New Posts in Partner Blogs

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Looking for additional news of City of the Gods Universe projects? You can find out more in the blogs of our contributors.

Our Art Director Steven S. Crompton has posted an overview of all the publications he has worked on in 2014. Look, there’s Mythic Tales 2!

Writer Randy Lindsay has updated his website with an exclusive sneak peek of the art from his Mythic Tales 2 story, Bloody Hector. There’s also news on his other anthology story and his independent novel projects.

The Look of the Book

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With Mythic Tales 2 in final art and layout phase, it’s time for a pre-release look at how the anthology is shaping up. Visually, the volume will be very similar to the first, with an interior comprised of stories illustrated with gray scale or line art. However, the story arrangement will be slightly different. Titles are separated into one of two sections: stories featuring mortals, and stories featuring gods. We realized in edits that we had an even split between the two types of tales and decided to let that show in the layout. Look for stories with City of the Gods hero D’Molay in the mortal section.

Here’s a page from my story, Seven Steps to Freedom.

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Dragon Con 2014 Mini-Report

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If I were only permitted to say one thing about Dragon Con 2014, I’d remark that it went by the quickest of any Dragon Con I’ve attended — and 2014 was my 12th time. Most of my convention shenanigans are not appropriate topics for this book blog so I’ll stick to more genteel stories. You’ll have to find me at Dragon Con 2015 and buy me a Bucket of Rum if you want to hear other epic tales.

First, I’d like to thank everyone who came out for the City of the Gods giveaway. Be sure to let us know what you thought of Mythic Tales. The second volume will be out later this year. I still have a few souvenir ORIGINS card decks with the collectible COG card inside. If you would like one, just post a review of one of our books somewhere and send me the link. Now, on to the con report:

I’m not terribly interested in getting autographs from actors or going to panels about TV shows and movies. I’d much prefer to spend my time checking out what other creators are making and selling. There is always something new to discover in the art show, at the comic creators’ tables or in the dealer room. Check out this cute sketch by Accidental Centaurs artist and writer John Lotshaw:
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We also stopped to chat with Bill Holbrook, creator of the popular Kevin & Kell books and discovered Brian Defferding’s School: A Ghost Story series. Jennie Breeden’s What Not to Say in the Bedroom book also found its way into our shopping bag (ahem). Several book publishing imprints had special promotions for their label’s authors and I hit a few of those events to investigate their advertising giveaways and reader swag. I really enjoyed learning about how other authors and artists promote and monetize their work. Now that convention season is over, it’s back to work for me as well.

Find Me At Dragon Con For Prizes

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I love conventions and I love meeting readers at them. If you are going to be at Dragon Con 2014, I have a gift for you!

Pending schedule changes, I will be lurking near the Hilton Grand Ballroom West about 3:45 p.m. on Friday, August 29. That’s where the 4 PM “Gaming to Novel and Back Again” panel will be held. I have no idea what crazy costume I may be in at the time, but I will be carrying a stack of City of the Gods bookmarks. Wave me over and you’ll get a free book and maybe an extra surprise as well.

If the time or place of this panel is changed, I will tweet a new plan. Pray to the gods of the congested Atlanta cell towers for mercy if I have to do this during the con!

(Disclaimer: I am in no way involved with the “Gaming to Novel and Back Again” panel; it just sounds like an awesome topic.)

Mythic Tales 2 On Track For Winter Release

Another short story collection set in the City of the Gods Universe is drawing nearer to its release date (December 2014). Would you like a sneak peek of the cover?
Anthogy Cover2 9x6 (Artwork not final and may change)

We have a great line-up of stories for you by familiar and new authors. Let us tell you about:

  • the first meeting of D’Molay and Mazu
  • the fate of the ship’s crew that sailed D’Molay and Aavi to Dioscrias
  • the time Mazu negotiated with the Greek deities
  • the boy a slaver saved from slavery
  • the ring D’Molay won from Odin
  • the threat to Tenh-Mer’s freedom
  • the short reign of a dog goddess
  • and more!

We are truly thrilled that other authors enjoy writing in our universe. Would you like to join them? Leave a comment if you would like to be notified when submissions open for Mythic Tales 3.

The Link Between Superheroes and Gods

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The City of the Gods Universe embraces many forms of expression: novels, short stories, games, art and comics. M. Scott Verne and I love conventions. With our world represented in so many different types of media, we can always offer an angle of interest to sci-fi, fantasy or gaming con-goers. At San Diego Comic Con 2014, M. Scott Verne appeared on the “Spiritual Themes in Comics” panel presented by the Christian Comic Arts Society. Here’s a photo courtesy of fellow panelist John J. Schafer (producer of the animated series Superbook).

atsdcc2014 SDCC 2014 “Spiritual Themes in Comics” panel: John J. Schafer (left), M. Scott Verne (center), B. Dave Walters (right)

Back in the mid-90s, the seeds for the City of the Gods Universe were planted with the three-issue comic series Pantheon (published by Debora Kerr’s old company Archer Books and Games). The tagline for the books was “They’re Not Superheroes, They’re Gods!” But is there really such a difference? At the panel, M. Scott discussed the design similarity between popular comic characters and mythological ones. Most follow the archetype of the flawed uber-man. Parallels can be drawn between the Hulk and Gilgamesh, or Tony Stark and Icarus. Pride, anger, addiction and other foibles disadvantage otherwise perfect beings and help us “normals” deal with our own failings. The topic is a rich one for discussion and we hope to explore it on other panels in the future.

Invite us to your convention and we’ll tell you more!

The Gaming Connection

For my June post, I have two items of interest for our fans who play either rpgs or tabletop games.

Guided Adventures in the City
Sometime this fall I will be running “City of the Gods” adventures at Roll20, and would like our readers to be among the first to play. Roll 20, if you haven’t heard of it, is a fantastic online visual role playing website. This video introduction hits the highlights and will explain it far better than my words. Interested? Sign up for your free account at Roll20.net and leave a comment to this post to be added to my list of potential players. Would you rather join D’Molay on a quest, or help Sekhmet outwit another of Set’s schemes? Those who sign up early will be allowed to vote on their favorite game scenarios from a list I will provide.

Council of the Gods
Back in 2001, I pitched a satirical political card game to a major game company. While they were receptive, due to many factors the project never came to be. However, it was too good to abandon and has been revamped for the City of the Gods Universe. Imagine yourself as a god or goddess on the Council, hearing petitions, granting or denying requests, and more importantly, “sticking it” to your rival Council Members. The digital version of Council of the Gods will soon be available for play testing. If you would like to learn the game and play live at Roll20 with me, get your free account set up and drop a comment indicating your interest.

Have a wonderful summer, wherever your adventures take you!

Pitch Opportunity: Tell Your Mythic Tale

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Have you ever had a great idea for a short story set in our City of the Gods Universe? With our next Mythic Tales anthology set for release late this year, we’re giving our fans one last chance to pitch their tales of gods and men for a chance to be published. In honor of Phoenix Comic Con (June 5 – 8 2014), we are re-opening submissions for a short window only. Please submit your story pitches by June 21st. Full submission guidelines at this link.

Speaking of Phoenix Comic Con, if you have any City of the Gods merchandise you would like to have signed by our artist Steve Crompton, you can find him throughout the weekend at the Carnal Comics booth. Steve is always happy to talk about his work and may even have some City of the Gods products you haven’t seen yet. Stop by and check out Steve’s many other comics and gaming projects.

Great Interview, Bad Photo!

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A recent interview with me has been posted at Author Alliance. I apologize for the pixel-ridden headshot — I apparently missed the dpi upload instructions. In any event, it’s just my Twitter icon and you all know what that looks like, don’t you? Hope you’re following me on Twitter, where I post much more often than I do here.

Here’s an excerpt from my interview . . .

Who are your heroes? Why?”

My heroes are those who fight powerful governments for the sake of freedom. That might be a lawyer trying to free an innocent man from jail, a whistle-blower exposing corruption, or those who fight zealously for property and civil rights. Heroes like these always appear in my books

Read it all at Author Alliance.

Pick A Card

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The City of the Gods Universe will be well represented at this summer’s ORIGINS and GENCON conventions. We have a card in the Famous Game Designers Playing Card Deck 2014. Cover art from our second novel, City of the Gods: Guardian, graces the 7 of clubs in the deck.

34 7 Club Looks like seven is our lucky number!

The decks will not be available to purchase until ORIGINS 2014 which falls on June 11 – 15 this year. If you make it to either ORIGINS or GENCON, stop by the Flying Buffalo booth to get a deck — and tell Rick I said hello!

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