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[sticky post] Abandon all hope, ye who enter here.

Cuz it needs to be said before you read any further:





This Blog is Rated R.


EFFECTIVE APRIL 1, 2012


(No foolin'.)

My primary blog was moved to WordPress starting in July 2011. I had been mirroring entries here since then, but I think enough time now has passed that most folks know where to find me.

I'm not deleting this blog, as I still use my LJ account to read and comment on my friends' journals, and to send and receive messages. As for this blog, I have disabled comments across the board, mostly so that I don't have to deal with spam any longer.

So, if you've been reading my LJ, I hope you'll continue to follow my blatherings over at The Fog of Ward. As with here, I've left it open for reading by everyone, and posting comments is about as easy to do there as here.

Thanks!

Look! Shiny stuff!

So, this arrived in today's mail, having completed its safe and successful journey across the pond from the home offices of Unreality SF to stately Ward Manor:



Click me!
(Click to biggie size.)


I was relieved to see that it had arrived intact, after hearing that the award sent to writer/actor John Dorney, this year's runner up in the Unreality poll for his Doctor Who audio play Solitaire, traveled but a fraction of the distance only to arrive at his home in three pieces. No assembly required for me, though.

Thanks again to everyone who voted for Paths of Disharmony, and to the kind folk at Unreality for holding the poll as they have the previous two years, and for the very nice award which has already found a place of distinction on one of the shelves in my home office. I will do my best to protect it from the curious eyes and unsteady hands of my two offspring.

What a naughty blogger I've been.

Yes, I've been remiss in my social media responsibilities these past several days. Chalk it up to being first on the road to Denver, then consumed by the awesome chaos that is the annual Starfest Convention, during which I had Clan Ward with me to enjoy the fun, then the road trip back to Kansas City yesterday. On top of all of that? I was sick, fighting whatever bug had burrowed its way into my system a little over a week ago, and which only seemed to get more determined as the convention got into full swing. Even now I'm still fighting the damned thing. Despite that, we had a blast, and a more detailed after-action report will be forthcoming.

For now? I need to address a few administrative items:


  • First, it was announced last Friday that my Star Trek: Typhon Pact novel Paths of Disharmony was voted the Story of the Year by the good folks at Unreality SF, the website devoted to news, reviews, and interviews focusing on the world of media tie-in writing. It was a tough group of finalists, which makes the selection that much more gratifying. I'm even told an actual trophy is on its way to me in the near future. Rest assured there will be a shameless photo of me mugging with the thing once it arrives at stately Ward Manor. Many thanks to everyone who voted for the book, and for the Unreality SF gang for hosting the poll.

  • Also on Friday, Kevin and I received the copyedited manuscript for our forthcoming Star Trek: Vanguard novel, What Judgments Come. We have until the 28th to address any notes, make any revisions/fixes, and so on. Guess that's the next big thing on the agenda, but not until I finish....

  • The outline for the Star Trek original series novel Kevin and I will be writing this summer. I'm behind a bit on this, owing to the Denver trip and being sick. I expect to finish it this evening, though, so that I can get on with finishing my still in-progress article for Star Trek Magazine which is due on the 22nd.

  • I also need to take a more detailed gander at the outline for David Mack's next Vanguard novel, Storming Heaven, which is due out next summer. I gave it a cursory read today just to get a gut feel for the thing, and I have to tell you people who read the Vanguard series (and really, the rest of you who don't but should), that this promises to be EPIC MACK. That's right, I just invented a new descriptor, of which "Awesome" will evermore be known as a subcategory. Grab your socks and hose and pull, folks; it's gonna be a hell of a ride.

Anyway, I've got enough to keep me busy over the next few days.

So, what did I miss? Y'all behave while I was away?

New interview at Unreality SF.

Cover for Paths of Disharmony
Jens Deffner over at Unreality SF has posted a new interview he conducted with me. I'm assuming I was the subject of this latest interview because Charlie Sheen isn't returning any phone calls.

Anyway, during the course of our latest tête-à-tête, Jens manages to elicit from me new info about Paths of Disharmony, my recently-released novel for the Star Trek: Typhon Pact mini-series, as well as some juicy tidbits about my forthcoming contributions to the Star Trek: Vanguard series: a novella for the Declassified anthology, coming in June, and What Judgments Come, scheduled for October. We also cover a bit of ground about The Last World War and my sequel from last year, Counterstrike, and even my first foray into the world of editing.

Beware that the interview contains spoilers for Paths of Disharmony. If you're wanting to read the interview and not be spoiled, Jens has set up a link which bypasses that part of the piece: Read the interview, and don't F-ing spoil me!

Otherwise, you can read the whole thing HERE.

Thanks to Jens, Dan, and Unreality SF for taking the time to include me in their ongoing coverage of genre media tie-in products. If you're a follower of such books, comics, and audio dramas for such properties as Star Trek, Doctor Who, Stargate, and so on, Unreality is the place you need to be checking out.

Paths of Disharmony: "official" Q&A post.

Well, today marks the "official" publication date for the book, even though some folks have had it for as much as two weeks, due to the weirdness of time, space, fate, and other nefarious forces at work behind the scenes. For the e-Book crowd, today marks the date electronic versions of the book are available for different devices and gadgets (not all, I'm learning, but supposedly that's being addressed).

You've got yours, right?

Anyway, I've been getting some interesting (and a couple of interesting) questions about the book. After answering those queries, I decided to try something new. I'm making this the "official Q&A" post for Paths of Disharmony. Here, you'll (hopefully) be able to get the straight dope from the dope, along with answers to all those burning questions about the story, characters, what it might mean for the ongoing narrative(s) currently underway in the various series/lines/etc., what the hell I was thinking when I wrote that, or that, or even THAT, and so on.

If questions wander into areas about which I'm not able to reveal too much info, I'll be as polite about that as I can. I can't rule out a smart-ass comment in reply to a really weird question, but I'll do my best to keep that autonomous response in check. Even if that happens, I'll still try to supply something approaching a "real" answer. Consider this post the Hollywood Squares of book-related threads. :D

(For those of you reading this via Facebook, feel free to comment/inquire in the FB space.)

And with that, let the inquisition begin!

EDIT: I've been asked to repost questions I received via eMail. I don't typically repost the contents of eMails to the blog, but I've asked those with whom I corresponded if it was okay, and so far I've gotten a couple of approvals. So, with that in mind, here are the questions I answered before starting this thread.

WARNING: SPOILERS FOR THE BOOK FOLLOW!!!

Questions answered behind the cut....Collapse )

Paths of Disharmony

Cover for Paths of Disharmony
Star Trek: Typhon Pact

On a diplomatic mission to the planet Andor, Captain Picard and the crew of the Enterprise-E bear witness to the rank devastation resulting from the Borg invasion. With the reproductive issues that have long plagued the Andorian people reaching crisis level, avenues of research that at first held great promise have proven largely unhelpful, and may well indeed be worsening the problem.

Despite the Federation's seeming inability to provide assistance and growing doubt over its commitment to a staunch, longtime ally, Andorian scientists now offer renewed hope for a solution. However, many segments of Andorian society are protesting this controversial new approach, and more radical sects are beginning to make their displeasure known by any means available. In response, President Nanietta Bacco has sent the Enterprise crew and a team of diplomats and scientists to Andor to convene a summit, in the hope of demonstrating that the Federation's pledge to helping Andor is sincere.

But the Typhon Pact is watching, and their interests may very well lead the Andorian people down an even more treacherous path....


Order from Amazon.com!
Amazon Kindle e-Book

Paths of Disharmony excerpt.

Cover for Paths of Disharmony
I'm obviously a little late posting about this, but I only just got a notification about it last night. Anyway, for those of you who haven't yet taken the plunge with the new book, the good folk over at Simon & Schuster have posted the first chapter of Paths of Disharmony over on their site. For those who might wonder, this is not the same excerpt which appears in the current issue of Star Trek Magazine.

Behold, yo:

simonandschuster.com: Paths of Disharmony excerpt

And don't forget the ongoing Q&A thread I posted earlier this week. I've also gotten a couple of new queries via e-Mail, and once I have permission to post the contents from their messages, I'll update the thread over there.

Paths of Disharmony...now available!


It looks as though Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble are listing Paths of Disharmony as available and ready for shipping! I expect this means the book should be starting to show up in brick-n-mortar stores any time now.

And so comes a close to this, the initial batch of stories involving the "Typhon Pact." Where will things go from here? In all honesty, I have absolutely no idea, other than I look forward to the conversations which no doubt will come about between me and the next writer in the line-up...whoever that ends up being. :)

Hehehehee....

EDIT: In response to a question I've already received about when the novel takes place, I discovered from flipping through a copy of the book that it doesn't have the "Historian's Note" which was included in my original manuscript. I don't know why they cut that, but there are other clues that tell me they were trying to keep the page count for the book from going over a certain number. My dedication doesn't even have its own page, but is instead at the top of the copyright page. Weird.

Anyway, about that note:

HISTORIAN'S NOTE

The events of this novel unfold during the latter half of 2382,
more than a year after the events of the Star Trek: Destiny trilogy
and approximately three years after the events of the film Star Trek Nemesis.




Paths of Disharmony...in da house!

The UPS guy graced me with a package today, and what did I find inside? My crisp, brand-new author copies of my newest novel, Paths of Disharmony, the fourth of the 4-book Star Trek: Typhon Pact mini-series.

(Yeah, I know, "mini-series" is a bit of a misnomer, as the four books aren't really joined at the hip in true mini-series fashion. Like the other series such as Section 31 and The Captain's Table, the books in the Typhon Pact sequence are linked more from a thematic standpoint. No cliffhangers jumping you from book to book, and so on.)

Anyway, behold:



The book carries a publication date of January 25th, which means you could start seeing it in stores as early as next week, depending on how on the ball the staff of your local bookstore might be.



Horrors, Bubbas, and Paths...oh my.

Been an interesting day.

First, as part of the Twitter Party today celebrating the release of Space Horrors, several excerpts from the book were posted throughout the day. Included among those was a bit from my own story, "Into the Abyss." You can read that right here. Enjoy (I hope).

Next, I was alerted to a new review of another anthology which features one of my stories, A Bubba In Time Saves None! The author of the piece has a good time with the review, immersing himself in the whole Bubbatude and everything. It's worth reading just for that.

Also included in the day's activities was the restart of the Star Trek Re-Watch over at Tor.com with me and David Mack (infinitydog) ripping "Spock's Brain" a new one.

Finally, FedEx graced me with a delivery today, that being the first-pass pages for Paths of Disharmony. 460 of 'em. Just a little light reading before bedtime.

So, yeah. A bit of a day, but a good one, all around. :)


Declassified, Paths, and Zombies, oh my.

So, I sent my novella for the forthcoming Vanguard: Declassified anthology yesterday to my editor at Pocket Books. I'll also be sending it on to my fellow Vanguard scribes for their feedback as part of the editorial process. Why? Because it's an excuse for us all to talk smack about each other.

For the moment, the novella's title is Almost Tomorrow. More on that and little things like plot tidbits whenever it's appropriate to share.

Next up: Reviewing and making changes to the copyedited manuscript for Paths of Disharmony, which is due back to Pocket next week. Though CBS has approved the book without making any requests for changes, I've still got some guidance from the editor and the copyeditor to take under consideration, as well as a list of things I want to doublecheck or fix on my own, and even some feedback from a beta reader I enlisted this time around. Since time is short, the priorities are 1) Editor/Copyeditor notes, 2) My wish list, 3) Beta readers notes, except when stuff from "3" is better than stuff from "2." Here's hoping I can fit it all in.

And while that's going on, I'm turning up the heat on "And Then One Night, All Hell Broke Loose," my script for HG World. I had to set it aside while I finished the Vanguard novella, but I'm hoping to fit it into this sortakinda "lull period" when I can multi-task a bit. Besides, writing about zombies is therapeutic, in an odd sort of way.

Waiting in the wings? Kevin and I will shortly be writing a new article for Star Trek Magazine, as well as finalizing the outline for what will be the sixth Vanguard novel.

And so it goes, and goes.

Paths of Disharmony: the cover.

As it's been approved by CBS Consumer Products and I've been told it's okay to share with the five or six of you who read this blog, I present the cover for Paths of Disharmony.

So, you know, voilà, and all that.

Hey, you don't suppose that whole "red filter" glazing across the whole cover happens to have any subtle meanings, do ya? Nah.


(Click to enlarge.)

In related news, the massive brick that is the copyedited manuscript arrived on my doorstep this morning. Once I'm finished with my Vanguard: Declassified novella, I'll turn to addressing any fixes/changes which have been requested, and get those back to editor Jaime Costas on or about the 18th.

And so it goes....

Paths of Disharmony cover copy.


Got a heads-up earlier today that the back cover copy for my forthcoming Star Trek: Typhon Pact novel, Paths of Disharmony, has been posted at the Simon and Schuster website:

-----

On a diplomatic mission to the planet Andor, Captain Picard and the crew of the Enterprise-E bear witness to the rank devastation resulting from the Borg invasion. With the reproductive issues that have long plagued the Andorian people reaching crisis level, avenues of research that at first held great promise have proven largely unhelpful, and may well indeed be worsening the problem.

Despite the Federation's seeming inability to provide assistance and growing doubt over its commitment to a staunch, longtime ally, Andorian scientists now offer renewed hope for a solution. However, many segments of Andorian society are protesting this controversial new approach, and more radical sects are beginning to make their displeasure known by any means available. In response, President Nanietta Bacco has sent the Enterprise crew and a team of diplomats and scientists to Andor to convene a summit, in the hope of demonstrating that the Federation's pledge to helping Andor is sincere.

But the Typhon Pact is watching, and their interests may very well lead the Andorian people down an even more treacherous path....

-----

Wow.

That sounds a lot more interesting than the book I wrote....

Speaking of which, I heard back from editor Jaime Costas yesterday that the manuscript was approved by CBS Licensing with no changes requested. Go me.

Paths, counterstrikes, and other stuff.

Well, today was a pretty good day on the writing front.
Cover for Counterstrike

It started with me delivering the manuscript for Paths of Disharmony to editor Jaime Costas at Pocket. Now I wait to receive her feedback, revision notes, or threats for me never to work in this business again so long as breath remains in her body.

No sooner did that happen than UPS shows up. What did Brown do for me? Why, they delivered two advance copies of Counterstrike: The Last World War, Book II, fresh off the presses. And they even have that new car smell. The countdown is officially on, boys and girls!

Cover for Distant Early Warning
So, what's next? First, we've got a couple of pieces to finish up for Star Trek Magazine, all on the quick-like, and I need to finish reviewing galley pages for our Star Trek: S.C.E. novella Distant Early Warning, which is set to be collected into the forthcoming Corps of Engineers trade paperback omnibus, What's Past (coming in August). After that, I've got an outline for a tie-in project to get done within the month, and some Kevin and I have some serious discussions on tap for the tie-in project after that. I'd also like to turn some A-game attention to the outline for what I'd like to be a new original/non tie-in novel. There are a couple of other things hovering between back and front burners, but there's not much I can say about them at this point.

So, I'll throttle back a bit this weekend (though I will complete the next Wayback Trek Review!), then hit the gas again early next week.

Okay. I did it.

I went and entered this year's National Novel Writing Month contest.

I'm just starting work on my next novel, Paths of Disharmony for next year's Star Trek: The Typhon Pact miniseries, anyway. I was supposed to start back on October 1st, but some other stuff came along which demanded my attention, and I ended up back-burnering the entire thing until November so I could clear the decks. That means the timeframe I was given to write the book isn't as big as it once was, and I was going to have to make up the lost time between now and February 2nd.

What better motivator to do exactly that, than to make myself accountable in such a public fashion? Since today is the first day I've actually sat down and started writing...you know...actual words toward the novel, it seemed like a damned fine idea. So....



I've had a good morning so far, good enough that I can with a clear conscience turn toward other writing matters. Once I'm done for the day, I'll post one of those word-count meter thingees...assuming I can figure out how to make one of them work.

Onward!

Getting ready to take the plunge. Again.

October 1st is right around the corner, and that marks my scheduled "start date" for writing Paths of Disharmony, my entry in the forthcoming 4-book Star Trek: Typhon Pact mini-series.

(Note: I've seen the title listed as Path... here and there. Unless I missed a memo, it's supposed to be plural. :))

What can I offer up so far as juicy tidbits are concerned? Not much at this point, really. What I can say is that it "stars" Picard and company from the Enterprise-E, assigned to a diplomatic mission (of sorts) to Andor. The Andorians got kicked in the junk pretty good, thanks to infinitydog's Star Trek: Destiny trilogy, and this has only exacerbated several ongoing issues plaguing their planet and people. As for the Typhon Pact itself, they'll be represented in this book by the Tholian Assembly. What are they up to? Well, that would be telling, wouldn't it?

I'm currently scheduled to turn in a manuscript of 100,000+ words on February 2. At least, that's what the contract says. Margaret Clark always liked to work toward "holidays" and other dates of interest with respect to due dates, and that's the one she gave me.

Between now and then, I also plan to write two short stories for different markets to which I've been invited (invited to submit, that is; no guarantee they'll select my story), as well as co-write a couple of articles for Star Trek Magazine and even a piece that we've been asked to do for a genre-related news website. So, the fall and early winter are shaping up to be busy times. Nice!

Lazy Sunday.....

Well, not really.

After our weekly breakfast with Michi's father, who then dotes on his grandkids while Michi kicks my ass at pool, I sat down to complete my outline revisions for what will be Paths of Disharmony, my entry in the forthcoming 4-book Star Trek: The Typhon Pact mini-series. The notes offered up by Madame Editor weren't really all that much, but it did require rethinking a couple of threads running throughout the story. Said revisions are going to let me bring in a few fun bits of Trek lore, so that's a plus.

(Mwuahahahaha....)

Since mine will be the last book of the mini-series and will likely "redirect" certain ongoing plot points with respect to the post-Destiny goings-on, it does have a few requisite "Holy Shit!" moments. Looks good in the outline; I guess we'll see what happens when I actually write the thing.

Anyway, it's on its way through the aether to the editor's e-Mail inbox, and I expect I'll hear from her in short order if we're good to go.

What's next? Finishing another chapter of Counterstrike, which continues to chug merrily along....


Edit to Add: Almost forgot! I'll be talking to the guys at Trekcast again this evening, providing a postgame wrapup of the Trek Expo and Shore Leave conventions, as well as a pregame warmup for Comic-con. It's being recorded for what I think will be the podcast's next weekly "regular" episode, which should go live some time tomorrow. Stay tuned!

Shore Leave recap: "Too soon?"

This past weekend brought with it our annual pilgrimage to Baltimore for the Shore Leave convention. In addition to the usual assortment of guests, panel discussions, book signings, and sundry other "official" programming events, the con is one of few chances we have during the year to connect in person with friends and colleagues. That last part is really just a lame way of saying it's an excuse to get drunk with friends.

Let me tell you about Shore Leave....Collapse )

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Dayton Ward

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