / $0.99 - and thanks to the wonders of Amazon's 'Select' scheme, will occasionally be free of charge (watch this space).
> Wyrd Worlds and the single-story editions of 'Worlds of Hollow Moon' short stories remain free of charge.

Going back to reviews, the Indie Book Reviewer blog has a nice write-up (and an interview with yours truly) about Wyrd Worlds. This is one of several author interviews done by contributors, links to which can be found with author biographies section of the WyrdStar book page. If you haven't already got a copy of this damn fine anthology, download it now! Steph.


29 September 2013

Paw-Prints Of The Gods out now!

PUBLISHED TODAY is Paw-Prints Of The Gods, the sequel to Hollow Moon! On the forbidding planet of Falsafah, archaeologists are on the verge of a discovery that will shake the five systems to the core. Ravana O'Brien finds herself on another wild adventure with a mysterious little orphan, a cake-obsessed secret agent and a god-like watcher who is maybe also a cat. The cyberclone monks are preparing to meet their saviours. But nobody believes in prophecies anymore, do they?

AMAZON: Paw-Prints Of The Gods is available from Amazon UK / USA at a recommended retail price of £2.99 / $3.99 - and will soon be available from other ebook retailers.

SMASHWORDS SPECIAL OFFER: A limited-time offer is currently running at Smashwords. For two weeks, both Paw-Prints Of The Gods and Hollow Moon are available via an exclusive 'you set the price' deal! Happy reading... Steph.


7 September 2013

Wyrd Worlds anthology out now!

WYRD WORLDS is a new anthology of science-fiction and fantasy short stories by indie authors brought together by the social network Goodreads. The collection, which contains 14 stories from 12 writers from around the world, includes a wide range of speculative fiction, from slices of fantasy and time travel to steampunk and science-fiction. The tales vary widely, yet are all born from the same drive to create, share ideas and above all to entertain!

This collection includes a new Hollow Moon short story, In The Lap Of The Gods.

Wyrd Worlds is currently free of charge available at Smashwords, with more ebook retailers to follow. For further information on this book, see the Wyrd Worlds book page. Thanks! Steph.


13 August 2013

Hollow Moon offer at Amazon

For the next couple of weeks (or longer if the fancy takes me), Hollow Moon is £0.77 / $0.99 from Amazon USA / UK (and other Amazon sites), reduced from the usual recommended retail price of £2.99 / $3.99. Enjoy! Steph.


1 July 2013

Smashwords Summer/Winter Sale Promotion

For one month only, thousands of Smashwords authors and publishers are providing huge discounts on ebooks. Hot on the heels of June's special offer on Amazon, Hollow Moon at Smashwords will be half price throughout July, reduced from the usual recommended retail price of $3.99, as part of the annual Smashwords Summer/Winter Sale. The special promotion catalogue goes live on 1 July (US Pacific time) on the Smashwords home page, where readers can browse what is on offer and search by coupon levels and catagories. Seek out new authors today! Steph.


22 June 2013

Late June Offers on Amazon

For one week only from today, Hollow Moon is half price from Amazon USA / UK (and other Amazon sites), reduced from the usual recommended retail price of £2.99 / $3.99.

Secondly, for no other reason than we're currently as far away from Christmas as can possibly be, Three Tales For Christmas, my science-fiction short-story collection for the Kindle, is free on Tuesday 25 June and Thursday 27 June from Amazon UK / USA (and other Amazon sites). As usual, this offer starts around midnight US Pacific Standard Time, so should take effect from 8:00am in the UK. Steph.


15 June 2013

WyrdStar Mobile Website

Mobile-friendly webpages have now been added to the WyrdStar website. The WyrdStar Mobile mini website accompanies the Hollow Moon page and offers online versions of all three short stories published to date, plus chapter excerpts from the novel itself, all in a no-frills format that can be read by the vast majority of mobile devices (it even works on the basic browser of my Kobo Touch!). The sequel to Hollow Moon and a new short story is to be published late summer.

The HOLLOW MOON WyrdStar Mobile Website can be found at: www.wyrdstar.co.uk/mobile/.


21 May 2013

New edition of Hollow Moon out now

The new ebook edition of Hollow Moon, which has had both an editorial refresh and new cover artwork by Victor Habbick, is now available from Smashwords and Amazon USA / UK (recommended price £2.99 / $3.99). The new Smashwords edition, soon to be available from Kobo, iBooks, Sony, B&N and other retailers, includes a bonus in the shape of the short story It's A Blunderful Life (previously only available for the Kindle, in Three Tales for Christmas).

Hollow Moon is a fast-paced and witty space opera mystery that tells the tale of Ravana, a teenage girl who has to grow up fast when she and her father become embroiled in a plot of interstellar intrigue. For further details and the latest news, please see the Hollow Moon book page.


5 May 2013

Sneak preview of new ebook artwork!

I've been plugging away for a while on Paw-Prints Of The Gods, due for publication sometime this summer. This is a sequel to my 2012 novel Hollow Moon, which itself will be getting an editorial refresh and a second edition release very soon. The big news is that both ebooks will feature some lovely new artwork [note: pictures archived] by Victor Habbick. I am so pleased with these I couldn't resist publishing a sneak preview... Steph.


23 March 2013

Easter Offers

WyrdStar has two special offers this Easter. Firstly, Hollow Moon is for a short period available for just $0.99 at Smashwords using discount voucher PW26X, in an offer that runs until Monday 1 April 2013.

Secondly, despite the official arrival of spring, it's snowing here in London so it seems not entirely inappropriate to run a free offer on Three Tales For Christmas on Easter Monday (1 April) from Amazon UK / USA (and other Amazon sites). As before, this offer starts around midnight US Pacific Standard Time, so should take effect from 8:00am in the UK.

This free offer on Three Tales for Christmas will be repeated on St. George's Day (23 April), which coincidentally is also the birthday of Nobel Prize physicist Max Planck and of course playwright William Shakespeare. I like to think that the Bard of Stratford would be pleased that The Tempest inspired the classic 1956 film Forbidden Planet, thus paving the way for the glories of space opera!


3 March 2013

Hollow Moon and 'Read an Ebook Week' at Smashwords

Hollow Moon at Smashwords is this week available at half price (see special voucher code details) as part of Smashwords' annual 'Read an Ebook Week' promotion, which has lots of offers from the authors and publishers who release works through this site. The sequel to Hollow Moon has taken longer to write than expected, but a first draft of Paw-Prints of the Gods is now awaiting editing and should be out sometime this summer. Meanwhile, I also have the WyrdStar mobile site to finish. Busy days! Steph.


6 January 2013

Smashwords Reads 2012

A belated Happy New Year to all! Since entering the world of 'indie' publishing, I have read a fair few Smashwords ebook titles on my trusty Kobo Touch. The Smashwords Reads 2012 page lists the ebooks that took my fancy in 2012, with a brief summary, review and my Goodreads ratings. I hope it may prove useful in finding your next read... Steph.


22 December 2012

Merry Christmas!

Christmas 2012 looms near, despite the attempts of those who incorrectly believed the Mayans predicated the world was due to end yesterday. If you postponed Christmas shopping on the off-chance that armageddon would render it unnecessary, I'm afraid you have left it rather late to buy gifts for your nearest and dearest. May I recommend an ereader and some indie fiction?

For those of you who unwrap a brand-new Kindle this Christmas and thus find yourselves suddenly eager to fill it up with ebooks, Three Tales For Christmas will again be available for free on Christmas Day and Boxing Day from Amazon UK / USA. As before, this offer starts around midnight US Pacific Standard Time, so should take effect from 8:00am in the UK.

Many thanks to all the readers who have come to WyrdStar in 2012. Merry Christmas! Steph.


9 December 2012

European Space Expo

On Thursday 6 December I visited the European Space Expo at Horse Guards Parade, London (which conveniently is barely five minutes from where I work). This event was to showcase the European Space Programme's projects for satellite navigation and Earth monitoring, but also featured a series of talks on all things space. Thursday saw 'Astronomy from your sofa', presented by astrophysicist Chris Lintott (co-presenter of BBC TV's The Sky At Night), which was a fascinating hour on space exploration past and present. This was one lunch hour well spent! Read more at the UK Space Agency news page.

The Kindle ebook Three Tales For Christmas will be available for free on 10 December from Amazon UK / USA. This 24-hour special offer starts approximately midnight US Pacific Standard Time, so should take effect from 8:00am in the UK.

Update: A short while after writing this post I learned the sad news regarding the passing of Sir Patrick Moore, astronomer, writer and host of The Sky At Night. He was an inspiration to amateur astronomers everywhere (including myself) and I have fond memories of reading his science-fiction for young readers back when I was a child. I still have a copy of Killer Comet on my bookshelf at home. May his spirit rest amongst the stars. Steph.


1 December 2012

Out today - Three Tales For Christmas!

Released today is Three Tales For Christmas, a short-story ebook collection for the Kindle (Amazon UK / USA). This features a trio of seasonal tales set in the worlds of Hollow Moon: To Dance Amongst The Stars, where poor down-trodden slave Ganesa meets dashing space captain Hanuman (previously published December 2011); Merry Christmas, Mister Wolf, about Christmas at an exclusive ski resort and malfunctioning robot wolves; and It's A Blunderful Life, where a mysterious woman shows desperate fugitive Fenris the greatest blunders of his life.

Also published today is the free single-story ebook Merry Christmas, Mister Wolf, which is available from Smashwords. Both this story and It's A Blunderful Life are also available as free WyrdStar pdfs. Enjoy! Steph.


18 November 2012

Forthcoming Christmas releases from WyrdStar Books

As previously announced, a seasonal Hollow Moon tale called Merry Christmas, Mister Wolf is on its way! Christmas at the exclusive ski resort of Kirchel gets Grimm when robot security wolves are let loose with metal heads full of fairy tales. However, WyrdStar is delivering an extra little present this year, as well as a special treat for Kindle fans. Watch this space!


21 October 2012

Hollow Moon - Hallowe'en Ten-Day Sale!

"In the heart of London near Tower Hell, hear Bethnal Scream where demons dwell, the Frightsbridge killers stalk the town, more terrible than the Camden Clown..." Or so my planned introduction to a Danse Macabre gig once went; in the end we didn't use it on the night, as the rest of the band were of the opinion that it made no sense whatsoever to those who did not know the London tube map. Clowns are scary, by the way. "...St. John's Blood the demons sought, carrying STDs the Barons Caught, in Hyde Dark Corners please beware, of the killer squirrels in Leicester Scare!"

Anyway, to make a short news item long, I have a soft spot for the spooky tradition that is All Hallows' Eve. Hollow Moon is science-fiction but nevertheless has its fair share of nail-biting moments, so to celebrate Hallowe'en WyrdStar is running a ten-day ebook sale. Hollow Moon at Smashwords is now available for the scarily-low price of $0.99! This offer extends to the Amazon US / UK Kindle store and meets a grisly end on 31 October 2012... Steph.


25 August 2012

Website Update

The WyrdStar website has gone through a few minor changes to try and make it a bit more like that of a proper writer. The changes bring more information on the Worlds of Hollow Moon, plus an attempt at a biographical page for yours truly. Inviting the squirrel to WyrdStar HQ was probably a bad idea. Steph.


4 August 2012

WyrdStar Updates

The old Prozakville website closes down today; if you're reading this, then I assume you: (a) managed to find your way okay to the new WyrdStar site; or (b) are blithely unaware there ever was another website. Either way, welcome!

After distribution problems, Hollow Moon is finally available from the Sony Reader Store (see links on the Hollow Moon page). I would like to take this opportunity to thank my readers who use the Sony store, who have downloaded more copies of the Cinderella-esque To Dance Amongst The Stars than those of any other bookstore apart from Smashwords itself. It seems odd to talk of pantomime science-fiction in August but while I am on the subject, the first draft of a Hollow Moon tale for Christmas 2012 is now lurking in the memory modules of my MacBook. Tentatively entitled Merry Christmas, Mister Wolf, this free short story is due to be unleashed in December. Watch this space! Steph.


15 July 2012

Reviews for Hollow Moon and website update

My novel Hollow Moon has received a couple of blog reviews this month, one from Zigzag Timeline and another from POD People. The Zigzag Timeline blog also features an Author Interview from yours truly!

WEBSITE UPDATE: The www.prozakville.co.uk domain will no longer host this website from the beginning of August, which is to move to a new (yet spookily similar) website hosted under the www.wyrdstar.co.uk domain. Both old and new websites will run side-by-side for a very short period. Following this change, the above web addresses will continue to work and redirect users to the correct pages on the new website, but users of the Prozakville News RSS feed will need to update their RSS reader to a new URL. Further updates will follow! Steph.


17 June 2012

Hollow Moon - now available for Kindle, Kobo and Apple ebook readers

The Hollow Moon ebook is now available from Amazon's Kindle store, the Kobo store and Apple's iBooks, with other retailers to follow later this month. Further details and links can be found on the Hollow Moon page. Steph.


28 May 2012

Hollow Moon - now available at Smashwords

The ebook edition of the novel Hollow Moon is now available from Smashwords, price $2.99. Hollow Moon is a fast-paced and witty space opera mystery that tells the tale of Ravana, a teenage girl who has to grow up fast when she and her father become embroiled in a plot of interstellar intrigue. What began as a minor escapade to rescue her electric cat soon leads to an incredible adventure into the shady dystopian world of politics, kidnappings and school band competitions. Hollow Moon is an adventure for all who relish a dose of humour and practical astrophysics with their fantasy! For further details and the latest news, please see the Hollow Moon page on the WyrdStar website.

To mark the publication of Hollow Moon, the short story To Dance Amongst The Stars ebook is now available free of charge from Smashwords. This price change will hopefully be taken up by other ebook retailers over the coming months.


14 January 2012

To Dance Amongst The Stars - now available at leading ebook stores

To Dance Amongst The Stars ebook edition is now available from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Apple's iBooks and other ebook stores (prices vary). Visitors to the Hollow Moon page on the WyrdStar website can download the ebook free of charge from Smashwords until the end of February 2012, using voucher code HP76F (normal price $0.99).


11 December 2011

To Dance Amongst The Stars - a seasonal short story for free download

To Dance Amongst The Stars is a seasonal science-fiction fairy tale available free from WyrdStar, the new Prozakville venture into ebook publishing. Can the poor, down-trodden kitchen slave Ganesa find a Prince Charming in the shape of young, dashing space captain Hanuman? As they meet for the first time on the dance floor at the American Embassy's Christmas Ball, she is the first to admit he's not exactly her type in this tongue-in-cheek pastiche of Cinderella.


6 August 2011

Hollow Moon - a novel

Hollow Moon is a fast-paced and witty space opera mystery that tells the tale of Ravana, a teenage girl who has to grow up fast when she and her father become embroiled in a plot of interstellar intrigue. What began as a minor escapade to rescue her electric cat soon leads to an incredible adventure into the shady dystopian world of politics, kidnappings and school band competitions. Hollow Moon is an adventure for all who relish a dose of humour and practical astrophysics with their fantasy!

Update (28 May 2012): Hollow Moon is now available as an ebook - please see the Hollow Moon page for details.


16 April 2011

Haunted Honeymoon - a new name for Danse Macabre

After taking a break from performing, Danse Macabre are now planning a relaunch under the new name of Haunted Honeymoon. We hope to be back on a stage near you soon with a new sound and direction...


1 November 2010

The Luck of the Devil - a novel

My ultimate dream is to be a published writer of commercial fiction. Late this year I finally finished writing and editing The Luck of the Devil, a light-hearted thriller set in a contemporary world of superstition, psychiatry and the supernatural. The story centres around Susan Jones, a young intersexed woman under the care of her psychiatrist Doctor Mordussen, who is manipulating her through his own attempts to get to grips with a strange and shared medieval legacy. The story tells of Susan's self-discovery as she battles personal doubt, suppressed memories and Mordussen's meddling with black magic.


21 April 2010

Worcestershire Sauce by Danse Macabre promotional CD release

Prozakville Records are to issue a limited number of the Danse Macabre two-track CD Worcestershire Sauce, which also features the song You Stole My Heart (So I Stole Your Leg) alongside the eponymous saucy ditty. The free promotional CD will be available from 1 May 2010 and the release will coincide with Danse Macabre's performance at the Marr's Bar, Worcester, at the finale of the Worcester leg of the 'Help for Haiti' tour.


30 March 2010

Eve of Redemption by Steph Bennion published by Reluctant Press

Eve of Redemption tells the tale of Eve, who is no ordinary woman; a sultry new identity had given wise-cracking warrior Everard a whole new way to pursue life, love, adventure and revenge! This is my second attempt at a novella and this time I wrote one specifically with Reluctant Press in mind; a California-based publisher which specialises in transgender-themed novellas aimed at an adult readership.

For a long time I have harboured ambitions of being a proper writer, but to date my literary output (outside of writing lyrics for the band) has been limited to the occasional magazine article, a dreadful three-month stint on a local newspaper during the 1990s, a few unpublished novels and a vast amount of uncredited policy documentation for a certain government department. Eve of Redemption is fairly representative of my style and I hope it reflects the dark humour which often crops up in my writing.

There is a free preview on the Reluctant Press website (this bookstore is for readers aged 18+ only!) - where a download version of the book can be purchased, while the book proper is available from Mags Inc., price $10.00.


All content (c) Steph Bennion, WyrdStar and Danse Macabre 2007-2017.

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