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Month: October 2017

Two New Silo Books

When I started getting serious about writing a story in the Silo Saga for Kindle Worlds, I thought about other writers who might be good candidates to try to rope into this fiasco with me. My idea was not that we should write a story together, but rather that we might craft our tales in such a way that they referenced each other subtly. I loved the idea that it might be possible for an eagle-eyed reader to spot the places where we overlapped. After giving it some thought, I settled on approaching my old friend Boris Schleinkofer with the idea. He had never read Hugh Howey’s books, but we remedied that quickly and before long he was in.

I met Boris in middle school and we went to the same church together for a while. It was a Pentecostal church, the kind of place attended by people who would at times be referred to as holy rollers. Speaking in tongues was a regular thing to witness at the services Boris and I would sit through, both of us required to do so by our parents. I remember one particular service distinctly. A specialist in backwards satanic messages in rock music gave a presentation where he played various famous songs backwards and explained that what were hearing were messages praising the devil. He played Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven” forwards and backwards and explained that the lyrics to the song held satanic messaging both ways, then went on to tell a story about Robert Plant being dictated how to do this by Satan himself through a fireplace. Afterwards I remember Boris being so bummed because his mom was at that service and he thought she was going to bring the hammer down on him as an enjoyer of rock music. I understood; I was in a similar boat with my parents.

A handful of years later I released a song from Boris’s punk band on a compilation I released through my record label, so I guess we found our way to rock music despite the best efforts of the church.

Anyway, back to the books.

A while after we got into the process of writing our silo stories, Boris let me know that he didn’t think we’d be able to have much in the way of overlap. He’d read the first draft of mine and said his plans would take the story in a direction where our characters wouldn’t be able to interact. Now that I have read his story, I understand completely. My book takes place firmly within the confines of the world of a silo as described in the original WOOL novella where characters are unaware of the reason for their lives and surroundings. Boris’s book, S1L0, is much larger in scope. It spans the timeframe from before the creation of the silos to well past their end. If my story is a slice of life in the silo saga, the tale Boris has crafted is a wickedly sharp cleaver smashing down upon the mythology from unexpected angles. I’ve read it twice already and enjoyed it even more the second time through. I will read it again.

I would recommend checking out both of our Silo Saga novellas if only to make up your own mind about them:

S1L0 by Boris D. Schleinkofer

SHADOW KILLER by David R. Larson

I can promise there are no secret backwards messages in mine.


A Good Weekend.

As luck would have it, author Hugh Howey came through town to do a book signing four days after my own Silo Saga novella was released. I showed him the listing for my book as he signed my copy of his new book, MACHINE LEARNING. He was a good sport and complimented the photo I chose for the cover, which was above and beyond as far as I was concerned. I was able to tell him that WOOL inspired me to take the leap from writing screenplays to writing novels. Then the guy behind me in line dumped out a huge stack of Howey’s books from what appeared to be an ancient gunny sack (my imagination may have done some work on this detail) and Hugh moved on to what I imagine was the kind of autograph assembly line that would inspire haggard authors to strike for better conditions and shorter workdays in the book mines.

My novella in the Silo Saga, SHADOW KILLER, has been up for a week in the Kindle Worlds shop on Amazon, but the page count only just appeared on the listing this morning. 89 pages, it says. Not too shabby for 23k words. I was expecting it to be closer to 70 pages. You can find it here:

But let’s say you don’t know any of what I’m talking about. Maybe you’ve never heard of Hugh Howey and don’t know what WOOL is, much less the Silo Saga or Kindle Worlds. What is all this?

Here’s a quick overview:

An author named Hugh Howey wrote a 12k word novella called WOOL and self-published it in 2011. It took off, because it’s fantastic, and people demanded more. Hugh went on to write much more, delivering 4 more chapters to the WOOL story, 3 chapters that comprise the next book, SHIFT, and a final book in the trilogy called DUST. The original novella is available free for Kindle on Amazon. You should check it out. Or just trust me and buy the WOOL Omnibus, SHIFT Omnibus, and DUST straightaway. If you think you would like this kind of story, odds are you will love this specific story.

Silo Saga is the name given to this overall story setting. Early on, Howey granted permission for other writers to craft stories in his world, and before long Amazon had the Silo Saga licensed for their Kindle Worlds program which allows authors to write and publish in various properties like Pretty Little Liars, Southern Shifters, and G.I. Joe, among many others.

And that’s essentially it. If you’ve never read any of Hugh Howey’s books, you could probably still read SHADOW KILLER and understand most of it. Maybe all of it. I would like to hear from someone who didn’t know the original story about how my story comes across as a standalone. If you’re one of those people, hit me up via one of the places on my contact page. I’d love to hear your opinion.