Tag Archives: steampunk

My Monkeys on Attack in the Year’s Best SF!

I’ve been a bit busy promoting my fantasy novels because one was temporarily free, the other had just come out, and both by most folks accounts are pretty awesome, so I’ve been a bit behind on my sci-fi.  But NO MORE!!  You guys remember my steampunk cyborg attack monkey story, “A Song of Home, the Organ Grinds?”  Well it’s been included in Baen Books’ Year’s Best Military & Adventure SF Volume 5.  For those of you who don’t remember because you never read it, here’s what the discerning folks over at Tangent had to say about it:

Even among the more restricted form of military SF there are some unconventional pieces. I thought James Beamon‘s “A Song of Home, the Organ Grinds” was one of the best stories of the year and was amazed that this “year’s best” was the only one to select it. No one should miss this alternate history tale of the Crimean War with a street urchin press-ganged into combat aboard an airship crewed in part by vampire attack monkeys.

No one should miss this, their words not mine, meaning you, meaning definitely check out the book.  The Year’s Best Military & Adventure SF Volume 5 is available directly on the Baen site and other online retailers (Personally I’d go to Amazon.  There’s a crazy amount of price disparity among sites, which I find both strange and perplexing).  You’ll not only get a chance to check out my story but eleven other stories such as the widely acclaimed “Thirty-three Percent Joe” by Suzanne Palmer.

Plus there’s a VOTE!  Readers get to decide which of these stories is the best of this year’s best.  The BESTIEST!  Once you check out the book, head over to the Baen site to vote on your favorite.  I’m hoping it involves killer steampunk attack monkeys…



Filed under War Journals

Lightspeed and sound!

Gristlers!  July is starting off in epic fashion.  Epic as in atmospheric steampunk war story featuring killer cyborg monkeys on an airship.  Yes, people, my story “A Song of Home, the Organ Grinds” is finally out in the latest issue of Lightspeed!  And they really gave the story and yours truly the royal treatment.  Lightspeed made the story this month’s feature and the issue’s cover art, illustrated by the very talented Saleha Chowdhury, is derived from the story.  They also podcasted the story, which makes for the second time a story of mine’s been narrated.  It’s pretty cool hearing your words spoken back to you, and Stefan Rudnicki did a wonderful job creating atmosphere and also has a real knack for sound effects… he has a killer killer monkey impression!

Lightspeed didn’t stop there.  They also gave me an Author Spotlight interview, where Gordon White asks me how I came up with this story and some of the aspects and psychology of the characters and their motivations.  It’s definitely worth checking out after you read the story and want to know the behind the scenes.  You guys will never guess how this idea of attack monkeys spawned.

Lotta links, right?  Ok, let’s recap.

Want to read the story? Click here.

Want to listen to it instead? Click here.

Want to know why the monkeys straight from the source? Click here.

And as always, feel free to come back to the gristle and let me know what you thought about this or anything else.  Happy July folks!

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Intelligence Report: H.G. Wells, Secret Agent – FREE for 2 days!

You guys know I take my humor seriously.  Fun stuff comes along so infrequently you know, and I’ll be damned if I write it all myself.  So when Alex Shvartsman, the driving force behind the Unidentified Funny Objects  anthologies, puts a fun action novella out for free (FREEEEEE) not only do I pick it up, I tell you guys to pick it up.


H.G. Wells, Secret Agent is a romp through Victorian-era England, with Wells as a steampunk style James Bond.  Fun, Fast-paced, Frivolously anachronistic.. for FREE!

Get it here!  Read it!  Leave a review or just come back here and tell me what you think.  But you guys gotta act on it A.S.A.P. – the free status only lasts today and tomorrow.


Filed under Intelligence Reports

War Journal 27: New and Improved same old thing

It's like this with a keyboard

I’ve been in Afghanistan for a little while now, and don’t it feel like a long while!  Seriously though, it’s deployment… and every deployment has the same feel to it.  The days run into each other, the meals are about as memorable as the disposable paper plates you eat them from, and you long for vacation.  Deployments are useful if you channel the time.  Now that I’m well acclimated to Afghanistan’s special brand of suck, it’s time to start writing again.

I actually already have.  I wrote a short story.  Remember me saying sometimes you have to go out of your comfort zone?  I wrote my first steampunk/gaslight fantasy story.  Before I just couldn’t really vibe that whole subgenre, and I’m still not an avid fan of it… but if nothing else I think the story I wrote rocks.  But of course I would think that.  It’s making it’s way through my writer’s workshop, so I’ll get an idea of what the reading public will think in due time.  Meanwhile, after all the vacation time in the states, it just felt good to put thoughts into words and tell a story.

That said, it’s time to get back to more than just the War Journal.  Of course, when absurdity ensues as it surely will out here I’ll update… but for now every day is an identical twin to the day before and day after.  The War Journal will be getting real lean if I have to depend on my everyday activities, so I’ll wager I’ll just let you guys know when I get another acceptance letter and any other good news in my world of telling stories.  Besides, there’s still undiscovered pages of the Internet that I have to let you all know about via the Intelligence Report.  And Creative Combat Arms… well, that’s just me blowing hot air… but I need to do that.   It’s starting to get cold out here in Afghanistan.

And the Rant Grenade?   Well, I try not to be an angry sort.  But living the same day over and over again can’t help but bring the jaded cynical smartass out in most people.  We’ll see how that goes.

Leave a comment

Filed under War Journals