Hadrosaur’s Weird Westerns on Sale

I have long been a fan of weird westerns. My love of the genre started in middle school when I discovered the television series The Wild Wild West. Later, when I started writing, I wished I could write stories with a similar flavor. My dream came true when I discovered David B. Riley’s magazine Trails: Intriguing Stories of the Old West. I started submitting stories to him and he started publishing them. Later, he would publish my story “The Persian Witch” in an anthology titled Trails: Intriguing Stories of the Wild West. That story would go on to become the first chapter of my novel Owl Dance.

What’s more, when I was publishing my magazines Hadrosaur Tales and Tales of the Talisman, I was open to stories of any speculative genre and weird westerns were always welcome. David Riley submitted several of his stories to me. In his stories, we saw California as a battleground between Nick Mephistopheles (aka Satan) and Ah Puch (aka the Mayan god of Death). Caught between them was Miles O’Malley, a drifter who becomes a (really bad) barber and ultimately a secret service agent. Once I was in the position to publish books, I was happy to publish more works of David’s in this universe. One of the books below also features stories by my longtime cover artist, Laura Givens. She’s a great fan of weird westerns and has done much over the years to bring Ramon, Fatemeh, and the rest of the Clockwork Legion to life on the covers of my books. Her Chin Song Ping stories are a delight and you don’t want to miss them.

The annual Smashwords Summer/Winter Sale is underway. It gets its name because where I live in the northern hemisphere, readers are loading up their e-readers for great beach reading and vacations. In the southern hemisphere, it’s the middle of winter and people are spending time in a warm and cozy place reading. This is a great opportunity to offer our selection of Weird Western books for half off the cover price! Read on for more details!

Legends of the Dragon Cowboys brings you two weird western adventures by authors David B. Riley and Laura Givens. Their heroes ride boldly out of the Far East to find their way in a mythic land of danger, romance, and adventure.

In “The Venerable Travels of Ling Fung” by David B. Riley, a wandering businessman encounters a Mayan god, crooked enterprises and Yeti, the Abominable Snowman, when all he really wants is to open a gun store. Ling Fung is not any ordinary Chinese entrepreneur–he’s highly skilled in Kung Fu and he can shoot good, too. While his heart is set on business, providence seems to have other plans for him.

Laura Givens brings wily acrobat Chin Song Ping to the Wild West in search of adventure and fortune. He finds little fortune, but plenty of adventure. Chin Song Ping is a scoundrel, a gambler and a trouble magnet. His heart of gold lands him in schemes to outwit would-be gods, cannibal ghosts, insane robots, Voodoo despots and the ultimate evil–bureaucrats. But he is a romantic, and the love of his life is the true treasure he seeks. The odds are always against him but if he survives he will become the Western legend he always was in his own mind.

The Wild West just got a lot wilder!

Midwest Book Review says, “These two Western novellas are seasoned a dash of exotic adventure, featuring cowboy protagonists who hail from the Far East and pursue their dreams in the tough-as-nails frontier. Riveting from first page to last, Legends of the Dragon Cowboys is enthusiastically recommended for public library collections and connoisseurs of the genre!”

Get the book for 50% off at: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/751811

Fallen Angel is the story of Mabel, an angel from Hell, who accompanies General Grant’s army during the last days of the Civil War only to discover that Martians are watching the Earth with envious eyes and slowly drawing their plans against us. Not only that, but Mabel has to contend with her evil sister, who wants to have humans for dinner. Although Mabel and Grant get the upper hand before the war ends, the battle of good against evil isn’t won so quickly. Several years later, in San Francisco, Mabel just wants to have fun with her friend Miles O’Malley, when she discovers her sister and the Martians have joined forces with a college fraternity and humanity may be on the dinner menu.

Christine Wald-Hopkins of The Arizona Daily Star writes, “This quirky new novel by Tucsonan David B. Riley is a cross-genre romp, religious fantasy meets historical fiction, science fiction, zombie ‘Animal House.'”

Get the book for 50% off at: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/924099

My Fantasy Circle of Five

A couple of weeks ago, Paige Addams tagged me to share five fantasy characters I’d love to spend time with.

Fantasy Circle

What’s more, I’ll be participating in the Time Traveler’s Outpost at the 4th Avenue Trunk Show in Tucson, Arizona, hosted by the Tucson Steampunk Society today. The event runs from noon to 6pm. Visit http://www.fourthavenue.org/4th-avenue-trunk-show/ for details. Tomorrow, I’m the guest of the Tucson Steampunk Society’s Book Club where we’ll be discussing my novel Owl Dance at Antigone Books starting at 3:30pm. If you’re in Tucson, I hope you’ll drop by one of these two great events.

In keeping with the wild west steampunk theme, I decided to pick the five western or steampunk characters I’d most like to spend time with. Clicking on the images will take you to Amazon where you can find a book or DVD featuring the character.

Agatha Heterodyne

When we meet Agatha, she’s a student at Transylvania Polygnostic University with a drive to create, but the worst luck in the world. Over time, she learns her true heritage and unlocks the inner spark that allows her to create amazing devices. The story is still continuing and she’s now fighting for the city and castle she inherited from her fore bearers, a line of mad geniuses called the Heterodynes.

Over the course of the comics, it’s clear that Agatha has a sense of fun and she’s great with machines. As someone who likes to tinker and build things, I would enjoy comparing notes with her and see what trouble we could engineer. As an added bonus, I love a good cup of coffee and at one point in the comic, Agatha builds a machine that brews the perfect cup!

Captain Nemo

Captain Nemo was created by Jules Verne for the novel 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. I’m recommending the wonderful comic League of Extraordinary Gentlemen by Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neill in which Nemo joins a team fighting a villain intent on destroying London.

Nemo as envisioned by Verne and continued by Moore and O’Neill is an Indian Prince who built a submarine to make a life from the sea. He fights the English who invaded his homeland, but helps those in need. I would love to meet Nemo and hear his remarkable story. I would love to wander through Nemo’s salon aboard the Nautilus and explore his library while he played the organ, then sit back and see the wonders of the ocean revealed through the submarine’s great windows.

Artemus Gordon

The Wild Wild West was the series that introduced me to steampunk before the term had even been coined. When I was in junior high, I used to watch reruns of the show religiously. My parents watched westerns and frankly, when I was a kid, they bored me, but this was something different, a western with a science fictional jolt.

My favorite character was Artemus Gordon, sidekick to the show’s title character, Jim West. Arte invented all the gadgets Jim used, but he was good in a fight and utterly loyal. He was also a lot of fun. My own steampunk costuming is modeled on the clothes Arte wore in The Wild Wild West. What can I say? Arte has been a favorite character for decades. Of course I’d want to meet him!

Brisco County, Jr.

Brisco County, Jr. was a lawyer turned bounty hunter, hired by a group of wealthy men in San Francisco to track down the men who murdered his father. In the process he learned about the orb, a mysterious device from another time that had amazing powers.

What made Brisco County, Jr. such an appealing character was that he was educated and he was always interested in what was around the corner in the next century. As with most of my other picks, he’s a traveler who has seen many places and many things. Although he was a pragmatic realist who wasn’t afraid to fight when he needed to, he always maintained his sense of wonder and optimism.

Fatemeh Karimi

True, I’m engaging in some shameless self-promotion, but seriously of all the characters I’ve created, Fatemeh Karimi is one of the people I’d most like to meet.

Fatemeh is by nature a healer in the ultimate sense. If she sees something wrong, she will attempt to fix it. She also works to balance her rational and spiritual selves. There are times when I could really use her wisdom and council and I’m glad I can seek her out within my own mind. I just hope I do her character justice through my words.

Because these things are more fun with other people also play along,  I’ve decided to tag the following people to play along and name the five fictional characters they’d most like to spend time with:

  1. Marina Martindale
  2. Deby Fredericks
  3. F.T. McKinstry
  4. Sandi Layne